- News Home
5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
- About Us
Engine of Progress
18 March 1998 7:30 pm
German engineer Rudolf Diesel, the inventor known for his durable engine, was born on this day in 1853. When he was 40, Diesel published ideas for an engine that he believed would be more efficient than either steam or gasoline engines. He was manufacturing his namesake by 1899.
Diesel's machine relies on internal combustion, but lacks a carburetor to premix air and fuel and spark plugs to ignite the mixture. Instead, air in the cylinder is compressed to high pressure and temperature, and injected fuel ignites spontaneously. By the 1920s, the popular diesel engine had reached the United States, and by the 1950s, a large proportion of the world's ships and trains were diesel driven, with trucks, tractors, and buses following close behind.
[Source: Roy Porter, Ed., The Biographical Dictionary of Scientists (Oxford University Press, ed. 2, 1994).]