Home » Home and Family

Shedding Some Light on the Light Bulb

Aug 17, 2007
The illumination so instantly yours whenever you flip a simple light switch comes from nearly two centuries of discovery and innovation. It started in 1811 when Sir Humphrey Davy found that passing an electrical arc between two poles would produce light. This led to the installation of arc lamps in European and American cities by the mid-1800s. But they burned out too quickly to be practical.

Various inventors grappled with the problem until James Prescott Joule theorized that electrical current passing through a resistant conductor would glow white-hot with heat energy turned to luminous energy. The challenge was to come up with the right conductor, or filament, and to contain it in an oxygen-free housing.

The solution came in 1879 when America's Thomas Alva Edison and Britain's Sir Joseph Wilson Swan simultaneously invented the electric light bulb. (That in itself is amazing.)

Swan was first to construct a light bulb but had trouble maintaining a vacuum. Edison achieved a few hours of glow time with a platinum filament in a glass vacuum bulb. "We are striking it big. Where this thing is going to stop, Lord only knows," said Edison. And Edison certainly was unstoppable.

Determined to develop a longer burning system that would require less electrical power, Edison tested untold thousands of filament materials including the carbonized filaments of every living plant imaginable. "I ransacked the world for the most suitable filament material," he said after testing no fewer than 6,000 vegetable growths!

Whatta guy. By late 1880 Edison had developed a 16-watt light bulb that could last for 1500 hours.

Lewis Howard Latimer then invented a way to manufacture carbon filaments. He also patented a threaded wooden socket for light bulbs. Can you imagine, a socket made of wood.

So began the light bulb. The gas lamp faded into history. And today, just look at the endless variety of light bulbs. From the practical to the novelty, able to so effortlessly light up your life.
About the Author
Copyright MBPCO 2006 and beyond. Elizabeth Miller is a professional freelance copywriter and a general partner in Miller Bridges Partners. For more information about light bulbs visit click here
Rating:
Please Rate:
(Average: Not rated)
Views: 238
Print Email Report Share
Article Categories
    • Artists
    • Gambling
    • Humanities
    • Humor
    • Movies
    • Music
    • Photography
    • Tattoos
    • Television
    • Classic Cars
    • Motorcycles
    • Recreational Vehicles
    • SUVs
    • Trucks
    • Vans
    • Branding
    • Business Opportunities
    • Careers and Jobs
    • Corporate
    • Customer Service
    • Direct Mail
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Ethics
    • Financing
    • Franchising
    • Home-Based Business
    • Human Resources
    • Import and Export
    • Leadership
    • Management
    • Market Research
    • Marketing and Advertising
    • Negotiation
    • Network Marketing
    • Networking
    • Organizational
    • Presentation
    • Project Management
    • Public Relations
    • Small Business
    • Strategic Planning
    • Team Building
    • Telemarketing
    • Training
    • Data Recovery
    • Databases
    • Games
    • Hardware
    • Networks
    • Operating Systems
    • Programming
    • Security
    • Software
    • Spyware and Viruses
    • Ask an Expert
    • College and University
    • Home Schooling
    • K-12
    • Languages
    • Online Education
    • Psychology
    • Accounting
    • Credit
    • Currency Trading
    • Debt Consolidation
    • Insurance
    • Investing
    • Leasing
    • Loans
    • Mortgage
    • Mutual Funds
    • Personal Finance
    • Stock Market
    • Structured Settlements
    • Taxes
    • Wealth Building
    • Coffee
    • Cooking
    • Gourmet
    • Recipes
    • Wine and Spirits
    • Acne
    • Aerobics
    • Alternative Medicine
    • Beauty
    • Cancer
    • Cosmetics
    • Depression
    • Diabetes
    • Diseases and Conditions
    • Fitness Equipment
    • Fitness
    • Hair Loss
    • Heart Disease
    • Medicine
    • Men's Health
    • Muscle Building
    • Nutrition
    • Skin Care
    • Supplements and Vitamins
    • Weight Loss
    • Women's Health
    • Yoga
    • Feng Shui
    • Gardening
    • Home Appliances
    • Home Security
    • Interior Design
    • Landscaping
    • Affiliate Programs
    • Article Marketing
    • Auctions
    • Audio
    • Banner Advertising
    • Blogging
    • Broadband
    • Domain Names
    • E-Books
    • E-Commerce
    • Email Marketing
    • Ezines and Newsletters
    • Forums
    • Internet Marketing
    • Link Popularity
    • Pay-Per-Click
    • Podcasting
    • RSS
    • Search Engine Marketing
    • Search Engine Optimization
    • Security
    • Social Media
    • Spam
    • Video
    • Viral Marketing
    • Web Design
    • Web Development
    • Web Hosting
    • Copyright
    • Cyber Law
    • Intellectual Property
    • National, State, Local
    • Patents
    • Regulatory Compliance
    • Trademarks
    • Buying
    • Selling
    • Baseball
    • Basketball
    • Boating
    • Cycling
    • Extreme Sports
    • Fishing
    • Football
    • Golf
    • Hockey
    • Hunting
    • Martial Arts
    • Running
    • Scuba Diving
    • Soccer
    • Swimming
    • Tennis
    • Dating
    • Divorce
    • Marriage
    • Weddings
    • Astrology
    • Buddhism
    • Christianity
    • Faith
    • Hinduism
    • Islam
    • Judaism
    • Meditation
    • Metaphysical
    • New Age
    • Cable and Satellite TV
    • Cell Phones
    • Communication
    • Gadgets and Gizmos
    • GPS
    • Satellite Radio
    • Video Conferencing
    • VoIP
    • Addictions
    • Coaching
    • Goal Setting
    • Motivational
    • Stress Management
    • Time Management
    • Clothing
    • Electronics
    • Fashion
    • Gifts
    • Jewelry
    • Causes and Organizations
    • Environment
    • History
    • Holidays
    • Men's Issues
    • Nature
    • Philosophy
    • Politics
    • Women's Issues
    • World Affairs
    • Air Travel
    • Camping
    • Cruises
    • Destinations
    • Outdoors
    • Article Writing
    • Book Reviews
    • Copywriting
    • Fiction
    • Non-Fiction
    • Poetry
    • Quotes
    • Screenplay
    • Tools and Resources