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PIN (positive intrinsic negative) photodiodes and analog-to-digital converters (ADC) are commonly used on visible light communication (VLC) receivers in order to retrieve the data on detected signals. In this paper, a visible light communication receiver based on a light to frequency converter (LTF) is proposed. We characterized the LTF and derived an equation for signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) estimation in terms of its input optical power, and the frequency of the output periodic signal. The experiments show that the periodic signal of the LTF converter has a maximum output frequency of 600 kHz at a distance of 6.2 cm. In this setup, measured SNR reached 18.75 dB, while the lowest obtained SNR with 1.1 m length was roughly −35.1 dB. The results obtained suggest that a bit rate of 150 kbps can be achieved with an on-off keying (OOK) modulation format. We analyzed the results and discuss the advantages and limitations of the LTF converter for optical wireless communication purposes.
visible light communication; light to frequency converter; white-light led; optical wireless communication