Inventions From Ireland That Had Global Impact

Inventions from Ireland play a vital role for mankind. Today, we are going to mention several of them for the education of our readers.

1. The Bacon Rasher By Henry Denny in 1820

An essential part of this ‘full Irish,’ the bacon rasher, was founded by Henry Denny, a Waterford butcher. Denny secured numerous bacon-curing tactics and completely re-invented the procedure of how to cure bacon. Before this, bacon has been cured by soaking huge chunks of meat in brine.  Denny chose to use long flat pieces of meat rather than balls and substituted the brine for salt.

Soon after, Denny started exporting to mainland Europe, the Americas, and as far afield as India. The general quality and shelf-life of the bacon were dramatically improved. It was an ingenious though simple innovation for the time.

2. Equipment For Whiskey Distilling By Aeneas Coffey in 1830

A Dublin chap with a very exotic title, Aeneas Coffey, came up with the world’s first heat-exchange device in 1830. This may not look like that big a deal, but this very efficient small piece of equipment resulted in huge distilling advances, such as whiskey.

3. The Induction Coil By Rev. Nicholas Callan in 1836

Image source: wikipedia

The induction coil was devised by a priest. A professor of science at St. Patrick’s College Maynooth, by the name of Rev. Nicholas Callan. He was among Ireland’s greatest inventors. Callan wound two long wires near the end of an electromagnet for the induction coil and attached the end of one wire to a battery. When he interfered with or disrupted the current from the battery, he got a spectacular spark at the end of the 2nd unconnected coil, and as a result, the induction coil was born. Funnily sufficient, the Reverend could knock a future archbishop of Dublin unconscious while carrying out evaluations for his induction coil. Callan’s invention, which is over 170 years old, is still utilized in car ignitions today.

4. The Hypodermic Syringe By Francis Rynd in 1844

Francis Rynd, a Dublin physician, used the world’s first subcutaneous injection with his self-made hypodermic syringe. Rynd had been treating a lady suffering from face pain for years and took morphine tablets without relief. Rynd determined to put the morphine right under her skin and near the nerves. He invented a narrow tube and a cutting tool called a trocar. Four puncture holes were created, the morphine flowed through the tubes, and the rest, as they say, is history.

5. The Binaural Stethoscope By Arthur Leared in 1851

One of the most needed tools in modern medicine, the binaural stethoscope, was developed by a guy from the South-East of Ireland. The stethoscope was initially developed in 1819 by a Frenchman, specifically, Rene Laennec. Arthur Leared , a Wexford native, realized that Laennec’s instrument could be more effective, so he joined two earpieces into the listening barrel with rubber tubes. Leared went on to exhibit the stethoscope in the Great Exhibition in London in 1851 and got critical acclaim. The binaural stethoscope opened the way for the contemporary stethoscope’s growth (worn well by George Clooney in ER).

6. Guinness By Arthur Guinness in 1759

Well, maybe this is not so surprising, but its popularity and longevity have made it Ireland’s most successful and identifiable export. Undoubtedly, the most famous Irish export worldwide drunk around the planet and adored by millions: Guinness.

Arthur Guinness started steeping Guinness in Leixlip, County Kildare, Before moving to St. Jame’s Gate Brewery. In 1759, he signed a 9,000-year rental at £45 each year. That is how confident he was in his product.

Today, 251 years on, the best selling alcoholic beverage of all time boasts of earnings exceeding $2.6 billion. To Arthur, Sláinte!

7. Seismology By Robert Mallet around 1857

Seismology, also known as the Science of Earthquakes, has an Irish man credit for its presence. Robert Mallet was born in 1810 in Dublin and educated at Trinity College, graduating at the age of 20 with a degree in science and math. After an earthquake that devastated Padula in Italy in 1857, causing 11,000 deaths, Mallet traveled to the region to record and investigate the damage. The resulting volume,’ The First Principles of Observational Seismology, is widely considered a cornerstone of this subject.

8. Trans-Atlantic calls By Lord Kelvin Thomson in 1865

It is a long way from Skype, but it was an Irishman who had been knighted for his work in setting the Atlantic Telegraph Cable in 1865. Lord Kelvin Thomson supported to lay of the cable that stretched from Newfoundland to Valentia in County Kerry.

He had a very keen interest in measuring temperature and thermodynamics, which resulted in the scale of temperature, “The Kelvin Scale.”

9. Tattoo Machines By Samuel O’Reilly in 1875

The modern tattoo machine was founded by an Irishman in New York in 1891. Not much is information about Samuel O’Reilly’s early life, but in 1875 he had gain fame as a tattoo artist with his store Chatham Square at number 11. His cousin, Tom O’Reilly, was also a popular tattoo designer while future stars like Charles Wagner also studied at his studio. His rotary tattoo device was the first to run off power and was based on exactly the same technology used by the autographic printing pen of Thomas Edison. The fundamental mechanisms of tattoo machines these days are still mostly the same as O’Reilly’s original.

10. The Guided Torpedo By Louis Brennan in 1877

Can you believe that the world’s first guided-missile started from Castlebar? Louis Brennan, a smart engineer from Castlebar, built a directable torpedo controlled by manual wires. The first design of the torpedo was created when Brennan was 25. He got funding from the British Navy. In 1887, a government factory started producing “Brennan’s” in Kent. The “Brennan” goes on to be utilized as a defense mechanism by the British Coastal Defence Forces before the early 20th century. But so far as is known, it was never fired in anger.

