Meet The Man Who Pressed The Button Of Communications
His works and struggles
JUNE 30,1999 MARKED THE
71th ANNIVERSARY OF THE DEATH OF FATHER ROBERTO LANDELL DE MOURA - THE
FIRST MAN TO TRANSMIT THE HUMAN VOICE BY MEANS OF A WIRELESS MACHINE
A TRIBUTE TO FATHER ROBERTO LANDELL DE MOURA
Father Landell de Moura
we all admire the great men and women who left an indelible and positive
mark for humanity, in every manifestation of human wisdom. Some were philosophers,
clergymen, poets, artists and scientists. These peope were moved by great
inspiration. Many had short lives, passing by Earth but for a few brief
moments, much like a celestial body would streak through the Firmament,
though leaving profound and permanent landmarks for the future generations
Those landmarks were creations in the search for a
better tomorrow. Each one of these great persons came, took
his/her turn, passed the baton, and went.
In each fleeting
moment in humanity's timeline, they gave us yet another "brick" to
construct a better "building" for us to live in.
But... not all these great persons, who spent all their
lives in the research of their discoveries, received the appropriate credit
for their efforts.
One of those, was Father Roberto Landell de Moura - Father
Landell, as he liked to be called - a Brazilian who was born in the city
of Porto Alegre - Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil.
Do you know him? - You don't?
Well, we in Brazil
spent our time in school being told that Guglielmo Marconi was the inventor
But the man who for the first time accomplished the transmission
of the human voice by a wireless machine, that is, by irradiating an electromagnetic
wave, modulated by an audio signal, was none other than this Brazilian
He conducted his first public experiment on June 03,
1900 in front of journalists and the General Consul of Great Britain, Mr.
C.P.Lupton, in the City of São Paulo, Brazil, reaching a distance
of approximately 8 kms.
The points of transmission and reception were: the Santana
Borough and Avenida Paulista in the downtown sector.
During that time,
the only available means of communications were the Wired Telegraph invented
by Samuel Morse (1837), the Wired Telephone by Graham Bell (1876) and radiotelegraphy
by Marconi (1895).
The great challenge
was to transmit an audio signal without the aid of wires.
Several scientists were trying to accomplish this, but
Father Landell was the first to succeed.
His merits are great ones, when we take into account
that he developed it totally on his own!.
Father Landell, a person of mystical qualities, was also
a very practical man, indeed.
Many great scientists are superlative in the applications
of theory. Father Landell integrated theoretical and practical qualities
at the same time.
He was the scientist, an engineer and a worker.
One year after
the above experiment in public, he receives his first patent from the Brazilian
government. It was described as " equipment for the purpose
of phonetic transmissions through space, land and water elements at a distance
with or without the use of wires".
It is dated March 09, 1901.
Four months later,
conscious that his invention had real value, he left Brazil for the United
States of America with the intent of patenting the machine at the U.S.Patent
Office in Washington, DC.
With scarce resources, he had to rely on friends such
as Daniel Tamagno to push ahead his project.
In spite of great difficulties, three patents were
finally awarded: "The Wave Transmitter" (Oct 11, 1904) which is the precursor
of today's radio transceiver; " The Wireless Telephone" and the "Wireless
Telegraph", both dated Nov 22, 1904.
In the same
year, he conceived yet another invention: "The Telephotorama", or "The
Distance Vision", the precursor of television as we know it today, which
would be demonstrated publicly only by the year of 1926.
A few of his manuscripts infere that some video communications
problems had already been solved by him.
This allows us to conclude that Father Landell was in
the path to create "The Transmission and Reception of Images".
He can be considered
a pioneer of television, even if few documents have survived him. It cannot
be determined to what point he researched the subject.
Some of those documents were studied by Telebras and
a conclusion was reached that the sketches were "A Study
to Build a Telegraph Register".
That indicates that at the minimum, Father Landell idealized
a remote control via radio or teletype, inventions that would become
known by World War I.
With the support
of three U.S.Patents, he believed that his future was a bright one.
Upon his return to Brazil, he wrote to the then President
of Brazil, Mr. Rodrigues Alves, requesting the use of two Navy ships to
conduct radio transmission experiments.
In the missive,
he expressed that the vessels should be placed at "At The Greatest
Distance Possible Among Them, Since In the Future, Radio Would Be Used
For Space Travel Communications".
That statement caused him to be judged mentally unstable,
if we take into account that after a long period, he received a presidential
diplomatic response letter, declaring the unavailability of such Navy equipment.
As far as in space
travel is concerned, we can affirm the following: "The Rest is History...."
Due to the incredulous mindset of the authorities of
that era, many important pieces of his equipment were destroyed.
As we can see, Father Landell's singular mind and
the magnitude of his works, were not given the proper recognition.
His name, as well
as his Country d'ont appear in the legitimate credits, once its happens,
it should be reason of great pride for all Brazilians.
Information was gathered from several sources and
shown on a July 16, 1988 report of a Porto Alegre newspaper, and FEPLAM
- (Fundação Educacional Padre Landell de Moura) - The Father
Landell Educational Foundation.
built a replica of The Wave Transmitter and upon conclusion
of the tests, it was determided that it can reach a broad spectrum,
Within its limitations, the transceiver works,
and is uncontested proof of his genius.
The equipment is on display for public viewing at the
FEPLAM, in Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul.
A Brief Biographical History
of Father Landell De Moura Born
on January 21, 1861 in the City of Porto Alegre, in the State of Rio Grande
do Sul, Brazil.
Ordained as a Roman Catholic
Priest in Rome, in the year of 1886. There, he also studied in the field
of Physics and Chemistry Research, developing the first concepts about
"Unity and Physics Forces" and
"Universal Harmony". These theories
would guide him to his future inventions.
He also took interest in the "Physics
and Science" and the "Medicine and Chemistry" fields.
Father Landell researched that
all bodies - animate and inanimate - were encircled by a coloured luminous
energy halo, invisible to the naked eye.
of his documents pointing to that discovery exist, dating from the year
In fact, he photographed the effect
in 1909, which would be known as "The Kirlian Effect",
due to the works of the Russian couple Semyon and Valentina Kirlian.
Father Landell passed away in Porto
Alegre, on June 30, 1928.
He was an inspired human
being, who was way ahead his time
This is our humble tribute to him.