William Henry Phillips, English inventor, c 1850.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Lithograph by William Underwood after a painting by Alfred Tidey of Phillips, designer of a steam-powered flying machine and inventor of the 'fire annihilator', a fire extinguisher. Phillips apparently exhibited a working model of his 'aerial machine' at the aeronautical Exhibition in London, in 1868. The 'fire annihilator' emitted 'a jet of a peculiar gaseous vapour' which deprived the fire of oxygen.