Hall of Fame 2015

Cataldo U. Falco

Working for RCA, Cataldo “Tal” Falco helped develop the first large screen color television. The system used a variety of new technologies which ultimately became the standard for all color television for decades to come. Falco also participated in development of precision radar and led design of digital controls and readouts, simpler and more accurate.

As manager of Aerojet Corporation’s Microwave Division, Falco assembled a team and directed the development and first space use of microwave radiometry for weather, ocean and land observation (fulfilling my vision and that of Dr. William Nordberg, NASA). This required extensive research in microwave radiometry theory. Microwave signatures were identified for atmospheric and geographic elements. A new electrically scanning microwave antenna, solid state Dicke switch (the ultimate standard for calibration), gallium arsenide diodes, and mixer for 60 GHz radiometer were developed. Falco designed software for analysis of global weather including temperature and water vapor at various altitudes, ocean temperatures and ice thickness, among others, and pseudo-color displays for data presentation.

Finally, at System Development Corp. (later Burroughs) Falco led a team that designed the first internet for NSA incorporating security at all levels. He led the design of the first complete version of TCP/IP and other internet protocols and gateways (predecessors to today’s routers).

In my career I took many risks. They resulted in my participation in many exciting engineering advancements. Do not be afraid to take risks. Work toward a career you find personally satisfying and professionally rewarding. As you advance in your career make time for yourself and your family and friends.