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LiFi technology piloted at Scotland’s South Ayrshire school

Scottish secondary school pupils at Kyle Academy secondary school in Ayr, Scotland, have benefited from next-generation high-speed wireless internet connectivity following the deployment by pureLiFi of its LiFi solutions, using light to establish wireless internet connections.

The project is being conducted in conjunction with The University of Edinburgh and is overseen by Scottish Futures Trust, which supports the Scottish Government’s Digital Strategy. The project was also supported by the Scottish government, with a £16,000 grant through the Digital Schools initiative for equipment and installation. pureLiFi and the LiFi Research and Development Centre at the University of Edinburgh provided resources, support and subsequent testing.

The installation at Kyle Academy comprised of eight LiFi-enabled LED light bulbs in the ceiling, and students have been given access to LiFi-XC Stations that plug into their laptops, enabling high-speed connectivity through the lights. LiFi is increasingly becoming a commercial reality (see Wireless data from every light). Installing it alongside Wi-Fi in this way provides additional bandwidth to reduce network congestion – enabling students to stream educational videos and download resources with seamless connectivity.

MSP Minister for Energy, Connectivity and the Islands, Paul Wheelhouse, who visited the school to see the technology in action, commented: ‘We are pleased to support a Scottish-born company whose complementary, emerging technology has the potential to transform delivery of wireless broadband communications. The pilot trial in Kyle Academy represents a potentially very valuable contribution to our knowledge and understanding of evolving 5G technologies.’

Councillor William Grant, South Ayrshire Council’s Portfolio Holder for Lifelong Learning, added: ‘It’s been really exciting for Kyle Academy to be part of this pilot project to enhance wireless technology and feedback from young people, who have definitely seen an improvement in connectivity, has been positive. It’s easy to see the potential the technology has, and the difference it could make in the future – not just in schools, but in business and in society – and I look forward to seeing how it moves forward.’

Said Professor Harald Haas, of University of Edinburgh and co-founder of pureLiFi: ‘LiFi was born in Scotland at a TED Global talk that I presented in 2011. Seven years later, I am absolutely thrilled to see true LiFi deployed for the first time in a school in This world’s first pilot not only offers secure connectivity in a School, but hopefully inspires the next generation to join us in innovating for humanity and prosperity.’

Alistair Banham CEO of pureLiFi concluded: ‘At Kyle Academy, LiFi has enhanced the classroom into a fully connected environment allowing students to have a world of educational tools at their fingertips through light. The students at Kyle Academy are taking part in the early adoption of technology that will someday be in every light and every device connecting everyone and everything. This is just the beginning for LiFi, on our journey toward unprecedented data and bandwidth.’

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