Francis Thomas Bacon, British engineer

Francis Thomas Bacon, British engineer

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Credit: LUCINDA DOUGLAS-MENZIES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Francis Thomas Bacon (1904-1992), British engineer. Bacon was educated at the University of Cambridge and after graduating carried out engineering research on fuel cells. From 1940 he worked at King's College London, and after the Second World War at the University of Cambridge. By 1959, he and his team had demonstrated the first practical hydrogen-oxygen fuel cell, also known as the alkaline fuel cell. These are widely used in spacecraft for their high efficiency. Bacon was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 1973. He was a founder fellow (FREng) in 1976 for what later became the Royal Academy of Engineering. Photographed in 1987.

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