THE COMPLETE MEMORY FOAM - Part 1: The History
As with so many technological advances in the past 50 years, Memory Foam was developed as part of a NASA project in the 1970s and was soon shown to be unique in the way it responded to temperature. Also, its ability to spread contact pressure over a greater surface, thus reducing pressure points, was also seen as being of great benefit to post-operative orthopedic patients.
However, the initial versions of the foam did not maintain an innate level of quality over time, suffering from a lack of durability, compression and physical cracking.
So, more research & development was conducted until a Memory Foam was created which was all the things the prototype was not - durable, pressure-sensitive; absolutely ideal for use in situations where comfort was essential.
The original commercial manufacturer was the Swedish company, Tempur-Pedic©, and they marketed their Memory Foam products as medical devices and, as such, the foam commanded a relatively high price. The way was open, therefore, for similar products to be produced for regular shoppers, manufactured by firms with experience in the consumer foam industry. Used to a low cost structure, these firms were able to price their Memory Foam products at a fraction of the 'Medical-Grade' foam and the marketplace expanded rapidly, with different versions of the Memory Foam being made around the globe.