SHEILA TERRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SHEILA TERRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Joseph Whitworth (1803-1887), British engineer and inventor. Whitworth had a major impact on engineering, pioneering the use of precise measurement. From 1834 he obtained many patents for machinery components and his company was generally regarded as Britain's leading manufacturer of machine tools. In 1841, he invented the standardised screw thread that still bears his name. During the 1850s he designed improved rifles and artillery. For these he subjected molten steel to pressure during solidification, the metal then being known as Whitworth Steel. He was created a baronet in 1869.
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