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Tesla coil explanation?

Discussion in 'Misc Electronics' started by LRW, Sep 15, 2003.

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  1. LRW

    LRW Guest

    Hi.
    A couple of years ago I saw, I think it was an A&E Biography on Tesla.
    I was fascinated! I had no idea he was responsible for so much, and so
    forgotten despite all he did and the ideas he had that seem
    revolutionary.

    Anyway, I remember something about an idea for using Tesla coils to
    transmit electricity safely through the air long distances, instead of
    using powerlines. I tried to explain it to someone, and completely
    fell on my face because I don't quite remember what it was about.

    If this sounds familiar to anyone, could someone point me to a Web
    site that might explain this? I did a Google search, and came up with
    some interesting tidbits (like the Tesla-Westinghouse AC vs. Edison's
    DC,) and general info on Tesla coils...but nothing about his ideas for
    using it to power cities.

    Thanks for any help!!
    Liam
    druid at celticbear dot com
     
  2. Don Bruder

    Don Bruder Guest

    You didn't find anything 'cause you're basically looking for hen's
    teeth...

    Tesla never told anybody (or if he did, they aren't talking about it,
    even today) the precise "how it's supposed to work" of his wireless
    power system. He went broke before the prototype tower was completed,
    and after his death, with nobody knowing how it was supposed to work,
    the tower was dismantled and sold for scrap. All we know *FOR CERTAIN*
    is that the system involved a bizarre-looking copper-domed tower for
    transmitting. Only Tesla himself knew exactly what was intended to go
    into the tower, and since he ran out of money before the tower was to
    the point where the gear could be moved in, let alone hooked up, nobody
    (to my knowledge) ever even saw what he had planned for the innards of
    the thing.

    One speculation says that the Tunguska Blast *MAY* have been caused by
    Tesla's initial testing of a new weapon based on the same "wireless
    power" technology, but that one's rather a stretch, at least based on
    the "evidence" I've seen put forward to support it. At least one
    "sub-theory" of this particular speculation says that the blast happened
    because he aimed the device incorrectly - Supposedly, he was shooting at
    the north pole, with the goal of cracking the polar ice cap as a "high
    visibility, low actual damage result", but overshot into Russia and
    leveled hundreds, even thousands, of acres of forestland (and probably a
    few reindeer) in a kaboom literally heard 'round the world.
     
  3. R

    R Guest


    Hehehehe.... ROFLMAO... this really made my day. Surely this is some strange
    mix-up with Jules Verne though :)
     
  4. Don Bruder

    Don Bruder Guest

    Nope... zero Jules Verne involved. In the speculation, that is... Tesla
    himself made claims that he had a new weapon system that would eliminate
    the very possibility of war, it was so overpowering. One shot, and any
    agressor would basically vanish from the map. From commentary on some
    equations in the fragments of his notes (equations which may or may not
    have actually pertained to the device in question - Again, nobody seems
    to know for sure) it's been estimated that the energy output of a hit
    from this thing would make Little Boy and Fat Man (The two nukes that
    we dropped on Japan) TOGETHER look like a single kitchen match being
    struck at the bottom of a lake. He definitely had *SOMETHING*
    weapon-like, but to the best of my knowing, he never actually "went
    public" with either the device, or the details involved. Best guess that
    anybody has is that it was in his Colorado Springs facility. Nobody
    seems to be at all sure, though. Certainly, his Colorado Springs lab
    produced a whole bunch of "interesting toys". Unfortunately (or maybe
    fortunately?) it's my understanding that his creditors descended on the
    lab after his death like buzzards on a carcass, and basically dismantled
    things without any kind of concern for what devices might have been in
    it, including his "big gun" coil (the 20-something footer that would
    throw lightning bolts several hundred feet) then sold the stuff off for
    junk, forever bollixing any hope of knowing for certain what he had
    actually come up with. The man was a genius, and secretive to the point
    of paranoia, but if he actually cooked up a weapon that could make a
    nuke look tame, I guess it isn't really paranoia to want to keep it on
    the quiet...
     
