From Kook Science
Virginio Florio was an Italian inventor resident at Turin, it was reported by U.S.-based newspapers in July 1913, who claimed to have built a perpetual motion machine based on heat exchange, transforming solar caloric energy[i] to produce mechanical energy. It was further reported in 1914 by British and Australian sources that Florio's machine had been demonstrated to Marcellin Berthelot, Camille Flammarion, and others at an unnamed Paris newspaper office, an event that would have had to have taken place at least seven years prior to the reporting.[ii]
- Florio, Virginio. Apparecchio per utilizzare il calore solare come forza motrice. 7 Sep. 1907.[iii]
- Florio, Virginio. Apparecchio per il comando a distanza di lampadine elettriche.
- Florio, Virginio. Generatore elettrico di vapore a regolazione. 1912.
- "PERPETUAL MOTION CLAIMED. Italian's Machine Collects and Transforms Caloric Energy of the Air.", Washington Post (Washington, D.C.): 8, 23 July 1913, https://www.newspapers.com/image/28963200/
- "The 'Perpetual Motion' Claim", New York Times (New York, NY): 4, 3 Aug. 1913, https://www.nytimes.com/1913/08/03/archives/the-perpetual-motion-claim.html
- "Perpetual Motion", English Mechanic and World of Science (2555): 138, 13 Mar. 1914, https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=coo.31924069709560&view=1up&seq=160
Perpetual motion, it seems, according to the Paris correspondent of the Daily Telegraph, is once again to supply mechanical power, if the invention of an Italian engineer, Signor Virgino Florio, is all that is claimed for it. At a meeting held at the offices of a Paris newspaper, which Dr. Berthelot, M. Camille Flammarion, and others attended, Signor Florio exhibited his invention. It consists of four hollowed globes poised at certain distances, two on each side of an axis, and connected by tubes. One of the globes is half-filled with water, and as soon as it is in contact with the water in the tank, while the other is only exposed to the air, there is a slight contraction in one globe and expansion in another. The water in one of the globes begins to flow into the other, and causes the equilibrium to be lost. The third hollow globe is then brought by a natural process of compensating equilibrium into touch with the water, the fourth remains exposed only to the air, and the same process is repeated. The globes continue alternately to fill and to pour out reciprocally the superfluous water and keep up a regular circular motion of the apparatus. The explanation is not very lucid, but it sounds like an old acquaintance.
- "PERPETUAL MOTION", West Australian (Perth, WA, Aus.): 5, 29 Apr. 1914, https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/26903955
- English-language newspapers of 1913 used the term "caloric" in their coverage, translating the Italian calore ("heat"), in reference to the hypothetical caloric, a perpetuating medium for heat that was long obsolete in conventional systems of thermodynamics and physics by 1913, avering to the observations of Joule, et. al. Florio, for his part, likely did not intend any such association.
- As Berthelot had died in March 1907.
- Appears in Bollettino della proprieta intellettuale under "Proprieta Industriale, Attestati di privativa industriale rilasciati nella seconda quindicina di febbraio 1908," sub-heading "Generatori di vapore, macchine diverse ed organi delle macchine," p. 213, Google Books link, https://www.google.com/books/edition/Bollettino_della_proprieta_intellettuale/g_21SpLnwpIC?hl=en&gbpv=1&pg=PA214 .