LiFi Standardization Status and Evolution

Standards are an important prerequisite for mass deployment of communication technologies. As Light Communications is able to serve a wide variety of applications, a single standard is not sufficient to allow for high-performance cost-optimized solutions for all cases.
After a first light communications standard initiated in 2008 and ratified in 2011 through IEEE Std 802.15.7-2011, LC standardization further evolved to cover the various deployment domains. Parallel to past and ongoing enhancements of 802.15.7, IEEE P802.15.13 addresses high speed light communication needs with up to 10 Gb/s over distances of up to 200m unrestricted line. It leverages latest technologies like distributed MU-MIMO and offers different PHY modes for data rates of up to 2.2 Gb/s per stream.

To address the real mass market, IEEE 802.11 complements Wi-Fi with a LC interface through P802.11bb. The specification mostly leverages existing IEEE 802.11ax/Wi-Fi 6 capabilities to minimize efforts for LiFi chip implementations, an to facilitate easy adoption of LiFi to common applications through inheritance of the Wi-Fi system layer.
Aside of IEEE, the ITU-T SG15/Q18 amended its home networking standard G.hn with a light communication variant closely following the base specifications G.9960 to G.9964. The LC amendment G.9991 adopts basic architecture, the principal design of the OFDM-based PHY, the data-link layer, and the management interface from the base specifications and amended a second PHY mode based on Asymmetrically Clipped Optical OFDM that better adapts to the nature of light. Port based access control according to IEEE 802.1X, and enhanced mobility support were added to better support larger deployments.

Current light communication standards already fulfill many of the requirements covered through the 5th generation mobile communication system (5G) and can be leveraged with current 3GPP specifications to provide 5G services over light communication. However, further standardization is required to fully leverage the capabilities of light communications for use cases and requirements that are currently outside of the possibilities of wireless interfaces.

A presentation by Max Riegel, Nokia Standards – Senior Standards Specialist at Nokia.

The view of the Speaker

Question 1: What drives you?
Bringing humanity forward through leading edge telecommunications

Question 2: Why should the delegate attend your session?
Understand the relevance of standards to make markets happen

Question 3: What emerging technologies / trends do you see as having the greatest potential in the short and long run?
On the short hand, energy consumption is the biggest challenge, and on the long run, privacy will become the driving force of developments.

Question 4: What kind of impact do you expect them to have?
Traditional criteria like performance or reach are becoming secondary.

Question 5: What are the barriers that might stand in the way?
The huge installed base and established behaviors will cause lengthy transition periods.

About Max Riegel
Max Riegel (maximilian.riegel@nokia.com) received his Dipl.-Ing. degree in Electrical Engineering from TU Munich, Germany and is currently responsible for IEEE & Wi-Fi standardization within Nokia.
He participies in IEEE 802 and other Wi-Fi related standardization for more than 20 years and led the development of IEEE 802.1CF-2019 specification. He was NWG vice chair in the WiMAX Forum, led the Ethernet over cellular work in IETF 16ng WG, and chaired the OmniRAN SG/TG activities in IEEE 802. He regularly acts as lecturer for Wi-Fi and as speaker at technical conferences. Formerly, he held R&D management positions within Siemens Communications and Philips Communication Industry.

About Nokia
Nokia creates technology that helps the world act together. As a trusted partner for critical networks, Nokia is committed to innovation and technology leadership across mobile, fixed and cloud networks. It creates value with intellectual property and long-term research, led by the award-winning Nokia Bell Labs. Adhering to the highest standards of integrity and security, Nokia helps to build the capabilities needed for a more productive, sustainable and inclusive world.

Max Riegel is speaker at the 2022 edition of LiFi Conference.

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