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1tabakov

Apollo, NASA and the Bulgarian engineer Widen Tabakoff

18.01.2019

Sonya Machorska

    Visiting documentary exhibition "Unlimited Space of the Human Mind" was opened in the Art Gallery in Belogradchik. The exhibition, an initiative of the Archives State Agency and the Vision for Scientific and Technological Growth Foundation, is dedicated to Prof. Dr. Widen Tabakoff -brilliant rocket engineer with a Bulgarian origin, reported the press service of Belogradchik Municipality. The exhibition covers the life and career of Prof. Widen Tabakoff – American-Bulgarian who took part in the U.S. space program and the first human flight to the Moon.

   Dr. ing. Widen Tabakoff (1919-2015), was born in Stakevtsi, near Belogradchik, Bulgaria. Dr. Tabakoff was learning and reading at an early age. His parents noticed his keen intelligence and drive for knowledge and enrolled him in a private school in Vidin, Bulgaria. He received his Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering in Prague, Czechoslovakia, the first of three engineering degrees. He completed his PhD in Aeronautical Engineering in Berlin, Germany in 1945. In 1957, the U.S. Army invited him to join the Rocket Research Group led by Wernher von Braun, world's leading rocket pioneer, in Huntsville AL. After this assignment, he joined the University of Cincinnati as professor in Aerospace Engineering. The Aerospace program at the University of Cincinnati soared under the leadership of Dr. Tabakoff. He established a strong externally-funded research program that still continues today, and as head of U.C's Center of Excellence in Propulsion, he also secured millions of federal funding and built the propulsion and gas dynamics laboratories and infrastructure. Through his collaboration with colleagues in astronomy, mathematics and physics, graduate studies in aerospace engineering were established. Dr. Tabakoff is internationally known for his work in jet propulsion and for uncovering the causes of erosion and damage to turbo machinery. A dedication in his honor is on view at the entrance of the lab in Rhodes Hall at U.C. This memorial displays his accomplishments, and is known as the Widen Tabakoff Propulsion Lab. He was a publisher of over 400 journal publications, featured speaker at meetings all over the world, and technical advisor to NASA, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy , U.S. DoE, NSF and many industries. Dr. Tabakoff is a Fellow of AIAA, ASME and a Graduate Fellow of the University of Cincinnati.

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