On the 10th July 1905, Nikola Tesla started his last project, the Tower of Power. Tesla’s inventions had already changed the world on several occasions, most notably when he developed a modern alternating current technology.
He had also won fame for his victory over Thomas Edison in the well-publicized “battle of currents,” where he proved that his alternating current was far more practical and safe than Edison-brand direct current.
Though Tesla’s tower of power was far from completion, it was rumored to have been tested on several occasions, with spectacular, crowd-pleasing results. The ultimate purpose of this unique structure was to change the world forever.
Although many people are familiar with this project many fail to understand it’s original idea.
The whole concept of the project was to globally connect the entire world by using his tower of power as the main headquarters from which people could globally communicate to each other.
That phenomenon is known today as the Internet, a place where you could chat with a person from Japan even if you are in the USA.
The Internet is a by far the most advanced technology humans have ever seen and the fact that Tesla invented the Internet in the 19 century shows you just how far ahead he was with his astonishing innovations.
In 1905, a team of construction workers in the small village of Shoreham, New York labored to erect a truly extraordinary structure. Over a period of several years, the men had managed to assemble the framework and wiring for the 187-foot-tall Wardenclyffe Tower, in spite of severe budget shortfalls and a few engineering snags.
The project was overseen by its designer, the eccentric-yet-ingenious inventor Nikola Tesla (10 July 1856 – 7 January 1943).
Atop his tower was perched a fifty-five-ton dome of conductive metals, and beneath it stretched an iron root system that penetrated more than 300 feet into the Earth’s crust. “In this system that I have invented, it is necessary for the machine to get a grip of the earth,” he explained, “otherwise it cannot shake the earth. It has to have a grip… so that the whole of this globe can quiver.”
His first presentation for this project was 1891, where he gave a lecture for the members of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers in New York City, where he made a striking demonstration.
In each hand, he held a gas discharge tube, an early version of the modern fluorescent bulb. The tubes were not connected to any wires, but nonetheless, they glowed brightly during his demonstration.
Tesla explained to the awestruck attendees that the electricity was being transmitted through the air by the pair of metal sheets which sandwiched the stage.
He went on to speculate how one might increase the scale of this effect to transmit wireless power and information over a broad area, perhaps even the entire Earth. As was often the case, Tesla’s audience was engrossed but bewildered.
Back at his makeshift laboratory at Pike’s Peak in Colorado Springs, the eccentric scientist continued to wring the secrets out of electromagnetism to further explore this possibility.
He rigged his equipment with the intent to produce the first lightning-scale electrical discharges ever accomplished by mankind, a feat which would allow him to test many of his theories about the conductivity of the Earth and the sky. For this purpose, he erected a 142-foot mast on his laboratory roof, with a copper sphere on the tip.
The tower’s substantial wiring was then routed through an exceptionally large high-voltage Tesla coil in the laboratory below. On the night of his experiment, following a one-second test charge which momentarily set the night alight with an eerie blue hum, Tesla ordered his assistant to fully electrify the tower.
Though his notes do not specifically say so, one can only surmise that Tesla stood at Pike’s Peak and cackled diabolically as the night sky over Colorado was cracked by the man-made lightning machine.
Colossal bolts of electricity arced hundreds of feet from the tower’s top to lick the landscape. A curious blue corona soon enveloped the crackling equipment. Millions of volts charged the atmosphere for several moments, but the awesome display ended abruptly when the power suddenly failed.
All of the windows throughout Colorado Springs went dark as the local power station’s industrial-sized generator collapsed under the strain. But amidst such dramatic discharges, Tesla confirmed that the Earth itself could be used as an electrical conductor, and verified some of his suspicions regarding the conductivity of the ionosphere.
His project was never completed because of the lack of funds, but his whole concept remained and was used later on in the 21 century as the technology that connected the world via wireless communications.