We were very sad to learn about the death of the extraordinary chemist and inventor of Kevlar, Stephanie Kwolek at the age of 90 this weekend.
Ellen Kullman, the Chief Executive of DuPont, where Stephanie had worked since 1946, issued a statement saying “We are all saddened at the passing of DuPont scientist Stephanie Kwolek, a creative chemist and a true pioneer for women in science.”
Used in bullet proof vests and, since 1974, many of our speaker cones, the lightweight material is five times stronger than steel and changed the way we looked at cone design from our Sound System to our 600 Series speakers.
We take the woven fabric and impregnate it with a stiffening resin that cures during the cone forming process. The cone is then further treated with a polymer coat, which seals the fibres and adds damping. The result is a semi-flexible cone, which exhibits a peculiar style of break-up behaviour, not found in more conventional materials, that maintains a more constant dispersion pattern at all frequencies in its range and transmits far fewer delayed, time-smearing sounds to the listener.
Other speaker companies later picked up on Kevlar’s unique properties but none treats the material in the same way to achieve the impressive results we do.