Trivia

Hard

Super Glue Was Invented In Researchers’ Quest To Create?

Gun Sights
Synthetic Lacquer
Dental Fillings
Lubricant
A tube of Duro brand super glue.
Omegatron/Wikimedia

Answer: Gun Sights

There’s a long list of things discovered when the inventor was searching for something else and, among them, is cyanoacrylate adhesive, a substance you might better know simply as “super glue”.

In 1942, researchers at the Eastman Kodak company, led by Harry Coover, were tasked with creating a new clear plastic for military gun sights. They considered cyanoacrylates, but found that they were too sticky and rejected them.

Later they attempted to use the same compounds to create a heat-resistant plastic canopy for fighter jets. Again they were faced with the sticky-polymer problem, but this time Coover had an epiphany that launched an entire product line. It didn’t matter that they were failing at making the plastic they wanted, they’d discovered a pretty great glue.

Harry Coover went on to not only patent the substance for use as a glue, but also as a medical product; he wisely foresaw the utility of Super Glue as an emergency tissue adhesive material.

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