Dr John O’Sullivan


Australian Academy of Science

John has had an extensive career in wireless, signal processing and radiophysics in both research and commercial contexts. He worked with the Netherlands Foundation for Radio Astronomy for developing and major digital receiver system for the Westerbork telescope and rising to leadership of the engineering team for that telescope.

At CSIRO he led research a research group in signal processing and later, a group and projects in wireless communications which, among other outcomes, resulted in key technologies underpinning the now ubiquitous Wi-Fi wireless networking. This technology has been used in several billion devices worldwide. Other significant achievements are the leadership of a team which developed a single chip Fast Fourier transform processor which found application in military surveillance and astronomical applications.

His career has extended also to roles in various companies ranging from large (News Corp and Cisco) to system engineering roles in several technology startups (Radiata, G2, Taggle). He returned to technology research for radio astronomy with CSIRO on the Australian pathfinder (ASKAP) for the next generation international Square Kilometer Array radiotelescope.

He is the winner of the 2009 Australian Prime Ministers Prize for Science, the 2012 European Inventors Award, the 2010 Clunies-Ross medal, the 2015 CSIRO Chairman’s medal (ASKAP Phased Array Team) , 2009 CSIRO Chairman's medal (Wireless Network team), the 1992 CSIRO Medal (Development and Application of FFT Technology) and the 2013 MA Sargent award of Engineers Australia. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers Australia, Australian Academy of Science and Australian Academy of Technological Science and Engineering and has Honorary Doctorates at the Curtin University and Sydney University.

Batchelor of Science, Sydney University, 1967
Batchelor of Engineering, H1 and University Medal, Sydney University 1969
Ph D Engineering, Sydney University