Skip to comments.The 5 greatest engineers of all time
Posted on 09/14/2012 2:23:44 PM PDT by null and void
We recently asked, Who are the greatest engineers of all time? and you, the engineering community, commented with your thoughts.
In the more than 115 comments posted, you also offered some good debate on who did what and who deserves to be called one of the greatest engineers of all timeso good, in fact, that commenter Al.Sledge posted:
Reading the nominees was fantastic by itself. Thank you all. I often reflect on why I have such great vision and can see so far. It is because I sit atop the shoulders of the giants who preceded me.
Ponder a moment what engineering would be like without the invention of zero. Each great inventor is preceded by smaller discoveries of others plus a gift of vision.
I doubt that I will ever make a great earth-shattering contribution to engineering, but I have the satisfaction of building things that others want built. For myself, it is not about ego, but rather the great satisfaction I get from seeing my ideas become reality.
Well said, Al.Sledge. With that, we present a handful of giants: the five engineering greats most mentioned by EDNs engineering community. Read on. Who landed in the top five may surprise
No, I'm not listing them, it's worth reading the stories and reasoning for the picks.
I’m disappointed John Roebling didn’t make the list. He designed the Brooklyn Bridge.
The Beaver, MIT’s mascot.
I’m down with Kelly Johnson, for sure.
That would be a better choice than Leon Moisseiff...
The guy who invented beer should be on that list but then again, maybe he wasn’t an engineer.
Isambard Kingdom Brunel
Elmer Ambrose Sperry
Charles Algernon Parsons
The builders of the pyramids. With little technology other than rudimentary tools they built something that lasted centuries and still awe inspiring.
I agree. Kelly Johnson did everything from the P-38 Lightning to the SR-71, and IIRC, even had something of a consulting role in the F-117. You don’t stay cutting edge for half a century without being an absolute genius.
George Smith. Hands down.
Why Throttler Smith?
When Julius Caesar invaded Germany, his engineers built a wooden bridge across the Rhine in just a few days. It was capable of carrying infantry and vehicles.
When they recrossed headed back towards Rome, they destroyed it.
Did they put Tesla in there, or was he considered more inventor than engineer? Lots of overlap from my view.
Casey Jones has to be first.
I’m glad to see Tesla was at the top. He invented the basis for modern civilizaion to the extent it depends on AC power. If Edison would have had his way we would have been stuck with small local DC power plants. The Supreme Court finally ruled that Tesla, not Marconi invented the radio.
That would be telling...
I’d nominate Kettering, with a honorable mention for Smokey Yunick.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.