This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
com - Topics
The Machines of Al-Jazari and Taqi Al-Din by Prof. Salim T S Al-Hassani* Table of contents 1. Introduction 2. Muslim Contributions to Engineering 3. Al-Jazari: A Biographical Sketch 4. Taqi Al-Din: Short Biography 5. The Working Principles of the Machines 5.1 The Reciprocating Pump of Al-Jazari 5.2 The Six Cylinder Pump of Taqi Al-Din 5.3 The Third Water Raising Machine of Al-Jazari 5.4 The Elephant Clock of Al-Jazari 6. Mathematical Analysis 7. Animations and 3D Graphics 8. Notes and References *** Note of the editor This article is based on a paper presented by Professor Salim Al-Hassani at the 22nd Annual Conference on the History of Arabic Sciences held at Aleppo University, Aleppo, on 23-25 October 2001. It summarises the results of his investigations on the machines of Al-Jazari and Taqi Al-Din, sponsored by the Foundation for Science, Technology and Civilisation (FSTC, Manchester) and carried out at the University of Manchester, Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST –now The University of Manchester) as Final Year student projects for the award of B. Eng Hons. Degree in Mechanical Engineering. *** 1. Introduction Large image Figure 1: The Elephant Clock: Leaf from a manuscript of Al-Jazari's Kitab fi macrifat al-hiyal al-handasiyya (The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices) dated 715 H/1315 CE. (Source) The investigations recently conducted by the author of this article explore the origin and operation of some complex machines invented by two genius scientists, engineer and inventors, Al-Jazari and Taqi al-Din, in the Islamic east, between the late 12th century and late 16th century. These machines are water raising machines and water clocks. The investigation was an in-depth research and discussion, aiming at the reconstruction of these devices and the description of their operation, besides a detailed account of their components.
Muslim Contributions to Engineering Studies made during the past fifty years demonstrate that the scientists and engineers of the classical age of Islamic civilisation made substantial contributions to developments in engineering and that some of their accomplishments were passed on to the Europeans through Spain and Italy and the Crusades. In the few cases where the engineers and technologists did write down an account of their work and observations. describes approximately one hundred pieces of technical equipment. while a few others are still extant and have been studied by historians of science and technology during the last decades. They carried out their work competently but did not write down or publish their discoveries and achievements. Their skills and knowledge were passed on from master to pupil without being recorded. Hill (1979). The mathematical analysis confirmed the viability and efficiency of the original design as described by Al-Jazari and Taqi Al-Din. During that period. according to the machine kinematics of each component. some of their manuscripts have been mislaid or destroyed. After assembling the objects. the three sons of Musa Ibn Shakir. . Kitab al-hiyal (Book of Ingenious Mechanical Devices) by Banu Musa. A CD with full interactive instructions to assist in understanding and investigating the mechanisms of the machines has been produced. 2. During the past fifty years there has been a revival of interest in the history of technology during the early Islamic period. The extent of their ability and skill can now be judged from the few articles and instruments they made which still survive in some museums. which was written in Baghdad about 830 CE. several engineers and technologists were practical rather than literary people. Many of the achievements made in engineering and technology in the Islamic world in earlier centuries are not well known. This manuscript. a sequence of images was obtained to produce the effect of 3D animated motion. By incrementally adjusting the position. Mathematical descriptions of the working (kinetic. The book has been edited by A. 2. Among the most important of these manuscripts are: a. Al-Hassan (1981) and translated into English by Donald R. Two main reasons for this were suggested by Ludlow and Bahrani: 1. A few Arabic manuscripts dealing with mechanical engineering have been found and some of these were translated into European languages. this project succeeded in combining state-of-the-art engineering and information technology to bring these machines to life. a full three dimensional image is produced of the machine. The original dimensions of the components were used to produce modern engineering drawings and these were used to produce images in 3D Studio Max software for each object. The images can be rotated to produce the effects of fly over and fly around the machines. Y. motion and energy characteristics) were coded in MATHCAD to predict the various positions of the parts and the motion of the water.Geometrical and mechanical details were obtained from the original Arabic manuscripts and from English translations. For the first time.
