From the June 2005 Idaho Observer:
Crisis, What Crisis? The possibilities of abundent energy and sustainable living
by Hari Heath
It has been said that America is at a crossroads. We have a looming energy crisis, which may forever alter the way we live our lives. Our oil gluttony has reached its peak, according to some, and the electrical grids that power our modern conveniences are reaching the limits of their source points. This is being exacerbated by the developing world’s desire to live according to the same consumptive standards we have grown accustomed to and the seeming need to maintain a state of perpetual war to procure access to our desired resources, especially energy sources.
But to paraphrase an old Chinese proverb, crisis is not always a pending catastrophe; it can be transformed into an opportunity.
Ever since John D. Rockefeller began to build his oil empire on the tails of the Civil War, the world began to be chained to a new slave master—the petro-industrial complex. We may be on the verge of humanity’s opportunity to break the chains forged by the petro-industrialists.
Alternatives abound, but many of them have long been suppressed. The purveyors of centralized power systems have a long history of intimidation, suppression, destruction of facilities, financial devastation and even murder, to prevent the development of alternatives to their power complex. Many of the opportunities to resolve our energy dilemma are not new. They have faded into obscurity and are awaiting new inventors to bring them to fruition.
The primary culprits in our current crisis are our petroleum powered transportation devices and the 60 hertz AC power that runs most of America’s homes, businesses and industry. These near monopolies have made the few at the top absurdly wealthy, while the rest of humanity has developed a dependency on their products that is not much different than drug addiction.
Can we live without the automobile, the semi-truck and the myriad of devices that we routinely plug into our walls? And what are we willing to do to maintain our access to all the goodies in modern life? If deprived of such modern wonders, would most Americans behave much like a junkie in need of a fix?
Our crisis presents the opportunity to either maintain our addictions and go into greater bondage with the current energy suppliers or move on to the alternatives.
It begins with Tesla
Few people realize how much of a contribution one man made to our current state of technology. Those who have written the history books have written Nicola Tesla into obscurity. Who invented the AC electricity that makes your toaster, your stereo, the street lights, the factories and offices work? Not Thomas Edison. Tesla was initially employed by Edison, but when Edison reneged on a payment agreement Tesla quit. Tesla later competed with and defeated Edison in a challenge to bring the first commercially generated power from Niagara Falls to Buffalo New York. Tesla’s alternating current was safer and more suited to long distance transmission. It continues to be our primary form of electrical power. Edison’s direct current has largely been relegated to use in automotive circuits and portable devices.
Many believe Marconi invented the radio, but it was in fact Tesla who developed it, as the U. S. Supreme Court ruled in 1943.
Tesla appears to have discovered x-rays a year before W. K. Roentgen did in Germany; he built a vacuum tube amplifier several years before Lee de Forest did; he was using fluorescent lights in his laboratory 40 years before the industry "invented" them and; he demonstrated the principles used in microwave ovens and radar decades before they became an integral part of our society. Yet we associate his name with none of them.
Tesla was born in Smiljan, Croatia in 1856, the son of a clergyman and an inventive mother. He had an extraordinary memory, one that made learning six languages easy for him. He entered the Polytechnic School at Gratz, where for four years he studied mathematics, physics and mechanics, confounding more than one professor by an understanding of electricity, an infant science in those days, that was greater than theirs. His practical career started in 1881 in Budapest, Hungary, where he made his first electrical invention, a telephone repeater (the ordinary loudspeaker) and conceived the idea of a rotating magnetic field, which is the basis of the modern induction motor. The polyphase induction motor is what provides power to virtually every industrial application.
Not only did Tesla have a photographic memory, he was able to use creative visualization with an uncanny and practical intensity. He describes in his autobiography how he was able to visualize a particular apparatus and was then able to actually test run the apparatus, disassemble it and check for proper action and wear! During the manufacturing phase of his inventions, he would work with all blueprints and specifications in his head. The invention invariably assembled together without redesign and worked perfectly. Tesla slept one to 2 hours a day and worked continuously on his inventions and theories without benefit of ordinary relaxation or vacations. He could judge the dimension of an object to a hundredth of an inch and perform difficult computations in his head without benefit of a slide rule or mathematical tables.
