Willis Carrier (1876-1950)

Willis Carrier (1876-1950), American mechanical engineer, best known for developing modern air-conditioning. Born in Angola, New York, Carrier was raised on a farm and attended local schools. He earned a scholarship to Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and graduated with an engineering degree in 1901.

In 1902 Carrier began working for the Buffalo

In 1902 Carrier began working for the Buffalo Forge Company, where he designed a humidity-control machine for a printing plant. Print shops were in great need of this type of air control because it prevented paper shrinkage and ensured uniform operation in various printing processes.

Carrier`s machine had a cooling element

Carrier`s machine had a cooling element to condense water vapor from the air. He observed that air blown over this element not only came out drier but also cooler. He then began developing air-control machines that cooled air even more. His paper "Rational Psychrometric Formulae", published in an engineering journal in 1911, outlined the basic scientific theories for a complete modern air-conditioning system. For his pioneering work Carrier became known as the Father of Air-Conditioning, and he eventually held more than 80 patents for modern air-conditioning systems. The Carrier Corporation, which he formed in 1915, dominated air-conditioner manufacturing well into the 1940s.

Air-conditioning systems are now used to

Air-conditioning systems are now used to achieve temperature and humidity control in homes, offices, theaters, institutions, factories, airplanes, and automobiles. As designed by Carrier, air conditioners cool by blowing the air through a coil of tubing that contains a cold fluid. The fluid today is most often a special chemical that, like those used in refrigeration, can draw off and vent heat. Such air-conditioning systems have allowed people to live more comfortably in many locations, and they have become critical to many work and technical processes. "See also "Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning.

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