Chair of Information and Coding Theory

Journal Publication on Optical Underwater Communications

Oct 19, 2018

J. Sticklus, P. A. Hoeher, and R. Röttgers, "Optical underwater communication: The potential of using converted green LEDs in coastal waters," IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering, vol. 44, no. 2, pp. 535-547, Apr. 2019. DOI

Abstract

Compared to the open ocean where blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs) perform well for data communications, in coastal and harbor environments optical transmission becomes worse and the color of lowest attenuation shifts to green. Another problem concerns the “green–yellow gap” of LEDs, as the quantum efficiency of current commercially available green LEDs is poor. Since energy consumption is an important factor, particularly for battery-powered systems, using blue LEDs is a tradeoff. Recently, phosphor-converted green LEDs, which are pumped by highly efficient blue LEDs, have been introduced to the market, and this type of LED promises better performance. This paper compares the use of blue, green, and converted green LEDs for applications in optical underwater communication systems in coastal waters. Theoretical aspects of the overall LED-water-detector channel are presented. A method for determining individual system coefficients is developed, and the impact on the communication system performance is explained. Practical approaches are introduced, complemented by measurements in the Baltic Sea.