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Henri Coanda

Henri Marie Coanda (June 7, 1886 - November 25, 1972) was a Romanian inventor, aerodynamics pioneer and the parent of the modern jet aircraft.

Henri Marie Coanda

Born in Bucharest, Coanda initially embarked on a military career on the Bucharest Military School[?] where he graduated as an artillery officer, but he was more interested in the technical problems of the flight, he built a missile-airplane for the Romanian Army[?] in Bucharest. Then he decide pursuing engineering and aeronautical studies at Technische Universitšt Berlin and Superior Aeronautical School in Paris where he graduated in 1909.

He began experimenting the aerodynamic techniques: one of this experiments was mounting a device on a train running at 90 km/h so he could analyse the aerodynamic phenomena. Another one consisted in using an Wind tunnel with smoke and an aerodynamical balance to create the profile of the wings that were later used in designing aircrafts. This lead to the discovery of the well known aerodynamic effect now called the Coanda Effect.

In 1910 he designed, build and piloted the first jet engine propelled aircraft (simply called the Coanda-1910). This application of jet power was some thirty years ahead of its time.

Between 1911-1914 he worked as technical director of Bristol Aeroplane Company in UK, where he designed several airplanes known as Bristol-Coanda airplanes. In 1912 one of these planes won the first prize at the International Military Aviation Contest[?] in UK.

In 1935, based on his Coanda Effect, he designed a Hovercraft very similar in shape to the today's Flying saucers (called Aerodina Lenticulara[?]) that was later developed by Avro Canada before being bought by USAF and become a classified project.

In 1970, he returned for his last days to native Romania.


"These airplanes we have today are no more than a perfection of a toy made of paper children use to play with. My opinion is we should search for a completely different flying machine, based on other flying principles. I consider the aircraft of the future, that which will take off vertically, fly as usual and land vertically. This flying machine should have no parts in movement. The idea came from the huge power of the cyclones."

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