Fritz Leonhardt

Fritz Leonhardt (12 July 1909 – 30 December 1999) was a German structural engineer who made major contributions to 20th-century bridge engineering, especially in the development of cable-stayed bridges. His book Bridges: Aesthetics and Design is well known throughout the bridge engineering community.

Fritz Leonhardt
Born12 July 1909
Died30 December 1999 (aged 90)
EducationStuttgart University
Purdue University.
Engineering career
DisciplineStructural engineer
InstitutionsInstitution of Structural Engineers
Practice nameLeonhardt und Andrä
ProjectsCologne-Rodenkirchen Bridge
Stuttgart Television Tower
AwardsWerner von Siemens Ring
Honorary Medal Emil Mörsch
Freyssinet Medal of the FIP
IStructE Gold Medal
Award of Merit in Structural Engineering


Born in Stuttgart in 1909, Leonhardt studied at Stuttgart University and Purdue University. In 1934 he joined the German Highway Administration, working with Paul Bonatz amongst others. He was appointed at the remarkably young age of 28 as the Chief Engineer for the Cologne-Rodenkirchen Bridge.

In 1954 he formed the consulting firm Leonhardt und Andrä, and from 1958 to 1974 taught the design of reinforced concrete and prestressed concrete at Stuttgart University. He was President of the University from 1967 to 1969.

He received Honorary Doctorates from six universities, honorary membership of several important engineering universities, and won a number of prizes including the Werner von Siemens Ring, the Honorary Medal Emil Mörsch, the Freyssinet Medal of the FIP, and the Gold Medal of the Institution of Structural Engineers. In 1988, he was awarded an Honorary Degree (Doctor of Science) by the University of Bath.[1]

Throughout his career, Leonhardt was as dedicated to research as to design, and his major contributions to bridge engineering technology included:

Major works

Fernsehturm stuttgart
First modern TV Tower in Stuttgart

His major structures include the Cologne-Rodenkirchen Bridge, Stuttgart Television Tower, Hamburg's Alster-Schwimmhalle and various cable-stayed bridges in Düsseldorf.

He also worked on the design of several cable-stayed bridges abroad, including the Pasco-Kennewick bridge (1978) in the U.S., and the Helgeland Bridge (1981) in Norway.

Fritz Leonhardt Prize

This prize was established in 1999 on the 90th anniversary of Leonhardt's birth, to recognise outstanding achievements in structural engineering. The first prize was awarded to Michel Virlogeux.[3] Subsequent winners have included Jörg Schlaich (2002), René Walter (2005), and William F. Baker (engineer) (2009).[4]


  • Brücken / Bridges (4th edition), Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, Stuttgart (Germany), ISBN 3-421-02590-8, 1994 (first published 1982).
  • Ponts/Puentes, Presses polytechniques et universitaires romandes, Lausanne (Switzerland), ISBN 2-88074-099-1, 1986.


  1. ^ "Honorary Graduates 1989 to present". University of Bath. Retrieved 18 February 2012.
  2. ^ Troyano, Leonardo Fernandez: "Bridge Engineering: A Global Perspective", Thomas Telford Publishing, 2003
  3. ^ Saul, Reiner et al.: "Eminent Structural Engineer: Fritz Leonhardt (1909-1999)", Structural Engineering International 1/2007
  4. ^ "William F. Baker Awarded Fritz Leonhardt Prize For Achievement In Structural Engineering" Archived 2009-09-21 at the Wayback Machine. 2009-07-09. Retrieved on 2009-07-14

External links

Cologne Rodenkirchen Bridge

The Cologne Rodenkirchen Bridge is a steel suspension bridge over the Rhine located in Cologne, Germany. Completed in 1954, it has a main span of 378 metres. It was named after the Cologne district of Rodenkirchen.

Concrete hinge

Concrete hinges are hinges produced out of concrete, with no or almost no steel in the hingeneck, which allows a rotation without a relevant bending moment. This high rotations are resulting from controlled tensile cracks as well as creep. Concrete hinges are mostly used in bringe engineering as monolithic, simple, economic alternative to steel hinges, which would need regular maintenance. Concrete hinges are also used in tunnel engineering. A concrete hinge consist of the hinge neck, which has a reduced cross section and of the hinge heads, which have a strong reinforcement.

