I'm sort of digging up something with this question, which relates the the whole wireless power transfer concept. I've looked at a question about power transfer and Tesla, and I know that there's ways of doing it at a limited distance with resonance and inductive charging. There's beaming power through microwaves and lasers, and there was Tesla's old concept of sending electricity through the ground, which is unclear but probably also not very efficient (maybe somehow it would be, but of course that info is hard to come by). So each of those have their own ups and downs, but I wanted to ask about another concept for this. One of the obscure not real/lost things that comes up with Tesla, alongside the death ray, the tower, the radiant energy, and all the free power stuff is impulse electricity. So I thought to myself, if that was real, what real life thing could that be? Then it occurred to me; an impulsive transient. I know that's a voltage spike that can happen when electricity is discharged through an inductor or through certain other mechanisms. I think that's usually something they try to get rid of in power systems, since it can damage the systems, but could it be possible to transmit power through some transient phenomenon? Has any attempt been made to use voltage spikes or transients to transmit power? Inverse-square law applies?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Can you provide a link to "impulse electricity". At the moment we just have your word for its existence and a more authentic link is needed. \$\endgroup\$ – Andy aka Nov 14 '16 at 8:34

See: near field RFID, wireless charging of cell phones and smart watches, etc. Using the near field to couple inductors works, but drops off far faster than 1/r^2.


Any transient that could deliver significant amounts of power would also be quite dangerous to electronic circuits, likely the very circuits you are trying to power. Like most of Tesla's schemes, not practical in the Real World.

No question that Tesla was a genius, but he had 19th century concept of how electronics and physics worked. Here 100 years later, a million new ideas have been developed into practical products that benefit us every day. But in 100 years, thousands of people who have tried to make something practical out of Tesla's schemes have been unable to produce anything of note. That should tell you something.

One of Tesla's schemes made it into the modern world, and that is the poly-phase AC induction motor. Westinghouse bought the patent from Tesla in 1888 and it is the basis for most large industrial motors around the planet to this day.

  • \$\begingroup\$ So maybe kind of possible, but not practical. \$\endgroup\$ – Tom Nov 14 '16 at 3:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ In the same way that it is "possible" to power your mountain cabin from lightning strikes. If it doesn't catch fire first. \$\endgroup\$ – Richard Crowley Nov 14 '16 at 3:16

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