Teflon® (polytetrafluoroethene), PTFE) transformed the way products in the 20th and 21st century were made and used. What makes it so useful is that it can be manipulated and applied in many different ways. You may immediately think of it’s use in coating cookware so it doesn’t stick, but Teflon can also be used for coating bullets, wire and fabric. Because of its nonstick qualities, water resistance, heat resistance and durability, Teflon® has been used in many everyday products, as well as played an important role in the US Space Program, and used as an insulator and lubricator between the steel and copper parts that are inside the Statue of Liberty.
The discovery of Teflon®
It turns out this game-changing, indispensable material was accidentally discovered. This excerpt from “Random Facts About Teflon” tells the interesting tale:
In 1938, former New Carlisle, Ohio, resident Roy J. Plunkett took up a role within DuPont, New Jersey. Plunkett was assigned the task of finding a non-toxic, non-flammable coolant to be used in refrigerators. After a number of trials, he stumbled upon the slippery powder we now know as Teflon®.
During World War 2, designers of the atomic bomb used Teflon® to manufacture gaskets and linings which could resist the bomb’s corrosive nature.
In 1954, French engineers found, that by coating cookware in Teflon®, they would become nonstick and be far easier to clean. This discovery led to the widespread use of Teflon® for kitchenware today.
For his discovery, Plunkett, who retired from DuPont in 1975, was enshrined in the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
NCS offers a variety of processes in order to meet our customers’ needs. In particular, we have the capabilities to mold and machine PTFE (Teflon®) using automatic and semi-automated processes. From PTFE ball seats, gaskets and O-rings to OEM parts, we use a variety of virgin resin compounds along with special blends to meet our customer’s requirements.
Contact us today to learn more about our PTFE offerings.