Ancient Engineers' Inventions: Precursors of the Present by Cesare Rossi

By Cesare Rossi

This publication describes the innovations and designs of historic engineers who're the precursors of the current. The interval levels customarily from three hundred B.C. to 1600 A.D. with numerous exceptions. some of the oldest innovations are documented via archaeological unearths, usually little or no identified, regularly from Pompeii, Herculaneum and Stabiae and show a shocking modernity of their conception.

Most of the innovations provided within the first 4 components of this ebook have been conceived as much as the overdue Roman Empire and will be regarded as milestones, each one of their respective box. The 5th half concentrates on more moderen centuries. The 6th half offers with a few development development techniques.

Generally, for every of the awarded innovations, 3 components of study and reference are supplied: written files (the classics), iconic references (coins, bas-reliefs, etc.) and archaeological findings.

The authors didn't write this publication for engineers purely; accordingly they describe all of the units with out assuming broad technical wisdom. The authors’ major goal is to aim to speak their enthusiasm for the innovations and the inventors of the prior and to give a contribution to the attention-grabbing examine of the heritage of Engineering.

This moment version comprises new subject matters and chapters which are of targeted curiosity to engineers.

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Ancient balance scales were built in two shapes: one has two arms having equal length, the other had arms having different lengths; the first will be indicated simply as “balance scale” while the second will be indicated as “pendulum scale”. 1 The Balance Scale The word balance (that is similar in many languages) comes from the Latin “bi lanx” that means double pan. The balance scale essentially consists in a couple of pans suspended from a yoke; the latter is suspended in the middle point between the points in which the dishes are suspended.

The mathematic theory of the balance scale is not very simple (and certainly was formulated 1000 years after the first balance scales had been built), but it is possible to briefly summarize the main aspects. The precision of a balance scale depends on the quality of its components (mainly the yoke and the suspension pins) and the Fig. 1 The Balance Scale 21 accuracy of the weights; the sensibility mainly depends on the yoke’s weight and length hence on the balance size. For a thousands of years balance scales have been built in a wide range of sizes, the big ones to measure the mass of large objects and the small ones to compare the weight (hence the value) of the coins.

The dial was mounted on a hub having two orthogonal slots. Through the vertical slot passed the pointer shaft and in the horizontal one a crank was located and connected to the gear shaft. 2 Water Clocks Fig. 10 Kinematic scheme of the clock by Ctesibius Fig. 11 Scheme of the mechanism for the dial motion 49 50 4 Measuring Time along the vertical direction. In this way, the dial centre moves with respect to the pointer axis from the higher position to the lower position to the higher again, once in a year.

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