Today a good friend of mine, Justin KE8COY, posted a link referencing a broadcast piece on Natural Radio – a reference to the radio signals produced naturally by the earth. The piece notes how it was Thomas Watson, co-inventor of the telephone, who first heard the earth’s radio signals coming over a telephone test line strung up over the roofs of houses in Boston.
The piece is fascinating, and opens up yet another aspect of radio I (and Justin) find fascinating. And yes I know I am using “fascinating” repeatedly to describe this aspect of the hobby, but it truly is such to me. To think radio signals have been in the air, in space, and even under the earth since only microseconds after the Big Bang, well, it makes me feel even more connected to Creation than before.
I can relate to what Justin said in part of his post:
The first is an audio piece from a broadcast station about how “radio was
heard before it was invented”. This was interesting to me as I’ve enjoyed
listening to the various VLF receivers you can find on the web, and the
whole idea of “natural radio” was one of the things that inspired me to go
after my ticket in the first place. I’d still like to build a VLF receiver.
One among many of a very long list of possible projects. In any case this
piece isn’t that long. As a bonus composer Pauline Oliveros makes an
appearance in this recording.
I too have an interest in building a VLF receiver, as well as a radio dedicated to hearing RF from space, such as that which is produced by Jupiter. Like all radio signals, I am intrigued by the notion of radio waves passing through the air just waiting to be captured – waiting to fulfill their destiny, so to speak.
To me it is a bit like life in the ocean – there has been life teeming in the ocean depths which we are only now beginning to appreciate through technological advances. Yet the ocean life has been there since the beginning of life on this planet, so I can only assume these life forms were put here as much for the pleasure of God as for the (eventual) pleasure of mankind. Perhaps the same is true for the radio waves present and sounding since the beginning of time itself?
Well, enough philosophizing for this round, but I do encourage you to listen to this short audio broadcast – I think you will find it interesting, to say the least. Thanks again Justin for bringing it to my attention – you always find such interesting things! 73, Robert AK3Q