Nikolay Prokofievich Melnikov was a scientist in the field of structural mechanics and theory of metal structures, the academician of the USSR Academy of Sciences. He was a student of Kiev Polytechnic Institute in 1928-1934 and then worked as an engineer, senior engineer, group leader, chief project engineer, the head of the Department of Industrial Structures of the Institute «Giprostalmost». Since 1942 he was a manager of the Moscow branch, deputy director, chief engineer of the State Union Design Office «Stalkonstruktsiya». Nikolay Prokofievich Melnikov became the director of the trust «Projectstalconstruction», which labour staff he led continuously for 38 years in 1944. He is known as an author of more than 130 major design works in the field of non-ferrous and ferrous metallurgy, nuclear industry, power engineering, mechanical engineering, oil and chemical industry, shipbuilding, transport, space and near-Earth communications, etc. He developed and implemented a lantern-frame system of a single-storey industrial building, in which a light-aeration lantern is used as a supporting element of the frame. For large-span single-storey buildings, Melnikov developed a covering of a cantilever type, implemented in the construction of a boathouse of a shipyard with spans of 48 metres and a column pitch of 24 metres. The Institute has created a methodology for calculating steel structures of blast furnaces under the leadership of Melnikov. Melnikov’s role in the restoration of buildings and structures destroyed during the Great Patriotic War is significant. Based on the analysis of the condition of collapsed and damaged structures, he developed the principles and methods of high-speed restoration of structures. He took part in the creation of the country’s first nuclear reactor, developed and researched the forms of supporting structures of nuclear reactors. Melnikov led the development of steel structures of nuclear reactors for Leningrad, Kursk, Smolensk, Ignalina and other nuclear power stations. Among other design works, it should be noted the unique designs of the Serpukhov and Dubna accelerators, wind tunnels of TsAGI and CIAM, antenna structures and radio telescopes, oxygen converter shops, pressure vessels, tanks, gas tanks, bridge spans.
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