Gary Sullivan and team to receive an Engineering Emmy

04 October 2017

Gary Sullivan
Gary Sullivan
Image from his SPIE video

SPIE Fellow Gary Sullivan, an engineer and video architect with the Microsoft Corporation, is co-chair of the Joint Collaborative Team on Video Coding (JCT-VC), which has been selected by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences to receive an Emmy® Award at the 2017 Primetime Emmy Engineering Awards on 25 October 2017.

Engineering Emmys are presented to an individual, company or organization for engineering developments that considerably improve existing methods or innovations that materially affect the transmission, recording or reception of television.

According to the Academy’s news release, the JCT-VC was selected for developing High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC), which enables efficient delivery in ultra-high-definition (UHD) content over multiple distribution channels. This new compression coding has been adopted, or selected for adoption, by all UHD television distribution channels, including terrestrial, satellite, cable, fiber and wireless, as well as all UHD viewing devices, including traditional televisions, tablets and mobile phones.

The JCT-VC is a group of engineers from the Video Coding Experts Group of the International Telecommunication Union and the Moving Picture Experts Group of the International Organization for Standardization and the International Electrotechnical Commission. The team that developed the HEVC standard included representatives from about 200 industry and academic institutions around the world.

In 2010, Sullivan and his co-chair of the JCT-VC Jens-Rainer Ohm, presented on ‘Recent developments in standardization of high efficiency video coding (HEVC)’ at SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications in San Diego, where they reported that the then-new standardization initiative had resulted in the development of the JCT-VC in an effort to provide significantly better compression capability.

In addition to presenting at SPIE events, Sullivan is very involved in conference programming having served on program committees, as session chair, and as a panel member. He has published with SPIE dozens of times. For his breakthrough work in the industry and his consistent contributions to the Society, Sullivan earned the rank of Fellow in 2009.

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