# Nikola Tesla

By on

Nikola Tesla was born exactly at midnight on July 10, 1856 in the tiny village of Smiljan, Lika in Croatia. In his late teens, Tesla left the village to pursue a career in electrical engineering. He started attending the Austrian Polytechnic in Graz, but never graduated and cut off all ties with his friends and family shortly after the start of his third year. He disappeared for awhile and suffered a nervous breakdown before being found and convinced by his father to attend Charles-Ferdinand University in Prague. However, he stayed for only one term, leaving after his father died.

After working for a telegraph company in Budapest, Tesla made his way to France in 1882. There he developed one of his greatest discoveries, using the rotating magnetic field forming the basis for alternating current (AC) machinery.  He built the first induction motor, which more than a hundred years later is still the preferred type of motor for industrial use.

In 1884 he moved on to the United States to work for Thomas Edison. Tesla worked hard to redesign Edison's motors, developing several important patents for the company before quitting over a salary dispute when Edison refused to raise his salary from $18 per week to$25. Tesla and Edison would remain enemies for the rest of their lives.

Tesla's next step was to begin work on X-rays using single vacuum tubes. He also created machines testing mechanical resonance, inducing sleep, bladeless turbine engines, cordless gas lamps, the first spark plugs, the first ever radio transmitter (though the patent was later given to Marconi), and wireless electromagnetic energy transmitters. He was considered for the Nobel Prize on several occasions.

Tesla was the classical mad scientist. He was seen by his contemporaries as a man who believed in things that couldn't be done. Tesla died of heart failure in early January 1943 at the age of 86.

More interesting Notes:

Steven has over twenty five years experience working on some of the largest construction projects. He has a deep technical understanding of electrical engineering and is keen to share this knowledge. About the author

myElectrical Engineering

IEEE Winds of Change

IEEE TV has a part series of videos on wind power and it's implication. For a really good overview to the technologies and issues around wind power, these...

Switchboard - Forms of Internal Separation

IEC 61439 'Low-voltage switchgear and controlgear assemblies', specifies standard arrangements of switchboard (call forms of internal separation). The...

How to measure power supply quality

If your are ever called out to troubleshoot something on your electrical system, one of the first things consider is the supply voltage. You want to ensure...

8 Steps to Low Voltage Power Cable Selection and Sizing

A recurring theme on our forums is cable sizing. Now many installations are unique and require special consideration. However, a lot of the time things...

IEC 60287 Current Capacity of Cables - Rated Current

In the previous note we looked at the approach taken by the standard to the sizing of cables and illustrated this with an example.  We then looked at one...

What is an Open Delta Transformer

In three phase systems, the use of transformers with three windings (or legs) per side is common.  These three windings are often connected in delta or...

Nikola Tesla

Nikola Tesla was born exactly at midnight on July 10, 1856 in the tiny village of Smiljan, Lika in Croatia. In his late teens, Tesla left the village to...

Understanding LV Circuit Breaker Fault Ratings

I think this post is going to be helpful to several of our readers. While the IEC low voltage circuit breaker Standard [IEC 60947-2, Low voltage switchgear...

Standard Cable & Wire Sizes

IEC 60228 is the International Electrotechnical Commission's international standard on conductors of insulated cables. Among other things, it defines a...

Power Transformers - An Introduction

One of the fundamental requirements of an alternating current distribution systems it to have the ability to change the magnitude of voltages.  It is more...

## Have some knowledge to share

If you have some expert knowledge or experience, why not consider sharing this with our community.

By writing an electrical note, you will be educating our users and at the same time promoting your expertise within the engineering community.

To get started and understand our policy, you can read our How to Write an Electrical Note