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Technological Advancements

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    Technological Advancements

  • Textile Mills

    Textile Mills
    The textile mills, first expanding around the 1760s, gave character to the British Industrial Revolution. The new steam engines were used to power many of these textile mills, and supported the urbanization of Britain. This significantly impacted the British cotton industry, which became globally competitive.
  • Steamships

    In 1769, James Watt patented an improved version of the steam engine that helped usher in the Industrial Revolution. The idea of using steam power to propel boats occurred to inventors soon after the potential of Watt's new engine became known. The steamship, similar to the invention of the boat propeller, increased trade efficiency and increased travel speed.
  • Gas Lamps

    Gas Lamps
    Before electricity was used in the public streets, large cities were filled with gas lamps that dully lit the city. These lamps were smelly, but were a large step in the right direction. In the early 1780’s, Murdoch installed the first gas lighting with the flammability of gas. One of his main installments was in the main building of the Soho Foundry.
  • Guillotine

    In 1789, Joseph Ignace Guillotin invented the Guillotine as a supposedly more humane form of execution. It was mainly used during The Reign of Terror in the the French revolution. They saved a lot of time by decapitating many people in one day.
  • Cotton Gin

    Cotton Gin
    A cotton gin is a machine that quickly and easily separates cotton fibers from their seeds, allowing for much greater productivity than manual cotton separation. This piece of innovation invented by Eli Whitney led to an increase of cotton production in Britain starting in 1793. Due to this mass production of cotton, Britain’s trade and revenue increased.
  • Smallpox Vaccination

    Smallpox Vaccination
    In 1769, Edward Jenner found the vaccination for small pox disease. During this time period, small pox killed many people, but the vaccine provided a cure and saved many lives. This was a big step in the scientific world.
  • Canals

    The construction of canals had great impacts in England during the last two decades of the 1700s. Starting from 1817, extensive network of canals were constructed in America, including The Erie Canal from Erie, Pennsylvania to Buffalo, NY, The Ohio Canal from Cleveland to Portsmouth, and The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal from Washington D.C. to Cumberland, Maryland. The canals helped facilitate trade and transportation.
  • Railroads

    The evolution of the railroad came about in 1825, with the combination of the steam locomotive and a permanent travel way of metal rails. George Stephenson was critical in the demonstration and creation of bigger, more powerful locomotives. In the United States, the railroad routes mileage increased from 35,000 miles at the end of the Civil War to 193,000 miles in 1900. The new railroads helped stimulate transportation and facilitate trade.
  • Boat Propellers

    Boat Propellers
    By 1827, Czech-Austrian inventor Josef Ressel had invented a screw propeller which had multiple blades fastened around a conical base. This invention increased the speed of the boats, which resulted in cheaper and more efficient trade. Because boats were faster, communication was made more easily as messages and mail were transported quickly.
  • Photography

    The first photograph was taken in 1826 or 1827 by the French physicist J.N. Niepce, using a pewter plate coated with a form of bitumen that hardens on exposure. His partner L.-J.-M. Daguerre and the Englishman W.H. Fox Talbot adopted silver compounds to give light sensitivity, and the technique developed rapidly in the middle decades of the century. This invention was significant because it allowed people to capture their favorite memories or significant events in history.
  • Batteries

    In 1827, Alessandra Volta devised the first electric battery. This battery was made by piling up layers of silver, paper or cloth soaked in salt, and zinc. By 1836, batteries had become a common power source for many household and industrial applications and increased the efficiency of these products.
  • Iron Mining

    Iron Mining
    The production of coal in England increased steadily, from 2 1/2 million to more than 15 million tons by 1829. This was made possible by the utilization of ponies and carts on rails. Though it was still dangerous, the coal industry was made safer and more efficient by improved tunnel ventilation and transportation and the use of gunpowder to blast away at the coal seams, which in turn benefited one of England’s biggest and most useful industries.
  • Revolver

    In 1836, Samuel Colt invented an improved revolver from the previous one. This played a big role in wars because before this was invented, guns could only fire one bullet, were very innacurate, and took a long time to reload.
  • Anesthesia

    The gas used for anesthesia was first successfully used by an American physician, Crawford W. Long, in an operation in 1842. This is signifigant because it would lead to less painful procedures and would make surgeries easier for doctors and the patients.
  • Telegraph

    The telegraph was created by Samuel B. Morse, demonstrated in 1843, facilitated communication between North America and Europe. They used submarine cables to establish a network of communication between continents.
  • Sewing Machine

    Sewing Machine
    Patented in America by Elias Howe in 1844, he improved the sewing machine by use of the lockstitch, which greatly increased the speed at which sewing could be done. All the other improvements to the sewing machine during this time also meant facilitated efficiency in factories and made more clothes more readily. Also, if people made their clothes, it took them less time or they had the option to buy clothes for cheaper, and then people were given more free time to do more important things.
  • Chemical Industry

    Chemical Industry
    Chemical industries in 1879, including explosives and medicinal technology, lead to the mass production of dynamite, which became efficient in the digging of mines. Also, this dynamite was used in the creation of the Suez Canal to connect Africa to Asia. This invention was significant because it increased construction efficiency and led to the discovery of many raw metal materials.
  • Light Bulb

    Light Bulb
    In 1880, Thomas Edison invented the incandescent light bulb, and his electric generating station was implemented in New York City two years later.
  • Electricity

    From the standpoint of engineering achievements in the nineteenth century, the development of electricity as a source of power ranks as one of the most significant. In 1882, Edison’s electric generation system in New York City revolutionized the power source in the homes and made lights brighter and less smelly.
  • Diesel Engine

    Diesel Engine
    A diesel engine is an internal combustion engine that uses the heat of compression to initiate ignition to burn the fuel, which is injected into the combustion chamber. This is in contrast to spark-ignition engines such as a gasoline engine, which uses a spark plug to ignite an air-fuel mixture. This engine was invented and patented by Rudolf Diesel in 1892. This invention was significant because it altered the use of the engine by making it more efficient.