Transferring large image files or full-HD movie sequences from one device to another does not only take time but also a lot of patience. This can sometimes take several minutes for wired data transfer. "That has to go faster," said the researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Photonic Microsystems IPMS and developed a kind of motorway for data traffic that uses light as a transmission medium. Data can now be transmitted wirelessly at up to 5 Gbps.
To accelerate the wireless transfer of large amounts of data, Dr. med. Frank Deicke of the Fraunhofer IPMS set the goal. As an alternative to the common USB 3.0 standard, he therefore developed a communication module that allows a data transfer rate of up to 5 Gbit / s. Contrary to the general trend, he does not use wireless connections such as Bluetooth or WLAN, but uses optical wireless data transmission via infrared.
»The use of infrared light as a wireless transmission medium allows 100 to provide faster signal processing than currently available solutions, because the information does not have to be specially coded for radio transmission. In addition, the bit error rates are extremely low due to the optical link, so that net data rates of up to 95% of the theoretically possible are achieved. With Wi-Fi, these percentages are much lower, "explains Deicke, showing yet another advantage of infrared technology:
»The path over the light only needs 15% of energy per byte. This benefits especially mobile, battery-operated devices such as cell phones or digital cameras «. The only condition: Similar to the remote control, which also works with infrared, there must be a so-called 'line-of-sight' connection. This means that a clear view between sender and receiver is required. With Deicke's infrared communication module, the usual cable clutter could soon be replaced by a wireless high-speed connection, which transmits large image and music files or high-resolution film sequences with "speed of light" from one terminal to the other.
The possible fields of application of the infrared communication module range from the consumer sector to industrial applications. The Fraunhofer IPMS offers an evaluation kit, with which interested parties have the opportunity to evaluate optically wireless data transmission with data rates in the multi-gigabit range in their target system.