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Optical MEMS Communication Link

MOICS communication: This test bed demonstrates bidirectional half-duplex communication from an interrogating transceiver (laser and photoreceptor) to a MOICS CCR unit and back.

The Tanner MEMS-Based Optical Identification and Communication System (MOICS) provides secure bidirectional half-duplex communication between an interrogator unit and a remote unit that includes a corner-cube reflector (CCR).

First, the interrogator transmits a modulated laser beam that encodes information (e.g., "Who goes there?"). The remote unit demodulates and decodes the signal.

Communication from interrogator to remote unit

Next, the interrogator transmits a modulated carrier beam (a raw uplink "supply" beam) that impinges on the remote unit CCR. The remote unit controller toggles the base mirror of the CCR, thereby adding further modulation () and the remote unit data () to the beam reflected back to the interrogator. The interrogator extracts and decodes the data by isolating signals with the carrier modulation () from other light sources such as the sun, and isolating signals with the CCR modulation (), to filter out reflections of the laser off of objects other than the CCR.

Communication from remote unit to interrogator

Check out our interactive communication demo! (Requires Java-enabled browser; size is 450 KB.)

This research has been sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).


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