A novel retrocommunication link utilizing reflective multiple quantum well (MQW) optical modulators and nonmechanical beam steering and tracking is demonstrated. Large aperture reflective MQW modulators using AlGaAs/GaAs are optimized and manufactured. The modulators exhibit a contrast ratio larger than 4:1 and a modulation bandwidth of 10 MHz. Nonmechanical beam steering and tracking are studied using nematic liquid crystal (NLC) spatial light modulators (SLMs). The communication link is comprised of a retromodulating array with four MQW modulators and a transceiver using a NLC SLM for beam steering and tracking. Transfer of audio, real-time image data and pseudorandom bit sequences over 100-m range while tracking the moving retromodulator is shown. The link is capable of transferring data at approximately 8 Mbps. © 2005 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.