Scientists twist radio beams to send data: Transmissions reach speeds of 32 gigibits per second

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Researchers twist four radio beams together to achieve high data transmission speeds. The researchers reached data transmission rates of 32 gigabits per second across 2.5 meters of free space in a basement lab. For reference, 32 gigabits per second is fast enough to transmit more than 10 hour-and-a-half-long HD movies in one second and is 30 times faster than LTE wireless.
Graphic showing the intensity of the radio beams after twisting.

Building on previous research that twisted light to send data at unheard-of speeds, scientists at USC have developed a similar technique with radiowaves, reaching high speeds without some of the hassles that can go with optical systems.

The researchers, led by electrical engineering professor Alan Willner of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering, reached data transmission rates of 32 gigabits per second across 2.5 meters of free space in a basement lab at USC.

For reference, 32 gigabits per…

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