1521 – Taqi al-Din

Born in Damascus, Syria in 1521, Taqi al-Din was an all around scientist, exelling at astronomy, mathematics, physics, medicine, botany, and a wide variety of engineering applications. He was also a judge and religious philospher. He described a steam turbine engine in a book called, “The Sublime Methods of Spiritual Machines” in 1551.

He invented a variety of clocks, including the first mechanical alarm clock, the first astronomical clock powered by springs, and the first pocket watch that measured minutes.

He described a six-cylinder pump for raising water that used a vacuum to suck water through a valve. It used crankshaft cams and connecting rods likely copied from al-Jazaris twin cylinder reciprocating action pump developed earlier.



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