Nikola Tesla, the archetypical ‘Mad Scientist,’ is a testament to the art of turning imagination into reality. It would be an understatement to say that Tesla was ahead of his time. He had the vision of a science fiction author but possessed the skills to transform stories into reality. With such a potent combination, it would not be surprising to see many of his inventions at work in day-to-day life. He may have never received the recognition of his chief rival Thomas Edison, but the impact made by his work is profound.
One of the more well-known inventions of Tesla is the Alternating Current that we use to power many electrical appliances. As a household commodity, AC has shaped our lives by making amenities, which were once luxuries, accessible to the common folk. Most of our home appliances work on this concept including lights, fans, kitchen appliances, etc. Though our computers work on DC (direct current), the power supplied to the SMPS (switch-mode power supply), or the battery is from the AC mains. Even the methods used to transfer the power are a product of Tesla’s mind.
3-Phase Power & Induction Motor
The Three Phase Power, which a lot of houses receive, was conceived by Tesla. It does not end there. One of the most common electrical moving components is the AC Induction Motor. It was also the brainchild of the Serbian-American inventor. This motor makes fans work along with kitchen appliances like blenders. In fact, any device connected to the mains, which has a motor inside of it, is probably an AC induction motor.
Tesla’s inventions have penetrated so deep into the civilisation that we do not give them a second thought. Another innovation that is the basis of many modern technologies is the Remote Control system. Tesla invented it to not only control but also transmit power wirelessly to a model boat, which he could control from a distance.
Neon Lamps were one of the man’s inventions. While fluorescent and neon lights weren’t discovered by Tesla, he was responsible for many contributions to the advancement of both. He is also credited, though disputable, for the invention of the Radio. To be more precise, he devised a way to communicate wirelessly through electromagnetic waves.
One of his more prolific inventions never made it to the public spotlight. Tesla wanted to transfer power without wires and thought it was possible only at a higher altitude. So, he built the most powerful Tesla Coil, called the Magnifying Transmitter, which generated millions of volts of electricity and shot lightning bolts. This particular invention didn’t pan out as expected as it was too ambitious for that era. An exaggerated version of this invention of Nikola Tesla was featured in the movie Prestige.
His long-abandoned Long Island laboratory is all set to become a museum now. A non-profit organisation has purchased it and plans to turn it into a Tesla museum and science education centre.
Nikola Tesla is indeed one of the greatest minds to have ever walked on the face of the Earth. He has managed to touch our lives every day without us even realising it.
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