High bandwidth GaN-based micro-LEDs for multi-Gbps visible light communications

Ricardo X. G. Ferreira, Enyuan Xie, Jonathan J. D. Mckendry, Sujan Rajbhandari, Hyunchae Chun, Grahame Faulkner, Scott Watson, Anthony E. Kelly, Erdan Gu, Richard V. Penty, Ian H. White, Dominic C. O'Brien, Martin D. Dawson

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Gallium-nitride (GaN) based light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are highly-efficient sources for general purpose illumination. Furthermore, being semiconductor-based light sources, they are readily compatible with intelligent drive electronics. Visible light communications (VLC) is a technology which leverages these advantageous properties of GaN LEDs and can supplement existing wireless communications by offering a large, licence-free spectral bandwidth. Here we report on progress in the development of micro-scale GaN LEDs (micro-LEDs), optimised for VLC. These blue-emitting micro-LEDs are shown to have very high electrical-to-optical modulation bandwidths, exceeding 800~MHz. The data transmission capabilities of the micro-LEDs are illustrated by demonstrations using on-off-keying (OOK), pulse-amplitude modulation (PAM) and orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) modulation schemes to transmit data over free space at rates of 1.7, 3.4 and 5 Gb/s, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2023-2026
Number of pages4
JournalIEEE Photonics Technology Letters
Issue number19
Early online date15 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jul 2016


  • bandwidth
  • micro light-emitting diodes
  • GaN
  • optical communication
  • visible light-communication
  • OFDM
  • PAM
  • Gallium-nitride
  • bit error rate
  • current density
  • data communication
  • light emitting diodes
  • modulation


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  • IEEE Photonics Technology Letters Best Paper Award

    McKendry, Jonathan (Recipient), Ferreira, Ricardo (Recipient), Xie, Enyuan (Recipient), Rajbhandari, Sujan (Recipient), Chun, Hyunchae (Recipient), Faulkner, Graheme (Recipient), Watson, Scott (Recipient), Kelly, Anthony (Recipient), Gu, Erdan (Recipient), Penty, R.V. (Recipient), White, Ian H. (Recipient), O'Brien, Dominic (Recipient) & Dawson, Martin (Recipient), 15 Jun 2019

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

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