Edinburgh firm behind ‘game-changing’ light-transmitting tech secures major US deal

PureLiFi, the Edinburgh-based firm behind revolutionary technology that uses light to transmit data, will see its systems deployed on US navy and coast guard vessels after the signing of a new agreement that expands its reach in the world’s most lucrative defence market.

The three-year deal sees Fairbanks Morse Defense (FMD) become the exclusive reseller of the Scots company’s technology and products to FM OnBoard maritime defence customers in the US. “LiFi” is a mobile wireless technology that uses light rather than radio frequencies to transmit data. By harnessing the light spectrum, it is said to provide more reliable wireless communications with “unparalleled security”, compared to conventional technologies such as cellular, wi-fi and Bluetooth. The company’s Kitefin LiFi system is designed specifically for use in the defence industry.

Alistair Banham, chief executive of PureLiFi, said: “Fairbanks Morse Defense is quickly becoming known for its best-in-class maritime defence technology solutions, and we consider this to be an ideal collaboration for expanding our presence in the US. Our collaboration with FMD represents a significant step towards expanding LiFi technology beyond PureLiFi’s large scale land-based deployments. We look forward to working with FMD to deliver this game-changing LiFi technology to maritime defence customers.”

Prior to the agreement, the two firms worked together through the FM Defense Accelerator. The companies have been leveraging LiFi and FMD’s resources to co-develop and evaluate maritime use cases for LiFi technology.

George Whittier, chief executive of Fairbanks Morse Defense, added: “The ability to have secure connectivity while at sea is a mission-critical capability for our maritime defence customers. PureLiFi’s technology pairs perfectly with FM OnBoard, enabling technicians to securely communicate from the engine room with live, remote technicians who can help troubleshoot any issues.”

Last July, PureLiFi said it would target a global roll out after securing £10 million backing from the Scottish National Investment Bank. The investment was said to align with the Bank’s mission to invest in innovation and industries of the future, while creating high value jobs. The cash injection will enable the firm to further develop new technologies while opening up additional markets in areas such as mobile phones, tablets, wearables and other connected devices.

Pioneering LiFi professor selected as finalist for European Inventor Award 2023

Professor Harald Haas, co-founder of pureLiFi, has been nominated for the European Inventor Award in the Research Category for his pioneering work on LiFi.

Professor Harald Haas, Chief Scientific Officer and co-founder of pureLiFi Ltd, has been nominated for the European Inventor Award in the Research Category for his pioneering work on LiFi, the wireless optical communication technology that uses light to transmit data.

The European Inventor Award recognises inventors who have made significant contributions to technological progress, economic growth, and improvements to our daily lives. Professor Haas’ nomination is a recognition of the significant impact his work on LiFi has had on the field of communications.

LiFi is poised to play a critical role in the future of wireless communications and is seen as a promising candidate for the next generation of connectivity solutions. LiFi technology has already been deployed in a range of industries, including defence, industrial and manufacturing.

Commenting on the nomination, Alistair Banham, CEO of pureLiFi, congratulates Professor Haas, saying, “We are delighted to see Harald being recognised for his ground-breaking work on LiFi and contributing to IP driving innovation and the realisation of mass adoption of LiFi technology. He has been instrumental in developing and promoting this transformative technology after first introducing LiFi to the world in 2011.”

Professor Haas also expressed his gratitude for the nomination, saying, “I am honoured to be nominated for the European Inventor Award in the Research Category. This recognition is not only a personal achievement, but it also acknowledges the importance of LiFi to the communications and technology landscape. I hope that this nomination will help to bring even more attention to the potential of this technology.”

The winners of the European Inventor Award will be announced on July 4, 2023. Professor Haas’ nomination underscores the growing recognition of the potential of LiFi technology to transform the communications and technology landscape.

Professor Haas is a recognised expert in the field of wireless optical communications, hybrid optical wireless and RF communications. He holds 45 patents and his work has been cited more than 50,000 times and has been published in over 630 conference and journal papers.

Free-space optics sector will grow to $47.5 billion by 2027

Research firm Global Market Estimates forecasts that the value of the free-space optics sector will grow from $4.4 billion in 2022 to $47.5 billion by 2027, at a compound annual growth rate of 34.1%.

Optical free-space networks have a secure future in ground-to-space and space applications and companies in the market for the long run see considerable untapped potential in the terrestrial market as well.

Free-space optics (FSO) and systems are uniquely valuable in enabling fast and secure connectivity, both in terrestrial and nonterrestrial networks. With major advancements in space optics over the last 20 years, ultrahigh-bandwidth signals now regularly ping back and forth over great distances, providing a communications canopy that extends over the entire globe.

From transmitters to receivers and all the associated optics in between, each technological jump in the past two decades has helped make free-space communications cheaper, faster, easier to deploy and, ultimately, more commercially viable.

