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Career in the army
André Lévêque was born at Beauvais, France, as the first son of Henri Eugène Lévêque and his wife, Blanche Eugénie Paintré. During World War I (1914 - 1918), he served his country as a soldier, and was decorated with the croix de guerre.
André Lévêque joined the armed forces as a simple artillerist, but very soon, became an officer. Several times, he was cited as being very cold-blooded, serving in extremely dangerous situations. Three times (during the battles of the 14th and 15 July, as well as of the 20th of August 1918), he is said to have been exposed to poison gases (citation de l’Association des Officiers de Réserve).
After the war, as the first major in the competition, André Lévêque was admitted to the famous École polytechnique in 1919 and graduated, ranking first on 25 July 1921 . There was no diploma awarded by the polytechnic in those times). Later, he continued his studies at the École des Mines and received his diploma in mining engineering [diplôme d’ingénieur des Mines] on 9 August. 1923.
On 30 March 1928, André Lévêque defended his doctorate thesis entitled, Les lois de la transmission de chaleur par convection before a jury (MM. Koenigs, Fabry, Villat) of the Faculty of Science in Paris (Faculté des Sciences de Paris). This thesis is published in full (192 printed pages) in the Annales des Mines, Tome XIII, p. 201-299, 305-362, 381-415. The most important part of his thesis deals with the derivation of an asymptotic equation of convective heat transfer in a fully developed flow (the Lévêque equation, p. 287), found on p. 283-299. The 47 references listed on p. 413-415, contain 24 papers of German authors, 13 of these, being from Wilhelm Nusselt, and one entitled Die Wärmeübertragung im Rohr from the Festschrift zur Hundertjahrfeier der Technischen Hochschule Karlsruhe, 1925.
Career as an engineer
At the Corps de Mines, André Lévêque became an engineer in July 1923. He was put in charge of the mines in the sub arrondissement of Arras-East at his hometown in Béthune in 1924, and of the sub arrondissement Béthune East in 1927. In that same year, he was named Engineer-in-Chief of the first class.
At Béthune, on 24 July 1925, André Lévêque married Clotilde Marie Elise Foret who was born at Carvin on 19 February 1902. A daughter seems to have been born in 1925; unfortunately she died in 1928 at the age of three.
In 1929, his son, Jean André Eugène Lévêque, was born. Twenty years later, in 1949, the younger Lévêque was admitted to the Ecole polytechnique, the polytechnic that André Lévêque attended.
André Lévêque died on 1 March 1930 from tuberculosis at Pau, in a suburb called Bizanos. This place, close to the Pyrenees, has been recommended to him by the doctors because of the better air quality. He was buried at Beauvais, where he was born, only 33 years and 4 months before.
NOTE: The biographical data obtained from the Mairies de Beauvais(Oise) et de Béthune (Pas de Calais), from the École des Mines, and the École Polytechnique, Paris and especially from André Lévêques son, M. Jean Lévêque, Boulogne/Seine, are gratefully acknowledged.