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Who said: “We are here to celebrate the completion of the first survey of the entire human genome. Without a doubt, this is the most important, most wondrous map ever produced by human kind.”
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Thumbnail of George Brayton (source)
George Brayton
(3 Oct 1830 - 17 Dec 1892)

American engineer who invented the first commercial gas internal combustion engine. Its principle of continuous ignition later became the basis for the turbine engine.


George Brayton's Engine

George B. Brayton in 1872 proposed and built an engine that was very complete and fairly successful. Fig. 97 is a general view and Fig. 98 his oil burner.

Brayton Engine
Fig. 97

Air is compressed in the single-acting pump, which has a volume one-half that of the power cylinder. The compressed air passes from the constant-pressure receiver through pipe D and over the absorbent material e, through which the fuel is fed by a pump. Here it takes up vapor and the mixture passes the wire-guage grating and into the cylinder, where it burns. Means are provided to prevent entirely shutting off the air from the power cylinder, and thus there is kept constantly burning a small flame which increases for the power stroke. Governing is effected by a variable cut-off to the power cylinder.

Brayton Engine Detail
Fig. 98.

The power cylinder is water-jacketed, and no trouble is experienced through over-heating. A safety valve is placed in the reservoir.


Text and images from Paper No. 923, Charles E. Lucke, 'The Heat Engine Problem' presented at the New York Meeting (Dec 1901) of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. In Transactions of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers(1902), 231-232. (source)


See also:
  • todayinsci icon 3 Oct - short biography, births, deaths and events on date of Brayton's birth.
  • todayinsci icon George Brayton's Engine in Boat Trial - Experimental use of a Brayton engine to power watercraft, described in a letter in Manufacturer and Builder (1880)
  • todayinsci icon George Brayton - Obituary from Cassier's Magazine (1912).
  • todayinsci icon George Brayton's Engine - A description originally written in 1875, and updated in Johnson's (revised) Universal Cyclopaedia.
  • todayinsci icon The Brayton Engine and Cycle and Use of the Brayton Engine - from The Automobile Book: A Practical Treatise (1916), by Charles E. Duryea, James Edward Homans.
  • book icon Internal Fire: The Internal-Combustion Engine 1673-1900, by C. Lyle Cummins, Jr. - book suggestion.

Nature bears long with those who wrong her. She is patient under abuse. But when abuse has gone too far, when the time of reckoning finally comes, she is equally slow to be appeased and to turn away her wrath. (1882) -- Nathaniel Egleston, who was writing then about deforestation, but speaks equally well about the danger of climate change today.
Carl Sagan Thumbnail Carl Sagan: In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) ...(more by Sagan)

Albert Einstein: I used to wonder how it comes about that the electron is negative. Negative-positive—these are perfectly symmetric in physics. There is no reason whatever to prefer one to the other. Then why is the electron negative? I thought about this for a long time and at last all I could think was “It won the fight!” ...(more by Einstein)

Richard Feynman: It is the facts that matter, not the proofs. Physics can progress without the proofs, but we can't go on without the facts ... if the facts are right, then the proofs are a matter of playing around with the algebra correctly. ...(more by Feynman)
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