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Igor Sikorsky was born in Kiev, Russian Empire(Ukraine today) and studied at the Naval War College in St. Petersburg. His early work included the construction, as chief engineer, of the first four-motor aircraft. He was also the test pilot for its first flight, on May 13, 1913. Sikorsky's planes were used by the Russian government as bombers in World War I (see Ilya Muromets).
In 1923 he formed the Sikorsky Aero Engineering Company, which was purchased by and became a subsidiary of United Aircraft, itself now a part of United Technologies Corporation. The company manufactured flying boats such as the S-42, used by Pan Am for trans-atlantic flights and known as Pan Am Clippers.
Sikorsky had experimented with helicopter-type flying machines while in Russia. He brought his work to fruition on 24th May 1940 with the first successful helicopter flight in the Vought-Sikorsky 300, a machine with a single three-blade rotor powered by a 75 horsepower (56 kW) engine.
The Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation continues to the present day as one of the world's leading helicopter manufacturers.
- Sikorsky's autobiography, The Story of the Winged S. (originally published 1938; updated editions, various years up to 1948)
- Frank J. Delear, Igor Sikorsky: His Three Careers in Aviation (New York, 1969) – described as "the only biography"
- U.S. Patent 1848389 : "Aircraft, especially aircraft of the direct lift amphibian type and means of construction and operating the same"
- Igor Sikorsky article from ctheritage.org (reference)
- Biography from Sikorsky company
- Official Sikorsky historical archives
- Igor Sikorsky. Time magazine. November 16, 1953. (Cover)