Some of the most fascinating areas of research into the inner workings of electricity, are those that display unusual and interesting phenomena, and especially those not easily understood and explained by mainstream science and electromagnetism. The field surrounding Tesla's radiant energy and matter, the apparatus, experiments, and wealth of unusual electrical, and even non-electrical related phenomena, is a particular case to note. This first post in a sequence serves as a practical and experimental introduction to this area, along with consideration and discussion of the observed phenomena, and possible interpretations as to their origin and cause ... Read post
In this post we take a preliminary experimental look at the transference of electric power using a cylindrical coil TC and TMT, energised using a linear amplifier generator, and also the high power transfer efficiency that can be achieved in a properly matched system. The setup, tuning, and matching of the linear amplifier is covered in detail in the video experiment where a 500W incandescent lamp can be fully illuminated at power transfer efficiencies over 99% in the close mid-field region. The power is shown to be transferred to the receiver through a single wire between the transmitter and receiver coil through the longitudinal magneto-dielectric mode, and not through transverse electromagnetic radiation or through direct transformer induction. This high-efficiency, very low-loss transference of electric power is possible as the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction are contained around the single wire ... Read post
Sooner or later research into the underlying nature and principles of electricity must inevitably lead to those larger philosophical and esoteric questions surrounding the origin and purpose of life, its mechanisms that constitute the wheelwork of nature, and our purpose and part to play as very small cogs in this grand design. I have in previous posts started to tentatively touch-on and develop my own current understanding of the wheelwork of nature through ideas, designs, experiments, and conjectures regarding displacement and transference of electric power. This post is the first in a sequence looking at experiments in electricity which reveal or suggest clues about this underlying wheelwork, with the associated phenomena and results, their possible origin and purpose, and how we may form a synchronicity with this wheelwork, and hence benefit from a journey that increases our knowledge and awareness of our-self and that of the great mystery or grand design. This first post in the series looks at the wheelwork of nature – fractal “fern” discharge experiment, along with observations, measurements, and interpretation.
For a summary recap on how I see the principles of displacement and transference of electric power, and the conjectures that I have already made based on the experimental work reported so far, I recommend reviewing Displacement and Transference of Electric Power, Tesla’s Radiant Energy and Matter, the Transference of Electric Power category, and the overall Introduction to this website. The essence of this definitive journey was so well articulated by Nicola Tesla, in what is for me one of his greatest statements, and which should have both enormous and far reaching impact on the efforts of our research into the wheelwork of nature, and the underlying principles and mechanisms that constitute this wheelwork: “Throughout space there is energy. Is this energy static or kinetic! If static our hopes are in vain; if kinetic – and this we know it is, for certain – then it is a mere question of time when men will succeed in attaching their machinery to the very wheelwork of nature.”, Tesla.
In this statement Tesla shares his unwavering believe that it is only a matter of time until we will attach our experiments, apparatus, and machines directly to the wheelwork of nature, not if, but when. And how close have we gotten to this vision ? It would seem to me that in the field of electricity research as a whole, a little progress may have been made, but we still seem quite far from accomplishing this monumental task of understanding, and making a shift of focus from measuring voltages and currents on the bench in an apparatus seemingly unrelated to the wheelwork of nature, to an inclusive and intuitive approach where the workings of our apparatus reflect the underlying wheelwork in the natural world. In order to accomplish this I believe it is a necessity to work at building a bridge between the Philosophical/Esoteric and Scientific disciplines, through looking at electrical phenomena with fresh eyes and with a mind open to grasping an understanding of the underlying principles and mechanisms across seemingly diverse and seemingly different disciplines.
Science in our current times considers the field of electromagnetism to be almost entirely understood and explained, with any further exploration aimed at the successive dissection of smaller and smaller detail. Whilst science has developed a successful model to explain the outer form of electromagnetism, and the principles and equations required to utilise this field in engineering, this is only a good observation and measurement of the outer form, with all the underlying quality and richness of this subject yet to discover. In this post I intend to start this process by including conjectures regarding the experimental results and phenomena that cross these multi-disciplinary boundaries, and hence take those small steps on the long road to building a bridge of understanding and ultimately greater awareness of our own inner world and that of nature. Whilst this will not appeal to some that read this post, for others it may trigger ideas and different ways to consider and interpret the results of our experiments, and open the possibility for new discovery of the inclusive hidden world ever present in our daily endeavours.
In understanding Tesla’s statement it would seem important to first get a grasp on what constitutes the wheelwork of nature, and how we go about attaching our endeavours to it. In an effort to impart some of what I think and feel on this topic I will use the experiment to be presented in this post as an example, which with all best intent may shed but a little light on the vast unknown darkness that lies ahead of us on this journey. In this post I will be looking experimentally at a Tesla coil (TC) experiment first demonstrated by Eric Dollard, using his Integratron apparatus in the 90s. The apparatus generated a “fern” like discharge, one quite distinctly different from the normal range of “lightning” like discharges emitted by the majority of TC apparatus and experiments.
