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代写英国硕士论文-HAROLD EDGERTON IN WORLD WAR II( The Structure of E(9)

时间:2012-05-23 14:02来源:未知 编辑:留学生作业 点击:
by this system was more than adequate for the application, Edgerton found as he did additional work on the system that the primary concern in this application was not the maximization of flash intensi

by this system was more than adequate for the application, Edgerton found as he did
additional work on the system that the primary concern in this application was not the
maximization of flash intensity, as it was in the aerial strobe project. Instead, he found that the
main objective was to maximize the longevity of the equipment and minimize the power
consumption of the lamp, as the beacon would need to continually flash for extended periods.
As such, use of the aerial flash was not ideal for this application, as the system discharged large
amounts of energy in each flash, which both consumed large amounts of power and caused the
equipment used to deteriorate quickly.
Edgerton next proposed a system whereby a
number of smaller strobe lamps would be
arranged in a circle, pointed outwards, and
triggered in series, one after another. Such a
system had the effect of closely approximating
the coverage of the single large, powerconsuming
aerial flash lamp while consuming
only a fraction of the power. Figure 34 shows
one of Edgerton抯 initial drawings of such a
system. As this system proved most efficient
and durable, the Army eventually commissioned
Edgerton to produce beacons in this style, using
three smaller lamps. Beacons of this type are
still in use in airports today. The aircraft beacon
is one of the first examples of the use of strobe
75 Harold Edgerton Papers, Box 1 Folder 8.
76 Harold Edgerton Papers, Box 52 Notebook 13.
Figure 34: Edgerton抯 Innovative Design for Aircraft
Landing Beacons76
technology in non-photographic, non-imaging applications. Thus, Edgerton抯 involvement in the
war with the aerial flash afforded him opportunities to apply his technology in ways that he did
not envision before the war.
At the end of the war period, the Secretary of War requested Edgerton to investigate further
applications of his technology, indicating that the armed forces were pleased with Edgerton's
work. He successfully designed and deployed six models of electronic flash units for aerial
photography however, his technical ability was not the only factor in his success in this project.
His working style which can be observed in his activities before World War II, specifically the
ways in which he conducted his research and presented his work to others, contributed to his
Edgerton was very diligent in the way he put
his ideas on paper and into graphical
representation. Like his lab notebooks in the
pre-war era, Edgerton consistently records
information about the experiments that he
carries out for the Air Force. This is needed to
both determine his next steps and facilitate his
regular reports to the army officers. Many of
Edgerton抯 documents from the war times
found in the MIT Archives were in forms of
correspondence between Edgerton and people
in the field or people back at MIT who helped
him with his work. Figure 35 shows part of a
letter Edgerton wrote to Grier during test
flights at Wright Field in summer of 1942.
The letter relates the events that happened
during the tests as well as technical
information. Similar to his pre-war lab books
where he jotted down ideas as they came to
him, he uses these correspondences to scribble
rough circuits or system diagrams. In this
particular example, he sends Grier a piece to
work on before his arrival at MIT to speed up
the project.
One significant change in the way Edgerton carried out his research was the setting where he did
his experiments. Prior to war, he was dealing with small-scale projects where either, he would
prepare up his equipment and setting or he would be operating a mobile stroboscope unit into
another closed setting like a manufacturing plant, or a machine room. Figure 36 shows an
77 Harold Edgerton Papers, Box 78 Folder 1.
Figure 35: Letter to Herb Grier77
example of a lab set up where Edgerton could control all the parameters that could influence the
effectiveness of his equipment. In such a situation, the experiment can be repeated many times
until the desired results are obtained. When compared to the air force bases where he did his
work, this is a big change. He was in an environment where he did not have access to resources
of his lab. Goddard recalled when Edgerton arrived in Chalgrove, Britain with some
reconnaissance pilots:
He was a great improviser so instead of
beefing to the Commanding Officer, he
