IEEE Honors Micronas Chief Scientist for Development of Digital High-Definition TV in North America

Freiburg, January 18, 2006 - Micronas is proud to announce that Richard Citta, chief scientist at Micronas, has been presented with the 2006 IEEE Masaru Ibuka Consumer Electronics Award. Together with the award co-recipients Wayne Bretl and Wayne Luplow from Zenith Electronics Corporation, Citta developed the digital television transmission system that forms the technological heart of high-definition TV, now in widespread use in the United States. Sponsored by Sony Corporation, the award was presented at the 2006 IEEE International Conference on Consumer Electronics in Las Vegas.

Working together with a team of Zenith research engineers, Richard Citta created the digital high-definition technology now mandated by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to replace the nation's 65-year-old analog system. The technology they innovated is now in use at virtually every television station in the United States, sending robust transmissions with reduced interference and allowing the broadcast industry to tap previously unusable VHF and UHF TV broadcast channels.

As the transition from analog to digital TV in the U.S. nears completion in 2007, all new TV sets sold in this country will feature the VSB (Vestigial SideBand) demodulation technology, which takes a digital broadcast signal and turns it into the bit stream ultimately seen as a broadcast.

An IEEE Member, Richard Citta is now chief scientist at Micronas Semiconductor Inc. in Palatine, Illinois. Formerly of the Electronic Systems R&D laboratory at Zenith, he is the only two-time recipient of Zenith's highest technical honor, the Robert Adler Technical Excellence Award. Richard Citta also is a member of the Academy of Digital Television Pioneers.

About Micronas
Micronas (SWX Swiss Exchange: MASN), a semiconductor designer and manufacturer with worldwide operations, is a leading supplier of cutting-edge IC and sensor system solutions for consumer and automotive electronics. As a market leader in innovative, global TV system solutions, Micronas leverages its expertise into new markets emerging through the digitization of audio and video content. Micronas serves all major consumer brands worldwide, many of them in continuous partnerships seeking joint success. While the holding company is headquartered in Zurich (Switzerland), operational headquarters are based in Freiburg (Germany). Currently, the Micronas Group employs about 2000 people. In 2004, it generated EUR 624/USD 777/CHF 963 million in sales. For more information on Micronas and its products, please visit

About IEEE
IEEE is the world's largest technical professional society. Through its 365,000 members in 150 countries, the society is a leading authority on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. Dedicated to the advancement of technology, the IEEE publishes 30 percent of the world's literature in the electrical and electronics engineering and computer science fields, and has developed more than 900 active industry standards. The organization also sponsors or co-sponsors more than 300 international technical conferences each year. Additional information is available at

About the IEEE Masaru Ibuka Consumer Electronics Award
The IEEE Masaru Ibuka Consumer Electronics Award was established by the IEEE Board of Directors in 1987 to recognize outstanding contributions in the field of consumer electronics technology. It may be presented annually to an individual or team of up to three. In the evaluation process, the following criteria are considered: technical innovation, creativity, quality, timeliness, societal benefit, technology enhancement associated with achievement(s), leadership and professional contributions of the individual(s) identifiable with the achievements, and the quality of the nomination. For more information please go to

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