IrLAN or Infrared Local Area Network
Infrared technology is compatible to enable the computers to exchange information through short distances using wireless receivers and transmitters.
This is achieved through a system of adaptors which can receive and transmit signals.
Such adaptors having been installed in many mobile devices like laptops or handheld instruments. For desktops also there are a number of adaptors installed or available as separate units.
Infrared Local Area Networks, can be operated only through such adaptors and that too within a distance of some 5 meters. Infrared PANs (Personal Area Networks) can be a part of WiFi networks, the variety of data tranmission devices allow a wide range of connectivity options.
In a way these operate in the same manner as ethernet LANs, save for the fact that they do not have wires on the surface and are hence considered wireless local networks. IrLAN helps in conducting business in small areas, and the rate of transmission of data is through low powered signals.
Using infrared for transmission, the IrLAN works in three types known as directed, diffused and directed point to point data transmission. To increase the speed of transmission the directed method is employed, where the infrared light gets focused before transmitting data; whereas in the diffused IrLAN variation, the infrared light which comes through transmission spreads throughout the room, enabling the receiving unit to function if it is situated within the area covered by transmission.
The directed point to point system has the rate highest rate of data exchange, provided that the receiving device is aligned to the sending device to enable data transmission.
In 1992, regulations for IrLAN were formulated. The minimum bandwidth rate for data transmission, through, say, file transfer per loading program is regulated as 1Mbps. When working on real-time applications, such as voice transmission it may be necessary to have time bound services.