In light Kundt's name is widely known for his inquiries in anomalous dispersion, not only in liquids and vapours, but even in metals, which he obtained in very thin films by means of a laborious process of electrolytic deposition upon platinized glass.
The stills were formerly completely bricked in, so that the vapours should be kept fully heated until they escaped to the condenser, but since the introduction of the " cracking process," the upper part has usually been left exposed to the air.
In the American petroleum refineries it is found that sufficient cracking can be produced by slow distillation in stills of which the upper part is sufficiently cool to allow of the condensation of the vapours of the less volatile hydrocarbons, the condensed liquid thus falling back into the heated body of oil.
The steam operates by carrying the vapours away to the condenser as fast as they are generated, the injury to the products resulting from their remaining in contact with the highly-heated surface of the still being thus prevented.
The vapours from the still pass through a condenser into a receiver, which is in communication with the exhauster.