SVEN DODINGTON: Technical Biography


Sven H. Dodington (SM58, F56) was born in Vancouver, May 22, 1912, and received an A.B. from Stanford University in 1934. From 1935 to 1941 he was employed by Scophony Ltd. of London and New York, principally in the design of large-screen TV projectors (14 ft. x 10 ft., 405 and 441 lines), which operated briefly in London and New York theaters before World War II. In 1941 he joined ITT in New York and has been with them since. From 1941 to 1945 he headed much of the Allied effort on airborne radar counter-measures of the deceptive type known as "Moonshine." Two hundred of these radars were produced before V-J Day. From 1945 to 1958 he headed the ITT radionavigation laboratory in Nutley, NJ, which laid the groundwork for today’s Distance Measuring Equipment (DME) and for which he is cited in the Pioneer Award. As part of this effort, he personally introduced crystal control to the 1000-mHz band, introduced the Ferris discriminator, and selected the specific interrogation and reply frequencies, the channel spacings, pulse codes, pulse shapes, and the channel-pairing plan with VHF omnidirectional range/instrument landing system. Not only did he do the system design, but most of the rf hardware, both airborne and ground, was of his own design. The DME system was adopted by the FAA in 1956 and by the International Civil Aeronautics Organization in 1959; it is now installed in over 120 countries, in all the world’s airliners, in most western military aircraft (as part of tactical air navigation) and in over 50,000 general aviation aircraft. From 1958 to 1969 he was vice president of the ITT Avionics Division and since 1969 has been with the ITT Technical Department in New York, where he is a consultant on avionics and radio navigation. He holds some 50 patents.

A Fellow of the IEEE since 1966, he served as chairman of the Aerospace and Navigation Electronics (ANE) Group 1962-63, was secretary of the team that formed Aerospace and Electronic Systems out of ANE, Aerospace Military Electronics and Space Electronics and Telemetry in 1965, and he was chairman of AES 1966-67. He has also served as Chairman of the Board of the IEEE National Aerospace Electronics Conference and as chairman of the IEEE Fellow Committee. Since 1969 he has been a Technical Advisor to the Radio Technical Commission for Aeronautics. His most recently published work is the electronic navigation chapter in McGraw-Hill’s Electronics Engineers’ Handbook (2nd edition due in 1980). In October 1979 he chaired the first radionavigation users workshop, sponsored by the Institute of Navigation and the Department of Transportation.

Return to Top Page