Integrated transceivers for optical wireless communications

Dominic C. O'Brien, Grahame E. Faulkner, Emmanuel B. Zyambo, Kalok Jim, David J. Edwards, Paul Stavrinou, Gareth Parry, Jacques Bellon, Martin J. Sibley, Vinod A. Lalithambika, Valencia M. Joyner, Rina J. Samsudin, David M. Holburn, Robert J. Mears

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)


Line-of-sight free-space optical links can provide extremely high bandwidth communications, but this usually requires that transmitter and receiver are precisely aligned. In order to allow terminals to be mobile, links must be able to track users within their field of view so that the link is maintained. There are various means to do this, but all require complex subsystems with a number of different optical, optoelectronic, and electrical components. In this paper, a solid-state tracking architecture is introduced and a seven-channel tracking system demonstration described. The system is designed to operate at 155 Mb/s and is, to the best of our knowledge, the first that uses an integrated approach. Arrays of novel resonant cavity LED (RCLED) emitters that operate at 980 nm are used as sources. These are flip-chip bonded to arrays of CMOS driver circuits and integrated with the necessary transmitter optics. The receiver uses a back-illuminated detector array flip-chip bonded to arrays of custom CMOS receivers. All these components are custom and have performance substantially better than nonoptimized commercially available components. In the paper, the design and fabrication of the optics, optoelectronics, and electronics required for this is described. Successful operation of all the subsystems is detailed, together with results from an initial link demonstration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-183
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Journal on Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2005


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