LONDON Researchers at the University of Essex are claiming a world record for the amount of computer data sent over a point-to-point wireless channel. The results achieved by the team from the Department of Electronic Systems Engineering are the equivalent of more than 162,000 phone calls or over 10,000 broadband internet connections being made simultaneously.
The Essex team succeeded in transmitting 10.4 Gigabits of data over a 60m line-of-sight span; a typical distance in the urban distribution point to home environment in the UK. Greater distances should be possible and are the subject of further investigation.
The experiments were carried out using an array of three in-house designed patch antennas covering a band from just below 2GHz up to just above 7GHz. The 10.4Gbit date rate was comprised of concurrent 1.2, 1.6 and 2.4Gbit channels combined with polarisation-based frequency reuse. A complete carrier and data synchronisation subsystem was also constructed so largely error-free performance could be demonstrated.
While the techniques used by the Essex group don’t fit exactly to the MultiBand Alliance template in the IEEE 802.15 ultra-wideband radio standardisation process, they could be important in showing that 10 Gigabit radio is feasible. The experiment at Essex demonstrates that greater capacity could be obtained from present generation wireless links given appropriate standardisation.
The latest record-breaking results came at the end of a two-year project by MSc student Terry Quinlan, part of precursor work which will be further enhanced by a recently-announced £1 million Higher Education Funding Council for England equipment award.
In 2001, researchers in the Essex Department of Electronics Systems Engineering department achieved a world record for the amount of computer data sent over a single multimode optical fibre, which won them a slot in the Guinness Book of Records.