Sunday, June 22, 2008

In Memorium: Zenith's Carl G. Eilers, Father of Stereo FM and Stereo TV

Carl G. Eilers, considered the "Father of Stereo FM Radio and Stereo Television Sound," for pioneering work during his 50-year career at Zenith Electronics, has passed away at the age of 83. Over the years, Eilers had been granted 21 U.S. patents, and authored numerous technical papers and articles.

Eilers joined Zenith in 1948 after receiving his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Purdue University. Through 1961, he worked on the world's first pay television system, Zenith Phonevision, earning key patents on subscription TV technologies. During that period, Eilers led Zenith's development effort on stereophonic FM radio broadcasting. The stereo FM standard he co-developed was first adopted by the Federal Communications Commission in 1961 and is still in use today around the world. Two decades later, as R&D manager, Eilers co-developed Zenith's MTS (multichannel television sound) stereo TV system, adopted by the industry in 1984. Through the 1990s, Eilers was a key member of Zenith's high definition television (HDTV) development team.