Alberto Santos Dumont

Alberto Santos Dumont

Alberto Santos Dumont (* 20. July 1873 in Cabangu/Federal State Minas Gerais; † 23. July 1932 in Guarujá /Bundesstaat São Paulo) was a Brazilian air boat operator and powered flight pioneer, that the beginning of motorized aviation, particularly in its work country France with coined/shaped. It accomplished first public powered flight with an airplane after several travels with different built airships 1906 also in the world.

Frequently Santos Dumont is called “father of aviation”.

Table of contents


Alberto Santos Dumont was the youngest of three sonsthe Brazilian owner of coffee plan day Henriques Dumont, the grandchild of a French immigrant. Already as a child it was interested in mechanics and was allowed to work with the mechanic of the Kaffeeplantage on the coffee processing machines and the narrow trace railway. In addition it observed gladly the tropical birds. Santos Dumont devoured already with 10 yearsthe adventure novels of Jules Verne, particularly those, in which Luftreisen are described. 1891 it accompanied its family on a six month's journey at the age of 18 years to Paris. It surprised its family with a car, which it had bought from its “pocket money”, whichit for attendance in the Moulin Rouge and other Etablissements had received. It had been built by a certain “ Monsieur Peugeot “. Santos Dumont carried the car forward back to Brazil, probably was it one of the first automobiles in South America at all.

In the year 1892 the father recognized,the fact that none of its sons would take over the Plantage and sold the business, in order to only dedicate itself to its family. With a ride it fell from the horse and was since then. In addition it wanted to promote the abilities of its son Alberto and sent it in thisSummers, with considerable financial equipment provide, to Paris back, where it studies chemistry , physics , astronomy and mechanics. After it had lived some time with its French relationship, it created its own household at the corner Rue Washington and Champs Elyseés.

Balloon travels

someYears later, 1897/98 Santons Dumont its homeland Brazil visited. For the journey he bought a book, which straight appeared new, in order to read it on the way. It concerned a description of the Swedish Andrée expedition, which had without trace disappeared 1897 on their way to the north pole.The book was of Andrées balloon - manufacturers, Henri Lachambre and his nephew Alexis Machuron written.

On the way back to Paris it left the course of Lisbon in refines d'Orléans and visited the balloon factory of Lachambre in Paris urban district the Vaugirard. Already on the next dayit accomplished there its first balloon travel together with Machuron. It began around 11:00 clock and cost it at that time 250 to francs at material expenditures. The balloon had a diameter of 12 meters and a volume of 740 cubic meters.

On the following day he ordered a balloon foritself. Lachambre recommended to it a standard size with 750 to 1000 cubic meters of size. Santos Dumont insisted however on an in person balloon. As small slim humans Santos Dumont demanded a volume of approximately 100 cubic meters. It insisted also on the fact that only specially-easy materials were processed. During it on the supplyundertook it did not wait less than 25 ascents, in order to collect exercise and experience.

In on it following the year, to 4. July 1898 flew Santos Dumont the hydrogen balloon “Brasil” in the Jardin d'Acclimatation. It ascended with this balloon more than 200 times. The balloon had a diameterof 6 meters and a volume of 113 m ³. It needed 113 m ² Japanese silk for its covering and the covering was 3.5 kg heavily. The varnish weighed 10.5 kg, the instruments 4.7 kg, the iron anchor 3.0 kg and the remaining accessories 13.8 kg. Thushe came on a weight of 35,5 kg. In addition still 30.0 kg of loads and 50.0 kg weight of the pilot were added. Later it had the idea to cultivate 1.75 HP a strong De-Dion-engine to the balloon whose achievement turned out however as too small.

Development ofAirships

No. 9 „La Baladeuse“
No. 9 „La Baladeuse “

Santos Dumont in each case an airship for the support of a helicopter flight and a powered flight built to 19 in the years 1898 to 1906 altogether eleven airships as well as. July 1906. With its first airship Santos Dumont rose to 20. September 1898 for the first timeup.

