Monthly Archives: January 2015

A Fine RADAR Map of NYC, 1946

JF Ptak Science Books   Quick Post

Radar map nyc

The history of RADAR (RAdio Deection And Ranging, and something I’ve always written in caps, for whatever that is worth) is absolutely not what I’m thinking about now–that is a long story with lots of twists and turns, complicated, complex–and it ranges depending upon location as for the most part RADAR (from the 1930’s anyway) was developed in secret, kept as a military secret.  And that’s because it was a very important development, with the victor of the Battle of the Beams being the possible victor, period.  

Radar246

All I want to do presently is note the significance of this particular pamphlet in the history of RADAR. This work was printed by PHILCO Corporation, (and dated January 4, 1946), and has an inserted leaflet stating that this “makes public for the first time the salient facts about the Corporation’s development and production of airborne radar equipment for the United States Army and Navy”.  PHILCO and other companies made significant contributions to the war capacity of the Allied forces, and–for this company in particular–much of that went unknown for quite some time afterwards, and of course there are some stories that just won’t get told. But for PHILCO the story gets told here.  

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Panoramic Periscope, 1915

JF Ptak Science Books   Quick Post

 
Periscope613good
This interesting and arresting images appears in Scientific American Supplement, October 23, 1915 (page 269).  It is an excellent view of topside from 30′ or so below.  The article describes simple, compound, tele-objective, direct-reflected, panoramic, and periscopes with annular fields–sort of simple, but not really.  In any event the panoramic periscope gave a view of a directed point-of-view as well as a slender (but versatile) 360o.

By: Ptak Science Books
Via: Feedbin Starred Entries
Source: http://j.mp/1yNZdo7

Blues Build the Temple

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud
“Twenty-One Prints on 285-Gram Watercolor Paper / Foil-Stamped, Letterpressed Sleeve”
(quite a stunning object)
Previously: Mapmaker

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud

From the print series Blues Build the Temple by Trevor Naud (more…)

Ferris Wheel Tank, 1915

JF Ptak Science Books   Quick Post

A few days ago I was having a look at a Large & Impossible Tank, and today I came across this fabulous beauty from the Electrical Experimenter for February, 1915.   

This 45′ monster would be somehow powered by electricity though there is no discernible power source or power train, and it would be steered by a gyroscope. (The use of the gyroscope is interesting–the idea of it acting as a control mechanism had been successfully introduced in the Whitehead torpedo in 1905, and used as stabilizing agents in airplanes and ships by 1910, and found in the first gyroscopic repeater compass by 1911, so the magazine and writer pretty much had their finger on the national gyroscopic pulse of the time.) Being hit by defensive cannon fire was said to have been not too much of a problem because the shells would mostly pass through the lattice work of the structure.  The armament in the suspended armored buckets would be “the same as British tanks”–the buckets also came equipped with a bomb chute (if you look closely you’ll see one in action here, the destroyer dropping a bomb on itself) for, well, bombing.  

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