|09 of 13. A French Physicist named Augustin
Fresnel invented the lens that would be installed in lighthouses
in Europe, North America and the Hawaiian Islands. The Fresnel lens are very efficient at concentrating light and can throw a beam 20 miles out to sea.
This lens design is considered First Order or non-flashing. After manufacture in France, the lens was shipped around Cape Horn, up the West Coast and hoisted 200 feet from the ship's deck by a hand operated derrick to be reassembled in the tower. The Fresnel lens installed in the Cape Meares Lighthouse are 12 feet tall, 6 feet wide and weigh 2,000 pounds.
The first light source for the lighthouse was a fire-wick kerosene lamp that sent light through the red and clear Fresnel lens to create a red flash every minute that was visible 20 miles out to sea.