LiFi technology can be used as an optical supplement to the conventional WiFi technology. Data transmission occurs wirelessly via modulated LED light, i.e. not by radio. Light does not pass through the walls and accordingly, unlike WiFi, identical LiFi systems can be used in adjacent rooms. Furthermore, radio waves or electromagnetic interference cannot affect LiFi systems.
The Fraunhofer HHI has been working on various applications of this new technology for several years. In the future, LiFi is to be integrated into mobile devices (laptops, tablets, and smartphones) and into the existing lighting infrastructure.
Within the framework of the internal Fraunhofer funding program for SME, a conference room at the institute was equipped with a pilot installation to demonstrate the potential of LiFi in everyday life. “LiFi technology offers an exciting complement to radio-based systems. The SME project has contributed significantly to the development of new LiFi modules that are linked with each other and thus enable homogeneous illumination”, comments project manager Dr.-Ing. Anagnostis Paraskevopoulos.
Technology Innovation Day
This first pilot installation was presented at this year's "Technology Innovation Day" at the Fraunhofer HHI. The Institute has also recently developed new LiFi USB modules that enable gigabit data rates with low power consumption. The LiFi USB modules require only one USB3.0 port for data exchange and power supply. Thus, users can now move freely with LiFi in the room.
Both developments together result in a complete solution for secure conference rooms, which the Fraunhofer HHI can now offer from a single source. LiFi is especially interesting for users who require a higher privacy protection in wireless communication, such as government agencies and banks.