The Plastics Academy has announced five posthumous inductees to the Plastics Hall of Fame.
Officers of the Washington-based Plastics Academy will present the honor to family members at an Oct. 21 ceremony at the National Plastics Center & Museum's 20th anniversary celebration. The Plastics Hall of Fame is based at NPCM in Leominster, Mass.
Posthumous inductees are:
Rexford H. Bradt, who founded compounder Fiberfil Corp., now DSM Engineering Plastics in Evansville, Ind. He holds 10 U.S. patents regarding the compounding and processing of thermoplastics.
After World War II, Bradt invented the process of using glass fibers to reinforce thermoplastics. He also invented the first commercially available emulsion compound (polystyrene) in 1952, and the first commercially available pultrusion compound (nylon) in 1954.
Edwin L. Hobson III, who sold resin for Bakelite Corp. and invented plastic body armor and other innovations during World War II.
Nicknamed ``Hobby,'' he was the first sales engineer for a thermoplastic resin, polystyrene, at Bakelite, which got its start in thermoset phenolics. He enlisted in the U.S. Army during World War II, becoming chief of the plastics section in the Military Planning Division of the Office of the Quartermaster. He earned the Legion of Merit from the secretary of war for being personally responsible for the role that plastics played in the war.
After the war he helped transfer early technical information from England and Germany to the fledgling U.S. plastics industry.
Hobson retired in 1968 after a career at Monsanto Co., but that same year he co-founded Aladdin Synergetics Inc. in Nashville, Tenn., to make plastic food-holding systems for hospitals and airlines.
In the 1980s he founded another company, called Abanaki, that makes industrial belt skimmers using polymer-coated fabric belts.
Theodore S. Stoughton, who promoted the plastics industry in Connecticut, was active for more than 40 years in the Society of Plastics Engineers and was a longtime supporter of the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.
Stoughton was founder and managing director of the Connecticut Plastics Council. He was chairman of the first three statewide expositions, called Plasti/Conn.
He owned or worked for a number of plastics companies in Connecticut, including Magrey Manufacturing Co. in Moosup, Curtis Plastics Co. in Cheshire, Waterbury Cos. in Waterbury and Bipel International Inc. of Trumbull.
In trade association work, he was twice president of SPE's Connecticut Section. He was active with the Plastics Education Foundation.
Stoughton supported education. He chaired the Industrial Technology Advisory Committee at Central Connecticut University, which developed a plastics program. He also helped create a plastics laboratory at Emmett O'Brien Regional Vocational-Technical School.
Frank H. Shaw, who was the principal developer of transfer molding when it was invented in 1926 by a team of phenolic molding experts for Shaw Insulation Co.
Shaw received the John Wesley Hyatt Award in 1943 for achievements in the plastics industry, including transfer molding. He earned the U.S. Army Citation for work on the M-52 mortar fuses and firing pins for the U.S. Navy.
He was one of 10 people who formed the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. in 1937.
In 1958, Shaw received the Plastics Pioneers Association's highest honor, the Most Traveled Shirt Award.
Alexander S. Zimmerman, who was an expert in cast phenolics, enjoyed a 57-year plastics career, from 1922-1979.
His career began when he traveled to Germany to bring back a process for making casein plastics to the United States. He founded Karolith Corp. to serve that market.
After he sold Karolith, Zimmerman was approached by Leo Baekeland, the Bakelite founder, to sell cast phenolic sheets, rods and tubes.
At that time Bakelite was shutting down a cast phenolic plant for lack of business. But after Zimmerman's success at selling inventory, the company decided to keep the business open. He became manager of Bakelite's Cast Phenolic Division.
Zimmerman helped Bakelite develop phenolic cast resins used to make the atomic bomb. He also helped the U.S. Navy develop shatterproof lenses for gauges used on battleships.
Working with Edwin Land at Polaroid Corp., Zimmerman developed a method to analyze photoelastic stress using a special cast phenolic sheet and polarized light.
For information on attending the posthumous induction ceremony, and the NPCM anniversary celebration, call the museum in Leominster at (978) 537-9529.
The Plastics Academy is accepting nominations for living members for the Plastics Hall of Fame until Dec. 1. Induction of living members will take place June 26 in Chicago during NPE 2003. Contact the museum for nomination forms.