U.S.-UKRAINE BUSINESS COUNCIL

A strong international voice for business in Ukraine now
Promoting U.S.-Ukraine business relations since 1995
Washington D.C.

USUBC COLLECTION OF
HISTORIC IHOR SIKORSKY PHOTOGRAPHS

Life and career of Ihor Sikorsky, a renowned Ukrainian-American
scientist, engineer, and industrialist.

Ihor I. Sikorsky, is one of the most talented and versatile aeronautical pioneers in history. Sikorsky's aviation career spanned over 60 years and was highlighted by three major achievements: the creation of the world's first four-engine airliner; the record-breaking Clipper Ships, with which Pan American Airways explored transpacific and transatlantic airline service; and the development of the helicopter, which many historians consider to be his crowning achievement.

Ihor Sikorsky (born on May 25, 1889 in Kyiv, Ukraine [then Russian Empire] – died on October 26, 1972 in Easton, Connecticut) was an aviation pioneer in Russian Empire, and is the most renowned helicopter designer in the United States.

Ihor Sikorsky first became interested in rotary-wing aircraft when he produced two unsuccessful experimental helicopters in 1909. He had to “recognize that with the existing state of the art, engines, materials, and—most of all—the shortage of money and lack of experience…[he] would not be able to produce a successful helicopter at that time.” Nevertheless, his visionary efforts are the foundation of the technology that is basic to modern helicopters worldwide.

In 1909-1913, Sikorsky successfully constructed several aircrafts, including four-engine heavy bomber Ilya Muromets, before the Bolshevik usurpation of power in Russia. After immigrating to the U.S. in 1919, he founded the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation in 1923, and designed the first workable American helicopter, Vought-Sikorsky VS-300. Sikorsky R-4 became the world’s first mass-produced helicopter in 1942.

Sikorsky designed cargo helicopters gave the U.S. Army one of its earliest capabilities to exploit air mobility with utility and cargo helicopters. His H-19 and H-34 models saw extensive use by the Army in a variety of missions and the development and use of the CH-37 medium cargo and CH-54 heave lift helicopters are further tribute to his engineering genius.

Sikorsky helicopters are utilized in all imaginable ways in many civilian and military domains, they serve as attack aircraft that support ground troops, and transports for soldiers, wildland firefighters, and disaster-relief workers. In 2018 alone, Sikorsky helicopters saved 1,636 lives.

In October 2011, the name of Ihor Sikorsky was given to the former Tankova Street in Kyiv, Ukraine, where the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine is located. National Technical University of Ukraine “Ihor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute” and Zhulyany Airport “Kyiv” are also named after the world known helicopter designer.