NRI scientist AJ Paulraj wins Tech ‘Nobel’- 2014 Marconi Prize

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The Indian-born scientist and Professor (Emeritus) at StanfordUniversity, Mr. Arogyaswami Joseph Paulraj (69), won the prestigious Marconi Society Prize 2014 for developing the theory and applications of Multiple Input Multiple Output (MIMO) antennas.

His idea for using multiple antennas at both the transmitting and receiving stations, which is at the heart of the current high speed Wi-Fi and 4G mobile systems, has revolutionized high speed wireless delivery of multimedia services for billions of people. MIMO boosts data rate by creating multiple parallel spatial data streams and is the key to the latest wireless broadband networks like 4G cellular.

  • Every wifi router and 4G phone uses MIMO technology that was pioneered by Mr. Paulraj.
  • Mr. Paulraj is the only India-born scientist to receive both the Marconi Prize and the IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal– the two top global IT technology awards. 
About Marconi Society Prize
  • Also known as “Tech Nobel”
  • Founded: 1974 by Guglielmo Marconi’s daughter Gioia Marconi Braga to mark the centennial of her father’s birth and memorialize his spirit of ingenuity in service to humanity. (He was the radio inventor).
  • Headquarters:San FranciscoBayArea, United States.
  • Prize: $100,000 honorarium and a sculpture and its honorees become Marconi Fellows.
  • Annual award
  • Rrecognizes advancements in communications awarded by the Marconi Foundation.
  • Winners typically include scientists whose mathematical theories and inventions have shaped the Internet and broadband access, public key encryption, Web search, wired and wireless transmission, multimedia publishing, optical fiber and satellite communications.
  • Previous winners: Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Bin, world wide web (www) designer Tim Berners-Lee, father of internet Vint Cerf, cell phone inventor Martin Cooper and fibre-optic communications developer Charles Kao, etc.
  • The society is celebrating its 50th year in 2014. 

Note: An electrical engineer, Paul worked for the Indian Navy which then sent him to IIT Delhi for an M.S program. He is known for pioneering the development of military sonars (APSOH family). He also served as the founding director for three major labs in India – CAIR (Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics ), CDAC (Center for Development of Advanced Computing) and CRL (Central Research Labs of Bharat Electronics).

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