Distinguished Achievement and Contributions Award

Masahiro MORIKURA

Masahiro MORIKURA  Professor Morikura graduated from Department of Electrical Engineering‡U, Faculty of Engineering, Kyoto University, in 1979 and completed his masterfs course at the same university in 1981. He joined Yokosuka Electrical Communication Laboratory, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Public Cooperation (now NTT) the same year. He became a senior research engineer, a group leader of NTT Wireless System Laboratories in 1997, and a manager of the Planning Department, NTT Information Sharing Laboratory Group, in 2005. Since 2007, he has been a professor of the Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University.
   Professor Morikura has been devoted to research and education in wireless communication engineering over a long period and has made numerous achievements. In particular, he has made significant contributions to the research and development of OFDM for wireless LAN systems and the formulation of related standards both in Japan and abroad. He proposed a packet mode OFDM scheme, an original technology applying OFDM to packet mode transmission, which is essential for wireless LAN systems, and successfully implemented it in commercial wireless transmission systems. Through this endeavor, he has made significant contributions to subsequent wireless communication engineering.
   For packet mode OFDM, he invented a transmission technology that enables signals to be demodulated using only received packet information, a very difficult to achieve with conventional technologies. He also invented high-accuracy demodulation technology. Using these technologies, he developed an OFDM wireless LAN system and succeeded for the first time in the high-speed transmission of data using the packet mode OFDM scheme. In 1997, he used the proposed scheme to boost the transmission bit rate by more than one order of magnitude, from 2 Mbit/s, the highest bit rate achievable then, to 54 Mbit/s. This high bit rate made true multimedia transmission, i.e., transmission of video, possible and was in sharp contrast to a bit rate of 11 Mbit/s that could be achieved with IEEE 802.11b, a standard developed about the same time.
   Professor Morikura was the team leader in a project for the development and international standardization of OFDM wireless LAN systems. In this capacity, he formulated the projectfs R&D policy, executed the project, and developed a prototype OFDM wireless LAN system. In addition, he led the development of a commercial system, the standardization of IEEE 802.11a, the worldfs first field test of interoperability of IEEE 802.11a-compliant wireless LAN systems, and the commercial introduction of Japanfs first hotspot service that uses public wireless LANs. He also greatly contributed to standardization activities in Japan. In particular, he contributed to the formulation of the technical standards for the use of the 5-GHz band by serving as a member of the Telecommunications Technology Council, Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, and as chief of the working group of its successor, the Information and Communications Council, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
   Furthermore, the packet mode OFDM scheme, a technology that owes much to his contribution, has made an enormous impact on the subsequent developments in the wireless communication field. This is evident from the fact that all wireless access systems that have emerged later, such as WiMAX, UWB, and LTE/LTE-A, are based on OFDM.
   In Kyoto University, Professor Morikura has been devoted to the further development of the wireless communication field. In particular, he provides research guidance and cultivates human resources in the field of wireless LAN technology. He also contributes to the policy-making of various governmental agencies. In this way, he energetically involves himself not only in education and research but also in policy-making and administration related to wireless technology.
   In recognition of these achievements, Professor Morikura has received numerous awards, including IEEE 802.11 WG Certificate of Appriciation from IEEE, the Medal with Purple Ribbon, the Maejima Hisoka Award, the Minster of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Award, the Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications Award, and an Achievement Award from IEICE. He has been designated a fellow by IEICE. He has served in a number of IEICE posts, including secretary of the Publications Committee, director of Accounting and Finance, and president of the Communications Society.
   As described above, his achievements in and contributions to the information and communication field have been outstanding, and we are convinced that he fully deserves to be a recipient of the Distinguished Achievement and Contributions Award.
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