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Why Not Wardenclyffe Tower?

  1. Feb 19, 2007 #1
    Is There Any Reason Why Tesla's Wardenclyffe Tower Wouldn't Work?

    All the sources I've seen on his work and inventions give the impression of him being a great inventor but his greatest works being denied because of politics and economics. Are there any Physics based reasons why his faciliate at Wardenclyffe Tower would not radiate energy, with minimal loss, over huge distances?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 19, 2007 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    It's the "minimal loss" part that's the problem. You can't radiate energy in all directions then expect to receive it with minimal loss.

    Besides, we already have radio. This is basically just a large radio antenna.
  4. Feb 19, 2007 #3

    His designs were reported to be able to reach excellent efficiencies over large distances because of the fact the energy from these EM waves only transfered to something resonating at the same frequency. The energy is 'tunnelled' by flux linkage*. Its like a carrier wave that takes power across when connected to a receiving unit.

    The fact it works so well omnidirectionally is why it was such a fantastic idea.

    And radio is signal energy, Tesla's ultimate plan was to use Wardenclyffe Tower to transmit power; the kind of requirements that could meet industries and homes alike. His intended to have many of these towers dotted around America so that it could be powered wireless. Instead of the current, barbaric grid system.

    *that isn't actually true. Its not flux linkage, but it is a method which has a similar effect.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2007
  5. Feb 19, 2007 #4
    and how did he actually build a device to create this "flux linkage"? (or whatever your trying to call it)

    if you look at the physics behind power transmisssion, you need a loop of wire to contain a changing flux and thus suck power off of the wave. However the sorce has already emitted the energy, and if something doesn't stand in the way of the ray then the power just gets wasted as it drifts out into space.
  6. Feb 19, 2007 #5


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    Staff: Mentor

    Pinks, if you read Tesla's own words on the subject, you'll see it's just a big radio tower.


    Radio towers do transmit power wirelessly - that's how a radio works. Yes, he was right about a lot of his ideas for improving transmission, but still, a radio station loses virtually all of its energy in the transmission. What is actually received by the listeners is miliwatts apiece (if that), while the transmitter is putting out kilowatts.

    And if you read the description about devices that can receives power from this, you'll see that they are just crystal radios: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crystal_radio
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2007
  7. Feb 19, 2007 #6
    I'm thinking the most efficient "flux linkage" would be a copper cable. :smile:
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