The oldest scientific experiments still running...
June 6, 2011 6:56 PM Subscribe
The three longest-running scientific experiments
are all located in the foyers of physics buildings. The oldest is the Oxford Electric Bell
, which has been ringing continuously (over ten billion times!) since at least 1840
, powered by batteries of unknown composition. In Dunedin, New Zealand, the Beverley clock
has operated since 1864, without the need for winding, as it is powered by atmospheric changes
. The relative youngster in the group is the Pitch Drop Experiment
, which has been measuring the viscosity of pitch since 1927 by recording the time between drops of pitch from a funnel. The experiments has the world's most boring webcam
, though the eighth, and most recent, drop fell in 2000, so the next is due any day now! Atlas Obscura has some additional candidates
for long experiments, including the Rothemstead Plots
, which have been used in agricultural experiments for 300 years.
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