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Early Railway Chemistry and its Legacy

Overview

One of the most important parts of British heavy industry today is our railway system. Its constant appearances in news bulletins, its enormous appeal to fans or "enthusiasts", its permanent role in the lives of most of us, and its economic significance today, all underline its importance. This book describes the vital relationship between chemistry and the railway industry, all very recently discovered. It shows that the railway system would simply have not been possible without chemical inputs. This discovery ...

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Overview

One of the most important parts of British heavy industry today is our railway system. Its constant appearances in news bulletins, its enormous appeal to fans or "enthusiasts", its permanent role in the lives of most of us, and its economic significance today, all underline its importance. This book describes the vital relationship between chemistry and the railway industry, all very recently discovered. It shows that the railway system would simply have not been possible without chemical inputs. This discovery about a huge revenue-earning industry in Britain came from rare documents recently unearthed and other archival material and the book contains many rare illustrations and vast amounts of previously unpublished material. A great many engineers contributed to the enormous technological development which occurred in the railway industry between 1830 and 1923, but working alongside the engineers were the chemists, and in certain critical areas their contribution to this development was vital. It is a contribution which up until now has not been adequately recognised, and this book puts the record straight.

The book has an unusually wide appeal, being of interest to practising chemists, those interested in the history of chemistry and its role in society, historians of science and technology, mechanical engineers, and not least railway enthusiasts and railway historians. The chemist will be justly proud of the extreme importance of the subject for industry and the railway enthusiast will gain a wholly new picture of the development of the industry in Britain.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781849733267
  • Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry, The
  • Publication date: 11/25/2011
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Colin A Russell is Emeritus Professor at the Open University.

John A Hudson, now retired, was formerly a Senior Lecturer in Chemistry and is author of one book and numerous articles on the history of chemistry.

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Table of Contents

Railways without Chemists?; Rocket and its Hidden Chemistry; Chemistry, A New Force in Society and Railway Development; Testing the Waters: The Early Railways and their first Chemical Consultants; More Work for the Chemical Consultants; A New Breed of Railwayman: The Railway Chemist; The railway chemists as materials testers; Research on Railway Issues; The Railway Chemists in Collaboration; The Enduring Legacy of the Railway Chemists

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