  5. -----------
    OH yes we do, Tesla became a fruitcake in his later years, producing
    nothing that worked and blathering delusions.

     
  6. Modat22

    Modat22 Guest

    Didn't Telsa come up with the idea of using rarified air (excited with
    UV) as a method of transmitting energy wirelessly? There is
    experimenting happening now with the use of UV lasers in wireless stun
    guns (currently the size of a suit case)

    From what I remember reading about Telsa his weapon idea was based on
    building up a charge in the upper atmosphere and releasing it using a
    rarified air streamer to the ground.

    I'm babbling. Still I've never seen any proof of this stuff so its SCI
    FI
     
  7. exxos

    exxos Guest

    Tesla firstly used tubes filled of gas instead of wires to transmitt power,
    though the word "Transmit" is really the wrong word for it. Latter Tesla
    moved to "high grounds" and found that the air itself broke down under the
    correct conditions. Tesla did "transmitt" the power, though not by what we
    would think, it was "conduction" though the air not "transmitt though the
    air". A common mistake.

    Chris
     
  8. LRW

    LRW Guest

    Wow, some pretty cool stuff.
    But so, I assume, there's really no info on the theory/plans to power
    towns by using wireless electricity streams, or something like that?
    I could have sworn A&E's Biography mentioned it.
    Guess I'll have to go buy the tape or something.
    =)
    OK, carry on. Now about this laser-like weapon using a rareified air
    stream?
     
  9. Sadly, it is pretty well documented that Tesla was a genius during his
    youth, but lost it and went arguably insane in his later years. More
    sad still is the fact that many of his fans tend to focus, not on his
    productive years, but on his more silly ideas that reflect on his
    profound lack of knowledge of electromagnetic field theory.

    Harry C.
     
  10. Tesla has a following of pseudo science groupies. The inverse square law
    and other physical constraints make this form of energy transfer far less
    than practical for high power applications. As we know, it works great for
    radio, TV, GPS, etc. He was a weird genius (redundant ?) and often at odds
    with folks like Edison and perhaps said some strange things in public while
    embroiled in bitter battles. Unfortunately, it seems that we are stuck with
    50/60 Hz and transmission lines on high towers for the foreseeable future.
     
  11.  
  12. --------------
    Yup. A real nutcake late in life, and the insane paranoid conspiracy
    fixated antiscientific-schizophrenic fruit and nutcake Tesla-ites are
    attracted to him like bugs to a light. It's like these cranks can
    find each other's craziness wherever they are like a funny smell only
    they can smell. They can sense other crazies and it attracts them
    beyond their ability to decipher and separate truth from delusion.

    -Steve
     
  13. -------------
    No, delusion and insanity.

    -------------------------
    Doesn't exist, go learn real physics so you'll know better. There aren't
    any "conspiracies" in science, it's too wide open.

    ---------------
    Stop believing shit you see on TV, it is meant to attract little nuts
    like you for ratings, it isn't true.

    -------------------------
    Garbage. The problem with sci-fi is that it halfways sounds like the
    stuff they discover later actually works, and it makes paranoid fools
    think that anything vaguely real-sounding is a "great discovery" that
    is being suppressed by "the powers that be"!

    Ever hear of the flux capacitor? Go watch 'Back to the Future'.
    -Steve
     
  14. LRW

    LRW Guest

    Whoa, Steve! Chill. I think you're confusing me with a zealot or
    something. I simply asked about something I saw on TV not proporting
    its truth, but to ask if it's true and if so, to get some real info on
    it. If the info I get here leads me to the conclusion it's simply
    "shit I saw on TV", then this "little nut" (who is just CRRAAAZY
    enough to try to get actual info on something, wow, that's just NUTS!)
    will not believe in it.

    I unfortunately squandered my education on BA's and my career in Web
    design, so not being a trained physicist the best I can do is hear
    something on TV or read about it in a book or online, and then go out
    and look for more information.
    I'm not trusting A&E's Biography, that crazy insane show for
    conspiracy theorists that 100% wrong, (sarcasm, Steve,) for all my
    news and education. I came on here asking about it so educated people
    (note I came to sci.electronics.misc and not
    alt.crazy.ideas.that.are.wrong) hoping to get good info from
    knowledgeable people in the field of electronics to explain to me why
    it's right or wrong and possibly where to go for more info.

