What is the term optical wireless communication? According to my point of view, in optical communication there msut be a medium so the refractive index should be capable of keeping the wave inside the medium. Can you explain it?

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ think of a flashlight sending morse code \$\endgroup\$
    – jsotola
    Nov 23, 2023 at 7:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ What if the medium is air? \$\endgroup\$
    – Justme
    Nov 23, 2023 at 8:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ Fiber optics + wireless \$\endgroup\$
    – Antonio51
    Nov 23, 2023 at 9:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ You should have a look to technologies such as Lifi \$\endgroup\$
    – Bibibou
    Nov 23, 2023 at 10:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free-space_optical_communication \$\endgroup\$
    – Attie
    Nov 23, 2023 at 13:12

1 Answer 1


There's no reason why optical communication needs to be fibre optic.

Sending Morse code using an Aldis lamp is a form of wireless optical communication. For computers, IrDA was an early protocol, using infra-red LEDs to communicate between laptop computers and peripherals. More recently, LiFi has been put forward as a way to communicate around an office space - the computers and routers flicker bright LEDs at a rate too high for the human eye to percieve.


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