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1698 English military engineer Thomas Savery uses Papin’s ‘Digester’ as the basis of a crude steam engine for pumping water out of flooded mine-shafts.

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Unfortunately it also frightens horses and kindles considerable public hostility.

Timeline of motoring history 1679 - 1939 1679 Practical French scientist Denis Papin invents the pressure-cooker or ‘digester’.

1690 Many before him have experimented with single charges of gunpowder as a means of moving a piston in a bore but, Denis Papin publishes his ideas for harnessing steam as an alternative, to achieve repeated cycles of movement.

It runs on hot air and rotation is caused by heat differentials as it passes between various parts of the engine.

It can use a number of alternative fuels to heat the air and, in spite of its improved safety and superior efficiency, it remains largely ignored for use in vehicles.

1866 In Germany Nikolaus August Otto patents a "free-piston" atmospheric engine. Otto & Cie to produce the ‘free-piston’ engine.

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