As the demand for mobile wireless services continues to grow, and the deployment of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies expands, Visible Light Communication (VLC) is emerging as a potential broadband transmission technology that will offer virtually unlimited spectrum for high quality wireless services. The LESA Center recently achieved the world’s first high-speed visible light transmission link with a fully integrated microchip receiver.
For the eighth summer in a row, the Center for Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications (LESA) sponsored undergraduates and teachers for an in-depth summer research experience. 25 undergraduates and 9 educators from as far west as New Mexico and as far south as Puerto Rico participated in an eight week Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU), Undergraduate Research Program (URP), and a Research Experience for Teachers (RET) where they learned about advanced solid-state lighting technologies and developing new LED-based applications. (more…)
LESA’s Summer Undergraduates and Teachers Shine as Researchers Developing Advanced Lighting Applications
For the eighth summer in a row, the Center for Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications (LESA) sponsored undergraduates and teachers for an in-depth summer research experience. 25 undergraduates and 9 educators from as far west as New Mexico and as far south as Puerto Rico participated in an eight week Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU), Undergraduate Research Program (URP), and a Research Experience for Teachers (RET) where they learned about advanced solid-state lighting technologies and developing new LED-based applications.
LESA’s REU, URP and RET programs allow visiting students and teachers to work directly with LESA graduate students, staff and faculty on state-of-the-art projects with exciting lighting applications that incorporate advanced materials, devices and system integration concepts. REU and URP students gain valuable insights on new technologies and approaches to performing advanced research. RET participants develop new lighting and applications-based curriculum used in the pre-college courses they teach, expanding the overall impact of LESA’s STEM K-12 outreach program.
This year’s summer program theme was “Synthesizing Light for the Benefit of Humanity.” Teachers and students learned about innovative lighting, control systems, power, and sensor technologies and how they can be integrated into real world, sustainable, and well-engineered Smart Systems.
Under the guidance of LESA graduate students, faculty and staff, participants develop research plans, attend lectures and seminars from subject matter experts, and visit local high-tech companies to see science and engineering at work.
Projects that explore how lighting systems can address today’s social, environmental and sustainability challenges covered a wide range of topics, such as: developing advanced sensors for visible light communications, researching improved occupancy sensing using digitized lighting, exploring novel biofluorescence sensing for both optimized plant growth systems and bacterial contamination detection, and new approaches to optical materials for higher efficiency color tunable lighting systems.
“We had a great turnout of some very bright and remarkable undergraduates, who will change the future of the world and lighting as we know it,” commented Elizabeth Herkenham, director of K-12 Education Outreach at Rensselaer. Samantha Atchinson, an undergraduate from the College of St. Rose, in Albany, NY, writes, “I have greatly benefitted from the LESA program at RPI…I learned valuable life skills that will be extremely applicable to graduate school, my future career and the world around me.”
“We have two key goals in this program: Recruit underserved minority undergraduates to become graduate students by engaging them in exciting research in advanced solid state lighting system applications, and expand our research by partnering with a very bright set of enthusiastic students and teachers looking to enrich their technical capabilities,” said Robert F. Karlicek, Jr., Ph.D., director of LESA, and professor in Electrical, Computer and Systems Engineering department at Rensselaer.
About the Center for Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications (LESA)
Funded primarily by the National Science Foundation, LESA is an interdisciplinary, multi-university center developing “Smart Lighting Systems that See and ThinkTM”. The Center engages faculty members, graduate students, research staff, and undergraduates to develop advanced smart lighting systems with adaptive and controllable properties that will not only illuminate, but generate lighting enabled system applications in healthcare, communications, building management and horticulture. The Center combines academia, industry, and government in partnership to produce transformational-engineered systems, along with engineering graduates who are adept at innovation and primed for leadership in the global economy. The LESA Center is headquartered at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY, and partners with Boston University, The University of New Mexico and Thomas Jefferson University to achieve its objectives. http://lesa.rpi.edu
Indrani Bhattacharya , a LESA RPI graduate student in ECSE was among the top 5 posters selected by the C3E Poster Symposium Competition to provide a presentation and to receive an honorarium. The C3E (Clean Energy, Education & Empowerment Awards) solicited posters showcasing the work of women in clean energy. This Poster Competition is an opportunity for early- and pre-career researchers to participate in networking and share their research at the C3E Women in Clean Energy Symposium, a collaboration of the U.S. Department of Energy, MIT Energy Initiative, and the Precourt Institute. Bhattacharya submitted her abstract and poster, “Lighting Systems that Think” in addition to a required one minute video pitching her work.
