ELECTRICITY TIMELINE

Main

Stephen Gray

1729 - 1730

shows that electricity doesn't have to be made in place by rubbing but can also be transferred from place to place with conducting wires. He also shows that the charge on electrified objects resides on their surfaces.

Charles Francois du Fay

1733 - 1734

discovers that electricity comes in two kinds which he called resinous(-) and vitreous(+).

Georg Von Kleist

1745 - 1746

discovered that electricity was controllable.

Benjamin franklin

1747 - 1748

He invented the theory of one-fluid electricity in which one of Nollet's fluids exists and the other is just the absence of the first. He proposed. the principle of conservation of charge and calls the fluid that exists and flows ``positive''. He also discovers that electricity can act at a distance in situations where fluid flow makes no sense.

Abbe Jean-Antoine Nollet

1749 - 1750

invents the two-fluid theory electricity.

Johann Sulzer

1752 - 1753

Sulzer puts lead and silver together in his mouth, performing the first recorded ``tongue test'' of a battery.

Joseph Louis Lagrange

1764 - 1765

discovers the divergence theorem in connection with the study of gravitation. It later becomes known as Gauss's law

Joseph Priestly

1766 - 1767

acting on a suggestion in a letter from Benjamin Franklin, he showed that hollow charged vessels contain no charge on the inside and based on his knowledge that hollow shells of mass have no gravity inside correctly thinking that the electric force law is inverse square.

Charles Augustin Coulomb

1785 - 1786

uses a torsion balance to verify that the electric force law is inverse square. He also proposes a combined fluid/action-at-a-distance theory like that of Aepinus but with two conducting fluids instead of one. He also discovers that the electric force near a conductor is proportional to its surface charge density and makes contributions to the two-fluid theory of magnetism.

Luigi Galvani

1786 - 1787

demonstrated what we now understand to be the electrical basis of nerve impulses when he made frog muscles twitch by jolting them with a spark from an electrostatic machine.

Alessandro Volta

1793 - 1794

makes the first batteries and argues that animal electricity is just ordinary electricity flowing through the frog legs under the impetus of the force produced by the contact of dissimilar metals. He discovers the importance of ``completing the circuit.'' In 1800 he discovers the Voltaic pile (dissimilar metals separated by wet cardboard) which greatly increases the magnitude of the effect.