Great Structural Engineers
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Great Structural Engineers
Dearest Civileans;

Engineers have always made a difference. They are the thinkers and innovators that shape our world. Find out here about some of the greatest engineers of all time.

Ove Arup (1895 - 1988)
Sir Ove Nyquist Arup is generally considered one of the foremost engineers of the twentieth century. Groundbreaking use of precast concrete, structural glue and computer analysis helped to make Arup's reputation, and that of his firm, Arup. The multi-disciplinary company provided engineering, architectural, and other services for the built environment.
Notible projects included the The Sydney Opera House, which Arup worked on from 1957 to 1973. Before his death Arup received a Knighthood from both the British and Danish monarchy along with a plethora of industry commendations.

Sir John Fleetwood Baker (1901-1985)

Sir John Fleetwood Baker was one of the first winners of the Institution's Gold Medal award. During the 1930’s Baker carried out tests on buildings which brought a revelation that led to Baker’s life work on the development of the plastic theory of design.
During the Second World War, Baker was appointed Scientific Adviser to the Ministry of Home Security, focussing on reducing the impact of bombing of buildings, especially industrial sites and factories. For residential homes without a garden, Baker invented an indoor air raid Morrison Shelter, named after the Home Secretary, Herbert Morrison MP.

Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806 - 1859)

Considered the father of modern engineering, Brunel was the son of another eminent engineer, Marc Isambard Brunel. I K Brunel was elected to the Royal Society in 1830, when he was just 24. In 1833 he became chief engineer for the Great Western Railway.
As well as bridges, lighthouses and tunnels, Brunel designed the famous steamships SS Great Western (1837), SS Great Britain (1845) and SS Great Eastern (1858). Each ship was the largest in the world at the time of its launch.

Marc Brunel
French-born Marc Brunel worked on an enormous number of ingenious projects, including a suspension bridge, a series of (ultimately impracticable) compressed air engines, and the first double-acting marine steam engine. His last and greatest work, the construction of the Thames Tunnel was completed in 1843.

Gustav Eiffel (1832 - 1923)
A talented French engineer, Eiffel was most famous for his bridges and viaducts. Eiffel liked to work with new technology, especially wrought iron, designing the Eiffel Tower using this material. Another notable design was the Statue of Liberty, a gift from the people of France to the people of New York.

Oscar Faber (1886-1956)
Oscar Faber was the son of the Danish Commissioner of Agriculture in London. From 1911 onwards, Faber was influential in the development of the use of reinforced concrete in the UK, at a time when many engineers were distrustful of the material. Faber pioneered simple deflection load tests, and from them developed his theory of ‘Plastic yield in concrete’, and the resistance of reinforced concrete beams to shear.
Key projects include the bank of England, the House of Commons, including heating, ventilation and air conditioning, as well as Africa House and India House in London, and many factories. In 1992 he co-authored the book Reinforced Concrete Design with P.G.Bowie – a text which was to become a standard work. Oscar Faber was awarded a CBE in 1951 for his work on the house of commons.

Tony Hunt (1932 - present day)
Tony Hunt is one of Britain’s most highly regarded structural engineers. His career, spanning six decades, has involved working with a number of prominent architects and writing many authoritative books.
Hunt has wide experience in building structures of all types and materials but his speciality is in sophisticated steelwork, working closely with most of the leading architects in the UK and also in France. He is first and foremost a designer and is actively involved in the design development of projects. He lectures regularly in the UK, Europe, USA and Canada, acts as jury member for competitions and is a regular book reviewer.
His work has included a number of award winning structures including the Schlumberger Research Facility, Cambridge; Waterloo International Station, London and The Eden Project, Cornwall.

Fazlur Khan (1929 – 1982)
Khan was regarded as the Einstein of structural engineering, epitomising both structural engineering achievement and creative collaborative effort between engineer and architect. Khan's central innovation in skyscraper design and construction was the idea of the tube and bundled tube structural systems for tall buildings, and x-bracing. These innovations reduced loads, allowing skyscrapers such as the Sears tower in Chicago to be built.
Apart from many high rise buildings, Khan planned and designed the Hajj Terminal at the International Airport Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the U.S. Airforce Academy and The United Airlines Building complex.
Throughout his career Khan was presented with many honours, including the Oscar Faber medal from the Institution in 1973.

