The launch station from the 1930s was a part of the closed torpedo factory. It is a testimony to the technical inventiveness of Rijeka during this period and at the same time an important landmark of the industrial heritage at a global level. The story about the torpedo factory started with an idea of Rijeka’s citizen Giovanni Luppis about a defence weapon known as the “coast saviour”. Luppis was trying to realise his idea at the beginning of the 1860s, however without success. Fortunately, the idea appealed to Robert Whitehead, the director of the Rijeka Technical Institute.
Based on Luppis’s idea, Whitehead developed a solution that resembled a metal fish and called it the torpedo. The prototype was tested in 1866 and in 1875 the Institute became the R. Whitehead & Co. Torpedo Factory. It was the first torpedo factory in the world. The launch station, which dates back to 1930, was used to simulate the launching of missiles from ships and planes.