Military Review

“... How happy I am that not abroad, but in Russia a new means of communication has been opened”

“... How happy I am that not abroad, but in Russia a new means of communication has been opened” 110 years ago, 13 January 1906, the great Russian scientist, radio inventor Alexander Stepanovich Popov passed away. The name of A.S. Popov is inscribed in gold letters in history Russian and world science. The result of his many years of experience in the field of radio communications was the creation of the world's first radio receiver in 1895. True, Popov’s priority in this area is disputed in the West, where his name is almost forgotten, and other scientists, G. Marconi, O. Lodge, and N. Tesla are considered to be the creators of the radio.

Alexander Stepanovich Popov was born 4 (16) in March 1859, in the village of Turyinsky Rudniki (now Krasnoturyinsk, Sverdlovsk region). In the family of his father, the local priest Stepan Petrovich Popov (1827 — 1897), and his mother, Anna Stefanovna, besides Alexander there were also 6 children. At 10, Alexander Popov was sent to the Dalmatovo Theological School, in which his older brother Raphael taught Latin. There he studied from 1869 to 1871 years. In 1871, Alexander Popov was transferred to the third class of the Yekaterinburg Theological School. At that time his elder sister Maria Stepanovna lived with her family in Yekaterinburg. Her husband, the priest Ignatius Levitsky, was a very wealthy man. After graduating from a religious school, in 1873, Alexander entered the Perm Theological Seminary.

After graduating from general education classes at the Perm Theological Seminary (1877 year), Alexander successfully passed the entrance exams to the Physics and Mathematics Faculty of St. Petersburg University. After graduating from the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics of St. Petersburg University in 1882, he was engaged in research activities and taught physics and electrical engineering at a number of technical schools. In 1901, he became a professor of physics, and in 1905, he became rector of the St. Petersburg Electrotechnical Institute.

The scientific interests of Popov lay in the field of electrodynamics. The scientist set a goal to design a wireless alarm system for use on navy based on electromagnetic waves. At the first stage, Popov found a sensitive indicator of electromagnetic waves - he became the radio conductor E. Branly. At the second stage of the experiment, Popov created the radio directly. By the spring of 1895, a reliable and sensitive device was ready. At a meeting of the physical department of the Russian Physicochemical Society on April 25 (May 7), 1895, Popov presented a scientific report on the invention of wireless communications and demonstrated its work. In memory of this event since May 1945, Radio Day is celebrated in Russia on May 7. Improving the transmitting and receiving devices, the Russian scientist achieved a signal transmission range of 150 km. Popov also studied x-rays and made the first in Russia x-ray images of objects and parts of the human body.

In the USSR, Popov’s priority in the invention of radio was generally recognized, while in other countries this merit is attributed to the Italian Guglielmo Marconi or Nikola Tesla. After the collapse of the USSR, this point of view found supporters in the domestic media. The authors of several articles and TV programs claim that the Russian scientist did not invent anything. They say there are no documents, no testimony from contemporaries, who say that his receiver appeared before June 1896, when Marconi submitted to the British Patent Office an application for the wireless telegraph he had invented. In addition, it was suggested that Popov created a “half-finished product” of a radio receiver, which actually did not work, and Marconi brought it to mind and made the new device widely available. According to another version, Popov had found out somewhere about Marconi’s invention and was simply trying to repeat it - without much success, however. As a result, the opinion is being promoted that the glory of Popov was created only under Stalin, when Soviet agitators sought to “prescribe” all epoch-making inventions of humanity in Russia.

In reality, Popov’s priority in the invention of radio is based on several facts. 25 April (7 May) 1895, the scientist spoke about the device he created at a meeting of the Russian Physico-Chemical Society. Unfortunately, neither the transcript of the meeting, nor the feedback from its participants, nor the article in the Kronstadt Gazette newspaper on the subject matter of the device. The provision was corrected by an article by Popov in the Vestnik RFHO, which was published in January 1896 of the year: it contained the device circuit for transmitting and receiving radio signals. 12 March in the same RFHO, Popov demonstrated a transmission over a distance of about two hundred meters of a radiogram with the words "Heinrich Hertz". And Marconi only 2 June filed in London an application for his radio. Moreover, in this application, contrary to common practice, there were no diagrams and drawings of the device. They appeared only in March 1897 of the year, and strikingly resembled the scheme of the receiver Popov. That is, it is possible that it was Marconi who repeated the invention of the Russian scientist.