Guy Maunsell (1884-1961)
Guy Maunsell was the British civil engineer responsible for the design of the acclaimed World War II naval sea forts and army forts used in the defence of the UK's Thames and Mersey estuaries. Maunsell is best known for his innovative, practical maritime engineering which included the army seaforts. His view was always that the interests of the client would be best served by an integrated approach to design and construction.
In 1955 he founded the UK firm of Maunsell & Partners, a practice famed for its pioneering work using pre-stressed concrete in major bridges. The most famous example is the Hammersmith Flyover, completed in 1961, which made revolutionary use of pre stressed concrete as a construction method.

Peter Rice (1935 - 1992)
Peter Rice was an Irish structural engineer who worked on a number of high profile projects including the Centre Pompidou, the Sydney Opera House, Lloyd's of London, the Louvre Pyramid, the Mound Stand at Lord's Cricket Ground, Kansai International Airport and Stansted Airport.
Rice was known for his sympathetic attitude to design, along with a strategic approach, having a cool head and managing to realise ambitious artistic designs in concrete.

Felix Samuely (1902 – 1959)
Born in Germany in 1902, Felix Samuely first came to England in 1933. He is known as the engineer who carried out the structural analysis of the ramps, for the famous Berthold Lubetkin Penguin Pool at London Zoo, and for designing the first all-welded steel structure in the UK – the De la Warr Pavilion, Bexhill.
Before the Second World War, Samuely pioneered welded tubular steel construction. Known during the fifties as the architects’ engineer, Samuely engineered the famous Skylon, the iconic symbol of the 1950 Festival of Britain. He pioneered space structures and folded slab construction in concrete, steel and timber.

Robert Stephenson (1803 - 1859)
Robert Stephenson’s 'Rocket' placed the firm of Robert Stephenson & Co at the forefront of steam locomotive design. Robert Stephenson became Chief Engineer of the London and Birmingham Railway in 1833. During the 1840s he was consultant engineer on a great many railway schemes.
Stephenson was famed for the many bridges he designed, including the High Level Bridge in Newcastle upon Tyne (1849), the Britannia Tubular Bridge over the Menai Straits in Wales (1850) and the Royal Border Bridge at Berwick upon Tweed (1850).

Thomas Telford (1757 - 1834)
In 1787 Telford became surveyor of public works for Shropshire. In 1790 Telford built a bridge over the River Severn at Montford, followed by a canal to link the ironworks and collieries of Wrexham with Chester and Shrewsbury. This involved building the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, over the River Dee using a new method of construction consisting of troughs made from cast-iron plates and fixed in masonry.
After the completion of the Ellesmere Canal Telford moved back to Scotland to build the Caledonian Canal. Other works include the Menai Suspension Bridge (1819-1826), St Katherine's Docks (1824-1828) in London and more than 1,000 miles of road, including the main road between London and Holyhead.

Source: The Institution of Structural Engineers

It is just some of the few accomplished structural engineers..kindly share the others.
“We are prisoners of a necessary cause.”
I would like to add some of the prominent scientist & engineer that is known for his/her works that to some extent still in use today.

1. Louis Henri Navier: arguably the father of structural mechanics. Famous for his 3 principle: Equilibrium, compatibility and stress-strain relation.

2. Joseph Monier : Develop RC bending theory based on Navier 3 principle

3. Ray Clough and Edward Wilson: Teacher and Student, their collaboration in the early development of frame and finite element computer analysis without doubt shape today's world of structural engineering

4. William H Wittrick and Fred W Williams: Their famous " Wittrick-Williams Algorithm" probably is the first exact algorithm for vibration analysis of continuous system.

