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Theodore von Karman (1881-1963), the Hungarian- American physicist. An outstanding theoretical aerodynamicist, he discovered Karman vortices, the two rows of vortices generated by fluid flow around a cylinder. These are important factors in aerodynamics, as they can create destructive vibrations. His work, which also included long- range ballistic missiles, aerofoil profiles, jet- assisted take-off, and many other aspects of flight, was instrumental in enabling the US to become a world leader in the aerospace industry. He helped set up the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at CalTech, and was a leading figure in a number of international scientific organizations.
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