With the airship „Santos Dumont No. 6 “it had its largest success. To 19. October 1901 it won thereby the German price, for the first successful round flight of an airship from Paris suburb the Saint Cloud to the Eiffelturm over 5,5 km in 30 minutes. The 100,000 francsPrize money it donated to the workers and beggars of Paris.

To 26. June 1903 drove the first time its airship No. to Santos Dumont. 9 „La Baladeuse “. It used it frequently for trip travels. Thus it landed more frequently in the middle on the road, tied up the airship at a treeand visited a cafe or friends. At night it visited so the Maxim.

Beside Santos Dumont sketched also screwing and hanging glider. It used the first seat belts during its flights and with an attendance with Theodore Roosevelt described it the function of an airport for the first time.

Flier clock

thereSantos Dumont during its airship travels determined that reading off of a watch was difficult during steering the airship, developed it 1904 together with its friend Louis François Cartier the thought for wrist-watch suitable for aviation purposes. Cartier made this wrist-watch for Santos Dumont and created in such a way onethe first flier clocks of the world, which was designated after Santos Dumont “model Santos”.

Building of airplanes

in the winter from 1905 to 1906 turned to Santos Dumont the Fliegerei with aircraft according to the principle “more heavily than air”. He pursued among other things the idea of the helicopter, could it however do not carry out.

When end showed 1905 Gabriel Voisin Santos Dumont flight notes of Samuel Langley, it turned also to the building of rigid wing airplanes.


with its airplane 14-bis succeeded it to it to 23. October 1906, in the presence of the commission of the aero club of France oneto accomplish successful steered powered flight and to win so the prize money from 3.500 francs, suspended of the aero club for first powered flight with a self-startingable airplane of more than 25 meters of width, to. To 12. November flew Santos Dumont with the same airplane 220 meters far and won in such a wayof the chairman of the aero club of France, Ernest Archdeacon with 1.500 francs endowed price for the first powered flight of over 100 meters of width. The airplane construction was based on experiences which one one with box kites had made.

With these flights Alberto Santos Dumont applied at this time asfirst successful engine flier of the world.


its 1907 to 1909 built Eindecker (5 meters of span) were forerunners of the light airplane. In the September of the yearly 1909 and flew Alberto Santos Dumont sketched the Demoiselle, the first lightweight construction Sportflugzeut of the world. It flew in the same month a speed record of55,8 mph (18 km in 16 minutes). The flight model was copied several times in the USA and in Europe.

In the year 1910

it got sick to end of the aviation activities suddenly and terminated its activity as airplane technical designer and a pilot. That it concerned with the illness multiple Sklerose,however only after his death one determined. It pulled to the Mediterranean coast and concerned themselves with astronomy. By its accent and the many telescopes he in suspicion, a German feeler gauge turned out to be, the ship movements of the French navy observed. As for this reason itsHouse was scanned, burned it its all recordings and documents. Therefore today only few are received over its constructions

as it at the 3. December 1928 on board the Cap Arcona always to Brazil returned happened a tragic misfortune. 12 Brazilian scientists on boarda Flugbootes wanted to be called it welcome in close proximity to Rio de Janeiro. The Flugboot fell in the proximity of the Cap Arcona. There were no survivors.

To multiple Sklerose suffering and of depressions troubled, released by the military use of the airplanes in the First World War, for which it felt jointly responsible, it took itself finally to 23. July 1932, 3 days after its 59. Birthday in Guarujá the life. After it some bombers the way to their goals in military conflicts of this time over the beaches of Guarujáhad observed erhängte himself he in his bathroom. In consideration of its earnings/services, in press notes to its death heart problems were indicated as cause of death. He was buried on the Cemitério São João Batista in Rio de Janeiro.