5. Firtz Leonhard : Pioneer of the modern cable stayed bridge

6. William Brown: Pioneer in aerofoil shape deck to increase aerodynamic stability

7. Jean Muller: Pioneer in match casting technology for segmental concrete box girder

8. Eugene Freyssinet and TY Lin: The former is pioneer of prestressed concrete, the later is probably the fanatic :)

9. Ludwig Prandtl, Theodore von Karman, Theodore Theodorsen and Werner Von Braun: The first one arguably the father of modern fluid mechanics, the second is the father of aerodynamics, the third is probably famous for his work in flutter theory that leads to a nightmare for today's aerodynamicist :D, the last is the rocket engineer that sent us to the moon.

10. Francis Wenham and John Browning: Collaborate to build probably the world first's wind tunnel

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They did a great job , but why didn't you mention thier nationalities ?.
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Professor Evgeny Oscarovich Paton (5 March 1870 – 12 July 1953; Ukrainian: Євген Оскарович Патон, Yevhen Oskarovych Paton) was a Soviet Ukrainian engineer who established the E. O. Paton Electric Welding Institute in Kiev. He was the father of Borys Paton.

Eugeny Paton was a pioneer researcher of the new joining – welding technology for the materials. Evgeny Paton created the methods of design of rational bridge spans, investigated the conditions of their operation, and suggested the methods to restore the damaged bridges. He carried out the research on calculation and strength of welded structures, mechanization of welding processes, and fundamentals of welding. He supervised the development of the method of automatic submerged arc welding. During the World War II Evgeny Paton supervised the design and production of the equipment and technology of the automatic welding of special steels, tanks, bombs, etc.

In Kiev in 1953 a fully welded steel construction Paton Bridge was built using technology developed by Evgeny Paton.

Yuri Vasilievich Kondratyuk (June 21, 1897–1942), a Ukrainian pioneer of astronautics and spaceflight. He was a theoretician and a visionary who, in the early twentieth century, foresaw ways of reaching the moon. He used an adopted pseudonym, while his birth name was Oleksandr Gnatovich Shargei.

Stephen P. Timoshenko (Ukrainian: Степан Прокопович Тимошенко, also written as (transliterated: Stepan Prokopovych Tymoshenko), December 22, 1878 – May 29, 1972), is reputed to be the father of modern engineering mechanics. He wrote many of the seminal works in the areas of engineering mechanics, elasticity and strength of materials, many of which are still widely used today.

Sergey Pavlovich Korolyov, (12 January 1907, Zhytomyr, Ukraine – 14 January 1966, Moscow, Russia), was the pioneer aerospace engineer and the lead Soviet rocket engineer and spacecraft designer during the Space Race between the United States and the Soviet Union in the 1950s and 1960s. He is considered by many as the father of practical astronautics.

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Oh my yes Timoshenko, he was truly gifted, if Navier is father of structural mechanics than Timeoshenko is the God. I once worked on vibration of Timoshenko's beam, well it gave me a headache.
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How about the late Tom Paulay and Robert Park?
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How about Sir Issac Newton? Those law's of motion are pretty important.
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T. Y. Lin well known pioneer of load balacing method prestreesing concrete. This method is well known in long span structural concrete bridges.

He got his idea while he was playing tradition Chinese past time games "mah Jong" with his friend.

Full Text:

