Crompton's steam locomotive

Crompton's steam locomotive

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Credit: MARK SYKES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Crompton's steam locomotive. Diagram of the steam locomotive developed by the British engineer Rookes Evelyn Bell Crompton (1845-1940). A steam locomotive is powered by a steam engine, which converts the thermal energy of steam into motion. The steam drives pistons to turn a crankshaft that turns the wheels. Steam trains were first developed in the 1820s and 1830s, and many designs were developed over the next hundred years before electric trains replaced them.

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