Guglielmo Marconi was barely 22 at that time, and he had no technical background. By his own admission (in the Nobel lecture of 1909 of the year), he “regularly never studied physics and electrical engineering. At home in Italy, near Bologna, I began to conduct research and experiments on the wireless transmission of telegraph signs and symbols through Hertz waves only at the beginning of 1895 of the year. ” Both Marconi and Popov considered their teacher of the German physicist G. Hertz, who discovered radio waves. Hertz came close to creating the radio, but this was prevented by his sudden death in January 1894, at the age of thirty-six. It is therefore not surprising that scientists in various countries made the inevitable discovery almost simultaneously and independently of each other. This happened more than once in the history of science.

True, the behavior of Marconi and his supporters calls this simultaneity into question. The application of the Italian researcher to the patent office was kept secret for a long time. It was alleged that it was destroyed, and only in 2004, the Marconi corporation made it public. This document, compiled in very vague terms, is called “Improvements in equipment for the transmission of electrical impulses and signals.” Thus, Marconi is already posing himself - after all, only something that already exists can be improved. Of course, there is a possibility that the Italian meant not the discoveries of Popov, but of other outstanding scientists - Oliver Lodge and Nikola Tesla. Thus, Lodge publicly demonstrated radio transmission in the summer of 1894, but did not take care of the practical application of his invention. The values ​​of the radio did not realize and Tesla, although later he tried in every way to prove his priority. He discovered the main principles of radio communication back in 1891 year.

But it was Popov who created the first known device for transmitting radio signals. All European scientists, including A. Rigi, Marconi’s supervisor at the University of Bologna, could see his drawing in the Vestnik RFHO. Just a week later, the young specialist arrived in the UK, where he appeared with the “secret” scheme straight into the office of the chief engineer of the postal and telegraph office William Price. The British quickly realized the possibilities of a new kind of communication. Pris helped Marconi get government money and gave him technically competent assistants who helped him assemble the first working transmitter. He was shown to the public in July 1896 of the year, that is, four months after the corresponding demonstration of Popov.

After obtaining the patent, Marconi’s invention was put on a commercial basis. In 1897, the Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company was founded. It became for many years the leading global radio communications corporation. The high profile of the company, like the first radio transmission across the Atlantic in 1901, led to widespread fame. Departments of the company appeared in all corners of the world, and Marconi himself became a millionaire. Marconi was mostly not a scientist, but a businessman. It was business acumen, not a scientific genius, that allowed him to defeat the competition. This was one of the sad foreboding of the new century - the era of the omnipotence of public relations, generated by big money.

Popov was much harder. The Russian authorities did not understand the significance of his invention. When asked by a scientist to allocate money for experiments, the naval minister replied: “I don’t allow money to be let in such a chimera.” True, quite soon the naval authorities realized the need for radio and began to allocate money to the scientist, but very little. Every summer, Popov had to leave for the exhibition in Nizhny Novgorod, where he was in charge of a power station. This “part-time job” allowed keeping a large family, and buying equipment for experiments at their own expense. The Ministry of Navy failed to launch the production of radio transmitters, purchasing devices made according to the Popov scheme by the Frenchman E. Ducrete. But the authorities classified the work of a scientist, which prevented him from taking a patent for an invention.

True, the scientist himself was a modest man, indifferent to wealth, so he did not seek to defend his priority. And the culprit was not the notorious "Russian sloppiness." By all accounts, he was a very collected and punctual man, and modesty, reaching for self-deprecation, is also quite a characteristic feature of a Russian person. So, answering a question from a newspaper, who invented radio after all, he said: “The merit of discovery of the phenomena that served Marconi is Hertz and Branly, then comes a number of applications that have been started by many, including me. Marconi was the first to have the courage to stand on practical ground and in his experiments achieved great results by improving existing instruments. ” Marconi and his supporters willingly used the modesty of the Russian scientist to consolidate their success.

