Operating since 1972, Eel River, New Brunswick is home to the world's first commercial solid state High Voltage Direct Current converter station. This 320 MW interconnection facility, built by Canadian General Electric and NB Power, incorporates high current silicon solid state thyristors to convert alternating current from Hydro Quebec to direct current and back to alternating, allowing asynchronous, stable power transfers to serve New Brunswick's Power's customers.
The Voyager explorers, which provided scientists and the world with the first detailed pictures of faraway planets, were designed and tested during 1972 to 1977. The two most intelligent machines ever built in the NASA space program, the explorers were launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., in 1977. Voyager 2 was launched first on August 20, followed by Voyager 1 on September 5.
The ABACUS II, designed and built by Texas Instruments, was the first practical automated production machine for the assembly of integrated circuits. Using heat and pressure, it bonded fine gold wire to microscopic contacts on the silicon chip and pin connections on the package.
The ABACUS II could maintain a positioning accuracy of ± 0.00025 inch while bonding up to 375 devices an hour. Following the success of this prototype, almost 1,000 ABACUS II wire bonders were built, making the economical mass production of integrated circuits a reality.