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Specialist Materials for Industry and Science

Vacuums don't suck

Vacuums don't suck

In the Apiezon laboratory, we do quality control testing and process and product development, helping with both the manufacturing and applications side of M&I

Our technical team have had a long standing interest in vacuums. According to them this was in some part from witnessing a couple of very simple and well known, but nonetheless fascinating demonstrations in their formative years. The first of which was….

the silencing of a ringing alarm clock by evacuating the glass bell jar in which it stood. The second was even more simple, but just as amazing; a large metal can was made to ‘spontaneously’ collapse simply by boiling a small amount of water inside, then screwing the lid on and allowing it to cool. The hidden power of air pressure beautifully illustrated!

Luckily their general interest in vacuum continued, and although it wasn’t the only thing that led them to work for M&I, becoming involved with the analysis and development Apiezon products immediately sucked them in!

Such a massive amount of technology that we today take for granted would have been totally impossible without the ability to create (and measure) vacuums. From the first practical electric light bulbs in the late 19th century through radios, TVs and computers (both the big old ones with vacuum tubes, and the new flat screen ones packed with microchips) as well as a whole host of other things that are taken for granted just because they aren’t right in front of our noses.

The development of various different types of mechanical vacuum pump were driven by this ever growing industrial and technological need, but the invention and subsequent development of the ‘diffusion pump’ in 1915 was what really enabled a huge increase in the capabilities of vacuum pumping systems. Click here to learn more about the diffusion pump.



  • Apiezon
  • Metrosil
  • Midel
  • Wolfmet

Products of M&I Materials Ltd.