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GB Patent: GB-180,102,472
Hydraulic engines
Joseph Gaston John Baptiste - Piccadilly, county Middlesex, England

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Not known to have been produced


Patent Dates:
Granted: Feb. 05, 1801

Patent Pictures: [ 1 | 2 ]
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Patent Specification
The inventor's title was "Count de Thiville". Thiville is a tiny village (population 519 in 1800, about 350 today) in northern France, and this patent is the only place where the phrase "Count de Thiville" can be found ("comte de Thiville" gets a half dozen matches in a Google search). The patent specification refers to practical experiments, but it is clear that he had never actually built an engine based on the designs covered by the patent. The basic premise of the invention shown in the figure is to have concentric loops of sheets of cloth, with the bottom part of the sheets submerged in water as shown in the figure. On one side (o o) the sheets are either squeezed together or kept apart so as to minimize capillary action, whereas on the other side (i i) they are kept at the optimal spacing by thin wires. The extra weight of water on the latter side will draw that side downward, rotating the shaft and performing (a very small amount of) useful work. The patent also describes a water wheel with unusual blades that overlap like reptile scales.

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