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Posts Tagged: "Nation Inventor’s Hall Of Fame"

Spandex Patent Lands Inventor Joseph Shivers in the HOF

The synthetic elastic fiber known as spandex, a name which comes from an anagram of ‘expands,’ is used in a wide range of clothing and apparel from sportswear to casual clothing to undergarments. Spandex also has applications in medical dressings such as diapers and bandages… This Tuesday, February 27th, marks the 56th anniversary of the issue of the original spandex patent. The inventor of spandex, Joseph C. Shivers, Jr., is a 2018 inductee into the National Inventors Hall of Fame… His induction to the National Inventors Hall of Fame comes posthumously, but modern society continues to reap the benefits of Shivers’ inability to let go of a problem many years ago.

Content Delivery Networks: Dan Lewin and Tom Leighton solve the “World Wide Wait”

Content delivery networks (CDNs), distributed networks involving proxy servers and data centers to provide high availability of content, are becoming increasingly valuable as Internet users continue to demand instant access to files or streaming media… Currently, the world’s largest CDN is Akamai, a CDN and cloud services provider based in Cambridge, MA, which operates 216,000 servers across 120 countries and within more than 1,500 networks to deliver up to 30 percent of Internet traffic worldwide. The success of Akamai’s business is largely based on the foundation of an innovative leap in Internet architecture developed by a professor and a student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Both Tom Leighton and Daniel Lewin are members of the 2017 class inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Today, August 22nd, marks the 17th anniversary of the issue of the patent for which Leighton and Lewin have been recognized as major pioneers in the field of CDNs. The work of both of these innovators continues to serve as a basis for perhaps the most successful firm in the CDN space currently.

Evolution of Gas Sensors: Beatrice Hicks creates device to measure gas in critical industrial applications

Inventor, Beatrice Hicks, is both a 2017 inductee into the National Inventors Hall of Fame as well as one of America’s truly trailblazing women engineers, one of the first to enter the field of technological development in the mid-20th century. Hicks would go on to become instrumental in the founding of the Society of Women Engineers and her story is a wonderful reminder of the power of both a good education and the ability to believe in one’s self… Hicks’ major innovation in gas sensor tech is outlined by U.S. Patent No. 3046369, titled Device for Sensing Gas Density and issued July 24th, 1962. It claimed, in a density system, a chamber containing gas, a hollow case with an interior cavity in communication with the chamber, a sealed expansible and contractible bellows mounted within the hollow case and in communication with gas contained in the chamber, and an actuating portion to actuate an output means when the bellows moves to a critical position in response to the pressure-versus-temperature function of the gas.

Evolution of Tech: Iver Anderson gets the lead out of electronics solder

Soldering, the process by which two items are joined together by melting a filler metal with a low melting point and pouring liquid metal onto the joint, is a process which is used in many important metalworking processes today, from manufacturing electronics to installing plumbing pipes. Evidence of primitive soldering techniques, however, extend back thousands of years to sites from ancient Mesopotamia.

Evolution of Drywall: Augustine Sackett’s gypsum board now used in 97% of new home construction

May 22nd, marked the 123rd anniversary of the issue of an early and important patent covering a drywall product for building construction. Its inventor, American-born Augustine Sackett, was a 2017 inductee into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. With the anniversary of the issue of this seminal patent in the field of building construction upon us, we’ll take a look back today at the history of gypsum use across the world and how Sackett’s innovation completely changed the American home building industry.

Evolution of the Transistor: Shockley, Bardeen and Brattain discover foundation of modern electronics in 1947

One of the foundational elements of all electronic devices today is the transistor, a semiconductor device including three terminals which is capable of amplifying an electric current or voltage which is applied to one of the terminals and output through another terminal. It’s no understatement to say that modern electronic devices couldn’t function without a component that can process electrical signals in the manner accomplished by a transistor. Yesterday’s transistors have largely been replaced by today’s integrated circuits, which are capable of much more complex processing of electrical signals, but the discovery of the transistor was a huge turning point in the electronics industry of the mid-20th century… April 4th marks the 67th anniversary of the issue date for one of two patents for which this trio of innovators has been inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Allene Jeanes, HOF class of 2017, discovered life-saving dextran and food-thickening xanthan gum

