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Showing posts with label Invention. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Invention. Show all posts

The Fire Piston and It's Origin in Europe

Fire Piston

European Version of Fire Piston. image:

In previous accounts of the ingenious fire-making device usually known as the fire piston, anthropologists and historians of technology alike have paid special attention to those specimens of the instrument which have been found in use in the countries in Southeast Asia over the last hundred years. Intriguing possibility that the device was invented in that region quite independently of European influences and possible long before 8960’s when it appears to have been first observed there by European travelers.

Fire piston was invented in the areasof  "Dipag" and Sembuangan now Dipolog City in the modern Zamboanga del Norte, island of Mindanao, the Philippines over 1,500 years ago by a Subanen tribe teenager named “Anlangan”. Read more here

Fire Piston / Luthang gapuyan

Primitive / Original Asian version of Fire Piston - image:

Consequently they have tended to regard the fire piston’s appearance in Europe in the early years of the nineteenth century as the result either of a separate, thought rather less interesting, process of invention in the West or alternatively, of direct importation from those parts of Asia particularly from the Philippines where the device was already commonly used. Although such accounts have been valuable, if only in preserving the fire piston from neglect, they have conveyed a view of the instrument’s history which is not only incomplete (by virtue of their scant treatment of the European version of the instrument) but which is also supported by inadequate evidence on certain important points. – Robert Fox

Dr. Robert Fox, lecturer in the history of Science at the university of Lancaster, is the authoer of forthcoming book on the caloric theory of gases.

Read other source: Facebook Videos

Chemistry and Science Explanation of Luthang Gapuyan or Fire Piston


Fire piston was invented in "Dipag" now Dipolog City in the modern Zamboanga del Norte, island of Mindanao, the Philippines over 1,500 years ago by a Subanen tribe teenager named “Anlangan”.

Scientific Explanation of Fire Piston


Problem 2: What is the number that goes into C3?

Problem 3: What is the weight of air in the 16 liter tank (N2)?

Problem 4: What is the formula that goes into N2?

Problem 5: If you wanted to figure the total weight of the tank at 3500 psi, what cell do you change?

Problem 6: If the temperature was 92°F instead of 77°F, what would the new formula in I3 become?

Problem 7: What cells need to be updated to do that?

Problem 8: What is the final pressure in mm of mercury (mm of Hg)?

Problem 9: What is the formula that goes in L2?

Problem 10: What would be the final pressure if the end volume was 0.7mL?

Problem 11: What is the pressure now after some of the cotton burns (L2)?

Problem 12: What is the pressure of L2 in atmospheres?

The volume of the air in the fire piston cylinder starts at 10.0 mL and then is squeezed to 1.0 mL. The temperature started as 25°C (room temp) and ended up at 600.°C. The pressure before being squeezed was 740mm of mercury (Note 760mm Hg is 1 atmosphere). We want the final pressure. If temperature had remained the same, this would be easy. The volume went down to 1/10 its original size, which would make the pressure be 10 times larger (740mm x 10=7,400mm mercury). However, the temperature changed, so it's more complicated. We can start with PV=nRT; however, there are two conditions. One at the beginning and one at the end. So we need two PV=nRT formulas. Let P1V1=n1RT1 be the values before it was compressed. Then P2V2=n2RT2 would be the values after compression and becoming hot. Since R is constant, it is the same in both equations. We can exploit that fact. Let's solve both equations for R. In the first R=P1V1/n1T1, and the second is R=P2V2/n2T2. Since both are equal to R, they are equal to each other. So, P1V1/n1T1=P2V2/n2T2. Since the moles of the gas didn't change, n1=n2, we can multiply both sides by n1, which would cancel out both n1 and n2. Our equation now reads:


We know all of these values except for P2 (final pressure). So lets solve for P2 by dividing both sides by V2 and multiplying both sides by T2. We now get

P1V1T2/(T1V2)=P2, which can also be written as P1x V1x T2 /T1 /V2=P2. This looks like a good job for a spreadsheet. Since there's no R in the formula, we don't need pressure measured in atmospheres or volume in liters, but we do have to use Kelvin. So 273 gets added to the Celsius degrees.

