Lanchester, Frederick William

Lanchester, Frederick William
born Oct. 23, 1868, London, Eng.
died March 8, 1946, Birmingham, Warwickshire

British automobile and aeronautics pioneer.

Lanchester produced the first British automobile, a one-cylinder, five-horsepower model, in 1896. After he successfully produced improved models, financial backing enabled him to produce several hundred cars over the next few years, vehicles notable for a relative freedom from vibration, a graceful appearance, and a luggage rack. He published an important paper (1897) on the principles of heavier-than-air flight and later major texts on aeronautics.

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▪ British engineer
born Oct. 23, 1868, London, Eng.
died March 8, 1946, Birmingham, Warwickshire

      English automobile and aeronautics pioneer who built the first British automobile (1896).

      In 1891, after attending Hartley University College (now the University of Southampton) and the National School of Science, Lanchester went to work for a gas-engine works in Birmingham. During his employment at the firm he improved its products by designing a pendulum governor and a starter. After five years he left to set up his own automobile-manufacturing firm, producing his first car, a one-cylinder, five-horsepower model, in 1896. A second model, with two cylinders, and a third led to financial backing for the Lanchester Engine Company, which produced several hundred cars over the next few years. Among notable design features of his cars were a relative freedom from vibration, a graceful appearance with fewer of the knobs and levers that bristled in most driver's compartments, and a luggage rack.

      Lanchester's interest in aeronautics was first expressed in a paper he wrote in 1897, a work ahead of its time in appreciation of the principles of heavier-than-air flight. In 1907–08 he published a two-volume work embodying distinctly advanced aerodynamic ideas. As a member of the Advisory Committee on Aeronautics in 1909 and, later, as a consultant to the Daimler Motor Company, Ltd., he also contributed to the development of operations research.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • LANCHESTER — UNITED KINGDOM (see also List of Individuals) 23.10.1868 Lewisham/UK 8.3.1946 Birmingham/UK Frederick William Lanchester was educated at Hartley College, Southampton, and the National School of Science, South Kensington. He joined in 1889 the gas …   Hydraulicians in Europe 1800-2000

  • Frederick — /fred rik, euhr ik/, n. 1. a city in central Maryland. 27,557. 2. Also, Frederic. a male given name: from Germanic words meaning peace and ruler. * * * (as used in expressions) Ashton Sir Frederick William Mallandaine Frederick Austerlitz… …   Universalium

  • William — /wil yeuhm/, n. 1. a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter W. 2. a male given name: from Germanic words meaning will and helmet. * * * (as used in expressions) Huddie William Ledbetter Aberhart William George William… …   Universalium

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