William Le Roy Emmet

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William LeRoy Emmet

Birthplace: New Rochelle, Westchester County, New York, United States
Death: September 26, 1941 (82)
Erie, Erie County, Pennsylvania, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of William Jenkins Emmet and Julia Colt Emmet
Brother of Colonel Robert Temple Emmet, 9th U.S. Cavalry; Richard Stockton Emmet; C. Temple Emmet; Jane Emmet de Glehn; Devereux Emmet and 2 others

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About William Le Roy Emmet

William LeRoy Emmet was an accomplished engineer employed by General Electric. A graduate of the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, he was a pioneer in the areas of current electricity and power generation, best known for his work with steam turbines, mercury vapor, and electric ship propulsion.



William Le Roy Emmet (July 10, 1858 -September 26, 1941) was an electrical engineer who made major contributions to alternating current power systems including the design of large rotary converters.

He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1881. He joined the Edison General Electric Company in 1891. Three years later, after a merger, he became employee of General Electric Company (GE). Emmet was a leading advocate of the electrical propulsion of ships from turbines. His systems were first used in American ships during World War I. He also developed the mercury vapour turbine system for electric power production.

He received the AIEE Edison Medal in 1919 for inventions and developments of electrical apparatus and primo movers. He received the Elliott Cresson Medal of the Franklin Institute in 1920 and was elected to the National Academy of Sciences. Emmet worked at GE into his 70's and held 122 patents.


Emmet's autobiography, Autobiography of an engineer, was published by Fort Orange Press in 1930 or 1931.

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William Le Roy Emmet's Timeline

July 10, 1859
New Rochelle, Westchester County, New York, United States
September 26, 1941
Age 82
Erie, Erie County, Pennsylvania, United States