4.15.2020

2 of Nikola Tesla's most improtant inventions

I had the impression that tesla's work on triboelectric generators and levitation of a induction coil were his two most important inventions.  Firstly it appears tesla called triboelectric generators "electro-static" generators.  And here is an article he wrote on it.

https://web.archive.org/web/20200415145134/https://teslauniverse.com/nikola-tesla/articles/possibilities-electro-static-generators

Secondly I couldn't find anything about tesla's work on levitation, perhaps this was unpulished work he was doing that was stolen by the government at his death.

My take on it is this: a pulsing electromagnet will levitate any induction coil (at it's simplest just a copper coil) above it.  This should be on a track to keep the levatated object from flying away (but doesn't have to be if the pulsing electromagnet (in combination with non pulsing or non electromagnets if desired) is designed in a parabolic or U shape to properly contain the car's potential movements.  Tesla might also have been working on wireless power that could effect the copper coiled track-car, but I think a pulsing electromagnet would be the most practical.

Why a magnet and a coil?  Well if you have ever dropped a neodymium magnet through a copper pipe you will know that a moving magnet past a conductor induces a charge in the conductor and will therefore use up some kinetic (gravitational) energy.  So we could place a coil above a magnet and the coil will slowly fall onto the magnet.  However if we move the magnet up with respect to the coil, we could push the coil upwards.  If we vibrate the magnet up and down we might achieve stable levatation of the coil.  In the same way, a pulsing electromagnet is just like a magnet that is vibrating up and down since the magnetic field will contract and expand.

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