Broadcom helps optimise Wi-Fi links for live music performance

Here’s an interesting one. Bristol is highlighting the research around protecting the use of wi-fi in live performances from interference.

Imogen Heap wearing the Wi-Fi musical gloves

Imogen Heap wearing the Wi-Fi musical gloves

The artist Imogen Heap uses a pair of Wi-Fi gloves in her act, and efforts were made to improve their performance and resilience. The Wi-Fi link must be able to cope with interference from an audience that may include hundreds of Wi-Fi enabled mobile phones, highlights the university.

With support from support from Broadcom, the Bristol research team modified a Wi-Fi access point to allow the use of high-gain directional antennas, showing how the link can be improved by modifying a number of Medium Access Control (MAC) parameters.

“We have a world-leading Wi-Fi research group at Bristol and this project really caught our imagination,” Andrew Nix, Professor of Wireless Communication Systems and Head of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

“With help from Broadcom, Simon [Simon Rankine, a MEng Electronics and Communications Engineering undergraduate student] was able to modify a standard access point to ruggedise the link to and from Imogen’s Wi-Fi gloves. It’s fantastic to see one of our undergraduate students contributing so strongly to our research output.”

The research was a joint collaboration between the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol).

Paper: Making the Most of Wi-Fi: Optimisations for Robust Wireless Live Music Performance, by Thomas Mitchell, Sebastian Madgwick, Simon Ramkine, Geoffrey Hilton, Adrian Free, Andrew Nix

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