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December 6, 2015

Before Radar, Hearing Was Believing: A Collection of 15 Weird Vintage Sound Locators From the Wars

From the first world war until the 30's air acoustics played an important role in the air defence. Air vehicles carrying a weapon could not be located from the ground e.g. at night time or under cloudy conditions. As radar was still to be discovered, vision had to be supplemented by hearing using the sound of the engines. Here are some of the most insane moments in the history of sound-location technology.

1. A junior officer and NCO from an unidentified Feldartillerie regiment wearing a portable sound locating apparatus, c. 1917

2. A two-horn system at Bolling Field, USA, near the Army War College at Fort McNair (in the background), 1921

3. An early Goerz listening equipment with receiving shells

4. Horn-like sound locators of the US Army

5. The Doppelt Richtungshörer, produced by the German Askania

6. A Barbier, Bénard et Turenne device from France

7.A Dutch device, built from 1934 for the Engineers Regiment and the Netherlands Army in the East Indies

8. Miniaturized listening devices for the improved mobility, concepts from The Netherlands, 1930s

9. Gigantic trumpet-like Japanese electric ears for detecting enemy planes, 1936

10. "Big Ears" Listen for Airplanes, 1938

11. A Japanese detector from the late 1930s

12. A four-horn acoustic locator in England: 1930s

13. The German Ringtrichterrichtungshoerer (or RRH) acoustic locator, mainly used in World War II antiaircraft searchlight batteries for initial aiming of the searchlights at night targets.

14. The Shout-O-Phone from 1940

15. Soviet soldiers are listening to the sky with their ZT-4 locator, 1942

(via io9)


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