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Wireless in the Boer War

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1 Author(s)
Austin, B.A. ; Liverpool Univ., UK

The Boer War in South Africa (1899-1902) was the first occasion in which wireless communications were used in a military conflict. The paper traces the history from the point of view of both the British and the Boer forces: both of whom had intentions to use this latest invention on the field of battle. Marconi's apparatus, in its most elementary form, went with the British Army to the front, but failed. The Boer's German equipment was captured and never saw service. The Army soon rejected wireless but the Royal Navy acquired the apparatus and made it work. No doubt circumstances and personalities played their part but by far the major factor in determining success and failure was the natural electromagnetic environment. All these components of a fascinating saga are discussed

Published in:

100 Years of Radio., Proceedings of the 1995 International Conference on

Date of Conference:

5-7 Sep 1995