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The of Lodge-Muirhead System Wireless Telegraphy

Nature volume 68, pages 247250 (16 July 1903) | Download Citation



THE system of wireless telerraphy which Sir Oliver Lodge and Dr. A. Muirhead have been developing for some years has, within, the past few months, been brought to a degree of perfection which justifies the inventors in the belief that it is now of practical commercial value. Thanks to the courtesy of Messrs. Muirhead and Co., we have had an opportunity of seeing the system at work at a small experimental installation which has been put up in a field adjoining Messrs. Muirhead's works at Elmers End, Kent. At this station signals were being transmitted to and received from a similar installation at Downe. The distance between the two stations is only six or seven, miles, but the chalky nature of the Kentish soil and the fact that the station at Elmers End lies in a hollow make this distance equivalent to eight or nine times-as much over water. Experiments which have been made under the conditions which would obtain in the practical application of the system for maritime work and also over the Admiralty sixty-mile range have shown that, with the same power and the same adjustments as are required between Elmers End and' Downe, thoroughly satisfactory communication can be maintained across sixty miles of ocean. Considerations of distance are, however, of secondary importance in estimating the merits of wireless telegraphy systems, for the recent work of Mr. Marconi and others has made it jdear enough that, given sufficient power, almost any range can be attained. Trustworthiness, clearness, the design of circuits and apparatus, and-the possibility of successful syntonisation are factors of greater importance. Looked at from this point of view, the Lodge-Muirhead system presents several? novel and interesting features which show that, though it may be one of the latest to come into the field of practical wireless telegraphy, it is likely to prove one of the most efficient. Most noteworthy feature of all is the remarkably delicate coherer which has been finally evolved from numerous experiments, a coherer which not only promises to be accurate and trustworthy in practical work, but also possesses several advantages from an experimental point of view, a characteristic of no small importance in a piece of apparatus which has to be employed in an art in which there is so much to be learnt.

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