image buffon g_histoire naturelle_nouvelle_1799_v5_plate 15
Image number: RS.13562
Credit: ©The Royal Society

Burning glass

Date

1799

Creator

Unknown, Engraver

Object type

Material

Technique

Dimensions

height (print): 206mm
width (print): 132mm

Subject

Content object

Description

Study of the operation of a circular burning glass, or Archimedes’ mirror, constructed with a stepped lens. The lens is shown focussing sunlight to start a fire.

Plate 15 from the book Histoire naturelle, généralle et particuliére…Nouvelle edition, by Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon and C.S. Sonnini, volume 5 (Paris 1799).

Inscribed above: ‘Planche XV.’

The accompanying text describes the mechanism, sometimes known as a Fresnal lens, after its later development for lighthouse applications by the French civil engineer Augustin-Jean Fresnel (1788-1827).

Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (1707-1788), French naturalist and man of science, was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1740.

Charles-Nicolas-Sigisbert Sonnini de Manoncourt (1751-1812), French naturalist.

Associated place

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