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Andrew Adams, winner of the 2018 Black Engineer Research Leadership Award, is chief of wireless capabilities at the John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory.

What has he done for you lately?

    • He inspires engineers to close radio frequency (RF) communications gaps
    • Serves as principal investigator for novel machine learning research techniques
    • Leads the applying of machine learning technology

His projects include an effort with Morgan State University to develop high-performance communication systems on low-cost software-defined radio platforms.    Currently, he serves as the Principal Investigator on a ground-breaking effort to use Machine Learning techniques for the autonomous detection of unknown communication signals.

“At 18, I joined the Navy as an avionics technician, stationed aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt during operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. This had a big impact on my life decisions,” Adams said in his acceptance speech at the 2018 BEYA STEM Conference.

“When I left the Navy in 1993, I became a radio technician at Thales (then Racal) Communications, working alongside engineers that inspired me to earn a degree. Since joining Applied Physics Laboratory in 2014, I’ve grown even more, and this award is a validation.”

Adams earned a master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Johns Hopkins University (JHU). At the JHU Applied Physics Laboratory, he assists in leading seven staff focused on military radio waveforms. Over 18 years, his contributions have impacted America’s critical communications capabilities and the ability to defend these systems against jamming, remotely detonated explosives, and cyber attack.

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