The beginning

Andrea Rossi was born in Milan on June 6, 1950.

During his school holidays, from 1957 to 1968, he worked in his father Luigi’s machine-shop, which specialized in metal carpentry. There, he learned how to operate all kinds of machine tools: welders, lathes, benders, shears, etc. He learned how to design and build many different kinds of mechanical devices, and how to organize factory work.

These were, on the whole, quiet years for Rossi, who spent at least 8 hours a day studying and doing athletics (he held the Junior World Record for the 24-hr. run in 1969, and won the Italian road running championship in 1970).

In his studies, he had a special bent for Physics and Chemistry. In order to improve his knowledge of science and its origins from a mathematical and philosophical point of view, he enrolled in a degree course in Philosophy, attending, among other courses, Ludovico Geymonat’s special lectures on the Philosophy of Science.

Andrea Rossi graduated with honors (110/110) in 1973 at the University of Milan, with a dissertation on the correlation between Einstein’s Theory of Relativity and Edmund Husserl’s Phenomenology.

Since the beginning of his career, Andrea Rossi’s line of research has always been directed to the study of industrial systems for recovering energy from waste.

In 1974 he filed for a patent for an incineration system with a post-combustion turbine.

His studies on flue-gas scrubbing led him to patent a new high temperature filter – in the defense of the intellectual property of which a lawsuit for patent infringement was successfully filed against Bayer Leverkusen.

In order to produce and market his patented machinery, Andrea Rossi established – within “La Metallotecnica”, a family-owned business – the Dragon division, specialized in the production of waste incinerators equipped with energy recovery apparatuses, and flue-gas scrubbers.

In order to compete with global competition and achieve even better results, Andrea Rossi continued his rigorous study on the use and development of the chemical and physical processes relevant to these technologies. The results were widely discussed in L’incenerimento dei rifiuti e la depurazione dei fumi [Waste Incineration and Flue-Gas Scrubbing], published in Milan by Tecniche Nuove in 1978. The book was added to the recommended reading material for the Chemical Plants course held at the Polytechnic Institute of Milan.

Worldwide, Dragon built some 1500 waste-to-energy incineration plants in the years 1971-1996, and approximately 200 flue-gas treatment plants between 1975 and 1996.