NSU Scientists Create Prototype LCD Device for 6G Mobile Communication Systems

A prototype of an LCD device, a spatial phase modulator for controlling beams of sub-terahertz radiation with the prospect of use in new generation wireless communication systems (6G), was created in the Laboratory of Functional Diagnostics of Low-Dimensional Structures for Nanoelectronics at the NSU Physics Department’s Analytical and Technological Research Center "High Technologies and Nanostructured Materials". 6G technology is based on the use of terahertz (THz) waves. The transition to these waves will increase the data transmission speed in wireless communication systems at least 100 times compared to existing solutions.

Terahertz (THz) waves are electromagnetic radiation with frequencies fr om one hundred gigahertz to several terahertz. THz waves are located between the infrared and ultrahigh frequency (microwave) ranges of the spectrum.

Sergei Kuznetsov, Laboratory Senior Researcher, provided more details,

To date, the exact requirements for 6G technology have not yet been determined. Its standards are only expected to be developed by 2030. This is the date designated as the time lim it for the introduction of the first 6G systems into global practice. The transition to such high frequencies for wireless communication requires the development of conceptually new approaches, both in terms of the architecture of 6G systems and the physical principles of their operation and technological implementation. In particular, since the THz range corresponds to wavelengths on a millimeter/submillimeter scale, information transmission in 6G systems will be carried out along a narrow beam, the direction of which should be dynamically (electronically) adjusted as the subscriber moves in space.

The NSU scientists’ developments are aimed at creating devices for controlling terahertz beams. They are based on the use of liquid crystals integrated with special metamaterials (resonant metastructures). Externally, the prototype devices look like LCD displays. Their advantage is they combine the necessary functionality and low production costs. Work to improve the prototypes continues.