Tesla, in 1898, described the transmission of not only the human voice, but images as well and later designed and patented devices that evolved into the power supplies that operate our present day TV picture tubes. The first primitive radar installations in 1934 were built following principles, mainly regarding frequency and power level, that were stated by Tesla in 1917.
In 1889 Tesla constructed an experimental station in Colorado Springs where he studied the characteristics of high frequency or radio frequency alternating currents. While there he developed a powerful radio transmitter of unique design and also a number of receivers "for individualizing and isolating the energy transmitted". He conducted experiments designed to establish the laws of radio propagation, which are currently being "rediscovered" and verified amid some controversy in high energy quantum physics.
Tesla wrote in Century Magazine in 1900: "...that communication without wires to any point of the globe is practicable. My experiments showed that the air under ordinary pressure became distinctly conducting, and this opened up the wonderful prospect of transmitting large amounts of electrical energy for industrial purposes to great distances without wires...its practical consummation would mean that energy would be available for the uses of man at any point of the globe. I can conceive of no technical advance which would tend to unite the various elements of humanity more effectively than this one, or of one which would more add to and more economize human energy..." This was written in 1900! After finishing preliminary testing, work began on a full sized broadcasting station at Shoreham, Long Island. Had it gone into operation, it would have been able to provide usable amounts of electrical power at the receiving circuits. After construction of a generator building and a 180 foot broadcasting tower, financial support for the project was suddenly withdrawn by J. P. Morgan when it became apparent that such a worldwide power project couldn’t be metered and charged for.
Tesla was also the inventor of the induction coil, that currently provides the spark for gasoline engines. The transformer on the power pole that feeds usable voltages to your house also operates on Tesla’s induction principle.
Nikola Tesla also designed and built prototypes of a unique fuel burning rotary engine based upon his earlier design for a rotary pump. Recent tests that have been carried out on the Tesla bladeless disk turbine indicate that, if constructed using newly developed high temperature ceramic materials, it will rank as the world’s most efficient gas engine, out-performing our present day piston type internal combustion engines in fuel efficiency, longevity, adaptability to different fuels, cost and power to weight ratio.
Tesla’s generosity eventually left him without adequate funds to pursue and realize his inventions. His New York laboratory was destroyed by a mysterious fire in 1895.
His idealism and humanism left him with little stomach for the world of industrial and financial intrigue. He lived in hermetic obscurity between the two world wars after his funding was cut off. The power elite’s connections at the patent office made patenting his newer inventions very difficult. Twenty years of his potentially rich and productive contribution to humanity were taken from us by the petro-industrial elite.
Tesla died in 1943 from complications resulting from being struck by a car while taking a walk. The day after he died, the laboratory where he lived burned down and was promptly bulldozed without any attempt to recover any of his life’s work.
Tesla held over 1200 patents. But many of his inventions have not been successfully utilized for the benefit of humanity. This is where you, dear reader, can take the initiative and seize the current opportunity to break free of our current addiction to the petro-industrialists’ power centralized technologies.
Tesla’s unrealized or under utilized inventions include his bladeless turbine/pump (U.S. Patent number 1,061,206), the wireless transmission of power, an anti-gravity airship, whatever device he used to power a 1931 Pierce Arrow converted to an electric drive system without any storage batteries and his 1927 Vertical Take Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft design. When the rest of the world considered the biplane a modern aircraft, Tesla was already at work developing a propulsion system for spacecraft.
Many of Tesla’s inventions were peripheral to his primary life’s work:
"Tesla’s original vision, in his 1870’s student days, of his "ideal flying machine", was of an electropulsive one, the realization of which is why he said he originally entered the field of electrical science in 1875. This was the problem which he had assigned to himself as his main lifelong work" (Frank Parker Stockbridge, The Tesla Turbine, The World’s Work, March, 1912, pp. 543-48).
