Scottish inventions and discoveries
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Scottish inventions and discoveries are objects, processes or techniques either partially or entirely invented or discovered by a person born in or descended from Scotland. In some cases, an invention's Scottishness is determined by the fact that it came into existence in Scotland (e.g., animal cloning), by non-Scots working in the country. Often, things that are discovered for the first time are also called "inventions" and in many cases there is no clear line between the two.
The Scots take enormous pride in the history of Scottish invention and discovery. There are many books devoted solely to the subject, as well as scores of websites listing Scottish inventions and discoveries with varying degrees of science.
Even before the Industrial Revolution, Scots have been at the forefront of innovation and discovery across a wide range of spheres. Some of the most significant products of Scottish ingenuity include James Watt's steam engine, improving on that of Thomas Newcomen, the bicycle, macadamisation (not to be confused with tarmac or tarmacadam), the telephone invented by Alexander Graham Bell, John Logie Baird's invention of television, Alexander Fleming's discovery of penicillin, and the discoveries of electromagnetics, radar, and insulin.
The following is a list of inventions or discoveries that are in some way Scottish.
Road transport innovations 
- Macadamised roads (the basis for, but not specifically, tarmac): John Loudon McAdam (1756–1836)
- The pedal bicycle: Attributed to both Kirkpatrick Macmillan (1813–1878) and Thomas McCall (1834–1904)
- The pneumatic tyre: Robert William Thomson and John Boyd Dunlop (1822–1873) 
- The overhead valve engine: David Dunbar Buick (1854–1929) 
- Walkodile a multi-award winning invention by Elaine Stephen MBE, a primary school teacher from Aberdeenshire (launched in 2007)
Civil engineering innovations 
- Tubular steel: Sir William Fairbairn (1789–1874)
- The Falkirk wheel: Initial designs by Nicoll Russell Studios, Architects and engineers Binnie Black and Veatch (Opened 2002) 
- The patent slip for docking vessels: Thomas Morton (1781–1832) 
- The Drummond Light: Thomas Drummond (1797–1840) 
- Canal design: Thomas Telford (1757–1834) 
- Dock design improvements: John Rennie (1761–1821) 
- Crane design improvements: James Bremner (1784–1856) 
Aviation innovations 
- Aircraft design: Frank Barnwell (1910) Establishing the fundamentals of aircraft design at the University of Glasgow.
Power innovations 
- Condensing steam engine improvements: James Watt (1736–1819)
- Coal-gas lighting: William Murdoch (1754–1839) 
- The Stirling heat engine: Rev. Robert Stirling (1790–1878) 
- Carbon brushes for dynamos: George Forbes (1849–1936) 
- The Clerk cycle gas engine: Sir Dugald Clerk (1854–1932) 
- The wave-powered electricity generator: by South African Engineer Stephen Salter in 1977 
- The Pelamis Wave Energy Converter ("red sea snake" wave energy device): Richard Yemm, 1998 
Shipbuilding innovations 
- Europe's first passenger steamboat: Henry Bell (1767–1830) 
- The first iron-hulled steamship: Sir William Fairbairn (1789–1874) 
- The first practical screw propeller: Robert Wilson (1803–1882)
- Marine engine innovations: James Howden (1832–1913)
- John Elder & Charles Randolph (Marine Compound expansion engine)
Military innovations 
- Lieutenant-General Sir David Henderson two areas:
- Field intelligence. Argued for the establishment of the Intelligence Corps. Wrote Field Intelligence: Its Principles and Practice (1904) and Reconnaissance (1907) on the tactical intelligence of modern warfare during World War I.
- Royal Air Force. Considered instrumental in the foundation of the British Royal Air Force.
- United States Navy. Created largely by John Paul Jones, who was born in Kirkcudbrightshire.
Special Forces: Founded by Sir David Stirling and other Scottish Royal Marines, the SAS was created in World War Two in the North Africa campaign to go behind enemy lines to destroy and disrupt the enemy. Since then it as been regarded as the most famous and influential special forces that has inspired other countries to form their own special forces too.
Heavy industry innovations 
- Coal mining extraction in the sea on an artificial island by Sir George Bruce of Carnock (1575). Regarded as one of the industrial wonders of the late medieval period.
