Carl Isambert


October 18, 2021

Carl Isambert (born October 2, 1839 in Mariahütte, † November 7, 1899 in Mannheim) was a German engineer. He was the first full-time technical expert from a technical monitoring association in Germany.


Carl Isambert was the son of the mill director Paul Isambert. He attended a grammar school in Trier and then also the provincial trade school in Trier. He then studied from 1858 to 1861 at the Karlsruhe Polytechnic. After completing his studies, he worked from 1861 to 1868 as an engineer at the Hörder Bergwerks- und Hütten-Verein. As the first full-time expert from a technical monitoring association in Germany, he began his service on October 13, 1868 at the Baden Society for the Monitoring of Steam Boilers. He built this up and stayed with her until the end of his life. Carl Isambert joined the Association of German Engineers (VDI) in 1868 with membership number 1602. As a job title was given in the association magazine "Engineer and Investigative Commissar of the Society for Monitoring Steam Boilers in Mannheim". He pushed the foundation of the Mannheim district association of the VDI in 1869 by calling on the Mannheim-based VDI members to form one. Isambert was a longstanding board member of the district association. In 1873 and 1876 he was a member of the board of directors of the entire association. Carl Isambert was married. He died in November 1899 after a brief serious illness. A prize is named after him, which was donated by TÜV Süd and awarded by the Mannheim University of Applied Sciences.

Steam boiler revision

As the number of steam boilers increased in the first half of the 19th century, so did the number of accidents resulting from the operation of such systems. The explosion of a steam boiler in a Mannheim brewery in 1865 resulted in one fatality and several injuries. In January 1866, 22 Baden entrepreneurs founded the "Society for the monitoring and insurance of steam boilers with headquarters in Mannheim". In October 1868, Isambert, who had turned 29 a few days earlier, started his service with the company as the first full-time expert. In the same year he described his work in a report: In his first writings, he reported, among other things, of boilers with missing feed devices, wedged safety valves and an “obviously insane person” who was used as a boiler heater. At the VDI general meeting in Kassel in 1871, Isambert reported on the progress made in the formation of associations for the revision and monitoring of steam boilers. In 1887 he was one of the authors of a report that assessed the draft ordinances made available to the VDI by the Prussian Ministry of Commerce and Industry on small steam boilers and cooking vessels for the VDI board.


C. Isambert †. In: Journal of the Association of German Engineers. Volume 43, No. 49, December 9, 1899, pp. 1517-1518.

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