Happy 111th Birthday to Modern Air Conditioning

On July 17, 1902, Willis Carrier invented modern air conditioning. With extreme heat all over today’s U.S. weather map, millions of people around the world are turning to an invention first developed 111 years ago by Dr. Willis H. Carrier, founder of Carrier, the world’s leader in high technology heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration solutions. Invented in 1902 as an industrial solution, modern air conditioning has enabled countless industries to flourish-spurring the modern necessities the world relies on today and bringing comfort, cooling and productivity to hospitals, schools, offices and homes.

Dr. Willis H. Carrier

Dr. Willis H. Carrier

Innovation is an integral part of Carrier’s legacy and its future,” said Geraud Darnis, president & CEO, UTC Climate, Controls & Security. “Willis Carrier’s invention forever changed the world and today, Carrier’s team of dedicated researchers and engineers apply the same spirit of ingenuity to continually develop new technologies and environmentally responsible solutions that create comfortable, healthy, productive environments around the world.”


On July 17, 1902, Dr. Carrier developed a design to control the humidity at the Sackett & Wilhelms Lithography and Printing Company in Brooklyn, N.Y., enabling the paper used in the printing process to remain a constant dimension. Among the early industrial adopters of this cool innovation was the film industry, using it to stabilize humidity and ultimately advance filmmaking by preventing the iconic white specks, common in classic movies, from developing on film reels. The film industry was forever changed in 1925 when Carrier cooled the Rivoli Theatre in New York, transforming theaters into a haven from the summer heat,vastly increasing ticket sales during a traditionally slow season, and creating the “summer blockbuster.”

The conveniences of air conditioning spread to homes in 1926 with Carrier’s introduction of the first home air conditioner and since then, the application of air conditioning has become widespread. Today, 87 percent of U.S. homes have some form of air conditioning and a 2012 study conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has shown that this technology can be life-saving during summer heat waves.

For more information about Willis Carrier, visit Carrier’s history website WillisCarrier.com, pick up a copy of Weathermakers to the World, Carrier’s 144-page hardcover book filled with vivid narrative about American innovation and the rich history of modern air conditioning, available on Amazon.com.

Source: Carrier

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