The idea comes from the experimentation with wireless telegraphy in
the 1830’s. People experimented in the water, ground and on
electrical tracks. However, it was said the first intentional
electromagnetic wave was created in the 1880’s by David Edward
Hughes. His experiment was based on James Clerk Maxwell who
mathematically proved the existence of waves moving through free
space. However, the experiment was considered induction at the
time. In 1888, Heinrich Hertz was able to prove the theory of
electromagnetism created by Maxwell. After the discovery of
‘Hertzian waves’ many scientists attempted to create a wireless
connection for communication purposes. Maxwell’s theory showed
that both light and these waves were on a different level of
spectrum. Scientists like John Perry, Frederick Trouton and
Alexander Trotter assumed they would be analogous to optical
signalling. Nickola Tesla considered it useless because light did not
carry any transitions through communication.
In 1892, William Crookes wrote on the
possibilities of communication through Hertzian
waves and in response a year later, Tesla
proposed a system to transmit waves using the
earth as a medium. Other scientists such as
Oliver Lodge and Alexander Popov were also
involved in the development of airborne
electromagnetic wave theorem but worked
independently. In 1894, Guglielmo Marconi, an
Italian inventor, built the first wireless
telegraphy system based on Hertzian waves.
He demonstrated the use through military
communication and started a company for radio
service and equipment.
Between 1886 and 1888, Heinrich Rudolf Hertz published
his experimental results on electromagnetic wave
transition following Maxwell’s theory of airborne waves. A
lot of scientists – William Crookes, John Perry, observed
the Hertzian waves and based their developments on
potential communication and navigation aid. Nikola Tesla
based the idea behind Hertzian waves to develop his
ideas in wireless lighting and power distribution. Tesla
decided that Heinrich’s observations were false and went
on to experiment with what he thought was the main
conductor, earth. Tesla proposes wireless technology can
also incorporate the system of telecommunication.
In 1894, Lodge and Muirhead demonstrated signalling
through Hertzian waves at Oxford University. The signal
was sent to the building neighbouring and was received
by apparatus in the lecture.
Building on the demonstration at Oxford,
physicist Jagadish Chandra Bose ignited
gunpowder and rang a bell from a distance
using millimetre range microwaves in 1894.
He wrote that the visible light can pass
through brick and building so wireless
communication can be possible without
interception. His observations were
communicated in 1895, a second paper the
In 1895, Alexander Popov followed Heinrich’s
research and built his first radio receiver.
Further refined a lightning detector, it was
printed in the Journal of Russian physical
and chemical society the same year.
Began working on the telegraphy system based on Hertzian waves in 1894.
He noticed no one else was pursuing these experiments. He dedicated a lot
of his work to developing portable transmitted and those that could be
received over a long distance. Turning an experiment to a useful system of
communications. After much development, Marconi could only produce signals
by 1895 that span a one half mile radius – Oliver Lodge predicted this was
the maximum distance possible. Marconi raised his antenna and grounded his
receiver and transmitter, improvements meant it could reach 2 miles over hills.
His apparatus was proved to be the first complete commercially successful
transition system. It was credited to save 700 people aboard the titanic.
In 1896, he was awarded British patent for his Hertzian wave work. In 1897,
he established his first station on the Isle of Wight and his first factory in
Chelmsford, 1898. Shortly after, he had all the rights to radio. He won the
physics Nobel prize in 1909. His commercialised radio became a global
business. However, some of his patented refinements would be turned in
In 1900, Roberto Landell de Moura transmitted the
first human voice wirelessly. He conducted his first
public experiment in June in front of Journalists
and the General consul of Britain. The transition
was approximately 5 miles(8km.) A year after he
received a patent from the Brazilian Government.
He then left Brazil and went to America with his
new product which he knew now had value.
Patents were given in 1904, the precursor to the
In 1906, 24th December, Reginald Fessenden used
a rotary-spark transmitter for the first radio program
broadcast. It read a passage from the bible and a
playing of ‘O Holy Night.’ This was the first
transmission of what is now known as amplitude
The first radio came in the early 1920’s in the United Kingdom.
The BBC began this station, the first broadcast in 1922. More
broadcasts travelled through the country right through the 1920’s.
This channel allowed no adverts.
The company were the only ones allowed a station, they set the
standard in radio and had strict rules on what was allowed to be
The first station was very much based around old, classical music
for a younger audience, a lot of talking, discussions and news.
The station did not appeal to the younger audience, although it was
widely listened to because no other entertainment existed at the
time. It was an exciting new technological jump, the first introduced.
The potential it held was enticing, to listen to someone else in a
different place speak to you, inform you of current affairs.
The term ‘pirate radio station’ came from the stations which were set up on boats
in the middle of the ocean. They were, technically legal, which is why it was on
a boat. The law was that there was not allowed to be any other stations in
England. The creators went a certain distance away so that they could bypass
‘Pirate radio generally describes the unlicensed broadcast of FM radio, AM radio,
or short wave signals over a wide range.’
In some cases radio stations are deemed legal where the signal is transmitted,
but illegal where the signals are received—especially when the signals cross a
These channels were a lot different to the usual BBC channels. They shared
contradictory information, opened up interesting, political discussions that would
have not been allowed on the BBC. They also appealed to the younger audience.
Talking about fashion, playing new music, at the time rock and roll, pop. It was
the 1960’s and new, different music like Elvis Presley and The Beatles were
introduced to society.
The most popular were called ‘Radio Caroline’ and ‘Radio Luxemburg.’
The Government struggled to prevent these Pirate stations from broadcasting.