Inventing Schemes and Strategies: The Making and Selling of the Fessenden Oscillator

  title={Inventing Schemes and Strategies: The Making and Selling of the Fessenden Oscillator},
  author={Gary Lewis Frost},
  journal={Technology and Culture},
  pages={462 - 488}
  • G. Frost
  • Published 1 July 2001
  • History
  • Technology and Culture
Reginald Fessenden’s pioneering work in radio has been the subject of much scholarly attention, but historians have neglected his equally impressive career in the field of underwater acoustic technology.1 In 1913, as a consulting engineer for the Submarine Signal Company (SSC), he invented the Fessenden Oscillator, a versatile electromechanical device that launched two revolutionary maritime technologies: underwater telegraphy and underwater echo ranging, a method of determining the distances… 

Figures from this paper

Sonar: Empire, Media, and the Politics of Underwater Sound
This article traces the development of acoustic navigation media, or “sonar,” in the first half of the twentieth century, focusing on the relationships forged between underwater sound, electric
This thesis will be about to establish wireless communication with the sonar, underwater wireless communication, and define and apply a methodology for designing new operations in relevant and environmentally controlled scenarios.
Improving the Capabilities of Swath Bathymetry Sidescan Using Transmit Beamforming and Pulse Coding
The improvement in achievable SNR and the reduction in multipath interference provided by the contributions in this thesis further strengthens the importance of SBS iv systems and angle-of-arrival based processing, as an alternative to beamforming, in underwater three dimensional imaging and mapping.
Design and characterisation of long period grating (LPG)-based optical fibre sensors for acoustic wave detection
Fibre optic sensors have demonstrated a broad range of commercial potential due to their intrinsic characteristics such as low loss, very small size, light weight and immunity to electromagnetic
Scientific Fact or Engineering Specification? The U.S. Navy's Experiments on Long-Range Wireless Telegraphy Circa 1910
In 1910 and 1913, the U.S. Naval Wireless Telegraphic Laboratory led by Louis Winslow Austin conducted a series of trans-Atlantic tests for the high-power spark-gap and electric-arc dischargers of
Listening in the dark: audio surveillance, communication technologies, and the submarine threat during the First World War
Abstract Within the context of the first truly global industrial conflict, all belligerents in the Great War had access to new and adapted technologies including aircraft, sophisticated artillery,
Sediment Laden Ice Detection using Broadband Acoustic Backscattering Measurements from Calibration Targets in Ice
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix List of Abbreviations and Symbols Used . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . x Acknowledgements . . . . . . . .
PolyCMUTs for ultrasonic nondestructive testing of carbon fiber reinforced plastic – a feasibility study


The Continuous Wave: Technology and American Radio, 1900-1932
The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press, which preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions.
Submarine signaling: The protection of shipping by a wall of sound and other uses of the submarine telegraph oscillator
  • R. F. Blake
  • Physics
    Proceedings of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers
  • 1914
Submarine signaling has been greatly advanced by the introduction of a powerful sound transmitter and receiver called the “Fessenden telegraph oscillator.” By means of this, telegraph messages can be
The Loss of the “Titanic”
THE terrible loss of life on account of the disaster to the Titanic has directed emphatic attention to various aspects of the employment of wireless telegraphy in times of crisis at sea. The point
Alternator for one hundred thousand cycles
  • E. Alexanderson
  • History
    Proceedings of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers
  • 1909
Before entering into a description of the form of generator dealt with in this paper, it may be of interest to give a short review of the history of the high-frequency alternator. Heretofore the
The Physicists: The History of a Scientific Community in Modern America
This text provides an account of the coming of age of physics in America, portraying the scientists who became a powerful force in bringing the world into a revolutionary era. The book ranges widely
Strategic Determinism in Technology Selection: The Electric Battleship and U.S. Naval-Industrial Relations
In May 1904, Admiral Jackie Fisher, the driving force behind the creation of the British dreadnought battleship, declared that ship design must be dictated by strategy.' Fisher's pronouncement
Men, Machines, and Modern Times.
An engaging look at how we have learned to live with innovation and new technologies through history.People have had trouble adapting to new technology ever since (perhaps) the inventor of the wheel
Inventing American Broadcasting 1899-1922
Such organizations as AT& T, General Electric, and the U.S. Navy played major roles in radio's evolution, but early press coverage may have decisively steered radio in the direction of mass
Syntony and Spark: The Origins of Radio
This book offers a readable narrative of the science and technology of early radio combined with sociological and economic analysis of how radio changed our livesOriginally published in 1985.The