The world is waitingTICK TOCK
for new technologies
People are increasingly greedy for bandwidth and the demand for ultra-fast communication is pushing radiofrequencies to the limit.
Technology is ready to provide game-changing services that could improve everybody’s life quality to unprecedented levels. Unfortunately, our current communication infrastructure is simply not ready. We are here to change that.
Free-space light communication is on its wayRF MUST GO
The answer to the problems of RF lies in exploring the last missing part of the electromagnetic spectrum: light. This was already attempted for cabled networks and today fiber optics represent the state of the art in wired communication.
The next step is to get rid of fibre optics and use light for open field transmissions. This is what it’s all about.
Let's get technical
How does light communication work?HOW
Just like current technologies require antennas to transmit and receive radiofrequency signals, light communication requires a source and a receiver of light waves.
In most cases the source of light waves can be a simple low power LED but there are applications that employ other sources such as OLED, neon tubes, voltaic arcs and other plasma sources or even altered natural light.
Any data or information can be encoded into the light signal, using different systems and techniques. Most of our systems currently work with light beams pulsed with specific modulations but Slux has the know-how to develop different codifications and algorithms of transmission or cryptation.
The light signal is generated and can travel freely both indoor or outdoor, allowing the receiver device to catch it and decode the information.
LiFi technologyLIGHT FIDELITY
LiFi means “light fidelity” and it is a form of bidirectional, networked, mobile, and high-speed wireless communications closely reminiscent of Wireless Fidelity (WiFi). Unlike WiFi, it is the first attempt to use visible light instead of the increasingly congested radio frequency spectrum.
The technology is still immature but shows promise of solving the challenges faced by 5G.
Visible light is intrinsically far less prone to interference. Nonetheless, the visible light spectrum is currently largely unused.
Faster than ever
Light communication can deliver speeds of multiple Gbps. This means we can open unprecedented possibilities for technology and services.
Light communication signals can be contained, delimited and secured within a physical area. This provides it with an intrinsic safety feature.
Safe for health
Light communication does not raise any health safety concern. Visible light does not carry any kind of hazard to living beings or devices.
The Slux ApproachOUR WAY
Achieving faster communication, overcoming frequencies saturation, solving security and health concerns was not enough. We wanted to explore the vast potential of light, solving existing issues and ensure the best possible user experience.
That’s why we focused on addressing seemingly minor issues such as the distance the signal can travel, the power required and how the signal behaves in the presence of obstacles.
We made the record
Distance of communication01
Anyone will tell you that transmitting a signal at 33 Km with a low power LED is impossible. Don’t believe them, because this is exactly what we have achieved.
Indoors we have achieved the great result of covering a range of ~10 metres but it is outdoors that our record is truly exceptional.
The English Channel experiment
It was the evening of 27 July 2016, Alessandro was stationed in Calais, ready to coordinate with his brother Damiano who was in Dover to try the transmission again.
The first night in fact, the police had arrived and the experiment had had to be cancelled. But then Alessandro took the ferry from France and walked over the cliffs to find a safe spot before returning to Calais. By eleven o’clock the transmitter was working, but the receiver was not. In the cold, with a torch, in the wind and in the middle of nowhere: midnight, one o’clock, two o’clock, three o’clock, still nothing.
“For a second I said to myself: mission failed. Then I took everything apart and put it back together again. It worked. I listened to my brother’s entire playlist.”
The transmission across the English Channel, from Calais to Dover (33 km), was incredibly realised with a visible light signal produced by a single 0.1 Watt LED.
This was a milestone for Slux’s outdoors light transmission system. And it is still an unbroken record today.
Forget about light cones
Working around corners and obstacles02
This is a sore point for any light-based transmission technology, including what we call LiFi.
Indeed, the most common limitation is the constraint of having to maintain optical visibility between the transmitter and the receiver.
This means that most VLC or LiFi systems will stop working when the devices are beyond the light cone produced by the signal source.
This is one of the major strengths of the Slux solution: our systems take full advantage of the reflection properties of light waves and allow the connection to be maintained even when there is no optical visibility between the devices.
Our light communication technology works around corners.
Sunlight is everywhere
Exploiting natural light03
Energy consumption and power requirements of communication systems are a key factor in the development of mobile and sustainable applications.
This is why we have gone beyond the imaginable. We have developed a transmission system that uses natural ambient light such as sunlight to encode data.
As simple as it is amazing, our prototype transmitter is able to collect ambient light, manipulate it to encode the data to be transmitted and return it to the environment for reception by devices within range.
In this way, the power of the signal emitted by the source can be greater than the power absorbed by the system in the form of electrical energy.