Leo Beranek

Leo Leroy Beranek ( born September 15, 1914) is an American specialist in acoustics. He was a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and is one of the founders of Bolt, Beranek and Newman ( BBN ), a consulting firm for acoustics.

Beranek played piano early and grew up in Mount Vernon (Iowa). He studied at Cornell College in Iowa, where he made his bachelor's degree in 1936, while earning money with radio repairs. In 1940 he received his doctorate from Harvard University and was in World War II in the electro-acoustic laboratory at Harvard, where he worked on noise reduction in radio communication with aircraft. 1947 to 1958 he was Professor of Communications Engineering at MIT and in 1948 was one of the founders of BBN and its president from 1952 to 1971.

He is the author of a standard work on acoustics, which first appeared in 1954. As a specialist in acoustics, he examined ( and designed by acoustic field ) many concert halls, which was reflected in his Book Release Music, Acoustics and Architecture from 1962.

From 1983 to 1986 he was on the board of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

He was born in 1952 a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and received the 2003 National Medal of Science. In 1975 he received the Gold Medal of the Acoustical Society of America, and in 1971 the Gold Medal of the Audio Engineering Society. He is an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects. In 2003 he received the Per Bruel Gold Medal of the ASME.


  • Acoustics, McGraw Hill 1954 Acoustical Society of America 1986
  • Publisher Istvan L. Ver: Noise and Vibration Control Engineering, Wiley 1992
  • Publisher: Noise and Vibration Control, 1971, new edition 1988
  • Concert Halls and Opera Houses: Music, acoustics and architecture, 2nd edition, Springer Verlag 2004 First as Music, acoustics and architecture, Wiley 1962