and he spent twenty-five years with this ruling family in Southern Turkey. water-raising devices and textile machinery. there has been no archaeological study of medieval Islamic technology. which still exist. Al-Turuq al-saniya fi al-alat al-ruhaniya (Sublime Methods in Spiritual Machines) by Taqi Al-Din ibn Ma'ruf. written in Damascus about 1551 CE. examination of existing machines and references in the works of geographers. The term "fine technology" refers to machines or instruments that were designed to cause wonder and aesthetic pleasure to courtly circles. The term "utilitarian technology" refers to machines that were essential to the economic prosperity of society but were very much simpler technically than the construction of fine technology. pumps and various other machines. the Artuqid King of Diyar Bakr. travellers and other non-technical writers. such as the Noria at Hamah. or for timekeeping. writing and inventions. as the machine is designed to be a beautiful ornamental artefact with splendid craftsmanship which raises water at the same time. weight lifting equipment. Hill. He received patronage from the Artuqid Kings and financial means were provided through salary and pension. Topkapi Palace Museum Library. and much more effort is needed to study this field. he was able to devote all his time to study. such as Al-Jazari's The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices. . Syria. c. Useful contributions have been made by Eilhard Wiedemann. nor any detailed technical examination of those machines.b. Al-Jazari: A Biographical Sketch Large image Figure 2:The reciprocating pump from Al-Jazari's manuscript. Machines of this category include mills. The source of information on utilitarian technology comes largely from archaeology finds. contains descriptions and illustrations of clocks. Fritz Hauser. The latter is the most important contributor to this project and most of his works focus on Al-Jazari's Kitab fi ma'rifat al-hiyal al-handasiyyah (The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices). Al-Hassan and Donald R. This manuscript. It is interesting to note that Al-Jazari's third water-raising device incorporates both categories of technology. This book. having served the father and brother of Nasir al-Din. Kitab fi ma'rifat al-hiyal al-handasiya (The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices) by al-Jazari written in Diyar Bakr (Turkey) about 1206 CE. which has not yet been translated into English. Therefore. The Artuqids were a Turcoman dynasty who maintained a precarious autonomy during the 12th century in Mesopotamia. Ahmed Y." Medieval Islamic technology can be divided into two categories. machines for raising water and other miscellaneous devices. The contributions of engineering in the Islamic world are evidently many. Ahmet III 3472 Al-Jazari was in the service of Nasir al-Din. namely "fine technology" and "utilitarian technology". yet the materials or treatises available to researchers are very limited. research. fountains and perpetual flutes. The source of information on fine technology can be found in a few technical treatises. 3. Quoting Dr Hill: "As far as I am aware. which has recently been translated into English by Donald R Hill contains descriptions and illustrations of clocks. or for the use of scientists (mainly astronomers).
Al-Jazari was quite evidently a master craftsman himself and regarded himself as one person in a succession of craftsmen and engineers. 4. Rather. has constructed small models of a few of Al-Jazari's devices. and to devise real improvements on the work of his predecessors. and much of the language that he used. Nevertheless. Yusuf b. for the 1976 World of Islam Festival. are in use right up to the present day in the technical vocabulary of Arabic. Ahmad b. Muhammad b. He is known to have written 19 books. which involved terms common amongst the craftsmen of that time. Furthermore. . the Frankfurt Institute of the History of Arabic and Islamic Sciences. 2) was first made by Al-Jazari in 1206. Al-Jazari's main virtues were the ability to carefully manufacture and assemble components. Much the same observations can be made about Taqi Al-Din as those made for Al. Our present project also fulfils that aspiration in that all of Al-Jazari's machines as well as those of Taqi al-Din will be re-constructed by engineering and computer graphics. 4) shows a 3D image of this pump as produced from engineering analysis based on the details given by Al-Jazari. exactly in accordance with Al-Jazari's intention. He was described by his contemporaries as the greatest scientist and engineer on earth. Taqi Al-Din: Short Biography Large image Figure 3: The six cylinder water pump from Taqi Al-Din's manuscript. Left image (Fig. he expressed awareness of the need to develop machines with a better design and greater output than the traditional ones. Indeed. famous as Taqi Al-Din. Taqi Al-Din also gave a full description of the pump. the "castle" water clock was reconstructed in the Science Museum. Muhammad Al-Shami.Jazari. Recently. to display some vagueness about the positioning of the equipment. He was the son of a judge and became a judge himself. was born in Damascus in 1525/6 CE. and he died in 1585 in Istanbul. This pump (Fig. He did not like to copy his predecessors' work blindly. under the direction of Fuat Sezgin. The machines we modelled are described in his book Al-turuq al-saniyah fi al-'alat al-ruhaniyah. He did however have a tendency to be inconsistent in his dimensions. (© FSTC) Click here to see the animation. the then capital of the Ottoman Empire. He states this by describing in scrupulous detail how each device was constructed. taking drawings and text together. 5. The Working Principles of the Machine 5. he was concerned only with innovative and ingenious designs and inventions. and failed to give a coherent record of mathematical or geometrical processes. it can be said that they fulfilled their declared intention of describing the devices so that they could be reconstructed by their successors. London. Muhammad Ibn Ma'ruf. His full name was Taqi Al-Din Muhammad ibn Ma'ruf b. It works perfectly.1 The Reciprocating Pump of Al-Jazar Large image Figure 4: 3D image extracted from the reproduction of the reciprocating pump by scholars of FSTC.
