Igor Sikorsky Essay

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Igor Sikorsky Abstract Igor Sikorsky was an aviation pioneer who developed and mass-produced the world’s first helicopter. He embarked on a journey to further educate himself and to establish a business to produce aircrafts. He faced many difficulties that a typical entrepreneur, defined by Schumpeter, would encounter. He had a rough start but he eventually made successful aircraft designs. Igor Sikorsky was last born, the youngest of five, into a privileged family on May 25, 1889. He was born in Kiev of the Russian Empire (Peck, 2013). His father was a successful psychologist who wrote over 100 books on child psychiatry. His mother was a non-practicing physician so she home schooled Sikorsky. At a very young age he took interest in Leonardo da Vinci’s life and works as well as Jules Verne novels. In Robur The Conqueror, Verne writes of an inventor creating many flying contraptions (Whitman, 1972). Da Vinci’s journal included many drawings of aircrafts including the well-known screw-like helicopter. Both inspired Sikorsky to invent, as he described, “A flying machine offering reasonable speed, [safety, and controllability] also combining take off and landing in a small area” (Whitman, 1972). With this in mind at age 11 he started experimenting with model aircrafts, one of them being a small rubber band power helicopter. The reason for wanting to invent such a machine is because believed that “the machine should be like a fly or an insect that could dart in any direction at an instant’s notice” (Whitman, 1972). To begin this amazing feat, at age 14, he enlisted into the St. Petersburg Imperial Russian Naval Academy. But in 1906, he decided his future lay in engineering so he resigned from the academy and went to study in Paris. He once again decided to change his career path to aviation and aeronautics in 1908. At the time Paris was the mecca of the

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