Walter Leeb received the MSc and DrSc degrees in electrical engineering from the Vienna University of Technology, Austria. In the 1970s, he spent two post-doctoral years at NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, USA. Later he obtained the Habilitation for Optical Communications and Laser Techniques degree. He started to work at the Institute of Communications and Radio-Frequency Engineering, Vienna University of Technology, as research assistant, became a lecturer, and was a professor for optical communications from 1982 to 2007. He performed, directed, and managed research and development work in the area of optoelectronic devices and optical data transmission systems. Many of his research contracts performed for the European Space Agency (ESA) were related to intersatellite laser links. Recently he also became engaged in stellar interferometry, quantum communications using entangled photons, and optical detection of pulsars and of extraterrestrial intelligence. In the last years he contributed to the development of large, laser-based video screens for three-dimensional displaying.
In the beginning, my research in the field of optical communications was dominated by a cooperation with the European Space Agency (ESA). It was directed towards intersatellite and ground-to-satellite laser links and included
- Space laser communication systems
- Laser modulation
- Optical receivers (heterodyne/homodyne/EDFA pre-amplified)
- Doppler wind lidar
- Optical array antennas
- Optical communication links to high-altitude platforms (HAPs)
- Quantum key distribution using entangled photons
Later on I became engaged in
- Optical printed circuit boards
- Stellar interferometry
- Optical detection of pulsars and search for extraterrestrial intelligence.
In the last years I also contributed to the development of large, laser-based video screens for three-dimensional displaying.