Arun Netravali, a Rice University alumnus in electrical engineering and former president of Bell Labs, is the winner of the 2017 Marconi Prize for his work developing the digital video technology widely used in mobile phones and televisions.
At Rice, Netravali earned an M.S. and a Ph.D. in 1969 and 1971, respectively, both in electrical engineering, and joined Bell Labs in 1972. As president from 1999 to 2001, he led the research that resulted in high-definition television. He is author of more than 170 papers and three books, and holds 70 patents in the areas of picture processing, digital television and computer networks.
After retiring from Bell Labs in 2003, Netravali became a founder and managing partner of OmniCapital, a private equity firm based in Massachusetts and New Jersey. A native of India, he was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and is an IEEE Fellow. He has received the Padma Bhushan Award from the Indian government and the National Medal of Technology from President George W. Bush, among other honors.
The $100,000 cash prize will be awarded to Netravali at a ceremony in Summit, N.J., on Oct. 3, after a symposium on digital video and its societal impact at Nokia Bell Labs in Murray Hill, N.Y. The Marconi Society was established in 1975 by Gioia Marconi Braga, the daughter of radio inventor and Nobel laureate, Guglielmo Marconi.