Deutz Suspension Bridge

The Deutz Suspension Bridge (German: Deutzer Hängebrücke) was a self-anchored suspension bridge using eyebar chains, across the Rhine at Deutz in Cologne, Germany. It was built from 1913 to 1915. In 1935, it was named Hindenburg Bridge after Germany's second President deceased the previous year. It collapsed on 28 February 1945 during repair works and was replaced in 1948 by the world's first steel box girder bridge designed by Fritz Leonhardt and Gerd Lohmer. H. D. Robinson, who later worked with David B. Steinman on the Florianopolis Bridge, another eyebar chain bridge, consulted on the towers for the design of this Cologne bridge. It reportedly later served as inspiration for American bridge engineers and was specifically cited as a design influence on the Three Sisters bridges in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as well as for the Kiyosu Bridge on the Sumida River in Tokyo.

FC Lausanne-Sport

FC Lausanne-Sport (also referred to as LS) is a Swiss football club based in Lausanne in the canton of Vaud. Founded in 1896, it plays in the Swiss Challenge League, the second highest league in the country, and hosts games at the Stade olympique de la Pontaise. The team has won seven league titles and the Swiss Cup nine times.

Franz Dischinger

Franz Dischinger (8 October 1887 - 9 January 1953) was a pioneering German civil and structural engineer, responsible for the development of the modern cable-stayed bridge. He was also a pioneer of the use of prestressed concrete, patenting the technique of external prestressing (where the prestressing bars or tendons are not encased in the concrete) in 1934.After completing Gymnasium in Karlsruhe, Germany, Dischinger went to the Technical University in Karlsruhe where he studied and received a degree in building engineering. After getting his degree in 1913, he then started working for Dyckerhoff & Widmann A.G., an engineering firm in Germany. In 1928 Dischinger went back to school to receive his doctorate at the Technical School in Dresden, Germany.In 1922, he designed the Zeiss Planetarium in Jena with Walther Bauersfeld, using a thin-shell concrete roof in the shape of a hemisphere. Their system was subsequently patented, and Dischinger published a paper on the relevant mathematics in 1928.Since the previous stay and cable bridges in Dischinger's opinion were both flawed technically and disturbing looking, he decided to publish his own cable stayed bridge. This design has been used ever since, more than 100 of these cable stayed bridges have been built.

For the 1938 design of a rail suspension bridge (not built), he had studied historical bridges incorporating inclined stay elements, such as those by Ferdinand Arnodin and John Roebling. He went on to design the 183 m span Strömsund Bridge in Sweden, completed in 1955 and generally considered the first of the modern tradition of cable-stayed bridges, although there had been many isolated examples of the bridge form before then. This employed a steel deck and cables, with large spacings between the stays typical of the early designs. It appears in Strömsund's coat of arms.Other key works include:

Großmarkthalle, Basel, Switzerland, 1929 (dome roof)

Market Hall, Leipzig, Germany, 1930 (polygonal dome roofs)

Koblenz bridge, Germany, 1935 (three arch concrete bridge)

Aue bridge, Germany, 1936

Cologne Rodenkirchen Bridge, Cologne, Germany, 1954 (with others, including Fritz Leonhardt)

Gold Medal of the Institution of Structural Engineers

The Gold Medal of the Institution of Structural Engineers is awarded by the Institution of Structural Engineers for exceptional and outstanding contributions to the advancement of structural engineering. It was established in 1922.

Heinrich Hertz Tower

The Heinrich Hertz Tower (German: Heinrich-Hertz-Turm) is a landmark radio telecommunication tower in the city of Hamburg, Germany.

Designed by architect Fritz Trautwein, in co-operation with civil engineers Jörg Schlaich, Rudolf Bergermann and Fritz Leonhardt, the tower was built between 1965–1968 for the former Deutsche Bundespost (German Federal Post and Telecommunications Agency, now Deutsche Telekom 's subsidiary Deutsche Funkturm GmbH) near Planten un Blomen park.

