An IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Milestone, the prestigious international recognition of technological innovation and excellence in the IIEE areas of interest, was awarded to the invention of the innovative high-speed multiplier by Luigi Dadda, deceased in 2012. Luigi Dadda published in 1965 the first description of an optimized scheme for a digital circuit to compute the multiplication of unsigned fixed-point numbers in binary arithmetic. This circuit, still called ‘a Dadda Tree’, allowed the arithmetic units of microprocessor-based computers to execute complex arithmetic operations with a performance/cost ratio unequaled at that time and for several decades; Dadda’s conceptual design still constitutes the solid foundation for many research works and many industrial applications in the area of computer arithmetic.
Luigi Dadda, an academician and pioneer of informatics in Italy, has served as Rector of the Polytechnic in Milan from 1972 to 1984; he was member of the Academy since 1982.
To date, the recognition with an IIEE Milestone has been awarded only three times to Italian inventions, namely to the work of Alessandro Volta, Guglielmo Marconi and Enrico Fermi, all Academy members.