- Description (Brief)
- This object is a Graham coil condenser made from Pyrex glass. A Graham condenser is used to cool and condense a gas back to a liquid, often as part of the process of chemical distillation. The piece consists of a coiled glass tube through which the gas travels. The coil is surrounded by a jacket of water that helps to cool the gas.
- Pyrex has its origins in the early 1910s, when American glass company Corning Glass Works began looking for new products to feature its borosilicate glass, Nonex. At the suggestion of Bessie Littleton, a Corning scientist’s wife, the company began investigating Nonex for bakeware. After removing lead from Nonex to make the glass safe for cooking, they named the new formula “Pyrex”—“Py” for the pie plate, the first Pyrex product. In 1916 Pyrex found another market in the laboratory. It quickly became a favorite brand in the scientific community for its strength against chemicals, thermal shock, and mechanical stress.
- Dyer, Davis. The Generations of Corning: The Life and Times of a Global Corporation. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.
- Jensen, William B. “The Origin of Pyrex.” Journal of Chemical Education 83, no. 5 (2006): 692. doi:10.1021/ed083p692.
- Kraissl, F. “A History of the Chemical Apparatus Industry.” Journal of Chemical Education 10, no. 9 (1933): 519. doi:10.1021/ed010p519.
- Currently not on view
- Object Name
- condenser, graham, coil type
- Object Type
- Physical Separation Apparatus
- date made
- Corning Incorporated
- Physical Description
- glass (overall material)
- overall: 46.3 cm; 18 1/4 in
- overall: 18 in x 3 1/2 in x 2 in; 45.72 cm x 8.89 cm x 5.08 cm
- ID Number
- catalog number
- accession number
- Science & Scientific Instruments
- Data Source
- National Museum of American History
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