lighting

The Introduction of Gas as a Fuel

Coal gas was first used as an illuminant in the late 18th cent. by the engineer William Murdock in England and by the engineer Philippe Lebon in Paris. It was used in London in 1802, in Baltimore in 1817, and in New York state in 1823. The invention of the Bunsen burner by the German chemist Robert Wilhelm Bunsen and the invention of the Welsbach mantle, a device developed by the Austrian scientist Carl von Welsbach that gives off bright light when placed over a flame, greatly stimulated the use of gas for lighting purposes.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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