|Intro||Spanish engineer (1925-2011)|
|A.K.A.||Manuel Jalón, Manuel Jalon Corominas, Manuel Jalon|
|Birth||31 January 1925, Logroño, La Rioja, Spain|
|Death||16 December 2011, Zaragoza, Zaragoza Province, Aragon, Spain (aged 86 years)|
Manuel Jalón Corominas (Logroño, 31 January 1925 – Zaragoza, 16 December 2011) was a Spanish inventor. His inventions included the mop and the disposable syringe.
Born in Logroño, Manuel Jalón Corominas spent most of his life in Zaragoza. He studied aeronautical engineering in Madrid and completed a doctoral thesis about aeronautical accidents. Following his graduation he spent some time working in the US and in Finland, and for a while he was an officer in the Spanish Air Force at the air base of Zaragoza.
The mop and bucket
During his stay in the United States, Jalón observed how hangars were cleaned using a flat mop and a bucket with rollers. Back in Spain he decided to launch the manufacture in Spain of the first of a new design of 'floorcleaners' and buckets with rollers.
His successes as inventor led to his founding a company in 1958, Manufacturas Rodex, S.A., which took out patents and adopted the brand name "Rodex" (which he had first registered in 1956). Corominas persuaded Catalan entrepreneurs to invest in his business, in particular Buenaventura and Domingo Rull of the Lleida company Casa Rull, who became sole distributors of Rodex products in Catalonia. They established the name "Rodex" as a generic term for the mop. Jalón remained as chief executive of the company for over 30 years, and his early co-workers Enrique Falcón Morellón y Emilio Bellvis Montesano also became shareholders. Jalón exported his products, the mop particularly, to more than 40 countries, from the United States to China.
Jalón's bucket with rollers and, later, the mop, improved the quality of life in Spanish homes. They superseded the traditional way of cleaning the floor on hands and knees, making it possible to clean the floor without kneeling—a cause of bursitis of the knee and spinal injuries—and without impairing the skin of the hands with bleach.
The disposable syringe
In 1989, after more than 60 million mops had been sold around the world, the company stocks were sold to the Dutch multinational Curver BV. After this, Jalón worked on other inventions, notably the disposable syringe, which was also a success. This type of syringe had a plunger less prone to stick; it was made from plastic instead of glass, and with thin walls making disposal easier. They were first produced by the Fabersanitas factory at Fraga (Huesca province) and were exported to over 80 countries. The factory was later bought by the Becton Dickinson group.
Manuel Jalón Corominas died of cardiopulmonary arrest on 16 December 2011 in Zaragoza, age 86.
Honours and awards
In 1991, the local government of Zaragoza granted Jalón their highest business award, the Salduba prize. In 1992 he was named "favourite son" of the City of Zaragoza. The same year he was also named 'Riojano of the year' by popular vote.