Hooke's universal joint, 17th century

Hooke's universal joint, 17th century

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Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Hooke's universal joint. 17th-century engraving with labelled diagrams showing the components that made up the universal joint devised by English scientist Robert Hooke (1635-1703). This mechanism, invented independently several times, uses gimbals to allow free universal freedom of movement in any direction. It was devised by Hooke to allow directional movement of astronomical instruments. The universal joint is shown disassembled at right and assembled at left. Hooke also published mathematical studies of the joint. This is plate 2 from Hooke's 'A Description of Helioscopes' (1676).

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