Traian Vuia (aviation pioneer)

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Traian Vuia
Traian Vuias flying machine (March 18, 1906)

Traian Vuia (born August 17, 1872 in Surducu Mic , Austria-Hungary (today Timiș County , Romania ); † September 3, 1950 in Bucharest ) was a Romanian aviation pioneer .


Vuia was born in the village Surducu Mic, which was then the community Bujoru belonged , today Traian Vuia , Timiş County . After graduating from Lugoj high school in 1892, he attended the Polytechnic in Budapest . First he attended evening classes at the School of Mechanics for a year, then he enrolled in law school. In May 1901 he passed his doctoral thesis Military and Industry, Status and Contractus.

Aviation pioneer

After completing his doctorate, he returned to Lugoj and worked with aircraft . In July 1902 he visited Victor Tatin in Paris , who was already building a model airplane in 1879. Tatin doubted the stability of his project and a sufficient engine. Vuia was not discouraged despite a rejection by the French Academy of Sciences and applied for a patent for a flying automobile on August 17, 1903, which was published on October 16, 1903. Vuia began construction in the winter of 1902 and in the fall of 1904 built an aircraft engine, which was patented in Great Britain that same year . Tatin designed a propeller for him in 1905.

Airplane Vuia 1

Postcard of Vuia and his plane

He named his single-seater shoulder - decker , built in December 1905 , Traian Vuia 1 . Vuia found a place in Montesson , near Paris , where he could test his flying machine. Initially, the device, without wings, was tested as a land vehicle. The first flight took place on March 18, 1906 , during which the machine took off after a take-off run of 50 m and flew around 12 m at a height of 1 m. Then the engine stopped and the plane landed. Many magazines in France, the USA and England wrote about this short flight. This was the first free flight of a flying machine with a pulling propeller.

More aircraft and inventions

In 1907 he built his Vuia II with a 25 HP (19 kW) Antoinette engine . The Antoinette engines and later the Antoinette aircraft were built by Léon Levavasseur , who was for a time Alberto Santos Dumont's fitter . The Vuia II was exhibited at the Aeronautical Salon in Paris.

Between 1918 and 1921 he built experimental helicopters in the Juvissy and Issy-les-Moulineaux aerodromes. Another great invention was the development of a steam generator that could produce steam pressures in excess of 100 atm (10 MPa). These generators are still used in some power plants today.

On May 27, 1946 he was made an honorary member of the Romanian Academy. Today Timisoara Airport (TSR) bears his name. It is the second largest airport in Romania.


Bernard Orner: Modest Experimenter - Vuias Powered Flights: the Successes of a Little-known Pioneer . In: Flight . tape 69 , no. 2462 , March 30, 1956, p. 365-366 ( available online ).

Web links

Commons : Traian Vuia (aviation pioneer)  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. TRAIAN VUIA - in a Century of Aviation : Information on Traian Vuia on the website of the Biblioteca Academiei Române (English, accessed on March 15, 2011)