Sunday, May 3, 2009


Gregorio Zara

• GGregorio Y. Zara (March 8, 1902 - October 15, 1978) is a renowned Filipino engineer and physicist. He was the inventor of the first videophone.


A native of Lipa, Batangas, Zara finished primary schooling at Lipa Elementary School, where he graduated as valedictorian in 1918. In 1922, he again graduated valedictorian in Batangas High School, an accolade which warranted him a grant to study abroad. However the scholarship was given to another student upon the intervention of a public official. With full support from his parents he then enrolled at the University of the Philippines. In the middle of his first semester, he finally got the scholarship when his rival got sick and died abroad.

Dr. Zara then enrolled at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the United States, and graduated with a degree of BS in Mechanical Engineering in 1926. After that he obtained a Master of Science in Engineering (Aeronautical Engineering) at the University of Michigan, USA, graduating summa cum laude. Zara then sailed to France to take up advanced studies in physics at the Sorbonne University in Paris. In 1930 he again graduated summa cum laude with a degree of Doctor of Science in Physics, with "Tres Honorable," the highest honor conferred to graduate students. Zara was the first Filipino given that honor. Madam Marie Curie was given the same accolade for her discovery of radium.

Career and Contributions

Dr. Zara was probably the most productive of Filipino inventors, with 30 devices and equipment patented to his name. Among these were the earth induction compass, used by pilots for direction; the vapor chamber, used to visualize radioactive elements; the wooden microscope; solar energy devices for areas not reached by power lines; a functional robot; the photo-phone, which allowed audiovisual phone conversations; a functional alcohol-fueled plane; wooden aircraft propellers; and a corresponding propeller cutting machine. He also has written numerous papers and textbooks in science and physics, with some even written in French.
While busy in government positions, Zara also was an educator. He was an instructor of aeronautics at the Valeriano Aviation School, at the American Far Eastern School of Aviation (1933) and at the Far Eastern University (1937-41). At FEATI University, he was professor of aeronautics (1946), then head of the Aeronautical Engineering Department (1962) and later dean of Engineering and Technology and director of research. He was elected executive vice-president of the university from 1946 to 1962 and acting president in 1956.

Dr. Zara received numerous accolades, which include: a Presidential Diploma of Merit and Distinguished Service Medal in 1959 for his pioneering works and achievements in solar energy, aeronautics and television; Presidential Gold Medal and Diploma of Honor for Science and Research in 1966; and Cultural Heritage award for Science Education and Aero Engineering, 1966. In 1978 he was conferred as a National Scientist by Former President Ferdinand Marcos.

Gregorio Zara

Si Gregorio Y. Zara (1902 - 1978) ay isang Pilipinong imbentor ng two-way television telephone o videophone at mahigit 30 gamit sa eroplano tulad ng Earth Induction Compass at Vapor Chamber, ilang enerhiya na ginagamitan ng araw tulad ng Solar Energy Device, Solar Water Heater, Solar Stove at Solar Battery. Siya ang may-akda ng isang physical law of electrical kinetic resistance na tinatawag na Zara effect.


Dahil ito binigyan siya ng parangal tulad ng Presidential Diploma of Merit (1959), Distinguished Service Medal, Presidential Gold Medal and Diploma of Honor for Science and Research, at Cultural Heritage Award for Science Education and Aero Engineering noong 1966.
Personal na Buhay

Ipinanganak noong Marso 12, 1902 sa Lipa, Batangas si Gregorio. Kinakitaan na ng likas na katalinuhan kaya't nagtapos siya sa elementarya at mataas na paaralan na Valedictorian. Nag-aral siya sa Unibersidad ng Pilipinas bago nagpatuloy sa Massachusetts Institute of Technology at nagtapos ng BS Mechanical Engineering. Kinuha niya ang Master's Degree sa Aeronautical Engineering sa University of Michigan.

Ang kanyang Doctorate Degree sa nakuha sa Sorbornne University of Paris. Nabigyan si Gregorio ng Brevet d' Invention Award ng Ministre de Industrie ng Kaharian ng Belgium dahil sa kanyang imbensyong Earth Induction Compass. Ang compass na ito ay nakapagbibigay impormasyon kahit nasa itaas pa ng ere ang eroplano. Siya rin ang nakaimbento ng Vapor Chamber kung saan maaaring pag-aralan at obserbahan ng sinuman ang di-nakikitang (invisible) mga partikulo ng radioactive sources. Ang kanyang Solar Energy Device ay nakapag-iipon (converge) ng sikat ng araw hanggang 3,000 °F at ang kanyang Solar Water Heater na maaaring makapag-init ng tubig hanggang 180°F sa loob lamang ng 7 minuto; ang kanyang Solar Stove na maaaring makapagluto ng iba't ibang pagkain at ang Solar Battery na nakakapag-andar ng radio at electric fan.