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Contributions of Leonardo Da Vinci to the Engineering Disciple

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Throughout history, the field of engineering has held a prominent place in society. It encompasses the application of scientific knowledge in solving complex issues in the real world. The discipline is characterized by groundbreaking inventions and innovations that have touched every core of human life. The field of engineering has laid the foundation for both the present and future generations of society. Engineers have a unique ability to construct everything layer by layer, touching every aspect of human life. Their brilliant designs and plans have transformed the world that people live in. They have created a global network with breathtaking complexity coupled with ever-growing technology. The supply of clean water, availability of food, and construction of buildings that offer shelter as well as power, goods, transportation, and communication will not be available without the able thinkers, engineers, whom with their ability create what never was. This paper explores the goals of engineers and the contributions of Leonardo da Vinci to the engineering disciple.


The engineering discipline has come a long way since the beginning of time. Over the years, it has witnessed the breakthrough right from biology, healthcare, and communication to energy and environment, entrepreneurship, to name a few. Traditionary, it was predominantly for military purposes. Conversely, there was a demand for infrastructure, food, shelter, and medicine as the population grew. Engineers are the sole source of technological innovations and expertise. They play a pivotal role in solving social problems through channeling their ability of problem-solving through the application of science and mathematics in inventing new ways to a better life for members of society. Their goals and objectives revolve around the creation, processing and designing and maintenance of operations in a wide range of disciplines.

Process modeling: The advancement in technology takes different forms, that is, hardware and software. Various inputs are required, such as information, materials, and energy before piecing together into the process that executes the expected outcome (Kavakli & Loucopoulos, n.d.). The mechanism required to turn the input into output is complicated in that it involves simplification of different processes into interfaces that are easily duplicable and understandable. Engineers are artists; therefore, as in the case of software, they design algorithms through other software for specific purposes that excuse the desired outcome. They engage in process modeling to speed up and make the process easier (Kavakli & Loucopoulos, n.d.).

Design goal: Engineers use a series of steps to come up with a solution to the problem. On most occasions, it involves designing products to come up with a solution like a machine or a code in a computer that meets a specific criterion. This process involves understanding the need of who what and why the problem needs to be solved. The application of creative thinking through the use of both scientific and mathematical principles is required (Quimby, 2008). They start by identifying and defining the problem after which they formulate ideas on approach to the issue after which they create a perfect design that is most likely to curb the problem.

Creation: curiosity and imagination have brought about different inventions and innovations. Electricity, the automobile, medicine among other instrumental designs were a result of a vision. As engineers, creativity, and rationality in problem-solving are crucial to success. They are required to think outside the box through the visualization of alternatives towards problem-solving (Selinger, 2004).

The Italian painter, architecture, sculptor and engineer Leonardo da Vinci was born in the year 1452. He was a student of science whose natural genius crossed many disciplines epitomized Renaissance humanistic ideals. Up to date, he is remembered by his two famous paintings, the Mons Lisa and the Last supper. He firmly believed that art has a direct correlation to science and nature. He was mostly self-educated whereby he filled his notebooks with a series of inventions. This revealed his spirit of scientific inquiry that was later discovered (Heydenreich, 2019). They were filled with theories of pursuit, ranging from astronomy to anatomy. His era, however, did not have full knowledge of the books; thus was not appreciated among his time since he expressed his concepts in his notebooks. He was a dreamer and showed his witty on paper such as bicycles, airplanes, and his geniuses.

Leonardo da Vinci was the quintessential engineer one of his kind. He was the only one who was able to combine science and artistic imagination and creativity effectively. He was the architect and a scientist, yet if asked, he preferred to be called an engineer. Compelled with relentless curiosity and voracious hunger for knowledge, he perceived the world differently, noting the unlimited possibilities that come with it. From his natural witty blossomed designs of different kinds ranging from airplanes, bicycles as well as different theories and concepts of engineering, mathematics, and science. Most of his contributions to the engineering discipline include mathematics, flying plane, warfare, design, and hydraulics (’10 Major Accomplishments of Leonardo Da Vinci | Learnodo Newton’, 2019).

