Move to launch Li-Fi technology in KOM

Knowledge Oasis Muscat (KOM), the technology arm of the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE), is undertaking significant efforts to launch Li-Fi technology in KOM in cooperation with AASA, Inc., a USA-based innovative technology company.

Nasser al Malki, Acting Director-General of Knowledge Oasis Muscat informed that KOM’s management is currently working on inking an agreement to bring this technology to the Knowledge Oasis Muscat. Through the Memorandum of Understanding, Proof of Concept (PoC) will be determined for the use, installation and operation of this technology in KOM.
Al Malki explained that Visible Light Communication (VLC) is an innovative wireless communication technology offering high bandwidth, immunity to interference from electromagnetic sources, and high levels of communication security.
“The latest advances in the field of solid state lighting, and the inevitable replacement of florescent lighting by Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), will facilitate the deployment of VLC technology. The use of bidirectional VLC through LEDs is referred to as Li-Fi. Li-Fi relieves the load of existing RF and microwave wireless networks by powering visible photons for light generation and optical communication alike. Some advantages of VLC/Li-Fi, when compared to current wireless technologies, are network security, worldwide availability, unlicensed spectrum (high speed and high capacity), low power consumption, and the lack of electromagnetic interference,” he pointed out.
He added that VLC could also be used for accurate positioning, which enables indoor navigation and an enhanced consumer experience in multitude of possible applications such as retail stores, airport, museums, among many others. The high positioning accuracy based on VLC, makes it possible to use the technology as a much cheaper alternative for Virtual Reality (VR) an Augmented Reality applications.

On his part, Farid Bichareh, Chief Technology Officer of AASA, elaborated on Li-Fi as an innovative wireless communication for the connected world. He emphasises on how the world is experiencing an exponential increase in the demand for wireless data communication, particularly with the introduction of the Smart Cities and IoT concepts.
“This increased demand for wireless data communication is making it necessary to find alternatives to Wi-Fi and Radio Frequency (RF) communication,” he said, adding: “Visible Light Communication (VLC), which is also referred to as Li-Fi, is an ideal new innovative technology to address this new demand with particular emphasis for its applications in the Oil and Gas industry. Additionally, AASA VLC/Li-Fi enabled solutions could be tailored for the Oil and Gas industry.”
Bichareh noted that AASA designs and integrates innovative IT and communications solutions to provide Information Management & Information Technology Services, as well as Engineering, Management and Commercialisation Services and consultant to the US Government, Corporate Clients, Start Ups and Small Businesses.
“AASA subsidiary, 01Lightcom, specialises in Visible Light Communication and Li-FI technology and solutions, and some of the VLC products were introduced in prominent technology exhibitions around the World such as the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, and the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona. Additionally, AASA has established partnerships with cutting edge VLC/Li-Fi technology developers around the world, and has the ability and flexibility to tailor its VLC/Li-Fi solution to the client needs,” he added.
By bringing Li-Fi technology, the Knowledge Oasis Muscat aims at enhancing the incentives for investors including the accessibility of necessary ICT infrastructure, which plays an important role in attracting private companies and entrepreneurs from inside and outside the Sultanate. Through the Knowledge Oasis Muscat, PEIE aims to establish an integrated society in which institutions in different fields of ICT and advanced industries coexist.
This will eventually play a role in enhancing the knowledge development drive in the Sultanate, in addition to providing comprehensive and distinctive services to meet the needs of individuals and institutions in KOM in a fast and efficient manner. KOM aims at creating, promoting and developing Oman as a robust, diverse, prosperous and self-sustaining knowledge-driven economy.