Hedy Lamarr (real name Hedwig Eva Maria Kiesler, born November 9, 1914) is a famous Austrian-American actress who was once called “the most beautiful woman in the world”. She came to Hollywood in 1937. Here, Lamarr played many leading roles in hit films, such as Algiers (1938), The Strange Woman (1946) and Samson and Delilah (1949).
Hedy Lamarr is a famous Austrian-American actress who was once called “the most beautiful woman in the world”.
In addition to being an actress, Lamarr was also a pioneering inventor. Disliking parties and socializing with the glitzy Hollywood world, she spent nights tinkering, building, and experimenting in her factory.
Her inventions are diverse, including some unique things like tablets that dissolve in water and form a delicious carbonated drink, or an improved design for a traffic light. through at that time.
However, her most important and greatest invention came from her desire to help America win World War II. As a native of Israel, Lamarr always had a desire to help the Allied Forces defeat the Nazis, so she used all of her abilities and creativity to create devices that would help them. Allied army.
At the time, one of the greatest difficulties facing the Allied Forces was that their torpedo guidance technology was easily thwarted by the Nazis. The Nazi army used submarines that were able to avoid Allied torpedoes by jamming the radio frequencies used for navigation. So, to overcome this problem, Lamarr came up with an ingenious solution: frequency conversion (a method of continuously transforming frequencies that keeps them from being disturbed by outside influences).
Historian Richard Rhodes shared: “Lamarr understands that the problem with radio signals is that they can be interfered with. However, if there were a way to make radio signals ‘jump’ randomly from one frequency to another, then the device would not be able to do that.” enemy jamming will not capture its position”.
“If they try to jam a specific frequency, the signal will still suffer when ‘jumping’ to that frequency, but the time will not be 1 second.”
The most difficult part of the plan was that the switching between frequencies had to take place within a certain time and synchronize with the radio transmitter to guide the torpedo, otherwise it would be damaged and the torpedo would deviate. immediately after being shot.
With the help of composer and inventor George Antheil, Lamarr successfully overcame this challenge. Using their engineering prowess and Antheil’s mechanical skills, they came together to create a device that works with a mechanism similar to a pianola (a kind of self-playing piano) to keep the torpedo and the machine in check. On-board transmitters are synchronized in hops of the signal. By 1942, the two had patented their great invention.
Unfortunately, Lamarr’s invention was not used by the US Navy during World War II, but it was used to transmit radio signals during the Cuban Missile Crisis (1962). More importantly, this method of frequency conversion laid the groundwork for a wide range of radio communication technologies that we still use today.
Currently, the frequency conversion method used for the familiar Bluetooth technology was also used in early Wi-Fi. Besides, this technology has also laid the foundation for the Global Positioning System (GPS) that we still regularly use on smartphones. That means that without Lamarr’s creative mind, our world would not be what it is today.
Unfortunately, her popularity as an actress has led many to overlook her contributions to modern technology and efforts to help the Allied Forces win World War II.
Since then, Lamarr has yet to receive the official recognition he deserves for his achievements.