STA, 14 November 2020 - Legendary Slovenian inventor Peter Florjančič has died aged 101, the Bled municipality confirmed for web portal Siol.net. Florjančič patented about 400 inventions, of which 43 reached the production phase. Some of his most popular inventions include plastic slide frames, a perfume atomiser and a plastic injection molding machine.
Born on 5 March 1919 in Bled, Florjančič lived in a number of countries, including Mone Carlo, Monaco, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Germany and the US. He spent the last year of his life in a care home in Radovljica.
Apart from being an inventor known around the world, he was also an active athlete, musician and a film actor. At sixteen, he was the youngest member of the Yugoslav skiing team in the 1936 Olympic Games. He also appeared in The Monte Carlo Story, a 1956 Italian comedy-drama film featuring Marlene Dietrich.
"An inventor must have a cool head, always observing everything around him. Ideas are born in different ways. One can be born in a second and developed in a few days, while there are also ideas that need years to develop," he was quoted as saying on his website peter-florjancic.eu.
He thought his "best and most complex" invention was the perfume atomizer, followed by a plastic slide frame and a plastic injection molding machine.
His career started when he invented a loom. His other successful inventions include a work-out bed and plastic ice skates. He also invented the plastic zipper (1948), and the airbag (1957), neither of which were successful at the time because of the quality of the materials available. Both were perfected at later dates by other inventors.
The Technical Museum of Slovenia marked his 100th birthday with an exhibition Living a Dream, celebrating innovators. In 2007, Florjančič published his biography, Skok v Smetano (Jump into the Cream).
His life was also presented in a documentary directed by Karpo Godina Zgodba gospoda P.F. (The Story of Mr P.F.).