11. The Submarine By John Philip Holland in 1878

It was a revolutionary from Liscannor, Co. Clare, who entirely transformed the way war could be administered at sea, in addition to deep-sea exploration. Holland, a college teacher, emigrated to Boston in 1872. His first prototype sank its launching. But, in 1881, Holland launched the Fenian Ram’, financed by the Fenian Brotherhood. It proved to be a success. In the following years, Holland won three contests run by the US Naval Department to design and build submarines. Although, political factors meant that this was an unsuccessful enterprise.

Finally, after successful trials, the US Navy bought the Holland VII’, its first submarine, and purchased six more. The submarine was now must-have naval warfare.

12. The Cream Cracker By Robert & William Jacob in 1885

The cream cracker was produced by a Waterford group in the 1800s. In 1885, the Jacob Family made this biscuit from yeast dough, which was left to ferment 24 hours. It had been flattened and then folded several times to make a layered cookie. Jacob’s Cream Crackers, which are a family favorite since their origin, are now made by machines that could create about one million crackers per hour. They’re also available to purchase in over 35 countries globally.

13. Colour photography By John Joly in 1894

Modern-day cameramen owe a debt of honor to a person from the Irish Midlands. John Joly was born around the Bracknagh village in Co. Offaly and has been an engineering graduate from Trinity College. In 1894, Joly devised a color photography system based on shooting viewing plates with many narrow lines in three colors. Joly would mark the screening plate with thin colored lines and then set the glass at the camera in the image’s front; the photo could then be obtained. This process was much easier than anything that had come before. It’s now widely accepted that he had been responsible for the first practical system of color photography.

14. The Tank By Walter Gordon in 1911.

By Blackrock, Dublin, in 1911, came the first armored tank in the world. When Winston Churchill, then Home Secretary in Britain, commissioned the design of a car “capable of combating bullets and shrapnel, flattening barbed wire, crossing trenches, and hastening the sand of no-man’s property,” this is exactly what our Dublin boy came up with.

The World Wars could have been quite different without his creation. Though modern tanks may look entirely different from his first designs, the essential “battle buggy” stays precisely the same.

15. The Modern Tractor by Harry Ferguson in 1926

“The Mad Mechanic” Harry Ferguson invented the first Ferguson System of tractors. It was registered by the mad inventor in 1926 and is the exact same basic design for a modern tractor used today.

This County Down loony also devised his own bike, race car, and Airplane, and in 1909, he was the first Irishman to fly. Initially a bicycle repairman, he built himself the first-ever four-wheeled Formula-One automobile. His name lives on in the Massey Ferguson business.

16. The Ejector Seat By Sir James Martin in 1946

James Bond followers might be surprised to learn that the inventor of this Contemporary ejector seat was an Irishman. While there were earlier incarnations of ejector seats, Martin’s invention enabled pilots to eject from airplanes that traveled at high speeds. In July 1946, the first live test of Martin’s ejector seat happened. The test proved to be a victory when an eruption blew away the pilot’s cockpit, and another explosion propelled the pilot from the plane that allowed him to parachute to safety. Because of this, the RAF approved Martin’s idea, and within 12 months, the whole RAF fleet was fitted with ejector seats. It’s thought that Martin’s invention saved over 5,000 lives by the time of his passing in 1981.

17. Flavoured Potato Crisps By Joseph ‘Spud’ Murphy in 1954

Fortunately for us, Joseph ‘Spud’ Murphy had a huge distaste for plain crisps. It was the 1950s that saw the coming of the flavored potato crisp. Murphy, the owner of Tayto, developed a cheese and onion flavored crisp in 1954, which would prove to be a victory, both at home and overseas. By the 1960s,’ Spud’ had become a millionaire and described by Sean Lemass as the top of Irish entrepreneurial vision. Gratefully, we have producers experimenting with tastes, something which we’ve ‘Spud’ Murphy to thank you for.

18. A Remedy For Leprosy By Vincent Barry

This one we are especially thankful for. It was an Irish guy who accidentally found a cure for leprosy while he was searching for an answer to Ireland’s tuberculosis issue. What a lucky mistake.

Vincent Barry made this casual and miraculous discovery, together with the Catchy name of chemical B663 (Clofazimine). This compound goes on to heal 15 million people of the devastating disease.

19. Wi-Fi, by John O’Sullivan

Although not directly associated with Ireland, the man credited with inventing Wi-Fi was an Irish-Australian named John O’Sullivan. Found entirely by accident, wireless internet was a by-product of a CSIRO research project — in other words, a failed experiment to discover exploding miniature black holes the size of a nuclear particle’. Twenty years later, its existence is everywhere, keeping us always connected to each other — a far cry from the black holes and atomic particles it was initially intended for!

20. Rubber Soles, By Humphrey O’Sullivan

A young guy from Skibbereen in County Cork, the name Humphrey O’Sullivan is attributed with inventing rubber soles for shoes. Humphrey migrated to New York, where he worked as a printer. His job entailed standing on hard rock flooring for long hours, so to ease his aching toes, he purchased a rubber mat to stand on. When his fellow workers kept stealing his mat, he cut some heel shaped bits and nailed them to his shoes. He found them to be surprisingly comfy, and the pain in his toes almost disappeared, so he started making them full time and selling them to local shoemakers, finally patenting the idea.

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