Developed in the 1930’s, two-part polymer epoxy resins are thermosetting plastics whereby two combined parts become solid during the curing process – the two parts consisting of adhesive and hardener. In 1934, German Paul Schlack first reported and patented the compound process involving the condensation of epoxides and amines. Used initially as dental fixtures, epoxies as we recognize them today were synthesized in 1936 by Dr. Pierre Castan of Switzerland and Dr. S.O. Greenlee of the USA.
Commercialization of the polymer was licensed by both doctors through separate agreements. Dr. Castan allowed his work to be licensed by Ciba in Switzerland, which in 1946, became the first company to commercialize the production of epoxy resin. Across the pond, Dr. Greenlee struck a deal with American firm Devoe & Raynolds, which was purchased by Shell Chemicals, and subsequently changed its name to Momentive Specialty Chemicals.
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