* 18.03.1880 in Hardheim, Germany
+ 11.04.1945 in Essen, Germany
Walter Hohmann was born as the son of a doctor and visited the high-school in Würzburg (Germany), where he graduated In 1900. He studied engineering at the technical university in Munich (Germany) and worked from 1904 as a engineer for structural analysis in Vienna (Austria), Berlin (Germany), Hanover (Germany) and Wroclaw (Poland). From 1912 he worked as a city planner and director of the static building office and the department of materials testing of the city of Essen (Germany). Here he died in a hospital on 11.03.1945, shortly before the war ended. His honorary grave is located at the cemetery at "Meisenburgstraße" in the city of Essen (Germany).
In his spare time he devoted to celestial mechanics calculations, and in 1920 he published his book "Die Ereichbarkeit der Himmelskörper" (The Attainability of the Celestial Bodies). He developed basic principles and created advanced tools necessary for the conquest of space. His ideas were taken up for the Apollo program and the Voyager spacecraft (for example). Today he is considered a pioneer of space travel.
In recognition of his scientific achievements, a lunar crater was named after him in 1970. The Astronomical Association of Essen (Germany) gave itself the name "Walter-Hohmann-Observatory" in 1971.
Commemorative plaque at the Walter Hohman Observatory, Essen, Germany - www.sternwarte-essen.de