Tung-Yen Lin (林同炎, pinyin: Lín Tóngyán) (November 14, 1912 – November 15, 2003) was a structural engineer who was the pioneer of standardizing the use of prestressed concrete.[citation needed]
Born in Fuzhou, China as the fourth of eleven children, he was raised in [ where his father was a justice of the ROC's Supreme Court. He did not begin formal schooling until age 11, and only so because his parents forged his birth year to be 1911 so that he would qualify. At only 14, entered Jiaotong University's Tangshan Engineering College (now Southwest Jiaotong University), having earned the top score in math and the second best score overall in the college entrance exams for his entering class. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in civil engineering in 1931 and left for the United States, where he earned his master's degree in civil engineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 1933. Lin's master's thesis was the first student thesis published by the American Society of Civil Engineers.
Lin returned to China after graduation to work with the Chinese Ministry of Railways. Before too long he earned the reputation of being a “good engineer”. This positioned him to become the chief bridge engineer of the Yunnan-Chongqing Railway and oversaw the design and construction of more than 1,000 bridges. He returned to UC Berkeley to join its faculty in 1946, and began to research and develop the practice of prestressed concrete. He did not invent prestressed concrete, but he did develop it for practical use. The inventor of prestressed concrete is Eugene Freyssinet of France. Lin retired in 1976 to work full time at T.Y. Lin International, a firm he founded in 1954. After selling that firm, he left it in 1992 to found Lin Tung-Yen China, which oversees engineering projects in China.
When Lin received the National Medal of Science from President Ronald Reagan in 1986, he handed over a 16-page plan for a 50-mile (80 km) bridge linking Alaska and Siberia across the Bering Strait, a project he dubbed the Intercontinental Peace Bridge. He also proposed a bridge across the Strait of Gibraltar that would have 16,000-foot (4,900 m) spans and 3,000 feet (910 m) tall towers. Lin was also the first recipient of the A.S.C.E. lifetime achievement in design award, and the society renamed the prestressed concrete award to the T.Y. Lin award.
Engineers were often architects in the early 1900s, but by the late '40's, this aspect of engineering had been all but forgotten. Lin was saddended by this situation commenting:
But during the last century, particularly in America, we rushed our construction. We have only so much budget to build so many bridges. So we put emphasis on economy. And therefore mass production, et cetera. And almost forgot about aesthetics, in America. Of course, there are beautiful bridges, but in general, engineers didn't think about beauty.
Lin fought against the pressures of economy by incorporating more aesthetics into his bridges and developing new techniques that increased economy. Lin believed that "engineering approach should be a global vision of the bridge. To fit the environment and to express the structural forces and moments, and nature itself." Attention had to be paid not only to the details of the bridge, but also to the surrounding landscape. Prestressing the concrete allowed Lin to accomplish the goal of incorporating unique shapes without sacrificing the bottom line.
Among his engineering accomplishments were the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, the Kuan Du Bridge in Taiwan, and the roof of the National Racetrack in Caracas, Venezuela.
He died of a heart attack at age 91. His El Cerrito, California home is the world's first residential structure made of prestressed concrete. His home features a 1,000-square-foot (93 m2) dance floor serving as monument to his favorite pastime, dancing. His widow, Margaret Kao Lin is also the daughter of a former ROC supreme court justice.
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Dear Civilean,
Some impresive engineers from Poland:
Modjeski (Modrzewski) Ralph (Rudolf) 1861 - 1940 Engineer - "America's greatest bridge builder": Thebes Bridge, IL, 1904, Benjamin Franklin Bridge, NJ, 1926 (greatest achievement), Tacony-Palmyra Bridge, PA, 1929, Trans-Bay Bridge, CA, 1936, Blue Water Bridge, MI-ONT, 1938

Malinowski Ernest 1815- 1899 Railroad and transportation engineer - designed and managed the construction of the railroad line Callao-Oroya in Peru, reaching elevation 4769 m a.s.l.

Huber Maksymilian Tytus 1872- 1950 Mechanical engineer - developed hypothesis of endurance materials fundamental to strength of materials, so called Huber hypothesis

Gzowski Kazimierz 1813-1898 Construction engineer - he organized a company that build Grand Trunk Railway from Toronto to Sarnia 1853-57, and an international bridge across the Niagara River at Fort Erie in 1873; founder of Canadian Society of Civil Engineers in 1887

Bryla Stefan 1886-1943 Construction engineer, welding pioneer - the designer of, among others, the first in Europe welded road bridge on the Sludwia River (1927) and high rise building Prudential in Warszawa (1932) and some high rise buildings in USA
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Dear All,

For your kind information, I would like to let you know that Fazlur Rahman Khan (widely known as F. R. Khan) is a Bangladeshi (my countrymen). Bangladesh is located in south asian region. We, all Bangladeshis, proud of him, a great structural engineer ever, who showed his excellency in many ways in the field of structural engineering (sepcially tall building structures).

"Downstream is Weaker"
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