The History Of Electricity And Who Invented Electricity?
Many people wonder… Who invented Electricity? Electricity is a form of energy and occurs in nature, so “it was not invented”. Electricity, like many other phenomena, was discovered and gradually the knowledge about it was expanded and improved for practical use by the human being.
To understand who invented electricity, we have to know the history of electricity.
1. History of Electricity
As for who discovered it, many misconceptions about it.
Some people assume that the discoverer of electricity was Benjamin Franklin for his experiments with a kite and subsequent invention of the But this only helped establish the connection between the lightning and the electricity, nothing more. Humanity had to know the first electric charge to truly discover electricity.
The truth about discovering electricity is a little more complex than a man flying his kite. Actually, it goes back more than two thousand years and one could speak better than on the discovery, of the “history of electricity”.
The first mention of electrical phenomena is found in ancient Egyptian texts around 2,750 BC (about 4,750 years ago). These texts speak of electric fish known as ‘thunders of the Nile’ and defenders of
other fish. So the first discovery of electricity in the recorded history of man was in the form of bio-electricity.
Mention of these electric fish has also been found in Greek, Roman, and Arab chronicles. In fact, in some cases, there is even a mention of electric shocks from these fish to use as a cure for headaches and gout.
In 600 BC (AC), the ancient Greeks discovered that the rubbing of wool, fur and other light objects such as feathers with amber (fossilized tree resin) caused an attraction between the two objects, and therefore, what the Greeks they discovered was actually static electricity. At the time, a Greek philosopher named Thales of Miletus did the first experiment and investigated the static electricity effect of amber and mistakenly classified it as a magnetic effect resulting from friction. Greek Tales did not know that the discovery was electricity. It took many years and centuries for electricity to be known.
Researchers and archaeologists in the 1930s discovered pots with copper foils inside that they consider could have been the ancient batteries destined to produce light in ancient Roman sites.
Similar devices were found in archaeological excavations near Baghdad, which means that the ancient Persians could also have used a form similar to electric batteries.
In the 17th century, many discoveries related to electricity have been made, such as the invention of an electrostatic generator, the differentiation between positive and negative currents, and the classification of materials as conductors or insulators.
In the year 1600, the English physician William Gilbert used the Latin word ” electricus ”To describe the force that certain substances exert when they rub against each other. He studied both the phenomena of electricity and magnetism that it was he who distinguished between the electrical effect of amber and the magnetic effect of the magnet. He named it “Electricus” because it was derived from the ancient Greek word for amber, which was ‘ Elektron ‘.
A few years later, another English scientist, Thomas Browne, wrote several books and he used the word “electricity” to describe his research based on Gilbert’s work.
In 1752 Benjamin Franklin he conducted his experiment with a kite, a key, and a storm. This simply proved that lightning and small electrical sparks were the same thing.
In 1791, Luigi Galvani demonstrated that nerves conduct signals to the muscles in the form of electric currents, which would lead to the science of bio-electricity.
Italian physicist Alessandro Volta discovered that certain chemical reactions could produce electricity, and in 1800 the first voltaic cell (an electric battery) that produced a constant electric current was built, and so he was the first person to create a constant flow of charge electric or moving electrons. Alessandro Volta also created the first transmission of electricity by attaching positively and negatively charged connectors and driving an electrical charge, or voltage, through them.
Michael Faraday and his invention.
It was already in 1831 when the use of electricity by a man became viable when Michael Faraday invented electromagnetism
Michael Faraday focused his attention on electromagnetism and is the author of several key discoveries, such as electromagnetic induction, the base of generators and electric motors. He is also credited with obtaining electricity through a moving magnet and a coil.
In addition, he studied electrolysis in depth, discovered years earlier by William Nicholson. Later, Faraday would develop two laws, which bear his name: Faraday’s laws of electrolysis. This discovery made him the founder of electromagnetism and electrochemistry.
Faraday demonstrated that magnetism produces electricity through motion.
James Clerk Maxwell and the Cordless
James Clerk Maxwell took up Faraday’s work and expanded his studies in the electromagnetic field.
He developed four differential equations that mathematically related the electric and magnetic fields. These equations are named and are known as the Maxwell equations.
The physicist’s investigations made it possible for Heinrich Rudolf Hertz to obtain radio electromagnetic waves. In addition, the wireless telegraph and radio were born thanks to its advances. In fact, Maxwell’s legacy in all fields is one of the most decisive: over the past century, many other scientists, such as Einstein, have continued their investigations.
2. Who Invented Electricity
Edison and the first light bulb
Although many believe that he was the inventor of the light bulb, in reality, what Thomas Alva Edison did was perfect its operation so that it would be profitable to market it.
Its progress led cities in Europe and the United States to install direct current electrical lighting systems. A few years later, this system was replaced by the alternating current system developed by Tesla and Westinghouse, which in the end proved more efficient and safe.
