Chronotherm thermostat

As a fuel saving device, the Chronotherm was among the first “green machines.” Using electricity, it saved energy automatically, by turning the heat down at night and up in the morning.

G. Leslie Oliver, Mark Dorlandt Photography.
Ron Shuker, Nigel Heseltine
c. 1935
2006-92
© 2011, HVACR Heritage Centre Canada. All Rights Reserved.


The Chronotherm would introduce complex, high tech, mechanical/electric controls into the Canadian home

The Chronotherm would introduce complex, high tech, mechanical/electric controls into the Canadian home in the late 1930s.

G. Leslie Oliver, Mark Dorlandt Photography.
Ron Shuker, Nigel Heseltine
c. 1935
© 2011, HVACR Heritage Centre Canada. All Rights Reserved.


The Chronotherm showing its, innovative self-starting, electric clock motor

The Chronotherm showing its, innovative self-starting, electric clock motor.

G. Leslie Oliver, Mark Dorlandt Photography.
Ron Shuker, Nigel Heseltine
c. 1935
© 2011, HVACR Heritage Centre Canada. All Rights Reserved.


The Chronotherm employed mechanical/electric switching

The Chronotherm employed mechanical/electric switching, long before electronic and digital switching devices were available.

G. Leslie Oliver, Mark Dorlandt Photography.
Ron Shuker, Nigel Heseltine
c. 1935
© 2011, HVACR Heritage Centre Canada. All Rights Reserved.


Learning Objectives

The Learning Objective of this Learning Object is to help teenagers, and others, understand how temperature controls evolved in the years leading up to the digital daily setback thermostat of today, which automatically pre-sets all home temperatures, 24 hours a day seven days a week.

1.) What is one of the most famous and popular icons of room temperature control, what anniversary did it recently mark, and what was the name of the company that manufactured it? (Your parents may well have had one on their wall.)

2.) Warren Johnson designed and developed one of the first of what we now call the “room thermostat,” which he called an electric “tele-thermoscope,” in what year, using what elements?

3.) The Chronotherm was an elegant, gilded, miniature grandfather-style clock that became a popular self-starting electric room thermostat in what decade of the 20th century? And what technologies did it feature?

4.) What changes in society and within the family do you think occurred because of the Chronotherm automatic temperature control and others devices like it, particularly among the well-to-do who could afford these latest gadgets’?

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