If the wretched hole which they show in Carnarvon Castle as the birthplace of Edward II be indeed the room in which that unhappy prince first saw the light, I can only say that whatever advantages the men of a former age may have had over us, certainly domestic comfort could not be said to be one of them.
– W. F. Butler. Ventilation of Buildings. New York: D. Van Nostrand, 1873, page 9. (Parks Special Collections TH 7653 .B978v)
Wherever you’re reading this, take a look around. Chances are that you are, or have recently, benefited from some kind of “domestic comfort” – whether that be an air conditioned house, electrical lighting, a metal cooking pot, or a ventilated
room, the products of science have made life a little pleasanter.
The home has benefited greatly from disciplines such as applied physics,1 electrical engineering, thermodynamics, materials science, mechanical engineering, acoustics, and so on. Iowa State scientists have contributed to several domestic comforts: Srinivas Garimella developed technology that can be used for environmentally friendly air conditioners and the Iowa State University Research Foundation, in conjunction with Maytag Corporation, developed an ice dispenser that will work in refrigerators with freezers on the bottom.
For more about Iowa State University inventors, see our technology collections subject guide. A few of those collections are listed below:
- Iowa State University Inventors and Inventions (RS 00/21)
- John Vincent Atanasoff Papers (RS 13/20/51)
- Wesley Fischer Buchele Papers (RS 9/7/52)(pdf)
- George Washington Carver Collection (RS 21/7/2)
- Charles A. and Sidonia Goetz Papers (RS 13/6/17)
1“Applied Physics is rooted in the fundamental truths and basic concepts of the physical sciences but is concerned with the utilization of scientific principles in practical devices and systems, and in the application of physics in other areas of science.” – Stanford Department of Applied Physics, 2003. ↩