Radio Timeline

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The Radio Timeline Project Page

The advance of Science and Technology depends on individuals with a curiosity who strive to build on the work of others...NO ONE INDIVIDUAL INVENTOR INVENTED THE RADIO !

List of Inventors / Scientists you may be asked to research includes (spelling may vary slightly in your sources):

Hans (Christian) Oersted (compass experiment - current makes magnetic field)

Michael Faraday (magnetic induction - moving magnet/coil makes current)

James Clerk Maxwell (equations describing Electromagnetic [EM] waves)

Thomas Edison (thermionic emission leads to design of vacuum tube)

Heinrich Hertz ('spark' EM wave transmission experiment)

Nikola Tesla (awarded radio transmission radio patent posthumously)

Guglielmo Marconi (famous for many radio transmission experiments)

John Ambrose Fleming (improved vacuum tube - diode)

Reginald (Aubrey) Fessenden (first AM radio broadcast)

Edward Armstrong (wide-band FM radio)

YOU MUST DO NIKOLA TESLA as one of your Inventors / Scientists.

Exactly how many Inventors / Scientists you must include in your timeline will be discussed in class.  Other inventors / scientists may be announced in class as well.  Please take notes in class at all times!!!  The discussions we have in class about radio and invention may help you in your research.  Otherwise, you are on your own.

The inventors / scientists listed above must be mapped as a timeline in chronological order of their contribution to the development of the radio.  

Additional notes and fine print: The equations that Maxwell developed to describe electromagnetism and the propagation of electromagnetic waves are beyond the scope of this course.  I suggest you take a High School Physics course if you have interest in his studies.

Many books and people credit Marconi alone with the invention of the radio.  This is an oversimplification in my opinion. You will find out that Tesla received an important patent for the radio, and additionally many scientists built on the work of others, so that both Tesla could develop wireless transmission, and so that Marconi could further Tesla's work.  Remember my belief that no one inventor or scientist built the radio, without learning from the work of others.  Keep this in mind as you do your research.

If you want to, skip to the notes on suggested research links....

If you do the project in Inspiration (preferred):

You need to research, cite your text research with MLA style citations and report on these details below.  Images can be cited with URL's.

Year and place of invention / important discovery
Picture and description of the inventor
What each inventor discovered / invented (related to the development of the radio)
What was the impact on society of their discovery / invention ? (bonus points possible for these nodes, if project is submitted on time)


see the note below if you still have questions

Your timeline should begin looking something like this:

(click on the image below for a larger and clearer view - sample is in progress)

radio_time.gif (8805 bytes)

Reminder: Each node needs a graphic, and an MLA cited note. All major details go in the note.  The graphic for the inventor/scientist should be a picture.  As may be necessary, the notes for the assignment may span two pages, therefore always check your diagram before printing using Print Preview. 

  See a sample timeline strand with Hans Christian Oersted..........

If you forgot to take notes in class, follow this link for even more on exact details of what goes in each node/note/graphic.

How to hand this project in to me...(Inspiration)

Print both the outline (notes) and diagram (picture) views when you hand in your project.  Do a print preview before you do so, as this may be multiple pages ! 

Review the all important project rubric for Inspiration users

All notes must be in your own writing otherwise you forfeit the credit for that note.  Do not use quote marks to circumvent this requirement.  See my warnings on plagiarism...

Suggested research links for this project...

Begin with:

The school's library subscription resources like EBSCO, PROQUEST, and Student Resource Center....or even a book !
or Internet directory (DMOZ on radio) 
or try get the idea !  Try more than just one website !!!
Try to avoid the usual boring Google search...

Be very careful as different websites cite different dates for the same invention or discovery !!!!  How can you tell which one is correct?  Always check more than one website to be sure !!!

For even more links on the complex technology of radio:

See these links about radio technology  

  See these links about how sound waves work 

For the general history and impact on society (Inspiration bonus nodes) consider reading... 

  It has been said that "no other invention has changed people's lives more than radio..."

The rest of the research on bonus nodes (Inspiration only) is on your own....

I really suggest you visit the library!

Alternate assignment (needs my approval): 

If you are approved to do this project using Timeliner:

radio_timeline.gif (8765 bytes)

For each scientist / inventor you need:

Picture and short bio of scientist / inventor 

Year of discovery / invention (not the birth date of inventor)

Description (in your own words) of the discovery / invention

MLA citations for your research

Link to an important website that has good information

All notes and descriptions must be in your own words otherwise you forfeit the credit for that inventor.  Do not use quote marks to circumvent this requirement.

More details and grading of the alternate assignment will be discussed in class....please see me for this.

Information about team building of a crystal radio!

See the components and design of a crystal radio

Checkout the experimental radio experiments page

Helpful hint for those who need a linear date organizer !

Download this sample organizer (has an MS-Word list of inventors) to help you take notes.  It is optional for your use only - DO NOT HAND IT IN TO ME !   I DO NOT WANT TO SEE IT.  IF YOU DONT WANT TO USE IT, THEN DON'T USE IT.  WHAT REALLY COUNTS IS THE FINAL TIMELINE !  The grid is only to help you get organized!

(click on the image below for a larger and clearer view of the list of inventors / scientists)

radio_chron.gif (13887 bytes)


home All original content and curriculum on this website is copyright   2002-2007 Norman I. Silverman, Technology Education Teacher,  and may not be reproduced in any form for any purpose without my permission.