Lütschg, Otto

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Photograph[edit]

Otto Lutschg


Dates[edit]

Otto, Lütsch 12.5. 1872 (Bern, Switzerland) - 22.7. 1947 (Glion, Switzerland)

Biography[edit]

Otto Lütschg obtained the civil engineering diploma from ETH and was from 1896 to 1924 with the Swiss office for water resources at Bern. During these years he conducted extensive experiments for discharge measurement in industrial channels using the screen method. Also, he advanced novel methods for the rating of velocity meters, conducted at Papiermühle, then still headed by Josef Epper (1855-1924). Until 1934, Lütschg then headed the Swiss hydrologic department of the National Meteorological office at Zürich, and in 1935 was appointed director of the hydrologic institute at ETH, which he founded and where he remained until retirement in 1941.

Hydrological Achievements[edit]

Lütschg was an outstanding researcher in water resources, hydrology and glaciology. His special interests were the hydrological features of mountain catchments, and he published noteworthy reports on rainfall and runoff in mountains, on special catchments such as the Märjelensee. He was a member of the Swiss Hydro-biological commission, the Swiss commission for snow and avalanches for which he served as a vice- president for years. He was elected president of the International association for scientific hydrology IASH in 1933. In 1926, he was awarded the honorary doctorate from university of Bern to acknowledge his scientific researches.

In a 1935 report (in French) results of hydro-meteorological research in the Bay de Montreux basin in the area above Montreux, Switzerland were presented. This work started in the early 1930-ies. This was a follow-up of the Sperbel-/Rappengraben measurements in the Emmental (operated by WSL) and had a strong focus on precipitation measurements. In a short publication by Boris Sevruk (former expert researcher on precipitation measurements at ETH Zürich) it is reported that about 50 rain gauges were set up in the Montreux area in 1931; later, in 1933, Otto Lütschg complemented these measurements with additional measurements at Sonzier, Les Avants and Pré du Commun.

Boxes of hand-written data and notes from the Baye de Montreux observations are preserved at WSL.

Anecdotes[edit]

Reference Material[edit]

Hager, W.H. (2002). Hydraulicians in Europe 1: 601. IAHR, Madrid

Pardé, M, 1948, Nécrologie, Otto Lütschg 1872-1947,"Revue de géographie alpine", 36: 315-318

Keller, R., 1950. Niederschlag, Abfluss und Verdunstung im Schweizer Hochgebirge: Zum Lebenswerk von Otto Lütschg-Lötscher (1947). Erdkunde, 4(1/2), pp.54-67.

Schmassmann, W. Dr. h. c. Otto Lütschg-Loetscher 1872–1947, Zeitschrift für Hydrologie (1948) 10: 253. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02486131

Major Publications[edit]

Lütschg, O., 1915. Der Märjelensee und seine Abflussverhältnisse. Annalen der Schweizerischen Landeshydrographie, 1, p.358.

Lütschg, O., 1926. Über Niederschlag und Abfluss im Hochgebirge: Sonderdarstellung des Mattmarkgebietes (No. 14). Sekretariat des Schweizerischen Wasserwirtschaftsverbandes.

Lütschg, O., 1926. Beobachtungen über das Verhalten des vorstossenden Allalingletschers im Wallis.

Lütschg, O., 1928. Wasserstand und Wassertemperatur der Visp in Stalden bei Visp, Wallis (Schweiz). Geografiska Annaler, 10, pp.181-194.

Links[edit]