Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit is most well-known for the invention of the widely used in the USA temperature scale. Not everyone knows that this man, who was a talented scientist and physician, invented a number of tools that are used in society nowadays.
We gathered 8 facts about Fahrenheit that we believe will be interesting to our readers. Let’s read about them…
Daniel G. Fahrenheit: 8 interesting facts about the inventor of the Fahrenheit temperature scale
1. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit was born in a wealthy family
Unlike many scientists and inventors who achieved great success in life, Daniel Fahrenheit came from a rich merchant family, an interesting fact about Daniel Fahrenheit. He was born in May 1686. After his father Daniel Fahrenheit married Concordia Schumann, the daughter of a well-known businessman, the family lived in Danzig (now Gdansk) for some time.
2. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit’s family travelled a lot
After Fahrenheit was born, the family moved several times. The family lived for quite some time in a number of Hanseatic cities.
During his lifetime, Fahrenheit travelled alone a lot. He visited Berlin, Leipzig, Halle, Dresden and Copenhagen. He lived for some time in England and even managed to become a member of the Royal Society there.
The majority of his life he spent in the Dutch Republic (The Hague).
3. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit had 4 siblings
Fahrenheit had 2 sisters and 2 brothers. He was the oldest of the siblings who survived childhood.
4. The parents of Daniel Gabriel died on the same day
Fahrenheit lost his parents when he was 15 years old. Daniel and Concordia Fahrenheit died after eating poisonous mushrooms, a sad fact about Daniel Fahrenheit.
5. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit worked in many spheres
After the death of his parents, Fahrenheit moved to Amsterdam. He was offered a job as a shopkeeper and went on studying the art of trading for some time. However, his love for natural sciences was bigger than his interest in trading. He turned to physics and started to actively experimenting and researching. He also managed to establish himself as a skillful glassblower and tool inventor.
6. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit determined and discovered new facts about the boiling point of water and other liquids
The experiments carried out by Fahrenheit allowed him to conclude that the boiling point of water can vary depending on the changes in the atmospheric pressure, an important fact about Daniel Fahrenheit.
Fahrenheit was the one who discovered the so-called phenomenon of the supercooling water. The phenomenon implies that water can be cooled down below its freezing point without being turned into ice.
These discoveries led him to doubt the reliability of freezing and boiling points of water. Later, he decided to use the temperature scale ranging from 0 to 212 degrees.
7. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit was a talented toolmaker
Before coming up with the idea of a temperature scale, Fahrenheit was busy inventing thermometers. First two thermometers were invented in 1714. Those were alcohol thermometers. A bit later, Fahrenheit started to study and experiment with mercury. Finally, he made a decision to replace alcohol with mercury.
The thermometers invented by Fahrenheit were the most reliable and highly valued thermometers. The detailed technique for making the thermometers stayed unknown for almost 20 years after the invention of the 1st mercury thermometer.
Fahrenheit also invented a thermobarometer that allows to determine barometric pressure by determining the boiling point of water.
8. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit was the inventor of the temperature scale
The well-known and widely used temperature scale was described by Fahrenheit in one of his articles in 1724. It had three fixed points of temperature. In order to achieve the lowest temperature point (0oF), it was necessary to prepare a mixture of water, ice and salt. After that, it was necessary to wait for the substance to reach an equilibrium temperature. This was the temperature in Danzig during all the winter of 1709.
The second point (F) was assigned after the thermometer was placed in still water on the surface of which ice started to form. The third point (96oF) was assigned after the thermometer was placed under the arm and in the mouth.
Fahrenheit discovered that mercury boils at approximately 300oF. The results of the researches carried out by other scientists showed that water boils at 180 degrees above its freezing point. A need to redefine the Fahrenheit’s scale arose. The idea was to make the interval from freezing to boiling exactly 180 degrees. As a result, the normal body temperature according to the redefined Fahrenheit’s scale is 98.6oF whereas on the original scale it was 96oF, an interesting fact about Daniel Fahrenheit.
The Fahrenheit temperature scale was very popular. Later, the Celsius temperature scale replaced the Fahrenheit’s scale in Europe. However, the scale invented by Fahrenheit is still used in the United States, Belize, the UK and Canada.
We hope that the information provided above will help our readers to learn more about Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, the scientists who played one of the most significant roles in the Golden Age of Dutch science and technology. This man, born in a merchant family, achieved success in many spheres including science, glassblowing and tool making.
Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit died in September 1736. He is buried on the cemetery in the Hague.
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