He helped his father, Marc Brunel, to build the Thames Tunnel under the river.
His Great Western steamship was fitted out in London.
The contract for building Brunel's Great Eastern went to John Scott Russell who had a yard at Millwall. It took several attempts over three months to launch the ship (sideways) so it could be towed to Deptford for fitting out.
Brunel smoked over 40 cigars a day, kept in a purpose-built bag, which he carried with him at all times.
Born in Portsmouth, the only son of the French engineer Marc Brunel.
Worked with his father on the Thames Tunnel at Rotherhithe; was later appointed resident engineer at the site.
Designed a suspension bridge to cross the River Avon in Bristol.
Designed the Monkwearmouth Docks at Bristol; he later designed and built similar docks at Plymouth, Cardiff, Brentford, and Milford Haven.
Appointed chief engineer of the Great Western Railway (opened 1841) linking London to Bristol.
Married Mary Horsley.
Built the 'Great Western', at that time the largest steamship in the world.
Built the 'Great Britain', the first screw-driven iron ship to cross the Atlantic.
Completed the 'Great Eastern', the largest steamship in the world.