It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden and untimely death of Earl McCune, IEEE Fellow (‘18) on May 27, 2020, in Santa Clara, California, USA. He was 63 and is survived by his wife, Barbara. At the time of his passing, Earl was a Professor of Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands, a tireless and long-time IEEE volunteer, as well as CTO and cofounder of Eridan Communications, Inc., California, USA. Earl’s longstanding passion for sustainable and energy-efficient radio frequency communications was an essential part of Eridan’s founding inspiration, and his colleagues are deeply saddened to lose his vision, steady leadership and generous spirit. That vision and commitment will also be missed by the IEEE communities that relied on his expertise in developing standards, guiding a roadmap for future network generations, or his willingness to provide necessary reality checks. Although Earl’s time at Delft was sadly cut short, the staff and students of the Microelectronics Department will always remember him for his boundless enthusiasm, humor and unselfish commitment to education and research in the field of wireless communication. His expertise and devotion to radio electronics — and equally importantly— his ability to bring all kinds of students, scientists and businesspeople together, and inspire them with his ideas and dreams, will be greatly missed in Delft, in California, and by his many friends and collaborators around the world.

Doug Kirkpatrick
Eridan Communications, California, USA

John Schmitz
Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands

Ashutosh Dutta
IEEE Future Networks Initiative


Earl McCune (S’78–M’79–SM’97–F’18) received the B.S.E.E./C.S. degree from the University of California (UC), Berkeley, CA, USA, the M.S.E.E. degree from Stanford University, and the Ph.D. degree from UC Davis, CA, USA. He was a Silicon Valley serial entrepreneur, with 93 issued U.S. patents and the author of two books. His research interests included RF circuits and systems, including modulation design, with an emphasis on the joint optimization of throughput and energy efficiency while also minimizing implementation cost. He was an emeritus MTT Distinguished Microwave Lecturer, a member of multiple IEEE conference and standards committees, and served as the Chair of the Energy Efficient Communications Hardware Standards Working Group. His considerable work experience included stints at NASA, Hewlett-Packard, Watkins-Johnson, Cushman Electronics, Digital RF Solutions (start-up #1), Proxim, Tropian (start-up #2) and Panasonic, and Eridan (start-up #3) where he was CTO. He was a Professor of Delft University of Technology, where he held the chair of sustainable wireless systems.