Nikola Tesla broke much ground during his lifetime, but much of his work is still under-utilized to this very day. In the face of Anthony’s article earlier about the smart grid’s lack of solid state electronics at the power distribution level, there is a marriage of solid state switching and Tesla’s more under-appreciated work that is untapped in practical applications to this day.
I speak of the single wire transmission system.
A YouTube search on “Tesla Single Wire Transmission” will bring up numerous results of older engineers demonstrating significant wattage transmitted with only a single ground conductor connecting the wireless transmitter/source to the wireless receiver/load:
I can’t for the life of me find the paper now (but I swear it’s out there on the web, in PDF form – find it, comment a link, win a prize) – but a professor once pointed out an inconsistency within the differential forms of Maxwell’s equations relating Tesla’s single wire power transmission phenomenon to his aether theory that all energy shares an aether.
The Aether theory is a dated one, surpassed by relativity followed by string theory, itself deprecated in favor of newer explanations today.
But nonetheless, the man insists on it and raises very valid points that cannot be ignored – which are backed by experimental evidence by many that suggests more than current science offers an explanation to in the form of energy.
A bulb (resistive load), motor (inductive load) and other various circuits with medium wattage have been demonstrated as being powered wirelessly by this high-frequency getup, with the electric field confined to the destination coil’s proximity (as demonstrated experimentally using a fluorescent tube).
It is therefore obvious that replacing the ground conductor with the physical earth would allow for wireless lighting over some distance, applicable to wireless lighting of outdoor lamps at night since the source coil can be solid state controllable.
This shows some similarities with the single wire earth return system used by electric utility companies to send power into remote regions, but while those utilize the earth as a conductor (at the cost of the poor cows along the way lost to earth potential rise), the high frequency wireless power is instead replaced by a single phase of a distribution line.
Even the IEEE has shown appreciation (though less light shed) on this phenomenon’s highlight by older scientists and engineers, as my research shows.
Do you know about or appreciate wireless power and see its applications? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Raphael is a Physics major in college. He is the least-frequent contributor, but his posts focus on Physics and the mathematics behind some thing. He specializes in quantum physics, but is fluent in Newtonian mechanics, relativity, Maxwell electromagnetism, and nearly any other physical field you can pitch at him other than exercise (though he can calculate energy needed to burn off calories). He is not a member of the Ninja Turtles.