Long Distance Wireless Power Transmission

In summary: Tesla's dream.In summary, this patent is for a device to transmit power wirelessly. It is based on Nikola Tesla's idea of using the Earth as a transmission medium. However, I think it is an extremely improbable idea to transmit power that way for myriad of reasons. The price of energy is quoted in dollars per megajoule, which would require the purchase of the energy before it is transmitted, how will you prevent thieves tapping into the transmission and taking the energy for free, and the concept of wireless power transmission is incompatible with the economy.
  • #1
TL;DR Summary
Long Distance Wireless Power Transmission
Hi Everyone,

I wanted to get the communities take on this. Long distance wireless power transmission. I know that you cannot accomplish this with magnetic fields or with radio waves because the energy falls of with the square of the distance but I have been reading about some unique methods to accomplish this task. One method mentions using the Earth and upper atmosphere and another entertains the idea of using a zenneck wave to accomplish the task. There is actually a company in Texas that his built a rather larger tower, comparable to Teslas Wardenclyffe to generate and transmit these zenneck waves. What do you guys think?

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  • #2
I think it is true that a surface wave falls off as 1/r.
I think it is an extremely improbable idea to transmit power that way for myriad of reasons.
  • #3
The price of energy is quoted in dollars per megajoule.
You must buy the energy before it is transmitted.
How will you prevent thieves tapping into the transmission and taking the energy for free?
To a thief, free energy is exchangable for money.
The concept of wireless power transmission is incompatible with the economy.
  • #4
From what I gather in the additional patents by Viziv they claim to have this figured. I say claimed because I'm not sure how they could accomplish the task.
  • #5
WonderfulWorld said:
Summary:: Long Distance Wireless Power Transmission

I wanted to get the communities take on this.
I'm skeptical about this topic. The topic has a long history of pseudoscience, wild claims and shattered dreams.

If you want a discussion, post some links to peer reviewed papers from reputable sources, plus patent applications, not press releases, not popsci sources. We shouldn't ask members to spend their time discussing without knowledge of specifically what the discussion is about.

If we don't have those links by tomorrow, I'm going to close the thread. Meanwhile, I recommend that we all hold off comments in this thread until we have the links.
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  • #6
I definitely agree with you there that the subject is tainted but I did provide a patent and a website link to a company that has raised millions in venture capital to fund this project. How is that not adequate? I think you missed the third link. Provided with this post is one patent detailing the zenneck wave used to transmit on lossy media AKA the Earth that you can find with the following link. If you type zenneck wave in google patents you will find a lot of patents:


Here is a link on hackaday showing the tower itself:


Zenneck wave Related paper:

  • #7
You're right. I did miss the links. I will take time to study them.
  • #8
When reading the patent; for "probe", read "tower";
for "polyphase waveguide" read "Earth – Ionosphere waveguide".

I see no power transmission line to the site, to provide the energy for transmission. That is consistent with the second claim in the patent; "2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein a radiation resistance of the polyphase waveguide probe is substantially zero." Zero radiation resistance does imply zero voltage, and therefore zero power.

There is also what appears to be an error in claim 13, where it refers to “Tree-space wavelength”. That error cascades along into the following claims.

Tesla got there first, since then it has never been forgotten, indeed it has been published widely.
There is nothing “novel” in this patent. The circuit and probe appears to be a Tesla Coil.

I think this is a “long con”, looking for foolish investors to buy up the shares before it fails.

Or it is cover for an experimental high voltage discharge test site. The site appears to be designed to have two probes, one insulated on the main tower, the other based in the cylindrical second pit.
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  • #9
From the paper you linked:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6976601/ said:
A decade ago, non-radiative wireless power transmission re-emerged as a promising alternative to deliver electrical power to devices where a physical wiring proved impracticable.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zenneck_wave said:
The Zenneck wave, Zenneck surface wave or Sommerfeld-Zenneck surface wave is a longitudinal, inhomogeneous or non-uniform electromagnetic plane wave incident at the complex Brewster's angle onto a planar or spherical boundary interface between two homogeneous media having different dielectric constants.

The paper is directed at tiny devices with a solid interface. Tesla's dream was to power remote cities through the atmosphere. The two ideas are figuratively miles apart.

For small quantities of power, wireless transmission is trivial. I can shine a flashlight on my solar watch.

A microwave oven can transmit larger quantities of power wirelessly, such as to my cup of coffee.

But applications even remotely approaching Tesla's dream -- no.

Since you mentioned Tesla's dream in the OP, this thread is closed.
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