Dr. Nikola Tesla

Dr. Nikola Tesla

  • Position: Electrical engineering / mechanical engineering

Personal experience & biography

He began his schooling in his hometown of Smiljan, where he attended the Krajiška Trivialka, a school where German, arithmetic and religious studies were taught, and then went to Gospić, where he attended the preparatory primary school and the lower secondary school. From Gospić he goes to Rakovac in Karlovac, where he completes the Higher Secondary School. In Graz he enrolled at the Polytechnic School with a Military Frontier scholarship, but after the scholarship was canceled for the purpose of establishing the Military Frontier, Nikola did not finish the second year of study and indulged in cards and gambling to compensate for these financial resources loss, he failed and dropped out before the third year. He worked for a short time in Maribor and after his father's death in 1879. works at the Realna high school in Gospić. In 1880 he tried to enroll in Prague to study, but failed a year later. He started working in Budapest and took part in the construction of the first telephone exchange.

Although I owe my inventiveness to my mother's influence, the exercises my father gave me were very useful. They contained many tasks, such as guessing other people's thoughts, recognizing various errors or expressions, repeating long sentences or doing calculations by heart. These daily exercises were intended to strengthen my memory and reason and, above all, to develop my critical thinking, and they were undoubtedly very useful. My mother came from one of the oldest families in this region, which had an inventive streak. Both her father and grandfather invented many tools for household, farming and other purposes. She was truly a great and extremely capable woman, courageous and steadfast, she weathered the storms of life and gained many experiences from them. […] My mother was a first-class inventor and I think she would have achieved a lot if she had not been so far removed from modern life and its many possibilities. She invented and manufactured many devices. She wove the most beautiful patterns with threads that she spun herself. She even sowed seeds, grew plants, separated fibers. She worked tirelessly, from morning until late at night, and much of the clothing we wore and the furniture we had in the house was the work of her hands. When she was in her sixties, her fingers were still so dexterous that she could tie three knots on an eyelash.

In Paris, Tesla worked for Edison's company (Continental Edison Company) and in 1883. in Strasbourg he constructed the first induction motor model. After his return to Paris, Tesla received a recommendation from Charles Batchellor and went to New York in 1884 and was employed by Edison's company. After a disagreement with Edison in 1885. Tesla founded his own company, Tesla Electric & Manufacturing Company. A year later, his company failed, so he struggled to get by with hard physical work. In 1887, Tesla founded the Tesla Electric Company and filed patents: a polyphase electrical transmission system. Energy, induction motor, generators and transformers. A year later, in 1888, Tesla partnered with George Westinghouse and sold him patents based on alternating current for a million dollars, but he received about $60,000 (as stated in some sources).

1889 Tesla He returns to Europe and visits his hometown of Lika. It is his first visit to Europe since he was in America. In 1890 he began researching high-frequency currents and a year later produced the Tesla coil (transformer). The second visit to Europe took place in 1892. when he buries his mother and then he visits other European cities: London, Paris, Zagreb, Budapest and Belgrade. In 1893, an exhibition dedicated to the achievements of electrical engineering was held in Chicago, where Tesla demonstrated the advantages of alternating energy. It was destroyed in a fire in 1895. a laboratory destroyed in order not to publish the discovery of electrons and X-rays.

The door swings open and in comes Tall Chance, over two meters tall, thin but straight. He approaches slowly and gracefully. Suddenly you realize that you are face to face with an extraordinary person. From his piercing, bright blue-gray, deep-set eyes emerges a captivating smile that hypnotizes you and instantly makes you feel intimate. It takes you to an impeccably furnished office. Not a speck of dust can be seen. There are no scattered papers on the desk, everything is sorted. He wears a long dark coat, he never wears jewelry, no watch chain, no tie ring. Tesla speaks in a very high voice, almost in falsetto. He speaks quickly and very convincingly. It's hard not to look him in the eyes when he speaks. Only when he is talking to someone else do you have the opportunity to closely observe his head, on which you notice a very high and bulging forehead, the most reliable sign of exceptional intelligence. Then a long, regular nose that betrays a scientist. (Hugo Gernsback, Nikola Tesla the man)

In 1896, a hydroelectric power station was commissioned at Niagara Falls, where Tesla's patents based on alternating electrical energy were used. Tesla was the first to develop a remote control, and in 1898 he demonstrated a remote-controlled ship. He continued researching high-frequency and high-voltage currents and in 1899. set up a laboratory in Colorado Springs where he conducted experiments with these currents. In 1900 he began construction of the Long Island Wireless Power Transmission System, which was never completed because J.P. Morgan cut his financial resources so he couldn't finish it. Tesla continued his inventions, so in 1907 he created a turbine without blades, which he tested a year later. From 1910 to 1922 he worked on inventions related to mechanical engineering.

In 1919 Tesla's autobiography “My Inventions” was published. Tesla continues to file patents in various areas, such as a patent for vacuumization, a vertical take-off aircraft, and he is working on improving the production process of sulfur, iron and copper.

In 1917 and 1926 he received the Edison Medal (the highest honor of the American Society of Electrical Engineers). received an honorary doctorate from the University of Zagreb. In 1937 he received honorary doctorates from the Polytechnic School of Graz and the University of Paris. Tesla lived a lot in hotels, where he died. He died on January 7th. 1943 in New York in the New Yorker Hotel on the 33rd floor in Suite 3327 at the age of 86.

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