The Microwave Oven – A device we cannot live without today in our “express” lives. So who invented this “cook it quickly” device.
After some research it turns out that a man by the name of Percy Spencer invented the microwave oven almost by accident after a candy bar melted in his pocket while he was standing in front of a radar set he was working on.
Voila, he then decided to investigate further and tried heating up various food items using a kettle as the casing. In fact the first food they tried was popcorn kernels and then yes, you guessed it “an egg”, needless to say this exploded in one of his co-workers face.
Spencer then tried using an enclosed metal box and attaching a high density electromagnetic field generator to it. The magnetron would then shoot into the metal box, so that the electromagnetic waves would have no way to escape, which would allow for more controlled and safe experimentation. He tried various food items in the box and monitored their temperature to observe the effect.
Spencer was working for the company Raytheon at the time and they filed a patent on October 8, 1945 for a microwave cooking oven, eventually named the Radarange.
The first commercially produced microwave ovens were about 6 feet tall and weighed around 750 pounds and cost around $5000. Only by 1967 did the first affordable and reasonably sized microwave ovens become available.
Microwave ovens have definitely come a long way since then.