Electric Lighting


IN the Proceedings of the Philosophical Society of Manchester Mr. Wilde has described a new electric lamp, in which the carbons are placed parallel to each other, as in a Jablochkoff candle, but without any insulating material. It may not be apparent to all why the are always locates itself at the extremity of the pair of carbons, and this, as Mr. Wilde observes, whether the lamp be erect or inverted. The explanation is that the current in each carbon repels the electric arc exactly as the current in the mercury-troughs repels the connecting cross-wire in a well-known experiment of Ampère. In Wilde's candle we have two fixed conductors, the carbons, and a movable conductor, the arc. Since the current in the are and the current in either carbon are one from the other towards the point of junction of that carbon with the arc, the arc must be repelled by the carbon. One cannot but be surprised that Ampère's experiment did not suggest the discovery made by Mr. Wilde, that the insulating material might with advantage be omitted in Jablochkoff's candle.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Author information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.