23.4.1780 Kassel/D - 19.5.1861 Kassel/D
Carl Anton Henschel was born into an industrial family owning a foundry in Kassel. He started his career as an architect in Hessen County and there designed a robust pump for water elevation in a governmental salt-work. Henschel was appointed in 1808 Royal architect of salt-works and only in 1815 returned to Kassel and there improved conditions in the family company, which developed from a metal shop to an important machinery furnisher.
Henschel invented mechanical elements such as water pumps and steam machinery. Several were not accepted by the authorities because of being judged too dangerous for public use. Henschel was a Member of the Handelsund Gewerbeverein Kurhessen from 1834 and actively participated in early industrialization of Germany. His personal interests were steam engines of which an 1845 paper gives a retrospect view of observations conducted in 1837, following a competition of the French Society of Encouragement for the National Industry. This paper - only published in 1984 - investigates the reason why incrusted pipes tend to better performance of steam machinery than when clean. Another aspect of Henschel's inventiveness was the turbine. The original turbine of Benoît Fourneyron (1802-1867) was enthusiastically welcomed in Germany, yet its horizontal positioning did not satisfy customers. Henschel's pending 1837 patent was not accepted because it was considered minor. However, he erected in 1841 a turbine with a conical contraction towards the tailwater submerging the turbine and thus producing a suction effect on the turbine. Accordingly, the turbine efficiency was increased, and today's draft tubes are essential for turbines. Following a visit to Kassel, Nicolas-Joseph Jonval (1804-1844) modified this design to patent the Jonval turbine. According to Rühlmann, the latter had copied the original.
Anonymous (1910). Hundertjahrfeier der Maschinenfabrik Henschel & Sohn in Cassel. Deutsche Bauzeitung 44(67): 528.
Baumann, C.-F. (1985). 175 Jahre Henschel. Steiger: Moers. P
Metzeltin, E. (1935). Die ersten deutschen Lokomotivbauer. Technik-Geschichte 24: 23-28. P
Poggendorff, J.C. (1858). Henschel. Biographisch-Literarisches Handwörterbuch 1: 1071.
Raabe, J. (1985). Great names in the development of hydraulic machinery. Hydraulics and hydraulic research: 251-266, G. Garbrecht, ed. Balkema: Rotterdam. P
Rühlmann, M. (1855). Beitrag zur Geschichte der horizontalen Wasserräder mit besonderer Beachtung der Turbinen von Henschel in Cassel, fälschlich Jonval-Turbinen genannt. Zeitschrift Architektenund Ingenieurverein Hannover 1: 227-231.

Hydraulicians in Europe 1800-2000 . 2013.

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