Think Small: Tiny Radios To Bring Big Internet Changes



One of the biggest problems with the internet (and our growing reliance on it) is congestion. As of now, all wireless communication relies on the same radio waves, and traffic is becoming a considerable concern. With the ever-increasing need for more bandwidth and data, experts have been searching for a solution to this wireless problem. And as it turns out, the solution may be closer — and smaller — than we ever imagined.

Scientists now believe that the terahertz band could be the ‘express lane’ for all our wireless needs. Located close to radio waves on the electromagnetic spectrum, the terahertz band has the potential to add truly impressive speed and reliability to our wireless device networks. So why haven’t we been taking advantage of this technology already? Until recently, there was no reliable way to access the terahertz band and utilize its resources.

The answer to this problem proved to be a tiny but powerful tool. Scientists created extremely small radios made of graphene and semiconducting material that would allow them to reach the terahertz band. These petite devices may lack in size, but they more than make up for it in speed and effectiveness. Early reports indicate that download times were cut from hours to just a few seconds, and high-definition streaming went off without a hitch.

Even more significant, it is believed that the terahertz band could make implanted nano-technology a viable option for those living with health problems. The speed and power of the technology means that sensors and devices could be used to alert sick people of impending medical concerns, and get them the help they need in record time. In short, this tiny invention could have a huge impact on countless lives.

The system still has some kinks to work out; the terahertz band loses power over long distances, and needs a boost to hold up its signal. Experts are working on a system that would allow millions of the tiny radios to be installed in buildings and devices across country, providing a powerful network with high-speed capabilities. Obviously this is a massive undertaking, but the payoff would be well worth the effort.

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