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John Haven Emerson - Famous Inventor

: John Haven Emerson
: 5-February-1906
: 4-February-1997
: United States
: Self Educated
: Inventor

About Inventor

John Haven Emerson (1906 – 1997) was an American inventor of biomedical devices, specializing in respiratory equipment. He is perhaps best remembered for his work in improving the iron lung.

Early Life

John Haven Emerson inventor of iron lung was a very famous scientist and biologist of America. He is known best for his invention of iron lung and it can be said that this invention led him to be very famous scientist of the field of biology. He was an American by the nationality and descent pattern.  He was born in the year of 1906 in the month of February on 5th day and his place of birth was as New York, which is located in United States of America. There is not any kind of specific information available about his life span of educational period and other such things before starting of formal career but it is worth to know further things about him.


It is clear from his life period that he earned education in the field of biology and biomedical sciences so after that, he started formal career in that field. In the year of 1928, when he was just 22 years of age, he started his initial work when he got a machine shop of rudimentary. He planned something big and as a result started his work as getting a warehouse in Harvard Square. He moved all the equipment of rudimentary machinery shop and other related materials to that ware house and started formal biomedical research in the field.

Inventor of Iron Lung

As his father was also from the field of health sciences and was a police commissioner of the New York, he suggested him to build any artificial respirator or something like as a modern iron lung. He started the work on this thing in the year of 1930 and completed it just after one year of work in 1931, when he was just 25 years of age.

Iron Lung

As mentioned above, he started the work of its invention on his father’s advice but later on worked for betterment of its design. He succeeded in this thing and came up with modern form of an artificial respirator or also said as an iron lung. Iron lung is also termed as negative pressure ventilator sometimes but it can be said that, in modern times, it is only known by this second name. It can be said as a special form of ventilator which is used for purpose of breathing or to make someone breathe artificially, when its original system of lungs is not working and there is a danger of death. This thing normally happens when the ability of any person to breathe gets weakened or the muscles used for that purpose, does not play their role properly.


He died in the year of 1997 in the month of February on 4th day. He was almost 91 years of age at the time of his death.