Franklin and Mike Valentine donated money to AMSAT GEO P4B development that got us all the way to yes from the USAF and NASA. He was always after me to do more for SETI Institute and the Allen Telescope Array.   He was instrumental in support of first four Microsats.  When we got the flight computers,  they arrived "some assembly required". He ordered the Qualcomm microelectronics lab to help fix the assembly issues with the first ever 8 layer boards flown to orbit.  When we had things to discuss, we would ride around in his big white Cadillac convertible. The back seat was loaded with empty soda cans.  He was infamous at Qualcomm for occasionally dumping many of the cans near his parking spot. The grounds crew was prepared and cleaned them up quickly. 

Whenever I visited in the newer building that contained his office, he encouraged me to ride his Segway around the floor, where all the C suite offices were located. 

I will miss this brilliant eccentric engineer. RIP Franklin.


On Fri, May 13, 2022, 11:52 AM Phil Karn <> wrote:
Last night I got the sad news that Franklin Antonio, N6NKF, one of the
founders of Qualcomm and my boss for most of my 20 years there, has
passed away.

In recent years he'd turned to philanthropy, giving $30M to the
University of California San Diego (UCSD) for a building named after
him. The dedication was just two days ago, and he didn't show up.

He'd also donated $3M to the Allen Telescope Array for a new broadband
antenna feed, but more importantly he had provided them with a lot of
engineering management and guidance that will be impossible to replace.

AMSAT members probably know him best as the author of the Instant Track
orbital tracking software that AMSAT sold for many years.



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