Category Archives: Gasometer

Gasometer, 1829


Hutchinson’s spirometer was based on the gasometer, a common device used by scientists, chemists and glassblowers.  From Brande, William Thomas, and William James MacNeven. “A manual of chemistry; containing the principal facts of the science arranged in the order in which they are discussed and illustrated in the lectures at the Royal Institution of Great Britain. With plates.” New York, 1829,page 68.

Sir Humphry Davy’s Mercury Air Holder, 1800


Fronticepiece for Humphry Davy’s “Researches, Chemical and Philosophical”, published in 1800.  A mercury-seal gasometer that predates Hutchinson’s spirometer by over 40 years.  The counterweight is attached to a cam that varies the force over the range of motion of the bell.  This device was used as an air holder, not as a measuring device since the only scale for volume was a uncalibrated dial on the cam.  Found on