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icals, and apparatus of all kinds for vanquishing the enemy and the saving of our own men than had been devised by the enemy during many years of preparation planned on the basis of a total disregard of treaties and the conventions of war.
Four years is too short a time for much scientific invention to blossom to useful maturity, even under the forced exigencies of war and government control. It must be remembered that in the past the great majority of new discoveries and inventions of merit have taken many yearssometimes generations-to bring them into general use. It must also be mentioned that in some instances discoveries and inventions are attributable to the general advance in science and the arts which has brought within the region of practical politics an attack on some particular problem. So the work of the men of science during the war has perforce been directed more to the application of known principles, trade knowledge and properties of matter to the waging of war than to the making of new and laborious discoveries; though, in effecting such applications, inventions of a high order have been achieved some of which promise to be of great usefulness in time of peace.
The advance of science and the arts in the last century had, however, wrought a great change in the implements of war. The steam-engine, the internal-combustion engine, electricity, and the advances in metallurgy and chemistry had led to the building up of immense industries which, when diverted from their normal uses, have produced unprecedented quantities of war material for the purposes of the enormous armies, and also for the greatest navy which the world has ever seen.
The destructive energy in the field and afloat has multiplied many hundredfold since the time of the Napoleonic wars;
both before and during the war the size of guns and the efficiency of explosives and shell increased immensely, and many new implements of destruction were added. Modern science and engineering enabled armies unprecedented in size, efficiency and equipment to be drawn from all parts of the world and to be concentrated rapidly in the fighting line.
To build up the stupendous fighting organization, ships have been taken from their normal trade routes, locomotives and material from the home railways, the normal manufactures of the country have been largely diverted to munitions of war; the home railways, tramways, roads, buildings and constructions, and material of all kinds have been allowed to depreciate. The amount of depreciation in roads and railways alone has been estimated at £400,000,000 per annum at present prices. Upon the community at home a very great and abnormal strain has been thrown, notwithstanding the increased output per head of the workers derived from modern methods and improved machinery. In short, we have seen for the first time in history nearly the whole populations of the principal contending nations enlisted in intense personal and collective effort in the contest, resulting in unprecedented loss of life and destruction of capital.
A few figures will assist us to realize the great difference between this war and all preceding wars. At Waterloo, in 1815, 9,044 artillery rounds were fired, having a total weight of 37.3 tons, while on one day during the last offensive in France, on the British front alone, 943,837 artillery rounds were fired, weighing 18,080 tonsmore than 100 times the number of rounds, and nearly 540 times the weight of projectiles. Again, in the whole of the South African War 273,000 artillery rounds were fired, weighing approximately
2,800 tons; while during the whole war in France, on the British front alone, more than 170,000,000 artillery rounds were fired, weighing nearly 3,500,000 tons-622 times the number of rounds, and about 1,250 times the weight of projectiles.
However great these figures in connection with modern land artillery may be, they become almost insignificant when compared with those in respect of a modern naval battle squadron. The Queen Elizabeth when firing all her guns discharges 18 tons of metal and develops 1,870,000 foot-tons of energy. She is capable of repeating this discharge once every minute, and when doing so develops by her guns an average of 127,000 effective h.p., or more than one and one half times the power of her propelling machinery; and this energy is five times greater than the maximum average energy developed on the western front by British guns. Furthermore, if all her guns were fired simultaneously, they would for the instant be developing energy at the rate of 13,132,000 h.p. From these figures we can form some conception of the vast destructive energy developed in a modern naval battle.
With regard to the many important engineering developments made during the war, several papers by authorities are announced in the syllabus of papers constituting the sectional proceedings of this year's meeting. Among them are "Tanks," by Sir Eustace d'Eyncourt; "Scientific Progress of Aviation during the War," by L. Bairstow; "Airships," by Lieutenant-Colonel Cave-Brown-Cave; "Directional Wireless, with Special Reference to Aircraft," by Captain Robinson; "Wireless in Aircraft," by Major Erskine Murray; "Wireless Telegraphy during the First Three Years of the War," by Major Vincent Smith; "Submarine Mining," by Commander Gwynne; "Emergency Bridge
Construction," by Professor Ingles; and "The Paravane," by Commander Burney. Accordingly, it is quite unnecessary here to particularize further except in the few following instances:
Sound-ranging and Listening Devices.Probably the most interesting development during the war has been the extensive application of sound-listening devices for detecting and localizing the enemy. The Indian hunter puts his ear to the ground to listen for the sound of the footsteps of his enemy. So in modern warfare science has placed in the hands of the sailor and soldier elaborate instruments to aid the ear in the detection of noises transmitted through earth, water, air or ether, and also in some cases to record these sounds graphically or photographically, so that their character and the time of their occurrence may be tabulated.
