Thomas Newcomen (February 1664 – 5 August 1729) was an English inventor. He made the first practical steam engine for pumping water, the Newcomen steam engine.
His first engine was not very efficient, and used a lot of coal. The Watt steam engine, was much more fuel efficient. Watt and his partner Matthew Boulton got substantial royalties because their machines saved so much on fuel bills.
Surviving Newcomen engines[change | change source]
Perhaps the last Newcomen-style engine to be used commercially – and the last still on its original site – is at the Elsecar Heritage Centre, near Barnsley in South Yorkshire. Newcomen engines that can be seen working are the Newcomen Memorial Engine at Dartmouth and the replica engine at the Black Country Museum in Dudley, West Midlands.