History, Aims and Objectives

Newcomen is named after Thomas Newcomen who invented the first practical working steam engine in 1712. This invention led to the great industrial and technological achievements of the modern age.

Newcomen exists to encourage study of the history of engineering and technology from ancient times to the present day.

It disseminates historical information by publications, meetings, correspondence and internet forums. It also arranges site visits.

For nearly a century it has been publishing scholarly papers on an extensive and international range of subjects including:

  • Civil, mechanical, structural, chemical, aeronautical, electrical and marine engineering
  • Inland navigation, railways, roads, bridges
  • Water supply, dock & harbour engineering, lighthouses
  • Mills and millwork
  • Stationary engines, locomotives, turbines, piston engines, steam, oil, petroleum and gas engines
  • Metallurgy, manufacturing and industrial plant, textile machinery
  • Computer engineering
  • Gas and electric lighting,  heating and ventilation, sewage and drainage, public health engineering

Newcomen also supports the collection and preservation of archival material and historical artefacts.

  • Forthcoming Events

    Mar
    30
    Thu
    2017
    11:00 am Visit to National Museum Wales C... @ NANTGARW, National Museum Wales Collections Centre
    Visit to National Museum Wales C... @ NANTGARW, National Museum Wales Collections Centre
    Mar 30 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
    There are still a few places available on our 30 March 2017 visit to South Wales. The plan is that we meet at 11am the National Museum Wales Collections Centre, Nantgarw, where the staff will[...]
    Apr
    5
    Wed
    2017
    7:00 pm The Thames Tunnel @ BIRMINGHAM: Thinktank, Birmingham Science Museum
    The Thames Tunnel @ BIRMINGHAM: Thinktank, Birmingham Science Museum
    Apr 5 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    A lecture by Julia Elton: The Thames Tunnel
    Apr
    12
    Wed
    2017
    5:45 pm Frank Hornby & Mechanical Toys –... @ LONDON: The Dana Centre,
    Frank Hornby & Mechanical Toys –... @ LONDON: The Dana Centre,
    Apr 12 @ 5:45 pm – 7:45 pm
    A lecture by Deborah Jaffé. The entrepreneurial Frank Hornby was the inventor of Meccano, The Hornby Railway and Dinky Cars. This lecture looks at the origins of his designs, the manufacturing processes involved,  the images of[...]
    Apr
    19
    Wed
    2017
    6:00 pm ICI Billingham and Steam Reformi... @ NEWCASTLE: Tyne&Wear Discovery Museum
    ICI Billingham and Steam Reformi... @ NEWCASTLE: Tyne&Wear Discovery Museum
    Apr 19 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
    A lecture by Dr Fred Starr FIMMM, C.Eng. It will surprise anyone younger than middle aged, that British Gas, in the 1950s seemed doomed, almost deservedly so. The world’s oldest energy conversion company, it was[...]
    Apr
    20
    Thu
    2017
    7:30 pm R101 Disaster and the Broken Ele... @ BRISTOL BAWA
    R101 Disaster and the Broken Ele... @ BRISTOL BAWA
    Apr 20 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
    A lecture by Bryan Lawton: R101 Disaster and the Broken Elevator Cable
    Apr
    24
    Mon
    2017
    6:30 pm Stealth – its history and techno... @ SHEFFIELD: Kelham Island Museum
    Stealth – its history and techno... @ SHEFFIELD: Kelham Island Museum
    Apr 24 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
    A lecture by Professor Barry Chambers:  Stealth – its history and technology.  For directions to Kelham Island Museum please visit:- http://www.simt.co.uk/find-us
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