- Making cast steel from wrought iron: David Mushet (1772–1847) 
- Wrought iron sash bars for glass houses: John C. Loudon (1783–1865) 
- The hot blast oven: James Beaumont Neilson (1792–1865) 
- The steam hammer: James Nasmyth (1808–1890) 
- Wire rope: Robert Stirling Newall (1812–1889) 
- Steam engine improvements: William Mcnaught (1831–1881) 
- The Fairlie, a narrow gauge, double-bogie railway engine: Robert Francis Fairlie (1831–1885)
- Cordite - Sir James Dewar, Sir Frederick Abel (1889) 
Agricultural innovations 
- Threshing machine improvements: James Meikle (c.1690-c.1780) & Andrew Meikle (1719–1811) 
- Hollow pipe drainage: Sir Hew Dalrymple, Lord Drummore (1700–1753) 
- The Scotch plough: James Anderson of Hermiston (1739–1808) 
- Deanstonisation soil-drainage system: James Smith (1789–1850) 
- The mechanical reaping machine: Rev. Patrick Bell (1799–1869) 
- The Fresno scraper: James Porteous (1848–1922) 
- The Tuley tree shelter: Graham Tuley in 1979 
Communication innovations 
- Print stereotyping: William Ged (1690–1749) 
- Roller printing: Thomas Bell (patented 1783) 
- The adhesive postage stamp and the postmark: James Chalmers (1782–1853) 
- Universal Standard Time: Sir Sandford Fleming (1827–1915) 
- Light signalling between ships: Admiral Philip H. Colomb (1831–1899) 
- The telephone: Alexander Graham Bell (1847–1922)
- The teleprinter: Frederick G. Creed (1871–1957) 
- The first working television, and colour television; John Logie Baird (1888–1946)
- Radar: Robert Watson-Watt (1892–1973)
- The underlying principles of Radio - James Clerk Maxwell (1831–1879) 
- The automated teller machine and Personal Identification Number system - James Goodfellow (born 1937) 
Publishing firsts 
- The first edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica (1768–81) 
- The first English textbook on surgery(1597) 
- The first modern pharmacopaedia, William Cullen (1776). The book became 'Europe’s principal text on the classification and treatment of disease'. His ideas survive in the terms nervous energy and neuroses (a word that Cullen coined).
- The first postcards and picture postcards in the UK 
- The first eBook from a UK administration (March 2012). Scottish Government publishes 'Your Scotland, Your Referendum'.
Fictional Characters 
- Peter Pan, by J.M. Barrie, born in Kirriemuir, Angus
- Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- Long John Silver and The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson
Scientific innovations 
- Logarithms: John Napier (1550–1617)
- The theory of electromagnetism: James Clerk Maxwell (1831–1879) 
- The first theory of the Higgs boson or "God Particle" by Anglo-Scot Peter Higgs particle-physics theorist at the University of Edinburgh (1964) 
- Popularising the decimal point: John Napier (1550–1617)
- The world's first oil refinery and a process of extracting paraffin from coal laying the foundations for the modern oil industry: James Young (1811–1883)
- The Gregorian telescope: James Gregory (1638–1675) 
- The concept of latent heat: Joseph Black (1728–1799) 
- The pyroscope, atmometer and aethrioscope scientific instruments: Sir John Leslie (1766–1832) 
- Identifying the nucleus in living cells: Robert Brown (1773–1858) 
- Hypnotism: James Braid (1795–1860) 
- Incandescent light bulb: James Bowman Lindsay (1799-1862)
- Transplant rejection: Professor Thomas Gibson (1940s) the first medical doctor to understand the relationship between donor graft tissue and host tissue rejection and tissue transplantation by his work on aviation burns victims during World War II.
- Colloid chemistry: Thomas Graham (1805–1869) 
- The kelvin SI unit of temperature: William Thomson, Lord Kelvin (1824–1907) 
- Devising the diagramatic system of representing chemical bonds: Alexander Crum Brown (1838–1922) 
- Criminal fingerprinting: Henry Faulds (1843–1930) 
- The noble gases: Sir William Ramsay (1852–1916) 
- The cloud chamber recording of atoms: Charles Thomson Rees Wilson (1869–1959) 
- Pioneering work on nutrition and poverty: John Boyd Orr (1880–1971) 
- The ultrasound scanner: Ian Donald (1910–1987) 
- Ferrocene synthetic substances: Peter Ludwig Pauson in 1955 
- The MRI body scanner: John Mallard and James Huchinson from (1974–1980) 
- The first cloned mammal (Dolly the Sheep): Was conducted in The Roslin Institute research centre in 1996 
- The seismometer innovations thereof: James David Forbes 
- Metaflex fabric innovations thereof: University of St. Andrews (2010) application of the first manufacturing fabrics that manipulate light in bending it around a subject. Before this such light manipulating atoms were fixed on flat hard surfaces. The team at St Andrews are the first to develop the concept to fabric.
- Tractor beam innovations thereof: St. Andrews University (2013) the worlds first to succeed in creating a functioning Tractor beam that pulls objects on a microscopic level
- Macaulayite: Dr. Jeff Wilson of the Macaulay Institute, Aberdeen.
