Wheels and axles, screws, pulleys, inclined planes, levers and wedges. Simple machines have been in use for millenia. Over time, many famous people have been involved in their discovery, describing how they work, and developing them into more complicated machines that still help us get the job done. Who were some of these people?
Archimedes was one of the first to document the properties of some of the simple machines. Famous in the field of mathematics, he is considered the inventor of the Archimedes screw. He also did work on the mathematical properties of levers and pulleys.
Who were others famous for experimenting with simple machines? During the Renaissance, scientists and inventors really came into their own. Using and combining simple machines in new and exciting ways was a trio of men from Italy: Leonardo da Vinci, Filippo Brunelleschi, and Galileo Galilei.
Leonardo was an artist, inventor, engineer who designed many machines that used or made simple machines. Brunelleschi is best known for designing and building the Duomo in Florence, Italy as well as the tools needed to move the building materials up to the dome. Galileo is known for his many scientific discoveries, including the use of inclined planes to determine mathematically the properties of gravity and speed.
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