The forerunner of the aerosol can was invented by Erik Rotheim of Norway. On November 23, 1927, Rotheim patented a can with a valve and propellant systems - it could hold and dispense liquids.
The first aerosol can (a can than contains a propellant [a liquefied gas like flurocarbon] and has a spray nozzle) was invented in 1944 by Lyle David Goodloe and W.N. Sullivan. They were working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture and were trying to find a way to spray and kill malaria carrying mosquitos during World War II for the soldiers overseas. The "clog-free" spray valve was invented by Robert H. Abplanal in 1953.
The first spray paint was invented by Edward H. Seymour in 1949. Seymour's wife Bonnie had given him the idea of an aerosol applicator for paint. The first spray paint he developed was aluminum colored. Seymour formed the company, Seymour of Sycamore, Inc. of Chicago, USA, which is still in operation.
Once upon a time, none of those things existed. Someone invented each one of them. Someone saw a problem, and, through brainstorming and (usually lots of) trial and error, came up with a solution to it. Or they took someone else's invention and saw a way to improve on it or use it for something other than for what it had been designed. Or they created a process for completing an action more simply.
Some inventors remain on the tips of people's tongues. Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, Eli Whitney, and George Washington Carver are all well-remembered for their inventions. Others, such as Nikola Tesla, Richard Trevithick, Marion O'Brien Donovan, Buela Louise Henry, and Ramón López Irizarry, are less well known for their contributions to society.
Consider these resources merely a place to begin your journey into inventions and the women and men who came up with the ideas for them.
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Inventions 2: The ImpactK-2 | Hands-On
In this lesson students focus on the process of inventing, particularly on what short- and long-term issues inventors must consider before developing an invention.
Build a Better PencilK-2 | Hands-On
This investigation uses a pencil to introduce the idea of planning and evaluating designs.
Thomas Edison for Kids6-8 | Audio
By studying Thomas Edison's life and inventions, students will develop a broader view of technology and how it is like and unlike science.
This lesson will highlight some of Leonardo's futuristic inventions, introducing the elements of machines.
Inventors and Innovators6-8
In this lesson, students explore the scientific enterprise and the contributions of diverse people.
Temple Grandin6-8 | Video
This is a lesson about being different and thinking differently. It focuses on the work of Temple Grandin, an animal behavior scientist who has autism, a brain condition of unknown cause that people are born with, and that makes them behave differently than other people.
Inventions of Necessity: Synthetic Rubber9-12
In this lesson, students explore the relationship between societal needs and technological development by examining the history and making of synthetic rubber.
Faster Higher Smarter6-8
In this lesson, students explore the science of sports and to make the connection of scientific principles to real world activities like sports.
National Engineers WeekK-12
This collection of resources will encourage the budding engineers and interest those who aren't sure why engineering is relevant to their lives.
3-D Bioprinting (6-12)
Adam Feinberg at Carnegie Mellon University has come up with a technique that expands the use of 3-D printing technology and could one day allow researchers to print heart tissue.
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