Thursday, June 22, 2016, 2:30 pm EST
Ubiquitous Sensing Using Visible Light
Xia Zhou, PhD
Department of Computer Science
The ability to sense what we do and how we behave is crucial to help detect diseases, diagnose early symptoms of health issues, and foster healthier lifestyles. Existing sensing technologies, however, have significant drawbacks. They either are intrusive — we have to constantly carry or wear sensing devices (e.g., Apple Watch, Fitbit), or present serious privacy risks by capturing raw images, or are limited in sensing granularity.
In this talk, I will present a radically different approach to unobtrusive human sensing, which exploits the ubiquitous light around us as a sensing medium that senses and responds to what we do, without requiring any on-body devices nor any cameras. I will first present LiSense, the first-of-its-kind system that reconstructs a 3D human skeleton in real time (60 Hz) using purely the light around us. Empowered by Visible Light Communication (VLC), LiSense uses shadows created by a human body from blocked light to reconstruct the 3D skeleton. I will then present our recent effort StarLight, which advances LiSense by addressing several practical issues and pushes light sensing closer to practice. I will conclude with our ongoing work and future directions.
Dr. Zhou Biography
Xia Zhou is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Dartmouth College. She received her PhD at UC Santa Barbara in 2013. Her research interests are in mobile systems and wireless networking. Her recent work on visible light communication systems has won the Best Paper Award at ACM VLCS 2014, Best Demo Award at MobiSys 2015, and Best Video Award at MobiCom 2015. Her work on spectrum distributions won Best Practical Paper Award at SIGMETRICS 2013, and Best Paper Award Finalist at MobiCom 2008. She also won other paper awards in UbiComp 2014 and 2015, HotWireless 2015. She is the recipient of the NSF CAREER Award in 2016 and Google Faculty Research Award in 2014.
For series details contact: Dr. Silvia Mioc, Director of Industrial Collaborations, firstname.lastname@example.org, 518-276-4010.
LESA: A Vision Way Beyond Seeing, an article which appeared in the May 17, 2016 online edition of West Coast Lighting Insider, highlights the work of the ERC. In the future, personalized lighting will interact with our presence, our environment and our activities. Lighting will change color, brightness and directionality, all the while transmitting data to our cellphones and wearable tech, networked with the Internet of Things (IoT). Implementing this vision is the purpose of the Smart Lighting Engineering Research Center, newly rebranded as the Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications Engineering Research Center (LESA ERC).
LESA RPI faculty, Prof Partha Dutta in collaboration with Ram Krishna Dharmath Foundation University (RKDF), in Bhopal India, have developed a device that can surpass 1400 Celsius from insolation to produce electricity. This project was sponsored from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India. Varsity vice chancellor VK Sethi and Professor Dutta developed the device. The objective of this project was to achieve the greatest amount of energy from the sun to be used for the production of electricity, without the polluting effects of coal – the primary source of electricity right now.
Brian Frey, LESA graduate student of Prof Lin in Physics has been awarded the Dr. Paul S. Ho ’65 Graduate Prize in Physics. This prize, established by the generosity of Dr. Paul S. Ho ’65, recognizes the need for technically educated people who will serve the betterment of mankind through the “application of science to the common purposes of life”. The fund shall be used to financially support a prize for an outstanding graduate student enrolled in the Department of Physics.
Frey is studying orders-of-magnitude absorption enhancement in simple cubic metal-oxide photonic crystals for mesoscale light-trapping applications. He expects to graduate in the Fall 2016.
Two RPI LESA faculty members, Profs. Kenneth Connor and Agung Julius, are recipients of the 2016 RPI School of Engineering Faculty Award. The School of Engineering honors those faculty who continue to enlist a variety of activities in both research and education to engage and encourage curiosity and learning among their students. (more…)