LIFI TECHNOLOGY

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Whether you’re using wireless internet in a coffee shop, stealing it from the guy next door, or competing for bandwidth at a conference, you’ve probably gotten frustrated at the slow speeds you face when more than one device is tapped into the network.

As more and more people and their many devices access wireless internet, clogged airwaves are going to make it increasingly difficult to latch onto a reliable signal. But radio waves are just one part of the spectrum that can carry our data. What if we could use other waves to surf the internet?

Introduction of Lifi Technology

In simple terms, Li-Fi Technology can be thought of as a light-based Wi-Fi. That is, it uses light instead of radio waves to transmit information. And instead of Wi-Fi modems, Li-Fi Technology would use transceiver-fitted LED lamps that can light a room as well as transmit and receive information. Since simple light bulbs are used, there can technically be any number of access points.

This technology uses a part of the electromagnetic spectrum that is still not greatly utilized- The Visible Spectrum. It is possible to encode data in the light by varying the rate at which the LEDs flicker on and off to give different strings of 1s and 0s. The LED intensity is modulated so rapidly that human eyes cannot notice, so the output appears constant.

How Li-Fi Technology Works?

Li-Fi is typically implemented using white LED light bulbs at the downlink transmitter. These devices are normally used for illumination only by applying a constant current. However, by fast and subtle variations of the current, the optical output can be made to vary at extremely high speeds. This very property of optical current is used in Li-Fi setup. The operational procedure is very simple-, if the LED is on, you transmit a digital 1 if it’s off you transmit a 0. The LEDs can be switched on and off very quickly, which gives nice opportunities for transmitting data. Hence all that is required is some LEDs and a controller that code data into those LEDs. All one has to do is to vary the rate at which the LED’s flicker depending upon the data we want to encode.

Pros:

  1. Li-Fi can solve problems related to the insufficiency of radio frequency bandwidth because this technology uses Visible light spectrum that has still not been greatly utilized.
  2. High data transmission rates of up to 10Gbps can be achieved.
  3. Since light cannot penetrate walls, it provides privacy and security that Wi-Fi cannot.
  4. Li-Fi has low implementation and maintenance costs.
  5. Can be used in RF restricted environments where EM waves are restricted.
  6. By not using radio and serving same use case, it eases out interference and congestion of highly occupied radio bands i.e. ISM band used popularly in WPAN technologies.

Cons:

  1. Light can’t pass through objects.
  2. A major challenge Li-Fi is facing; how the receiving device will transmit back to the transmitter.
  3. Interference from external light sources like sun, light, normal bulbs, opaque materials.
  4. The line of Sight requirement, so area coverage is limited and indoor mostly.