Tesla Coils Essay Research Paper PES Physics

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Tesla Coils Essay, Research Paper PES Physics Information Search A Tesla coil is a device that produces a high-frequency, high voltage current. When working at such high frequencies it can generate spectacular lightning-like discharges in to the air. The most popular use for the Tesla coils has been in the film industry, where they are used whenever lightning or electrical arcs are required. Scaled down versions of the tesla coil are also used in television sets. The Tesla coil was invented over 100 years ago. By Nikola Tesla. (The Tesla coil featured above is eight feet high with a toroid ring that is four feet in diameter. This Tesla coil is capable of pumping out quarter of a million volts out in to the air.) The Tesla coil is a high frequency current generator, that uses

the principles of electrical resonance to produce an antinode of high potential at the top of a large coil of wire. The Tesla coil is basically a high frequency transformer with the bottom end of the primary and secondary coils connected together and firmly grounded. PES Physics Information Search (The Illustration above is of a Tesla coil capable of producing half a million volts.) A Tesla coil consists of three main parts. The first part is called the primary coil or simply primary. The primary is simply a coil of thick wire wound around several times. The driver circuitry is connected directly to the primary coil, and the primary coil is wound on top of the secondary coil. The second and largest part of a Tesla coil is called the secondary coil, or just secondary. The

secondary consists of a hollow core. Around the core is wound magnet wire from the bottom to top. Secondary coils can be any length; however, a larger secondary always produces more power. The last main part of the Tesla coil is called the Toroid. Toroids can be shaped in many different ways. The most common is a ring or ball that sits on top of the secondary coil. Toroids can be made out of any conductor of electricity. The electric arcs produced by the Tesla coil are emitted from the toroid. How they work Tesla coils are resonant transformers. This means that there is a specific frequency at which they operate. This frequency is called the resonant frequency. What determines this resonant frequency is the secondary coil. To get the secondary to resonate, pulses of energy have

to be fed at just the right rate and frequency. Energy pulses come from the primary circuit. This circuit is made up of (1) the high-voltage transformer, (2) the primary capacitor, (3) the spark gap and (4) the primary coil. Together, these parts form a crude type of oscillator. What happens is thus: the transformer charges the capacitor up until there is a high enough voltage across the spark gap to jump the air gap. When this spark occurs, the energy stored in the capacitor is ‘dumped’ into the primary inductor. The primary inductor then builds a magnetic field as the capacitor’s energy flows through it. The magnetic field will eventually collapse, and will in turn dump what energy is left back into the capacitor. This see-saw activity continues until there isn’t enough

voltage left to jump the spark gap. The oscillation frequency is determined by the value of the primary capacitor and the primary inductor. Together, they form what is called a parallel-resonant circuit. In typical Telsa coil designs, the frequency is adjusted by altering the primary coil’s inductance. If the energy bursts are of the same frequency as the secondary, the energy transferred by the primary’s magnetic field will start to build up in the secondary coil. Much like a laser, this energy grows and amplifies itself until there is an incredible voltage built up at the top of the coil, which dissapates into the air in the form of electrical sparks. The operation of the Tesla Coil is as follows:- 1. The spark gap initially appears as an open-circuit. Current from the HV