His electropulsive flying machine concept was more of a flying saucer type craft than what is now considered a conventional aircraft with wings and control surfaces—and remember, Tesla conceived of this before the Wright brothers first powered flight. His quest for the components for this flying craft led to many of his other inventions, as William Lyne explained in Occult Ether Physics: Tesla’s hidden space propulsion system and the conspiracy to conceal it:
"Originally anticipating that the electrical power needs for an electropropulsive craft would be too great for an on-board power plant, he initially embarked on developing his "wireless transmission of power" system, so as to transmit the anticipated power needed from ground-based power generators and stations. Some of these earlier Tesla ideas turned out to be unnecessary for his flying machine, so he turned them into commercial purposes. Since his conception of the ether was of a relatively low-density one, and his conception of the electromagnetic force not nearly so much stronger than the gravitational one, his later discovery that his prior anticipation of greater electrical power needs than actually required, led to changes in his electropropulsive craft, and produced plenty of surplus "spin-off" technology.
"During the 1920’s, at a time when he was in great need of money to complete his electropropulsive ship, he unsuccessfully attempted to interest the U.S. government in some of this surplus "spin off" technology. Tesla had piles of patents which produced him no money, because the Morgans and Rockefellers had declared them off limits. No one could borrow money from the banks to put one of these systems into practice, and anyone who was foolish enough to do so on their own money could expect the wrath of the gods to come down on them like lightening bolts from Zeus.
Due to his imminent discovery that his on-board power needs would not be so great, and a failure to interest anyone in the development of his wireless energy transmission system, Tesla obtained a patent, in 1913, on a remarkable turbine he had invented about 1909. This was probably in view of encouraging developments and awareness, which showed that the electromagnetic interaction is 1040 times stronger than the gravitational interaction.
"The change in Tesla’s strategy seems to have occurred between his 1915 test of an electropropulsive missile using wireless energy projected to it by a power beam from the ground, and his 1934 birthday announcement. These new developments were probably spurred on by the mother of invention—since without a wireless energy system, the flying machine would be rather useless. The power monopolists could fight that off forever, so Tesla was left to his own devices, unable to count on anyone else.
"The earlier misconceptions were still somewhat in Tesla’s mind when he developed the turbine commercially under the Tesla Propulsion Company slogan, ‘20 Horsepower Per Pound,’ with the undisclosed intention of also using the turbine to drive one of his specially designed high frequency alternators to power the ship. After having developed such a light and powerful turbine, which could turn upwards of 30,000 rpm. With a twenty pound unit producing over 200 brake horsepower on gasoline, he also designed and received a patent in 1928 for a new kind of "VTOL"-type propeller-driven airplane, to be powered by two turbines mounted in tandem, which would counteract the torque of the prop, and eliminate the need for the stabilizing props that modern helicopters have on their back fuselages. This aircraft, if built, would have had a superior weight-to-horsepower ratio—perhaps three-to-one—and would have been very fast in level flight, taking off vertically.
"Tesla, on seeing the inefficient use of heavier aircraft engines then in use, and the requirements of more cumbersome aircraft with greater wing area, apparently wished to commercialize on the turbine by designing and patenting the new airplane, which specifically used his turbine, to raise needed capital to complete his more expensive electropropulsive project. In his experiences with prior patents, he had learned that a patent would be worthless unless he could get the needed capital to carry the project out before the patent period expired, and that the disclosure in a patent would allow others to do so only 17 years after a patent might be granted to him, during which time his invention could languish for lack of funding on his part, because the monolithic financial interests were set against him.