This “fern” discharge is particularly interesting when viewed as a form of fractal, which may also have golden-ratio geometry associated with it, where the filaments and tendrils formed along the primary streamers have an impulse like nature, are momentarily transient and orthogonal in nature, and the overall growth and pattern of the discharge is reflected in naturally occurring forms. These combined together indicate to me that this experiment may lend itself well to exploring and gaining a better understanding for the wheelwork of nature, or in other words, the underlying principles and mechanisms that lead to the generation of this exciting result. Since Eric’s original experiment there appears to be little public knowledge available on the details of how to generate this phenomena, the apparatus and operating conditions required to call-forth or reveal this type of discharge, and considered analysis and conjecture on how this phenomena occurs, and what it can show and tell us regarding the wheelwork of nature.
In this post I will be experimentally demonstrating this phenomena in a two-part video experiment, looking in detail at the apparatus and setup required to generate this discharge, along with analysis of the TC impedance characteristics, and some preliminary consideration as to the meaning and relevance of this phenomena. As way of introduction directly to the results, figure 1 below shows a side-by-side comparative image of Eric’s original experimental result, and the discharge obtained in the experiment presented in this post. It can be seen that the discharge in nature and form are equivalent.
If we study these images carefully looking at the similarities and differences then we start to see a most astonishing result, that many of the features occur in the same proportion and with same intrinsic detail. The primary tendril grows vertically in the centre and is essentially the same form with the same curve, sub-tendrils emerge at similar points along its length, and micro-filaments are ever-present orthogonal to the main structure. The second main tendril to the left, (allowing for some 3D rotation on axis), follows a similar pattern with corresponding bifurcations and sub-tendrils along its length, as do the other smaller tendrils and filaments around the breakout point.
When considering electric discharges, what are the chances that two different experiments, with different coil systems, materials, and components, and different generators operated with unknown differences, will produce two discharges that are so very similar in geometric structure, form, and nature ? If the nature of the discharge is essentially random both spatially and/or temporally, then it would seem most unlikely, but if there are underlying guiding principles at work then it would seem quite possible, provided the same set of principles are involved in both experiments. These underlying guiding principles I am referring to as the wheelwork of nature, and this experimental series is intended to see what can be discovered, understood, and applied in attempting to attach these experiments to the very wheel work of nature!
This experiment uses the Plate Supply, yet to be covered in detail in the Tube Power Supply Series, as the high tension generator, combined with a dedicated coil system consisting of a single Russian GU-5B power triode, and a nominally designed 3.5Mc conventional style Tesla coil. The TC is designed and arranged with a tightly wound and coupled primary and secondary coil geometry, specifically intended for high voltage magnification and the generation of discharge streamers. The design deliberately steers clear of any design proportions involving the golden ratio or optimisations suitable for the transference of electric power in a TMT system, and this is intended in order to emphasis the quality of the experimental result generated by underlying principles in the wheelwork of nature, rather than outer geometric proportions arranged to demonstrate any particular result.
Part 1 of the video experiment demonstrates and includes aspects of the following:
1. Introduction to the wheelwork of nature experimental series based on Nicola Tesla’s famous quotation, and Eric Dollard’s original “fern” discharge experiment.
2. Brief Introduction and consideration of the importance and implications of the bridge between the Philosophical/Esoteric and Scientific disciplines, through grasping an understanding of the underlying principles and mechanisms of the wheelwork of nature.
3. Overview of the tube plate supply generator, GU-5B coil system, and Tesla coil to be used in the experiment.
4. Design and construction considerations important to a high-frequency 3.5Mc Tesla secondary coil, suited to discharge experiments in the wheelwork of nature.
5. Primary coil drive circuit apparatus using a series feedback class-C Armstrong oscillator, tuned to the lower parallel resonant mode at 2.6-2.9Mc, and matched for best power transfer from the generator.
6. The “fern” discharge phenomena at various generator power output levels from 100W – 2.2kW
7. Observation of the characteristics of the “fern” discharge including fractal like self-repeating, self-similar tendrils, golden-ratio like proportions in the tendrils, orthogonal emitted sub-tendrils, and orthogonal displacement like micro-filaments and fibres.
8. Symmetric and reflected discharge patterns in geometric space, including tendril growth and extinction, and temporally based non-random, sequenced and repeating discharge patterns indicative of a defined “dance” routine.
9. Conjecture of an underlying dynamic and guiding pattern and order to the “fern” discharges, and hence a tantalising and astonishing view of part of the underlying mechanisms of the wheelwork of nature.
Part 2 of the video experiment demonstrates and includes aspects of the following:
1. Experimental variations to part 1 of the experiment in order to see if the nature and form of the fractal “fern” discharge could be changed to another form
2. Tuning the coil system down to 2.1Mc on the lower parallel resonant mode, whilst observing the discharge form.
3. Tuning the coil system up to 4.0Mc on the upper parallel resonant mode, whilst observing the discharge form.
4. Tuning the coil system across the transition between the lower and upper parallel resonant modes, whilst observing the discharge form.
