2006 Technical Excellence Award Recipients

Dr. Robert G. AtkinsDr. Robert G. Atkins
For his leadership in developing advanced system architectures and his unique ability to develop new architectures for addressing complex, nontraditional problems.

Dr. Robert G. Atkins is Leader of the Advanced Capabilities and Systems Group at MIT Lincoln Laboratory. He holds SB, SM, and PhD degrees in electrical engineering from MIT, awarded in 1987, 1988, and 1993, respectively.

Dr. Atkins joined Lincoln Laboratory in 1985 as an MIT Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department VI-A Program intern. He continued work with the Laboratory throughout his graduate studies under National Science Foundation and Department of Defense fellowships. Since joining Lincoln Laboratory full time in 1993, he has worked on novel solutions and architectures in a wide variety of areas, including electromagnetic modeling, combat identification, surface surveillance, and air defense systems analysis. He became an assistant leader in the Systems Analysis Group in 1999 and an associate leader in the Sensor Exploitation Group in 2000. Dr. Atkins has led the development of new methods for aircraft and ballistic missile RF signature modeling, new techniques and architectures for air vehicle identification, and systems approaches to homeland defense, automatic target recognition, export control issues, and other areas.

Recently, Dr. Atkins has focused on the assessment and rapid development of critical new combat capabilities to address shortfalls in the areas of force protection and counter asymmetric warfare. He has led Laboratory coalition teams in several rapid-development efforts for novel prototype capabilities. He is the recipient of a 2004–2005 MIT Team Award for one such rapid development. A second rapid-development effort was recently recognized by Secretary of the Air Force Michael Wynne in a letter of commendation to the Laboratory.

For a number of years, Dr. Atkins has served at the Laboratory as a member of the New Technology Initiatives Board; he is now serving as a member of the Strategic Core Technology Group at the Laboratory.

Mr. Lawrence M. CandellMr. Lawrence M. Candell
For his contribution to developing new optical and radar sensors for communications and surveillance systems.

Mr. Lawrence M. Candell is Leader of the Advanced Space Systems and Concepts Group at MIT Lincoln Laboratory. He holds SB and SM degrees in electrical engineering and an SB degree in management, all from MIT. He specializes in signal processing, electro-optical systems, and optical communications.

Mr. Candell started at Lincoln Laboratory in 1986 as an MIT Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department VI-A Program intern. In 1989, he joined the Laboratory full time in the Countermeasures Technology Group, designing jammers, specialized "set-on" receiver systems, and high performance RF direction-of-arrival systems. Two years later, he became involved with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's weather satellites, performing analysis and design of next-generation geostationary infrared imaging and sounding instruments. In 1996, he became a group leader in the Sensor Technology and Systems Group and was responsible for running the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) program. In 1999, he led the formation of the Advanced Space Systems and Concepts Group, which has focused on the design of novel electro-optical systems for surveillance and communications.

Dr. Candell has contributed to cutting-edge imaging systems, ranging from gigapixel cameras for persistent surveillance to million-frame-per-second cameras for analyzing missile defense missions. He has developed not only ground-based advanced sensor prototypes, but also sensor prototypes for air, rocket, and space platforms. He was the associate program manager for the Mars Laser Communications Demonstration, responsible for the development of a distributed aperture receiving system that could successfully decode with efficiencies of nearly 3 bits/photon.

In addition, Dr. Candell has served as a member and co-chair of the New Technology Initiatives Board and the Strategic Core Technology Group. He has also been involved with management effectiveness at the Laboratory, serving as the chair of the Group Leader Management Effectiveness Committee and helping to organize the Group Leader Offsite programs.


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