Duke of Cambridge Presents Maxwell Medals to GSM Developers

The co-recipients helped advance international mobile communications that led to today’s emerging 5G standards

20 August 2018

Britain’s Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, presented Philippe Dupuis and Thomas Haug with the IEEE/RSE James Clerk Maxwell Medal on 5 July in Edinburgh. The award is sponsored by the IEEE Foundation.

While working for the European Telecommunications Standards Institute, Dupuis and Haug developed the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM), which established a policy for advancements in international mobile communications. GSM, a foundation for 3G and 4G systems, affects today’s emerging 5G standards.

Dupuis led the Franco-German cooperation program that demonstrated digital technologies were mature enough to build the GSM system. He is credited with moving the system from concept to reality.

The two men received the award for “leadership in the development of the first international mobile communications standard with subsequent evolution into worldwide smartphone data communication.”

IEEE and the Royal Society of Edinburgh created the Maxwell award in 2006 to recognize groundbreaking contributions that impact the development of electronics and electrical engineering or related fields. James Clerk Maxwell, a 19th-century Scottish mathematician and physicist, laid the foundations of electromagnetic wave theory, radio propagation, microwave techniques, and radio communications.

The Maxwell medal was one of the awards that were scheduled to be delivered during the annual IEEE Honors Ceremony, held on 11 May in San Francisco, but Dupuis and Haug were unable to attend.

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