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2016 alumnus named to Forbes Under 30 list for manufacturing and industry

By Joe McAdory

Published: Jan 19, 2023 12:07:00 PM

Allyson McKinney is CEO and founder of SoloPulse, a radar signal processing and data transmission technology company. Allyson McKinney is CEO and founder of SoloPulse, a radar signal processing and data transmission technology company.

Allyson McKinney, a 2016 electrical and computer engineering graduate, was recently named to Forbes’ Under 30 list for manufacturing and industry.

McKinney, CEO and founder of SoloPulse, a radar signal processing and data transmission technology company, is pursuing a doctorate in electrical and computer engineering at Georgia Tech and founded SoloPulse in 2022.

“Being a Forbes Under 30 lister has been one of the most humbling and exciting experiences of my life,” said McKinney, who is originally from Birmingham. “To be recognized amongst such amazing people is an honor. For me, personally, this award feels all encompassing. I have put in lot of work on my technical and business development while taking some big risks. This award makes the blood, sweat and tears worth it. It also has made me incredibly thankful for my family and community for the support in getting here.”

SoloPulse creates proprietary signal processing software which enables radar to perform at its truest potential. “This means that existing radar hardware is now capable of producing point cloud resolution radar images at all ranges with a single sensor,” said McKinney. “SoloPulse plans to begin by partnering with cutting edge automotive innovators to scale them from Advanced Driver Assistance Systems to full level 5 autonomy via our software platform.”

Potential commercial applications include 1) radars that search, track and discriminate stationary and moving objects in the air and ground, 2) radar sensors for self-driving cars, and 3) hologram recording/reconstruction devices, and many other applications that rely on computed imaging.

Though SoloPulse technology was developed at Georgia Tech, McKinney credited her Auburn education for sparking her career interests, providing her with a “broad understanding of the world of engineering.”

“At Auburn, I was able to explore multiple focuses inside electrical engineering, giving me a strong foundational base to connect different parts of the engineering discipline,” said McKinney, who credited her experience as Cupola toward refining her leadership capabilities. “One professor who had a great impact on understanding that different disciplines are all connected was Dr. (Stuart) Wentworth. He shared with us that his undergrad degree was in chemical engineering but during his PhD, his work was technically in electrical engineering. The idea that engineers don’t have to stay in one lane was extremely fundamental in my professional growth.”

She added that the entrepreneurial spirit is key to innovative success within industry.

“Engineering and entrepreneurship absolutely go hand in hand,” she said. “Entrepreneurship is about seeing people have a problem, or pain point, and creating the solution. Engineering is about finding, solving, and preventing problems. I think the greatest thing an engineer that wants to be an entrepreneur can do is learn about customer discovery. If enough people say they have a problem and you believe you have the solution, you have a product and maybe even a business.”  

Media Contact: Joe McAdory, jem0040@auburn.edu, 334.844.3447

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