Air conditioning is the silent technology we all take for granted. It makes homes, businesses, and cars more comfortable and lets people control the temperature. But who invented this essential technology that changed the way we live?
Willis Haviland Carrier: The Father of Air Conditioning
Early Life and Education
Willis Haviland Carrier, often referred to as the father of air conditioning, was born on November 26, 1876, in Angola, New York. Carrier graduated in mechanical engineering from Cornell University in 1901. Shortly after, he started working for the Buffalo Forge Company, a heating equipment manufacturer.
First Breakthrough in Air Conditioning
Carrier’s first significant contribution to air conditioning technology came in 1902 when he was tasked with solving a humidity problem at a printing plant in Brooklyn. The high humidity levels made the inks run and paper expand, resulting in misaligned printing.
Carrier developed a system that used chilled coils to cool and remove moisture from the air, improving the printing process and marking the birth of modern air conditioning.
Founding of Carrier Corporation
In 1915, Carrier founded the Carrier Engineering Corporation, which later became Carrier Corporation, to focus on improving and commercialising air conditioning technology.
Development of Air Conditioning
Before Carrier’s breakthrough, there were various attempts to cool indoor air. Ancient Egyptians and Romans used water-cooled air, while Benjamin Franklin and John Hadley experimented with the evaporation of alcohol and ether to achieve cooling in the 18th century. None of these methods proved to be unsuccessful in temperature and humidity control.
Carrier’s Air Conditioning System
Carrier’s system was a game-changer, as it effectively controlled temperature, humidity, and air circulation. He expanded on his original concept and patented the “Apparatus for Treating Air” in 1906. This invention laid the foundation for modern air conditioning, with subsequent improvements and innovations by Carrier and others.
Expansion and Modernisation
Air conditioning technology advanced rapidly throughout the 20th century, becoming smaller, more efficient, and more affordable. Residential air conditioning gained popularity in the 1950s, and central air conditioning was widespread across office spaces by the 1970s.
Willis Haviland Carrier, the father of air conditioning, revolutionised how we control indoor climates. His new ideas and the improvements in air conditioning technology that came from them have greatly affected society, business, and the environment.
As we look to the future, ActronAir is at the forefront of sustainable air conditioning solutions to help the environment and keep the comfort and efficiency of air conditioning flowing.
ActronAir is an Australian-owned company whose products have been proudly made in Australia since they first opened their doors almost 40 years ago.
With ActronAir ACs, you know you are getting a top-of-the-line product built with care and attention to perform in all Australian environments.