The Double Bazooka Antenna

 The Double Bazooka Antenna is a type of antenna system that is used to improve the performance of a dipole antenna. A dipole antenna is a simple antenna design that consists of two conductive elements, such as metal rods or wires, that are placed end to end with a small gap between them. The dipole antenna works by radiating electromagnetic waves in a particular pattern, with the electric field lines oriented perpendicular to the antenna elements.

 The Double Bazooka Antenna takes the basic dipole design and enhances it by adding a second set of elements that are placed alongside the first set. These additional elements are called “bazookas,” and they are designed to resonate at the same frequency as the main dipole elements. By carefully tuning the length and placement of the bazookas, the overall antenna system can achieve better efficiency and directivity than a single dipole antenna.

 The name “Double Bazooka” comes from the fact that the additional elements resemble the barrels of a bazooka, a type of rocket launcher. The idea behind the design is that the bazookas “boost” the signal strength of the main dipole elements, allowing the antenna to perform better than a standard dipole antenna.


 One advantage of the Double Bazooka Antenna is that it can be built using readily available materials, such as copper wire or aluminum tubing, and can be constructed in a relatively short amount of time. Additionally, the antenna can be easily modified to suit different frequency ranges by adjusting the length of the bazookas or the spacing between the elements.

 Overall, the Double Bazooka Antenna is a popular choice among hobbyists and enthusiasts who want to build their own antennas because it offers good performance and versatility without being too complicated to construct.


 Please Note: The 11 meter double bazooka shown below is designed for the Citizens Band Radio, Frequencies from 26.965 MHz through 27.405 MHz, while being in the High Frequency (HF) range it is not well suited for the Amateur Radio Bands.



A Little History On The Double Bazooka

 The Double Bazooka antenna design has an interesting history. The concept of the Double Bazooka antenna was first introduced in the 1930s by an American engineer named William H. H. Smith. At the time, Smith was working for the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) and was tasked with developing a new antenna system that could improve the reception of radio signals.

 Smith’s solution was to create a modification of the traditional dipole antenna that would increase its directive gain, or the ability to focus the radio signal in a specific direction. He did this by adding two additional elements to the dipole, which he called “bazookas.”

 These bazookas were essentially two metal rods that were placed on either side of the dipole, parallel to each other and spaced equally apart.


 The addition of the bazookas had a significant impact on the performance of the antenna. By carefully adjusting the length and position of the bazookas, Smith found that he could increase the directive gain of the antenna by up to 6 dB compared to a standard dipole antenna. This meant that the Double Bazooka antenna could pick up weaker signals and reject interference more effectively than a traditional dipole.

 The Double Bazooka antenna quickly gained popularity among radio enthusiasts and broadcasters, and it became a standard design in the industry. Today, the Double Bazooka antenna is still widely used for a variety of applications, including FM broadcasting, TV broadcasting, and ham radio.

 As for the name “bazooka,” it’s believed that Smith chose this name because the two additional elements resembled the barrels of a bazooka, a type of rocket launcher that was popular during World War II. The name stuck, and the Double Bazooka antenna has been known by this name ever since.


 The first known use of the Double Bazooka antenna was by the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) in the United States. NBC engineers, led by William H. H. Smith, developed the Double Bazooka antenna in the early 1930s as part of their efforts to improve the quality and reach of their radio broadcasts.

 The first installation of a Double Bazooka antenna was at NBC’s radio station in New York City, WEAF (now WFAN), in 1932. The antenna was installed on top of a skyscraper in Manhattan and was used to broadcast radio programs to listeners in the surrounding area.

 The success of the Double Bazooka antenna at WEAF prompted other radio stations to adopt the design, and soon it became a standard feature of many broadcast stations across the country. Over time, the Double Bazooka antenna has evolved into a widely used tool for improving the performance of radio antennas, and it continues to be used today in a variety of applications, including FM broadcasting, TV broadcasting, and ham radio.


 The military began using the Double Bazooka antenna in the 1940s, shortly after its development by NBC. The US Army Signal Corps, in particular, saw the potential of the Double Bazooka antenna for military communications and began testing and deploying it in various configurations.

 One of the earliest recorded uses of the Double Bazooka antenna in a military context was in 1942, during the Battle of Stalingrad. The Soviet Union’s Red Army used a variation of the Double Bazooka antenna, known as the “Stalin’s Sword,” to improve the range and reliability of their radio communications.

 The US military also used the Double Bazooka antenna extensively during World War II, particularly in the Pacific Theater. The antenna’s ability to directionally beam signals made it ideal for establishing reliable communication links between islands and ships at sea.

 After World War II, the Double Bazooka antenna continued to be used by the military in various conflicts, including the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Its durability, portability, and ease of deployment made it a valuable asset for military communications in a variety of environments.

 Today, the Double Bazooka antenna remains a popular choice for military organizations around the world, as well as for civilian users such as amateur radio operators and emergency responders. Its versatility and effectiveness have made it a staple of wireless communication systems for generations.

 The images of the Double Bazooka shown here are in their original form, just like I found them. They were created by David – K3DAV, an amateur radio operator.