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Gordon Battelle

Founder's Day Reflections

Posted by Battelle Insider on Oct 17, 2016

The end of Gordon Battelle’s life was the start of a lifetime of innovation. 

Gordon’s last will and testament provided for the creation of the Battelle Memorial Institute. We’ve grown from our humble beginnings in 1929 into a large, independent research and development organization that is solving some of the world’s most difficult challenges. 

Here’s a brief look back at some of our work from the last 87 years: 

  • Developed armor plating for U.S. Army tanks used in WWII.
  • Played a major role in the development of the xerography process, which resulted in the formation of the Xerox Corporation. 
  • Developed the barcode symbol, known as the Universal Product Code (UPC).
  • Pioneered the method to record digital information on optical compact discs (CDs).
  • Helped develop a cell isolation device to quickly identify and study tumor cells circulating in the blood.
  • Engineered commercial vehicles that provide protection and superior on- and off-road performance.
  • Developed the first commercial next-generation sequencing software for forensic DNA analysis.
  • Created breakthrough technology that someday may help paralyzed patients to regain conscious control of their fingers, hands and wrists.
  • Developed a non-kinetic solution to bring down drones without compromising safety or risking collateral damage.

Watch this video to see the details of how we got our start and other innovations we’ve helped bring to light. 

Each August, Battelle employees celebrate our founder and his birthday. There are many great inventions in our past and many more to come in our future. It’s the reason why we say, at Battelle “it can be done.”