65 years ago today, American chemical researcher Allene Jeanes was issued a patent for a polysaccharide innovation which had major implications for the U.S. military, helping to save the lives of soldiers injured on the front lines of the Korean War… If this were the only contribution made by Jeanes to the body of chemical science and engineering knowledge, that might well have been enough to inclusion in the National Inventors Hall of Fame. However, Jeanes is also the pioneer behind another chemical innovation involving polysaccharides, discovering an emulsifier and food stabilizer — Xanthan Gum — which is found in the ingredient list of a great deal of processed foods available in grocery stores today.

Thomas E. Murray: The Inventor who powered New York City

American inventor and businessman Thomas E. Murray is the pioneer behind many of the foundational elements of the modern day electrical grid, from the design of power plants that produced electricity and distributed it efficiently to insulated electrical cable to electric fuse boxes… Murray is also the great grandfather of Hilary Geary Ross — the wife of soon to be Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. Perhaps a tenuous (or maybe fortuitous) connection to the man who will soon be in charge of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (an agency of the Commerce Department), but when we started reading about the significant contributions made byMurray we decided we had to profile this giant of American innovation.

Evolution of Tech: Roger Bacon’s high-performance carbon fibers find widespread use for thermal, mechanical properties

October 25th, will mark the 56th anniversary of the issue of the seminal patent for high-performance carbon fibers, which were invented by Roger Bacon, a 2016 inductee into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. This American physicist’s chance discovery of ultra-thin, incredibly strong fibers composed primarily of carbon led to great business success for Bacon’s employer, Union Carbide, as well as multiple recognitions of Bacon’s own work which kickstarted development into carbon materials which continue even today… The patent for which Bacon is inducted into the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame is U.S. Patent No. 2957756, entitled Filamentary Graphite and Method for Producing the Same. Issued October 25th, 1960, it claimed a method for producing filamentary graphite by confining a graphite rod surmounting a carbon block within a closed pressure vessel which has a means for introducing inert gases, striking a direct current arc between the rod and the block while maintaining a pressure level within the vessel between 1,150 pounds per square inch (psi) and 1,400 psi to effect vaporization of the rod onto the block to form a boule, cooling the boule, fracturing the boule and removing the graphite filaments contained within the boule.

EpiPen gives doses of life-saving epinephrine for nearly 50 years

The EpiPen continues to be a highly sought consumer medical device. Last September, Bloomberg reported that EpiPen sales had eclipsed $1 billion per year, proving to be a true cash cow for current owner Mylan (NASDAQ:MYL). This year, the National Inventors Hall of Fame inducted one of the masterminds behind the first line of defense most people have against serious complications from allergies: the EpiPen. This June 28th marks the 49th anniversary of the date of issue of the patent for which Sheldon Kaplan has been inducted into the Hall of Fame.

The Evolution of Food Safety: HOF Inventors John Silliker and Welton Taylor tamed Salmonella

The 2016 inductee class for the National Inventors Hall of Fame includes two microbiologists whose contributions to the field of food safety have helped to keep many foodborne pathogens, especially Salmonella, in check: John H. Silliker and Welton I. Taylor. These two scientists worked together to develop more effective monitoring techniques for food products in response to the growing concerns in the mid-20th century regarding Salmonella outbreaks, especially those which hit children the hardest. With the anniversaries for important patents issued to both of these food safety engineers having passed in early March, we thought we’d visit their scientific contributions from in our Evolution of Technology series here on IPWatchdog.

In Memory: Remembering Hall of Fame Inventors One Final Time

Mid way through the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony the celebration paused for the sad annual ritual of remembering Hall of Fame inductees who have passed away since last year’s ceremony. We too would like to take a moment to recognize these giants of innovation. With this in mind, and in an attempt to recognize these groundbreaking innovators, below we highlight their inventions that lIed to their Hall of Fame Inductions.