WASHINGTON, Oct. 25, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Following is the daily "Profile America" feature from the U.S. Census Bureau:
Profile America — Tuesday, October 25th. A melted candy bar led to the invention of one of today's most-used kitchen appliances. Percy Spencer of the Raytheon company was working on a military radar device in the mid-1940s when he noticed that his snack had gotten soft. Intrigued, he experimented with irradiating some kernels of popcorn, which promptly burst. Further work led to the first microwave ovens, which cost only a little less than a new car. On this date in 1955, the first consumer models were introduced, but they required installation and cost $1,200. Countertop models came along in 1967. Now, most homes across the country have microwave ovens, and about a half million have only the microwaves for cooking. Manufacturing microwave ovens and other cooking appliances is a $5 billion a year business. Profile America is in its 20th year as a public service of the U.S. Census Bureau.
Kane's Famous First Facts, 4303
Microwave inventor/accessed 7/22/2016: http://inventors.about.com/library/inventors/blmicrowave.htm
Inflation calculator: http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm
First consumer model and cost/accessed 7/22/2016: http://www.rsvlts.com/2014/08/12/early-adopter-costs/
Home appliances: http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=AHS_2013_C03AH&prodType=table
Manufacturing appliances/NAICS 335221: http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ASM/2014/31VS101//prodsvc~335221
Profile America is produced by the Center for New Media and Promotion of the U.S. Census Bureau. Statistics and accounts drawn from cited non-Census sources are employed for illustrative or narrative purposes, and are not attested to by the U.S. Census Bureau. These daily features are available as produced segments, ready to air, on the Internet at http://www.census.gov (look for "Audio" in the "Library" pull-down menu).
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SOURCE U.S. Census Bureau