Internal combustion engine

1678-1876 Internal combustion engine

The book of science

Tom Sharp

Jean de Hautefeuille, Christiaan Huygens, Denis Papin, François Isaac de Rivaz, Nicéphore Niépce, Claude Niépce, Samuel Brown, William Barnett, Eugenio Barsanti, Felice Matteucci, Étienne Lenoir, Alphonse Beau de Rochas, Nikolaus Otto, Eugen Langen thermodynamics

Internal combustion engine

Huygens’ engine

De Rivaz engine


Brown’s gas vacuum engine

In-cylinder compression

Barsanti-Matteucci engine

Hippomobile and the Lenoir gas engine

Four-stroke engine

Gasoline engine


The Otto Silent Engine didn’t have a spark plug; instead, a slide value in the head admitted the flame of a pilot light to ignite the fuel. It also didn’ have a carburetor, so couldn’t use liquid fuel. Although this was a four-stroke engine, in-cylinder compression and a pilot light were features of William Barnett’s patent thirty-eight years earlier.

See also in The book of science:

Readings on wikipedia:

Other readings: