Gerard J. Foschini

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Gerard Joseph Foschini
Gerard Foschini.jpg
IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal recipient
Born (1940-02-28) February 28, 1940 (age 77)
Jersey City, New Jersey, U.S.
Residence New Jersey, U.S.
Nationality American
Alma mater Stevens Institute of Technology
Awards IEEE Fellow
IEEE Eric E. Sumner Award (2004)
IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal (2008)
Scientific career
Fields Mathematics, telecommunications
Institutions Bell Labs
Doctoral advisor Lawrence J. Wallen

Gerard Joseph Foschini (born 1940 in Jersey City, New Jersey), is an American telecommunications engineer who has worked for Bell Laboratories since 1961. His research has covered many kinds of data communications, particularly wireless communications and optical communications. Foschini has also worked on point-to-point systems and networks.


Foschini received the B.S.E.E. degree from the New Jersey Institute of Technology, the M.E.E. degree from New York University and a Ph.D. from the Stevens Institute of Technology. In December 1962, he joined AT&T Bell Laboratories where he has worked since. He has also taught at Princeton University and Rutgers University.

Within the telecommunications engineering field, he is best known for his invention of Bell Laboratories Layered Space-Time (BLAST).[1][2][3] This is a scheme for use in wireless communications which recommends the use of multiple antennas at both the transmitter and receiver. By careful allocation of the data to be transmitted to the transmitting antennas, multiple data streams can be transmitted simultaneously within a single frequency band — the data capacity of the system then grows directly in line with the number of antennas. This represents a significant advance on current, single-antenna systems.

Foschini's 1996 paper[1] (not published until 1998), "On limits of wireless communications in a fading environment when using multiple antennas", played a key role advancingmultiple-input multiple-output wireless systems. Shortly after that publication, in a technical memorandum for his employers[2], Foschini introduced the BLAST concept which is one of the most widely examined techniques in wireless communications research today. Among his later contributions, the paper offering a simplified form of the original BLAST architecture, called Vertical BLAST (V-BLAST)[3], has also resulted in intensive international research efforts. In 2002, Bell Laboratories' patent on BLAST was named by MIT's Technology Review Magazine as one of five "Patents to watch". According to the Institute for Scientific Information Foschini is in the top 0.5% of most widely cited authors.[4]

In 2002, Foschini received the Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award, an honor given to New Jersey people who have changed the world with their inventions; he has also received the Bell Labs Inventor's Award, Gold Award and Teamwork Award and holds the titles of "Distinguished Member of Staff, Distinguished Inventor" in the Laboratories.[5] Before his work on BLAST, Foschini had already been elected a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers in 1986, "for contributions to communications theory".[6]

Foschini received the 2008 IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal "For seminal contributions to the science and technology of multiple-antenna wireless communications."

In 2009 Foschini was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.[citation needed]


  1. Gerard. J. Foschini; Michael. J. Gans (1998). "On limits of wireless communications in a fading environment when using multiple antennas" (PDF). Wireless Personal Communications. 6 (3): 311–335. doi:10.1023/A:1008889222784. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2005-05-11. 
  2. Gerard. J. Foschini (1996). "Layered Space-Time Architecture for Wireless Communication in a Fading Environment When Using Multi-Element Antennas" (PDF). Bell Laboratories Technical Journal. October: 41–59. 
  3. Gerard J. Foschini; Glen D. Golden; Reinaldo A. Valenzuela; Peter W. Wolniansky (1999). "Simplified Processing for High Spectral Efficiency Wireless Communication Employing Multi-Element Arrays". IEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications. 17 (11): 1841–1852. doi:10.1109/49.806815. 
  4. Gerard J. Foschini; Z. Miljanic (1993). "A simple distributed autonomous power control algorithm and its convergence" (PDF). IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology. 42 (4). 


  1. ^ "Radio Blast" 19 August 2000 Justin Mullins New Scientist Magazine issue 2252
  2. ^ "WHAT'S NEXT; Bouncing Signals Push the Limits of Bandwidth" IAN AUSTEN January 16, 2003 New York Times
  3. ^ ISI Highly Cited Researchers Version 1.1: Foschini, G. J. Thomson Scientific Retrieved on 10 July 2007
  4. ^ "Bell Labs Researchers' Papers Prove Fertile for Peer". Bell Labs News & Features. Alcatel–Lucent. 2002-12-19. Archived from the original on 2006-10-17. Retrieved 2007-07-02. two independent institutions named them as being among the most cited scientific authors of our time 
  5. ^ "Gerard J. Foschini". Eric E. Sumner Award. IEEE. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
  6. ^ "Fellow Class of 1986". IEEE. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
Preceded by
Norman Abramson
IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal
Succeeded by
Robert McEliece