immediately went to the base dump and
scoured a number of large wooden airplane
and glider crates. In a few days, he and his
men were sitting in a comfortably equipped
office containing stoves, desks, chairs, filing
cases, and a nanny! This was typical of the
Doctor for he was a man of action and always
got the job done with distinction.
The men at Chalgrove marveled at his
unbounding energy as they saw him in
coveralls clinging in and out of airplanes and
dashing to his machine shop and about the
field on personnel training schedules.79
His resourcefulness often also allowed him to
make fast progress despite difficulties. When a
shipment of flash tubes arrived broken, he went to Siemens Company in England and asked them
to manufacture some xenon bulbs. As xenon was not readily available in the UK, Siemens
turned him down. Edgerton managed to obtain 3 liters of xenon and returned to the company
two days later, much to the surprise of Siemens?president.80 Yet, this was a different operating
mode than he had at MIT, where he could walk down the hall to the spare parts room and browse
and get whatever he needed.
Another challenge of working in the field was testing. Experimentation of his equipment
required the installation in a plane, flying the plane and testing the quality. This process took a
long time, and could only be repeated at night. Edgerton was present and onboard inmost of
these trial flights. Each flight test would require installing the equipment in the plane, take-off,
taking of the pictures and recording of the parameters, landing and deinstallation. It was a time
consuming and expensive process unlike any in lab tests. Besides, reflecting how hard it is to
conduct tests and have them run smoothly each time, Edgerton抯 letters have a tone of
accomplishment in each. Each letter shows a modification or an improvement that he designs to
better his technology. This shows how passionate and excited he was about his work and
involvement with the war effort. John Burchard in his accounts of MIT in WWII says:
78 Harold Edgerton, 揃ullet Photography,?High Speed Photography and Photonics Newsletter, Fall 1981, p.8.
Harold Edgerton Papers, Box 109 Folder 48.
79 Goddard,329-30
80 "Edgerton, Killian, Duncan 3 April 1978" [Audio tape] Harold Edgerton Papers, Box 143.
Figure 36: Lab Set up for Gun Shots78
The important thing to remember is that these men were ready - that they did not wave
magic wands - and that the reason that they were ready was that as free men in a free
institution they had been permitted to proceed on projects which caught their imagination
without any insistence on the part of their superiors that they be able to forecast a payoff.
Edgerton抯 excitement about his work is also observed through the amount of thinking he puts
into his products and their perception by others.
Working on photography and motion pictures before the war, Edgerton had a vehicle for
demonstrating his work to others. His audience in the pre-war years included people from
academia, clients from industry and manufacturing companies who built under Edgerton抯
patents. However, none of these demonstrations were at as great a scale as those he had during
the war.
Although Edgerton had Goddard抯
support, he had to demonstrate his
technology to the decision makers and
potential users of the equipment. The
first demonstrations came as he
developed the unit and flew it over MIT
in 1941. Figure 37 shows a photograph
of the Institute.
Edgerton also arranged a dramatic public
demonstration of his technology for
British military personnel using
Stonehenge as his subject. One can also
see this type of heterogeneous
engineering demonstrated in Thomas
Edison at his Menlo Park Laboratory.
Thomas Edison used his Menlo Park
demonstration to unveil his electric
lighting system to the public and
generate enthusiasm. 83 Similarly, Edgerton picked a prominent British landmark to influence the
officers to use and support the electronic flash. Edgerton recalled in an interview:
Six more senior officers and me were the decision makers. I was the only defender of the
xenon flash?(I wanted to show them what it could do. No pilot wanted to fly for me.)
They thought they did not have a target. At conclusion, we suggested that let抯 get a
target. And they got excited. I said the Stonehenge. Worked well!84
81 Burchard, 204.
82 Harold Edgerton Papers, Box 77 Folder 2.
83 Israel, p. 187.
84 "Edgerton, Killian, Duncan 3 April 1978"
Figure 37: MIT from above 82
This demonstration was successful in building enthusiasm and support for his electronic flash
equipment. However, Edgerton抯 job was not done after convincing the decision makers to

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