Turnbull Variable Pitch Propeller

Wallace Turnbull’s invention of the variable pitch propeller allowed pilots to control altitude increase and decrease.

On 7 February 1922 Wallace Rupert Turnbull patented the Variable Pitch Propeller. Considered one of the most important developments in the history of aviation, this mechanism allowed for change in blade pitch to suit flying conditions and airplane weight. When Turnbull was posthumously inducted into the Canadian Aviation Hall of Fame in 1977, his citation read: “The patient application of his aeronautical theses to a number of problems unique to flight, and more especially his invention of the successful variable pitch propeller, have been of outstanding benefit to Canadian aviation.”

National Aviation Museum, Association of Professional Engineers of New Brunswick
New Brunswick Museum, Saint John, N.B.
c. 1922
Saint John, New Brunswick, CANADA
© 2008, New Brunswick Museum, Saint John, N.B.. All Rights Reserved.


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