Battery, known as Cruickshanks battery

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made in England

Postcard of Battery, known as Cruickshanks battery.
© National Museums Scotland

Battery, known as Cruickshanks battery

This battery, known as 'Cruickshank's battery' was made in England around 1900.

The battery has bimetallic plates of copper soldered to zinc, which were cemented into a wooden box. This meant that the battery could be filled with a weak acid solution for use and then emptied afterwards. In this example two cell partitions have been removed to show the bimetallic construction.

Current electricity is produced when two metals are combined with moisture. Many attempts were made during the 19th century to produce an electric battery that was compact, durable and safe.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-190-004-728-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  T.1902.49.76
Date: Around 1900
c. 1900
What: Battery, Cruickshank's / voltaic pile
Subject: 22. PHYSICS, Magnetism and Electricity (Departmental Classification)
Where: England
Description: Cruickshank's battery, English, c. 1900
  • A.P. Deschanel, Elementary Treatise on Natural Philosophy, London, 1872, p. 647. 
  • For an overview of current electricity, see G.L'E. Turner, Nineteenth Century Scientific Instruments. London, 1983, esp. ch. 11, 'Electricity', pp 198-202.. 
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