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F. J. Cowlin

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F. J. Cowlin (c1891-1956) of the English Electric Co

1956 Obituary [1]

IT was with considerable regret that we learned of the death of Mr. F. J. Cowlin which occurred suddenly in Klagenfurt, Austria, on June 28th. Mr. Cowlin, who was sixty-five years of age, and the chief engineer of the steam turbine division of The English Electric Company, Ltd., at Rugby, had been attending the World Power Conference in Vienna.

He was born in London and received his technical education at East London College, under the late Professor D. A. Low, and also at the Royal Technical College, Glasgow.

He was a pupil of the late Sir Alfred Yarrow and gained the beginnings of his practical training in the yards of Yarrow and Co., Ltd., first in London and then in Glasgow.

After completing his early training he joined the firm of Willans and Robinson at Rugby in 1911, where he first became associated with steam turbine development.

After serving with the Royal Engineers in the first world war he returned to his old company, which was at that time about to become part of The English Electric Company, Ltd. Shortly after his return, Mr. Cowl in was appointed assistant chief draughtsman and for the next fifteen years was closely concerned with developments in steam turbines. It was during this period that the early two- and three-cylinder designs were evolved and the first 30MW, 3000 r.p.m. unit was produced.

Mr. Cowlin became deputy chief engineer of the steam turbine designs department in 1937 and six years later was appointed chief engineer. In this capacity he pioneered many designs, including 200MW turbines operating at 2,350 lb per square inch. He was also responsible for the designs of marine steam turbine machinery particularly for naval ships, and it was in recognition for this work that he was awarded the O.B.E. in the Honours List at the New Year.

Mr. Cowlin was a member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and an Associate Member of the Institute of Marine Engineers.

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