The Invention of the Metal Detector

Trouvé developed a hand–held device for locating and extracting metal objects such as bullets from human patients.

Inspired by Trouvé, Alexander Graham Bell developed a similar device in an attempt to locate a bullet lodged in the chest of American President James Garfield in 1881. The metal detector worked correctly, but the attempt was unsuccessful because the device was confused by the metal coil springs in the bed that Garfield was lying on.

© Haydn Thompson 2017