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A high-speed wireless system (≥100 Mb/s) for indoor infrared (IR) communications via the line of sight is described and feasibility is shown in an experimental demonstrator. A diffuse link is used for connectivity, and tracked directed links are used for high-speed communications. The transmitter is made of a laser diode array in combination with multiple-beam forming optics. For the receiver (Rx), a wide-angle lens, and an avalanche photodiode array are used. For the diffuse link, the signals from all pixels in the array are combined. Pixels are selectively addressed to realize directed links. Fast electronic tracking of a directed link is possible by switching the signal path onto the right pixel in the array. Diffuse link, directed link, position detection, and tracking can be realized with one and the same transceiver hardware. A favorite system design is derived from constraints due to the IR channel, eye safety, lenses, photodetectors, and the overall system complexity. The experimental system shows some key features, namely 155-Mb/s wireless transmission over a distance of nearly 2 m with electronic tracking at an imaging IR Rx. Electronic tracking of IR links, thus, allows both high data rates and high capacity for wireless access in small office and home environments.
Date of Publication: Sept. 2003