29.3.1884 Pyhajärve/EE - 3.12.1952 Tallinn/EE
August Velner graduated as a civil engineer from the Saint Petersburg Technical University of Roads and Communications in 1911. He then investigated large Russian watercourses in terms of hydrological and hydrographical regimes, such as the Jenissei or Don Rivers. After the Russian Revolution he moved to Siberia and presented in 1920 the first plan of water management and hydropower development of the Angara River scheme. He further presented a design of the Volga-Don Canal but was arrested and accused in Moscow as a Member of the Estonian National Committee. In 1921 he was repatriated to Estonia and appointed chief engineer of the Navra River Commission. He designed a large hydropower scheme which was inaugurated only in 1954 by the Soviets. In 1923 Velner founded the Estonian Hydrologic Office which he managed until 1946, when being appointed professor of hydraulic engineering at Tallinn Technical University TTU. There he submitted his PhD thesis in 1947 and was shortly later also appointed professor of hydrology.
Velner is the father of the Estonian hydrology. He initiated as the head of the Estonian Hydrologic Office the systematic hydrologic monitoring of the main rivers of his country with more than 100 stations prior to World War II. For the small surface of 45,000 km2 and a population of 1.4 millions a considerable density was covered. Velner was a founding Member of the Association of Baltic Sea States, in which eight countries discussed technical problems relating to the Baltic Sea region during six conferences from 1926 to 1939. Velner published some 40 papers and reports that describe the Tallinn Central water supply project in 1926, or the regulation of Lake Peipus in 1931. He was the president of the Association of Estonian engineers from 1935 to 1940. A sculpture of Velner is erected at the Academicians Memorial of TTU.
Velner, A. (1922). Hydrographie d'Esti. Kaubandus-Tööstusministeerium: Tallinn (in Estonian). Velner, A. (1926). Hüdraulika. Tallinna Tehnikum: Tallinn (in Estonian).
Velner, A. (1928). Kennzeichnende Zahlenwerte einiger Abflussgebiete Estlands. 2 Baltische hydrologische und hydrometrische Konferenz Tallinn.
Velner, A. (1933). Fliessformen und ihre Anwendung für Entwässerungsgräben. 4 HydrologischeKonferenz der Baltischen Staaten Leningrad 4.
Velner, A. (1933). Zur Frage der Geschwindigkeitsverteilung in der Lotrechten des Wasserlaufs 4 Hydrologische Konferenz der Baltischen Staaten Leningrad (112): 1-16.
Velner, H.-A. (2003). August Velner. Personal communication. P

Hydraulicians in Europe 1800-2000 . 2013.

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