Who Invented Electricity?

Electricity as we use it today is the result of discoveries and inventions spanning nearly 2,600 years.

It’s important to note that, strictly speaking, no one invented electricity. It has always existed in nature and manifests itself in various ways: in the form of lightning, in certain animals such as eels, in static form, for example, in our hair, etc. The first to experiment with the principle of electricity was Thales of Miletus , a philosopher and scientist from ancient Greece. The latter had around – 600 BC. the idea of ​​rubbing an amber wand vigorously on cat hair and thus eliciting a phenomenon of attraction of light bodies to the wand. He certainly didn’t know, but he had just discovered static electricity, which he called “electron” (yellow amber in Greek). After this experiment and for more than 2000 years, no one succeeded in creating anything new or even explaining the phenomenon.

The first posts

It was only towards the end of the 16th century that some of Thales’ researches were completed. Among them William Gilbert, physician to Queen Elizabeth I of England, who found that amber is not the only substance capable of attracting light bodies, but that others such as sulphur, glass or even various resins also play this role. It is to him that we owe today’s word “electricity”, since he gave the name “Electrica” ​​to these materials, which have the same properties as amber. Later, in the 17th century, Otto von Guericke, a German scientist and politician, added ruby, sapphire and amethyst to the list of these elements.

They gave their names

In 1799, Alessandro Volta invented the electric battery, which made it possible to transform previously static electricity into dynamic electricity. His work is so important that Albert Einstein, meditating on his grave in 1933, will say of the battery that it is “the fundamental basis of all inventions. The name Volt was given in honor of this Italian physicist and chemist.

James Watt, an 18th-century Scottish engineer, accidentally improved a steam engine so that it could be used on an industrial scale. His name is known worldwide and is associated with the unit of measurement for power, the watt (W).

In 1820 André-Marie Ampère discovered the connection between electricity and magnetism and created the electromagnet. His work will introduce the world to a new branch of electricity called electrodynamics. The name ampere has been used since 1881 to describe the unit of current.

Georg Simon Ohm, a German physicist, wrote Ohm’s law in 1826. This empirical law of physics makes it possible to calculate the value of the resistance of a conductor, expressed in ohms (Ω).

To discover the different inventions of the story it is here.

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