  • 1932 threw Hugo Eckener of LZ 127 „to countZeppelin “ out a wreath/ring over the place of birth from Santos Dumont. The airship made for it on its first South America travel specially a small excursion.
  • At the 13.Oktober 1997 president Bill Clinton in its speech Alberto Santos Dumont honoured, the “father of aviation”.
  • To 18. January 2002 entered SkyShip 600 to its young remote travel up, which carries the name in in honours of the aviation pioneer „Santos Dumont “.

Aircraft of Santos Dumont

of airships

airship No. 1
  • „the airship No. 1 “of Santos Dumont was propelled by a propeller (pusher propeller) and possessed already a ballonet, with the ascent of the airshipair should be blown into the covering around it to keep stout and gas losses adjust, however the used pump was too weak. To 18. September 1898 failed the attempt and the float by gusts of wind into the trees was pressed and damaged. With the second attempt to20. September 1898 of the Jardin d'Acclimatation, a botanischen garden to the west of Paris, put Santos Dumont down after a successful travel in up to 400 m height a crash landing, since the carrying gas body collapsed by the gas loss. The airship was 25 meters long with a maximum diameterof 3,5 m and a gas volume of 180 m ³. With 3.5 HP were propelled a strong De-Dion-Dreiradmotor, which weighed only 33 kg. The propeller was 2 meters long and the gas for balloon contents cost to Santos Dumont at that time 6,560 francs.
  • „The airship No. 2 “, thatwas very similar first, should by a pusher propeller be likewise propelled, collapsed however at the 11. May 1899 before the first ascent and was pressed by the wind into some trees. It was likewise 25 meters long, had however a somewhat increased gas volume of 195 m ³and with 3.5 HP a strong engine one propelled.
  • With „the airship No. “Santos Dumont led 3 to 13. November 1899 a 20-minütige travel through and umfuhr thereby for the first time the Eiffelturm. It made a dozen of travels with its airship and placed with 23 hours in thatAir a record up. It was 20 meters long with a diameter of 7,6 m and a gas volume of 495 m ³. The drive took place via 3.5 HP a strong engine with pusher propeller. A speed of approximately 19 km/h could be achieved. By 10 metersthe ship the necessary rigidity received high bamboo bars.
  • „The airship No. 4 “of Santos Dumont one propelled contrary to the predecessors by a propeller, which was implemented as tractor propellers. The pilot sat unprotected on a bicycle seat. To 19. September 1900 came Alberto Santos Dumont intoa storm before it “internationally the Aeronautical Congress” with his airship visit could. The airship was 30 meters long with a diameter of 5,1 m and a gas volume of 420 m ³. By 7 HP were propelled a strong engine.
  • The rebuilt „airship No. 4“with a length of 32.70 meters was unstable and one did not test.
  • „The airship No. 5 “one propelled by a tractor propeller, was supported by 60 foot (approx. 18.29 meters) are enough for keel Kiel equipped with Pianodraht and with a flight compartment twisted from basket. The airship was Long, a gas volume of 550 m had 35.70 meters ³ and with 12 HP a strong engine was propelled. To 13. July 1901 landed Alberto Santos Dumont with this airship roughly in three Kastanienbäumen on the area of the Rothschilds. To 8. It collided to August 1901with its second attempt the German price to win with the Trocadéro hotel. Santos Dumont was saved by the fire-brigade of a window sill of the hotel, on which he had saved himself.
