Military Technology: From the Civil War to Today

The summer came to an end with the Union declaring victory over the Confederacy. Over the past 148 years, military technology has evolved in a way that Abraham Lincoln and Robert E. Lee likely couldn’t have imagined. It’s certain that even the most visionary veterans of the Civil War couldn’t have imagined the sophistication of fighter aircraft and helicopters that exist today. Power Conversion Technologies’ first orders were aircraft ground support DC power supplies. Since that first order in 1991, PCTI has supplied custom DC power supplies, battery chargers/dischargers, frequency converters and inverters to the US DOD and other military forces around the globe.

At the beginning of the war between North and South in 1861, soldiers were just introduced to the Gatling Gun. According to a timeline of advances in military technology, this was the rapid fire weapon in American history to work successfully. This precursor to the machine gun was revolutionary at the time, and gave troops power they hadn’t seen before.

Just over a hundred years later, soldiers were offered a new kind of weapon in the M-16 Assault Rifle. This breakthrough rifle that is still used today is fully automatic, which means the person operating this firearm can hold down the trigger for continuous firing, rather than continually pulling the trigger to fire.

Military technology at the time of the civil war also took on new terrain with the USS Monitor. This ironside ship was an example of innovative military technology in late 1861 by being the first vessel of its kind where most of the ship could be submerged underwater except specific appendages like the gun turret. Now submarines are very sophisticated and are on stealthy missions in every sea. PCTI provides battery chargers/dischargers in support of the critical batteries on submarines for naval organizations worldwide.

Military technology has brought soldiers from land to sea to sky and has made it possible for military operations to take flight without leaving the ground. The first major use of unmanned, or drone aircrafts by the US came in 1994 with the MQ-1 Predator. This drone is capable of carrying weapons like missiles, making it so soldiers no longer need to be present to attack a target. PCTI makes inverters for ruggedized communications vehicles that control drones doing important surveillance work.

Since the US was united once again at the end of the Civil War, military technology has evolved drastically. From in-hand weapons to vehicles, the art of modern war would be unrecognizable to the soldiers of the late 1800’s. PCTI has remained a global leader in providing innovative technology for military and industrial use to customers around the world.

About PCTI

PCTI designs and manufactures leading edge power electronic equipment in the highest power ranges. PCTI’s engineering staff has in-depth knowledge in the key areas of power conversion such as power semiconductor analysis and application, thermal exchange, magnetic design, packaging, DSP (digital signal processor) control for inverters, frequency converters, DC power supplies, battery chargers and dischargers. PCTI is a certified DBE woman-owned business. Contact us for more information on our products, applications assistance, or pricing.