Optical Communication

Steering an optical signal without wires

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Science  15 Aug 2014:
Vol. 345, Issue 6198, pp. 783
DOI: 10.1126/science.345.6198.783-d

All wireless communications—radio, cell phones, wi-fi, or anything else—need reliable links between transmitters and receivers. In general, higher-frequency bands can convey more information than lower-frequency ones. Using a patterned array of tiny metallic nanoantennas, Dregely et al. show that they can steer an optical beam wirelessly from a transmitter to any one of a number of receivers. Because light has such high frequencies, these kinds of directed wireless optical channels should be able to transmit even greater amounts of information than devices using more traditional, longer-wavelength approaches.

Nat. Commun. 10.1038/ncomms5354 (2014).

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