5000 Awesome FACTS


FACT #2

“ORIGINAL FERRIS WHEELS WERE TURNED BY POWERFUL STEAM ENGINES. MOST MODERN WHEELS RUN ON ELECTRICITY.”

National Geographic Kids, 5,000 Awesome Facts, 2015

I wasn’t quite sure why this was an awesome fact, or how I was going to write about it, so I started with the basics;

The definition of steam.


Definition of Steam: “The vapor into which water is converted when heated, forming a white mist of minute water droplets in the air. Hence, “a cloud of steam.”

Temperature of steam is 212 degrees F; the highest temperature water can hold until it’s molecular structure breaks down, therefore turning it into steam.

The significance of the steam engine, one of the greatest inventions in the Industrial Revolution, I’ve learned, is the ability to turn heat into motion, replacing man muscle, wind and water power for fuel that was able to create factories and mills that would make mass quantities of product like never before, and gave the ability for world trade.

Steam engines were large and extremely powerful, using almost any heat source such as wood, but mainly coal, to bring the temperature up in the vat to produce steam to generate rotation of the Big Wheel.

80% of electricity today is from steam. Power plants have these huge turbines that run off of pressurized boiler steam that produces an electrical current. I didn’t know that.

Basically, to power a ferris wheel with a steam engine is comparable as a portable battery charger, or a fuse box, on a big scale.

A steam engine sitting next to a Ferris Wheel at a County’s Fair would be quite impressive, I can imagine.

That is a pretty awesome fact. I knew next to nothing about steam or steam engines until #2 of FERRIS WHEEL FACTS, 1-15.

I hope this book has a section on steam, because I think I could knock it out of the water.

steam engine
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