Visible Light Communication

Project Members

Stefan Schmid (Disney Research Zurich)
Manuela Hitz (Disney Research Zurich)
Giorgio Corbellini (Disney Research Zurich)
Thomas Richner (ETH Zurich)
Josef Ziegler (ETH Zurich)
Theodoros Bourchas (ETH Zurich)
Thomas R. Gross (ETH Zurich)
Stefan Mangold (Disney Research Zurich)

Visible Light Communication Testbed

Visible Light Communication Testbed.

Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are used in consumer electronics, toys, light bulbs, cars, and monitors. With LEDs, it is possible to control light brightness at a frequency much higher than conventional light bulbs: LEDs can be switched on and off at very high rates. As result, LED-based lighting can be used for wireless communication services by modulating the intensity of the emitted light. Further, LEDs can also be used as receivers just like photodiodes. We call this concept Visible Light Communication (VLC) with LED-to-LED networking. Significant research contributions have been achieved by Disney Research in the area of networked systems for VLC. VLC creates opportunities for low-cost, safe, and environmentally friendly wireless communication solutions. We focus on connected toys and light bulb networks. Our work targets a full system design that spans from hardware prototypes to communication protocols, and applications.

 

vlc_testbed
LED-to-LED Software Protocol
LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication allows interaction between toys by only using LEDs: an LED is used to transmit and to receive data messages. No dedicated hardware is required. When multiple devices are networked with each other, we organize the communication with our software protocols.

 

vlc_princess
Magic Princess Dress
A magic wand with an LED magically triggers light effects on a princess dress. Many LEDs are embedded into the dress. When the magic wand is pointed towards the dress, it comes to life at exactly this location, because all LEDs can receive from the wand.

 

 

vlc_smartphone

 

Toy and Smartphone
Communication between smartphones and toys can be achieved using VLC by using the toy LEDs and the phone’s camera, display, and flashlight. The phone sends messages with the flashlight and receives messages from the LEDs with the camera.

 

 

vlc_cars

 

Car-to-Car Communication
Low-cost toy cars use LEDs to create illumination and lighting effects. Using these LEDs, cars can communicate with each other, based on our LED-to-LED microcontroller software. The brightness of an LED is modulated faster than human eye sensitivity to transmit and receive light messages without flickering.

 

 



Publications

EnLighting- An Indoor Visible Light Communication System based on Networked Light Bulbs-Thumbnail

EnLighting: An Indoor Visible Light Communication System based on Networked Light Bulbs
June 27, 2016
International Conference on Sensing, Communication and Networking (SECON) 2016
Paper File [pdf, 8.70 MB]

Linux Light Bulbs- Enabling Internet Protocol Connectivity for Light Bulb Networks-Thumbnail

Linux Light Bulbs: Enabling Internet Protocol Connectivity for Light Bulb Networks
September 7, 2015
Workshop on Visible Light Communication Systems (VLCS) 2015
Paper File [pdf, 3.02 MB]

From Sound to Sight- Using Audio Processing to enable Visible Light Communication-Thumbnail

From Sound to Sight: Using Audio Processing to enable Visible Light Communication
December 8, 2014
Workshop on Optical Wireless Communications 2014
Paper File [pdf, 1.56 MB]

Continuous Synchronization for LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication Networks-Thumbnail

Continuous Synchronization for LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication Networks
September 17, 2014
International Workshop on Optical Wireless (IWOW) 2014
Paper File [pdf, 1.60 MB]

Using Consumer LED Light Bulbs for Low-Cost Visible Light Communication Systems-Thumbnail

Using Consumer LED Light Bulbs for Low-Cost Visible Light Communication Systems
September 7, 2014
Workshop on Visible Light Communication Systems (VLCS) 2014
Paper File [pdf, 3.88 MB]

Pub_InvisibleLightCommunication_Siggraph14_thumbnail

(In)visible Light Communication: Combining Illumination and Communication
August 10, 2014
ACM SIGGRAPH Emerging Technologies 2014
Paper File [pdf, 5.86 MB]

Connecting Networks of Toys and Smartphones with Visible Light Communication-Thumbnail

Connecting Networks of Toys and Smartphones with Visible Light Communication
July 1, 2014
IEEE Communications Magazine 2014
Paper File [pdf, 319.52 KB]

LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication Networks-Thumbnail

LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication Networks
August 1, 2013
ACM International Symposium on Mobile Ad Hoc Networking and Computing (ACM MobiHoc) 2013
Paper File [pdf, 1.69 MB]

An LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication System with Software-Based Synchronization-Thumbnail

An LED-to-LED Visible Light Communication System with Software-Based Synchronization
December 3, 2012
IEEE Globecom 2012
Paper File [pdf, 178.77 KB]

Networking Smart Toys with Wireless ToyBridge and ToyTalk-Thumbnail

Networking Smart Toys with Wireless ToyBridge and ToyTalk
April 10, 2011
IEEE Conference on Computer Communication (IEEE Infocom) 2011
Paper File [pdf, 449.10 KB]

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