Armstrong 70th Anniversary Commemeration of FM Radio
Saturday June 11, 2005
June 11, 2005 saw the 70th anniversary commemeration of FM, developed by Major Edwin Howard Armstrong. This commemeration
took place at the Armstrong tower site in Alpine, N.J. This event was hosted by the owners and operators of the Alpine
Tower Company, CSC Management of which Charles E. Sackermann, Jr, is President. Through their efforts the history of this
site has been preserved. This historic tower site also played host as an emergency site to many of New York City's broadcasters
after the tragic events of 9/11/2001. Since this time the site has been closed to the general public but still maintains
a very interesting radio museum.
The anniversary event ran from 11 am until 3:45 pm and included a special commemerative program broadcast on 42.8 MHz, Armstrong's old
FM frequency. It was simulcast by WFDU, 89.1 MHz, who also has their transmitter at this site. The replica of Armstrong's
Phasitron transmitter used for the broadcast on 42.8 MHz was built by Steve Hemphill. Steve is the owner of Solid
Electronics Labs which manufactures FM exciters and processors. The broadcast, which started at 11:45 am, was hosted by
Judy DeAngelis who may be heard during morning drive on news station WINS. A question and answer session with a panel of speakers and
the attendees of the event was part of the broadcast. The panel included Robert Carter Brecht, a desendant of Major Armstrong,
people who had worked with Armstrong in the development of FM and Mike Katzdorn who maintains an extensive
web site on Edwin H. Armstrong. Following the panel discussion a
special version of Empire of the Air was broadcast.
This was truely an historic event. I would personallylike to thank Mike Erickson for making the arrangements and providing
To see more of Steve's transmitter visit The Phasitron Tube Transmitter Web Page.
Entering the Arstrong site in Alpine, N.J.
Looking up at the Armstrong tower and a smaller tower at the site.
The base of one of the tower legs.
The Armstrong building with the call letters W2XMN over the door.
Entering the building we see the WFDU remote set up which will be used to simulcast the event.
The plaques on the wall.
Up a step and through a door we see the shelves of equipment in the Armstrong Radio Museum.
Hey, what does it mean when you see your rig in a museum?
In the corner are 2 Heathkit HG-10 VFOs and a DX-60 transmitter. On another shelf sits a Johnson Valiant transmitter.
The display case is full of microphones. As we turn around we see a Johnson Challenger transmitter on the shelf behind us.
There's 2 old Keystone 8mm projectors. Hey, my dad had one of those! Through the door is more equipment.