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3rd of May 1695

Yes, we are travelling back to 1695 in today's blog, 1695!

A long time before men took flight the inventor of a critical aircraft component was born on this day in aviation history. His name, Henri Pitot. In 1732 he discovered that "the height of the fluid column is proportional to the square of the velocity of the fluid at the depth of the inlet to the pitot tube", This discovery was made during an assignment to measure the flow in the river Seine.

Since the first basic pitot tube, they evolved over the years. From a simple tube that just measured the flow in a river, they developed into precision instruments that are heated to avoid icing and provide air data to aircraft systems. Besides pitot pressure for speed measurement, they also provide static pressure for altitude measurement and even angle of attack info to the aircraft systems.

And all this, thanks to a hydraulic engineer born in the 17th century, Henri Pitot.

A 17th-century painting of Henri Pitot, painter unknown

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