With an overall height of 279.2 m (916 ft) it is Hamburg's tallest structure, consisting of a 204 m (670 ft) steel-reinforced concrete lower section topped by a 45 m (148 ft) steel-lattice tower and a three-segmented cylinder of about 30 m (98 ft), which supports various antennas. There are eight concentric platforms stacked one above the other: starting at 128 m (420 ft) with the two-story observation (lower floor) and restaurant (upper floor) platform, served by two high-speed elevators. Above that at 150 m (492 ft) is the operations platform housing the workforce and equipment, and further up six differentially sized, smaller open platforms in same distances, populated with high-gain directional microwave radio relay antennas ("parabolic mirrors"). Number nine was added at 25 m height in July 2005.

After the observation platform and restaurant were closed due to asbestos decontamination, former stuntman Jochen Schweizer had a bungee jumping base installed. The restaurant will not open again due to new fire escape regulations, and the bungee platform was closed at the end of 2001.

The tower has been home to the VFDB Hamburg section's radio amateur club station "DF0HHT". It also housed a DGPS transmitting station serving the city of Hamburg's Surveying Agency.

The tower is named after the Hamburg-born German physicist Heinrich Hertz. A memorial plaque in his honour on the tower's wall reads: "Heinrich Hertz – Dem Sohn der Stadt Hamburg" ("Heinrich Hertz - Son of the City of Hamburg").

Jörg Schlaich

Jörg Schlaich (born 1934) is a German structural engineer and is known internationally for his ground-breaking work in the creative design of bridges, long-span roofs, and other complex structures. He is a co-founder of the structural engineering and consulting firm schlaich bergermann partner.

He is the brother of the architect Brigitte Schlaich Peterhans.


Leonhardt is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Robert Leonhardt (1877–1923), Austria born baritone

Fritz Leonhardt (1909–1999), German civil engineer

Gustav Leonhardt (1928–2012), Dutch musician

Wolfgang Leonhard (1921–2014), German political author, publicist, and historian

David Leonhardt (1973–), a business journalist, and Pulitzer Prize winner with the New York Times

Paul Saladin Leonhardt

Joachim Leonhardt (1929-), German scientist and marksheider

List of structural engineers

This is a list of notable structural engineers, people who were trained in or practised structural engineering and who are notable enough for a Wikipedia article.

See also architect and list of engineers.

Michel Virlogeux

Dr. Michel Virlogeux FREng CorrFRSE (born 1946, La Flèche, Sarthe, Pays de la Loire) is a French structural engineer and bridge specialist.

Paul Westbury

Paul Westbury CBE CEng FREng FICE FIStructE, is the Chief Executive Officer of engineering company Buro Happold.

Prix Albert Caquot

The Prix Albert Caquot is an annual prestigious award presented by the French Association of Civil Engineering. It is named after Albert Caquot, a famous and influential French civil engineer. The award is given for a lifetime of scientific and technical achievements, as well as high ethical standards and influence throughout the construction industry. It alternates between French and foreign nominees.


The Rheinturm (pronounced [ˈʁaɪ̯ntʊʁm]) (Rhine Tower) is a 240.5 metre high concrete telecommunications tower in Düsseldorf, capital of the federal state (Bundesland) of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. Construction commenced in 1979 and finished in 1981. The Rheinturm carries aerials for directional radio, FM and TV transmitters. It stands 174.5 metres high and houses a revolving restaurant and an observation deck at a height of 170 metres. It is the tallest building in Düsseldorf.The Rheinturm was inaugurated on 1 December 1981. It contains 7,500 cubic metres of concrete and weighs 22,500 tons. Before October 15, 2004, when an aerial antenna for DVB-T was mounted, it was 234.2 metres high.

The observation deck is open to public, daily from 10:00 AM to 11:30 PM. As a special attraction, a light sculpture on its shaft works as a clock. This sculpture was designed by Horst H. Baumann and is called Lichtzeitpegel (light time level). The light sculpture on the Rheinturm is the largest digital clock in the world.


A tower is a tall structure, taller than it is wide, often by a significant margin. Towers are distinguished from masts by their lack of guy-wires and are therefore, along with tall buildings, self-supporting structures.