"While in the initial stages of development, Tesla seemed quite unaware of the true power of ‘the force,’ until his early field tests of 1915 proved that it was tremendous. In the years 1893 and 1894, Tesla had ‘completely worked out’ his Dynamic Theory of Gravity, that is, at least in ‘theory.’ Inherent to that theory, was his electropropulsion system, still in the formative and theoretical stages. To publish his theory however, would have been tantamount to disclosing the basic technology as well, which would have allowed his competitors with the money and resources, to complete and take credit for the most important work of Tesla’s life, and the greatest invention of mankind. Tesla lacked the necessary money, and could not raise it. He could not protect himself by patent, until he completed and tested a working model of large enough scale to impress the aircraft industry and the government. Fatefully, it was during this time of greatest financial need, when he still had the physical stamina to carry the project out, that he was run ragged by bill collections and foreclosures, at the behest of J.P. Morgan and his cohorts, all with the intent of crushing Tesla because he kept coming up with new electric power systems. Since the systems would have ruined Morgan and Rockefeller, and since any invention which Tesla marketed for great profit would have allowed him the resources to build his energy systems, he had to be crushed.
"After becoming aware of the true power of ‘the force’—one hundred billion thousand trillion thousand trillion times stronger than gravity—Tesla began to pursue the idea of an "on-board" power system for a manned craft. After a long period of silence following his field testing of a working model of the electrically propelled missile in 1915, Tesla began referring to the propelling force as ‘tremendous’ in his later announcements, in the ‘30’s. ‘Tremendous’ does not mean something which reacts feebly, to barely get off the ground, but to something which rises with great and astounding force.
"The words ‘means of propulsion’, used by Tesla in his 1940 interview with William L. Laurence of the New York Times, are of the utmost importance for those interested in understanding Tesla’s ‘flying machine,’ since his machine was to have no wings, ailerons, propellers, or outer appurtenances of any kind. ‘Propulsion’ here means an on-board system for perpetuation of motion, by electromagnetic means, supplied with electrical power by either on-board generator, or by electrical energy transmitted by power beam from the ground. The idea of interplanetary travel appealed to Tesla, with the idea that, so long as the electrical energy for propulsion could be transmitted from the earth, a space ship would require no fuel tanks.
"In a letter to his friend and financial supporter B.A. Behrend in the 1930’s, Tesla referred cryptically to his electropropulsive discovery: ‘What I shall accomplish by that other invention I came specially to see you about, I do not dare to tell you. This is stated in all seriousness.’ Tesla apparently was inferring a plan to discover ‘other worlds’- in outer space with his electrical machines.
"Tesla realized that all solid bodies contain ‘electrical content,’ and that they behave as resonant cavities, which interact electromagnetically with rapidly varying electrostatic forces and ‘aether’ to determine their gravitational interactions and movements in space. These theories were tested and confirmed to some degree in his 1899 Colorado Springs’ experiments."
90 MPH in 1931 without
gas or batteries
Tesla’s discovery of the aetheric power or "ether" was also put to use in a more earthbound application. Tesla’s nephew, Mr. Savo, reported on a trip he took to Buffalo, New York with his uncle to Derek Ahlers, an aeronautical engineer and a trained aviator. Mr. Savo reported that in 1931, he participated in an experiment involving aetheric power. Unexpectedly, he was asked to accompany his uncle on a long train ride to Buffalo. A few times in this journey, Mr. Savo asked the nature of their journey. Dr. Tesla remained unwilling to disclose any information.
Taken into a small garage, Dr. Tesla walked directly to a Pierce Arrow, opened the hood and began making a few adjustments. In place of the engine, there was an AC motor. This measured a little more than 3 feet long, and a little more than 2 feet in diameter. From it trailed two very thick cables which connected with the dashboard. In addition, there was an ordinary 12 volt storage battery. The motor was rated at 80 horsepower and 1800 RPM. A 6 foot antenna rod was fitted into the rear section of the car.
Dr. Tesla stepped into the passenger side and began making adjustments on a "power receiver" which was built directly into the dashboard. The receiver used 12 special tubes which Dr. Tesla brought with him in a boxlike case. The device had been prefitted into the dashboard and was no larger than a short-wave receiver.
Mr. Savo told Mr. Ahler that Dr. Tesla built the receiver in his hotel room, a device 2 feet in length, nearly 1 foot wide, a 1/2 foot high. These curiously constructed tubes having been properly installed in their sockets, Dr. Tesla pushed in two contact rods and informed his nephew that power was now available to drive.
