Letters: Made in Norway, credited to the US

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The Independent Online
From Mr Oystein Franck-Nielsen

Sir: I read today (News Analysis, 16 August) about six inventions that changed the world. One them is the aerosol box, which has indeed changed the world, but maybe in a way that we might have been better off without.

But the aerosol was not invented in New York in 1939, as your article states. Actually, the aerosol was patented in Norway, as early as 1929, by the chemist Erik Rotheim. It came into its first practical use in Norway only a few years later.

Mr Rotheim's invention was also patented in many other countries, among them the US, Germany, Britain, France and Sweden.

The aerosol was in small-scale use in Norway during the 1930s, but progress was slow until the Americans picked up the idea in 1941.

However, since this smart little box has proved so destructible, maybe we should leave the "honour" to the Americans?

Yours faithfully,

Oystein Franck-Nielsen

Oslo, Norway