The insatiable call for faster, high-capacity communications and data rates guarantees a strong outlook for FSO. Although the Earth is better connected than ever before, the future is trending toward an increasingly pervasive Internet of Things that connects and communicates data to and from billions of devices — from cars and shipping containers to lighting and surveillance cameras, for example. FSO’s ability to extend data exchanges beyond cabled infrastructure will ensure that the technology plays a critical role.

Optical wireless communications technologies have already made great strides, particularly above the atmosphere, but also at ground level, where secure, high-bandwidth information transfer still has a way to go.

pureLiFi Launches Light Antenna ONE at MWC Barcelona

A global leader in LiFi technology, pureLiFi launched their latest Light Antenna Module at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.

The cutting-edge wireless communications antenna is the first of its kind, smaller than a US dime and ready to enable LiFi in connected devices and smartphones at scale. The module will be compliant with the upcoming IEEE 802.11bb Light Communication standard which is in its final stages of ratification.

“Our team of world leading LiFi engineers and experienced semiconductor veterans have produced a light antenna that will make connectivity better for everyone. This is not only a feat of engineering but a leap in commercial maturity. LiFi connectivity can now be made available at scale to device manufacturers that want to differentiate, develop new products and foster new markets with leading-edge connectivity,” says pureLiFi CEO, Alistair Banham.

A light antenna is the optoelectrical antenna that is designed to integrate just like a traditional RF antenna and enables LiFi in connected devices.

Light Antenna ONE is optimised for performance, size, cost, and production requirements of the market which will allow smartphone and connected device manufacturers to integrate LiFi at scale. Compliance with the upcoming IEEE 802.11bb standard means that LiFi will easily integrate with existing 802.11 WiFi networking equipment and also with 802.11 WiFi chipsets shipping in billions of devices each year.

US Photonics Market to Cross US$ 1.6 Trillion by 2033

The United States photonics market is anticipated to accelerate at 5.2% CAGR between 2023 and 2033, amid widening application in medical technology and defense. By 2033, the overall market size in the USA is set to reach US$ 268.4 billion.

Rising applications of photonics-enabled devices across sectors such as automotive, consumer electronics, medical devices, and defense is providing stimulus for the development of the global photonics market.

Photonics, of which light communication technology is part of, is playing a key role in triggering innovations across various fields. From lighting and displays to optical data communications and life science, the application area of photonics continues to expand rapidly.Advancements in photonics have paved way for the development of photonic devices which are used in light emitting diodes, displays, laser devices, displays, photovoltaic cells, and optical amplifiers.

The global photonics market is forecast to reach a massive valuation of US$ 1.6 trillion by the end of 2033.

SOURCE: https://www.futuremarketinsights.com/reports/sample/rep-gb-16732


As the pioneer of Visible Light Communication (VLC) technology, Zero1 creates, designs and deploys personalised, modular and 100% integrated solutions with the development of Optical Camera Communication (OCC) agnostic of any LED light.

We spoke to CTO, Marc Fleschen, to get his view on the progress Zero1 is making in the development of the light communication ecosystem.

Who is Zero1 and what role do you play in the light communication ecosystem?

Founded in 2018 in Luxembourg, Zero1 is a provider of Optical Camera Communication (OCC) technology. The company owns more than 9 patents related to LiFi technology, and it also owns and produces all of the existing products, software, APIs and platforms. A key player for anyone who wants to adopt this technology, we are also the only member of the LCA dedicated to promoting OCC.

The team are extremely proud of the technology that has been developed – it can adapt to almost all currently existing LEDs, meaning that once installed, you can forget about it. It removes a layer of complication for the end user, allowing us to be service and customer-oriented as a business.

What do you think the future holds for light communication?

Currently, in order to connect to Zero1’s light communication technology, the user has to download an app – much in the way that QR codes operated when they were first introduced. I would love to see the ability to pick up the OCC signal in-built into mobile phones’ camera technology natively, with no need to download an additional app.

I see light communication becoming complementary to WiFi. Light communications will serve where WiFi can’t – for example, in the airport, you will use WiFi in the terminal but switch to LiFi for the flight. The goal for the future is for the technology to become mainstream by being integrated into devices, making it accessible to all who use a smart phone.

What successes have you enjoyed recently as a business in light communication?

A great example for Zero1 recently has been a partnership with a museum in Italy. We installed our technology throughout the lights in the museum so they are permanently broadcasting code. Essentially this means that all visitors to the museum can now use their phone as an audio guide – when they are standing next to an exhibit their phone will pick up the specific light signal from that area through the museum’s app and instantly provide further information on the exhibit to the user.

What are the key developments you would like to see in the light communication ecosystem?

More generally, I would like to see a stronger international presence across the sector. Specifically thinking about LCA, an increased membership base would be of great benefit.

