Students Staff

29 October 2014

Top industry award for acoustics expert

Professor Hawksford receives his award from President of the Institute of Acoustics William Egan

Professor Hawksford receives his award from President of the Institute of Acoustics William Egan

Emeritus Professor Malcolm Hawksford from the School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering has received the Peter Barnett Memorial Award from the Institute of Acoustics.

The annual award recognises outstanding contributions to the fields of electro-acoustics, speech intelligibility, and education in acoustics and electroacoustics.

President of the Institute of Acoustics William Egan told those attending: “Malcolm has contributed a vast amount towards the progression of electroacoustics from its later analogue stage through to the digital revolution. He has tackled difficult problems and has never given anything but an in-depth analysis and solution to each. The areas of crossover design for loudspeaker systems, multichannel sound reproduction, analogue-to-digital and digital-to-analogue conversion and system measurement have all greatly benefited by his research efforts.

“Professor Hawksford is well-deserving of the Peter Barnett Memorial Award for his sizeable contributions to the advancement of electroacoustics, his on-going research and for the impact he has had, and continues to have, on generations of audio and acoustics professionals through his passionate teaching and supervision.”

Professor Hawksford has contributed enormously to the field of electroacoustics over the past six decades. His contributions to the field of electroacoustics can be traced back to a publication in the June 1963 issue of Hi-Fi News, in which a 15-year-old Hawksford described the design and build of his very own console tape recorder. This early contribution set Professor Hawksford on course to provide an on-going stream of advancements to state-of-the-art electroacoustic engineering.

He began his academic career at Aston University in 1965, enrolling in one of the first electrical engineering courses in “light-current electronics” rather than power electronics. After graduation, he was awarded a BBC Research Scholarship to investigate methods to improve transmission technology for colour television, but he quickly shifted to audio and acoustics research.

After completing his PhD at Aston in 1972, Professor Hawksford took up a lecturing post at the University of Essex. He has been an Emeritus Professor at Essex since retiring in 2012, but continues to teach and remains active in research.

Professor Hawksford has specialised in projects involving loudspeakers, analogue and digital crossover networks, audio amplification, high-resolution audio, signal transmission and room acoustics. His research has gained him recognition and respect among professionals, as well as awards from the Audio Engineering Society including the AES Silver Medal for major contributions to engineering research in the advancement of audio reproduction.

At the University of Essex Professor Hawksford has taught and supervised numerous undergraduate and postgraduate students. He often says that student supervision is a particular passion of his, evident in the face that many of Professor Hawksford’s former students can now be found in prominent positions at major audio engineering firms and in academic roles at British universities.

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