“On the fire damp of coal mines, and on methods of lighting the mines so as to prevent its explosion. Read November 9, 1815. [Together with:] “An Account of an invention for giving light in explosive mixtures of fire damp in coal mines, by consuming the fire damp. Extracted from The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, 1816.

A little light foxing, some offsetting from the plate at the folds. Very good. Modern marbled boards. Quarto. pp. 1-24, with original title-page to the volume preserved. One engraved folding plate. Item #12084

Davy’s first description of his safety lamp. A disastrous mine explosion in England in 1813 led to the formation of the society to study the nature of these accidents and appeal to scientists to propose remedial measures. Their first report was issued in 1815 and prompted Davy, Stephenson and others to devise their safety lamps. The Davy lamps consisted of enclosing the lamp in metal gauze, and thereby lowering the ignition point of methane, the chief constituent of "fire-damp", the explosive gas in coal mines. George Stephenson arrived at a similar design at about the same time, and a bitter controversy followed.

Dibner 181. Norman 612.

Price: $1,500.00

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