Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/561

This page needs to be proofread.


Air Scouts Learn to Sketch Battlefields

��Instruction in making drawings which will show accu- rately the enemy's positions, is given to every air scout

���Uuderwood and Underwood

A class of airplane observers making sketches of an enemy's battlefield of sand and sticks. Each man imagines himself to be flying a thousand feet above the battlefield in an airplane

��IMAGINE yourself flying in an airplane a thousand feet over a battlefield, with instructions to make a drawing of what you see. You have but a minute or two to make your drawing, yet you must sketch in the enemy's gun positions, his lines of trenches, his transport roads, and all details of military significance. Your sketch must be accurate, otherwise your batteries would waste valuable am- munition in shelling the enemy's positions and perhaps the plans for an entire offensive would be upset.

That, in brief, is one of the important duties of an airplane scout. To do this work faithfully and accurately the airplane observer must undergo a course of theoreti-

��cal and practical study. Before he takes his first flight he must be able to make sketches of improvised battlefields, one of which is shown in the accompanying illustration.

The men in the picture are grouped about a make-believe battlefield of sand and sticks. Each man, in making his sketch, imagines himself to be a thousand feet or more in the air. His camp stool is his airplane and his pad his sketch sheet. If he fails to make an accurate sketch of the field below him, he is considered to be deficient in his ability to observe. It is seldom that he has a second chance to sketch the same field, for the sand and sticks are changed continually.

��Those of us interested in science, engineering, invention form a kind of guild. We should help one another. The editor of The POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY is willing to answer questions. . , .

��545

�� �