No. the German price the first
  • travel with „airship No. wins 6. 6 “ended to 6. September1901 again in the trees of the garden of baron Edmont de Rothschild. One month later umfuhr Santos Dumont to 19. October 1901 the Eiffelturm in Paris and won the German price. To 13. It drove the bay to February 1902 from Monaco along, the travel ended howeverwith a splash-down in the bay of Monaco, after the covering was collapsed. To 27. It drove May 1902 into London and in July 1902 into New York. The vehicle was propelled by a pusher propeller. 12 HP strong carburetor engine was water-cooled and with one Ölschmiersytem for the work with inclinations provide. The airship was 32.70 meters long and had a gas volume of 630 m ³.
  • „The airship No. 7 “„Racer “1902 were built and still during the world exhibition in pc. Louis (the USA) 1904 shown. It was propelled by two propellers,one at the front and one at the back of the engine. It was 39.70 meters long with a diameter of 7 meters and a gas volume of 1.280 m ³. The drive takes place via 45 HP a strong engine.
  • „Airship No. “Santos Dumont from superstitious built 8Reasons not.
  • „The airship No. 9 “„La Baladeuse “(dt.: „the Wandererin “) was 40 meters long, had a gas volume of 215 m ³ and had an appearance like a fat cigar. It with a 3 HP strong Clément engine propelled at a maximum speed of 24 km/h(15 mph). To 26. June 1903 took place the young remote travel. Likewise on this day Santos Dumont carried forward a child during a further flight for the first time. A few days later still in June 1903 the first female pilot flew alone with an airship at all. Around the successfulBuilding „of the La Baladeuse “to celebrate, organized Santos Dumont a Luftdinner at the Elysée Palace hotel, typical for it. „The La Baladeuse “could land and start everywhere. Thus it landed for example at the Arc de Triumph, in the Avenue Champs Èlysées or in the Rue Washington.It tied up its airship at a tree or at an appropriate device, similarly as the cowboys their horses in the wild west had still tied up, and visited a cafe or friends. In this time were Cartier and princess Isabel Bewunderer of Santos Dumont and ofits „La Baladeuse “.
  • With „the airship No. 10 “(1904) „bus “could along-fly 10 persons. The airship was 47.60 meters long with a diameter of 8,50 m and a gas volume of 2.230 m ³. It underwent only of few tests and never became with 10Persons working at full capacity.
  • No. 11 and 12 was a glider and a helicopter (see paragraphs further below)
  • „airship No. 13 “(1905) one built for support by flights with a helicopter. It was propelled combined with a hydrogen balloon and by a hot-air generator.
  • „Airship No.14 “(1905) was built, in order to pull the power plane into air. With 14 HP were propelled a strong engine. The first flight found to 19. July 1906 instead of.
  • „Airship No. 16 “(1907) was a crossing between airplane and airship. The trunkwith additional bearing areas had been provided, the oblong float present over it had a volume of 190 m ³. The vehicle was destroyed still before the first start at the soil.


