HC Deb 17 June 1886 vol 306 cc1709-10

asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether he has seen reprinted from the Scientific Proceeding of the Royal Dublin Society a statement by Professor W. F. Barrett, of the Royal College of Science, Dublin, respecting the result of practical experiments which he had made with Wigham's double quadriform lighthouse gas light, in which the following passage occurs:— I cannot but think that the facts here recorded are worthy of attention. They demonstrate that the double quadriform arrests the attention, as a conspicuous glare to the naked eye, and as a clearly defined object in an opera glass, through a fog of sufficient depth and density to cut off a first class light shining through an annular lens at half the distance, and to quench the sound of a fog siren adjacent to the double quadriform, and also that this gas light is twice as powerful as any yet tried by the Trinity House or the Board of Trade; whether this double quadriform was refused a trial at the South Foreland experiments by the Trinity House; and, whether, in the interests of navigation and the saving of life at sea, the Board of Trade will desire the Trinity House to test this light, in comparison with the best light in their possession, in order that the truth may be ascertained as to what is the best light for the illumination of lighthouses?

THE SECRETARY TO THE BOARD (Mr. C. T. D. ACLAND) (Cornwall, Launceston)

(who replied) said: The attention of the Board of Trade has been called to the opinion expressed by Professor Barrett with regard to what is known as the Double Quadriform. It was not thought desirable to include any such form of apparatus in the recent experiments made by the Trinity House at the South Foreland, as the object of those experiments was to ascertain the relative values of oil, gas, and electricity as lighthouse illuminants, and to obtain the data necessary to settle any question as to the effect that would be produced by any combination of burners or apparatus used in the experiments. I am advised that this result has been attained, and that the effect of using such an apparatus as the Double Quadriform is calculable from the results already obtained, so that no further experiments for this purpose are required.