the clack valve closes when the water moves in this direction. it pulls the piston with it. The rotation is transferred through the cogwheel (gear A) and the lantern (pinion gear B). 5. The wheel is driven by a water wheel or an animal drive. With the rotation of the camshaft. This marks the point where the piston's stroke ends. The distal end of the connecting rod lifts the lead weight upwards. each containing a piston. The arm is slotted so that a crank-pin on a gear wheel causes it to swing with wheel rotation. The two cylinders are connected to manifolds with inlet and outlet flap. After the camshaft rotates to a certain angle. © FSTC Click here to view first animation.3. The connecting rods are pivoted at the centre. The input power source is the river and the resultant output is the water head delivered. The Six Cylinder Pump of Taqi Al-Din Large image Figure 5: 3D image of Taqi Al-Din's six cylinder water pump. so that the water is forced to go through the other hole and through the delivery pipes. Click here to view second animation. 7) shows a 3D image of this machine. The rotation is then transmitted via a pillar connected to the upper lantern and the cogwheel which turns the sindi-wheel. The two pistons are connected through a rod. the lead weight pushes the piston under gravity forcing against the clack valve. Large image Figure 7: 3D image of Al-Jazari's third water raising machine. each cam pushes its connecting rod downwards. As the lead weight moves upwards. Water flows through the inlet pipe into the basin and out on to the scoops turning the water turbine. This machine on the left ( Fig. Taqi Al-Din explained how this pump (Fig. As described earlier. they carry water up to the aqueduct.2. As the jars dip in and out of the water basin. The sindi-wheel carries a series of jars connected to ropes. The Third Water Raising Machine of Al-Jazari Large image Figure 6: The third water raising machine from Al-Jazari's manuscript. The synchronisation and control sequence of all the pistons is provided by the angular arrangement of the cams around the shaft. 3) works in his manuscript. The flaps act as non-return valves.© FSTC Cick here to view the animation.The pump consists of two opposing copper cylinders. which is pin-jointed to a swinging arm pivoted at the base of the pump. creating vacuum which sucks the water through a non-return clack valve into the piston cylinder. The river exerts a force on the scoops which provide the drag force causing the wheel and camshaft to rotate. 6) was described in full by Al-Jazari. 5. . the cam releases the connecting rod. The image below (Fig. Then.
