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Spencer F. Silver ( 1941 - )  Category ( Chemists ) [suggest a correction]

Spencer F Silver was born in 1941 and destined to make his handprint known on the world of inventions. He earned his BS from Arizona State University in 1962 before going on to earn a doctorate for his work in organic chemistry from the University of Colorado.

After graduation, Spencer joined 3M’s Central Research Labs as a senior chemist. He remains there today working not surprisingly, with adhesive technology. He is also an accomplished painter working within the creative realms provided by pastels and oils.

Spencer F Silver was interested in adhesives and he began working on a product that wouldn’t realize immediate success but would later provide a phenomenal tool in office supplies. Silver’s invention for the Post-it Notes may not have been realized if it hadn’t been for the help of Arthur Fry but because of Fry’s interest in an adhesive product that Silver was pitching, ideas flew and the Post-it Notes became a 3M reality.

Silver originally had the idea for the adhesive made of tiny acrylic spheres but his original presentations called for the spheres to be applied by a spray on solution. This spray could have been applied to bulletin boards and then notices or formal bulletins could be applied to the board. The surface could then be reused again and again for future postings.

With Fry’s ideas stemming from the fact that paper bookmarks refused to stay in place in church hymnals, the two men joined together to form the idea of Post-it Notes. 3M was ready to pay attention to Silver’s adhesive. The company then developed the design machines to produce the popular post-it notes used across the world today.

Spencer Silver remains with 3M and has realized phenomenal success beyond his invention. In his lifetime, he has been awarded with over twenty US patents but none have achieved the recognition that he earned and deserved with the Post-it-Notes.

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