Answered By: Archives & Library Staff @The Henry Ford Last Updated: Jul 07, 2022 Views: 11
The Ford Scientific Research Laboratory on the Research and Engineering Campus (Acc. 951 box 17)
The Ford Scientific Research Laboratory was established in 1951 to provide diversification based on new knowledge, furnish technical information essential to existing products, and develop product improvements and innovations. In 1952, the laboratory and staff were set up on the 2nd floor of the Dynamometer Building on the Research and Engineering Campus in Dearborn, MI. The team moved to the new Research Building in 1957. Major work in the 1950s included identifying pollutants in automotive exhaust, developing titanium carbide cutting tools, and the gas turbine “Big Red” engine.
In 1962, the group split into the Scientific Laboratory, headed by Jack Goldman, and Applied Research, headed by Ed Marande. The 1960s saw the group working on an Electrocure process for curing paint with radiation, developing lightweight automotive materials to improve fuel economy, experiments with sodium sulphate batteries as an alternate to the internal combustion engine, and development of four-wave mixing of light (a basis for spectroscopic technique). They also reported the first observation of Giant Quantum Effect and headed pioneering studies in metallurgy of diffusional and displacive phase transformations.
Physicist Dr. George Alers in the Ford Scientific Research Laboratory, c. 1955 (P.O.10025)
The research laboratory focused on environmental aspects of the automotive industry throughout the 1970s. Their studies included beginning research in identifying molecules and reaction mechanisms that lead to smog and urban air quality degradation, atmospheric modeling to work with Ford on emission regulations, options for alternative fuel and non-internal combustion vehicles including the PROCO engine, and the first electronic engine controls.
In the 1980s the group worked on palladium-based three-way catalysts, EXT Electric Transaxle Vehicle research, split-port engines, and service bay diagnostics. The laboratory expanded further in the 1990s with the establishment of the Safety Research Department in 1997, and the e-Technologies department in 1999 and was working on rapid prototyping of component tooling and the P2000 H₂ fuel cell sedan and hybrid electric vehicle. In 2005, the laboratory changed its name to the Ford Research and Innovation Center, continuing to focus on Flexible Fuel Vehicles and the environmental impact of the automotive industry.
Dr. Andrew Kucher with electronic equipment used in the development and testing of gas turbine engine components (P.833.107933.3)
Andy Kucher, 1951-1957
Mike Ference, 1957-1971
Dale Compton, 1971-1986
John McTague, 1987-1990
Bill Powers, 1991-2000
Gerhard Schmidt, 2001-2011
Ken Washington, 2011-2021
Jim Buczkowski, (interim as of 2022)
Acc. 951 Ford Motor Company Non Serial Publications Collection
box 10 Facts and Facets of the Auto Industry: The Scientific Laboratory, 1958
box 17 Ford Motor Company Research: The First 50 Years, 2001
box 41 The Scientific Laboratory, 1955
Acc. 536 Public Relations Research Library Press Releases Subseries
box 31 Engineering; Scientific Laboratory, 1952-53 (2 folders)
box 54 Kucher, Andrew A.
Biography (2 folders)
Executive Communication, 1953
Acc. 234 Speech Services Records
box 13 Kucher, Andrew A. 1952, January 10, “A Glimpse into the Future”
1953, May 6, “The Scientific Laboratory”
Acc. 1527 Ford R Bryan Papers
box 2 Miscellaneous Items “Perspectives” Staff Meeting Minutes “Under Dr. Andrew A.
Kucher” by Ford R. Bryan.
box 3 Binders: Optical Spectroscopy, Scientific Laboratory 1951-1974, Optical Spectroscopy
I, Optical Spectroscopy II
box 4 Ford Motor Company Spectroscopy
Analysis of magnesium alloys using photomultiplier Tubes, 1945
Commercial Direct Reading Spectrometer, 1951
Geiger-Muller Counting Equipment, Phosphorus in Cast Iron, 1947
Early Analytical Spectrography at the Rouge, 1935-1945
Experimental Grating Spectrometer, 1942-48
Experimental Sample Molds, Glass, Metal, Plastic, 1951
Manufacturing Research Department, 1947
Microspectroscopy of metals, 1946
Reference spectra taken on experimental grating spectrometer, 1948
Scrap Analysis, 1946
Management Proposals Old-Timers Club Directory, 1982
Retired Management Directory, 1998
Retirement Photos, 1974
Acc. 699 Training Department Records
box 1 "Engineering . . . the Scientific Laboratory"
Acc. 1660 Photographic Vertical File
box 130 Research and Engineering Center; Interiors, Exteriors
box 139 Executives; Kucher, Andrew
Ford Motor Company; Scientific Laboratory
Kucher, Andrew A.
ATTN: The Benson Ford Research Center remains closed to the public for in-person research, tours, and visits. It will remain closed until further notice, but Research Center staff members continue to respond to inquiries. Please contact us by email, mail, or by submitting a question.
Benson Ford Research Center
The Henry Ford
P.O. Box 1970
Dearborn, Michigan, USA 48121-1970