Great Discoveries

Some scientific discoveries have been made after years and even decades of the most painstaking research. Yet, quite incredibly, there are some awesome discoveries that happened by pure accident. Some of these are completely revolutionary and have changed the course of human history in addition to creating the most unlikely heroes.

Vulcanized rubber
In the early years of the 19th century rubber was mainly made for making waterproof shoes but the products it produced were hardly satisfactory. Rubber was unable to withstand weather extremities with the result that it would be either too cold during the winter months or too hot during summer. Shoe manufacturers desperately tried to address this problem without success and most were about to give up on it when one Charles Goodyear accidentally how to make rubber weatherproof. While trying to display the results he had achieved in improving the quality of rubber, the piece of rubber that Charles was holding fell on a hot stove making it charred. From that day on, rubber was made weatherproof in this version. Many years later, the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company would be started and named after the discoverer of vulcanized rubber.

Penicillin
British scientist Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin by mistake. There are several versions of the circumstances leading to this discovery but this is the gist of the matter: the scientist was investigating mould but the dish he was working on was left open for a long time and when Fleming looked at it later, he discovered that it had succeeded in inhibiting the growth of bacteria. This marked the arrival of antibiotics into the world.

Coca-Cola
Coca-Cola could be the most popular drink in the world today but it made its appearance quite accidentally. The inventor, John Pemberton, was a pharmacist who was trying to develop a cure for headaches. The ingredients he used were cola nuts and coca leaves. When the mixture was accidentally mixed with carbonated water, the result was the drink we now know as Coca-Cola. Of course there have been changes in the formula which is now a secret.

Potato chips
Potato chips had not been discovered before the mid-19th century and potatoes were fried whole. One New York restaurant kept receiving complaints that the their potatoes were too thick and not dried enough and, mostly out of anger, the chef on one occasion cut the potatoes into small pieces and then fried them. Customers liked the new creation immediately and potato chips were born.