Several additional meters read values which Dr. Tesla would not explain. No sound was heard. Dr. Tesla handed Mr. Savo the ignition key and told him to start the engine, which he promptly did. Yet hearing nothing, the accelerator was applied, and the car instantly moved. Tesla’s nephew drove this vehicle without other fuel for an undetermined long interval.
Mr. Savo drove a distance of 50 miles through the city and out to the surrounding countryside. The car was tested to speeds of 90 mph.
After a time, and with increasing distance from the city itself, Dr. Tesla felt free enough to speak, having now become sufficiently impressed with the performance of both his device and the automobile.
Dr. Tesla informed his nephew that the device could not only supply the needs of the car forever, but could also supply the needs of a household -- with power to spare. When originally asked how the device worked, Tesla was initially adamant and refused to speak. He had obviously succeeded in performing, with this small and compact device, what he had learned in Colorado and Shoreham.
As soon as they were on the country roads, clear of the more congested areas, Tesla began to lecture on the subject. Of the motive source he referred to "a mysterious radiation, which comes out of the aether". The small device very obviously and effectively appropriated this energy.
Tesla also spoke very glowingly of this providence, saying of the energy itself that "it is available in limitless quantities". Dr. Tesla stated that, although "he did not know where it came from, mankind should be very grateful for its presence."
The two remained in Buffalo for 8 days, rigorously testing the car in the city and countryside. Dr. Tesla also told Mr. Savo that the device would soon be used to drive boats, planes, trains, and other automobiles. They left Buffalo and traveled to a predetermined location which Dr. Tesla knew, an old farmhouse barn some 20 miles from Buffalo. Dr. Tesla and Mr. Savo left the car in this barn, took the 12 tubes and the ignition key, and departed.
Later on, Mr. Savo heard a rumor that a secretary had spoken candidly about both the receiver and the test run and was promptly fired for the security breach.
Afterwards, Mr. Savo asked his uncle whether or not the power receiver was being used in other applications. He was informed that Dr. Tesla had been negotiating with a major shipbuilding company to build a boat with a similarly outfitted engine. Asked additional questions, Dr. Tesla became annoyed. Highly concerned and personally strained over the security of this design, it seems obvious that Tesla was performing these tests in a desperate degree of secrecy for good reasons. Tesla had already been the victim of several manipulations, deadly actions entirely sourced in a single financial house. For this reason, secrecy and care had become his only recent excess.
The Tesla Engine Builders Association Inc. (TEBA) website (http://www.execpc.com/~teba) comments "many are aware that Tesla revolutionized the world with his polyphase AC power system, which continues to be the standard to this day . Most are not aware, however, that we are only using half of Tesla’s power concept."
— The new Toyota hybrid Prius, despite being 330 pounds heavier than the conventional car it replaces, has achieved over 60 miles per gallon. Many other auto manufacturers are preparing to enter the hybrid vehicle market. Hybrid vehicles were first proposed by Tesla in 1900. But a most impressive invention of Mr. Tesla, now almost a century old, has failed to be utilized—the Tesla turbine.
TEBA is dedicated to the effective construction and application of this Tesla prime mover. The following excerpt on this invention comes from the New York Herald Tribune Oct. 15, 1911:
"Suppose some one should discover a new mechanical principle—something as fundamental as James Watt’s discovery of the expansive power of steam—by the use of which it became possible to build a motor that would give ten horse power for every pound of the engine’s weight, a motor so simple that the novice in mechanics could construct it and so elemental that it could not possibly get out of repair. Then suppose that this motor could be run forward or backward at will, that it could be used as either an engine or a pump, that it cost almost nothing to build as compared with any other known form of engine, that it utilized a larger percentage of the available power than any existing machine, and, finally, that it would operate with gas, steam, compressed air or water, any one of them, as its driving power.
The first announcement of the discovery of his new mechanical principle was made in a technical periodical in mid-September, 1911. Immediately it became the principal topic of discussions wherever engineers met.
