The CSIRO team that invented a faster system for wireless local area networking – which later became the foundation of Wi-Fi in its most popular form today – has won a European Inventor Award 2012.

Inventors Dr John O’Sullivan, Dr Terry Percival, Mr Diet Ostry, Mr Graham Daniels and Mr John Deane were named as the winners of  the ‘Non-European countries’ category of the annual awards for the patented WLAN technology at an awards ceremony in Copenhagen overnight.
The technology, which has given us the freedom to work wirelessly in our homes and offices, is now estimated to be in more than three billion devices worldwide and expected to be in more than five billion devices worldwide by the time the CSIRO patent expires at the end of 2013.
This is the first time an Australian team has won the award since it was launched in 2006.
“We’re thrilled for the team to receive this international recognition for an invention that has had such a significant global impact,” said Nigel Poole, CSIRO’s Acting Group Executive for Information Sciences.
“It’s a technology that has changed how we work and how we live. The rapid expansion of indoor wireless communications is in part possible because of the WLAN technology invented by scientists at CSIRO in Australia.”
The EIA is presented in five categories: Industry, Research, SMEs, Non-European countries and Lifetime Achievement. Fifteen finalists were selected across all categories from almost 200 inventors and teams who were originally nominated, by an international jury comprising leading personalities from industry, science, politics and media.

About the European Inventor Award (EIA)

Launched in 2006, the European Inventor Award is presented annually by the European Patent Office, in co-operation with the European Commission and the country which holds the EU Council Presidency at the time of the award ceremony, which this year is Denmark. The award honours inventive individuals and teams whose pioneering work provides answers to the challenges of our age and thereby contributes to progress and prosperity. Nomination proposals are submitted by the public and by patent examiners at the EPO and Europe’s national patent offices. The finalists and, subsequently, the winners are chosen from among the nominees by a high-profile international jury, which includes prominent personalities from politics, business, media, science, academia and research.

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