A Brief History of Plastics

We aren’t the ones who invented the first man-made Plastic in 1862, that honor goes to Alexander Parkes and the creation of Parkesine, an organic material derived from cellulose that once heated could be molded, and retained its shape when cooled. Today Parkesine is known as Celluloid, and you can regard it as the first thermoplastic.

A breakdown of important dates in the world of Plastics would look something like this:

Timeline - Thermosetting Plastics, Thermoplastics & Vanderveer Industrial Plastics
1862 – Display of Parkesine, predecessor of celluloid (cellulose nitrate), at the 1862 Great International Exhibition in London
1909 - Thermosetting Phenol-Formaldehyde Resin comes on the market as the first true plastic and is trade named Bakelite. It was developed by Belgian-born chemist Leo Hendrik Baekeland in New York in 1907. 
1935 - Low-density polyethylene or LDPE - Reginald Gibson and Eric Fawcett
1936 - Acrylic or Polymethyl Methacrylate
1937 - Polyurethanes trade named Igamid for plastics materials and Perlon for fibers.
1938 - Polystyrene made practical
1938 - Polytetrafluoroethylene or PTFE trade named Teflon
1939 - Nylon and Neoprene, considered a replacement for silk and a synthetic rubber
1941 - Polyethylene Terephthalate or Pet
1942 - Low Density Polyethylene
1942 - Unsaturated Polyester also called PET patented by John Rex Whinfield and James Tennant Dickson
1951 – Vanderveer Industrial Plastics founded in Los Angeles, Ca.
1951 - High-density polyethylene or HDPE, trade named Marlex
1951 - Polypropylene or PP
1954 - Styrofoam, a type of foamed polystyrene foam was invented by Ray McIntire for Dow Chemicals
1964 - Polyimide
1970 - Thermoplastic Polyester this includes trademarked Dacron, Mylar, Melinex, Teijin, and Tetoron
1970 – Vanderveer Industrial Plastics relocates to Santa Fe Springs, Ca.
1978 - Linear Low Density Polyethylene
1985 - Liquid Crystal Polymers
1997 – Vanderveer Industrial Plastics relocates to an even larger facility in Placentia, Ca.
2012 – Vanderveer Industrial Plastics, Inc. restructured as Vanderveer Industrial Plastics, LLC.
2013 – Construction completed on a Temperature Controlled Machining Cell at Vanderveer Industrial Plastics.

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