Europeans working on wireless ‘speedier than 4G’

A European Union (EU) funded project called IPHOBAC is working on new technology that has the potential to deliver wireless data at speeds of up to 12.5Gb/s, according to ScienceDaily.

The speed will surpass current 3G and 4G speeds, which many countries have still yet to migrate to. It was claimed that the millmetre (mm)-wave' or microwave photonics' would have commercial applications not only in telecommunications, but fields such as radio, security and radar.

The technology is made possible by combining radio and optic technology. The mm-wave band is the extreme high-end of the radio spectrum, from 30 to 300 gigahertz (GHz), which has not been fully exploited until now.

According to project coordinator Andreas Stohr, the technology can be harnessed for ultra-fast wireless data transfer over telecom networks with data rates of up to 12.5Gb/s over short to medium range wireless spans - or 1500 times the speed of upcoming 4G mobile networks.

Stohr said it could even be used to support fast broadband to remote areas. He told ScienceDaily: "You can have your fibre in the ground delivering 10Gb/s, but we can deliver this by air to remote areas where there is no fibre or to bridge gaps in fibre networks."

IPHOBAC was also reported to be developing systems for space applications, and that there were also talks going on with telecom companies like Siemens, Ericsson and Thales.