and hydrograph, Arctic explorer.
Breitfus's grandfather with two brothers moved to Russia in
Catherine's times. Their
numerous descendants before the First World War retained German
Breitfuss was born in Petersburg to the family of a tailor. After
graduating from the Petrishule School in 1890, he was expelled from
Russia for anti-government activities and lived in Germany until
1897, where he graduated from Berlin University and received his
in Russia, Breitfuss, at the invitation of N.M. Knipovich in
1898 became his assistant in the Murmansk scientific and fishing
expedition, engaged in the study of fisheries in the Barents Sea. In
1902, he led the expedition and spent six years in this post.
Breitfus represented Russia in the international
conference on the status of Spitsbergen, since 1902 has been an
expert from Russia at the International Council for the Study of the
Northern European Seas.
In 1912 he was a member of the commission of the maritime
ministry, which discussed the draft G.Ya. Sedov to
the pole, the project did not support. After
the discovery of Severnaya Zemlya in 1913, he suggested that it
would be impossible to use the Northeast passage for regular
During the years 1912-1920, Breitfuss was in charge of the
meteorological part of the Main Hydrographic Office. During
this period there was not a single significant event in the Arctic,
to which he somehow would not have been involved. Breitfuss
devoted his main scientific works to the biology of the Arctic seas,
primarily the Barents Sea. He
applied no less effort to solving purely hydrological tasks, also
mainly concerning the Barents Sea. He
has compiled a bathymetric map of this sea, and conducted special
studies on its hydrology and the study of fish and animal fisheries. Great
are the achievements of Breitfus in organizing a network of polar
weather stations, carrying out a whole series of measures to improve
the industrial life on Murman, and rationalizing crafts.
Breitfuss coordinated the search for the missing polar
expeditions G.Ya. Sedov, V.A. Rusanov and G.L. Brusilov,
started at the request of the Russian public (expeditions on the
“Gert” in 1914 and “Andromeda” in 1915), one of the first he
proposed to use in the search for aviation (flights of Ya.I.
Nagursky in 1914).
After the revolution, once abroad, he did not return to Russia
and from 1918 he lived in Germany. Nevertheless,
Breitfuss continued to cooperate with the Soviet authorities.In
particular, he contributed to the organization of the expedition of
the icebreaker "Svyatogor (Krasin)" to rescue in the Kara Sea l / n
"Nightingale Budimirovich." For
many years, Breitfus worked in the international organization
Aeroarctic, created by F.
Nansen, took an active part in organizing the airship flight
Graf Zeppelin, and advised on the work to save the U. Nobile
Breitfuss made a lot of efforts to popularize Arctic research. He
is the author of several articles on polar expeditions, he prepared
a capital overview of three thousand polar expeditions, in which the
bibliography amounted to 15 thousand titles. Unfortunately,
a huge manuscript burned. Breitfuss
was the publisher of the book V.I. Albanov "To
the south, to Franz Josef Land", wrote a detailed preface to the
book of P.G. Kushakov “Two
years in the ice of the Arctic on the way to the North Pole with the
expedition of Lieutenant G.Ya. Sedov,
published in Petrograd in 1920. In
1925 in Berlin in the publishing house "Slovo" published a book by
Albanov, calling it "Between life and death".
In the period 1922-1936, Breitfus worked at the
Berlin Zoological Museum, and at the end of his life before 1948, he
worked at the Hydrographic Institute in Hamburg.
Awarded the Order of St.
He died in Bad Pyrmont, Lower Saxony Land and was buried in the
Catholic part of the cemetery Hamelin- Pyrmonter.
the southeast of Hooker Island archipelago Franz Josef Land. He
called by V.Yu. Wize in