Velcro is a company that produces the first commercially marketed fabric hook-and-loop fastener,[1] invented in 1948 by the Swiss electrical engineer George de Mestral. De Mestral patented Velcro in 1955, subsequently refining and developing its practical manufacture until its commercial introduction in the late 1950s. The word Velcro is a portmanteau of the two French words velours ("velvet"), and crochet ("hook").[1][2][3] Hook-and-loop fasteners consist of two components: typically, two lineal fabric strips (or, alternatively, round "dots" or squares) which are attached (e.g., sewn, adhered, etc.) to the opposing surfaces to be fastened. The first component features tiny hooks; the second features even smaller and "hairier" loops. When the two components are pressed together, the hooks catch in the loops and the two pieces fasten or bind temporarily.[4] When separated, by pulling or peeling the two surfaces apart, the velcro strips make a distinctive "ripping" sound. The first Velcro sample was made of cotton, which proved impractical[5] and was replaced by Nylon and polyester.[6] Velcro fasteners made of Teflon loops, polyester hooks, and glass backing are used in aerospace applications, e.g. on space shuttles.[6] Variations on the standard Velcro hook and loop fasteners include hooks on both faces, bu

tons, zippers, laces, and buckles. George de Mestral's patent expired in 1978, but the term Velcro is a registered trademark in most countries. Generic terminology for these fasteners includes "hook and loop", "burr" and "touch" fasteners. While the company states that it does not actually sell any product named "Velcro",[7] the Velcro brand is an example of a genericized trademark, its brand name having become the generic term in many languages. The Velcro company headquarters is in Manchester, New Hampshire, USA. The hook-and-loop fastener was conceived in 1941 by Swiss engineer, Georges de Mestral[2][8][9] who lived in Commugny, Switzerland. The idea came to him one day after returning from a hunting trip with his dog in the Alps. He took a close look at the burrs (seeds) of burdock that kept sticking to his clothes and his dog's fur. He examined them under a microscope, and noted their hundreds of "hooks" that caught on anything with a loop, such as clothing, animal fur, or hair.[5] He saw the possibility of binding two materials reversibly in a simple fashion if he could figure out how to duplicate the hooks and loops.[2][9]. This inspiration from nature or the copying of nature's mechanisms (called bionics or biomimesis) is viewed by some like Steven Vogel[10] or Werner Nachtigall[11] as a key example.