Technology: 10 Inventions We Use Today That Were Born During World War II


Wars bring death, hunger and destruction, among other chaotic elements, but they also generate the use of new technologies from which the future benefits. One of these cases is the Second World War: even today, many inventions generated between 1939 and 1945 are used.

And they cover not only the big situations, the events of life or death, but also other everyday ones, minimal, small, but important.

Let’s take a look at 10 inventions that were born during World War II and we continue to use today.

pressurized cabins

This type of aircraft had pressurized cabins

The cabin pressure system was created for the B-29 Superfortress, in 1944. The cockpit and nose sections were attached to the stern with a long pressurized tunnel. Before its existence, airplane crews suffered from hypoxia, altitude sickness and decompression sickness.

The Jerrycan (plastic fuel containers)

fuel containers

of german origin (the Allies called any German Jerry), these fuel containers were improved by the Americans using reverse engineering. Thanks to the Americans, a thicker plastic was used, adding handles (it has three) to be carried by more people and a release mechanism for a smooth and precise pouring of the content.


Alexander Fleming's creation saved millions of lives in World War II

the scottish scientist Alexander Fleming He discovered it in 1928, but the United States mass-produced it during World War II, helping to save several wounded with medical treatment. The drug reduced pain, increased the chances of survival and made it easier for nurses and doctors. For the Normandy landings alone, the United States produced 2.3 million doses. After the war, civilians also had access to the drug.

Reaction engines

factory in england

Although the English engineer of the Royal Air Force, Frank Whittle, filed the first patent for the jet engine in 1930, the Germans were the first to fly a jet plane, days before the invasion of Poland in 1939. By 1941, the Allies implemented them, increasing their speed, but with difficulties of handling and use of fuel. After the war they were greatly improved.

electronic computers

IBM's Harvard Mark I, the first electromechanical computer, had 760,000 wheels and 800 kilometers of wiring, 3,300 relays, and more than 175,000 connections.

The United States began to develop machines to calculate ballistic trajectories, abandoning the programmers who worked by hand, to appeal to machines. The IBM it greatly helped American industry, and Lieutenant Grace Hopper, later a Rear Admiral, programmed the Mark I machine at Harvard to develop the first computer language.


The invention served to locate enemy planes and ships

England created the first practical radar system in 1935, and by 1939 it built a network of radar stations on its southern and eastern coasts. They helped detect enemy ships and aircraft, decreasing the effectiveness of German planes during their bombing raids, helping British fighters to defeat them. After the war, its use was extended to the civilian world and to hurricane prevention.

super glue

A man uses super glue to work with tapestries

Using cyanoacrylate, which he tried without success to create clear lenses for gun sights, doctor harry coover he realized the adhesive properties of the chemical. This is how the superglue was born, which would later come in the form of an aerosol.

blood plasma transfusion

An American doctor treats a soldier in Italy

The American Surgeon CharlesDrew standardized the production of blood plasma for medical use, in order to administer it to any person, regardless of blood type. Several lives were saved thanks to its creation. Plasma is the liquid component of the blood where red blood cells, leukocytes and platelets are found, made up of water and mineral salts.

Synthetic rubber

Factory in Ohio

Elemental for the treads of vehicles and machinery, as well as footwear, clothing and equipment for soldiers. When the Japanese took over the rubber trees in Asia in 1942, American scientists studied synthetic alternatives. By 1944, the country’s plants produced about 800 thousand tons.

Microwave oven

1946 photo

It was based on radar technology. Legend has it that percy spencer, One of the engineers who created the radar was testing a machine when the chocolate in his pocket melted. He then experimented with other foods and with shorter wavelengths, thus giving rise to the microwave oven. Its use became popular in homes in the 1970s.

Bonuses: Duct Tape

The use of the adhesive helped the greater protection of the objects in boxes

Vesta Stoudt, A munitions factory worker in Illinois created duct tape. The US Army sealed its cases with permeable paper tape, so Stoudt used sticky, durable plastic.

With data from History Channel, History Hit Y Expert Reviews.

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