There’s Music in the Air for Airplane Travelers (Apr, 1940)

There’s Music in the Air for Airplane Travelers
AS THEY fly to their destinations, passengers on planes of a major transcontinental air line can now listen to broadcast radio programs. Stations are tuned in on a master set and the programs are piped to individual loudspeakers housed in padded units that hang over the seat backs of those passengers who desire to listen in.


I’ve always loved that the Heaviside Layer sounds like the name describes its properties, but was actually just discovered by a guy named Heaviside. Obviously it confused the writer or editor of this piece because they spelled it “Heavyside”. I wonder if there is a term for eponyms that sound like they are descriptive words.


THE nation’s most unique radio station, which has the only permit ever granted by the Federal Communications Commission to transmit continuously on all radio frequencies, is in operation at Kensington, Maryland. Known as special experimental station W3XFE, the all-wave transmitter sends only to itself, using special apparatus.

Circular-Type Radio Antenna (Dec, 1942)

Circular-Type Radio Antenna

Designed for mobile use, this General Electric “doughnut” antenna shown at the recent convention of the Institute of Radio Engineers, can be installed directly above the roof of an automobile and is claimed to give the same results as the tall whip-type (vertical) antennas commonly seen on police squad cars. Efficient for both receiving and transmitting, it provides equal radiation of radio waves in all directions horizontally. The demonstration model was mounted on a toy train.

Signals from the Stars (Jul, 1952)

Signals from the Stars

EVER since it was first indicated that the static present in the output of radio receivers was due in part to physical disturbances on the sun a new field of research has attracted popular scientific interest. It is radio astronomy, whose equipment and observers listen not to man made responses, but instead to continuous “static” from the stars. That cosmic radio noise exists was realized as far back as 1931. Early records proved it to be most intense when receivers probed toward the Milky Way, or lengthwise through our enormous watch-shaped galaxy.


Perched on ledges high above the street, two window washers, one in New York and the other in Chicago, communicated by radio recently in a novel broadcast sent out over a nationwide hook-up. With portable transmitters strapped to their backs, the workmen carried on a lively conversation about their work for the entertainment of the listening audience scattered all over the United States.


Besides the obvious impracticality of broadcast power the “one frequency per person” cell phone service is totally unfeasible. Car phones worked using one frequency per call (not receiver) up until cell phones came out, but it was able to handle about 30 simultaneous calls per city.

The idea that your calls are safe from eavesdropping because you have a specially tuned radio is also incredibly naive. All you’d need was a general radio with a tuner and you could listen to all the calls.


by Thomas J. Naughton

The Klystron, greatest radio advance, transmits energy without use of wires!

LIKE schoolboys in a classroom, more than 100 deans and professors of Eastern universities stood in a laboratory of the Westing-house plant at Bloomfield, N. J. Each of the learned gentlemen held in his hand a light-bulb with a few inches of bare wire attached; all of them expectantly watched the Westing-house engineer who was tinkering with two small doughnut-shaped, contraptions, connected to a six-foot loudspeaker-like horn, at the front of the room. The engineer straightened up.

Beating the Celestial Strip-Tease (Jan, 1942)

Beating the Celestial Strip-Tease

by Bill Williams

THE Eskimos call them “the dancing souls of the dead.” The ancient Norsemen said they were Valkyries carrying warriors to Valhalla. Modem scientists call them a “celestial strip-tease.” But communication engineers call the Northern Lights a plain pain in the neck.

The Northern Lights—the Aurora Borealis —have been the subject of superstition and folk-lore for ages. There have been tales as fabulous as the eerie lights themselves—of immense radium mines in the Arctic that glow at night, of frigid goddesses of the glacial ice, of vast fires that bum beyond the rim of the earth.

So long as the ghostly Gay White Way of the Heavens did nothing more to disturb us than frighten a few superstitious people, scientists paid no particular attention to them.

Wounded Veterans Discover New Joys in Wireless Music (Mar, 1922)

Wounded Veterans Discover New Joys in Wireless Music

Radio Outfit Now Becomes Hospital “Nurse”

By Armstrong Perry

DO you know what “ether” means to thousands of weary hospital patients these days?

It no longer suggests shock and the painful after effects of an operation. Rather, the word brings thoughts of pleasure, recreation, and amusement. For the radiophone has at last entered the hospital— where, above all places, it belongs—and musical entertainments, broadcasted daily through the ether from dozens of transmitting stations, are now being borne into hospital wards and orphan asylums, bringing comfort and delight to the lonely inmates.

No Static on Micro-Waves (Jan, 1932)

No Static on Micro-Waves

LIVELY interest has been aroused, among television and short-wave enthusiasts, in New York City, by the present activities of the National Broadcasting Company, in regard to experiments on ultra-short waves. Apparatus is being set up in the tower of the lofty Empire State Building, and short antennas erected about its mooring mast. While official information has not been forthcoming as to wavelengths and schedules, it is evident from the dimensions of the antenna that the work is on ultrashort waves, such as are now being similarly tested in Holland and Germany.

MOBILE STATIONS Broadcast Major EVENTS (Jun, 1937)


HISTORY in the making is now brought into the homes of millions of American people through the use of mobile radio stations capable of broadcasting from the actual scene of any major event or catastrophe. Carrying broadcasting and receiving equipment, announcers and engineers, the mobile stations can rush to fires, flood areas, political and other events at a moment’s notice.