The Steam Engine

1515 Words 6 Pages
In the mid 1800’s the steam engine was one of the greatest feats of mechanical engineering that has contributed to modern technology. Before steam power, people relied on horse or man power to do grunt work. Also, factories were limited to certain locations that had water or wind power. The steam engine has made a huge impact on modern technology and was the catalyst for mass production in the United states.
Steam engines were a marvelous piece of engineering during the industrial revolution that changed modern technology. The use of coal was widespread during the 18th and 19th century. Coal is abundant everywhere since it is an organic chemical that is produced from dead plant matter squeezed and pressurized by the earths crust over billions
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New trains and train tracks were being built to help move the products that were being produced by big businesses. This created many jobs for people and also forced them to move into cities. The invention of the steam locomotive transformed society from a rural and agricultural economy into an urban and industrial one. The steam locomotive made it possible for people to travel long distances across land much faster than ever before. With the new ways of traveling, people began feeling wanderlust. Not only did steam engines make it possible to travel on land, but also water. By 1815, the steamboat began to replace barges and flat boats which transported goods only from east to west or north to south. The steamboat had enough power to fight the current, making it prime for transporting goods and expanding westward. The steam boat also caused a need for an improved river system. Most rivers had rapids or were not high enough for most steam boats to travel by. Therefore, a network of canals, locks, and dams were made to help the steamboats travel more efficiently. The Erie Canal was a major project that arose due to the new technology. The canal connected the eastern seaboard to the northwest. The new canal system along with the new steam boat revolutionized trade in the united …show more content…
During the industrial revolution, the growing use of mass production led to numerous environmental hazards. Many steam engines ran off of coal, petroleum, or gas. These three sources of energy are called fossil fuels. They are Earths naturally made chemicals that have accumulated over billions of years. The overuse of these energy sources may cause us to run them dry. These chemicals also contribute to an abundance of carbon dioxide. Over time, too much carbon dioxide can cause a greenhouse effect. The atmosphere’s chemical makeup can cause the temperature of the earth to rise and cause a disruption in ecosystems. To add to the negative effects, trees were being cut down in very large sums to supply wood for burning and building. Forests help emit oxygen, so without them, the harsh chemicals in the air could not be compensated with clean

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