Looking out over the city from the windows of his office, on the twentieth floor of the Metropolitan Tower, his face lit up as he told of his life dream and its approaching realization, and the listener’s fancy could almost see the air full of strange flying craft, while huge steamships propelled at unheard of speeds ploughed the waters of the North River, automobiles climbed the very face of the Palisades, locomotives of incredible power whisked wheeled palaces many miles a minute and all the discomforts of summer heat vanished as marvelous refrigerating plants reduced the temperature of the whole city to a comfortable maximum—for these were only a few of the suggestions of the limitless possibilities of the latest Tesla discovery.
"Just what is your new invention?" I asked.
"I have accomplished what mechanical engineers have been dreaming about ever since the invention of steam power," replied Dr. Tesla. "That is the perfect rotary engine. It happens that I have also produced an engine which will give at least twenty-five times as much power to a pound of weight as the lightest weight engine of any kind that has yet been produced.
"In doing this I have made use of two properties which have always been known to be possessed by all fluids, but which have not heretofore been utilized. These properties are adhesion and viscosity.
"Put a drop of water on a metal plate. The drop will roll off, but a certain amount of the water will remain on the plate until it evaporates or is removed by some absorptive means. The metal does not absorb any of the water, but the water adheres to it.
"The drop of water may change its shape, but until its particles are separated by some external power it remains intact. This tendency of all fluids to resist molecular separation is viscosity. It is especially noticeable in the heavier oils.
"It is these properties of adhesion and viscosity that cause the "skin friction" that impedes a ship in its progress through the water or an aeroplane in going through the air. All fluids have these qualities—and you must keep in mind that air is a fluid, all gases are fluids, steam is fluid. Every known means of transmitting or developing mechanical power is through a fluid medium.
"Now, suppose we make this metal plate that I have spoken of circular in shape and mount it at its centre on a shaft so that it can be revolved. Apply power to rotate the shaft and what happens? Why, whatever fluid the disk happens to be revolving in is agitated and dragged along in the direction of rotation, because the fluid tends to adhere to the disk and the viscosity causes the motion given to the adhering particles of the fluid to be transmitted to the whole mass. Here, I can show you better than tell you."
Dr. Tesla led the way into an adjoining room. On a desk was a small electric motor and mounted on the shaft were half a dozen flat disks, separated by perhaps a sixteenth of an inch from one another, each disk being less than that in thickness. He turned a switch and the motor began to buzz. A wave of cool air was immediately felt.
"There we have a disk, or rather a series of disks, revolving in a fluid—the air," said the inventor. "You need no proof to tell you that the air is being agitated and propelled violently. If you will hold your hand over the centre of these disks—you see the centres have been cut away—you will feel the suction as air is drawn in to be expelled from the peripheries of the disks.
"Now, suppose these revolving disks were enclosed in an air tight case, so constructed that the air could enter only at one point and be expelled only at another—what would we have?"
"You’d have an air pump," I suggested.
"Exactly—an air pump or blower," said Dr. Tesla.
"There is one now in operation delivering ten thousand cubic feet of air a minute. "Now, come over here." At one side of the room was what appeared to be a zinc or aluminum tank, divided into two sections, one above the other, while a pipe that ran along the wall above the upper division of the tank was connected with a little aluminum case about the size and shape of a small alarm clock. A tiny electric motor was attached to a shaft that protruded from one side of the aluminum case. The lower division of the tank was filled with water.
"Inside of this aluminum case are several disks mounted on a shaft and immersed water," said Dr. Tesla. "From this lower tank the water has free access to the case enclosing the disks. This pipe leads from the periphery of the case. I turn the current on, the motor turns the disks and as I open this valve in the pipe the water flows."
He turned the valve and the water certainly did flow. Instantly a stream that would have filled a barrel in a very few minutes began to run out of the pipe into the upper part of the tank and thence into the lower tank.
"This is only a toy," said Dr. Tesla. "There are only half a dozen disks— ‘runners,’ I call them—each less than three inches in diameter, inside of that case. They are just like the disks you saw on the first motor—no vanes, blades or attachments of any kind. Just perfectly smooth, flat disks revolving in their own planes and pumping water because of the viscosity and adhesion of the fluid. One such pump now in operation, with eight disks, eighteen inches in diameter, pumps four thousand gallons a minute to a height of 360 feet.".
