The Society of Plastics Engineers forms in Detroit.
Glass-reinforced plastics began appearing in the 1940s, mainly initially for military use in World War II. An early application in the U.S. war effort was to lock the triggers of unexploded bombs. Military vehicles on the ground and in the air placed a premium on high strength and light weight, spurring development of thermoset composites. It was discovered that glass fibers with their high theoretical strength could be applied to the composites with great effect. Thermoset polyesters were key to the growing sector, but by 1956, as reported in an SPE technical paper, work had begun on epoxy-glass composites.
Silly Putty became the commercial name of the polymeric material that felt like modelling clay but could bounce, stretch and copy printed images when pressed against them. The fast-selling product logged $6 million in sales that first year.