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Interesting Facts about Australian scientist and inventor David Warren



Interesting Facts about Australian scientist and inventor David Warren

Search engine giant Google celebrates the 96th birthday of Australian scientist David Warren, best known for inventing and developing the flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder (also known as FDR, CVR, and “the black box”), with a Google Doodle on March 20, 2021.

david warrens 95th birthday
Google Doodle on David Warren’s 96th Birthday

Here is a look at the life and work of David Warren.


  • Birth name: David Ronald de Mey Warren
  • Birthdate: 20 March 1925
  • Birthplace: Groote Eylandt, Northern Territory, Australia
  • Died on: 19 July 2010 (aged 85)
  • Death place: Melbourne, Australia
  • Father name: Rev Hubert
  • Mother name: Ellie Warren
  • Spouse: Ruth Meadows
  • Nationality: Australian
  • Education:
    • University of Sydney (BSc)
    • Imperial College London (Ph.D.)
    • University of Melbourne (DIC, DipEd)
  • Notable work: Flight data recorder, cockpit voice recorder, “the black box”
  • Notable awards and honors:
    • FAIE – Fellow of the Australian Institute of Energy
    • The Australian Institute of Energy Medal (1999)
    • Hartnett Medal of the Royal Society of the Arts (2000)
    • Centenary Medal (2001)
    • Lawrence Hargrave Award of the Royal Aeronautical Society (2001)
    • Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) (2002)
    • ICAO Edward Warner Award (2016)

Read More: David Warren: Google Doodle celebrates the 96th birthday of the World’s first inventor of the black box and flight data recorder

30 Interesting Facts about David Warren

  1. David Warren (full name David Ronald de Mey Warren) Was an Australian inventor.
  1. He is generally acclaimed for his invention of the Flight data recorder (invented in 1956), or commonly known as the “black box”
  1. David Warren was born on the 20th of March, 1925, on Groote Eylandt, an island off the coast of the Northern Territory, Austalia.
  1. He was the first white child of European descent born on the island.
  1. At the point when David Warren was four years old, he was shipped off Tasmania and Sydney to spend the greater part of the next 12 years in boarding schools (Launceston Grammar School in Tasmania and Trinity Grammar School in Sydney).
  1. David Warren was educated at Launceston Church Grammar School and Trinity Grammar School, New South Wales.
  1. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree with Honors from the University of Sydney, a Ph.D. in fuels and energy from Imperial College London, a Diploma of Imperial College, and a Diploma of Education from the University of Melbourne.
  1. David Warren had gotten a crystal set from his dad just before the disaster that began his interest in beginner radio and electronics.
  1. Very nearly 20 years later, when the age of commercial jet airplane was simply starting, David Warren worked as a chemist, specializing in airplane fuels at the Aeronautical Research Laboratories.
  1. Following a period as a teacher in Victoria and Sydney, in 1952 David Warren joined the Aeronautical Research Laboratories (ARL) of the Defense Science and Technology Organization (DSTO) in Melbourne. Here he specialized in the chemistry of airplane fuels.
  1. David Warren worked at what is presently the Defense Science and Technology Organization’s Aeronautical Research Laboratories in Melbourne from 1952 to 1983, ascending to the level of a principal research scientist.
  1. While there, he thought of the idea for the cockpit voice recorder while exploring an accident of the world’s first commercial jet aircraft, the Comet, in 1953, after seeing a miniature voice recorder at a career expo.
  1. Dr. David Warren was working as a researcher at Melbourne’s Aeronautical Research Laboratory, where he was assisting with investigating the 1953 secret accident of a Comet jetliner.
  1. Warren’s innovation, which depended on magnetic recording media, permitted simply deleting and re-recording, which made it viable for routine line service.
  1. David Warren’s idea of cockpit voice recording added another dimension to instrument data in-flight recorders and has demonstrated incredible significance for accident examination.
  1. His paper “A Device for Assisting Investigation into Aircraft Accidents” (1954) depicted the theoretical system and by 1956 he had effectively made a prototype the “black box”, named the “ARL Flight Memory Unit”, which permitted the storage of as long as four hours of voice and flight-instrument data.
  1. Dr. David Warren joined recording instruments on a separate channel – his advantage in electronics as a student was splendidly applied to transform instrument readings into recordable dots and bleeps.
  1. Warren kept on lead the project, building up the Flight Memory gadget to record more instruments with greater precision. This prompted the first commercially created flight recorder-the Red Egg.
  1. The “Black Box” is a gadget that records in-flight discussions and data. Warren thought of recording the flight group’s discussion on a gadget that could be ensured to expand its odds of enduring the accident.
  1. Even though it has the name “Black Box”, it is covered with heat-resistant bright orange paint for high visibility in the wreckage, and the Black Box is typically mounted in the airplane’s tail segment, where it is bound to endure a serious accident.
  1. Luckily, the 1958 visit to Australia of a British official, Robert Hardingham (later Sir Robert), CEO of the Air Registration Board, and a previous de Havilland representative, was to change the circumstance. He quickly perceived the significance of the invention and orchestrated Warren to visit the UK to exhibit the model.
  1. While a student at the University of Sydney, David met Ruth Meadows, who became his wife and lifetime supporter.
  1. Together, they raised a family and shared an interest in science and education. At the point when he retired, David and Ruth lived in Caulfield South, Victoria, in regular contact with their four children and seven grandchildren.
  1. David Warren’s work at the Defense Science and Technology Organization proceeded until his retirement in 1983. In 2001 he got the Lawrence Hargrave award for exceptional accomplishments in Australian aeronautics and in 2002 he was appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia for his service of the aviation industry.
  1. In November 2008, Qantas named one of their Airbus A380s after Warren out of appreciation for his services to aviation.
  1. David Warren died at 85 years old on 2010, 19 July, in Melbourne, Australia. After his demise, He was buried in a casket bearing the label “Flight Recorder Inventor; Do Not Open”.
  1. In June 2012, the ACT Government named a street, David Warren Road, in the suburb of Hume in honor of Warren.
  1. David Warren was enlisted into the Australian Aviation Hall of Fame on 16 November 2013.
  1. On 25 March 2014, the Defense Science and Technology Organization renamed their Canberra headquarters to the David Warren Building.
  1. On 20 March 2021, Google honored David Warren’s 96th Birthday with a Google Doodle in Australia, New Zealand Thailand, and Vietnam.


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