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Text A. James Prescott Joule

James Prescott Joule, famous British physicist, was born in 1818, in England.

Joule was one of the most outstanding physicists of his time. He is best known for his research in electricity and thermodynamics. In the course of his investigations of the heat emitted in an electrical circuit, he formulated the law, now known as Joule's law of electric heating. This law states that the amount of heat produced each second in a conductor by electric current is proportional to the resistance of the conductor and to the square of the current. Joule experimentally verified the law of conservation of energy in his study of the conversion of mechanical energy into heat energy.

Joule determined the numerical relation between heat and mechanical energy, or the mechanical equivalent of heat, using many independent methods. The unit of energy, called the joule, is named after him. It is equal to 1 watt-second. Together with the physicist William Thomson (Baron Kelvin), Joule found that the tempe­rature of a gas falls when it expands without doing any work. This phenomenon, which became known as the Joule-Thomson effect, lies in the operation of modern refrigeration and air-conditioning systems.


In what fields of science did Joule work? What physical law did he formulate? What is Joule-Thomson effect?

Text B. Safety Engineering

This field of engineering has as its object the prevention of accidents. Safety engineers develop methods and procedures to safeguard workers of hazardous occupations. They also assist in designing machinery, factories, ships, and roads, suggesting alterations and improvements to reduce accidents.

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