Giants in History: Abdus Suttar Khan

The engineer whose alloys made aircraft fly faster 

Abdus Suttar Khan ( 1941 - 31 January 2008)


Abdus Suttar Khan (c. 1941 – 31 January 2008) was a Bangladeshi engineer who spent a significant part of his career conducting aerospace research with NASA, United Technology and Alstom. Khan invented more than forty alloys for commercial applications in space shuttles, jet engines and industrial gas turbines. The alloys were designed to be used at high temperatures, such as gas turbine blades and jet engines. They were also coated with environmentally resistant coatings. By making engines lighter, these alloys enabled aircraft to fly faster. One of Khan’s inventions, high strength nickel alloys, increased fuel efficiency of F-15 and F-16 fighter engines. Khan held more than 30 patents and received several awards from NASA, the US Air Force, United Technology and Alstom. Khan was also actively involved in serving the Asian community in the United States, such as raising money for Bangladeshi flood victims in 1991.  

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