1894 __ Wireless signals across the Bristol Channel
‣ Comment : Sir William Preece signals across the Bristol Channel by induction. — William Preece, assisted by Marconi, gave an important lecture at Toynbee Hall on 12 December 1896.The Press who attended,headlined Marconi as ‘the inventor ofwireless’.This description prompted a strong reaction from scientific circles and Oliver Lodge,who also had made valuable contributions,was outraged. [...] One comment made by Preece during his lecture,which was not borne out,was that the Post Office had decided to spare no expense in experimenting with the apparatus,and one ofthe first trials would be from Penarth to an island in the (Bristol) Channel.This was the path used by Preece for his induction experiments. The trials took place,but no money came from the Post Office. Preece went on to say that he had the greatest faith in the apparatus:‘The curious thing about it is that there is no new principle introduced.The first man who taught us how to generate these waves was Hertz,and they have been developed by others,but in making practical use ofthese waves,Mr.Marconi has invented devices which are highly novel and very beautiful,and when they are patented and can be made public,I think they will be admired by everybody.’ Marconi did not claim novelty,only improvements,these improvements were the subject ofthe 12039 patent.‘My invention relates in great measure to the manner in which the above apparatus is made and connected together.’Nothing false was ever claimed by either Marconi or Preece. More experiments continued in the following year (1897) with the assistance of Preece,with whom Marconi remained a great friend for years,although Preece sometimes had to take a formal position because ofhis Post Office appointment. (“Train Times, Irish Whiskey, Bad Weather, Potage and Poldhu”, In Europhysics News, Volume 28, Number 4, septembre 1997, pp. 119-123)
‣ French comment : Série d'essais réussis de transmissions télégraphique et téléphonique par W. Preece dans le Canal de Bristol. Dans une communication à la "Society of Arts", le 21 février 1894, Preece déclare: « Il serait tout-à-fait facile de parler entre la France et l'Angleterre à travers le détroit de Douvres ? ». (Journ. of the Soc. of Arts, Feb. 23, 1894)
‣ Source : Ledos, J-J. (1996), "1996 CENTENAIRE DE LA RADIO ?", Article publié in "CAHIERS D'HISTOIRE DE LA RADIODIFFUSION", n° 49, Juin-Août 1996.
‣ Urls : http://web.chr.free.fr/info/detail.php?SID=955866757&ID=60 (last visited ) http://www.springerlink.com/content/u01rh1012l441140/fulltext.pdf (last visited )
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