Captive Column . Com

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As you can see from the following list, the Captive Column has had its share of media exposure. Of course there is "Good Exposure", "Indifferent Exposure", and the ever popular "Bad Exposure". The interesting thing about the Captive Column is that it received all three types of coverage over the years. This threw the public into a state of confusion and helped to stifle the inventor's efforts to commercialize it.

You saw the two photos at the top of our Home Page. That beam was made of balsa wood and fiberglass in the inventor's garage. Do you know of anything made of 50% balsa wood that can support a Caterpillar tractor? Imagine what it could do if it were optimized and made of high performance materials like graphite and aramid fiber. You would think a technological breakthrough like this would be newsworthy, but the media generally greeted it with indifference.

The Captive Column got off to a bad start when it was first published by Design News without the inventors knowledge or permission -- endangering the patent filing process. Over the years it became apparent that the quality of the article was inversely proportional to the size of the publication:

  • Small Circulation = "Good Article"
  • Large Circulation = "Bad Article"

Maybe the Big Boys just couldn't find good help.

In all fairness some of the very small publications did try to get the story out, but they just didn't have the circulation to put it over the top. We have our own theories about why the media behaved as it did, but we'll let you make up your own mind about that one.  

These are the write-ups that we know about, and some of them have links to critiques. The inventor would like your help to expand this list since he is probably not aware of all publications (especially university studies). For example, the inventor stumbled across a North Dakota State University study by accident. Mr. Bosch was surprised to find that it contained copies of his own materials lifted from an article in Sport Aviation magazine, and he wasn't even mentioned in the study. There are probably many others like it at universities across the country so e-mail Mr. Bosch if you come across one. You can usually find them on a dusty old shelf in the Mechanical Engineering Department.

Date Magazines & Trade Journals Page
01/--/65 Design News* n/a
11/09/66 Design News* 36
07/19/68 Design News 88
11/--/68 Signs Of The Times 66
06/09/69 Design News 216
10/--/69 Industrial Construction Product News n/a
11/17/69 Product Engineering 72
04/--/70 Sport Aviation 39
10/10/70 Modern Plastics 82
12/30/70 Design News (Annual) 355
03/08/71 Design News (Cover Story) 37
04/--/72 Popular Science 31
06/18/79 Design News


01/--/80 Nevada Department Of Transportation News n/a
08/04/80 Design News 40
08/--/81 Lifelines: North Dakota Highway Department 6
11/26/81 Engineering News Record 15
3/--/83 Alternative Sources Of Energy 27
01/--/84 Transmission & Distribution Magazine n/a
10/--/85 Transmission & Distribution Magazine n/a
04/--/86 Hi-Lites (Otter Tail Power Company Publication) 1


Date Newspapers City Page
03/11/68 Palo Alto Times Palo Alto, CA 7
06/07/68 The Mercury San Jose, CA n/a
06/09/70 Los Gatos Times Los Gatos, CA n/a
06/09/70 Saratoga Observer Saratoga, CA n/a
01/29/71 Los Gatos Times* Los Gatos, CA n/a
04/11/71 San Francisco Examiner San Francisco, CA 12
05/04/77 The Sacramento Bee Sacramento, CA C-9
04/06/78 Yuba City Morning Herald Yuba City, CA n/a
09/21/78 The Mountain Messenger Downieville, CA n/a
09/28/78 The Mountain Messenger Downieville, CA n/a
10/05/78 The Mountain Messenger Downieville, CA n/a
10/08/78 Gazette Journal Reno, NV n/a
01/16/79 Green Mountain Gazette Quincy, CA 22
09/11/79 Green Mountain Gazette Quincy, CA 5
10/20/81 University On North Dakota Paper Grand Forks, ND n/a
11/08/81 Fargo Forum Fargo, ND n/a
12/03/81 Mountain Messenger Downieville, CA 3
02/03/82 Fargo Forum Fargo, ND 1
02/03/82 City of Moorhead Press Release Moorhead, MN n/a
02/04/82 Minneapolis Star Minneapolis, MN A-1
02/05/82 Grand Forks Herald Grand Forks, ND n/a
03/--/82 UND Alumni Review Grand Forks, ND 8
04/11/82 Fargo Forum Fargo, ND C-1
06/24/82 The Moorhead Monitor Moorhead, MN n/a
05/17/88 Spartan Daily San Jose, CA 1
06/21/88 The Stanford Daily Stanford, CA 10
06/24/88 The Stanford Daily Stanford, CA 12
07/06/88 Saratoga News Saratoga, CA 6
08/17/88 Cupertino Courier Cupertino, CA n/a
09/19/88 Greensheet Santa Clara, CA n/a
10/20/88 Santa Clara American Weekly Santa Clara, CA 3
10/21/88 Wilcox Voice Santa Clara, CA 11
01/04/89 Clarion Rohnert Park, CA 1
04/12/89 Clarion Rohnert Park, CA 3
11/15/89 The Independent San Francisco, CA 8
05/09/91 La Voz Cupertino, CA 2


Date Studies Report Reference
04/--/80 National Department Of Transportation: Captive Column Crash Tests FHWA/NV-80-001
03/--/81 National Department Of Transportation: Captive Column Crash Tests - Final Report FHWA/RD-81/501
12/--/81 University of North Dakota: A Finite Element Computer Model Of The Captive Column EES Bulletin Number 81-12-EES-04
09/--/82 University Of North Dakota: Application Of The Captive Column To Highway Related Structures HPR State Study:
(1)-81 (A)
05/--/85 University Of North Dakota: Design, Construction And Testing Of Captive Column Bridge Girders HPR State Study:
(1)-82 (A)
12/--/82 Brigham Young University: Construction And Testing Of Captive Beam Thesis Presented To The Department Of Civil Engineering


Date Television City
02/--/82 WDAY News (Multi-Night Story) Fargo, ND


* Articles marked with a asterisk are not about the Captive Column -- they are about some of the inventors other ideas.


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Copyright 1998-2004 by Lawrence R. Bosch.