Beam Steering NIR Indoor Optical Wireless Communications
Infrared optical wireless communication using lasers has recently become a promising solution for high-speed indoor optical wireless transmission thanks to its unique advantages of wide bandwidth, high data rate, easy access and low cost benefitting from readily available fiber communication devices, such as lasers, low-loss optical fibers, and high-speed modulators and photodetectors. In addition, infrared optical wireless communication also offers higher link power budget compared to visible light communications (VLC) due to the relaxed eye-safety regulations in infrared band. Unlike VLC where omnidirectional LEDs illuminate large areas using largely divergent beam, infrared optical wireless communication uses narrow pencil beams to form point to point links between users and the access point. Therefore, a beam steering device is usually required.
Conventional mechanical beam steering solutions have inherent disadvantages of relatively low steering speed and bulky size. This project investigates novel and efficient non-mechanical beam steering approaches, such as those based on spatial light modulator (SLM) and in-fiber diffraction grating. Special optical design for point-to-point light collection will be studied as well.