Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,396 pages of information and 233,863 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Benoit Fourneyron

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1832 Fourneyron turbine at the Musee des Arts et Metiers
1844 model of 1832 Fourneyron turbine at the Musee des Arts et Metiers
Detail of 1844 model - guide vane adjusting gear
1844 model - guide vanes

Benoît Fourneyron (October 31, 1802 – July 31, 1867) was a French engineer, born in Saint-Étienne, Loire. Influenced by Claude Burdin, Fourneyron made significant contributions to the development of water turbines.

In 1827 he built his first working example of a new type of waterwheel - a turbine. It had a horizontal wheel on a vertical shaft, having two sets of blades, curved in opposite directions. It was compact, efficient, and could utilise water at high pressure.

For more information, see Wikipedia.

See also here.

An 1832 Fourneyron turbine and a 1/5 scale model of an 1832 Fourneyron turbine, made in 1844 by Eugène Philippe, are on display at the Musee des Arts et Metiers. See photos.

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