Bubble Wrap

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Bubble Wrap (originally Air Cap)[2] is a trademarked brand of Sealed Air Corporation that includes numerous cushioning products made from bubble wrap.[1][3] The brand and product were introduced in 1960, with the launch of Sealed Air.[1] Although the brand was originally used for the packaging of IBM computers, Sealed Air now does most of its Bubble Wrap business in the food packaging industry.[4]

History

Bubble wrap was invented in 1957 by engineers Alfred Fielding and Marc Chavannes. Fielding and Chavannes sealed two shower curtains together, creating a smattering of air bubbles, which they originally tried to sell as wallpaper.[4] When the product turned out to be unsuccessful as wallpaper, the team marketed it as greenhouse insulation.[4] Although Bubble Wrap was branded by Sealed Air Corporation (founded by Fielding and Chavannes) in 1960, it was not until a few years later that its use in protective packaging was discovered.[5] As a packaging material, Bubble Wrap's first client was IBM, which used the product to protect the IBM 1401 computer during shipment.[4] Fielding and Chavannes were inducted into the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame in 1993.[5] Sealed Air celebrated Bubble Wrap's 50th birthday in January 2010.[6]

Uses

In 2006, 2007, and 2008, Sealed Air hosted the Annual Bubble Wrap Competition For Young Inventors.[7] In the competition, children are encouraged to design products made out of bubble wrap that have uses outside of the packaging industry.[7] Inventions have included a "Bubble Wrap Car Door Cover", a "Bubble Wrap Cushy Wheelchair", and "Transformable Bubble Wrap Kite".[8] Popping Bubble Wrap is sometimes used as stress-relief, and Sealed Air's corporate offices have "stress relief boxes" that are filled with Bubble Wrap for the employees to pop.[9][10] As of January 2010, over 250 Facebook pages have been dedicated to Bubble Wrap.[11]

References

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