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Leo L. Beranek

Associate Professor of Communications Engineering, 1947 - 1958

President of Bolt, Beranek and Newman, 1952 - 1971

Associate Professor of Communications Engineering, 1947 - 1958

President of Bolt, Beranek and Newman, 1952 - 1971

Leo L. Beranek
Associate Professor of Communications Engineering 1947– 1958 
President of Bolt, Beranek and Newman 1952 – 1971

A world-renowned acoustics expert, Leo Beranek’s experience extends from designing noise reduction systems for World War II aircraft to designing and identifying the most acoustically perfect concert halls and opera houses around the globe. His book, Acoustics, is still considered the classic textbook in the field and he is a National Medal of Science winner. Dr. Beranek was one of the founders and served as president of Bolt, Beranek and Newman (now BBN Technologies), one of the world’s largest acoustical consulting firms. 

Highlights of this interview include:

  • Working his way through college as a radio and small appliance repairman.
  • Combining a love of music and engineering into eight decades of success in acoustics.
  • Efforts to improve defense radar systems for the military.
  • Role Bolt, Beranek, and Newman played in examining bullet noise in the Abraham Zapruder film that determined the sequence of events in the President John F. Kennedy assassination.
  • Commitment to teaching at MIT while building a business.

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