pulling the wire that activates the tripping mechanism. Click here to see the animation. as the ball drops onto the serpent's mouth (during operation). Large image8B. The elephant clock is a fine example of the many exquisite devices created during the Muslim Golden Age.4. it activates a gravitational force. 9 shows a 3D image of the various components of the clock. It is classified as fine technology. As the ball leaves the serpent's mouth. Return Mechanism: The serpent has a return mechanism in the form of a pulley. the submersible float is now on the surface again and the cycle repeats. thus pulling down the serpent's head. Closed-loop system: The clock will continue to work as long as there are metal balls in the magazine. A submersible float or tarjahar drives it (a tarjahar is a device used for timing the allocation of irrigation water to farmers). the lowered serpent's head returns to its original position and lifts a chain along with it. In addition. When the return mechanism is activated. Flow Regulators: A small orifice in the submersible float is carefully calibrated to produce correct rates of flow under various heads of water rates. it is set by trial and error methods. 8A. 8B) shows a schematic drawing of the clock as given in Ludlow and Bahrani 1978.5. such as the striking of the cymbal and chirping of the bird. flow regulators and a closed-loop system. Large image Figure 9: The Mahout on the neck of the elephant. Large image Figure 8A: The Elephant Clock: Leaf from a manuscript of Al-Jazari's Kitab fi macrifat al-hiyal al-handasiyya (The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices) dated 715 H/1315 CE. It is described as one of the most spectacular clocks invented by Al-Jazari and it is estimated to be about 4 feet long and 6 feet high. Automata: The clock employed automata. The steady sinking of the float acts as gravitational force. (Source). Gravitational Force: The clock employs gravitational force as motive power. to mark the passage of the hours. the vases on either side and the scribe on top of the circular platform. This rate of flow determines the time at which the clock strikes at hourly interval. The second image (Fig. The Elephant Clock of Al-Jazari The first image (Fig. 8A) below shows a sketch of the elephant clock by Al-Jazari. It also demonstrates his considerable skill in both design and construction. This chain is connected to the float and it lifts up the submersible float and empties its content. 8B: Schematic drawing of the elephant clock. The characteristics of the elephant clock consist of several mechanisms that are presently used in modern engineering such as automata. as the device is used either for amusement and aesthetic pleasure or for astronomical observation and computation. . Fig. it activates a return mechanism.
is the castle (a square brass box with a detachable dome). MATHCAD was used to link all the equations describing the motion of each component. The serpent is in effect a pulley which rotates on an axle that rests on bearings fixed between each pair of the columns. the analysis starts with equating the weight of the lead and pistons to the required water head through the collective output pipe. When all the equations are encoded into MATHCAD. the chain will tilt the sunken float out of the water. The ball will travel from the beak of the falcon onto the open mouth of the serpent. in May 2001. in the case of Taqi Al-Din's six cylinder pump. From the forces and torques. The chain runs from the underside of the float to a staple on the tail of the serpent. At the top of the clock. Further allowances are made for the shape of the scoop at the end of each spoke of the water wheel.Control Mechanisms: The submersible float or tarjahar drives the clock. stresses were calculated which are compared to the failure strengths . the submersible float lies on the surface of the water in the tank. Upon loading with the ball. UMIST. the serpent head will be lowered down to the vase. On a number of occasions. Mathematical Analysis Full mathematical analyses of each machine are contained in the respective project reports placed in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. The dimensions were obtained from Al-Jazari's and Taqi Al-Din's manuscripts. Inside the castle is a ball release mechanism. The lead weights are then balanced by the force on the connecting rods which determine the torque on the camshaft which then fixes the force required by the water flow from the river. Then the emptied float will rest on the water surface and repeat the cycle. A calibrated orifice on its underside allows water to enter and subsequently sinks the float. supported by four columns. which when activated. Additional analysis was conducted on the strength requirement of the components. Allowance had to be made for friction forces at the pivot and for all sliding surfaces. Upon activation of the return mechanics for the serpent. The wire runs from the float to the ball release mechanism inside the castle and activates it when the float sinks. Attached to the submersible float are a wire and a chain. For example. thus emptying it of its contents. releases a ball that travels down a channel leading to the beak of the falcon. the solution provides the relationship between the geometrical and mechanical parameters and graphs are plotted to assist in the assessment of the efficiency of the machine. 6. the return mechanism of the serpent is activated and the serpent returns to its original position. Initially. Once the ball drops away from the serpent's mouth. each analysis starts with equating the forces acting on each component allowing for friction as well as compatibility of velocities and displacements and the output is predicted. It is beyond the scope of this paper to describe these analyses. Essentially. we had to make a best guess of the actual dimensions of the component.