The pressure in the fire piston will go up at the point the tender attached to the bottom of the pistion catches fire. (I used a piece from a cotton ball in my fire piston). When the cotton burns, it will consume the oxygen but will produce carbon dioxide and water vapor and higher temperatures. So the pressure should go up due to more gases and higher temperature.

Cotton is cellulose, which has the formula of

(C6H12O5)n. The "n" means it is a long chain of these glucose molecules. But we can treat it like it was burning C6H12O5. Here's the balanced equation.

2C6H12O5+13O2 --> 12CO2 + 12H2O

We can't ignore the nitrogen gas, which is 5 times the number of oxygen molecules (5 x 13=65). So we can add that to the reaction.

2C6H12O5 +13O2 + 65N2--> 12CO2 + 12H2O + 65N2

Looking at this we see that we start with 78 moles (12+65) of gases and end with 84 moles (12+12+65) of gases. Also, the burning will increase the temperature. The yellow flame indicates a temperature around 3,000 Kelvin.

This problem is similar to the last one but the intitial conditions are the final conditions in the above problem.

That was P2V2=n2RT2

After the flame heats up the air and creates the extra gases, the condition is different. Let's use P3V3=n3RT3 for the new final condition.

Like before we can solve for R on both and set them equal to each other. This looks like the last time we did it:


This time the moles are changing, but the volume is the same. So we need to keep the moles (n2 and n3) but we can drop the volumes. That simplifies it to:


Solving for the final pressure (P3) by multiplying both sides by n3 and T3 gives us:

P2n3T3/n2T2 = P3

Even though we don't know the exact number of moles, we do know the ratio of moles, which works fine when you have one divided by the other. So the 78 moles for n2 and the 85 moles for n3 that we got from the balanced equation works fine.

We can check the units to see if they cancel and we can check the logic. In the above spreadsheet we see that we have 85 moles over 78 moles. So that's 85/78, which will make the pressure larger as expected. We see the temperature ratio of 3000 over 873 or 3000/873, which will also make the pressure larger. So these fractions are doing what we expect should happen to the pressure which is to become larger when there's more moles and higher temperatures. Read more at Chemistry land

The First Discovery of "Luthang Gapuyan" ( Fire Piston ) and its history over 1500 years ago

Fire Piston luthang gapuyan

Anlangan 17 years old boy accidentally invented the first "Fire Piston" locally named “Luthang Gapuyan” over 1500 years ago

The history of the “luthang gapuyan” or fire piston was not known by many but used by thousands. 

The discovery of luthang gapuyan or fire piston and significant invention in the world history was purely accidental.

Fire piston was accidentally discovered and invented in Semboangan Island in '"Dipag" to be particular  now Dipolog City in the modern Zamboanga del Norte, island of Mindanao, the Philippines over 1,500 years ago by a Subanen tribe teenager named “Anlangan” according to the generation to generation story.

Anlangan a 17 year old Subanen boy was described as curious, funny and playful boy who was fun of making a bamboo toy magazine and accidentally discovered a fire created from his invention when making a hardwood as replacement of a bamboo materials. According to a tale passed from generations to generation, it was one afternoon when Anlangan was given tasked by his parents to burn the portion of the mountain for their new kaingin (slashed and burn) in preparation of the coming Panuig or planting season. Anlangan was on his way when the rain suddenly fall so he returned home and decided to just stay under their house playing his “luthang” or bamboo magazine with his younger brother while waiting for the rain to stop. His bamboo magazine's barrel  exploded was broken so he became curious of making another 1 out of the hard wood to prevent from breaking. 

He was using a hard wood in making a barrel for his planned wooden toy magazine and bored it to form a barrel. Before the hole reached to the other end, he was using another hard wooden stick in polishing the inner part of the hole. While polishing the inner hole using the other hardwood, he just realized after pushing in then pushing out, a smoke came out and formed a fire. 

So instead of making luthang, out of the hard wood he then carved the wood into smaller toy and tied it with a rope made of abaca then wore it and informed his father about his invention then his family was the first creation in the world who used the luthang gapuyan or fire piston for their kaingin or slash and burn farming.

Luthang gapuyan then become a common toy for the subanen tribes and used as product for trading with the visiting traders from Cebu, Sulu and the invention spread all over the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia to Europe.

Fire piston luthang gapuyan

A southeast Asian native old woman is using Luthang Gapuyan (Fire piston)