Étienne Œmichen



Étienne Œmichen (1884-1955) was a French engineer and helicopter designer. His first successful helicopter flight took place on February 18, 1921. On April 14, 1924, he set the first helicopter world record recognized by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI), flying his "Oehmichen No. 2" quadrotor helicopter for 360m (1,181 ft.) in a straight line.

On May 4, 1924, he completed the first successful closed-circuit helicopter flight, flying Œmichen No. 2 along a triangular course approximately 1 km in length. The flight lasted approximately 7 minutes, 40 seconds.

Œmichen patented the first electric stroboscope in 1917. He was also a biologist, and studied insect wing function (especially in dragonflies). A detailed account of his life and work can be found in the following reference,"Etienne Oehmichen: Scientist, Engineer and Helicopter Pioneer", J.G. Leishman, Presented at 62th Annual Forum and Technology Display of the American Helicopter Society International, Phoenix, AZ, May 9–11, 2006


Milestones associated with Étienne Œmichen
November 11, 1922 First flight of the Oemichen Hélicoptère No. 2
April 14, 1924 First helicopter world record recognized by an official agency (Oemichen No. 2 machine)