Museo Galileo
Virtual Museum
Portable globe electrical machine
    • Setting:
      Room XI
    • Maker:
    • Date:
      late 18th cent.
    • Materials:
      mahogany, brass, glass
    • Dimensions:
      total height 650 mm, base 469x125 mm, globe 230 mm
    • Inventory:
    • Portable globe electrical machine (Inv. 516)

Common English design of frictional electrical machine with globe and brass box for the gear mechanism and rackwork. The cushion arrangement, however, is unusual and may be due to a slightly later alteration made in the Museo di Fisica e Storia Naturale workshop. The machine is secured to the mahogany base between two glass uprights supporting a wooden cross-piece. Two leather cushions rub the glass at opposite sides. Both are supported by a flexible brass strip. The separate prime conductor, supported on a glass stand, consists of a long brass cylinder with a flattened knob at each end. The charge is transmitted by means of three sharp collecting points (stand and points are modern replacements). Provenance: Lorraine collections.