The Hirschmann family entered into the personal safety industry nearly 75 years ago. It all began in 1942, designing and manufacturing the goggles worn by the US Air Corps and Tank Corps. Most of us are familiar with this goggle because any movie of this wartime era depicts brave soldiers and flyers wearing this “Sun, Wind and Dust” goggle. This was followed by the “Drawn Plastic safety goggle and the revolutionary “SoftSides® Goggle”, developed by the late Jack Bouton Hirschmann, Sr., founder of H.L. Bouton Co., and then the introduction of the U-Fit temple on safety glasses, developed by Jack, Jr. The U-Fit temple made wearing safety glasses more comfortable by conforming to the contours of the head.
Oberon was founded in the late 1970’s to expand our personal protection product line and began with the inception of the innovative Face-Fit® faceshield. This ushered in the idea that faceshields could be made to suit the needs of specific unique hazards. Our Gold shield was inspired when NASA approached Bouton for a solution to the blinding effects of UV radiation during early space walks. Preliminary tests demonstrated that the Double Eagle goggle would provide the necessary protection, however the goggle was too bulky to be worn inside their helmets, so a thin layer of gold was applied to their visors. This technology was found to be useful not only in space, but also provided solutions for radiant heat hazards in the workplace, such as foundries, steel mills, glass making and the like.
The invention of the first Arc Flash faceshield, developed in the early 1980’s at Oberon, started with a phone call from an electric utility, which had experienced arc flash burns to their meter installers. The idea has grown into an industry providing comprehensive safety for electricians, linemen and contractors across utilities, industry and municipalities around the world.
The innovation continues today… raising the bar as we move ahead. The OBERON TRUE COLOR GREY ™ (TCG) ArcShield™ is not an innovation, but a revolution in the Arc Flash PPE marketplace. With the OBERON “see clearly” shield, you can now see all the colors of the wires you are working on. The TCG ArcShield is a neutral grey, which means that REDS are RED and BLUES are BLUE. This has been at the top of the wish list for many years of everyone who wears arc flash faceshields and hoods. It is now a reality because of OBERON innovation.
We also set our sights on Arc Flash clothing with the development of OBERON’s industry leading arc flash fabrics. The InnovexFR™ fabric system is the latest result…even lighter, more comfortable than before. The TCG40 Series clothing is a super light PPE4 solution, a relief to those whose jobs require they wear these suits.
OBERON is not just a manufacturing company, we are an engineering company that develops innovative solutions. We participate on national standards committees and have a team of experts who strive every day to improve our Arc Flash PPE product line.