By October 20, 2013 0 Comments Read More →

Scientists Invent Lightbulbs That Emit Wi-Fi

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Scientists in China have recently invented a WiFi-emitting lightbulb which has been dubbed “LiFi”. The term was originally coined by Harald Haas from the University of Edinburgh in the UK, to refer to the concept theoretically, but now that the idea has moved to practical and experimental phases of development, the term has gained some traction.

Chi Nan, an information technology professor at Shanghai’s Fudan University explained with this “LiFi,” four computers can effectively connect to a one-watt LED lightbulb. The LiFi bulbs are using light as a carrier instead of the traditional radio frequencies utilized by WiFi.

The lightbulb works through an embedded microchips that produces data rates “as fast as 150 megabits per second.” This is faster than the average broadband connection in China today according to Chi Nan.

“With LiFi cost-effective as well as efficient, netizens should be excited to view 10 sample LiFi kits that will be on display at the China International Industry Fair that will kick off on Nov. 5 in Shanghai,” according to China’s Xin Hua Net.

“As for cell phones, millions of base stations have been established around the world to strengthen the signal but most of the energy is consumed on their cooling systems. The energy utilization rate is only 5 percent,” she continued.

China has been rapidly replacing incandescent bulbs with LED lightbulbs.

“Wherever there is an LED lightbulb, there is an Internet signal,” Chi explained. “Turn off the light and there is no signal.”

The only problem? “If the light is blocked, then the signal will be cut off,” she continued.

 

The LiFi still has this and some minor microchip design and manufacturing kinks to work out, but scientists are confident that in the not-so-distant future, LiFi will leave our current WiFi technology in the dust.

(Article by James Achisa; image via Shutterstock)

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