Edison’s discoveries and research would be central to the creation of the radio or electronics valve. In addition, inventor approached other fields such as cinema, transportation by electric rail or telegraph.
Later, in the 1800s and early 1900s, Nikola Tesla became a major contributor to the birth of commercial electricity for being considered the father of alternating current.
He collaborated with Edison, and later had several groundbreaking electromagnetism innovations. He also had patents which were competing with Marconi for the radio invention.
It is well known for its work on alternating current (AC), alternating current motors, and
Distribution system in multiphase, Westinghouse the Pragmatist
George Westinghouse saw in Nikola Tesla’s alternating current system his future. He bought his project from the Serb and refined it by including an improved transformer and added an alternator. He hoped that this form of current would travel into the future of electricity and it did.
All of the electricity generated for our homes and businesses today is alternative currently.
He founded the Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Company to implement an alternating current system, which would replace Edison’s direct current system. In addition, he accumulated nearly 400 patents in his name with, among other inventions, a novel system to transport gas.
Who was the inventor of (electric) light?
The “official” inventor of electric light is the American Thomas Alva Edison, who on October 22, 1879 was successful in his attempt to light an incandescent light bulb with electricity. However, as we will see, to say that Edison was the inventor of light is to simplify a bit, because his discovery was based on the work of other predecessors.
That first Edison light bulb lasted 13 1/2 hours and was the beginning of a process of constant improvement, which has brought us the electric light that we enjoy today.
We tell you everything you need to know about the inventor of light, how it was and some very interesting curiosities on the subject.
Was Edison really the inventor of electric light?
Edison was the first to make a high-resistance carbon filament glow hot with the passage of electric current and endure.
That filament, inside a glass bell, efficiently extended its lighting, creating the first electric light bulb. Until then, street and house lighting was powered by gas, oil, kerosene, and derivatives.
However, Edison, like all inventors, leaned on the advances of many other discoverers who were pioneers in the field of electricity.
For example, Alessandro Volta, who invented the electric battery among many other things, (the terms volt and voltage were created in his honor) was the first who managed to put a filament incandescent when passing current. And he did it no less than in 1800, 79 years before.
So, technically, Edison was not the first to create an incandescent lamp: Henry Woodward, Mathew Evans, Humphry Davy, James Bowman Lindsay, and many other inventors had already created lamps of this type. So Edison relied on at least the work of 22 predecessors.
Why then is Edison considered the inventor of electric light?
Because he was the first to design one that would last, consume a reasonable amount of energy and be safe.
All previous models were barely holding up, needed too much current, or were too expensive and unsustainable. Edison invented durable, cheap, and reliable electric light. However, he had to compete for the title of inventor of light in the courts and some people consider that he was not the first. Edison, Sawyer, Woodward… If you could see how your inventions evolved and inspired others, you would be surprised that, finally, we have managed to eliminate the main stumbling block of electric light to make responsible consumption.
William Sawyer, the case of the inventor of electric light in Great Britain… one year earlier
William E. Sawyer was an English inventor who managed to design an incandescent lamp similar to Edison’s, and in fact, had registered the patent a year earlier in Britain. This would make Sawyer the true first inventor of light. Reinforcing this, the United States Patent Office recognized, in 1883, that Edison’s work had been based on that of Sawyer’s.
However, Edison disputed that claim in court for six years, until it was recognized that his upgrade to a “high-strength carbon filament” was valid. In fact, Edison and Sawyer formed a joint company to develop and distribute the invention in England, saving more legal battles.
The first uses of the electric light inventor’s bulb
Because Edison finally got a reliable light, which didn’t require too much energy, it was applied almost immediately.
The following year, in 1880, the Columbia steamship from the Oregon Railroad & Navigation company illuminated their rooms with 118 Edison bulbs. In 1881, New York was the first city in the world with a light and power plant, and it began to light up with electric bulbs, which would gradually replace the gas ones. Interestingly, the cables to carry the power were underground, rather than elevated.
As an anecdote, the first public building to use electric light was not in the United States, but in the current Czech Republic. The Mahen Theater in Brno was the first to have an electric light in 1883 and the facility was supervised by Edison’s own assistant: Francis Jehl.
The evolution of that light bulb to this day
Edison, Sawyer, Woodward… If you could see how your inventions evolved and inspired others, you would be surprised that, finally, we have managed to eliminate the main stumbling block of electric light to make responsible consumption. And it is that incandescent bulbs, until a few years ago, had the problem that only 10% of electricity was converted to light.
And the rest? It transformed into heat. This caused waste and even safety problems, as some light bulbs got so hot that they could light whatever was placed on them, for example. Today we have solved that problem with energy-efficient LED lighting, which we always recommend at Enérgya-VM.
So, the inventor of the official electric light is Thomas Alva Edison but, as Newton said of himself, he came high because he could stand on the shoulders of giants.
In other words, it took advantage of the discoveries and work of many other previous inventors, improving and shaping the current electric light.