10 YEARS AGO — 2002
Make way for 42 V: Say one thing for new 42-V automotive electrical systems: Battery makers will cheer as more vehicles start carrying dual batteries. And consumers should get ready for more-expensive, 36-V car batteries. This according to a new report titled, “Impact of 42-V Electrical Systems on North American Automobiles,” from Frost & Sullivan, San Jose. It examines how the move to higher-voltage systems will affect alternators, starters, batteries and electronics.
The report sees more demand for unusual electronic products that may open doors for new manufacturing companies to enter the automotive market.
According to analysts, manufacturers have their work cut out convincing automakers of potential benefits of 42-V systems, which include better fuel economy and lower emissions, among other things.
30 YEARS AGO — 1982
Fluorescent bulb for an old socket: When a new 15-W fluorescent bulb from Interlectric Corp., Warren, Pa., is screwed into a standard (mediumbase) incandescent-lamp socket, it is said to produce the light output of a 60-W incandescent bulb for an average life of 10,000 hr. Phosphors give the 8¼-in.-long bulb color similar to incandescent lighting, and an efficient solid-state ballast is credited with eliminating hum and flicker. The bulb can be operated in any position.
50 YEARS AGO — 1962
All-aluminum telescope built by Itek Corp., Lexington, Mass., for space tracking has a 240-in. optical path which “folds" into the 45-in. instrument. It can discern a 12-in. object 100 miles away. The telescope’s two mirrors are cast aluminum coated with nickel phosphide. A comparable glass and metal instrument would weigh several hundred pounds; this one weighs 50 lb. With stable and vibration-free mounting, it could be carried in an airplane above atmospheric turbulence, haze, and clouds to obtain clear views of missiles and satellites.