Clip from the patent for low density nonwoven sheets
Patent for Low Density Nonwoven Sheets
(U.S. Patent and Trademark Office)

The path from patent to product is rarely linear.

As Dr. Memeger explains in his interview, "the purpose of a patent is to protect those technologies which you might find to offer utility for products."

Dr. Memeger earned fourteen patents during his career at DuPont. In 1985, he was granted a patent for his method of producing low-density nonwoven sheets of synthetic polymers. Memeger found that by introducing pores into paper-like sheets comprised of something like Nomex—a product similar to Kevlar and prized for its flame resistance— what resulted was an expanded material that looked like fabric; was very lightweight; and that maintained, or even increased, its flame-resistant properties.

In this clip, Dr. Memeger describes how such properties are useful in something like aircraft seating and discusses the method covered by his patent:



The banner image includes a detail from Toward Disharmony II, a painting by Wesley Memeger Jr. Images in this digital exhibit (unless otherwise noted) are from the private collection of Wesley Memeger Jr.