June 1945 Radio-Craft
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics.
See articles from Radio-Craft,
published 1929 - 1953. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
The June 1945 edition of Radio-Craft published a death
notice for diode electron tube inventor
Sir Ambrose Fleming. The date given was April 19th, but every
source I can find says he died on April 18th. With having been born
on November 29, 1849, that made the good fellow 95½ years
old. According to a calculator on the
TimeAndDate.com website, that's a grand total of 34,900 days.
Who's going to argue over a potential 0.00287% error?
Let's see, as of February 4, 2015, I have
plagued the Earth for 20,625 days >:)
Sir Ambrose Fleming
Ambrose Fleming inventor of radio's first vacuum tube, the Fleming
valve, died April 19 in Sidmouth, Devon, at the age of 95. Fleming's
fame in the radio world rests not only on his discovery of the radio
possibilities inherent in the "Edison effect" between a hot and
cold electrode in an evacuated space, but also on one of the earliest
fundamental treatises on radio, published early in the century.
This book, which contained more than 1700 pages, was for a number
of years the authority on the subject, and is now regarded as one
of the classics of radio literature.
The invention of the Fleming valve was the result of researches
made while working for Marconi (at which time he designed the wireless
signal apparatus of the famous station in Cornwall from which the
first transatlantic message was transmitted in 1901). The object
was to discover a more sensitive and stable detector than any in
use. The new "valve" while not more sensitive than the detectors
commonly employed at the time, was remarkably more stable and reliable.
Its real significance was, however, that it paved the way for our
modern electron tubes, which came into existence when Lee DeForest
put a third element - the grid - into the two-element Fleming valve.
Knighted for his contributions to radio-electronic science, he
became Sir Ambrose Fleming in 1929. He was the last survivor of
the group of radio pioneers in England which included Marconi, Clerk
Maxwell and Sir Oliver Lodge.
Posted February 5, 2015