Andrea Capello

Professor emeritus of Politecnico di Milano


  • Year of nomination: 1997
  • Facility: Department of Mechanical Engineering

"On 1 November 1996, Professor Andrea Capello (graduated 1950) retired from academic activity at Politecnico di Milano due to reasons of age, after 44 years of uninterrupted service at the Faculty of Engineering first as a research assistant, then as a lecturer, as an external appointed professor and finally as a full professor in the last 30 years (since 1966).

His didactic, scientific and academic activity in this period had a profound influence on Politecnico di Milano's life. He:

  • established in 1960 and carried out (as a non-permanent professor since1991) the teaching of Mechanical Thermal Measurement and Testing, a course which later became compulsory for all mechanics students, bringing together and systematising the measurement studies, which are increasingly essential in the engineers' working and professional life;
  • wrote the book Mechanical and Thermal Measurements, a textbook used in the above teaching and also in research in the profession;
  • was a member of the Board of Directors of Politecnico di Milano and Director of the Department of Mechanical Engineering;
  • was a  delegate of the Rector from 1969 to 1982 and set up the separate Brescia branch of Politecnico di Milano, a branch which in 1982 became an independent Faculty of Engineering; was again a delegate of the Rector and the Dean of Engineering from 1989 to 1996 and set up the separate Lecco branch;
  • co-ordinated the Faculty Board for the launch of the University Diploma Programmes in Engineering in 1991, which were subsequently launched at the Como, Cremona and Lecco campuses;
  • authored numerous publications on mechanics (machine and mechanical engineering, as well as measurements of the various mechanical quantities): this research is central to driving and operating machines, in particular for the textile industry, the critical speeds of rotating shafts both at motion and during starts and stops, the suspension of motor vehicles and in general the theoretical and experimental behaviour of the instruments for measuring mechanical quantities.

Professor Capello also carried out scientific and academic co-ordination activities at a national level, including in particular:

  • from 1964 to 1966 and from 1973 to 1979 as a member of the Engineering and Architecture Committee of the National Research Council;
  • from 1980 to 1990 as President of the National Group of Mechanical and Thermal Measurements.

Professor Capello has offered considerable guidance and advice to young researchers and even now, despite his retirement, he continues to be committed to giving his help in research and organisational matters to young people."

[extract from the 1997 nomination statement]