Together with colleagues Gisle Bjøntegaard and Gary J. Sullivan, Thomas Wiegand was a leading figure in the creation of the ground-breaking H.264/MPEG4-AVC coding standard for the compression, transmission, recording, and storage of digital video. H.264/MPEG4-AVC has impacted technology ranging from smart phones to Blu-Ray disc players and broadcast television. Released in May 2003, the new standard was a major improvement over the previous H.262/MPEG-2 video coding standard, with not only better compression capability but also the flexibility to support a wide range of platforms and applications, including handheld mobile devices, Blu-Ray players, Internet video streaming, and HDTV. Dr. Wiegand, who served as an associate chair of the Joint Video Team committee, was responsible for editing the evolving standard, and also made many technical contributions. His proposals became the basis of the scalable and three-dimensional video extensions as well as the High Profile, which is currently the most widely used profile of the standard, addressing HDTV and Blu-Ray applications.
Dr. Wiegand is an IEEE Fellow and currently a professor and chair of the Image Communication Laboratory at the Berlin Institute of Technology, and joint head of the Image Processing Department at the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications at the Heinrich Hertz Institute in Berlin, Germany.