Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Scientific advances through military research

Experiments with a New Polarizing Photo-Chronograph, applied to the measurement of the velocity of projectiles by Dr. Albert Cushing Crehore and Dr. George Owen Squier (published in 1895) was, according to the stamps on the cover, presented with “Compliments of Geo. O. Squier” to the United States Embassy Military Attache in London on December 1 1895. The Intelligence Division of the War Office (Great Britain) stamped it as received December 9 1895.

Photo-Chronography was an experimental method of measuring speed by taking a series of photographs of a moving object.

Squier himself graduated from West Point in 1887 and received a PhD from Johns Hopkins in 1893. He was a great experimenter and inventor in the fields of radio and electricity and the military applications of new research. Squier was instrumental in establishing the Aeronautical Division of the U.S. Signal Corps, which evolved into the U.S. Air Force. He was the first U.S. military officer to fly in a plane and in World War I was Chief Signal Officer, with the rank of Major-General.

However, Squier’s most far-reaching invention, in 1922, was something he referred to as Wired Radio… in 1934 he officially changed its name to MUZAK, the name still familiar to people in elevators, lobbies, on hold… a mixed blessing, at best.

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