Reinaldo A. Valenzuela
Current and next-generation cellular phones, wide-area wireless networks and WiFi systems have all been impacted by Reinaldo A. Valenzuela’s pioneering contributions. Spurred by the theoretical findings that tremendous increases in wireless capacity could be achieved with MIMO technology, under Valenzuela’s leadership, the group developed the “VBLAST” prototype, which incorporated eight transmission antennas and 12 receiver antennas, and achieved a spectral efficiency of 20 to 40 bits per second per hertz with an average signal to noise ratio of about 24 to 32 decibels. This demonstrated for the first time the practicality and potential of multiple antennas for wireless communications. Tests were conducted in urban, suburban and indoor settings to prove that the technology could successfully enhance wireless communications in challenging environments.