"Suppose now we reversed the operation," continued the inventor. "You have seen the disks acting as a pump. Suppose we had water, or air under pressure, or steam under pressure, or gas under pressure, and let it run into the case in which the disks are contained—what would happen?"
"The disks would revolve and any machinery attached to the shaft would be operated—you would convert the pump into an engine," I suggested.
"That is exactly what would happen—what does happen," replied Dr. Tesla. "It is an engine that does all that engineers have ever dreamed of an engine doing, and more. Down at the Waterside power station of the New York Edison Company, through their courtesy, I have had a number of such engines in operation. In one of them the disks are only nine inches in diameter and the whole working part is two inches thick. With steam as the propulsive fluid it develops 110-horse power, and could do twice as much."
"You have got what Professor Langley was trying to evolve for his flying machine—an engine that will give a horse power for a pound of weight," I suggested.
I have got more than that," replied Dr. Tesla. "I have an engine that will give ten horse power to the pound of weight. That is twenty-five times as powerful as the lightest weight engine in use today. The lightest gas engine used on aeroplanes weighs two and one-half pounds to the horse power. With two and one-half pounds of weight I can develop twenty-five horse power."
"That means the solution of the problem of flying," I suggested.
"Yes, and many more," was the reply. "The applications of this principle, both for imparting power to fluids, as in pumps, and for deriving power from fluids, as in turbine, are boundless. It costs almost nothing to make, there is nothing about it to get out of order, it is reversible—simply have two ports for the gas or steam, to enter by, one on each side, and let it into one side or other. There are no blades or vanes to get out of order—the steam turbine is a delicate thing."
"Then, too," Dr. Tesla went on, "there are no delicate adjustments to be made. The distance between the disks is not a matter of microscopic accuracy and there is no necessity for minute clearances between the disks and the case. All one needs is some disks mounted on a shaft, spaced a little distance apart and cased so that a fluid can enter at one point and go out at another. If the fluid enters at the centre and goes out at the periphery it is a pump. If it enters at the periphery and goes out at the center it is a motor.
"Coupling these engines in series, one can do away with gearing in machinery. Factories can be equipped without shafting. The motor is especially adapted to automobiles, for it will run on gas explosions as well as on steam. The gas or steam can be let into a dozen ports all around the rim of the case if desired. It is possible to run it as a gas engine with a continuous flow of gas, gasoline and air being mixed and the continuous combustion causing expansion and pressure to operate the motor. The expansive power of steam, as well as its propulsive power, can be utilized as in a turbine or a reciprocating engine. By permitting the propelling fluid to move along the lines of least resistance a considerably larger proportion of the available power is utilized.
"As an air compressor it is highly efficient. There is a large engine of this type now in practical operation as an air compressor and giving remarkable service. Refrigeration on a scale hitherto never attempted will be practical, through the use of this engine in compressing air, and the manufacture of liquid air commercially is now entirely feasible. "With a thousand horse power engine, weighing only one hundred pounds, imagine the possibilities in automobiles, locomotives and steamships."
Commercially available Tesla type pumps have revolutionized the pumping of difficult fluids and have been documented to achieve higher pumping efficiencies than conventional bladed type pumps when operated using high viscosity fluids. This, despite the fact that efficiency has been compromised in these commercial pumps via a drastic increase in disk spacing and elimination of the central pumping geometry, thereby allowing the passage of large solids. Texaco documented in 1986, with the Tesla type pumps commercially available, a savings of $68,000 per year, per pump, in comparison to the conventional bladed type they had replaced.
The real benefit for the experimenter, and why the Tesla Engine Builders Association (TEBA) has been possible, is literally Professor Rice’s final word on the subject in his 1991 presentation: "It is the ONLY type of turbomachinery that can be easily constructed in a relatively primitive machine shop."