How can those of us operating in light technology help to achieve both aspirations? Firstly, I would like to see us with a stronger presence at exhibitions that deal with telecoms, giving us more opportunities to express how LiFi can add value to the latest innovations and help build sustainable developments for future generations. Finally, I would also like to see more integration and partnerships with universities, helping the subject of LiFi become better known to students; making the younger generation aware that light communication exists and ultimately be more familiar with it.

Bank’s Backing Boosts Rising Tech Star

Wireless Communications experts pureLiFi will target a global roll out of their revolutionary technology after securing £10million backing from the Scottish National Investment Bank.

The Edinburgh based firm uses light to transmit data rather than conventional radio frequency systems such as WiFi and 5G.

By harnessing the light spectrum LiFi is able to provide more reliable wireless communications with unparalleled security.

The investment aligns with the Bank’s mission to invest in innovation and industries of the future, creating high value jobs in world class businesses.

pureLiFi CEO Alistair Banham said:

“The Bank’s investment will help us achieve our vision to connect everyone and everything with LiFi.

“We introduced our technology to the world from Scotland and it is important for us to grow our company and ecosystem from here.

“Our vision is for Scotland to be a recognised centre of excellence for LiFi. In the future customers from around the world will come to us for our innovative technology and leverage the wider photonics ecosystem that already exists here in Scotland.”

The Bank’s investment will enable pureLiFi to further develop new technologies while opening up additional markets in areas such as mobile phones, tablets, wearables and other connected devices.

LiFi is complementary to WiFi technology, offering transformationally improved performance. Additionally, when WiFi and LiFi work together the users across both technologies experience greatly improved connectivity, as LiFi also makes WiFi better.

The number of connected devices in the average home has more than doubled in the past two years. As more devices connect to struggling home WiFi networks, bandwidth is split, interference increases and response times slow for everyone.

LiFi solves the biggest challenges faced by current wireless communications technologies by decreasing congestion, improving security and quality of connection

Jimmy Williamson, Executive Director, at the Scottish National Investment Bank said:

“The Bank’s investment will support pureLiFi as they look to scale up their operation, allowing them to take the innovative technology to the global market.

“By backing them the Bank is also investing in highly skilled research and development jobs in Scotland and endorsing pureLiFi’s vision to create a centre of excellence of LiFi.

“We are excited to provide them with the growth capital that will help them reach the next stage in their development.”

The use of the light spectrum means that LiFi can provide more efficient connectivity with overall requirements compared to traditional methods.

About The Scottish  National Investment Bank:

The Scottish National Investment Bank is Scotland’s first development investment bank, wholly owned by the Scottish Ministers on behalf of the people of Scotland.

The Bank is an impact investor, focused on delivering both commercial returns and mission impacts with its investments.  The Bank is a PLC and operationally independent from government.

The Bank invests in businesses and projects connected to Scotland to deliver long term, patient debt or equity investment where the private market is failing to provide the support businesses and projects require to grow.

The Bank’s missions are:

  • Supporting Scotland’s transition to net zero
  • Building communities and promoting equality
  • Harnessing innovation to enable our people to flourish

The Scottish Government has committed to capitalising the Bank with £2bn in its first 10 years.  Over time as the Bank’s initial investments are repaid, the Bank will reinvest those funds in businesses and projects creating a perpetual investment fund to support the Scottish economy in the long term. The Bank was established in November 2020.


A European partnership for an international ambition

ZERO1, a pioneer in light communication (LC) and optical camera communication (OCC) technology is pleased to announce the signing of a strategic partnership with SITUM, a leading company in navigation and indoor location systems.

Combining LED light with a powerful geolocation system, extremely precise guidance, and the reception of information on smartphones are the promise of this unique partnership.

Together, SITUM and ZERO1 encourage the adoption of green technology with low power, energy, low interference, low maintenance while offering ultra-high reliability and an unprecedented user experience.

SITUM’s platform for indoor navigation and localization will be the first in the world to integrate the OCC of ZERO1 (defined as an international standard) this opening to all sectors the possibility of using what is already available, namely the LED infrastructure in buildings.

It is also a partnership between two European companies, which place innovation at the heart of building management services, shopping centers, airports, hospitals, stadiums, head offices, factories, or museums…

The combination of SITUM IPS and ZERO1 OCC technologies will further enhance businesses. It will allow many users to adopt new mobility habits while discovering new POIs without wasting time searching for them.

Signify and Intelligent Waves enter into strategic collaboration

Trulifi Intelligent Waves


LiFi offers additional layer of data security and reliable communications infrastructure for defense personnel in challenging, high-risk operational locations.