The sound-ranging apparatus developed by Professor Bragg and his son, by which the position of an enemy gun can be determined from electrically recorded times at which the sound-wave from the gun passes over a number of receiving stations, has enabled our artillery to concentrate their fire on the enemy's guns, and often to destroy them.
The French began experimenting in September, 1914, with methods of locating enemy guns by sound. The English section began work in October, 1915, adopting the French methods in the first instance.` By the end of 1916 the whole front was covered, and sound-ranging began to play an important part in the location of enemy batteries. During 1917 locations by soundranging reached about 30,000 for the whole army, this number being greater than that given by any other means of location. A single good set of observations could be relied upon to give the position of an enemy gun to about 50 yards at 7,000
yards' range. It could also be carried on during considerable artillery activity.
The apparatus for localizing noises transmitted through the ground has been much used for the detection of enemy mining and counter-mining operations. Acoustic tubes, microphones and amplifying valves have been employed to increase the volume of very faint noises.
For many years before the war the Bell Submarine Signalling Co., of which Sir William White was one of the early directors, used submerged microphones for detecting sound transmitted through the water, and a submerged bell for sending signals to distances up to one mile. With this apparatus passing ships could be heard at a distance of nearly a mile when the sea was calm and the listening vessel stationary.
Of all the physical disturbances emitted or produced by a moving submarine, those most easily detected, and at the greatest distance, are the pressure-waves set up in the water by vibrations produced by the vessel and her machinery. A great variety of instruments have been devised during the war for detecting these noises, depending on microphones and magnetophones of exceedingly high sensitivity. Among them may be particularly mentioned the hydrophones devised by Captain Ryan and Professor Bragg, being adaptations of the telephone transmitter to work in water instead of air. These instruments, when mounted so as to rotate, are directional, being insensitive to sound-waves the front of which is perpendicular to the plane of the diaphragm, and giving the loudest sound when the diaphragm is parallel to the wave-front.
Another preferable method for determining direction is to use two hydrophones coupled to two receivers, one held to each This is called the biaural method,
and enables the listener to recognize the direction from which the sound emanates.
When the vessel is in motion or the sea is rough, the water noises from the dragging of the instrument through the water and from the waves striking the ship drown the noises from the enemy vessel, and under such conditions the instruments are useless. The assistance of eminent biologists was of invaluable help at this juncture. Experiments were made with sea-lions by Sir Richard Paget, who found that they have directional hearing under water up to speeds of six knots. Also Professor Keith explained the construction of the hearing organs of the whale, the ear proper being a capillary tube, too small to be capable of performing any useful function in transmitting sound to the relatively large aural organs, which are deep set in the head. The whale therefore hears by means of the sound-waves transmitted through the substance of the head. It was further seen that the organs of hearing of the whale to some degree resembled the hydrophone.
The course now became clear. Hollow towing bodies in the form of fish or porpoises were made of celluloid, varnished canvas, or very thin metal, and the hydrophone suitably fixed in the center of the head. The body is filled with water, and the cable towing the fish contains the insulated leads to the observer on board the vessel. When towed at some distance behind the chasing ship disturbing noises are small, and enemy noises can be heard up to speeds of fourteen knots, and at considerable distances. Thermionic amplifying valves have been extensively used, and have added much to the sensitiveness of the hydrophone in its many forms.
After the loss of the Titanic by collision with an iceberg, Lewis Richardson was granted two patents in 1912 for the de
tection of above-water objects by their echo in the air, and under-water objects by the echo transmitted through the water. The principles governing the production and the concentration of beams of sound are described in the specification, and he recommends frequencies ranging from 4,786 to 100,000 complete vibrations per second, and also suggests that the rate of approach or recession from the object may be determined from the difference in the pitch of the echo from the pitch of the blast sent out. Sir Hiram Maxim also suggested similar apparatus a little later. The echo method of detection was not, however, practically developed until French and English men of science, with whom was associated Professor Langevin, of the Collège de France, realizing its importance for submarine detection, brought the apparatus to a high degree of perfection and utility shortly before the armistice. Now with beams of high-frequency sound-waves it is possible to sweep the seas for the detection of any submerged object, such as icebergs, submarines, surface vessels, and rocks; they may also be used to make soundings. It enables a chasing ship to pick up and close in on a submarine situated more than a mile away.
