An 89-year-old Iowa native will be at the White House this week to receive the National Medal of Science from President Bush, what’s considered a lifetime achievement award for his pioneering research in several fields. Leo Beranek says earning the nation’s highest science honor follows a long career during which he first distinguished himself in the 1940s, when he earned accolades from -another- President.During World War Two, Beranek helped solve communication troubles for U.S. fighters and bombers flying at high altitudes during raids on Germany. His next project focused on improving U.S. radar defenses. The combined research won him a certificate of merit from then-President Truman. In some circles, Beranek is known as the “Dean of American Acoustics” as he did much research on the way sound travels and bounces in large rooms. He says “We did the acoustics for all of the United Nations buildings, then that led to our doing acoustics in buildings and (concert) halls all over the world.” Beranek published a book on that subject last week, his seventh book, entitled “Concert Halls and Opera Houses; Music, Acoustics and Architecture.” His sound research in the 1950s forced airlines to put mufflers on jets, and in the late ’60s, he led an M-I-T team in developing and building the Arpanet, an early form of the Internet. He says his team won the government contract to design and create the link between big university computers in different cities. The Solon native lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He’ll receive the National Medal of Science in a Thursday ceremony at the White House. Beranek says “I hope this award is an inspiration to young people, even coming from a small town like Solon, Iowa, to work hard and they might get somewhere in the world.”