Joseph Swan, British inventor

Joseph Swan, British inventor

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Joseph Wilson Swan (1828-1914), British inventor and chemist. Swan developed a primitive electric light bulb (1860) using a filament of carbonised paper. He later produced a usable light bulb (1880), but he failed to take out a patent. He improved photography techniques by inventing a dry photographic process (1871) and bromide paper (1879). Elected Fellow of the Royal Society (1894), Swan was President of the Institution of Electrical Engineers in 1898. He was knighted (1904) and awarded the Royal Society's Hughes Medal (1904). Portrait from 'History of the Institution of Electrical Engineers 1871-1931' (Appleyard, 1939).

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