Arizona inventors and innovations leave an indelible mark in American history
Arizona may have been one of the last states to join the Union, but in its first 100 years, it’s been a leader in revolutionizing America. From nature’s mysteries to healthcare miracles, from sports to education and the exploration of outer space, Arizonans have had a hand in shaping our lives and the way we view the world.
Arizona Inventors & Innovators:
Rings of time
A.E. Douglass, an American astronomer, began researching the idea of tree-ring dating, or dendrochronology, prior to Arizona’s statehood. But the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at the University of Arizona wasn’t formed until 1937. He is credited with pinpointing the age of ruins that include the Aztec Ruins in New Mexico and the Mesa Verde cliff dwellings in Colorado.
A,B,C and 1,2,3
Joan Ganz Cooney, who received her B.A. degree in education from the University of Arizona in 1951, was part of a team who captured the hearts and imaginations of children around the world with the development of Sesame Workshop, creators of the popular “Sesame Street,” now in its 42nd season.
Mars brought to life
Launched into space in August 2008, the Phoenix Mars Lander was the first mission to Mars led by an academic institution, which was the University of Arizona and its principal investigator, Peter Smith, a professor at the school’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory.
Heart to heart
|The first successful surgery and use of an artificial heart was conducted at the University Medical Center in Tucson by Dr. Jack Copeland in 1985. His patient lived nine days using the Jarvik 7 Total Artificial Heart before he received a donor heart.|
The ripe test
Dr. Mark Riley at the University of Arizona has developed a sticker that, when placed on fruit or vegetables that emit ethylene gas, will change color. If the fruit is ripe, the sticker will appear dark blue. Once the fruit stops producing the gas, the color fades. The color change takes just a couple of minutes. Tests have been successful on both apples and pears, but the stickers aren’t available yet to consumers.