Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Paul-Gustave Froment

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1844 Froment electric motor at the Musee des Arts et Metiers

Born in Paris 3 March 1815. Studied at the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris. Continued his studies in Manchester. On his return to France he intended to build steam engines, but instead he opened a Paris workshop in 1844 where, among other things, he worked on a telegraph with written and keyboard signals, improved Gaetan Bonelli's electric loom and helped William Hughes (Manchester) improve his early typewriter.

He also worked on the gyroscope with Léon Foucault, for whom he also made the pendulum for his famous demonstration in 1851. In 1854 he built a simpler and improved version of Charles Shepherd's electromechanical clock.

He designed early electric motors for industrial use, for which he was awarded the Volta Prize in 1857. He used electromagnets to attract iron rods attached to a rotating flywheel. At the moment that an iron rod reached the electromagnet, the power to the solenoid was interrupted until the next iron rod approached the electromagnet.

The above information is condensed from the Wikipedia entry (accessed 1/5/19).

An 'Electromoteur' made by Froment in 1844 is on display at the Musee des Arts et Metiers.


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