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Obltuary | Richard H. Lyon | 1929-2019
’ "’ ;' ’ Richard H. Lynn, former The areas of Dicks research and contributions included
Acoustical Society ofAmerica statistical energy analysis of complex structures, acoustical
(ASA) President and Gold scale modeling, signal processing for machinery diagnostics
' Medal recipient and a key and remote sensing, statistical phase analysis, transducers,
 ‘ ‘ V developer of statistical energy and sound quality; this diversity of study spoke to the great
1 x / analysis, passed away peace- breadth of his interests and knowledge. During his career,
~ _$ "' ‘ fully on Ianuary 21, 2019, at Dickwrote 5 books, over 200 papers, and numerous technical
' _ the age of89. reports. An avid sculler, he also took up learning the guitar
. in his later years. Of course, Dick being Dick, this led him
' Born and raised in Evans- to give an enthusiastic talk to the local ASA chapter titled “A
ville, IN, Dick graduated Structural Acoustician Examines His Guitars."
from Evansville College in 1952 as a physics major and
did his doctoral thesis at the Massachusetts Institute of Dickwas a Fellow of the ASA and the Institute of Noise Control
Technology (MIT), Cambridge, under Uno ingard, on the Engineering and a member of the National Academy of Engi-
turbulent excitation of strings, receiving his PhD in physics neering. Aside from the ASA Gold Medal, Dick also received
in 1955. Dick then joined the electrical engineering faculty its Silver Medal in Engineering Acoustics, the Rayleigh Medal
at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and in 1959 from the Institute of Acoustics, and the Per Bruel Gold Medal
began a nine-month stay at the University of Manchester, for Noise Control and Acoustics from the American Society of
UK, working with the statistician Maurice Bartlett on the Mechanical Engineers.
statistical analysis of interacting vibrating systems. It was
duringthis period that he combined his diverse background He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Jean Wheaton Lyon,
in physics, electrical engineering, and acoustics to formulate children Geofl‘rey, Katherine, and Suzanne, and several
ideas that became the basis of his development of statistical grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Dick will be truly
energy analysis. missed by all those who were fortunate enough to know and
be inspired by him.
Returning from the United Kingdom, Dick joined Bolt,
Beranek and Newman (BBN) where he continued his work Selected Publications by Richard H. Lyon
on sound-structure interaction and also served as head of L}’°“- R H- (19‘9l- Smjsfical =*“=lY‘l5 °fP°"" 31'fl9¢‘3°1f3“d (“P0559
‘be physical Sdmm Division and corporate vice President‘ .1; suuetures and rooms. 71.. Inurmzl .7/me Aeau.mcnISac|z!y a/Ammm
45, 545-565, hllps//dni.urylU.lIlI/1 1911412
During his time at BBN. Dick made significant con!Iibu- Lyon, R. 1-1. (1993). Progressive phase trends inmulti degree offreedom
(ions to Lhe  of stfuctufal a;;ousfic5_  [5015 systems. The Ilmrnrll oftlie Acauxticul Society afAmeI'iCa 73, 1223-1228.
'11“ 35 W“ ‘W 1“  13§§’,’§£'“1§."Z’I§é§?. ‘1C1?’.‘.L',-;.’ff1$Z,-,. .,.m,.,,,,.,-,.. m.,w,,.1. M.
In 1970, Dick joined the faculty of MIT as professor of Lly:}1l.‘,ml;t).Bll>,IS.“ll2ll)00). Designing for Product Saund Quality. Marcel
mechanical engineering, where he headed the Division Dekkfl-NEW Y°'l‘- I I
of Mechanics and Mam‘ 315’ Also in 1970, he joined Jerry Lyon, :1. 1-1., and Delong, IL G. (1995). Stntisua1lEnergyArmlysx's, 2nd ed,
Mm-mgmmugcmmagecouabme.wmcm ,;i,“;t*.:_",;’.f‘.“.;.:*;:;:,"f‘..;':.‘:‘;.‘:‘:;‘;‘;-,.,».,,.1..,.,...,...,....,,...,,..,
cialized in the application of statistical energy analysis. His oscillators. The Iaumal of the Acouxlical Society ofAmu1'cn 34, 623-539.
strong interest in and enthusiasm for acoustics inspired h"V“/"l"“"?/"l ‘”‘”-19‘“77
many of his students to pursue careers in the field and ' 
develop long-lasting ties with him. Dick retired from MIT Written by:
in 1995 and devoted himself full time to his consulting firm, David L. Bowen
RH Lyon Corp, where he and others focused on vibration- Email: dBowen@acentech.conJ
based mechanism diagnostics, audio, quiet product design, Acentech lnc., Cambridge, MA
and methods of designing for product sound quality.  
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