Sidney Metzger

Sidney Metzger
New York, NY, USA
Associated organizations
RCA (Radio Corporation of America), Communications Satellite Corporation
Fields of study
IEEE Award in International Communication


Sidney Metzger, Assistant Vice President and Chief Scientist of the Communications Satellite Corporation (COMSAT) was born on February 1, 1917 in New York. He graduated from New York University (BE in Electrical Engineering, 1937) and the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn (MEE, 1950). He received the James Loring Arnold Electrical Engineering Prize of NYU in 1937 as well as Tau Beta Pi from NYU and Sigma Xi from the Princeton Chapter. His interest in radio and microwaves started with his work at the U.S. Signal Corps Laboratories from 1939 to 1945 on the first Military Time Division Microwave radio relay system. He was responsible for the Signal Corps Laboratories part in development, tests and procurement of the first radio relay sets during that period.

In 1945, Mr. Metzger joined the Federal Telecommunication Laboratories of ITT (later ITT Laboratories) and contributed to and directed the developments of Multiplex Microwave systems, pulse code modulation systems and time division multiplex. He became division head responsible for all these developments and had the satisfaction to see their production and use expand rapidly.

This prepared him well for further achievements in satellite communications when he joined RCA in 1954, at the David Sarnoff Research Center. There he directed satellite communication system studies for the Air Force and the Army Ballistic Missile Agency. He prepared a first detailed plan for construction of a Satellite Communications Vehicle for the Army Signal Corps in October 1956. Later, he was made manager of the Communications Engineering Department, responsible for satellite projects SCORE, TIRUS and RELAY, the radio command of STRATOSCOPE II, and the studies for commercial communication satellite systems. In 1963, Mr. Metzger joined COMSAT as Manager for Engineering, was named Chief Engineer in 1967 and was Assistant Vice President and Chief Scientist. His contributions there in the last 13 years related to the success of the Intelsat Communication worldwide systems and their continued expansion for additional applications.

Mr. Metzger was a Fellow of the IEEE and an Associate Fellow of the AIAA. He was the Chairman of the Joint Technical Advisory Committee and a member of the Committee on Telecommunications of the National Research Council.

He has published many valuable papers from "Pulse Code Modulation" in 1947 to "Intelsat IV Satellite System Background" in 1972. During the same period he delivered 34 lectures in the U.S. and abroad, a dozen of his patents cover important subjects in the field, many on interesting modulation systems.

Mr. Metzger was highly respected by all his friends for many facets of his character-cooperation, patience and understanding of others. He stated himself that his hobby was his work to which he was fully dedicated. He had contributed to many committees in IEEE, ARS/AIAA, ARPS, NASA and OTP. Mr. Metzger and his wife Miriam had 3 children.