Underwater wireless optical networks suffer from significant attenuation due to high absorption and scattering of the optical transmission in the water.
This limits the effective range of optical links and increases latency. But secure, wireless, high-data-rate transmission of information is becoming increasingly important for undersea applications that include defense, environmental monitoring, petroleum engineering, and unmanned underwater vehicle communications.
Given the high potential for attenuation due to turbidity and other interferences, wavelength optimization is critical to the achievement of effective, reliable underwater optical communication.
To address the above issues, Navy researchers have developed a spectroscopy system specific for optimizing underwater wireless optical communication networks. The system uses several beams of deferring wavelength and selects an optimal wavelength based on a comparison to a reference signal. The system is dynamic in that it can actively monitor attenuation and change wavelengths to accommodate losses. All system components are co-located.
- Could replace acoustic technology as the underwater wireless communication of choice
- System has been designed to be easy to manufacture and cost effective
- Enables data security not capable with acoustic communication systems
- US patent 9,647,771 available for license
- Potential for collaboration with Navy researchers