"QUANTUM SHOT" #250
Get your energy buzz in the morning
We wrote about the full scale high-voltage and Tesla experiments going on in Russia, producing 100 meter lightnings and other spectacular effects in the surrounding forest. These effects proved to be too fascinating to pass by, as many inspiring scientists in various countries are building small scale replicas of Tesla and other high-voltage equipment in their backyards and garages. We've been sent a number of images, electrifying enough to scare some fire departments - proving that this backyard activity is popular not just with curious engineers who want to get a quick "buzz" but also with photographers.
These "furry" sparks can extend to 8 feet and carry around half a million volts:
(image credit: resonanceresearch)
Russian "Master" sends his chair "back to the future"
With kind permission of Master we show here his experiment with DIY Tesla set. His impressive results include a 5 meter long high-voltage discharge, which converted a normal chair into an "electric" one, and a demonstration of fluorescent tubes glowing purely from the rig's surrounding electro-magnetic field. Other friends of Master also tried a lesser-scale set-up, made from the dozens of used tin coffee cans.
(images credit: Master)
Tesla Down Under
You can observe bigger Tesla installations in action on Peter Terren's site Tesla Down Under. With his permission, here are some of the most spectacular images from his hair-raising experiments. Note, that Peter basically works with the equipment on his own, with a little help from his interested kids - so it's really quite impressive that he came up with such an extensive catalog of electrical phenomena found on his site.
His (very effective) Car Theft Prevention program:
The encircling power arcs are achieved by connecting motorized 6 foot aluminum tube to the top of the Tesla coil. A variation of this setup, called "The Eye of Sauron" produces a breathtaking effect, when rotated (long-exposure photo):
"Sauron's Aura" is even more striking - the Tesla coil is mounted 11 foot (3.3 m) in the air and the rotating rod is attached to a long beam.
Peter also conducts some very odd looking experiments with "swimming pool sparks" (do not try to imitate this, as you definitely have to know what you are doing). Peter says, "The salt water pool is very conductive like a big ground so there is absolutely no sensation. People associate water and electricity with danger. Like dropping the hairdryer in the bathtub. But the danger only occurs if the water forms a path to you then ground ie if you touch the taps, bath drain or wet grounded floor. The chain mail glove has a copper braid attached otherwise it would be a problem if I had my hand right out of the water."
Faraday cage (or Dalek cage, as a homage to Dr. Who) will get you so close to 6 foot sparks, that it just might "electrify" you for the rest of the day:
Peter calls this "Honey... there is some electrical interference", and adds that the mobile phone works just fine:
His site also provides a wealth of information on how to build and enjoy your own Tesla coil. What else does he do in his garage and around it? How about moving small objects by the ionic wind, crushing cans, shrinking coins, exploding stuff for fun and BBQ-ing hot dogs with high-voltage:
Just the sort of activity we'd like to do after a stressful day in the office.
When not in the shack, Peter invades his wife's kitchen to abuse the microwave oven. Here is a very special microwave CD Burner:
or playing with ferro-fluids... We could spend all day on his site.
(images credit: Tesladownunder.com)
Tools for Your Shop
There is a company, located in Wisconsin backwoods, near Wisconsin Dells - "Resonance Research", which is the world's largest manufacturer of Tesla coils, Van de Graaff generators, and various other high voltage machines. They can set you up for some high energy experimentation. (photos by permission)
Model M-150 Resonance Tesla Transformer in action:
Resonance Tesla Transformer (3.5 Million Volts):
"Big Bruiser" Teslathon in action:
They are also the world's largest high voltage research and development center. Fun for the whole family:
Pretty cool "Eye of Thor" effect:
(images credit: resonanceresearch)
Now a couple of interesting videos:
Short but intense clip of a high-voltage arc caused by a 500kV switch opening up at the Nevada Desert's power facility. An enormous Jacob's Ladder effect results:
"Singing" Tesla Coil" - ultimate empowering for DJs and techno-nuts. The primary resonant frequency of the coil is modulated to achieve the tones and melody you hear. Read more info here
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