There have been inventions in the history of mankind that have been game-changers of their era. The invention of the air conditioner in the early 20th century was one such invention. What started as a customized engineering solution for a local paper mill led to the invention of one of the most influential products of the century. The inventor of the air conditioner was Willis Carrier, who didn’t stop at just inventing the air conditioner but made it into one the most successful products of its time.
The Genius of Carrier
Willis Carrier was born in Angola, NY, in 1876. He attended Cornell University on scholarship, graduating with a mechanical engineering degree. Carrier was always passionate about mathematics and experimental engineering. After graduation, he was hired by Buffalo Forge, an engineering firm in the state of New York.
In 1902, a local paper printing press approached Buffalo Forge for a solution to the inconsistency in the printing of their paper machines. The ink would not stick to the paper properly because of the high temperature and humidity at the printing press. The task of finding a solution to this problem was given to Carrier by his employers.
Carrier developed a model based on controlling the humidity of the air to control the temperature. This idea came to Carrier when he was wondering if he could recreate fog in an artificial environment. He discovered that if he could change the humidity level in the air, that would also change the temperature resulting in a change of physical state for the water. For the printing press, Carrier developed a device that would have an outdoor unit and an indoor unit. There would be metal coils going through the entire system, and the coils would have water flowing through them.
Before the water would enter the indoor unit of the device, the water would be chilled. As it passed through the indoor unit, it would absorb the heat from the air, and as it flowed to the outdoor unit, it would release this heat to the surroundings. This model was based on the scientific principle that heat always flows from hot to cold. The humidity of the air was also decreased by the device through condensation of the moisture in the air.
This device was installed at the printing press and it delivered excellent results. Carrier had invented the modern air conditioner. The basic concept of that device installed in the printing press remains the fundamental principle for modern air conditions of today.
The Success of the Modern Air Conditioner
The air conditioner was a roaring success as a product, allowing Buffalo Forge to form a subsidiary called the Carrier Air Conditioning Company. The name of Carrier was a tribute to his enormous contribution to the invention and success of the air conditioner. The air conditioner was used in several types of industrial applications and even made its way to the entertainment industry through movie theaters and cinemas. The events of World War II led to an economic recession throughout the world and in 1915, the Carrier Air Conditioning Company shut down.
Carrier was not going to give up, as he formed his own company called the Willis Carrier Corporation. The air conditioner became an international success with sales all around the globe. The invention of the Carrier, allows the manufacturing industry to thrive and allowed residential users of the air conditioners to live a more comfortable life. By being able to control the indoor temperature, people were more willing to move to regions that were hot and humid. This allowed Americans to migrate to the southern states, which had hot weather during summer. The impact of the air conditioner made Carrier one the most influential engineers of all time.
Air Conditioner Services by Island Heating & Air Conditioning
At Island Heating & Air Conditioning, our experienced and certified technicians offer a full range of HVAC services including air conditioner repair and installation service. We service all areas of Oak Harbor, WA, and the surrounding regions of Whidbey Island and beyond. Apart from air conditioner services, we offer services for maintenance agreements, furnace repair and installation, air quality purification solutions, heat pump maintenance, and more. If you are looking for advice on buying a new HVAC system, our experienced technicians can offer you guidance on the right system for your home or office. We work with all brands and types of HVAC equipment. You can call us through our website or call us to book a service appointment.Tags: Air Conditioner, Invented
April 14, 2021 5:28 pm