Senior Member Dave Phillips received the 2015 Federal Laboratory Consortium Award for Excellence in Technology Transfer. The FLC is a network of U.S. labs that helps businesses develop new commercial products by applying the research conducted by federal institutions.
Phillips was recognized for developing the solid-state integrated circuit breaker, which has improved the reliability of shore-to-submarine communications.
He is an engineer at the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, in San Diego.
Fellow Kenneth O received the Semiconductor Industry Association’s 2014 University Research Award for “lifetime contributions to semiconductor design and research.”
He has been working with analog electronics for almost 30 years. His current research focuses on the fabrication of devices, circuits, and systems for sub-millimeter wave and terahertz applications.
O is a professor of electrical engineering at the University of Texas, Dallas, and director of the university’s Texas Analog Center of Excellence.
Fellow Blake S. Wilson received the 2015 Russ Prize from the National Academy of Engineering for his role in developing cochlear implants. Established by the late engineer Fritz J. Russ and his wife Dolores, the US $500,000 award recognizes a bioengineering achievement that “significantly improves the human condition.”
Cochlear implants are surgically implanted electronic devices that provide the sense of sound to people who are deaf or severely hard of hearing. A microphone picks up external sounds and sends them to the implant, which then directly stimulates the auditory nerve. In turn, the nerve sends signals to the brain, where they are interpreted as sound.
In the 1980s, Wilson developed a continuous interleaved sampling method for a cochlear implant in which electrodes driven by adjacent filters stimulate the auditory nerve at slightly different times. This approach eliminates interference and produces a much clearer sound. Wilson’s work provides the basis for sound-processing methods used in today’s cochlear implants.
Wilson is an adjunct professor in Duke University’s departments of surgery, biomedical engineering, and electrical and computer engineering, in Durham, N.C. He is also founder and co-director of the Duke Hearing Center and a member of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society.