Taqi Al-Din wa-'l-handasah al-mikanikiyah al-'arabiyah (Taqi Al-Din and the Arabic mechanical engineering) with "Kitab al-turuq al-saniyah fi al-alat al-ruhaniyah" from the sixteenth century (Aleppo. Modifying some objects to match those in the real machine. Hill. . 25. Creating lights and cameras and setting them into proper positions to give a real look to the model. while the "wire frame" view shows the "skeleton" view of the devices. [2. 253. ~ End ~ Back to the Table of Contents *Professor Salim T S Al-Hassani.] C. "Mechanical Engineering during the Early Islamic Period". 1986. Islamic Technology: An Illustrated History. 8. Animations and 3D Graphics Modelling and animation were carried out using 3D Studio MAX R3. G. rear perspective view. 1998. p. Hill.] Ahmad Y. 3. Modelling the machines was done in four steps: 1. Reidel. [4. image processing and texture mapping for both 2D and 3D objects. E. The Arab Influence in Medieval Europe. The graphics show the components. 12. Edited by David A.] Ibn Al-Razzaz al-Jazari. New York: Ithaca Press. Creating objects and setting them into positions. Al-Hassan and Donald R. Edited by John R Hayes. S. The close-up view zooms onto the chambers of the device in perspective view. 4. Al-Hassan. 177. 1976). devices and machines in different angles of views. 3D studio MAX is a very powerful graphics software used for modelling. [3. 1974. close up views and "wire frame" views. The 3D drawing file and animations are stored on CDs to enable a step-by-step construction of the machines or modification of the drawings. p. Ludlow and A. Assigning materials to objects to make them look realistic.] For details on his bio-bibliography. Notes and References [1. see the book by Ahmad Y. Emeritus Professor at the University of Manchester and Chairman of The Foundation for Science. The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices.] Donald R. [5. Bahrani. p. p. London: Ashgate. The Genius of Arab Civilisation (Source of Renaissance). based on the findings on the research and mathematical analysis of the machines. 79-83. front view and left view. 1976. 1994. Dordrecht: D. animating. pp. 7. Mech. Studies in Medieval Islamic Technology. Oxford: Phaidon. Cambridge University Press. Variorum collected studies series.and buckling capacity of the components. The different angles of views include the front perspective view.] Dionisius A. translated and annotated by Donald R Hill. I. [7. These animations enable the reader to view the device from different angles and also to view the device in operational mode. 2. The Chartered Mechanical Engineer. 1978. Agius and Richard Hitchcock (Editors).] Compilation of writers. [6. The 3D animations consist of two movie files: a 360o rotational view and one that shows the movements of individual components during their operations. King.1 package.
Topics About FSTC Agriculture Art & Architecture Art of Living . UK. former Professor of Control Engineering At ETH Zürich surveys the subject by investigating the words of Banu Musa. A Review of Early Muslim Control Engineering by: Professor Mohamed Mansour Professor Mohamed Mansour During the period of Islamic-Arabic extraordinary activity in Science and Technology (9th-13th century). a constituent part of Islamic technology. in general. Manchester. work and achievements of Al-Jazari.Hill diagrams. We see two suction pumps in synchronous motion driven by a paddle wheel. In this short survey. in particular. by: FSTC Limited. Muslim Rocket Technology by: Professor Dr. from where they passed to Italy. different level controls using float valves or combination of syphons and the development of On-Off control. some 1000 years ago. The author provides also web links and data related to the work achieved by himself and FSTC on Islamic technology. The details of this unique pump were obtained from his manuscript and D. This article is a short account on the development of Muslim rocket technology. there are some recorded contributions to the area of Automatic Control mainly in the development of water clocks using float valve regulators. Professor Dr Mohamed Mansour. the most famous mechanical engineer of his time. 2004 Related Articles: Al-Jazari: The Mechanical Genius by: Professor Salim Al-Hassani Professor Salim Al-Hassani The following short survey presents a rapid overview on the life. and finally Germany. Ridhwan al-Sa'ati and Al-Jazari. going from there to France. Mohamed Mansour Professor Mohamed Mansour Arabic accounts report that Muslims introduced firearms into Islamic Spain. Al-Muradi.Technology and Civilisation (FSTC). Al-Jazari brought Islamic technology to a culminant point. Muslims also developed and refined gun powder and aquired rocket making technology. by: FSTC The animation shows a virtual model of one of al-Jazari’s water raising pumps. Resources: Al-Jazari's Water Pump. and on Al-Jazari's ground breaking work. Thu 30 December.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.