With his research into wireless communication via infrared light, Professor Ton Koonen is one of the six nominees for the Huibrettsen Prize 2018. On 8 October, KNAW chairman Wim van Saarloos will announce the winner during the Evening of Science. The Huibregtsen Prize is awarded annually to a research project that is ‘socially innovative’.

Ton Koonen has been nominated for his solution to disruptions and overloading of WiFi networks. In his approach, an invisible infrared beam goes from the router to one receiver only and on to no one else. These ‘pencil bundles’ offer ultra-high data capacity, are difficult to tap, safe for the eyes and very energy-efficient.

The jury of the Huibregtsen Prize ‘values this apparently simple solution, which requires a great deal of scientific innovation, for example in the development of new transmitters and a mechanism by which mobile devices pass on their location to the transmitter. In so doing, Koonen always keeps in mind that his system can only be successful if it is cheap, simple and solid, and he is looking for collaborations to actually get his system implemented in practice.’

Subscribe to IO on Telegram!

Want to be inspired 365 days per year? Here’s the opportunity. We offer you one "origin of innovation" a day in a compact Telegram message. Seven days a week, delivered around 8 p.m. CET. Straight from our newsroom. Subscribe here, it's free!

Subscribe!

The other 5 nominees are Prof. Deniz Başkent (UMC Groningen), Prof. Dr. Manfred Kayser (Erasmus MC), Prof. Dr. Marike Knoef (University Leiden), Prof. Dr. Robert Sauerwein (Radboud UMC) and Detlef van Vuuren (Planning Bureau for the Environment).

The Huibregtsen Prize was established in 2005 by the board of the Foundation for the Evening of Science & Society and was named after Mr Wouter Huibregtsen. The prize is awarded to a recent research project that is scientifically innovative with clear social relevance. The award will be presented at the Evening of Science & Society on 8 October 2018 in the Ridderzaal in The Hague, and consists of a sculpture, ‘De Denker’ (The Thinker), by visual artist Wil van der Laan, €25,000 earmarked for research activities, and a workshop offered by the Lorentz Center in Leiden.

Source: press release TU/e

Support us!

Innovation Origins is an independent news platform that has an unconventional revenue model. We are sponsored by companies that support our mission: to spread the story of innovation. Read more.

At Innovation Origins, you can always read our articles for free. We want to keep it that way. Have you enjoyed our articles so much that you want support our mission? Then use the button below:

Doneer

Personal Info

About the author

Author profile picture