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When I see someone want to get high voltage - we see tesla coil.

Why everyone do that instead of building Cockcroft–Walton generator? Are there any issues with Cockcroft–Walton generator, making it less fun than tesla coil?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Like the Wikipedia article says this was invented long before Cockcroft and Walton by a guy named Greinacher. I always refer to it as a Greinacher multiplier. \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Aug 14 '11 at 13:24
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It's more fun. Nothing says "mad scientist" like big coils, a few jacob's ladders around the place, sparks flying off towards the sky, and a visible corona. Some of these things don't work with DC, and a few diodes and capacitors aren't nearly as awe inspiring.

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Mostly, the tesla coil is simpler than the multiplier. If you want to increase the output voltage of the CW generator, you need to inncrease the number of stages and/or voltage tolerance of the diodes. If you want to do the same for the tesla coil, simply use a bigger coil.

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The way I understand it, a CW Generator creates high voltage DC, whereas a tesla coil create high voltage AC.

For the fun sparky effects it is easier to use AC that DC as it should spark at a lower voltage.

Also, to get a CW generator up to the kind of voltages that a tesla coil typically gets to (say half a million volts) would take a lot of stages and be quite hard to make.

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Maybe it's the added bonus that the Tesla coil makes lots of noise. The old school spark-gap ones buzz rather loudly, and it's even possible with solid state drive to make a TC emit audio signals from the discharge.

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    \$\begingroup\$ +1 for Singing Tesla coils a, b, c, etc. \$\endgroup\$ – davidcary May 23 '13 at 18:40
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A tesla coil uses resonance ,and the q of the secondary multiplies the reactive watts. The reactive output of a tesla coil at 500kv at 8 amps is 4 Mega Watts. Though its not true power ,what your seeing is the reactive power entering the capacitance of air. A voltage multiplier is just true power being stored and discharged.

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Tesla Coils are marginally less dangerous due to the "Skin Effect" whereas a C.W. Multiplier can become deadly pretty quickly. Also, having a constant stream of arcs, that loud buzz, and the smell of ozone is an experience that a Tesla Coil is quite adept at providing! Besides, a Tesla Coil looks a lot like the universally recognized "Ray Gun"!

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