Martin Marietta Handmade Circuit Boards

+ View Full Size

Martin Marietta Handmade Circuit Boards

Martin Marietta Handmade Circuit Boards

March 1, 2016

A handmade circuit board created by David Emmons at the Martin Company in Orlando, circa 1970.

Mr. David L. Emmons of the Orlando Division received the Inventor of the Year Award in 1968 from The Martin Company for inventions relating to the Pershing missile, RADA communications system, and the Area Correlator Program.

LISTEN (19:02) as Mr. Emmons discusses the invention in this excerpt from an oral history interview on February 27, 2015.

After we were through with Thin Films I was transferred to RADA, the early RADA program which stood for Random Access Discreet Address Communications.


Martin Company poster for RADA: Random Access Discrete Address, circa 1950s.

There were two or three of those RADA programs. I was on all of them. And in between the RADA programs, I was on the PDP phase of Walleye. And it was a product definition phase where the Navy wanted to build this glide bomb with a TV in the front of it. And it had a big power supply in the back and a big television system in the front. And I figured out a way to save a lot of money on the television camera counter. And I ended up getting a patent on that. That's another one of my patents. And then on the second RADA program, I went back on RADA eventually and figured out a way to synchronize RADA systems. It's called a bit synchronizer and it was a patent I got.

I was pretty fortunate I was raising little girls and there's never enough money raising little girls. And so I ended up making a lot of extra money with patent applications. And I would say that at least 30 or 40 percent of my patent applications, disclosures they were called resulted in a patent. The company had to decide in a meeting of high powered people whether to patent an idea or not. Whether it was worthy of a patent. A patent even in those days cost about 5,000 dollars. And so, the question is, is your idea worthy of a patent and valuable to the company....

Patent document courtesy of the David L. Emmons Archives.

This Image Is Related To: