A.P. Kotelnykov (1865-1944) - PhD, Professor, specialist in theoretical mechanics, a distinguished ,Researcher of the USSR (1934), belonged to the dynasty of famous mathematicians. He was the Laureate of State Prize USSR (1943). His scientific activity was  formed under the influence of M.L. Lobachevsky geometry. He laid the foundations of vector calculus in non-Euclidean spaces.

A.P. Kotelnikov was born November 8, 1865, in Kazan. In 1883, he graduated a gymnasium with silver medal. In 1888, he graduated Kazan University and defended his candidate dissertation “Liquid current pressure on the edge”. In 1893, he was the assistant professor of Kazan University. In 1896, he defended his master’s dissertation “Rotor calculus and some applications of it in geometry and mechanics”. In 1899, he defended the doctorate dissertation “Projection Theory of Vectors”.

In 1899 A.P. Kotelnikov was elected as the head of the Department of Theoretical Mechanics KPI. He read the lectures on the theoretical and analytical mechanics, elasticity theory, headed practical training. He wrote original textbooks “Mechanics” and “Analytical Mechanics”. It should be noted the use of vector’s algebra, but not in full scope yet, because to get scalar vector product he used geometric product, which was common in that time. Due to his efforts the cabinet of theoretical mechanics was created in KPI. This cabinet was equipped with everything necessary for training and research.

In 1904 he returned to Kazan University where he headed the mathematics department until 1914. At that time he published his “Course of analytical geometry”, where the vector calculus is used first time. In 1914 he was invited to mathematics department of  Kiev University, where he read lectures of Advanced Mathematics and special courses on descriptive differential and non-Euclidean geometry.

Котельников Олександр Петрович в молоді рокиIn 1920-1924 he taught  Mechanics in KPI as well as Mathematics on higher women courses. Since 1924 A.P.Kotelnikov headed the department of theoretical mechanics in Moscow Higher Technical School of Bauman, carried out courses in others Moscow’s Institutes: Institute of Transportation Engineers, Chemical Technology, Forestry, Energy, Lomonosov’s Institute. Later he was invited to work in Central Air Hydrodynamic Institute. 

A.P.Kotelnikov main works

1895 Rotor calculus and its applications in geometry and mechanics Kazan: Tipo-Lithography of Imperial University
1896 Rotors and complex numbers Kazan: Tipo-Lithography of Imperial University
1899 Projective theory of vectors Kazan: Tipo-Lithography of Imperial University
1901 .Analytical mechanics of Professor A.P.Kotelnikov. Lectures of 1900-1901 years Library of chemical group of M.I.Konovalov at KPI
1902 Mechanics. Lecture course, given in Kiev Polytechnic Institute of Imperator Alexander II by ordinary professor A.P.Kotelnikov Kiev. Society “Publishing house S.P.Yakovlev”
1950р. Some applications of Lobachevsky ideas in mechanics and physics. M.-L. Gostehizdat

The material was prepared by Department of theoretical mechanics teachers S.G.Stepanenko and K.G.Levchuk