Ingo Wolff

Panelist: “An Evening of Innovation” Sponsored by Qualcomm


A spirited pioneer and champion of electromagnetic theory and applications in communication technology, Ingo Wolff’s contributions to numerical techniques for the analysis of electromagnetic fields have advanced the design of radio frequency (RF) and microwave components, circuits, and antennas as well as the solving of electromagnetic compatibility problems. Capitalizing on the dramatic advances in computer technology, Wolff recognized that the finite difference time domain (FDTD) method could potentially serve as a powerful computational engine for the full-wave analysis of complex, three-dimensional microwave- and millimeter-wave structures with arbitrary distributions of complex materials. Exploiting features such as parallel processing and special coding adapted to the architecture of different computers, Wolff and his research team developed an electromagnetic field simulator that today is one of the best, fastest, and most accurate electromagnetic field simulators. Based on the FDTD method, the EMPIRE-XPU electromagnetic field simulator enables engineers to simulate structures as small as bond wires to large systems such as entire aircraft accurately and in a very short time. In 1992, Wolff founded the Institute for Mobile and Satellite Technology (IMST) GmbH, which very quickly developed technologies including radar circuits in the millimeter-wave range for level measurement in large containers, RF circuits and planar antennas for wireless communication, car radios with integrated telephones, car-to-car communication systems, wireless sensor systems, and complete smart city systems. IMST has become a major European player at the forefront of telecommunications research and development. He is also a pioneer of using low-temperature co-fired ceramic (LTCC) technology for communications satellite antennas and circuits as well as high-density microwave monolithic circuits using co-planar waveguides. Wolff’s recent work includes a new circuit technology based on dielectric image lines for circuits in the sub-THz range that could play a key role in 6G mobile radio systems.

An IEEE Life Fellow, recipient of the 2002 IEEE MTT-S Microwave Career Award and the 2013 Outstanding Career Award from the European Microwave Association, Wolff has been the president and CEO (until 2018) and research director (until 2021) with the Institute for Mobile and Satellite Technology (IMST) GmbH, Kamp-Lintfort, Germany. In 2021 he retired after 58 years work in science and education.