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Professor Parth Pathak’s research investigates the design of next generation of wireless networks that can provide very high data rate wireless links and enable smart indoor spaces.

With consistent evolution of applications ranging from ultra high definition videos, mirror casting among personal devices, and virtual and augmented reality, the demand of high capacity wireless links is more than ever before. In our research, we are developing novel wireless networks through the use of millimeter wave signals at 60 GHz frequency that have the potential to deliver multi-gigabit per second data rates for wireless links.

Two major challenges in design of millimeter wave networks are highly directional nature of wireless links and its inability to penetrate through walls and human body. These challenges make it extremely difficult to support mobility of devices like smartphones and wearables. In our ongoing research, we are creating novel solutions that can leverage reflections from various indoor objects to eliminate the blockage and support seamless device mobility. With such solutions, it will be possible to support extremely high data rate applications (such as 4K video streaming) over wireless links.  

Additionally, we are using the millimeter wave wireless links for enabling contact-free human sensing applications. Due to reduced multi-path artifacts, the reflection of millimeter wave from human body provides unprecedented view of even the smallest motions of the body. As shown in the illustration above, the reflections can be analyzed to measure user’s vital signs (heart beats and breathing rate), fitness tracking (counting steps, calories) and remote interaction applications (gesture recognition). Such millimeter wave sensing applications do not require user to carry/wear any devices and reuse the existing networking infrastructure for sensing without any additional deployment cost.