The success of VCSEL technology in numerous communication and sensing applications has led to the use of VCSELs in a wide range of emerging markets. Some of these applications include:
Video: By increasing HDMI, DVI, and DisplayPort interface range and bandwidth to several 10’s of Gbps over multimode fibre, VCSELs make possible high-resolution (4K or Retina resolutions), fast frame-rate, and 3D video in a wide range of display applications.
Remote Power: For many sensing applications, it is impractical to run electrical wiring. Such systems can alternatively use a light source to deliver energy to a sensor optically. With a VCSEL-based implementation, systems are able to achieve remote power up to 10’s of mW CW while simultaneously transferring data over a single fibre.
High-Power: Many applications require high power output, including Lidar, illumination, night vision, aerospace, and line-of-sight communication links operating at 3 Gbps and higher. For these applications, multi-element VCSEL arrays can achieve more than 1 W of CW optical power. They also maintain beam quality and low facet power density while providing high wallplug efficiency.
Atomic Clocks: VCSELs enable the miniaturization of atomic clock technology, reducing the form factor of a cesium or rubidium atomic clock down to a chip scale package. Combined with significant power savings, lower cost, and portability, chip scale atomic clocks (CSAC) can be introduced to a wide range of new applications.
Atomic Clocks Form Factor Evolution from Blade Server to Chip
GPS: In locations where Global Positioning System (GPS) signals are impaired, position data can be more quickly and accurately determined by sourcing timing information from a local VCSEL-based clock rather than remotely from GPS satellites.
Magnetometers: Highly precise detection of magnetic fields is possible using the same components and principles as a VCSEL-based atomic clock. This technology could be used to substantially increase sensitivity and range of various sensors used in applications as diverse as underground and underwater metal detection to detecting and locating a human heart beat at far distances.
Proximity Sensing: Using scattered light techniques, proximity can be measured by transmitting light and sensing reflections from nearby objects. With their more narrow divergence and faster rise/fall time compared to LEDs, VCSELs can achieve more granular peak power with faster pulsing for superior power efficiency.
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