Signify (Euronext: LIGHT), the world leader in lighting, has entered into a strategic technology collaboration with Intelligent Waves, developer of the award-winning, cyber-defense solution, GRAYPATH. Together, Signify’s game-changing LiFi solution, Trulifi, and the GRAYPATH software use invisible light waves to enable reliable, secure, two-way wireless data communication, providing defense personnel with mission-critical connectivity.

Signify’s unique Trulifi solution offers physical security via dedicated USB access keys and a consistent, high-speed wireless connection through light, while GRAYPATH uses the cloud to randomize and distribute data across multiple paths and encrypted channels. The technology integration enables the secure transmission of data from high-risk operational locations without the danger of information being jammed, intercepted or disrupted.

“We are excited to offer our solution, in partnership with Intelligent Waves, to the defense industry,” said Richard Honey, Head of Trulifi by Signify sales, US Defense sector.

“Light-based communication, unlike conventional radio technologies such as Wi-Fi and 4G/5G, offers a critical, extra layer of security; it can be controlled within a restricted space and does not penetrate through walls. This benefit has already been recognized by defense customers, with the US Army, Navy and Marines adopting our game-changing LiFi technology.”

John Hammes, Chief Strategy Officer of Intelligent Waves, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Signify, a pioneer in lighting and light-based communication. Together, we will be able to better serve the most demanding and secure special operators in austere environments, and we look forward to integrating Signify’s innovation into the platform.”

According to Joe Vano, Transmission Group Lead, Program Management Office – Tactical Network, Technical Management Division of the US Army, “LiFi can enhance the Low Probability of Intercept/Low Probability of Detection attribute on the battlefield. This secures the Tactical Operations Center (TOC) to a higher degree due to its insignificant and largely undetectable RF signature while maintaining high-speed connectivity within the TOC. Reducing our adversaries’ ability to intercept and jam the battlefield Commander’s network while still maintaining a network cable-free environment within the TOC is advantageous.”

More information about Trulifi by Signify and its benefits for the defense industry can be found here.


Signify are a world leader in lighting. They are unlocking the extraordinary potential of light, providing professional customers and consumers with connected lighting offerings that bring both light and the data connectivity.

We spoke to Musa Unmehopa, Head of Ecosystems and Strategic Alliances at Signify, and got his views on the progress Signify and the development of the light communication ecosystem.

Who are Signify and what role do you play in the light communication ecosystem?

Signify is the world leader in lighting for professionals and consumers and lighting for the Internet of Things. Our Philips products, Interact connected lighting systems and data-enabled services, deliver business value and transform life in homes, buildings and public spaces. Trulifi by Signify is the perfect solution for light communications. It’s a range of LiFi systems, providing two-way wireless communications that provides consistent high-speed connectivity, unique physical security and has low latency for real time data streaming. Trulifi underlines our strategy to unlock the potential of light to address new high-growth markets. Through our global presence, large installed base and industry knowledge, we’re helping existing and new customers to leverage their existing and future lighting infrastructures to receive reliable, secure, high-speed wireless communication.

What do you think the future holds for light communication?

Our focus is on the present, the future starts now. LiFi has progressed and ripened in research and academia for years. And while we will continue to see exciting technological advancements in our labs, in terms of transmission speed, use of novel materials, etc., the base LiFi technology is ready for mainstream deployment. Commercial deployments are being rolled out today to address real-life use cases in key market segments. We believe initial LiFi deployments will focus on those use cases where RF-based wireless communications poses a challenge, either due to physical or legislative constraints. And subsequently, as the RF spectrum becomes increasingly scarce and congested, LiFi will evolve into a mature complementary technology next to Wi-Fi and 5G/6G.

What successes have you enjoyed recently as a business in light communication?

We see great and increasing momentum. As part of some of our recent wins, we have installed Trulifi 6016 for outdoor use in the Dutch air force to enable wireless connectivity where radio is not an option. World forum in The Hague uses Trulifi 6002 office solution to provide their customers with secure and reliable connectivity without running the risk of eaves dropping in highly sensitive situations. Orange Luxembourg use Trulifi in their major store to demonstrate the potential of LiFi in the consumer market. Also, already four schools in Belgium (three in Wallonia and one in Brussels) have installed Trulifi by Signify, following successful installations in schools in Italy, Germany, the US and the Netherlands.

What are the key developments you would like to see in the light communication ecosystem?

To enable the LiFi market to grow to its full potential, it is essential that the standards-based, multi-vendor ecosystem continues to expand. A key development will be miniaturization as a key step towards integration into consumer end devices. For this, we need a stable standard with available silicon, and an interoperability certification program. The ITU-T G.9991 (G.vlc) standard in conjunction with the tried and tested certification program of the HomeGrid Forum, as well as chipsets that have been commercially available now for several years, provide the necessary conditions for the LiFi ecosystem to thrive. Trulifi by Signify has embraced this standard throughout its portfolio.


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