The Scientist Dumitru Brumarescu and The Unfortunate Destiny of His Inventions



A three-propeller airplane, a rescue booth for submarine personnel, a car-sled and automatic coupling device for railway wagons are just some of the inventions of Dumitru (Tache) Brumărescu

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Dumitru (Tache) Brumărescu was born in 1872 at Vălenii de Munte and died at the age of 65 in Bucharest . He is remembered as one of the most relevant people in aerodynamic field being noted as a prolific inventor,pilot,pioneer of world’s aviation.Spiru Haret and C. Istrati appreciated and encouraged his initiative,seeing more than just a person with potential in him.

Brumărescu was a visionary and in order to achieve his many goals  he began to carve in wood and sell his products.As a result of his passion for wood,Tache became in 1903 the founder of „the first romanian school for manufacturing mechanical wooden toys”. But this was just the beggining of his great career.

During his lifetime, Tache Brumărescu had around 150 inventions.In 1904, as well as in 1906, he takes part of the General Romanian Exhibitions,where he obtained silver and gold medals for one of his best inventions, an original aeroplane with vertical take off.Its originality was based on its three propellers,one which was propulsive, and the other two tractive.

After a short period of time,Brumărescu obtained the pilot license at Juvissy.


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Columba is the name of an aircraft which was designed and manufactured by Dumitru Brumarescu.The invention called “Aeroplan Brumarescu” was quite original ,had interesting elements and was granted the Romanian patent no.1844.He applied certain modifications to his design in order to simplify the controls and as a result he obtained a new patent no. 2218 (dated 10 October 1909).A subscale model was exhibited in the Carol Park, in Bucharest and then at the 2nd World Air Locomotion Exhibition held in Paris ,alongside Henri Coanda’s jet aircraft.  .He made an official request to the Ministry of War in order to raise money for his invention.

Columba was very similar to a pigeon, if we consider the plan. Columba was tested on May 27, 1911 in the Cotroceni field. The 1911 edition of the Automobile magazine reported on the event as follows: “Last week, Dumitru Brumărescu, the inventor and builder of the second Romanian airplane, made a first flight on his plane, at Cotroceni, covering a distance of 80 m flying 2.00 m above the ground, ending up in a regrettable mass accident, fortunately without serious consequences. Because the pilot’s uncertain and inexperienced maneuvers were set, the plane leaned to the left after the first 20 meters of flight D. Brumarescu was not very familiar with the control and climbing on the plane and more could not straighten him and hit some trees This fact damaged the plane but Dumitru Brumărescu was lucky the pilot and the plane were fully recovered after this first unfortunate attempt. Due to the lack of funds, Brumărescu abandoned activity in the field.

In reality he had no knowledge and no experience in the aeronautical field but he used his intuition and the information circulating in the newspapers of the time in order to achieve his project. The result was a totally different plane from the previously built ones The plane was made of ash tree wood and its lift sur faces were covered by rubber cloth. It incorporated a propeller disposed horizontally on the forward part of the plane which helped to shorten the take off distance could be operated on the pilot’s choice. A climb steer and a traction pro peller were fitted on the forward fuselage side and a pushing propeller was positioned on the wing side. The rudder was installed on the rear empennage. The landing gear had steel dampers. To keep the aircraft in position on take-off, Brumarescu chose to use two steel cables attached to two stakes fixed in the ground; following the take engine racing the cables were released by the simple operation of a handle, the ground personnel being no longer necessary. Provision was also made for two hydrogen tanks to be fitted near the landing-gear wheels to ensure the aircraft floatability on the water.


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  • upper wing span 10m
  • lower wing span 4.10m
  • wing depth 2.50m
  • length 10.30m
  • height 3.60m
  • clearance between wings 1.80m

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Another inventions of Dumitru Brumărescu

One of Brumarescu’s many interesting inventions was the automatic coupling for railway wagons. After the First World War, the Ministry of Public Works of France has put in competition the development of an automatic coupling device for railway wagons, capable of eliminating the accidents that took place during train train formation. Although Brumărescu’s proposal was among the seven (out of 450 proposed) selected by the commission, he had no chance because the proposed machete device was forgotten in the Marseille port. There, too, was lost, the author of the invention having no money to accompany and support the proposal in France, nor to recover it.

In 1912, Brumarescu enrolled and participated in the contest organized by the French Government for inventing an adequate and effective means of rescuing submarine crews in the event of an accident. The invention consists in the introduction into a sealed cabin of the submarine of a suitably equipped metal boat. This could include the submarine crew affected by the accident

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At the same time, in 1925, Brumărescu designed, designed and built a machine capable of automatically cutting reeds. The prototype of the aggregate was successfully tested on Lake Grecque, but time authorities did not order the device. Only half a century later, the idea and solutions given by Brumărescu were re-analyzed, taken over and perfected by the researchers fromMaliuc resort, Tulcea County.

 Among its inventions is a car-sled, mechanical snow-melting device on the streets, a powerless ringer, or an office map that opens automatically to the desired tab.


He remains in history as a man who boldly defied the time he lived in, a bright, creative mind, a pioneer in aviation and a passionate technician, but also a great unlucky, at least in terms of the destiny of his inventions.