The successful development of soundranging apparatus on land led to the suggestion by Professor Bragg that a modified form could be used to locate under-water explosions. It has been found that the shock of an explosion can be detected hundreds of miles from its source by means of a submerged hydrophone, and that the time of the arrival of the sound-wave can be recorded with great precision. At the end of the war the sound-ranging stations were being used for the detection of positions at sea required for strategical purposes. The same stations are now be
ing used extensively for the determination of such positions at sea as light-vessels, buoys which indicate channels, and obstructions such as sunken ships. By this means ships steaming in fog can be given their positions with accuracy for ranges. up to 500 miles.
Among the many other important technical systems and devices brought out during the war which will find useful application under peace conditions as aids to navigation I may mention directional wireless, by which ships and aircraft can be given their positions and directed, and on this subject we are to have a paper in Section G.
Leader-gear, first used by the Germans to direct their ships through their mine fields, and afterwards used by the Allies, consists of an insulated cable laid on the bottom of the sea, earthed at the farther end, through which an alternating current is passed. By means of delicate devices installed on a ship, she is able to follow the cable at any speed with as much precision as a railless electric 'bus can follow its trolley-wire. Cables up to fifty miles long have been used, and this device promises to be invaluable to ships navigating narrow and tortuous channels and entering or leaving harbors in a fog.
Aircraft. It may be justly said that the development in aircraft design and manufacture is one of the astonishing engineering feats of the war. In August, 1914, the British Air Services possessed a total of 272 machines, whereas in October, 1918, just prior to the armistice, the Royal Air Force possessed more than 22,000 effective machines. During the first twelve months of the war the average monthly delivery of aeroplanes to our Flying Service was 50, while during the last twelve months of the war the average deliveries were 2,700 per month. So far as aero-engines are
concerned, our position in 1914 was by no means satisfactory. We depended for a large proportion of our supplies on other countries. In the Aerial Derby of 1913, of the eleven machines that started, not one had a British engine. By the end of the war, however, British aero-engines had gained the foremost place in design and manufacture, and were well up to requirements as regards supply. The total horsepower produced in the last twelve months of the war approximated to eight millions of brake horse-power, a figure quite comparable with the total horse-power of the marine-engine output of the country.1
Much might be written on the progress in aircraft, but the subject will be treated at length in the sectional papers. In view of the recent trans-Atlantic flight, however, I feel that it may be opportune to make the following observations on the comparative utility of aeroplanes and airships for commercial purposes. In the case of the aeroplane, the weight per horsepower increases with the size, other things being equal. This increase, however, is met to some extent by a multiplicity of engines, though in the fuselage the increase remains.
On the other hand, with the airship the advantage increases with the size, as in all ships. The tractive effort per ton of displacement diminishes in inverse proportion to the dimensions, other things, including the speed, being the same. Thus an airship of 750 feet length and 60 tons displacement may require a tractive force of 5 per cent., or 3 tons, at 60 miles per hour; and one of 1,500 feet in length and 8 X 60480 tons displacement would require only 2 per cent. X 480=12 tons at the same speed, and would carry fuel for double the distance.
2 See Lord Weir's paper read at the Victory meeting of the Northeast Coast Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders, July, 1919.
With the same proportion of weight of hull to displacement, the larger airship would stand double the wind-pressure, and would weather storms of greater violence and hailstones of greater size. It would be more durable, the proportional upkeep would be less, and the proportional loss of gas considerably less. In other words, it would lose a less proportion of its buoyancy per day. It is a development in which success depends upon the project being well thought out and the job being thoroughly well done. The equipment of the airsheds with numerous electric haulage winches, and all other appliances to make egress and ingress to the sheds safe from danger and accident, must be ample and efficient.
The airship appears to have a great future for special commerce where time is a dominant factor and the demand is sufficient to justify a large airship. It has also a great field in the opening up of new countries where other means of communication are difficult. The only limitation to size will be the cost of the airship and its sheds, just as in steam vessels it is the cost of the vessels and the cost of deepening the harbors that limit the size of Atlantic liners.
Such developments generally take place slowly, otherwise failures occur-as in the case of the Great Eastern-and it may be many years before the airship is increased from the present maximum of 750 feet to 1,500 feet with success, but it will assuredly come. If, however, the development is subsidized or assisted by the government, incidental failures may be faced with equanimity and very rapid development accomplished. In peace-time the seaplane, aeroplane and airship will most certainly have their uses. But, except for special services of high utility, it is ques3 The literature on this subject includes an article which appeared in Engineering on January 3, 1919.