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James Joule

This is a watercolour painting of the physicist James Joule.

James Joule was a physicist and brewer who was born in Salford. He and his brother were taught chemistry, physics and mathematics by John Dalton who inspired him to conduct original research. He is best known for his research into electricity and thermodynamics.

Joule established the ‘Mechanical Equivalent of Heat’ which included a constant describing the conversion of heat into mechanical work. The International unit of energy, the joule, is named in his honour.