    Are the personal insults really necessary?

    And I'll admit in text my "OK, carry on. Now about this laser-like
    weapon using a rareified air stream?" didn't sound as light-hearted as
    it was meant and I don't blame you for taking it like I really wanted
    more info on it as if I believed it to be fact. I forgot the smillie
    at the end, I guess.
    But it does sound interesting from a sci-fi scense, which isn't a bad
    thing.
    Remember, sci-fi can be very entertaining. Asimiov and Arthur C. Clark
    and even Carl Sagan who's had his hand in writing some sci-fi would
    probably have some issues with your implication that sci-fi is
    "garbage."

    Anyway, without matching rant with flame, I hope I politely and
    respectfuly expressed my shock and surprise as well as umbridge with
    your rather insulting and acerbic tone regarding my quest for accurate
    information, and interest in fanciful sci-fi.

    Thanks!
    Liam
     
  15. Modat22

    Modat22 Guest


    Often it is the person with a crazy idea or slight insanity that
    discovers an amazing new discovery. I wouldn't knock any ones ideas,
    though there are a few I'd call nut cakes to myself. I love telsa
    coils, ion floaters, and TT Brown's stuff on the internet. The most
    enjoyable part is looking at the junk and figuring out what was really
    happening.

    But I must say that if I see a person wearing an aluminum foil cap on
    your head I might look at you funny.
     
  16.  
  17. ------------------
    No, it isn't. That's merely a delusion of the paranoid borderline
    schizophrenic and white trash morons so they can comfort themselves
    for their academic failure.


    I wouldn't knock any ones ideas,
     
  18. LRW

    LRW Guest

    At risk of fanning the flames, isn't that a rather obtuse statement dripping
    with hyperbole?
    I'm not agreeing that ALL people who are slightly insane come up with the
    crazy ideas; I'd say 99.5% of crazy people live out their lives as ...crazy.
    However, I'd go so far as to say 90% of the most amazing discoveries have
    come from people with a little madness.
    Again, I'm not a historian or a physicist, but some ideas that come to mind
    are Pasteur (sp). The idea of using mold to cure disease?? Insane! Or the
    guy who invented the smallpox vaccine. He tested a potentially lethal
    vaccine on himself. You'd have to be a little nuts to do that, not to
    mention it's a little crazy, the idea of injecting a live virus in order to
    destroy a virus? Madness!
    How about Newton? He was at best a neurotic, and DiVinci was thought to be a
    manic-depressive. Everyone who knew him thought that Feynman was an insane
    genius, and don't forget that "Beautiful Mind" schizophrenic. And the
    Curies? Playing around with radiation, for what most people thought was no
    good reason? That was surely insane! And Edison was an obsessive-compulsive
    who some also think was manic-depressive. And everyone here has mentioned,
    including yourself, that Tesla was cookoo, but I think his place in the
    history of geniuses is gaurenteed. After all, he's responsible for at leas
    alternating current.

    I think people who pass off the idea that great minds and great ideas don't
    come from people a little off kilter, is deluding themselves blind to their
    mediocrity. It takes someone who the masses see as a little nuts to go
    beyond the fringes of what's "possible" in order to come up with bigger and
    better.

    And besides, I guess an eliteist who has no real clue about people wouldn't
    realize a "white trash" person is generally white trash because they don't
    care about education, and really couldn't care less about what other people
    consider academic failures...but to them is nothing.

    My $1.02. Keep the change. =)
    Liam
     
  19. Mjolinor

    Mjolinor Guest

    Or in a nutshell they have to think "outside the box" to come up with
    radical ideas, if "outside the box" doesn't mean insane then what does.
     
  20. Modat22

    Modat22 Guest

    Yeppers I agree. People that are different from the majority are see
    as living outside the majority and are usually labled in some really
    interesting ways. There are still discoveries to be made, and I bet
    most of them will be found by those outside the box, with a few hairs
    short of a pelt.
     
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