1890-1965prof. WITOLD WIERZBICKI


He graduated from the Faculty of Metallurgy at Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University in 1917. After returning to Poland, he started working in secondary education, and then as a teaching assistant at the Faculty of Metal Science at the Warsaw University of Technology. In 1928, he received his doctorate; in 1930, the degree of venia legendi, (corresponding to the contemporary Polish habilitation degree – a post-doctoral academic degree) and was appointed associate professor, and then, in 1939, professor. Also in 1930, he was appointed professor at the AGH University of Science and Technology and in 1934, member of the Academy of Technical Sciences. During the Second World War, together with other professors from Kraków’s universities, he was deported to Sachsenhausen concentration camp, and returned in 1940. Following the establishment of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAN) in 1952, he also became its member. He was appointed Head of the Metals Department of PAN, founded upon his initiative and based in Cracow, and since 1953, operated as part of the Institute of Fundamental Technological Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences (IPPT PAN). In 1969, the department started operating as an independent research centre of the PAN and, subsequently, was given the name of A. Krupkowski Institute of Metallurgy and Metal Engineering of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Aleksander Krupkowski’s high versatility allowed for developing his interests in a vast area of metal science: thermodynamics of basic metal production and refining processes; the kinetics of oxidation and reduction reactions in oxides; metal rectification: phase transitions in alloys, plastic deformation processes, and mechanical properties. He succeeded in achieving outstanding results in all these areas of interest.

The author of about 300 papers published in Poland and abroad, including two very significant monographs: Zasady termodynamiki i ich zastosowanie w metalurigii i metaloznawstwie (Principles of thermodynamics and their application in metallurgy and metal science, 1958) and Podstawowe zagadnienia teorii procesów metalurgicznych (Basic issues of the theory of metallurgic processes, 1974). Despite his lack of commitment in the political life of the communist PRL (which to many guaranteed career successes), he was awarded highest state prizes for his contribution to science – he was a three-time laureate of the First Class State Award and was conferred the degree of honorary doctor (doctor honoris causa), at the Freiberg University of Mining and Technology.


Radio and electronics engineer. One of the first graduates of the Warsaw University of Technology (WUT) in 1919 and the Military Academy for communications officers in Paris (1922). As such, he was a lecturer on radio engineering in military schools.

In 1928 he received a doctorate degree for his thesis on radio wave stability compensation method (Metoda kompensacyjna kontroli stałości fali) and was appointed Chair of Radio Engineering at the WUT Faculty of Electrical Engineering. In 1929 he was appointed associate professor and subsequently, professor in 1935.

In 1928 he initiated the establishment of the first radio engineering institute in the country (later Institute of Telecommunications), which he directed since 1934. During occupation years, he was the underground lecturer at University. Simultaneously to his educational career, he was a soldier of the Polish Home Army, in which he managed to decipher missile navigating systems of V-2 rockets. In 1945 he founded the WUT Faculty of Electrical Engineering (later Faculty of Communications), where he chaired the Radiolocation Institute until retirement in 1968. He organized the first Polish Academy of Sciences (PAN) research units: the Electronics Unit and The Institute of Fundamental Technological Research in Science (IPPT), to which the unit was later incorporated. In 1961-1963 he was appointed Director of IPPT PAN.

Janusz Groszkowiski was an outstanding expert in high vacuum measurement. He gained international recognition for his work on ionizing heads for low-pressure measurement. Author of 16 patents and 361 scientific papers, also books (Techinika wysokiej próżni, 1972). Supervisor of 33 dissertations.

