Electric vehicles don't add up

  • #26
mgb_phys
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Tesla was a genius that invented a lot of the electrical technology you use today.
He was also a bit 'eccentric' and rather poorer at PR than Edison so history has been less kind to him.

Make more sense to just run a wire and get near 100% transmission.
It's useful for some applications, were you have to get power into moving equipment or have high potential differences, there are a bunch of problems powering some lab experiments that this would solve - but for general applications it's not going to fly.

You CAN efficiently transmit power over very much shorter distance using induction, so charging ipods/cellphones etc by placing them on a charging pad is practical.
 
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  • #27
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That sums it up well I think.. OK for short distances but inefficient for anything over 1 metre or so.

I you consider a TV or radio transmitter. They shove 10kW or more into an aerial and a total of less than 1 microwatt ends up being picked up by all the viewers or listeners. 99.999999% does not get from A to B.

Not so sure Tesla invented very much. 3 phase AC was patented and first tested out in Britain in 1882 I think.. John Hopkinson before Tesla had even arrived in the USA.



I find the idea that Tesla had a model boat that could steer by radio in about 1896 a bit far fetched when many of the components required to do it didn't exist. It would have been tricky 20 later.



I also think that Marconi's claim that he bridged the Atlantic in 1901 (Cornwall to Newfoundland) on what we now call the AM band (medium wave) to be highly dubious as do many radio engineers. Actually about now 15:15 pm in Britain would be the time Marconi, also in December, claims to have done it. See if you can receive Station VOCM (if you were in Britain....or a British station going the other way) from Newfoundland on 590 kHz with your modern highy sensitive radio. Marconi had a receiver which was very crude and a million times less sensitive.
 
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  • #28
russ_watters
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I haven't seen much evidence that Tesla is a crackpot: what I've seen, rather, is that crackpots have picked up on his more obscure/wilder inventions (and attempted inventions) and let their own imaginations run away with the possibilities of what they may be capable of.

Rest assured, there is no large quantity of electricity to be pulled from the ground or air and wireless transmission of electricity is impractical for large quantities of power and large distances. Radio: yes. Wireless toothbrush charging station: yes. Wireless electric car: no.

Also note that discussions of crackpottery are not allowed here.
 
  • #29
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It is hard to sort out what Tesla did or didn't do or claimed to have done. He certainly does seem to have attracked some strange followers who claim he did some weird things. Just take a look at some websites. It is claimed his papers were burnt by vested interests or a government agency in order to suppress his techology. I don't think many serious scientists/engineers swallow that one.
 
  • #30
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i think Tesla was a genius who was way ahead of his time. even if he did have a few crazy ideas, i don't think it diminishes his accomplishments. that's just par for the course, it happens with lots of brilliant people.

you've also got to consider that Edison hated the guy, and spent money discrediting him. in the end, Tesla's power technology won, but Edison won the public relations war.
 

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