E.E. 'Doc' Smith:
Science Fiction Technology and Ideas
Edward Elmer Smith (1890-1965) was the science fiction author who wrote the Lensman series and the Skylark series. He was born in Idaho; he received his doctorate in Chemical Engineering from George Washington University in 1919. He worked as a 'food technologist' for the Dawn Doughnut Company, then worked for the US Army from 1941-1945. His novels are considered by most fans to be the progenitors of the 'space opera' genre; Smith himself stated that he preferred to invent fictional technologies that are not strictly impossible.
Invention/Technology Source Work (Publication Date)

3D Tank Display
A transparent cube showing a three-dimensional display.

Triplanetary (1934)

Ablative Heat (Reentry) Shield - very early reference
A single-use shield or covering designed to accept the heat of reentry and burn off.

Triplanetary (1934)

Acceleration-tank - very early reference
A water-filled tank used to ease the strains of acceleration.

Triplanetary (1934)

An intermediate chamber between airless space and the interior of a space craft.

Skylark of Space (1928)

Artificial eye - first use of this idea?
A surgically-implanted artificial eyeball.

Galactic Patrol (1937)

Artificial Planet - before the Death Star
A very large constructed object in space.

Triplanetary (1934)

Bergenholm Drive
A device that renders a spaceship free of inertia.

Triplanetary (1934)

Black Coating - very early reference
A material that absorbs practically all incident light.

Gray Lensman (1942)

A small device that works to communicate over large distances.

Skylark of Valeron (1934)

Cone of Battle - the ultimate weapon
An offensive formation of space ships providing the ultimate in firepower.

Triplanetary (1934)

Deep-Space - my dwelling place
Typically refers to the vast empty regions of interstellar space.

Triplanetary (1934)

Dekon Type DCQ - radiation decontamination
Decontamination foam.

Subspace Explorers (1965)

Directrix Z9M9Z
A control center ship for a vast space armada.

Gray Lensman (1942)

Drop Shaft (Neutralization of Inertia) - watch that first step
An 'elevator shaft' in which the user can fall at the speed of gravity, then be stopped without inertia (i.e., instantly).

Galactic Patrol (1937)

Emergency Lifeboat - very early space rescue vehicle
A small craft used as a bail-out vehicle from a large space station or spacecraft.

Triplanetary (1934)

Ether-Wall - an invisibility field.
An invisibility field.

Triplanetary (1934)

Extradimensional - out of here
From another dimension.

Skylark of Valeron (1934)

The transparent front of a space suit helmet.

Skylark Three (1930)

A small craft used for short-range journeys.

Vortex Blaster (1941)

Flying Harness
Device allows free movement in the air.

Skylark of Space (1928)

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