MTA-BME Research Group

History of the Department

The history of the Department of Polymer Engineering Technology, as well as the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, goes back to 1871, when the Mechanical Engineering Section at József Technical University was founded, and within this the Department of Mechanical Technology. Ágoston PILCH was the first Head of already a university department until 1888 then Sándor REJTŐ succeeded him until 1924. Sándor REJTŐ was the Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering between 1901-1902, then the Rector of the University between 1920-1921. In 1912 he was a corresponding member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, and in 1923 a member of the Academy. His main field of science was materials testing. He pursued deepened research into the fields of metal, wood, textile, paper, and milling industry. On the basis of his lecture notes his 4 volume-masterpiece, The Principles of Theoretical Mechanical Technology was published in the twenties. His book about textile technology remained the bible of textile engineers for several decades. Succeeding him, Vilmos MISÁNGYI ran the Dep. of Mechanical Technology between 1924-1945, then Ödön VAJDA followed him between 1945-1947. An independent department for the textile technology education was founded for the first time in 1948.

Márton ZILAHI was the Head of the Department of Textile Technology (I.) between 1948-1959. Separated from the Department of Mechanical Technology, the Department of Textile Technology (I.) was founded in 1948 under his leadership. During his teaching career he wrote 13 technical books and university lectures in the field of textile materials testing and raw materials, spinning theory and spinning technology, as well as weaving theory and weaving technology. He was the president of the Textile Technological and Scientific Association, the founder of the Board of Light Industry formed within the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, then the founder of its descendant organization, the Board of Fiber and Filament Technology. For his scientific achievements he received the Kossuth prize.
Alajos VÉKÁSSY was the Head of the department between 1951-1974. The Department of Textile Technology (II.) was founded under his leadership in 1951, and in 1955 it united with the Dep. of Light Industry founded in 1951 and run by Kornél KUNOS (wood, paper, leather), under the name of Department of Light Industry. In 1959 this department affiliated with the Department of Textile Technology (I.) under the name of Department of Textile Technology and Light Industry. Professor Vékássy taught the Non-metal Structural Materials subject, the technological and mechanical subjects of knitting, looping and clothing industry. He wrote 10 books, many university lectures and technical articles. In recognition of being a school creator and of his scientific achievement he received the Szent-Györgyi Albert prize.
Miklós JEDERÁN was the Head of the Department of Textile Technology and Light Industry between 1974-1992. His scientific achievements were connected to the fields of textile technology and textile engineering. He had 13 registered patents and 23 published books. He obtained an outstanding achievement in the elaboration of fabric formation theory. He edited the Textile Manual, through that he created a book of primary importance for decades. He was member or president of several committees in the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He won three times the gold class of the Outstanding Inventor title. For the development of the textile industry and higher education he received the Eötvös prize.
Tibor CZVIKOVSZKY was the Head of the Department of Textile Technology and Light Industry between 1992-2001, respectively of the Department of Polymer Engineering and Textile Technology, after the department changed its name in 1992. Returning home from Canada in 1992, he widened the profile of the department and introduced the education of material sciences and technology of polymers and polymer composites. Through numerous applications he contributed to the acquisition of valuable appliances and technical instruments for the laboratory education of annually more than 400 engineer students. He is a member of several committees of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He is an international expert of two professional organizations of the UNO, and the IAEA, the UNIDO as well. He received Szent-Györgyi Albert award in 2006 for his efficient educational and scientific work and the Innovation award of the Hungarian Plastics Association in 2013.
Tibor CZIGÁNY has been the Head of the Department of Polymer Engineering and Textile Technology and after name alteration in 2004, Department of Polymer Engineering from 2001 until 2014. The subject reformation as well as the introduction of BSc and MSc education structure to the Department belongs to him. Under his supervision, the ISO 9001 Quality Control System was introduced first in Hungary to an educational Department, as well as NAT (National Accrediting Committee) accredited the fully renewed laboratory and it obtained the Strategic Research Infrastructure qualification. Under his lead, the Department became the organisation owning the most scientific and industrial projects within the Faculty, which attracted the most students. He considered the increasing of the level and efficiency of the PhD education as his primary task, thereupon 35 people acquired PhD degree. He was elected for the dean of the Mechanical Engineering Faculty in 2012 and for the correspondent Member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in 2013.

© 2014 BME Department of Polymer Engineering - Created by: Dr. Romhány Gábor