It must be said that during Popov’s life, his priority in the invention of radio was recognized by many foreign scientists. Only after death, the active advertising of the company “Marconi” did its job, forcing not only the broad circles of society, but also the scientific world to forget about the true inventor. One way or another, radio communication has conquered the whole world in just a few years and it has been used in various areas.

Alexander Stepanovich Popov died suddenly on December 31 1905 (January 13 1906) from a stroke. The name of Popov is inscribed in gold letters in the history of Russian and world science. He was a true patriot of his country: “I am a Russian person, and I have the right to give all my knowledge, all my work, all my achievements only to my homeland. And if not contemporaries, then maybe our descendants will understand ... how happy I am that it is not abroad, but a new means of communication has been opened in Russia. ”
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  1. venaya
    venaya 13 January 2016 06: 43
    Alexander Stepanovitch Popov was engaged not only in the invention of "radio" (a lightning detector, according to him), but as a naval officer for the first time in the world he was able to invent a "radar", having discovered the loss of radio communication when a large warship passed through the radio communication line. As for Marconi, he was smart enough to patent his invention in England, at that time the financial metropolis, then you can not argue, they will still prove theirs.
    1. xerx
      xerx 19 December 2017 15: 41
      Not "they" will prove theirs, but you choose the option that you like best, ignoring the facts. I also did this when I was little.
      By the way, the English patent does not apply to Russia, and Popov did not interfere. Many worked on the development of the radio, and Popov is just one of them. You know absolutely nothing about the work of others, so you mistakenly believe that everyone else is a crook.
  2. qwert
    qwert 13 January 2016 06: 54
    Popov has some kind of non-Russian face.
    1. inkass_98
      inkass_98 13 January 2016 07: 57
      "If anyone climbed up to me, so and so - a Tatar" (C) laughing .
      Scrape any Russian — you will find a different nationality, such a country.
    2. washi
      washi 13 January 2016 10: 17
      Quote: qwert
      Popov has some kind of non-Russian face.

      Russian is not a nationality but a state of mind
      Genetic studies show that it is the Russians who are the founders of all whites
      But who said that all white Russians?
    3. Heimdall49
      Heimdall49 13 January 2016 14: 52
      Popov has some kind of non-Russian face.

      Turyinsky Rudniki village (now Krasnoturinsk, Sverdlovsk region)

      Local specificity seems to overlap - Voguls or Khanty in the family. It's okay - everything is native)
  3. Dragon-y
    Dragon-y 13 January 2016 07: 04
    There is a good 1947 film. "Alexander Popov", his experiments and participation in the battleship rescue operation are excellently shown.
    1. Alex
      Alex 13 January 2016 18: 47
      Quote: Dragon-y
      There is a good 1947 film. "Alexander Popov", his experiments and participation in the battleship rescue operation are excellently shown.

      I confirm. I looked a long time in childhood, already breathtaking. Yes, only since then has he somehow disappeared from the screens.
  4. gla172
    gla172 13 January 2016 07: 26
    I still have Radio magazines from the 50s, one of which has the same image of Popov.
  5. parusnik
    parusnik 13 January 2016 07: 55
    Successful use of radio communication A.S. Popov in the Baltic Fleet was highly appreciated by the fleet management and ship commanders. To equip the fleet, many dozens of sets of AS equipment were required. Popova. The manufacture of the first tens of such sets was organized in Kronstadt according to the drawings and under the guidance of A.S. Popov in the workshops of lieutenant E.V. Kolbasyeva. In addition, in order to meet the growing needs of the fleet in such equipment, foreign companies were involved in its manufacture, to which the drawings of A.S. Popova. These are the firm E. Ducretet in France and the General Electricity Company in Germany.
  6. Loki_2
    Loki_2 13 January 2016 08: 11
    110 years ago, January 13 1916 year

    How lovely!
    The author has 2026 in the yard lol
  7. V.ic
    V.ic 13 January 2016 08: 18
    I have no doubts about the priority of A.S. Povov over Guillemot Marconi (by the wayrogue in short). Monument A.S.Popov observed in Yekaterinburg.
    1. xerx
      xerx 19 December 2017 15: 10
      Very vain you have no doubt. There is a contradiction in the evidence. It would be logical to understand the issue, and not choose the option that you like
  8. Belousov
    Belousov 13 January 2016 09: 30
    A great man who served wholeheartedly for the good of the motherland. Can you imagine such patriots now, for example, in our government, especially in its liberal part?
    1. afdjhbn67
      afdjhbn67 13 January 2016 09: 31
      Quote: Belousov
      especially in its liberal part?

