Aleksandr Parfenevich Borodin

Borodin, Aleksandr Parfen’evich


Born Sept. 28 (Oct. 10), 1848, in St. Petersburg; died Mar. 26 (Apr. 7), 1898. Russian engineer and scientist in the field of railway transportation; one of the founders of steam locomotive engineering in Russia. After being graduated from the St. Petersburg Technological Institute (1870) and the Institute of Railways (1872) he performed supervisory engineering duties on the Riazhsk-Viaz’ma (until 1877), the Kiev-Brest (1877 to 1878), the Southwestern (1878 to 1896), and the Moscow-Windau-Rybinsk (18% to 1898) railways.

During the 1890’s when intensified railway construction was taking place in Russia, the scientific work of Borodin had an important effect on the technological development of railway transportation. During the period from 1880 to 1882, Borodin created the world’s first stationary laboratory for testing steam locomotives based on the Kiev workshops of the Southwestern railway. A similar laboratory was built in the USA only nine years later. Borodin did important theoretical and experimental work on the development of locomotive double-expansion steam engines. Through his initiative the first high-speed, four-cylinder steam locomotive with a tandem-compound system was constructed; in 1896, Borodin suggested the idea of steam condensation on steam locomotives. He made a number of proposals regarding the unification of locomotive and rolling-stock depots, and also on automatic brakes; he suggested efficient schemes of locating water-supply points along a railway.

Borodin was permanent chairman of the conventions of railway traction engineers of Russian railways. He took an active part in the operation of the Russian Engineering Society. He was one of the founders of the journal Enzhiner (1882), which was published in Kiev, and became its editor in chief in 1889. In 1897 the Russian Engineering Society established a gold medal in Borodin’s name for the best inventions and studies in the field of railway transportation.


Zhitkov, S. M. Biografii inzhenerovputei soobshcheniia, issue 3. St. Petersburg, 1902.
Tkachenko, F. Borodin, Aleksandr Parfen’evich. Moscow, 1949.
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