A partnership between the RTP Museum Center and the Natural Electricity Museum allows to bring to the public, simultaneously in Lisbon and Seia, objects, images and sounds that are part of the historical and technological heritage of the Portuguese public radio service.
In Portugal, in 1932, coinciding with the “Estado Novo's” assertion, it was decided to establish a state-owned broadcaster, known as the “Emissora Nacional”.
In April 1934 the experimental broadcasts began, especially with erudite music, didactic messages and propaganda. In June of 1934 it was constituted the “Emissora Nacional” Symphony Orchestra.
On august 4, 1935, E.N. was officially inaugurated.
The history of E.N. in this period is also a reflection of international conflicts, especially the Spanish Civil War and World War II.
In these first years, the National Broadcaster followed the international technological development, being even in the front line among European congeners with respect to, for example, emission recording, introduced in 1936. The technical center, automatic installation that accompanied the control service of medium-wave and shortwave programs.
After the Second World War there was a huge development of the communications sector.
In the National Broadcasting, corresponding to the technological development associated to the radio, the decades of 50 and 60 were marked by the reinforcement of the national coverage (installation of new regional transmitters).
In addition to the national coverage strategy, the growing tension in the colonial framework has led to increased emissions to the overseas territories, especially since the invasion of Goa, Daman and Diu by Indian Union troops. The installation of the Overseas Emission Center was therefore accelerated, having been inaugurated in Pegões, in 1954. In the short term, the greatest challenge to the continuity of the “Estado Novo” policy came with the emergence of liberation movements in Africa and the ensuing outbreak of the colonial war in 1961.
Among the strategies to reinforce the effectiveness of programming, the most notable ones were the English-language issues aimed at defending the regime's colonial position. The expanded coverage also reinforced the centrality of the EN in the world, covering an area that reached the American, Asian and African continents.
Between 1952 and 1956, the possibilities of introducing the Modulated Frequency (FM) were also studied, which came into operation in 1956.
The 25 of April of 1974 operated deep breaks in the Portuguese society, soon reflected in the life of “Emissora Nacional”. The following months corresponded to a period of rupture changing the public radio. Production logics have been altered, particularly in musical programming and information, and in relation to the new political power, as well as the rules of internal functioning.
The change of regime and the abolition of censorship allowed the hearing, in the musical antenna of the public radio, of many personalities linked to the world of music, previously banished.
The political tension of the revolutionary process was also felt in the National Broadcaster and in the other media, culminating, in December 1975, in the nationalization of the media and consequently in the nationalization of radio. Finally, on February 23, 1976, it changed its name to “Rádiodifusão Portuguesa” (RDP).