Towers are specifically distinguished from "buildings" in that they are not built to be habitable but to serve other functions. The principal function is the use of their height to enable various functions to be achieved including: visibility of other features attached to the tower such clock towers; as part of a larger structure or device to increase the visibility of the surroundings for defensive purposes as in a fortified building such as a castle; as a structure for observation for leisure purposes; or as a structure for telecommunication purposes.Towers can be stand alone structures or be supported by adjacent buildings or can be a feature on top of a large structure or building.


A Typenturm (German for standard tower) is a standardised telecommunications tower built of reinforced concrete the former German federal post office (now Deutsche Telekom AG). Different types of tower were developed and built at different locations, like the series FMT 1 to FMT 16. The individual series differ in each case in the number of antenna platforms and the size of the operating projectile. The types FMT 7 to 10 are without pulpit. The type towers were usually designed on the basis of economic and functional criteria and only secondarily for aesthetics. Compared with structural steelworks, the reinforced concrete construction way is easier in the establishment and maintenance. In Germany there are about 300 towers of this type. The establishment of these towers began in the mid-1960s, when the Federal Postal Administration developed its radio relay system clearly. In the planning of the type towers engineer Fritz Leonhardt and the architect Erwin Heinle were considerably involved. Examples of type towers are among other things: Köterberg (FMT 1), Ober-Olm (FMT 1/72), Hüfingen (FMT 1/73), Karlsruhe-Grünwettersbach (FMT 2), Waldenbuch (FMT 2/72), Hoherodskopf (FMT 2/73), Hemmoor (FMT 2/81), Hunau (FMT 3), Bielefeld (FMT 3/72), Gramschatzer Wald (FMT 5), Cleebronn (FMT 6), Seesen (FMT 7), Heidenheim an der Brenz (FMT 8), Saarlouis (FMT 8/73), Landau (FMT 9), Lahr/Schwarzwald (FMT 10), Fehmarn (FMT 11), sending refuge (FMT 12), Moers (FMT 13), Blauen (FMT 14), Schöppingen (FMT 15), Hamburg-Bergedorf (FMT 16) The communications towers in Münster, Kiel, Bremen and Cuxhaven were planned by an architect of the regional directorate Kiel and actually do not belong to this type of tower. They are therefore called Sondertürme, to which e.g. also the Rheinturm, the Heinrich-Hertz-Turm and the Fremersbergturm belong. In addition, the telecommunication tower Koblenz reminded strongly of the type towers FMT 11 to 13, is a special tower, since it is larger substantially more highly and the pulpit than with the type towers.

University of Stuttgart

The University of Stuttgart (German: Universität Stuttgart) is a university located in Stuttgart, Germany. It was founded in 1829 and is organized into 10 faculties.

It is one of the oldest technical universities in Germany (TU9) with highly ranked programs in civil, mechanical, industrial and electrical engineering.

The University of Stuttgart is especially known for its reputation in the fields of advanced automotive engineering, efficient industrial and automated manufacturing, process engineering, aerospace engineering and activity-based costing. Probably the most famous graduate student from University of Stuttgart was Gottlieb Daimler, the inventor of the automobile.

Werner von Siemens Ring

The Werner von Siemens Ring (in German orthography, Werner-von-Siemens-Ring) is one of the highest awards for technical sciences in Germany.It has been awarded from 1916 to 1941 and since 1952 about every three years by the foundation Stiftung Werner-von-Siemens-Ring. The foundation was established on 13 December 1916 on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Werner von Siemens. It is located in Berlin and is traditionally managed by the Deutscher Verband Technisch-Wissenschaftlicher Vereine (DVT) (English: German Federation of Technical and Scientific Associations). Before 1960, the name of the award had been simply Siemens Ring (German Siemens-Ring or Siemensring).The award is presented as a golden ring with emeralds and rubies depicting the leaves and fruit of laurel, placed in an individually crafted cassette carrying the portrait of Werner von Siemens and the dedication to the recipient.

According to the statutes, patron of the foundation council is the President of Germany, and the President of the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt is the foundation council's executive chairman. The council votes on the recipients. Members of the council are the bearers of the ring and representatives of the member scientific and technical societies.

William F. Baker (engineer)

William Frazier Baker, also known as Bill Baker (born October 9, 1953), is an American structural engineer known for engineering the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building/man-made structure. He is currently a structural engineering partner in the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP (SOM).

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