Eudiometer, Europe, 1770-1900

1770-1900 in Europe

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Left hand side: 1984-1261/1, Eudiometer, one of three of different designs, with metal cap and base. Right hand side:
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Eudiometer, one of three of different designs, said to have been used by M. Berthelot

A eudiometer is designed to test the oxygen content of the air and is used today in chemistry. Atmospheric air and hydrogen are exploded over water by an electric spark and the rise in the water in the tube gives an indication to the amount of oxygen present. Eudiometers were taken across Europe by tour organisers looking for the best places for health resorts. Disease was thought to be caused by bad air and foul smells as a result of rotten rubbish, human waste and stagnant water. So clean air was considered essential in treating and preventing illness. The eudiometer is photographed with another one of similar design (1984-1261/1).

On display

Science Museum: Making the Modern World Gallery

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Experimental Chemistry
Object Number:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • measuring device - instrument
On loan from the Wellcome Trust

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