On this blog, we always talk about the hundreds of benefits of dry ice, but we rarely talk about its origins. Obviously, frozen CO2 is not easy to come by in nature, so it had to be discovered by somebody somewhere. And like many inventions or scientific discoveries, dry ice was actually discovered by accident. Interested in learning how ice was first discovered? Read this blog for more information about the fascinating product!
What is Dry Ice?
Before explaining how it was discovered, it should be mentioned what dry ice actually is. Dry ice is not normal ice at all; it is the frozen version of CO2, the gas that we exhale every day. It is much, much colder than water-based ice, so, therefore, it should be handled with caution. Dry ice has a variety of usages, such as industrial cleaning, long-term coolant for shipping perishable foods, and many more. However, as we’ll find out, ice also needs to be handled with care as it can be toxic in certain conditions.
Alright, now that the overview is complete, let’s learn how the ice was discovered way back 186 years ago.
In France in 1835, chemist Charles Thilorier discovered dry ice while performing an experiment with pressurized liquid carbon dioxide in a metal container. While he was observing the container after it had been opened, the liquid inside quickly turned into gas, and to his surprise, a small block of what appeared to be ice formed in its place. After that, many chemists started experimenting with the newly discovered phenomena and identified that the ice would break many containers such as glass and also cause explosions if sealed up for too long. For around 60 years, the ice was experimented with by scientists in labs with little practical applications until a failed soda-making patent was processed in England in 1897.
First Practical Use
The first use of dry ice outside of a laboratory was not until almost 100 years after it was discovered by a company called Prest Air Devices. The product that was invented is still something we use today and remains a requirement in every building. The first item for regular sale that was made using ice was the liquid fire extinguisher! After-sales of this revolutionary product took off; people started applying ice for practical reasons, such as flash freezing fruits and vegetables. Now, ice is everywhere for practical reasons!
Dry Ice For All Your Needs
Dry Ice Corp is the largest regional supplier of dry ice and related products in the Northeastern United States. Our ice is fresh and delivered right to your doorstep. We are happy to help you determine the best way to ship your goods, whether you have a huge amount of cookies or a single pie, and help you select the perfect amount of dry ice for the job. Give us a call at (201) 767-3200 or contact us online for a quote. To connect with us online, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.