Saturday, July 28, 2012

Agapito Flores



Story



[Taken from a Book:]

Agapito Flores: Filipino Inventor
by Nila B. Cay


Edison died leaving the electric bulb, among other things, to light the world. But the light was a warm yellow glow and to produce a white light, a consumer had to buy a high-watt bulb and use more electricity.

This set a poor man from Tondo thinking. He thought of devising another bulb that could produce a bright light that was easy on the eyes and on the pocket. He brought a tube-like bulb to show his president. President Manuel L. Quezon listened to him and examined his invention. The man plugged it on, and it radiated a blush-white light that was cool to the eyes but as bright as day.

President Quezon was impressed and more was his guest who an official from the French government. He had been observing the demonstration all along. He sent the electrician to Paris where he was given a patent. Nobody could imitate his invention without the Filipino inventor's permission.

The General Electric company in the United States heard of this. It lost no time buying the poor man's invention. It reproduced the bulb in millions and sold them all over the world. This is the popular fluorescent bulb which gives off a bright light with minimum electric consumption.

That man was Agapito Flores, the thrifty, industrious, inventive man from Tondo who knew what he wanted and, undeterred, got it.

--- Reading Journey 5




About



First, let's talk about the life of Agapito Flores:

Agapito Flores was born in Guiguinto, Bulacan, Philippines on September 28, 1897. Because of poverty, he did not finish his high school. He worked as an apprentice in a machine shop, and later moved to Tondo, Manila. He took an Electric Course from a vocational school. After a couple of months, he applied for a job.

He conducted experiments about light and its common uses, typically at night. He wanted to discover a type of light that shines like the sun.

It has been reported that Agapito Flores received a French patent for a fluorescent bulb and that the General Electric Company bought Flores' patent rights and manufactured and sold his fluorescent bulb (making millions from it).

Agapito Flores died on 1943.

The above story is real - it did happened, but the main case why I enlisted him here is the story that he invented the fluorescent light which is not true. Below are the more predate inventors of the fluorescent light.

  • In 1857, the French physicist Alexandre E. Becquerel who had investigated the phenomena of fluorescence and phosphorescence, theorized about the building of fluorescent tubes similar to those made today.


  • American, Peter Cooper Hewitt (1861-1921) patented (U.S. patent 889,692) the first mercury vapor lamp in 1901. The low pressure mercury arc lamp of Peter Cooper Hewitt is the very first prototype of today's modern fluorescent lights.


  • Edmund Germer (1901 - 1987) who invented a high pressure vapor lamp, also invented an improved fluorescent lamp. In 1927, Edmund Germer co-patented an experimental fluorescent lamp with Friedrich Meyer and Hans Spanner.


  • Source:
    Lilia B. Fontanilla. Values Education Living a Valuable Life. St. Augustine Publication, Inc. 2005
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/45201549/Agapito-Flores
    http://inventors.about.com/od/filipinoscientists/a/Agapito_Flores.htm

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