Ames Laboratory; Materials Science and Engineering
Materials Science and Engineering, Ames Laboratory
JOM: Journal of the Minerals, Metals and Materials Society
According to popular wisdom, it takes 20 years or more to commercialize a material after its discovery in the lab, and this is used to justify all sorts of research efforts to speed up the process. The twenty-year rule was probably first introduced by Tom Eagar, in a paper in MIT’s Technology Review  that cites nine examples of 20-year gaps between discovery and commercialization, over a time period from the mid-nineteenth to the late twentieth century. Others have added to the list.
DOE Contract Number(s)
Iowa State University Digital Repository, Ames IA (United States)