John Birkinshaw

John Birkinshaw

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Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. John Birkinshaw was a 19th Century railway engineer from Bedlington, Northumberland noted for his invention of wrought iron rails in 1820. Up to this point, rail systems had used either wooden rails, which were totally incapable of supporting steam engines, or cast iron rails typically only 3 feet in length. These cast iron rails, developed by William Jessop and others, only allowed very low speeds and broke easily and although steam locomotives had been tested as early as 1804 by Richard Trevithick, these experiments had not been economically successful as the rails frequently broke. "John Birkinshaw's 1820 patent for rolling wrought-iron rails in 15ft lengths was a vital breakthrough for the infant railway system. Wrought iron was able to withstand the moving load of a locomotive and train unlike cast iron, used for rails until then, which was brittle and fractured all too easily."show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 120 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 7mm | 186g
  • Chromo Publishing
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 6135738771
  • 9786135738773