the unmanned mono plan glider „No. “Alberto Santos Dumont built 11 in the year 1905. It became with one Speedboat dragged, in order to achieve the speed necessary for taking from the water surface off. Unfortunately the glider hardly came from the water. The work was nevertheless useful for Santos Dumont. It could use the results later with its helicopter - project.


the helicopter with twoRotors „No. “Alberto Santos Dumont built 12 1905. It started several attempts in the years 1905 and 1906. The helicopter main header never off, also not with the assistance of its „airship No. 13 “, there the engine unsuitable was and Santos Dumont also no other suitable engine to thisTime to find could.

Power planes

the airship No. „14-bis “Alberto Santos Dumont flew

14 with the airplane fastened to it 14-bis the power plane for the first time to 19. July 1906 together with its „airship No. 14 “as support. To 23. August 1906 it repeated this combined flight. „The 14-bis “a span of 10 had meters and a length of 12.20 meters. Them were 290 kg heavily and with 50 HP a strong engine were propelled. It achieved a maximum speed of 41,7 km/h.

Without the assistance „of the airship No. “Alberto Santos Dumont that flew 14Power plane „14-bis “for the first time to 13. September 1906 eleven meters far. To 23. It flew and wins October 1906 with „the 14-bis “fifty meters far the Archdeacon price with a doping of 3.500 francs for first powered flight over 25 meters. „The Bird OF Prey “and/or. those„Classico certificamente “for the first powered flight of the world over 100 meters in the world press was celebrated. To 12. November 1906 it flew 220 meters far to scarcely 21.2 seconds (41.292 km/h) and wins again the Archdeacon price with a doping of 1.500 francs. The press celebratedat that time Alberto Santos Dumont as the first engine flier of the world. To 12. November 1906 showed Alberto Santos Dumont its flights in Bagetelle with Paris, where since 1910 in honours the monument was established to it with the label: “Here, 12. November 1906, under control aero clubde France, demonstrated Santos Dumont the first record powered flight of the world, duration: 21.2 seconds, distance of 220 meters. “

The power plane „No. 15 “ 1907 were built and could not not confirm successes of its predecessor. To 27. March 1907 collapsed the power plane before it take off could. When startingthe aircraft lost the balance.

The wing airship „No. 16 “, a crossing between airship and power plane, fell apart with the first flight test when affecting the soil in July 1907.

The power plane „No. 17 “(1907) one began, but never one placed finished.

The water airplane „No. 18 “became inYear 1907 built. Santos Dumont started several attempts, it succeeded it however not from the water (the river its) to take off. He decided to dedicate itself to a safe and smaller variant from power planes to. It is the beginning of the easy and sport power plane.

Further developments

Santos Dumont No. 19

the light airplane No. 19 and had a span of 5.50 meters was 7.90 meters long. The airplane made of bamboo was propelled by 13 KW (18 HP) strong Dulthiel Chalmers engine. The engine was drying only 24.5 kg heavily and was over thatHead of the pilot. Alberto Santos Dumont expected with its light airplane No. d´Aviation (1 km flight ) from Henry German and Ernest Archdeacon to conquer, failed to 19 the Grand Prix however. To 21. It flew November 1907 with its No. 19,122 meters far. The priceHenri Farman finally won to 13. January 1908.

The sport power plane No. 20, the Demoiselle (dt.: Ms), became one the most successful and usually-built power plane of its time. Santos Dumont built its Demoiselle in the year 1909. There are still the further developed versions No. 21 and No.22. They were led however all under the name Demoiselle. It wurdem of a water-cooled Dulthiel Chalmers double-piston engine with a wood propeller propelled, which 18 KW (25 HP) at 1100 min-1 carried out. The airplane was 7.90 meters long and had a span of 5.50 meters. Santos Dumontpushed from some sides the machine to patent, it refused however. He said, a gift for humans and it were in the poorhouse would rather end to raise than royalties for copying its invention. In September 1909 Santos Dumont with a pilot lot model placeda speed record with 88,35 km/h up, which was officially not recognized however. In the Automanufaktur Clement Bayard in France the machines in a kind series were built. In Europe 7500 francs cost the machines with engine. The inventor Tom Hamilton built it for Hamilton aero Manufacturing inand it sold Chicago company to the USA without engine for 250 $, offered it completely for 1.000 $. The last flight of Alberto Santos Dumont ended to 4. January 1910 with an accident of its Demoiselle, about which it never talked. In June and July 1911 it became in the magazine popular mechanic for the development of the NR 20. un No. 21 appreciative.

Historical data

  • 13. November 1899 first 20 minute flight with its „airship Nr.3 “and first Umfahren of the Eiffelturms. Ita dozen made travels and set up with 23 hours in air a record with its airship.
  • 23. October 1906 first certified powered flight alsoits „14-bis “with fifty meters of width and wins the Archdeacon price for first powered flight over 25 meters.
  • 12. November 1906 first certified powered flight with its „14-bis “with 220 meters of width and wins the Archdeacon price for first powered flight over 100 meters.
  • September 1909, those„Demoiselle “, first sport power plane.

Alberto Santos Dumont flew its first guidable airship 1899, accomplished it first authenticated and public powered flight 1906 , and flew the first sport power plane 1909. Besides it had at least the idea of the airport 1902 and the use of a seat beltits flights.

See also

Commons: Category: Santos Dumont - powered flight authenticated pictures, videos


audio files literature its balloon travels and first:

| | * Literature of and over Alberto Santos Dumont in the catalog of the DDB


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