Melted Chocolate Bar Inside a Researchers Pocket was the idea behind the Microwave.

Like many of today’s great inventions, the microwave oven was a by-product of another technology. It was during a radar-related research project around 1946 that Dr. Percy Spencer, a self-taught engineer with the Raytheon Corporation, noticed something very unusual. He was testing a new vacuum tube called a magnetron when he discovered that the candy bar in his pocket had melted. This intrigued Dr. Spencer, so he tried another experiment. This time he placed some popcorn kernels near the tube and, perhaps standing a little farther away, he watched with an inventive sparkle in his eye as the popcorn sputtered, cracked and popped all over his lab.

 Doctor Spencer continued at Raytheon as a senior consultant until he died at the age of 76. At the time of his death, Dr. Spencer held 150 patents and was considered one of the world’s leading experts in the field of microwave energy, despite his lack of a high school education. On September 18, 1999, Dr. Percy LaBaron Spencer was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame and took his place in history alongside such great inventors as Thomas Edison, the Wright Brothers and George Washington Carver.

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