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Visible Light Communications for Smart Manufacturing Environments (Advert Reference: RDF19/EE/MPEE/GHASSEMLOOY)

Project Description

The modern manufacturing is reaching a new level of flexibility, which allows fabrication of personalized products. In manufacturing environments all the robots, machines and tools used are required reconfiguration on regular basis to allow flexibility and efficient use of resources, thus leading to increased productivity. This is achieved by free up the robots and machines by the way of avoiding the use of communication cables and replacing them with wireless communication technologies. In such environments, currently the main wireless technologies used are Z-Wave, Bluetooth Smart, ZigBee, WiFi, and low-power wide-area network, which are all based on using the highly congested and costly radio frequency spectrum. However, there is the attractive alternative technology of optical wireless communications and in particular visible light communications (VLC) (or LiFi), which is license free offering high data rates, high energy efficiency, high security (highly desirable in modern manufacturing) and robustness against interference. The VLC technology uses the light emitting diodes based lighting fixture in order to provide multiple functionalities including illuminations, data communications, indoor positioning (i.e., GPS) and sensing. This research will investigate distributed multiple input multiple output (MIMO) VLC system for indoor positioning and data communications by developing a comprehensive mathematical model and considering the best trade-off between complexity and performance. The project will also involve comprehensive channel modelling considering both dynamic and semi-static conditions as well as the transmitter and receiver characteristics; visible light communications front end design; efficient signalling schemes for distributed MIMO and development of a dedicated testbeds for experimental verification of the proposed solutions in a manufacturing environment. The successful candidate will join OCRG one of the leading research groups in the world with extensive expertise and research activities in the field of Optical Wireless Communications. The applicant should have a good first degree or MSc in communications engineering, optical communications, electrical/electronics engineering, physics, and digital signal processing.

The principal supervisor of this project is Fary Ghassemlooy.

Eligibility and How to Apply:

Please note eligibility requirement:

• Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]); or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
• Appropriate IELTS score, if required.
• Applicants cannot apply for this funding if currently engaged in Doctoral study at Northumbria or elsewhere.

For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see

Please note: Applications that do not include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words (not a copy of the advert), or that do not include the advert reference (e.g. RDF19/EE/MPEE/GHASSEMLOOY) will not be considered.

Deadline for applications: Friday 25 January 2019
Start Date: 1 October 2019

Northumbria University is an equal opportunities provider and in welcoming applications for studentships from all sectors of the community we strongly encourage applications from women and under-represented groups.

Funding Notes

The studentship is available to Students Worldwide, and covers full fees and a full stipend, paid for three years at RCUK rates (for 2018/19, this is £14,777 pa).


1. Ghassemlooy, Z., Alves, L. N., Zvanovec, S., and Khalighi, M-A.: Visible Light Communications: Theory and Applications, CRC June 2017, ISBN 9781498767538 - CAT# K29196

2. Z. Feng, C. Guo, Z. Ghassemlooy and Y. Yang, "The Spatial Dimming Scheme for the MU-MIMO-OFDM VLC System," in IEEE Photonics Journal, vol. 10, no. 5, pp. 1-13, Oct. 2018, Art no. 7907013.

3. P. A. Haigh, P. Chvojka, S. Zvánovec, Z. Ghassemlooy and I. Darwazeh, "Analysis of Nyquist Pulse Shapes for Carrierless Amplitude and Phase Modulation in Visible Light Communications," in Journal of Lightwave Technology, vol. 36, no. 20, pp. 5023-5029, 15 Oct.15, 2018.

4. Xu, W., Zhang, M., Han, D., Ghassemlooy, Z., Luo, P., and Zhang, Y.: “Real-Time 262-Mb/s Visible Light Communication With Digital Predistortion Waveform Shaping,” IEEE Photonics Journal, 10 (3), pp. 1-10, June 2018.

5. Werfli, K., Chvojka, P., Ghassemlooy, Z., Hassan, N. B., Zvanovec, S., Burton, A., Haigh, P. A., and Bhatnagar, M. R.: “Experimental Demonstration of High-Speed 4× 4 Imaging Multi-CAP MIMO Visible Light Communications,” IEEE, JLT, 36 (10), pp. 1944-1951, June 2018.

6. Hassan, N. B., Ghassemlooy, Z., Zvanovec, S., Luo, P, and Le-Minh, H.: “Non-line-of-sight 2× N indoor optical camera communications,” Applied Optics, 57 (7), pp. B144-B149, March 2018.

7. Luo, P., Zhang, M., Ghassemlooy, Z., Zvanovec, S., Feng, S., and Zhang, P.: "Undersampled-based modulation schemes for optical camera communications," in IEEE Communications Magazine, vol. 56, no. 2, pp. 204-212, Feb. 2018.

8. Abadi, N. M., Ghassemlooy, Z., Zvanovec, S., Bhatnagar, M. R., Khalighi, M. A., and Wu, Y.: "Impact of link parameters and channel correlation on the performance of FSO systems with the differential signaling technique," in IEEE/OSA Journal of Optical Communications and Networking, 9 (11), pp. 1062-1063, Nov. 2017.

9. Pergoloni, S., Mohamadi, Z., Vegni, A. M., Ghassemlooy, Z., and Biagi, M.: "Metameric indoor localization schemes using visible lights," in Journal of Lightwave Technology , 35 (14), pp. 2933-2942, 2017

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