The Loop Antenna was used for navigating by radio, which was a common practice in WWII, just as it is today. Obviously, modern radio navigation antennas look much different! Antennas like this would be attached to the top or bottom of an airplane’s fuselage. The Loop Antenna was part of a system known as a radio compass. Instead of having a flight deck indicator needle pointing toward the north pole, the needle with a radio compass would point toward a broadcasting radio station at a known location on a map. The antenna would pick up the station’s signals.
As shown in one of the attached pictures, the strength of the received signal depended upon the position of the antenna relative to the station. An air crew would tune in the frequency of the radio station, and based on the strength of the received signal, the direction of the station relative to the airplane could be determined.
Picture four shows three ways the Loop Antenna was used on airplanes. On Miss Mitchell, the loop antenna is enclosed by a black teardrop shaped structure, as shown in picture two.
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