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AH, the good old...

RADAR   D a y s

 
RADAR history

Before RADAR could be born, scientists first needed to understand the principles of radio waves. In 1887, a physicist named Heinrich Hertz began experimenting with radio waves in his laboratory in Germany. He found that radio waves could be transmitted through different materials. Some materials reflected the radio waves. He developed a system to measure the speed of the waves. The data he collected, and the information he uncovered, encouraged further scientific investigation of radio.

Hertz's experiments were the foundation for the development of radio communication, and, later, RADAR.

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Heinrich Hertz (112k)

Thirty years later, scientists around the world were researching the practical use of radio waves to detect and locate objects. Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, great effort was put into developing a system by which you could transmit and receive radio waves, providing useful information.

By the 1940s, and the outbreak of World War II, the first useful RADAR systems were in place. Germany, France, Great Britain, and the United States all used RADAR to navigate their ships, guide their airplanes, and detect enemy craft before they attacked.

In the midst of war, the most significant peacetime application of RADAR was discovered. During the war, RADAR operators continually found precipitation, like rain and snow, appearing in their RADAR fields. Scientists had not known that RADAR would be sensitive enough to detect precipitation. Only during the war did the use of RADAR to study weather become obvious.

Today, RADAR is an essential tool for analyzing and predicting the weather.

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The History of RADAR (725k)

 
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