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'Smart-card' inventor dies in Paris

April 30, 2012 at 6:11 PM

PARIS, April 30 (UPI) -- Roland Moreno, the Egyptian-born French inventor of smart card technology found in phone cards, bank cards and SIM cards worldwide, has died at age 66.

Born in Cairo in 1945, Moreno was 29 when he patented the concept for a miniature electronic circuit board that could hold secure electronic data, an invention that would eventually earn him more than $130 million in royalties.

Moreno died in Paris but no details of his death have been released, Radio France Internationale reported Monday.

His patent became the foundation of so-called "smart cards," equipped with a miniature computer chip and now found around the world.

The technology also brought the SIM card used in cellphones.

A self-taught electronics engineer, Moreno set up a company, Innavatron, to exploit his smart card technology concept.

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