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Mike Barron
Mike Barron

Internal News - 03 February 2006

Lifetime achievement award for researcher

Mike Barron, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering, has been awarded the prestigious Rayleigh Medal from the Institute of Acoustics.

Dr Barron is a leading researcher in the field of auditorium acoustics. His work has included projects on 3D acoustics in concert halls (known as ‘spatial impression’), physical scale modelling and a comprehensive acoustic survey of British auditoria, on which he based his book Auditorium Acoustics and Architectural Design, published in 1993.

After studying engineering at Cambridge, Dr Barron completed a PhD in acoustics at the University of Southampton. He joined the Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering at Bath as a Lecturer in 1989, and is a partner in the London and Bath-based acoustics consultancy firm Fleming & Barron.

The Rayleigh Medal is awarded in recognition of an outstanding contribution to the field of acoustics. It is normally presented to a UK acoustician in even numbered years and an overseas acoustician in odd numbered years. The medal is named after John William Strutt, Third Baron Rayleigh (1842-1919), who conducted both experimental and theoretical research in virtually every branch of the subject.

On winning the award Dr Barron said: “Auditorium acoustics is a very specialised area and I don’t have much face-to-face contact with other people in my field. It is fantastic to get such international recognition of my work.”

Dr Barron is currently researching ways to optimise acoustics for performers in concert halls so they can hear each other and themselves; the study includes working with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.