Why Incandescent Light is under top 10 best Industrial Revolution Inventions

Incandescent Light: Industrial Revolution was booming and dang 24 hours weren’t enough to bring back the capital investment on machinery. Haplessly, working with age old lighting methods like candles, open fire of gaslight and later nonelectrical incandescent lamps were just yet a vapid attempt. Sounds horrifying when used in the most hazardous factory environment. The Industrialist desperately needed an alternative light source and thus the arduous history of electric lights begins.

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Success stories of Incandescent light bulb during the Industrial Revolution Invention

It all started with the spark. Even though electricity had made its way into the world long before the date, there was lack of inventions to light up the word. It’s only in the later period of Industrial Revolution electric lamps were into play. From then on the electric lamp had never ending inventions and advancements. Now, let’s look on the evolution happened.

Here is the first spark; Ebenezer Kinnersley demonstrated a concept called incandescent in 1761. This concept, Incandescent, made all other inventors to hook on and try out new ways to brighten up. These inventors made many contributions in the evolution of power and efficiency in electric lamps after then.

Invention of arc lighting, by Humphry Davy was the first to demonstrate the first ever electric light using a lot of batteries and two charcoal rods. Many streets had Arc lamps as their first ever electric street lights. The major upgrading for arc lamps were the carbon-arc lamps which happened in 1808.   `

Being the only lighting device, the carbon-arc lamps where not widely used as it required so much power which was not readily made up.  Not just the over demand for power, the lamp emitting the light so bright also falls under the drawback. Hence, these arc lamps were never commercialized and their uses were limited for large installations only (Light houses, Train stations, Departmental stores…).

Lately two individuals came up with the working model, comparatively more sustainable electric bulb. Sir Joseph Wilson Swan, the British physicist in 1878 and Thomas Alva Edison, the American inventor in 1879 made their successful model. They both had applied for the patent. Later in 1883, Edison’s English company merged with Joseph Swan’s company and established Ediswan in England resolving their dispute over the patent. The next 40 years inventor’s binge-experiments were on filaments, bulb’s atmosphere for a long lasting yet cost efficient bulb. Since the older ones have a very short lifespan and were luxury.

Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Alva Edison was born on 11th February 1847 in Milan, Ohio. He was immensely fascinated about science, especially chemistry. Edison attended school for twelve weeks before he became too difficult for his teacher. He was a hyperactive and distracted child, soon a drop-out. With puny access to education he self-thought the science through experiments. From the age of 12, he was an eager entrepreneur, setting up multiple small businesses for him and conducting regular science experiments. He received his first patent in 1868 for an electric vote recorder.

Edison’s “quadruplex” telegraph is the breakthrough invention in his life. This particular invention not only sold well but aided him to setup his own invention factory in 1876 at Menlo Park, New Jersey. This modern laboratory was the place to convert ideas into physical form, there were all materials needed to accomplish his mission, Very handy.

Edison was not the first one to invent a sustainable electric bulb yet he gets the credits. That is wholly because Edison worked on improving the electric bulb to last long in a lot more way. And thus, Edison’s bulbs happen to be widely commercialized.

Edison made the bulb practical by developing the whole suite of inventions, generators, parallel distribution of electric power, electricity consumption denoting meter… The first application of Edison’s lamp was in 1880, on The Oregon Railroad and Navigation Company steamer which is also the first ship to utilize a dynamo.


Incandescent light bulbs had their onerous journey for more than 150 years. A small spark to a life nowhere without it, not even in dreams. The impact on industrial revolution is enormous. Come on, growth was impossible without lights. It kick-started new businesses, newer technologies and localization happened (no more dark areas). Factories sprinted all day long thus increased the working hours. More the goods, more the sales, more the profit. We have the complacency for all those inventions and inventors. No matter how far we have evolved it’s their counter-intuition that had astounding impact on our life style and the never ending advancements in technology.

Further Reference


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Industrial Revolutionafter-the-industrial-revolution
dang 24 hours weren’t enoughdang-24-hours-weren’t-enough
hazardous factory environmenthazardous-factory-environment
alternative light sourcealternative-light-source
Invention of arc lightingInvention-of-arc-lighting
required so much powerrequired-so-much-power
two individuals came up withtwo-individuals-came-up-with
sustainable electric bulbIncandescent-Light-01
self-thought the science through experimentsself-thought-the-science-through-experiments
Edison’s “quadruplex” telegraph is the breakthrough inventionEdison-quadruplex-telegraph-is-the-breakthrough-invention
invention factoryinvention-factory
whole suite of inventionswhole-suite-of-inventions
impossible without lightsimpossible-without-lights
picture credit: Unsplash.com & Pixabay.com

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