Brown, Samuel

Brown, Samuel
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b. unknown
d. 1849 England
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English cooper, inventor of a gas vacuum engine.
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Between the years 1823 and 1833, Brown achieved a number of a firsts as a pioneer of internal-combustion engines. In 1824 he built a full-scale working model of a pumping engine; in 1826, a vehicle fitted with a gas vacuum engine ascended Shooters Hill in Kent; and in 1827 he conducted trials of a motor-driven boat on the Thames that were witnessed by Lords of the Admiralty. The principle of Brown's engine had been demonstrated by Cecil in 1820. A burning gas flame was extinguished within a closed cylinder, creating a partial vacuum; atmospheric pressure was then utilized to produce the working stroke. By 1832 a number of Brown's engines in use for pumping water were reported, the most notable being at Croydon Canal. However, high fuel consumption and running costs prevented a wide acceptance of Brown's engines, and a company formed in 1825 was dissolved only two years later. Brown continued alone with his work until his death.
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Bibliography
1823, British patent no. 4,874 (gas vacuum engine).
1826, British patent no. 5,350 (improved gas vacuum engine).
1846, British patent no. 11,076, "Improvements in Gas Engines and in Propelling Carriages and Vessels" (no specification was enrolled).
Further Reading
Various discussions of Brown's engines can be found in Mechanics Magazine (1824) 2:360, 385; (1825) 3:6; (1825) 4:19, 309; (1826) 5:145; (1826) 6:79; (1827) 7:82–134; (1832) 17:273.
The Engineer 182:214.
A.K.Bruce, Samuel Brown and the Gas Engine.
Dugald Clerk, 1895, The Gas and Oil Engine, 6th edn, London, pp. 2–3.
KAB

Biographical history of technology. - Taylor & Francis e-Librar. . 2005.

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