Gheorghe Pănculescu (engineer)

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Gheorghe Pănculescu (1844–1924) was a Romanian engineer born in the Romanian town Vălenii de Munte, district of Prahova, who designed the railway line between the capital city Bucharest and Predeal (1878).

Life and work[edit]

Born in 1844 in Vălenii de Munte, Pănculescu went to study abroad and graduated from the Zurich Science and Technology University, and then joined the 'Société des Établissements Eiffel' engineering company founded by Gustave Eiffel, recommended by famous Romanian poet Vasile Alecsandri. In 1878, Pănculescu returned to Romania in order to design and build the railway line between Predeal and Bucharest, which he completed in less than a year, despite the five-year contract initially drafted; this is attributed to the truly innovative system for joining the metal girders together in the pre-assembly phase, away from the tracks' location which he devised. In 1879, Gustave Eiffel made a documented visit to Pănculescu's house in Vălenii de Munte, in what is today the Nicolae Iorga Memorial Museum,[1] where he was shown the technology used by Pănculescu for the construction of the railway line. Eiffel himself documented Pănculescu's contribution in his work titled 'Communication sur les travaux de la tour de 300 m' written in 1887.[2] The same technology was used by Eiffel in building the Eiffel Tower.[3] Gheorghe Pănculescu became the General Inspector of the CFR SA, the Romanian national train operator.


The only significant research of this collaboration between Gheorghe Pănculescu and Gustave Eiffel has been done by Prof. Eugen Stănescu, Adjunct Director of the Museum of History and Archaeology in Prahova, Romania.[4] Stănescu went to Paris and researched Eiffel's archives, where he came across the document 'Communication sur les travaux de la tour de 300 m' mentioned above, which gives credit to Pănculescu's innovation and its crucial role to the completion of the tower. On 15 September 2004, during an official ceremony, a local school from Vălenii de Munte dating back from 1774 received the name 'The Gheorghe Pănculescu School of Arts and Crafts' in recognition of the genius of the inventor born in their town.[5][6]

Meanwhile, this is contested by Ion Bocioacă, who searched the cited document and found nothing about this collaboration.[7]



  1. ^
  2. ^ See Retrieved February 6, 2010. Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  3. ^ "Turnul Eiffel, realizat cu tehnologie romaneasca". (in Romanian). Retrieved 2017-10-17.
  4. ^ Archived from the original on February 24, 2010. Retrieved February 6, 2010. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ The Romanian text goes: 'In cadrul unei festivitati emotionante pe 15 Septembrie 2004, s-a instalat noua firma a scolii, purtand numele unei personalitati a locului dar cu recunoastere internationala prin inventiile sale in domeniul rezistentei materialelor, inovatiei aplicate in constructia caii ferate Ploiesti – Predeal si a contributiei sale, alaturi de ing. Eiffel la proiectarea si construirea celebrului turn din Paris.'
  6. ^ See this link for the school in Vălenii de Munte Archived 2011-05-08 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Turnul Eiffel "Made in Resita – Romania" ?". Radio România Reșița (in Romanian). 2016-10-31. Retrieved 2017-09-22.


  1. ^ "Turnul Eiffel "Made in Resita – Romania" ?". Radio România Reșița (in Romanian). 2016-10-31. Retrieved 2017-09-22.