There are a few experimenters who have successfully built Tesla turbines, but to date there are no commercial offerings of conversion units for automotive or other uses. They would be an ideal compliment to current hybrid technology.
The efficiency of the Tesla gas turbine is estimated at 60 to 95 percent compared to piston engines which only reach a 20 to 25 percent efficient conversion of the energy in gas to useable power. Under these estimated efficiency rates a current "economy" car with a 30 MPG piston engine could be converted and realize 100 MPG plus fuel economy with over half its engine compartment empty. More than 100 HP has been produced from Tesla turbines taking up about one cubic foot of space and having only one moving part—the assembled runner.
Since the 1930’s, many high mileage carburetion systems have come and gone. There are many reports of individual inventors running converted automobiles with 50 to 200 MPG efficiency. Some also reported power increases as well. But no such creatures are available at the dealer’s showroom today.
There is at least an equal amount of products and devices that promise high efficiency but fail to deliver. Some are poorly engineered, a few may even be a fraud and ultimately the problem may be in the gas itself.
The function of a carburetor is to regulate the fuel to air mixture ratio at various throttle settings and the overall amount of mixture delivered to the engine. Gas in its liquid form won’t burn. Only vapors can be mixed and burned. The problem with gas is, that as a complex molecular structure, its different components burn at different rates and boil or vaporize at temperatures between 130 to 430 degrees F, leaving some of the fuel unburned or at least not contributing to the percussion burning during the power stroke of the piston.
According to J. Bruce McBurney in his The Secret Super High Mileage Report (see contact info. at end of article), there are two basic ways to achieve the percussion type reaction to power the engine more efficiently. The first and easiest is fractionalization, which distills the fuel and burns each level of it simultaneously because each level will consist of similarly sized molecules. This system recirculates the fuel and the downside is that the portion of the fuel that boils at over 350 degrees F, is left unused in the tank.
Thermal Catalytic Cracking (TCC) is the other and more efficient system of the two. TCC causes the molecular structure of the entire fuel to be changed by breaking the larger multiple carbon molecules into much smaller singular carbon molecules. Fuel thus made of similar small molecules burns completely and instantaneously and the energy is transformed more efficiently with a smaller charge. This cracking action uses all the fuel instead of leaving leftover high boiling point fuel to burn in the exhaust pipe. What is basically happening with any successful supercarb system is that the fuel is converted completely into vaporous natural gas and methanol before getting detonated in the engine.
McBurney has compiled a collection of supercarb publications which he has for sale, and has reviewed the various methods and their results. It is well worth reading for any ingenious Americans who wish to take responsibility by improving their fuel consumption habits.
A common theme in the supercarb arena, is initially exceptional results with subsequent diminishing returns. McBurney attributes this to fuel additives, which coat the catalytic component of the various devices and eventually renders them ineffective. Many promising devices have "failed" for lack of clean fuel.
Another common theme are various acts of suppression for any system that works. Usually a buyer of the technology offers an incredible sum for a controlling interest and then shelves the product. Patent complications and financing challenges also act to suppress products which threaten the oil cartel’s market. And occasionally there is a case like Tom Ogle who began tinkering at age 19 and by age 24 developed a system which would get over 100 MPG in a V8 powered Ford Galaxy. He sold his invention to a firm which promised to develop it further, but they turned out to be a financing swindle which failed to produce any results. Mr. Ogle was first shot and then months later died of an alleged drug and alcohol overdose, and possible suicide, at age 26.
The free energy movement
Tesla’s "aether" is also known by others under various names such as "Over Unity" and "Zero Point Radiation" (ZPR). It has been the subject of many researchers who are attempting to tap into free energy—like Tesla did in 1931 with his aether powered electric Pierce Arrow car. More information on this subject can be found at www.infinite-energy.com.
The more common and commercially available alternatives such as wind solar and hydro power systems can be investigated at www.moreenergy.org. Many alternative energy system providers located across the nation offer catalogs which provide information on designing your own system. Many professionals also offer such services.
If you want to seize the moment and turn our "crisis" into an opportunity, then visit the following web sites and begin to assume responsibility for your positive future:
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