      But not the liberal part of it - who is this?
      1. V.ic
        V.ic 13 January 2016 10: 43
        Quote: afdjhbn67
        А not liberal part of it is who?

        Immediately complex values ​​are recalled: "real part" ... "imaginary part".
    2. washi
      washi 13 January 2016 10: 22
      Quote: Belousov
      A great man who served wholeheartedly for the good of the motherland. Can you imagine such patriots now, for example, in our government, especially in its liberal part?

      Patriots and the idiotic government has always been
      And there were always people who, instead of fighting the idiotic government, tried to benefit their homeland
      And With Popov from such
      And you?
  9. erased
    erased 13 January 2016 09: 42
    On May 7, the eternal will sound in all radio institutes-universities: "Popov is risen!" - "Truly Popov!"
    A great man gave us a gift that we will always use!
  10. Batia
    Batia 13 January 2016 09: 59
    Signalers sacredly honor the memory of Popov. May 7, we always congratulate each other. And October 22 is the Day of formation of the communications troops.
  11. Reptiloid
    Reptiloid 13 January 2016 10: 10
    Thank you very much for the article. In St. Petersburg there is a street named after Professor Popov, in the Petrograd district.
  12. stopkran
    stopkran 13 January 2016 12: 54
    An interesting detail, modern "official science" has not yet decided in what environment radio waves propagate. The radio broadcast seems to be as it is, but the broadcast itself is "outlawed"! ))

    Argumentum ad rem
    What is being presented at schools and universities under the name Periodic Table of Chemical Elements Mendeleev, - frank f and l sh and in to and. The last time, in an undistorted form, the real periodic table was published in 1906 in St. Petersburg (textbook of the Basics of Chemistry, VIII edition). And only after 96 years of oblivion, did the genuine periodic table rise from the ashes for the first time thanks to the publication of this dissertation in the journal of the Russian Physical Society.

    Falsification of the periodic table and much more (A. Zolotarev)

    At Mendeleev:
    1. hydrogen is not the first element, but the third.
    2. the table has a 0-row and a 0-group.
    3. inert gases in group 0, not in group 8.

    The essence of falsification is to hide the presence of ether., Although radio waves propagate only on the air. (radio), which turns out not!
    1. a.hamster55
      a.hamster55 13 January 2016 13: 23
      And here is the most correct table lol
      1. stopkran
        stopkran 14 January 2016 09: 03
        And here is the real periodic table:
    2. The comment was deleted.
    3. Alex
      Alex 13 January 2016 18: 57
      Dear, what was your chemistry? DI Mendeleev corrected his table in each new edition of "Fundamentals of Chemistry", and not only in view of the appearance of new elements, but also experimented with the form, several times passing from long-period to short-period and back. And the very first, draft, version was generally triangular with a vertical arrangement of periods.

      Ether does not exist, and expressions such as "radio air", "open air", etc. have remained as a tribute to tradition. Electromagnetic waves are transverse and, unlike longitudinal ones, do not need any medium for propagation.

      The fact that D.I. Mendeleev considered possible the existence of elements with a weight less than that of hydrogen is a completely logical assumption. Equally, the existence of ether at that time was considered quite possible. So it would leave logical space for such elements at the beginning of the table, just as he did in the middle of the table. In general, great people have great mistakes. It's just that they are never embarrassed to recognize them and know how to refuse them in time.
      1. stopkran
        stopkran 13 January 2016 22: 13
        Dear, how you are doing everything, oh .. There is every reason to assume that you are a victim of the USE.)) Back in the 19th century, Michelson using an interferometer measured the speed of the ether wind, if what.

