David Budworth

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David Dutton Budworth
Born Template:Birth date
Marlebone, London
Died Template:Death date and age
Nationality British
Occupation Engineer
Known for Budworth gas turbines
Spouse(s) Julia Budworth
Children 6
Relatives Richard Budworth

David Dutton Budworth (1920 – 25 October 1975) was a first class honours Cambridge ­mechanical engineering graduate, Rover design engineer, who in 1947 established David Budworth Limited, producing areo gas turbines and industrial gas turbines in Harwich, Essex.

Personal History

David Budworth was born in Marylebone, London. He was the son of Major-general Charles Budworth, who served as an artillery officer during the Second Boer War and the First World War[1].

Budworth had 6 Children, 5 with wife Julia Budworth, grand-daughter of Thomas Gibson Bowles and major shareholder of the Lady Magazine, and Katherine who was the result of a love affair between David Budworth and Dina Griffey, a nurse privately employed to care for his mother Helen.[2]

Business Career

Budworth was a design engineer at The Rover Company Limited, and in 1947 established his business in Harwich, Essex. David Budworth Limited began producing small aero gas turbines and in 1952 he started building small industrial gas turbines. The Budworth 50 HP industrial gas turbine was packaged and marketed very successfully as an instructional unit. These were sold to educational establishments, universities and technical colleges worldwide.[3].

David Budworth died as a result of a flying accident on 25 Oct 1974, and in 1975 the company was acquired by Noel Penny and incorporated into his small aero engine turbine business. Noel Penny was also a former designer at Rover. That company stopped trading in the late 1980s.

Moby Dick

In 1956, a vast model whale was needed for the film Moby Dick; a film adaptation of Herman Melville's novel Moby-Dick, directed by John Huston and starring Gregory Peck. David Budworth came to the rescue, building the beast, which was then covered in Dunlop rubber. 

The whale "Moby Dick" was an 85-foot-long, steel-reinforced, rubberized construction. Two full models were made, costing approximately $30,000 each, both were lost at sea during shooting, necessitating a third to be built for the sequences shot in the Canary Islands. At one point, the towline of the third whale broke during filming and sailed into a fog with Gregory Peck on its back.[4]

Noel Penny Acquisition

Noel Penny Turbines was formed in July 1972 to work on advanced concepts of powerplants for industry, and to undertake research on and manufacture of ancillary engineering products.

Following a successful start, a steady expansion of activities and facilities took place, including the acquisition in early 1975 of David Budworth Limited, the small manufacturer of gas-turbines for aero, industrial and instructional purposes, at Harwich, Essex.[5] Negotiations for this purchase were initiated during 1974 prior to the death of the company's founder, David D. Budworth.

By 1975 The Budworth Puffin turbo-compressor unit was being offered in two forms, the NPT 100 and NPT 400 gasifier modules, the latter being available in turbojet and turbofan configurations for drones, powered gliders and light aircraft, and as an APU or GPU.[6]

Turbines

Budworth produced a variety of gas turbines for aerial, industrial and educational applications. Three notable gas turbines were:

Brill

A 50 hp turboshaft and gas generator/compressor.

Blowfly

A 300 hp turboshaft, which was also offered in a twin configuration with a combining gearbox.
A Budworth Puffin turbofan at the Midlands Air museum, Coventry

Puffin

A 180 hp gas turbine designed for use in a wide variety of applications, with turbojet, turbofan, turbo-shaft, turbo-prop and compressed air generator versions. Developed initially for helicopter applications, the Puffin was also offered in turboprop form or as a 180 - turbojet / 500 lbf turbofan. In one configuration the Puffin comprised a turbo-compressor with a free-turbine drive to an integrally mounted compressor for supplying air to helicopter rotor cold tip-jets and/or to air-turbine driven cruise fans. A free power turbine drove a front-mounted gearbox in shaft drive applications, or a rear mounted gas compressor.

Template:Jetspecs

Death

David Budworth died, aged 54, as a result of a flying accident on 25th October 1974, whilst approaching to land at Norwich Airport in his Cessna 310.[7]

References