Pennant Hills was the location near Sydney of a long-range wireless station which opened in August 1912.
The station is covered in detail by other websites, but is mentioned here because:
- Part of its function was to communicate with wireless stations in New Zealand
- The station was the model for New Zealand’s two high-power stations, at Awanui and Awarua
In September 1910, the Australian Federal Executive Council announced its intention to acquire 30 acres at Pennant Hills for a wireless station. The station was built by the Australasian Wireless Company Limited, agents for Telefunken of Germany, and not to be confused with the rival Australian Wireless Company which had built the station at Melbourne.
[In the photo above] the receiver can be seen in front of the operator’s chair with the wavemeter to the right. The transmit/receive crank lever can be seen to the left, together with three vertical cords, with handles and vertical scales above, counter-weighted below the table. These would have controlled various functions in the high tension room which would have been no place to be while the station was operating.
– George Newlands
The station cost £4,150, plus £2,000 when the Government changed the station location to Pennant Hills after the contract had been signed to build it on the coast.
Australasian Wireless Company Limited, representing Telefunken, was also the successful bidder for the two high-power stations in New Zealand. Photos of the Pennant Hills station show that it was almost identical to the New Zealand stations, dominated by a 400′ tower and its three concrete anchor houses for the tower stays, except that the New Zealand stations were built on flat ground – swamps, in fact, to gain the best earth conductivity.
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