The Life of Nikola Tesla
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The greatest genius of all time, Nikola Tesla, in his own words.
The chapters in this book were originally written by Nikola Tesla as a series of six articles in "The Electrical Experimenter" magazine in 1919 (February through June, and October issues).
Nikola Tesla had the remarkable ability to design and troubleshoot his complex inventions to the minutest detail all in his mind. He has been called the "Master of Lighting" and the "Father of Alternating Current" and is the inventor of the induction motor, the alternator and the resonant circuit (which would later allow Marconi to build the radio).
Born to Serbian parents on July 9, 1856 in the village of Smiljan (modern-day Croatia), his childhood dream was to harness the power of the Niagara Falls. In 1896, thirty years after telling his uncle that he would do so, the city of Buffalo was powered with his system. The world's first alternating current electrical plant was a success!
Thomas Edison, who had vehemently opposed Tesla's alternating current system ended up changing his systems to Tesla's. Shortly before he died, Edison said that his biggest mistake had been in trying to develop direct current, rather than the superior alternating current system that Tesla had put within his grasp.
In 1888, Tesla's discovery that a magnetic field could be made to rotate, made possible the invention of the AC induction motor. The major advantage of this motor being its brushless operation, which at the time many believed impossible. In fact, when Tesla was studying in college he explained his idea to one of his professors. The professor then went on to "prove" to the class that what Tesla proposed was impossible. Needless to say, Tesla proved him wrong.
While doing research on high-voltage and high frequency electricity and wireless communication in his New York laboratory, Tesla at one point created an earthquake which shook the ground for several miles around.
Many of Tesla's great discoveries, such as the wireless transmission of alternating current, are still a mystery for the scientific world today. Wireless electricity distribution was one of Tesla's most important demonstrations, and consisted in lighting two hundred lamps at a distance of 26 miles from a transmitter coil in Colorado Springs.
After the Colorado Spring experiments, at the end of 1898, Tesla returned to New York and his friend Robert Underwood, editor of Century magazine, invited him to write an article on the problems of the energy of the future. In his article for Century, he stated that burning oil to produce electricity was barbaric and utterly wrong, adding that, with his discovery of transmitting electricity through the earth's magnetic field, it was possible to cover all electrical needs.
Mankind is in debt with Tesla. May this book spark you, the reader, with the energy that captivated the mind of the greatest genius of all time.
Bonus: Tesla's lecture on AC Experiments!
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