Machina Electrica was created by Bode in 1800, and first shown in his 1801 atlas. It represented an effort to emulate Nicolas-Louis de Lacaille
's invention of southern constellations, and lay between two of Lacaille's creations, La Fourneau (styled Apparatus Chemicus by Bode, and now called Fornax
), and Apparatus Sculptoris (now called Sculptor
). Although shown in a few atlases the designation was rarely used, and the constellation was formally discarded by the IAU when it established the modern list of official constellations in 1922.