Since 1936, he was a member of Akademia Nauk Technicznych (Academy of Technical Sciences), since 1949 – Towarzystwo Naukowe Warszawskie (Warsaw Scientific Society), since 1952 he was a member of the PAN, since 1957 – its vice-president, and then in 1962-1971 its president. He resigned from being a member of the Sejm (lower house of the Polish Parliament) of the PRL - People’s Republic of Poland, and vice-president of Rada Państwa (the State Council), as an act of protest against progressing political repression in 1976. Member of 6 foreign academies of sciences (Czechoslovakia, Hungary, the Soviet Union, Romani, Bulgaria and Cuba) and honorary member of many associations. Laureate of the First Class State Award (1951, 1955, 1968, 1979). He was conferred the degree of honorary doctor (doctor honoris causa), at: Warsaw, Gdansk, and Łódź Universities of Technology. Holder of state awards: the Gold Cross of the Virtuti Militari War Order, Commander's Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta (twice), Officer's Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta.

The Military Communication Institute credited professor Groszkowski’s scientific achievements, giving the Institute his name.

1900-1975prof. JULIAN BONDER

Aviation Engineer, graduate (1929) and researcher at the Warsaw University of Technology (1939-1945). His research in analytical mapping and the use of conformal mapping resulted in receiving a doctorate in 1931 and habilitation in 1934. Corresponding member (1954) and then member (1966) of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Since 1946, professor at the Silesian University of Technology, where responsible for the initiation of technical studies. Since 1952, professor at the Department of Aerodynamics at WUT, and since 1955, at the Department of Aerohydrodynamics of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics at the University of Warsaw. Organizer and Head of the Department of the Mechanics of Fluids and Gases at IPPT PAN (1953-1961). Initiator of the first scientific conferences devoted to the issues and methods in liquid mechanics, later transformed into international biennial symposia. Author of 50 scientific papers, most of which were devoted to the methods of analyzing aerodynamic fields in spatial, non-stationary compressible flows. Author of the unified theory of simple and double waves in gas dynamics and mathematical bases for the description of inviscid compressible flows.

1902-1980prof. WACŁAW OLSZAK

Graduate of the Vienna University of Technology in Civil and Water Engineering (1925). He furthered his studies at the Faculte des Sciences at Paris University (1926-1927). Doctorates: 1933, at the Vienna University of Technology – a dissertation on reinforced concrete structures, in 1934, at the Warsaw University of Technology – a dissertation on the theory of plasticity (under the supervision of M.T. Hubert). Habilitated in 1937 at the AGH University of Science and Technology on statics and dynamics of anti-aircraft structures. In 1946, he became associate professor, and head of the Department of Strength of Materials at the AGH University of Science and Technology in Cracow. He organized research in the field of prestressed structures and applied mechanics at two universities – the AGH and the newly-established Cracow University of Technology. In 1952, he started his cooperation with the Warsaw University of Technology and the then-establishing Polish Academy of Sciences and created the first Department of Theory of Elasticity and Plasticity and the Department of the Mechanics of Continuous Media, thus creating solid foundations for the IPPT, which he directed until 1970.

In 1954, he became a corresponding member, and in 1956, a member of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Director of IPPT (1963-1970), Secretary to the 4th Department of the Polish Academy of Sciences (1957-1960), member of the PAN Presidium, co-organizer and rector of the International Centre for the Mechanical Sciences in Udine (CISM) (1970-1980). Creator of the world-famous Polish school of theory of elasticity. His scientific research included: theory of elasticity; theory of prestressed structures; rheology.

Author of 290 scientific papers, 10 monographs, editor of 6. Co-founder and member of the board of the RILEM and IASS, IUTAM and IABSE. Co-founder of the Archiwum Mechaniki Stosowanej (Archives of Applied Mechanics) and Rozprawy Inżynierskie (Engineering Theses), 1949. Member of editorial committees of many magazines, organizer of international meetings. He initiated the Polish Conference of Solid Mechanics. Great international authority, propagator of the achievements of Polish mechanics abroad. Supervisor of 16 doctoral students. Honorary doctor (doctor honoris causa) of 9 domestic and foreign universities. Member of 17 foreign academies of sciences. Winner of many state and international awards, a two-time winner of the Polish State Award.

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