DETROIT -- Stanford Ovshinsky, an inventor who is credited with developing the nickel-metal hydride battery, died Oct. 17. He was 89.
His inventions are used in a wide variety of electronics and in gasoline-electric hybrids, including the Toyota Prius.
He was born in Akron, Ohio, in 1922 and attended night school to get his high school degree. He moved to Detroit in 1952 to become director of research at Hupp Corp. and continued to teach himself physics and chemistry. He founded Energy Conversion Devices in 1960 in a small Detroit lab with his wife, Iris, who had a doctorate in chemistry.
After Bob Stempel was forced out as General Motors chairman in 1993, he became ECD’s chairman and CEO. Ovshinsky and Stempel were forced out of ECD in 2007. The company focused on solar roofing but went bankrupt during the recession.