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Multi-Element Free-Space Optical (FSO) Modules for Mobile-Opportunistic Networking

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Technical Report,01 Aug 2014,31 Jul 2016

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University of Nevada - Reno Reno United States

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As the RF spectrum is getting scarcer, there is an urgent need for innovations that will allow new and complementary wireless spectrum bands in both military and civilian settings. Recent research has shown that free-space-optical FSO, a.k.a. optical wireless, communications is a promising complementary approach to address the exploding mobile wireless traffic demand. The major impediment for using FSO in a mobile setting is the line-of-sight LOS alignment requirement. Our existing efforts have pointed to the possibility of employing FSO within the context of mobile ad-hoc networking by handling its mobility and range issues via multi-element and multi-hop designs. Since optical wireless spectrum allows high data bandwidth at least Mbps when LOS occurs, a promising approach is to opportunistically leverage it with fast acquisition of FSO links. In earlier work, we produced a proof-of-concept prototype of an LOS alignment protocol that can electronically steer data transmissions over mobile multi-transceiver spherical modules. The goal of this project was to execute an instrumentation program that will enable us to improve our existing FSO prototype modules to low power consuming, miniature devices with high data transfer rates.

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  • Non-Radio Communications

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