On the Event Horizon for Saturday, October 26, 2013, join us for a fascinating discussion with Dr. David Pensak!

Dr. David Pensak got a great start in life.  He attributes at least some of his scientific curiosity to Dr. Albert Einstein.  You see, they were neighbors.  Dr. Einstein used to come over all the time because Pensak’s mother was a wonderful cook.

Today Dr. Pensak is one of our country’s most prolific and successful innovators. He recently founded Vaporiety after a distinguished 30-year career at DuPont, where he held myriad senior research positions and served as a corporate technology growth champion, providing guidance for and managing advanced computer-technology explorations and development and advanced materials.  In October of 2011 Vaporiety was named one of 50 most Innovative Startups in the World by the Kaufmann Foundation.

One of the fun catch phrases of science geeks is “better living through chemistry.”  Here are some of the remarkable things Dr. Pensak has done in chemistry include:

  • A high flow rate filtration system with a new class of membranes to clean up effluent water from abandoned Rocky Mountain mines
  • A biodegradable additive that mixed with animal manure in agricultural settings causes the fermentation to become aerobic rather than anaerobic, thereby decreasing smell, nitrogen and phosphorus runoff, and stabilizing the soil
  • A new class of concrete protection chemicals for streets and buildings with reduced weathering and pot-hole characteristics
  • A new kind of spackle for the construction industry that is immediately ready to paint, needs no sanding, and requires just one coat
  • A very low cost prosthetic hand which is within range of even the poorest developing country
  • A suite of materials that can be implanted  in a periodontal procedure to minimize and/or eliminate gum resection surgery
  • A new coating for teeth that discourages the bacteria that cause plaque and tooth decay.  (That coating your dentist put on your kid’s teeth when the bab teeth first went away?  That’s the stuff.)
  • A new class of textiles which are simultaneously waterproof, fireproof and breathable – at the weight of silk
  • And developed new technologies in heat storage and dispersal.

He’s even invented a new kind of lid for coffee cups that makes coffee taste better!

After retiring from DuPont, he joined the faculty at the Wharton School of Business. He is currently on the faculties of George Washington University School of Law and the University of Delaware Business School. He holds an AB from Princeton in Chemistry and an AM and PhD from Harvard, both in Chemistry.

Dr. Pensak authored the critically acclaimed book, Innovation for Underdogs, which teaches by way of real-world examples the technqie for transforming an idea into a reality in the marketplace.  All proceeds from the sale of this book go to help the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

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