Denis Papin, French physicist

Denis Papin, French physicist

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Credit: COLLECTION ABECASIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Denis Papin (1647-1712). 1865 illustration of the French physicist and engineer Denis Papin. Papin was an assistant to both Huygens and Boyle, moving to London in 1675. In 1679 he invented the steam digester, an early type of autoclave or pressure cooker. He also designed steam engines. Papin's designs were not successful as he could not machine his components well enough. By 1712 he was destitute and was buried in an unmarked pauper's pit.

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