        And this is for you to read for general development: Academician V.A. Atsyukovsky "General ether dynamics"
        and watch
        Daineko V.I. (. (Lomonosov Moscow State University. Chemical Faculty 2000) .. - Lectures on the basics of ether dynamics. Part 1
        1. Alex
          Alex 13 January 2016 23: 26
          Quote: stopkran
          Dear, how you are running, oh .. There is every reason to assume that you are a victim of the exam.))
          Ser, before you run into people, at least read your opponent’s profile or something. Then it will become clear that when I received a diploma from a graduate of the Chemistry Department of KSU (with honors), they did not even hear about the exam, central heating and heat exchanger. So from the victim of the exam and hear.

          Back in the 19 century, Michelson using an interferometer measured the speed of the ether wind, if what.
          If so, then just Michelson’s experiments showed that there is no ether at all. These experiments began even with the experiments of J. Maxwell, but he himself discovered an error in them. Michelson decided to repeat this experiment, but the result was also erroneous. He later repeated the experiment, but also to no avail.
          The idea of ​​this experiment periodically surfaced in world physical science, but, despite the continuous improvement of methods and equipment, the desired effect was not achieved. Already in the twentieth century, Miller and Kennedy tried to register the existence of ether, but to no avail. The last (third time) was Michelson again, but again no ether was found. This experiment is periodically repeated, but no one hopes for the result: the accuracy of the Columbia University installation (2011) allows us to fix the presence of ether when the interference fringes are shifted to units 10 ^ (- 16). In general, you cannot catch a non-existent cat, no matter what color it is and what kind of lighting in the room is not present.

          And this is for you to read for general development:
          What should I read, both for general and special development (the topic of my dissertation is quantum chemistry) - sorry, it’s not for you to tell me. Moreover, the inventions of a person who set himself the goal of overthrowing the theory of relativity. As well as the works of his followers.
          1. stopkran
            stopkran 14 January 2016 09: 01
            I, as a Nobel laureate in the field of physics, have to inform you that
            judging by your abstract verbiage, once again I am convinced of the truth of the statement that the formation of the mind does not. (For reference: the mind is the ability for independent critical thinking in accordance with the laws of logic.) By the way, quite recently, by historical standards, 300 years ago, such “scientists”, like you, “authoritatively” claimed that the Earth is flat.

            The largest experimenter of the first third of the twentieth century E. Rutherford called Einstein's theory nonsense. The genius of electrical engineering N. Tesla stated that only naive people can consider it a physical theory.

            Available, about the abstractions (delusions) of Einstein
            Space-time, continuum. Movie. Physics. Lecture. Victor Katyushchik

            PS: your militant stupidity is very funny, "ischo ish." )))
            1. Alex
              Alex 14 January 2016 10: 05
              I'm sorry the Nobel Committee.

              Further discussion lost all interest for me. Communicate further with representatives of alternative science.
            2. xerx
              xerx 19 December 2017 15: 30
              Quote: stopkran
              The largest experimenter of the first third of the twentieth century E. Rutherford called Einstein's theory nonsense

