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Dates That Matter

October 20, 1906

Lee de Forest demonstrates a new version of the radio tube.

 Why does it matter?

De Forest's improvements to the radio tube allowed the signal to be amplified better than any previous tube. De Forest's was nicknamed the "Father of Radio." He earned over 300 patents, and his Audion tube became an essential component of not only commercial radio, but the telephone, television, radar, and computer. Can you imagine a world without any of these technologies? De Forest also ran one of the earliest radio broadcasting companies, and as a fan of opera, first broadcast the Metropolitan Opera's life performance with Enrico Caruso.

For more information...

A Science Odyssey: People and Discoveries
Brief biography of Lee de Forest. There is a link to a Technology exercise which is a shockwave plug in that shows the emergence of various household appliances over time.

A Science Odyssey: You Try It: Radio Transmission
A cool shockwave demo of how radio waves change pitch and are transmitted.

Lee de Forest
Biographical information on Lee de Forest. Click on The Audion for more on the radio tube he invented.