Dr. Harry Coover, the inventor of one of the most important pieces of reef keeping equipment, has passed away at the age of 94. Dr. Coover was the original inventor of Super Glue and first discovered the cyanoacrylate-based adhesive by accident while he was experimenting with gun-sights during World War II. He abandoned the experiment because the glue was too sticky, but later found the glue’s properties to be quite valuable, and so patented the product. The glue was even used to help injured Vietnam soldiers, as it quickly helped close up wounds.
Why is Dr. Coover and his Super Glue invention so important to reef aquarists? He would probably have asked the exact same question. The unique properties of the glue allow it to bond living tissue to other tissue and also to non-living surfaces, like coral frags to frag plugs for example. The corals eventually overgrow the glue and onto the frag plug, and really make life for coral aquaculture so much easier. Because of this, cyanoacrylate based Super Glue is one of the most important pieces of aquarium gear.
Thank you so much for you contribution, Dr. Coover. You will be missed. For more information about Dr. Coover and his accomplishments, please visit the New York Times.