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Nikolaus August Otto (1832-1891), German engineer. Otto worked on several early internal combustion engines, improving the existing design of Etienne Lenoir. Otto's engine of 1862 was followed by the Otto-Langen engine of 1864 which won the Grand Prize at the 1867 Paris World Exhibition. The most successful engine was the Otto Silent Engine (or Rings-Schumm engine) of 1876. Using in-cylinder compression and the principle of the Otto cycle, it forms the basis of modern car engines. Artwork from 'Moteurs' (1911) by French civil engineer Max de Nansouty (1854-1913), part of the 'Les merveilles de la science' series of 1867-1891 by Louis Figuier.
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