Sports innovations 
Scots have been instrumental in the invention and early development of several sports:
- several modern athletics events, i.e. shot put and the hammer throw, derive from Highland Games and earlier 12th century Scotland 
- Curling 
- Gaelic handball The modern game of handball is first recorded in Scotland in 1427, when King James I an ardent handball player had his men block up a cellar window in his palace courtyard that was interfering with his game.
- Cycling, invention of the pedal-cycle 
- Golf (see Golf in Scotland)
- Shinty The history of Shinty as a non-standardised sport pre-dates Scotland the Nation. The rules were standardised in the 19th century by Archibald Chisholm 
- Rugby sevens: Ned Haig and David Sanderson (1883) 
Medical innovations 
- Pioneering the use of surgical anaesthesia with Chloroform: Sir James Young Simpson (1811–1870) 
- The hypodermic syringe: Alexander Wood (1817–1884) 
- Discovery of hypnotism (November 1841): James Braid (1795–1860) 
- Identifying the mosquito as the carrier of malaria: Sir Ronald Ross (1857–1932) 
- Identifying the cause of brucellosis: Sir David Bruce (1855–1931) 
- Discovering the vaccine for typhoid fever: Sir William B. Leishman (1865–1926) 
- Discovering insulin: John J R Macleod (1876–1935) with others 
- Penicillin: Sir Alexander Fleming (1881–1955) 
- General anaesthetic - Pionered by Scotsman James Young Simpson and Englishman John Snow
- Ambulight PDT: light-emitting sticking plaster used in photodynamic therapy (PDT) for treating non-melanoma skin cancer. Developed by Ambicare Dundee's Ninewells Hospital and St Andrews University. (2010)
- Discovering an effective tuberculosis treatment: Sir John Crofton in the 1950s 
- Primary creator of the artificial kidney (Professor Kenneth Lowe - Later Queen's physician in Scotland) 
- Developing the first beta-blocker drugs: Sir James W. Black in 1964 
- Developing modern asthma therapy based both on bronchodilation (salbutamol) and anti-inflammatory steroids (beclomethasone dipropionate) : Sir David Jack in 1972
- Glasgow coma scale: Graham Teasdale and Bryan J. Jennett (1974) 
- EKG [Electrocardiography]: Alexander Muirhead (1911) 
Household innovations 
- The television John Logie Baird (1923)
- The British Broadcasting Corporation BBC: John Reith, 1st Baron Reith (1922) its founder, first general manager and Director-general of the British Broadcasting Corporation
- The refrigerator: William Cullen (1748) 
- The first electric bread toaster: Alan MacMasters (1893)
- The flush toilet: Alexander Cummings (1775) 
- The Dewar flask: Sir James Dewar (1847–1932) 
- The first distiller to triple distill Irish whiskey:John Jameson (Whisky distiller)
- The piano footpedal: John Broadwood (1732–1812) 
- The first automated can-filing machine John West (1809–1888) 
- The waterproof macintosh: Charles Macintosh (1766–1843) 
- The kaleidoscope: Sir David Brewster (1781–1868) 
- Keiller's marmalade Janet Keiller (1797) - The first recipe of rind suspended marmalade or Dundee marmalade produced in Dundee.
- The modern lawnmower: Alexander Shanks (1801–1845) 
- The Lucifer friction match: Sir Isaac Holden (1807–1897) 
- The self filling pen: Robert Thomson (1822–1873) 
- Cotton-reel thread: J & J Clark of Paisley 
- Lime cordial: Lauchlan Rose in 1867
- Bovril beef extract: John Lawson Johnston in 1874 
- The electric clock: Alexander Bain (1840) 
- Chemical Telegraph (Automatic Telegraphy) Alexander Bain (1846) In England Bain's telegraph was used on the wires of the Electric Telegraph Company to a limited extent, and in 1850 it was used in America.
Weapons innovations 
- The carronade cannon: Robert Melville (1723–1809) 
- The Ferguson rifle: Patrick Ferguson in 1770 or 1776 
- The Lee bolt system as used in the Lee-Metford and Lee-Enfield series rifles: James Paris Lee 
- The Ghillie suit 
- The percussion cap: invented by Scottish Presbyterian clergyman Alexander Forsyth 
Miscellaneous innovations 
- Boys' Brigade
- Bank of England devised by William Paterson
- Bank of France devised by John Law
- The industrialisation and modernisation of Japan by Thomas Blake Glover
- Kirin Brewing Company founded by Thomas Blake Glover
- Colour photography: the first known permanent colour photograph was taken by James Clerk Maxwell (1831–1879)
- Safetray invented by Alison Grieve
See also 
- List of domesticated Scottish breeds
- Homecoming Scotland 2009
- English inventions and discoveries
- Welsh inventions and discoveries
- Irish inventions and discoveries
- Dutch inventions and discoveries
- German inventions and discoveries
- Swedish inventions
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