To this day, the spark plug remains the pivotal component of any internal combustion engine. It provides the electric spark in a combustion chamber, thus igniting the compressed fuel and air mixture. This earliest known instance of this concept was executed by Alessandro Volta in 1777. It wasn't until almost a century later that Jean Joseph Etienne Lenoir incorporated an electric spark plug in his gas engine and is credited with inventing the spark plug. Towards the end of the 19th century, Nikola Tesla and Robert Bosch were two of three individuals granted patents related to spark plugs. In 1902, one of Bosch's engineers developed the first commercial spark plug, and, along with the evolution of the automobile, many in the field worked to perfect and increase the efficiency of the spark plug.