Waibel Named Explorers Club Fellow

Eric AshtonThursday, July 27, 2023

The LTI's Alex Waibel was recently named a fellow of The Explorers Club for, among other things, piloting his small helicopter around the world.

Carnegie Mellon University's Alex Waibel recently joined the ranks of Neil Armstrong, Sir Edmond Hillary, President Teddy Roosevelt and other great trailblazers as a fellow of The Explorers Club.

Waibel, a professor in the School of Computer Science's Language Technologies Institute, has punctuated an impressive research and entrepreneurial career with exploration.

"Perhaps it may seem weird that a computer scientist would enjoy jumping out of a perfectly good airplane or diving to the depths of the ocean, but it really seemed natural to do," said Waibel, who also holds a faculty position at Germany's Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. "A thirst to see and understand our world, our minds and our humanity just naturally drives us to the limits."

Waibel's contributions to exploration include piloting a small helicopter around the world over the course of a decade, developing speech translators deployed and tested in the jungles of Southeast Asia, and diving to the Titanic to test technology that would allow videoconferencing from such depths.

"Exploration always comes with insights and surprises that trigger even more questions and new ideas. I made a lot of interesting friends beyond my scientific circles that way, and it also inspired new work in computer science," Waibel said.

Launched in 1905, The Explorers Club is dedicated to the advancement of field research, scientific exploration, resource conservation, and the idea that it is vital to preserve the instinct to explore. The club aims to inspire the exploration and protection of wild places while sustaining a spirit of fellowship among explorers and the scientific community.

To learn more about the club and its members, visit The Explorers Club's website.

For More Information

Aaron Aupperlee | 412-268-9068 | aaupperlee@cmu.edu