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Bob McGwier, N4HY, Co-Advises Virginia Tech DARPA Spectrum Challenge Team


Former AMSAT director and vice president for engineering Bob McGwier, N4HY, is advising one of two Virginia Tech teams named as finalists in the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Spectrum Challenge. McGwier, who chairs the ARRL software defined radio (SDR) working group, is director of research at Tech’s Hume Center in Arlington, Virginia. He shares Hume Center Team advising duties with Charles Clancy, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and director of the Hume Center. The Hume Center and Wireless@VT teams qualified among 15 finalists out of 90 competitors in the DARPA Spectrum Challenge qualification round in an international competition to develop strategies for clear communication in the presence of interference on a radio channel. They will compete with the 13 other teams for $25,000 in top prizes in the preliminary challenge in September and $50,000 in top prizes in the final challenge next March. The DARPA Spectrum Challenge was organized in response to the problem of growing interference among wireless devices that function in an increasingly congested radio spectrum. The challenge tasks teams with generating SDR protocols that transmit data quickly and accurately despite interfering signals. Both Virginia Tech teams include Amateur Radio licensees. — Virginia Tech



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