Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/696

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Fighting at Night with Searchlight Torpedoes

The torpedoes carry searchlights which are lighted by means of a time fuse when the enemy ships are almost reached

���One by one the torpedoes are launched. They curve and glide about, revealing the enemy's position but not that of the home fleet. Below is shown the plan of the torpedo in detail

���AF L E E T which could illuminate the battleships of its enemy and be itself unseen would stand in a good way to whip the best navy afloat. Torpedoes for carrying out such tactics have already been developed by Alphonse Fernandez, a Spanish inventor. Not gunpowder, but a brilliant searchlight is the charge of these torpedoes.

Imagine yourself on a fleet whose search- lights have just flashed upon several hostile craft in the distant darkness. Out go your lights, your stationary searchlights also, for you do not wish to give your next maneuvers away. As your ships start at once to detour, the torpedoes are made ready. These are constructed and propelled like the regulation, high-explosive

��torpedo. The gyro- scopes in them are set to steer the torpedoes on a cir- cuitous path to- wards the enemy. The timing gear is also adjusted to trip the electric switch and to turn on the arc- lights after the torpedoes have gone a sufficient distance from you. Everything being now ready, the signal is given and one after another the torpedoes are launched!

They curve round and finally glide straight towards the ships of the enemy without revealing your own position. The enemy may try to dodge the beams, but before they can run out of the brilliant light of the entire school of torpedoes your gunners will have a chance at sinking, or at least, disabling their shins.

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