|Nikolay Yegorovich Zhukovsky|
January 17, 1847|
Orekhovo, Vladimir Oblast, Russian Empire
March 17, 1921 (aged 74)|
|Alma mater||Moscow State University|
Founder of Aerodynamics
Order of Saint Anna|
Order of Saint Stanislaus
Order of Saint Vladimir
Imperial Moscow University|
Bauman Moscow State Technical University
Moscow State University
|Academic advisors||August Davidov|
Leonid I. Sedov
Nikolay Yegorovich Zhukovsky (Russian: ?, IPA: ['kofskj]; January 17 [O.S. January 5] 1847 - March 17, 1921) was a Russian scientist, mathematician and engineer, and a founding father of modern aero- and hydrodynamics. Whereas contemporary scientists scoffed at the idea of human flight, Zhukovsky was the first to undertake the study of airflow. He is often called the Father of Russian Aviation.
Zhukovsky was born in the village of Orekhovo, Vladimir Governorate, Russian Empire. In 1868, he graduated from Moscow University where he studied under August Davidov. From 1872, he was a professor at the Imperial Technical School. In 1904, he established the world's first Aerodynamic Institute in Kachino near Moscow. He was influenced by both Ernst Mach and his son Ludwig Mach. From 1918, he was the head of TsAGI (Central AeroHydroDynamics Institute).
He was the first scientist to explain mathematically the origin of aerodynamic lift, through his circulation hypothesis, the first to establish that the lift force generated by a body moving through an ideal fluid is proportional to the velocity and the circulation around the body. He used a conformal mathematical transformation to define the ideal shape of the aerodynamic profile having as essential elements a rounded nose (leading edge), double surface (finite thickness), cambered or symmetrical, and a sharp tail (trailing edge). He built the first wind tunnel in Russia. He was also responsible for the eponymous water hammer equation used by civil engineers and the Joukowsky transform.
He published a derivation for the maximum energy obtainable from a turbine in 1920, at the same time as German scientist Albert Betz. This is known controversially as Betz's law, as this result was also derived by British scientist Frederick W. Lanchester. This is a famous example of Stigler's law of eponymy.
He died in Moscow in 1921.
The State Zhukovsky Prize was established in 1920 'for the best works in mathematics'.
The Russian Central Aero-Hydrodynamic Institute and the Ukrainian National Aerospace University - Kharkiv Aviation Institute are named after him.
The Zhukovsky House is a museum dedicated to his memory