Ghanaian-American Chemical Engineer and Innovator, Dr. Thomas Mensah, has revealed that his innovations are being used by technology giants including Facebook, Google, Paypal among others.
Speaking to Accra-based Citi FM on Tuesday, Dr Mensah disclosed that he was given a task to improve fiber optics project while working for an American company, Corning Glass Works which he delivered tirelessly.
“I didn’t know that the impact was going to be big like this. All I knew was that there were four inventors, three whites and me. And they said, Dr. Mensah, we’ve come all the way with the glass part, but we think you are the only one who can do the part that will move us to the industrial stage. That was the challenge I had, and I worked on it for every day,” he said.
The renowned Chemical Engineer in his interviw submitted that he was able to help improve and commercialize a fiber optic technology the company had been working on for 15 years without success.
Dr Mensah noted that prior to his invention, copper wires were used as a major channel for data transmission and networking workstations.
“The question was how do we move this from the laboratory into factories, manufacturing, so that we can move into the global market? That was the problem I solved. Until then, fiber optics were available in the lab, and they were making it in two meters per second,” the engineer said.
The Ghanaian engineer added that his technology has become a major game changer in today's world technology space benefiting millions of people.
“So the lasers that are transmitted along this fiber is sending the Facebook pictures, Instagram, the entire social media experience is going through this laser base fiber optics. This is really what goes through the world,” he added.
The inventor in his interaction said his technology is what is making it possible for when people are “sending Facebook pictures, YouTube videos, your emails, tweets; everything is going down this [fiber optic] glass and it travels at milliseconds. In other words, you can sit here to upload Youtube videos, someone is viewing in the US or China in few seconds because of that technology.”
Dr Mensah said, although he did not envision the huge impact the fiber optic project will make in the technology space, he said most of his inventions and ideas he has espoused in books he’s authored and have been adopted by multi-million dollar technology giants to expand.
Dr. Thomas Mensah had his secondary and tertiary education in Ghana, and managed to secure a scholarship to further his education abroad in development of fiber optics and nanotechnology.
He has 14 patents, 7 of which were awarded within a period of six years, and he was inducted into the US National Academy of Inventors in 2015.
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