The IEEE and the IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) will look into the use of light to support wireless LAN applications. The newly formed IEEE 802.11 Light Communications Study Group will look to address LAN and Internet of Things applications using spectrum beyond that typically employed for wireless communications. The study group will canvass manufacturers, operators, and end users to build consensus around requirements that will lead to creation of a Project Authorization Request (PAR). If approved, the PAR will lead to an effort to create the necessary standards for wireless LAN network light communications.
The IEEE says light communications (sometimes called LiFi or visible light communications; see "LightPointe, Firefly Wireless Networks target light-based alternative to WiFi") uses solid state lighting (e.g., LED lighting) to transmit high-bandwidth data wirelessly. The Study Group will look to leverage the technology's potential to offer high bandwidth, efficiency, security, and data density without being subjected to or contributing to electromagnetic interference (EMI) below 3 THz.
"In just a few short years, the interest in light communications has grown significantly and there is an enormous amount of valuable knowledge that vendors and operators can share as they work together to advance the technology globally," said Nikola Serafimovski, chair of the IEEE 802.11 Light Communications Study Group. "It's an exciting time for the light communications market sector, as it is poised for substantial growth over the next five years. We look forward to broad participation under the auspices of the IEEE 802.11 Wireless LAN Working Group and the IEEE-SA as we work to develop the light communications market in line with industry needs, and to ensure best practices that drive market expansion."
Additional information is available on the IEEE 802.11 Light Communications Study Group web page.
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