People old and young enjoy waxing nostalgic about and learning some of the history of early electronics.
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Today is the 78th anniversary of the
Hindenburg disaster at the Naval Air Station in Lakehurst, New
Jersey. It is the RF Cafe logo theme for today
(see upper left page corner). Ironically,
last night while looking through the July 1936 edition of Radio-Craft
magazine, I saw this news article reporting on preparations being
made in the onboard radio and direction finding equipment for Hindenburg's
maiden voyage from its home base in Frankfurt, Germany to North
America. No one at the time of this article suspected such a terrible
fate was looming les than a year later. Theories abound regarding
the cause of the fatal fire, but there is no doubt that a combination
of highly flammable hydrogen gas and an also highly flammable graphite
dope (used to make it conductive and lightning
impervious) impregnated cloth envelope was responsible for
the incredibly rapid consumption of the craft by flames. The stigma
left on airships due to the Hindenburg inferno prevents to this
day the successful use of the vessels for passenger transport, even
though modern methods and materials would make them very safe and
Zeppelin Radio Equipment
The Zeppelin directional finder and radio
With the announcement last month that 2 sister-ships to the huge
Hindenburg have been started in a concerted effort by Germany to
absorb the transatlantic air travel - as well as the completion
of plans for the first crossing of the Hindenburg, much interest
has been given to the radio equipment.
This installation which rivals the equipment on many of the finest
liners will permit passengers to "phone" to London, Paris, Berlin,
Rio de Janeiro, New York or Buenos Aires while cruising over any
point of the Atlantic!
This airship carries a 200-watt short-wave transmitter with a
frequency range of 4,280 to 17,700 kc. (17 to 70 meters). In addition
to the short-wave equipment, the airship carries a 125-watt long-wave
transmitter covering the wavelengths from 575 to 2,700 meters.
The ship also carries complete direction finding equipment to
assist in navigating through fog and blind landing devices.
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Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference
material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The Internet
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