Timken Company

$1 Patent Ignited Creation Of Green-Technology Firm

$1 Patent Ignited Creation Of Green-Technology Firm

BOLTON — The most promising new green technology company in Connecticut — as judged by the Connecticut Technology Council back in 2011 — bought the patent for its product for $1.

Several years ago, Doug Rode, now managing partner of the company, Centritec Seals LLC, got a call out of the blue from Herman Ernst, a former engineering colleague at Hartford Steam Boiler.

"I don't want my patents to go to my grave." Ernst, now 83, told Rode. Ernst had developed a non-contact seal to protect bearings that used centrifugal pressure to keep water and grit away from the lubricated bearings.

"He made it in his garage," said Rode. "He was always the type of...