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Prolific inventor: Da Vinci apprehended ideas in advance. He designed the concentrated solar power, calculator, the dull double hall ahead of time. Moreover, most of his scientific inquiries remain unpublished while others were passed on as practical knowledge, even without being given credit for his work. Also, he designed a workable precursor for the modern diving suit. He designed it around 1500, whereby his ideas were based on the protection of the city against invaders. He would send men in diving suits to make holes in the enemy ship (Heydenreich, 2019).

As a visionary, Da Vinci designed the parachute, glider as well as a helicopter and landing gear. In his life, he was fascinated by how birds can fly free in the air, and his curiosity made his dream of building a machine that could fly his entire life. He made one of the earliest models of modern parachute centuries even before it was invented. His theory was successfully tested in the year 200 and was a success. He conceptualized an airplane making sketches of the earliest helicopter 4000 years before this became a reality. Moreover, he designed landing gear and glider.

In the field of anatomy, Da Vinci unprecedented detailed anatomy of both animals and human beings. His first study was under his master, Verrocchio. Verrocchio believed in art and allowed Da Vinci to study and draw it. He was later allowed to use a human corpse after being a successful painter. He recorded down all that he had learned, whereby he made over 200 drawings. His sketches on individual parts indicated that he had done a detailed study on human anatomy. He did so with other animals such as sheep, goats, and cows (Andrei, 2008).

In light of human anatomy, Da Vinci made a tremendous breakthrough whereby he first discovered the nature of the backbone and made sketches of the same. He also drew human skull as well as other parts successfully and the brain naming the sagittal, frontal and transversal. This was in the era in which books were not yet accessible. Also, he studied intensively most of the internal organs, including the appendix, lungs, and reproductive organs, to name a few (Andrei, 2008). He drew a scientific representation of the fetus in the womb and correctly bring the heart showing its valves in place and the direction of blood flow.

Also, Da Vinci is the father of paintings. He is the most celebrated painter that has ever lived. He showed a remarkable interest in science and engineering. However, his work has only been recognized in the last century and a half. For centuries, his accomplishment was only known in the work of his art. His masterpieces will always remain in the heart of many. His contributions to the disciplines of anatomy, biology, as well as botany and geology, will always be remembered(Andrei, 2008). He expressed his discoveries in paints whereby he keenly observed how humans respond to emotions, expressions, and gestures.

One cannot talk of Da Vinci without recognizing his skills in design, creativity, and imagination. He created the famous painting of all time. He painted Mona Lisa in the year 1503-1507 even though he continued to work on it till the end of his time. The art is recorded in the Guinness book of records being the most expensive masterpiece of all time (Heydenreich, 2019). The other painting includes the last supper which was deployed in a Christian setting and a Vitruvian man. Also, he designed the perfect city. The modern drainage is based on his sketches from centuries ago. During his tenure, there was a plague that hit Millan, where he was living at the moment, killing thousands of people (’10 Major Accomplishments of Leonardo Da Vinci | Learnodo Newton’, 2019). Saddened by the plague, he observed that poor sanitation was the leading cause that led to the higher spread of the epidemic. Therefore, he designed a city with a proper drainage system with tunnels that drain away sewage.

In light of war, he designed a war machine ahead of time. His design required eight men inside it with gun mouths poking through its side. Its system was to be operated by propelling gears. The model was tested and worked after being developed by the military (Heydenreich, 2019). There are lists of large diversified exciting projects that the great Da Vinci contributed to the world. Even after centuries of his death, he remains the ideal engineer.

Leonardo da Vinci wanted to design and create a new machine for the new world. His ideas, up to date, are the backbone of modern engineering. Even though most of his manuscripts were not published and some of his ideas could not have been built at the time, his set of beliefs and principles greatly impacted the future.

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Contributions of Leonardo Da Vinci to the Engineering Disciple. (2022, March 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 22, 2023, from
“Contributions of Leonardo Da Vinci to the Engineering Disciple.” Edubirdie, 17 Mar. 2022,
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