Skip to main content

Recovering old radio broadcasts

Posted in

There are many millions of radio broadcasts that go unrecorded every year. Some of these are insignificant, and not worthy of recording, but there are some that are more worthy.

What about all of the old broadcasts from the first foray into the radio world. Wouldn't it be great to be able to hear every radio broadcast that was ever made?

I have a solution. As we are led to believe, radio broadcasts from earth leak from our planet into space. Space is a vast area, in which radio waves can travel away from earth at the speed of light.

All that would be required to recover these old broadcasts would be to travel to the point in space where the radio broadcast is just entering. You would be able to record the broadcast as if it were on your home radio set.

For example... to record the first radio broadcast that was made (December 24, 1906 from Brant Rock, Massachusetts.) you would calculate how long ago it was compared with the current time (11/08/2006 12pm - ish)
With this example, I shall call it one hundred years exactly.

x = 31 556 926 Seconds in a year
x * 100 = seconds in a hundred years
= 31 556 926 00 seconds.

Light travels at 299 792 458 m/s

so... speed of light x number of seconds = distance travelled by radio from earth in metres

31 556 926 00 x 299 792 458

= 9.46x10^17

or 946 trillion kilometres from earth.

or to put it in light years

100 light years.

The average size of a galaxy is said to be around 100,000 light years across.

I realise there is one major drawback to this plan, which at the moment renders it completely useless... It assumes you can travel faster than light.

travelling over 900 trillion kilometers is a fair distance... unless we learn to fold space, or travel in hyperdimensions, this is a pipe dream.

The lazy method.

The lazy method is to wait for the radio broadcasts to get caught just outside the event horizon of a black hole and to be flung back to Earth. The bad news is the nearest one is 1600 light years away. The good news is we have 3100 years to invent a radio telescope accurate enough to pick the signals out from the massive amount of background radiation.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.