James Watt was a Scottish inventor most famous for his improvements to the steam engine. His innovations helped drastically increase power production, giving rise to the Industrial Revolution and mass mechanization. The scientific unit for power the watt is named after him. His patents include an early steam locomotive.
Inspiration for Improvements
While repairing an early Newcomen steam engine, Watt was alarmed by its waste of steam. After nearly a year of tinkering, he had a sudden realization: If he could recapture the latent heat lost while the liquid changed states into steam, he could make the engine more efficient. His solution was a condenser, a chamber which captured the steam and converted it back into water.