This page lists the principal inventions and discoveries of Thomas Edison.
A complete list of Edison's patents -- over 1,000 -- is provided on the
For more information on Edison's inventions,
see Related Resources.
- Invented the electrical vote recorder.
- Invented the universal stock ticker
and the unison stop.
- Invented the motograph.
- Invented the automatic telegraph system.
- Invented duplex, quadruplex, sextuplex, and multiplex
- Invented paraffin paper.
- Invented the carbon rheostat.
- Discovered "Etheric Force," an electric phenomenon
that is the foundation of wireless telegraphy.
- Invented the electric pen used for the first mimeographs.
- Invented the carbon telephone transmitter, making telephony
commercially practical. This included the microphone used in radio.
- Invented the phonograph. This was Edison's favorite invention.
He sponsored the Edison Phonograph Polka to help popularize the
- Discovered incandescent light.
- Radically improved dynamos and generators.
- Discovered a system of distribution, regulation,
of electric current-switches, fuses, sockets, and meters.
- Invented the magnetic ore separator.
- Discovered the "Edison Effect,"
the fundamental principle of electronics.
- Discovered a system of wireless induction telegraph
between moving trains and stations.
He also patented similar systems for ship-to-shore use.
- Invented the motion picture camera.
- Invented the fluoroscope.
- Invented the fluorescent electric lamp.
- Invented the nickel-iron-alkaline storage battery.
- Invented the electric safety miner's lamp.
- Discovered the process for manufacturing
synthetic carbolic acid.
- Conducted special experiments on more than 40 major war problems
for the Navy Department.
Edison served as Chairman of the Naval Consulting Board
and did much other work on National Defense.
- Tested 17,000 plants for rubber content as
a source of rubber in war emergencies.
A piece of vulcanized rubber was made from a Goldenrod strain he developed.
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