Elec­tron­ics & Tech

Chicago Sun-Times (Sunday) - - MADE IN ILLINOIS -

A.L.P. Niles

Wil­liam M. Brown founded this light­ing com­po­nent com­pany in his Skokie apart­ment as BBS in 1955. He changed the name to ALP in 1972 for prag­matic rea­sons; he wanted it to come up first in the Yel­low Pages.

As­tro-Physics Mach­es­ney Park

Am­a­teur as­tronomer and elec­tri­cal en­gi­neer Roland Chris­ten wanted to take bet­ter pho­tos of the stars, so he took mat­ters into his own hands. His com­pany has been de­vel­op­ing hand­made tele­scopes and ac­ces­sories for the ad­vanced am­a­teur since 1975.

Ash Man­u­fac­tur­ing Inc. Plain­field

Founded in 1961, Ash sup­plies ob­ser­va­tory domes to stargaz­ers in 49 states and 70 dif­fer­ent coun­tries through­out the world.

Con­air Ran­toul

This mas­sive man­u­fac­turer of hair dry­ers, curl­ing irons, straight­en­ers and other per­sonal groom­ing tech­nol­ogy makes its prod­ucts in Cen­tral Illi­nois.

Elastec Carmi

Es­tab­lished in 1990 in South­ern Illi­nois, Elastec is now the largest man­u­fac­turer of oil-spill-cleanup and sur­face-wa­ter-pollution equip­ment in North Amer­ica. It also has a Co­coa, Fla., fa­cil­ity that makes equip­ment for trash, de­bris and sed­i­ment con­trol.

First Alert Aurora

This com­pany de­signs, en­gi­neers and tests its safety prod­ucts — in­clud­ing car­bon monox­ide de­tec­tors, smoke alarms and fire ex­tin­guish­ers — in the western sub­urbs.

For­est City Gear Roscoe

Since 1955, For­est City has made gears for use in ap­pli­ca­tions that range from med­i­cal de­vices to mo­tor­cy­cles, air­planes to au­to­ma­tion, even NASA’s Mars Cu­rios­ity Rover.

Frasca In­ter­na­tional, Inc. Ur­bana

For­mer Navy avi­a­tor Rudy Frasca started his flight sim­u­la­tor busi­ness out of his garage. Sixty years later, Frasca In­ter­na­tional em­ploys 180 peo­ple and has pro­duced more than 2,800 cus­tom sim­u­la­tors for more than 80 coun­tries.

Legacy Au­dio Spring­field

It be­gan in a garage in the Mid­west three decades ago, but Legacy Au­dio now makes au­dio equip­ment that has been used in Sony, Epic and Arista record­ing stu­dios and by Grammy award-win­ning pro­duc­ers such as Rick Ru­bin and L.A. Reid.

Mo­torola Schaumburg

The telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions gi­ant, which has sev­eral pro­duc­tion fa­cil­i­ties in Illi­nois, has left plenty of mas­sive foot­prints, none big­ger than in 1969 when a Mo­torola ra­dio transpon­der aboard the Apollo 11 lu­nar mod­ule re­layed the first words from the moon to Earth.

Omni Gear Joliet

Omni makes pre­ci­sion gears in di­am­e­ters that range from a 1/2 inch to eight feet. Its gears are used not only in oil pro­duc­tion equip­ment, but also in ro­bots, print­ing and the man­u­fac­ture of cor­ru­gated card­board.

RR Don­nelly Chicago

This in­ter­na­tional cor­po­ra­tion — with some 42,000 em­ploy­ees serv­ing 50,000 clients — started as a printer in Chicago 150 years ago. Fa­mous for print­ing the Yel­low Pages and the Sears cat­a­log, much of its busi­ness now takes place on­line, though it still has a cus­tom print­ing fa­cil­ity in St. Charles.

Frasca In­ter­na­tional, Inc.

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