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28 October 2014

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Atlantic Leap 2001
Thunderer's design
The Thunderer Squadron equipment is similar that used 100 years ago.

One hundred years after Marconi's trans-Atlantic wireless leap the event is re-enacted.

Thunderer Squadron from Southampton will be sending a signal to Newfoundland.

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Thunderer Squadron

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Fact file banner+Southampton based Naval students will be re-enacting Marconi's Atlantic Leap.

+They will be based on the original Poldhu site.

+The morse code message will be sent to Signal Hill in Newfoundland just like Marconi's original message.

+The equipment used is based on Marconi's designs.


To mark the 100th anniversary of Marconi's Atlantic Leap the training students from Royal Navy Thunderer Squadron will turn back the clocks.

They will be re-enacting Marconi's transmission using an authentic spark gap transmitter to ensure it is as historically accurate as possible.

The group of students based at Southampton University will be broadcasting from the original Marconi spot at Poldhu.

The idea for Atlantic Leap 2001 came from the need to stretch the engineering students of Thunderer Squadron. The course leaders wanted project management and practical engineering to be highlighted.

The project is being run in conjunction with the United States Naval Academy and the Canadian Forces School of Communications and Electronics.


The equipment the team has designed is worked by a large generator and transformer. The components are similar to the original parts used by Marconi.

The team will have to control their frequencies or they could interfere with everything from television to digital watches.

Marconi did not have that problem because he only had the long-range transmitter so did not have to consider anyone else.

If the team did not put a filter on, everyone in Britain would hear the experiment whether they wanted to or not.

Lieutenant Simpson
Lieutenant Scott Simpson

Exactly 100 years after Marconi's Atlantic Leap the students will also be sending the letter "S" in Morse code from Poldhu to Signal Hill in Newfoundland.

The project's co-ordinator Lieutenant Scott Simpson is delighted with the opportunity.

He says:"It's a really exciting project to be involved in. We're really looking forward to coming to the County and taking part in the celebrations."

The Atlantic Leap 2001 is just one of many events going on during the 100th anniversary celebrations on December 12.

Another leap across the Atlantic will take place at 4pm on the day. This will include greetings sent from the Canadian government and HRH Queen Elizabeth II. Marconi's daughter The Princess Elettra and his grandson Prince Guglielmo will also be involved.


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