A South African invention that went to the moon July 27 2017, 0 Comments

South Africa, like many countries, is peppered with events that formed it into what it is today.  Good and bad events that helped steer the country in a number of interesting directions and carve out a history to remember.  The past brought a number of achievements, including inventions that helped change not only South Africa but the world.

One such invention is the now famous Pratley Putty, invented by a South African Engineer, George Pratley.   His product is widely used; from here to the moon and back!   

Originally called Pratley Plastic Putty, it was developed as an insulator and an adhesive agent for fixing brass terminals inside electrical junction boxes.  In 1965, Pratley built a robot from scrap metal, which he called Humphry.  Humphry was held together – very firmly – by Pratley Putty!  This invention had proved to be so effective that In 1969, when Neil Armstrong landed on the moon, he had with him a bit of South Africa in the form of this amazing putty.   NASA included it in the Apollo 11’s Eagle landing craft.  An endorsement out of this world!

Perhaps less known is the fact that this same substance was used to stop the cracking in one of the main supports of the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco.   Now that is no ordinary bridge!

While best known for his putty, his inventions were numerous including the world’s first chemical-delay igniter as well as a whole lot of fun stuff.

Today, his legacy goes on through the company he formed, Pratley Engineering that manufactures 800 products and owns 300 registered patents.  It has won a number of awards including a Technology Top ten in 1993.  Awards are what we like and we like to honour those who deserve the trophies and the gold medals.

We have much to be proud of, not least our inventors who's legacy lives on for all to see and enjoy.

Prestige Awards loves achievement.   And we would love to be part of yours.  www.prestigeawards.co.za