The Belle Isle gas turbine was installed in 1949 and was the first gas turbine built in the United States for the purpose of generating electric power. Its low cost and consistency aroused considerable interest in the electric utility industry, both here and abroad.
In 1942, University of California, Davis (UCD) biologist, Jack Hanna recognized the need for breeding tomato varieties that ripen uniformly and withstand the rigors of mechanical harvesting. In 1949, UCD agricultural engineer Coby Lorenzen and Hanna began developing a mechanical tomato harvester. Parallel efforts by others, notably those started in 1957 by agricultural engineer Bill Stout and horticulturist Stan Ries of Michigan State University, eventually resulted in several different harvesting mechanisms. In the late 1950s, UCD agricultural engineer Steven J.
Brothers Cyril and Louis Keller designed and built the first small, lightweight, three-wheel, front-end loader in their machinist-blacksmith shop in Rothsay, Minnesota. A local farmer wanted to mechanize cleaning manure from his obstacle-filled, two-story turkey barn. The machine, first used in 1957, was able to turn completely around within its own length. Melroe Manufacturing Company, Gwinner, ND purchased the rights to the Keller loader and hired the Kellers to continue development of the loader in 1958.
The First Agricultural Tractor Roll-Over Protection Structure (Rops) In The USA Resulted From Research By Lloyd H. Lamouria, Ralph R. Parks And Coby Lorensen At The Agricultural Engineering Department Of The University Of California At Davis. It Was Designed And Successfully Tested In The Summer Of 1956. It Was Exhibited And Reported At The Annual Meeting Of The Pacific Coast Section Of The American Society Of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE) In December 1956. Warren I. Hanson, Safety Coordinator, N.
On April 12, 1955, Dr. Jonas Salk, a slightly built, forty-year-old research professor from the University of Pittsburgh, became a hero. On that morning, before one hundred and fifty news reporters and five hundred scientists and physicians crammed into an auditorium at the University of Michigan, “amid fanfare and drama far more typical of a Hollywood premiere than a medical meeting,” according to an account in The New York Times, it was announced that Dr. Salk had developed a vaccine that had been found effective in preventing poliomyelitis.
During the winter of 1957-58, Earl E. Bakken developed the first wearable transistorized pacemaker, the request of heart surgeon, Dr. C. Walton Lillehei. As earlier pacemakers were AC-powered, this battery-powered device liberated patients from their power-cord tethers. The wearable pacemaker was a significant step in the evolution to fully-implantable units.
On 16 December 1953, the first television broadcast in Western Canada was transmitted from this site by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's CBUT Channel 2. The engineering experience gained here was instrumental in the subsequent establishment of the more than one thousand public and private television broadcasting sites that serve Western Canada today.
On 12 September 1958, Jack S. Kilby demonstrated the first working integrated circuit to managers at Texas Instruments. This was the first time electronic components were integrated onto a single substrate. This seminal device consisted of a phase shift oscillator circuit on a tiny bar of germanium measuring 7/16” by 1/16” (11.1 mm by 1.6 mm). Today, integrated circuits are the fundamental building blocks of virtually all electronic equipment.
At this facility on 20 December 1951 electricity was first generated from the heat produced by a sustained nuclear reaction providing steam to a turbine generator. This event inaugurated the nuclear power industry in the United States. On 4 June 1953 EBR-I provided the first proof of "breeding" capability, producing one atom of nuclear fuel for each atom burned, and later produced electricity using a plutonium core reactor.
The demonstrated success in space flight is the result of electronic technology developed at Cape Canaveral, the J. F. Kennedy Space Center, and other sites. A wide variety of advances in radar tracking, data telemetry, instrumentation, space-to-ground communications, on-board guidance, and real-time computation were employed to support the U.S. space program. These and other electronic developments provided infrastructure necessary for the successful landing of men on the moon in July 1969 and their safe return to earth.
Founded in 1957, Raychem Corporation was the first company to successfully apply the new science of radiation chemistry to commercial use. This accomplishment led to the creation of tough new materials and high-performance products such as irradiated polyethylene insulated wire and heat-…Read More
The integration of pump and turbine was the first of many to be installed in power-plant systems in the United States. It was the largest and most powerful in the world. As a "pump storage" unit in the Tennessee Valley Authority's system, it effected significant economies in the generation of…Read More
The IBM 350 disk drive storage development led to the breakthrough of on-line computer systems by providing the first storage device with random access to large volumes of data. Since its introduction on September 4, 1956, it has become the primary computer bulk-storage medium, displacing…Read More
The world's first high-speed, dockside container-handling cranes reduced ship turnaround time from three weeks to eighteen hours. They became the model and set the standard for future designs worldwide. In service January 7, 1959, the A-frame cranes built at Encinal Terminals in Alameda,…Read More
This hydraulic closed-die press, among the largest fabrication tools in the world, has had a profound influence in America's leading role in commercial aircraft, military aircraft, and space technology. As part of the same Heavy Press Program that created the Mesta press, the Wyman-Gordon press…Read More
The DWP was the first mechanized, compact service-line trencher developed for laying underground water lines between the street-main and the house. This machine, first produced in 1949, replaced manual digging, thus making installation of running water and indoor plumbing affordable for the…Read More
Designed by Alden “Doc” Laborde, Mr. Charlie is the first offshore drilling rig that was fully transportable, submersible and self-sufficient, allowing it to drill more than 200 oil and gas wells along the Gulf Coast between 1954 and 1986.
Laborde, a young U.S. Navy engineer, had the…Read More
This 50,000-ton die-forging press is among the largest fabrication tools in the world. It was designed and built for the U.S. Air Force by the Mesta Machine Company of Pittsburgh, following the discovery of a 30,000-ton press used by the Germans in World War II (later acquired by the Soviet…Read More
The Dorton Arena was the first use of a cable-supported roof system in the world. Commissioned in 1949 by North Carolina State Fair manager J.S. Dorton, the new building was intended to be a livestock judging pavilion. Architect Matthew Nowicki (1910 - 1950) proposed a structure that…
From 1956 to 1993, the GE Re-entry Systems facility was home to thousands of engineers and technicians who solved the problem of vehicles successfully reentering the Earth’s atmosphere. As described by aerospace pioneer Theodore Von Karman, “ Reentry… is perhaps the most difficult problem one…Read More
A variety of mechanical feeders, including drag-chain conveyors and rotary pocket feeders, historically have been used to volumetrically control the flow of fuel to coal pulverizers on power generators. Most power generation in the United States has relied on burning fossil fuels in steam…Read More
The Mackinac (pronounced "Mack-in-awe") Bridge (1957) spans the Straits of Mackinac between Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, connecting the Lower and Upper peninsulas of Michigan. Prior to the construction of the bridge, a fleet of nine ferries would carry as many as 9,000 vehicles per day, with…Read More