Proud of our past... Secure in our future'
Click here to contact us via email at

  Hall of Fame Search:

Charles W. Kleiderer - Hall of Fame Entry
  Author: Plastics Academy Staff
Added: 03/29/2004
Type: Summary
Viewed: 459 time(s)
[ Not Rated Yet ]

How would you rate this article:    Bad Good    

Charles W. Kleiderer - Hall of Fame Entry


Charles W. Kleiderer




Industry Areas:
Material, Process, Management

Made major contributions to his country and to the plastics industry during World War II, and truly merits the honors extended to him by a grateful nation.

In 1940, Kleiderer and his three employees were developing new plastics materials at the Office of Scientific Research and Development at Johns Hopkins University. At the time, over 1,500 people were working on the secret Project A, the development of a "variable time" (VT) fuse that enabled artillery shells to explode within a predetermined distance from their target.

No existing material, including plastics such as styrene, acetates, and lucite, could withstand the tremendous force exerted when the shell was fired. Kleiderer was chosen by the U.S. Navy to develop new plastics that would meet the rigid electrical and impact requirements of the VT fuse.

After numerous reformations of different products and exhaustive lab and field tests, a new material, named ethyl cellulose, was developed with Hercules Powder Co. A derivative of ethyl cellulose was also developed and patented by Kleiderer, named "Cliderite," to be used as a sealer for the fuse that generated the power to trigger the firing mechanism.

Once the development of the materials was complete, mass production of the fuse for the war effort became the next major challenge for Kleiderer. He took on the responsibility for development of tooling, equipment and facilities, training of manufacturing personnel, production, quality control, delivery of the fuses to the various locations of operations, and training of civilian and military personnel in the proper use of the fuses.

For his wartime efforts, he was awarded the U.S. Navy Bureau of Ordnance Award, Naval Development Award, Office of Scientific Research Certificate of Merit, the Army and Navy Certificates of Appreciation, and the War Manpower Commission Committee Diploma on Scientific Research.

Following the war, he became vice president of Brilhart Plastics Corp. and president of Penn Plastics Corp. Prior to his retirement, he was executive vice president of Shaw Plastics Corp.

He has been a member of SPE since 1944, chairman of the National Plastics Exposition Companies Committee of SPI, and president of the Plastics Pioneers. He received his BS in chemistry from W. Kentucky University.

Kleiderer currently resides with his wife, Roberta, in Haverhill, MA. He has one daughter, Carole L. Kayea, and two grandchildren.

Article Pages:  1  

Support Material

There is no support material available for this article.

Related Articles

There are no related articles available for this article.

Related LinksForum Link

This article contains a link to a related forum thread.
Please click here to view the thread.

Related Books

There are no related books available for this article.

  Article Comments   Add Comment | View All (2)
Poster: anthony loconte
Added: 11/03/2005

Charles W. Kleiderer died in 1999
Poster: anhtony loconte
Added: 06/07/2005

i am a grandson of Roberta he was a good man he was like my Grand Father if you want more infomation be free to email me at [email protected]
thank you for Honoring him he was a good man.

anthony Loconte,



Bookmark Us!
   Add to Favorites
  Make Home Page
Our Newsletter


Recent Forum Posts
Cant connect to forum server