The future of wireless broadband is here, and it may or may not give you a headache. The flicker in your office lighting may someday soon be caused by data transmissions and not faulty fluorescent bulbs.

Professional Engineering reports that researchers at the University of Edinburgh have developed a wireless networking system that can handle up to 130 megabits per second of data transfer using light instead of radio waves. The system, dubbed “Li-Fi,” uses LEDs to transmit data to photo-sensor receivers by making changes in the intensity of light that researchers claim are so fast they are imperceptible to the human eye.

Harald Haas, a German physicist and the University of Edinburgh’s professor of mobile communications, told Professional Engineering that his incubator company Pure VLC was developing a “smart lighting” kit that would make it possible to use existing lighting systems to transmit and receive data, reaching network speeds of up to 50 megabits per second.  He added that he and his team were working in the lab to develop a Li-Fi system that could handle up to a gigabit per second of network traffic.

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via Ars Technica » Technology Lab