              Rutherford Quote: The theory of relativity by Einstein, quite apart from any question of its validity, cannot but be considered as a magnificent work of art. Translation: Einstein's theory of relativity, regardless of its fidelity, cannot but be considered a magical work of art.
  13. a.hamster55
    a.hamster55 13 January 2016 13: 21
    When, under pressure from the tsarist autocracy, A.S. Popov had to invent the radio, he had no idea that we would be so tormented with him laughing Tolley is a matter of pigeons ... and always fresh meat!
  14. semirek
    semirek 13 January 2016 17: 44
    What can I add, Russia was not backward at that time, giving us A.Popov, Mendeleev, Sikorsky and a hundred of the most talented engineers, scientists, inventors, whose inventions we should be proud of.
    It is noteworthy that the invention of Popov, stepped into life, from saving people.
    1. Geser
      Geser 13 January 2016 19: 09
      You are right, Russia really gave the world a lot of talented scientists and great inventions, and rightfully it should not only be considered a progressive country, but also lead world progress. Only the main reason why Russia did not become so is the politics of the Romanov dynasty. This policy was aimed at imitating the West, they say if in the West they didn’t create something like that, then where is the bast of Russia! For example, the world's first parachute was created in Russia by the inventor Kotelnikov. The tsarist government did not appreciate the importance of such an invention, but it was appreciated in the West. Subsequently, the tsarist government paid more than one thousand gold for owning a patent for a parachute. And the history of Popov’s invention is only one of many missed inventions and opportunities associated with them.
      1. semirek
        semirek 13 January 2016 19: 26
        In the Soviet era, there were no Romanovs, but for some reason thousands of inventions by Soviet engineers, even being patented, could not get a ticket to life, but for some reason many of these inventions surfaced in the West. What’s the paradox?
        1. Geser
          Geser 14 January 2016 19: 26
          There is no paradox. Just after Stalin, our elite began to bow to the West like the Romanovs, and therefore many inventions and projects were deliberately put on the cloth, playing along with the West.
          1. xerx
            xerx 19 December 2017 15: 07
            Geser , in the country for many years a huge number of decisions have been made. Probably several tens of thousands. Can you give at least one documented example when something was put under the cloth to please the West?
            You base your opinion on something, or not?
      2. xerx
        xerx 19 December 2017 15: 18
        Geser, only a person very far from history, can claim that Kotelnikov invented the parachute. I advise you to get acquainted with the list of people who used the parachute long before it. For example, Louis-Sebastian Lenormand (1783 leap). Even the knapsack parachute, which he patented, was invented a few years before by a German. The German simply did not patent it. I am already silent that Leonard our da Vinci has a parachute in his portfolio of inventions.
  15. Oleg_G
    Oleg_G 13 January 2016 19: 58
    110 years ago, on January 13, 1916, the great Russian scientist, inventor of radio Alexander Stepanovich Popov, died.

    110 years ago?
    Alexander Stepanovich Popov suddenly died on December 31, 1905 (January 13, 1906) from a stroke.

    Dear author! You already decide on the dates then.
  16. tolancop
    tolancop 13 January 2016 23: 41
    Not quite in the subject, but the topic of radio is directly related.
    In the city of Pereslavl-Zalessky several years ago, a Radio Museum was opened by one enthusiast. Recommend. If you manage to get to the museum (there were reports that the museum is often closed) you will get a lot of pleasure. The exhibits are mainly tube receivers, most of them are workers. Their sound and crackle - SOMETHING !!! Anyone who remembers the radio tubes and scales of old receivers glowing in the darkness of a dark room will appreciate it.
  17. xerx
    xerx 19 December 2017 15: 00
    The existence of radio waves was justified by the Scot Maxwell in 1864. The German Hertz conducted the first radio wave transmission and reception in 1888. The French Branly made a coherer in 1890. The device description already mentions a radio telegraph relay that can be controlled using this device. Coherer Branly was perfected by the British Lodge in 1894, who arranged a communication session at 40m in 1894. The Lodge patented the idea, Marconi bought a patent. Popov in 1895 added a call to the Branly coherer, a battery, a recorder, and called this device a lightning recorder. LIGHTNING, Carl. Only after reports of the development created by Marconi, did Popov hastily rename his lightning recorder into a wireless telegraph. Marconi took the very same Branly coherer with Lodge improvements, improved it, and created the world's first signal transmission and reception system, with access to a telegraph relay. He graduated in 1896. He made the lightning recorder in 1894. In December 1894, he already created a fully operational communication system that transmits a signal through a room. Marconi ran into his 700m range limit in 1895, the same year that Popov built his own receiver. Having successfully increased the distance of stable communication, Marconi began to try to sell it, first in his homeland - unsuccessfully, then in the UK. It was the Italian ambassador to the UK who advised against publishing anything until a patent was received. Marconi simply silently came, developed, manufactured, without magnificent publications and reports. To do this, since 1892 he attended lectures at the university and used its laboratory, with the permission of his neighbor, physics professor Augusto Riga, who developed the ideas of Hertz.
    Documented dates: Popov in 1897 in a report at the Electrotechnical Institute said: “Here is a device for telegraphing. We were unable to send a coherent telegram because we did not have practice, all the details of the devices still need to be developed ”, which, in general, proves the absence of a working model of Popov’s transceiver for the second half of 1897. Marconi has a demo for the British government was in July 1986