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New York City Museum of Science and Industry

Abstract

THE New York City Museum of Science and Industry was formally opened on the evening of February 11 in a novel manner. At 3.35 a.m. G.M.T. on February 12 (10.35 p.m. February 11, in New York), Sir William Bragg was seated in Faraday's old study at the Royal Institution before the table at which Faraday used to work; and he gave a short address to a distinguished gathering in the New York Museum, including Prof. Albert Einstein, Dr. F. B. Jewett of the Bell Telephone Laboratories, and the Mayor of New York. The American listeners then heard Sir William strike a match, with which he lit an old candle set in a candle-stick of Faraday's time; in a few instants, the entrance hall of the New York Museum was flooded with the light of two rows of mercury vapour lamps. The means by which this feat was accomplished provides an interesting demonstration of one of the many marvellous attainments of modern applied science which have resulted from Faraday's pioneer work of more than a hundred years ago. When Sir William lit the candle, the light was incident on a photo-electric cell, and the resulting electrical impulse was amplified and transmitted over telephone lines to the Post Office trans-Atlantic radio station at Rugby. The signal passing over the radio link was received at Netrong, U.S.A., by the American Telephone and Telegraph Company's station, and then re-transmitted by telephone line to the New York Museum of Science and Industry, where it was made to light a Westinghouse lamp of fifty years ago. The light from this lamp was picked up by another photo-electric cell, which in turn actuated the switches controlling the mercury vapour lamps flood-light ing the hall of the Museum.

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New York City Museum of Science and Industry. Nature 137, 307 (1936). https://doi.org/10.1038/137307a0

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