Various Tesla book cover images

Nikola Tesla Books

Books written by or about Nikola Tesla
Phot. XVII (?) Experiment to illustrate an inductive effect of an electrical oscillator of great power. The photograph shown is reproduced from Tesla's article(41) in which somewhat different circuit dimensions and position are quoted.


Photograph XVII shows lamps connected into a resonant circuit consisting of one square turn. According to the data Tesla gives, one side of the square was about 1.3 m from the secondary coil of the oscillator. The capacity of the oscillatory circuit consisted of two condensers in parallel. The lamps are paralleled.

Tesla calculates the inductance of the square turn from the formula for the inductance of two parallel conductors, as if there were two such pairs connected in series. The formula for a square coil (Fleming, p. 155),

L = 8l(In $!{d \over r}$! - 0.774)

yields a value 12.6% less than Tesla found. The calculated resonant frequency is therefore somewhat higher than it should be, so that the inductance of the oscillator primary, as Tesla calculates it, is still less. In fact, because of the tight coupling of the secondary the oscillator must have been producing a complex spectrum, probably with its strongest component at the resonant frequency of the oscillatory circuit of the square coil.

one could expect signals to be picked up at distances of a thousand miles or more, even on the Earth's surface. The diary does not mention any measurements at great distances, but in an article(41) he published soon after finishing work at Colorado Springs he states that he observed effects at a distance of about 600 miles.

January 1

On photograph XVII, bulbs are shown connected to the resonant circuit made of one turn rectangular in shape. According to data mentioned the square edge is 1.3 meters away from the oscillator secondary coil. The capacitance of the oscillating circuit consists of two capacitors connected in parallel. The bulbs are connected in parallel. The square turn inductance Tesla calculated according to an equation for two parallel conductors' inductance as those are two parallel conductors pairs connected in series. When the calculation is done as per equation for a square coil (Fleming, p. 155):

L = 81 (ln $! {d \over r} $! - 0.774)

The value obtained is 12.6% smaller than the one found in the notes. The calculated value of a square coil circuit resonant frequency is due to that somewhat higher, and therefore the inductance of the oscillator primary coil calculated as Tesla does it is even smaller. In fact, due to the existence of a very good coupled secondary the oscillator has complicated the oscillating spectrum with probably the strongest component in the frequency of the oscillating circuit with a square coil.

Related to four secondary coil photographs with extensive discharge the remark about energy transmission over a distance is interesting.

Tesla concluded on the basis of comparisons with achieved induction apparatus that the signal registration could be performed at the distance of 1000 or more miles, even over the earth globe surface. There is no data in the notes about measurements over longer distances, and in article(41) written immediately after the finish of the work at Colorado Springs, he says that he observed the effects at a distance of approximately 600 miles.


Lowercase tau - an irrational constant defined as the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its radius, equal to the radian measure of a full turn; approximately 6.283185307 (equal to 2π, or twice the value of π).
A natural rubber material obtained from Palaquium trees, native to South-east Asia. Gutta-percha made possible practical submarine telegraph cables because it was both waterproof and resistant to seawater as well as being thermoplastic. Gutta-percha's use as an electrical insulator was first suggested by Michael Faraday.
The Habirshaw Electric Cable Company, founded in 1886 by William M. Habirshaw in New York City, New York.
The Brown & Sharpe (B & S) Gauge, also known as the American Wire Gauge (AWG), is the American standard for making/ordering metal sheet and wire sizes.
A traditional general-purpose dry cell battery. Invented by the French engineer Georges Leclanché in 1866.
Refers to Manitou Springs, a small town just six miles west of Colorado Springs, and during Tesla's time there, producer of world-renown bottled water from its natural springs.
A French mineral water bottler.
Lowercase delta letter - used to denote: A change in the value of a variable in calculus. A functional derivative in functional calculus. An auxiliary function in calculus, used to rigorously define the limit or continuity of a given function.
America's oldest existing independent manufacturer of wire and cable, founded in 1878.
Lowercase lambda letter which, in physics and engineering, normally represents wavelength.
The lowercase omega letter, which represents angular velocity in physics.