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Researchers transmit data via a semiconductor laser, opening the door to ultra-high-speed Wi-Fi



 The first laser radio transmitter
This device uses a frequency comb laser to emit and modulate microwaves wirelessly. The laser uses different frequencies of light. The researchers use this phenomenon to send a song wirelessly to a receiver. Credit: Marco Piccardo / Harvard SEAS
            

You've never heard of Dean Martin like this.
                                               

Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences has received a recording of Martin's classic "Volare" wirelessly via a semiconductor laser-the first time a laser has been used as a radio frequency transmitter.

In Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences the researchers present a laser that can emit microwaves wirelessly, modulate them, and receive external radio frequency signals.

"The research opens the door to New types of hybrid electronic-photonic devices and the first step toward ultra-high-speed Wi-Fi, "said Federico Capasso, the Robert L. Wallace Professor of Applied Physics and Vinton Hayes's Senior Research Fellow in Electrical Engineering, at SEAS and senior author of the study.

This research builds on the previous work from the Capasso Lab. In 201

7, the researchers discovered that the infrared spectrum combos in a quantum cascade laser could become terahertz frequencies, the sub-millimeter wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum that could move faster than today's wireless platforms. In 2018, the team found that quantum cascade laser frequency combs could also act as integrated transmitters or receivers to efficiently encode information.

Now, the researchers have come to the same conclusion ] Unlike conventional lasers, which emit a single frequency of light, laser frequency combs simultaneously with multiple frequencies, evenly spaced to resemble the teeth of a comb. In 2018, the researchers discovered that the different frequencies of the light beat together to generate microwave radiation.

"If you want to use this device for Wi-Fi, you need to know how to use it." Microwave signals and extract from the device, "said Marco Piccardo, postdoctoral fellow at SEAS and first author of the paper.

The first thing needed to transmit signals to an antenna. So, the researchers etched a gap into the top electrode of the device, creating a dipole antenna (like the rabbit ears on top of an old TV). Next, they modulated the frequency comb to encode information on the microwave radiation created by the beating light of the comb. Then, using the antenna, the microwaves are radiated out of the device, containing the encoded information.

The researchers said that the radio signal was received by a horn antenna.

"This all-in-one integrated device holds great promise for wireless communication," Piccardo said.

The Harvard Office of Technology Development has published an article on "Exploring Commercialization Opportunities." ,
                                                                                                                        


Laser frequency combs may be the future of Wi-Fi


More information:
Marco Piccardo et al. Radio frequency transmitter based on a laser frequency comb, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (2019). DOI: 10.1073 / pnas.1903534116

Provided by
Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences




Citation :
                                                 Researchers transmit data via a semiconductor laser, opening the door to ultra-high-speed Wi-Fi (2019, April 25)
                                                 retrieved 25 April 2019
                                                 from https://phys.org/news/2019-04-transmit-semiconductor-laser-door-ultra-high-speed.html
                                            

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