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Handbook of Energy by Christopher G. Morris, Cutler J. Cleveland

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Section 27

Conversion

The subject area Conversion deals with notable efforts to convert energy from one form to a different one. Since so many of the entries in this overall Chronology describe energy conversion in some fashion or another, and thus could in theory be included here, this section is limited to early or especially significant developments.

The first effort to move beyond the limitations of human power was the use of animals to perform useful work, especially those animals able to provide greater power than humans such as the ox and the horse. This is thought to have begun about 6000 B.C. Next came the use of the power of falling water, believed to have been first utilized by the Greeks in about 2000 B.C. By about the year 1000 waterwheels ...

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