Friday, May 30, 2008

Teflon was discovered accidentally

Teflon is the trade name for polytetrefluoroethylene, which was discovered in 1938 by American chemist Roy J. Plunkett. He discovered the material accidentally while working to develop a non-toxic refrigerant from gaseous tetrafluoroethylene. Instead, he came up with a waxy white powder which indicated that the molecules polymerized or combined with each other.

Plunkett went on to develop a method for producing the powder commercially. Teflon was first used for producing gaskets and valves needed in the development of the atomic bomb. The first Teflon-coated muffin tins and frying pans were sold in 1960. Teflon is now used for artificial cornea, substitute bones for chin, nose, hip, and knee joints and other anatomical plants.

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