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This paper describes an optical wireless system based on time-hopping spread-spectrum techniques, as a first approach, at infrared wavelengths. It can be used either for low-speed sensor interconnections or as a return channel in a visible light communications system. The main advantage of this scheme is an improvement in the narrowband interference rejection capability and the number of simultaneous users supported, compared with other wireless optical standards. Moreover, a wide analysis is carried out about the mutual interference between time-hopping spread-spectrum systems and other infrared ones. Finally, some conclusions are drawn about some design parameters of the time-hopping system in order to allow its compatibility with preexisting optical devices.