Various scientists and engineers contributed to the development of internal combustion engines. In 1791, John Barber developed the gas turbine. In 1794 Thomas Mead patented a gas engine. Also in 1794, Robert Street patented an internal combustion engine, which was also the first to use liquid fuel, and built an engine around that time. In 1798, John Stevens built the first American internal combustion engine. In 1807, French engineers Nicéphore Niépce (who went on to invent photography) and Claude Niépce ran a prototype internal combustion engine, using controlled dust explosions, the Pyréolophore. This engine powered a boat on the Saône river, France. The same year, the Swiss engineer François Isaac de Rivaz built an internal combustion engine ignited by an electric spark. In 1823, Samuel Brown patented the first internal combustion engine to be applied industrially.
In 1854 in the UK, the Italian inventors Eugenio Barsanti and Felice Matteucci obtained a certification "Obtaining motive power by the explosion of gases". In 1857 the Great Seal Patent Office conceded them patent No.1655 for the invention of an Improved Apparatus for Obtaining Motive Power from Gases. Barsanti and Matteucci obtained other patents for the same invention in France, Belgium and Piedmont between 1857 and 1859.In 1860, Belgian Jean Joseph Etienne Lenoir produced a gas-fired internal combustion engine. In 1864, Nikolaus Otto patented the first atmospheric gas engine. In 1872, American George Brayton invented the first commercial liquid-fuelled internal combustion engine. In 1876, Nikolaus Otto, working with Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach, patented the compressed charge, four-cycle engine. In 1879, Karl Benz patented a reliable two-stroke gasoline engine. Later, in 1886, Karl Benz began the first commercial production of motor vehicles with the internal combustion engine. In 1892, Rudolf Diesel developed the first compressed charge, compression ignition engine. In 1926, Robert Goddard launched the first liquid-fueled rocket. In 1939, the Heinkel He 178 became the world's first jet aircraft.