1800 – voltaic pile (battery)

A voltaic pile is a group of galvanic cells that are joined together as a circuit in series, forming an electric battery. While it is possible that primitive batteries were in use for several thousand years prior, Alessandro Volta, assembled the first well documented working battery. Volta was following up on Luigi Galvani’s famous experiment that made frog legs twitch. Galvani attributed this to “animal electricity”, an innate biological force found in living organisms. Volta realized that the source of the electricity was the metals and in follow up experiments developed the concept of the voltaic pile.

PRECURSOR:
1746 – Leyden jar
1780 – animal electricity – Galvani

SUCCESSOR:
1806 – “On Some Chemical Agencies of Electricity” – Davy
1820 – current in a wire creates magnetic field – Oersted
1820 – electricity and magnetism are linked – Ampere
1834 – “On the Electricity of the Voltaic Pile” – Faraday

SEE ALSO:
Timeline of Electromagnetism

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