George Heilmeier began his career at RCA's Sarnoff Research Center where he discovered that an applied voltage could change the color of dye-doped liquid crystals in the 1960s.
After leaving government service, Heilmeier applied his catechisms to
a variety of industries, from Texas Instruments (TI) where he served as
chief technology officer in the 1980s, to Bellcore (now Telcordia)
where he served as president and chief executive officer in the 1990s.
Heilmeier is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the
Defense Science Board and the National Security Agency Advisory Board.
He also serves on the boards of Fidelity Investments, Teletech Holdings
and the Board of Overseers of the School of Engineering and Applied
Science of the University of Pennsylvania.
A Philadelphia native,
Heilmeier earned his EE from the University of Pennsylvania and his
doctorate in solid-state electronics from Princeton University. He holds
15 patents and innumerable awards including the Kyoto Prize, IEEE David
Sarnoff Award, two Department of Defense Distinguished Civilian Service
medals, and in 2012 the Charles Stark Draper Prize, which he shared
with Wolfgang Helfrich, Martin Schadt and T. Peter Brody who developed
his seminal LCD discoveries into the modern active-matrix twisted
nematic configuration used today.
* Heilmeier’s original
LCD used a method he called dynamic scattering, which Helfrich and
Schadt improved with the twisted nematic field effect which drastically
cut LCD power consumption. Brody later invented the active matrix drive
circuitry which enabled the faster response times needed to use LCDs for
motion video on television.
Click on image to enlarge.
George Heilmeier invented the LCD before becoming Director of DARPA,
CTO at Texas Instruments and CEO of Bellcore.