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Wednesday, January 22, 2014 2:00PM IST (8:30AM GMT)
India Born Wireless Pioneer Professor Arogyaswami Paulraj Honored for the Invention of a Breakthrough Wireless Technology
Bangalore, Karnataka, India

Joins a very select group of top information technology (IT) pioneers such as Tim Berners-Lee (World Wide Web), Vint Cerf (Internet), Larry Page (Google Search), Marty Hellman (Public Key Cryptography) and Martin Cooper (Cell Phone).

Coimbatore (Tamil Nadu)-born scientist and Stanford University Emeritus Professor Arogyaswami Joseph Paulraj, has been awarded the prestigious 2014 Marconi Society Prize. The award, which comes with a $100,000 (Rs 62 lakhs) prize, is the top global accolade for pioneers information technology. 

Paulraj’s recognition is for his invention and advancement of MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) technology, a key enabler of wireless broadband services that benefit billions of people worldwide. MIMO is at the heart of the current WiFi and 4G mobile systems.

“Paulraj’s contributions to wireless technology, and the resulting benefit to mankind, are indisputable. Every WiFi router and 4G phone today uses MIMO technology pioneered by him,” says Professor Sir David Payne, Chairman of the Marconi Society.

The Marconi Prize comes just three years after Paulraj was honored with the other major Telecom technology award – the IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal for his work on theoretical foundations of MIMO.  

Paulraj is the only India-born scientist to receive both the Marconi Prize and the Bell Medal - the two top global IT technology awards.  After Sir J.C. Bose’s demonstration of the millimeter wave radio in 1895, Paulraj’s invention of MIMO in 1992 is the next major innovation in IT from an Indian born scientist.

Prior to moving to the Stanford, Paulraj served for 25 years in the Indian Navy where he led a team to deliver a world class sonar (APSOH) in 1983, a stunning achievement for Indian R&D.  Former Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral R. H. Tahiliani said today, “The Navy is enormously proud of Paulraj's achievements and will remain always indebted for his landmark development of the APSOH sonar.”

Paulraj was the founding director of three major labs -- Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR), Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC), Bangalore  and the Central Research Labs (CRL) of Bharat Electronics. After moving to Stanford University he built the world’s leading research group in MIMO, and founded two landmark companies in the US Silicon Valley to develop MIMO wireless systems. Paulraj’s many awards include the Padma Bhushan (2010) and the IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal (2011).

“Paulraj’s brilliance and perseverance have revolutionized wireless technology bringing a lasting benefit to mankind.  He is a wonderful role model for researchers all over the world.” says Mr. Narayana Murthy, Executive Chairman Infosys and a noted pioneer of IT services.

Paulraj has been a strong proponent for reviving India’s telecom technology industry noting the high cost to the nation for its near total dependence on telecom imports.

Link to Marconi Society page: www.marconisociety.org  

Link to Paulraj’s Stanford University page: http://www.stanford.edu/~apaulraj/

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Dr Arogyaswami Paulraj, Winner of the 2014 Marconi Prize