Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"...science fiction is sort of like a sociological genome. It's a huge range of possible futures, most of them useless; some vital. You never really know in advance."
- Peter Watts

Leyden Ball  
  Device for hunting underwater; transfers a powerful electrical charge to the prey.  

Really the grandfather of the taser.

In this excerpt, Captain Nemo is explaining to his reluctant guest Monsieur Arronax, how it is possible to use a rifle underwater.

"Besides M. Aronnax, you must see yourself that, during our submarine hunt, we can spend but little air and but few balls."

"But it seems to me that in this twilight, and in the midst of this fluid, which is very dense compared with the atmosphere, shots could not go far, nor easily prove mortal."

"Sir, on the contrary, with this gun every blow is mortal; and, however lightly the animal is touched, it falls as if struck by a thunderbolt."

"Why?"

"Because the balls sent by this gun are not ordinary balls, but little cases of glass. These glass cases are covered with a case of steel, and weighted with a pellet of lead; they are real Leyden bottles, into which the electricity is forced to a very high tension. With the slightest shock they are discharged, and the animal, however strong it may be, falls dead. I must tell you that these cases are size number four, and that the charge for an ordinary gun would be ten."

From 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne.
Published by Various in 1875
Additional resources -

The Leyden jar is a cylindrical container made of a dielectric (an insulator, like glass) with a layer of metal foil on the inside and outside. With the outside surface grounded, a charge is applied to the inside surface. This gives the outside an equal but opposite charge. When the outside and inside surfaces are connected by a conductor, the stored electrical energy is discharged. It was the world's first working capacitor.


Decorative mid-19th century Leyden Jars

The Leyden jar was first discovered by Ewald Georg von Kleist, a German inventor. However, Pieter van Musschenbroek of the University of Leyden discovered the Leyden jar independently in 1746 and the name remains. Find out more about the Leyden Jar at Faradnet.

The Leyden jar was used in the first atom smasher, built at Cambridge University. This device used banks of them as condensers and could store up to one million volts.

And, for those of you who long to join Captain Nemo and hunt in the ocean depths, conveniently located just outside your baroque 19th century submarine, you can get close with the Aquarius Underwater Laborator Virtual Tour (requires Ipix plug-in). Or, read more about the Captain Nemo's submarine - the Nautilus.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 2 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
  More Ideas and Technology by Jules Verne
  Tech news articles related to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
  Tech news articles related to works by Jules Verne

Leyden Ball-related news articles:
  - Inertial Capacitive Incapacitor: HomeSec Does Verne
  - Piezer - Homeland Security Orders Verne's 1875 'Leyden Ball'
  - Lynntech Non-Lethal Weapon - Jules Verne Right Again
  - Long Range Stunners - Again
  - TASER XREP Neuro-Muscular Incapacitation

Articles related to Weapon
ZKZM-500 LASER Assault Rifle
Drone Assassin Fails To Kill Venezuelan President
Musk's Boring Flamethrower
Poland Starts With 1000 Warmate 'Suicide Drones'

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

Unfurl The Future! Huawei Mate X versus Galaxy Fold
'A paper thin polycarbon screen unfurled silently from the top of the unit and immediately grew rigid.'

Amazon Echo And Google Home Should Have Morality Software
'The Dwoskin Morality Rating-Computer could 'spot the slightest tendency to deviation' from the social norm...'

China Building Robot Wives
'Want a life-companion, a pleasant one?'

China Social Credit System Like State-Run Whuffie
'At least there was no mandatory Whuffie check on the monorail platform...'

Project Soli Radar Gesture Chip Now FCC Approved
'He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'

Stan, Robot Valet, Will Drag Your Car Away
'He activated the grapple tracks. '

Jibo Home Robot Says Goodbye, Is Killswitched
'It resembles an oyster....'

Johns Hopkins Says Asteroid Deflection Will Be Difficult
'This obelisk is one huge deflector mechanism...'

Fabric Automatically Cools Or Insulates Based On Environment
'...a high-efficiency filter and heat-exchange system.'

Deepfakes From OpenAI GPT-2 Algorithm
'How can you compete with an IBM heavy-duty logomatic analogue?'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.