Wireless transmission at data rates of around 45 gigabits per second could one day be commonplace, some engineers say. “Fiber-in-air” is how the latest variant of 5G infrastructure is being described. To get there, a Britain-funded consortium of chip makers, universities, and others intend to aggressively investigate the exploitation of D-Band. That part of the radio spectrum is at 151-174.8 GHz in millimeter wavelengths (mm-wave) and hasn’t been used before.
The researchers intend to do it by riffing on a now roughly 70-year-old gun-like electron-sending device that can trace its roots back through the annals of radio history: The Traveling Wave Tube, or TWT, an electron gun-magnet-combo that was used in the development of television and still brings space images back to Earth.