5. Changing the blocking/tank capacitor at the output of the plate supply from 25nF 25kV to 30uF 8kV.
6. Changing the plate supply output from a bridge rectified waveform with blocking capacitor, to a raw unrectified waveform with no blocking capacitor.
7. Adding a toroidal top-load to the Tesla coil and retuning the lower parallel resonant mode to 2.28Mc, whilst observing the discharge form
8. Replacing the single GU-5B power triode with parallel connected dual 833C power triode tubes.
9. Observation using the dual 833C triodes at the upper parallel resonant mode at 3.9Mc of a tighter and more rounded fractal “fern” discharge, with shorter, more rounded, and more numerous tendrils.
Figure 2 below shows the schematic for the experimental apparatus used in the video experiments. The high-resolution version can be viewed by clicking here. The tube plate supply is not included here and will be covered subsequently in another post.
Principle of Operation and Construction of the Experimental System
The plate supply is configured with two high voltage (HV) microwave oven transformers connected in series to produce at maximum load 4.2kV @ 800mA, and up to 6.5kV unloaded. From the GU-5B datasheet the maximum anode potential is rated at 5kV for frequencies less than 30Mc, so two transformers in series are adequate when driving the experiment in CW (constant wave) mode. Although not covered in the datasheet the GU-5B can withstand considerably higher anode voltages up to ~ 8-9kV when driven in a pulsed mode with a low duty cycle, which considerably improves the forward pressure supplied to the primary coil. In this experiment I use only CW mode in order to simplify the generator drive characteristics, and to minimise variations in the circuit that could further mask the origin of the discharge phenomena to be explored.
The output of the HV transformers can be configured to a variety of different stages in the plate supply, including raw output, bridge rectified, or level shifted. In this experiment I predominantly use the bridge rectified output to provide an all positive unipolar electrical pressure to the coil system. For experimental variation I also demonstrate the raw output of the transformers which supplies the SCR controlled portion of the sinusoidal transformer output, up to the full sinusoidal output at maximum input power. In this experiment the purpose of the generator is to supply sufficient voltage swing across the primary to ensure high voltage magnification at the top-end, whilst also supplying adequate current in the primary circuit so there is strong magnetic induction field coupled between the primary and secondary coils, and hence the discharges are hot, white, thick tendrils that can be readily observed, measured, and studied.
At the output of the plate supply is the blocking/tank capacitor which is intended to protect the plate supply components, such as the semiconductors in the bridge rectifier and the power control SCR, by preventing voltage spikes and oscillation from the primary resonant circuit from being reflected back into the power supply. This can happen very easily e.g. if there is a poor impedance match between the generator (tube anode) and the Tesla coil, or during tuning experiments the tube stops oscillating, or oscillation becomes unstable between the upper and lower parallel resonant frequencies. In the basic experiment a 25nF 25kV pulse capacitor is used as the blocking/tank capacitor at the output of the power supply, which is raised right up to 30µF 8kV for the variation experiments.
The positive output from the blocking capacitor is fed via a short length of AWG 12 silicon coated, micro-stranded, low-inductance cable to the primary coil circuit, which consists of the 7.5 turn primary coil and a KP1-4 10kV vacuum variable capacitor 20-1000pF connected in parallel. The connections between the primary coil and the primary tuning capacitor are AWG 8 silicon coated, micro-stranded, low-inductance cable, and the inter-connections on the top of the coil system on both sides of the primary coil are made with copper busbars and 4mm high voltage terminals. The other end of the primary coil circuit is connected directly to the anode of the GU-5B tube, again using the same AWG 12 low-inductance cable.
The complete primary circuit from the plate supply back to ground is connected using low-inductance heavy duty cable in order to reduce inductive reactance losses in the primary circuit, and hence maximise the potential difference swing across the primary coil. In this experiment the ground connection is simply the line earth provided to both the plate supply unit, and the coil system unit. For simplicity, and hence maximum clarity on the experimental phenomena, no rf ground was used separately to the grounding of the units to the line earth. So the return line for both the generator drive via the GU-5B and plate supply, the secondary coil bottom-end, and the pickup coil bottom-end are all connected directly together by the line earth.
In order to simplify the TC drive from the generator the GU-5B is arranged as a Class-C Armstrong oscillator, which derives feedback from the secondary coil resonation via a 4-turn pickup-coil which is positioned under the primary coil, and isolated from the primary and secondary by a nylon plastic platform at the base of the TC. The pickup coil feeds the charging circuit in the grid circuit of the tube. Correct polarity and selection of the grid capacitor combined with the parallel discharge rheostat will enable the tube to oscillate at the selected and tuned parallel resonant mode.
The principle of operation of this form of tube driven series feedback oscillator is covered in detail in the post Vacuum Tube Generator (811A) – Part 1. In a tube driven primary coil circuit it is important to maximise the voltage swing across the primary coil, and at the top-end of the tube anode, whilst ensuring maximum power transfer from the generator to the primary circuit. This is accomplished by ensuring that the anode resistance of the tube during operation is arranged to be as close to the resistance presented by the primary coil at either the upper or lower parallel resonant frequency that is being used. This is then fine-tuned for optimum power transfer by adjusting the grid feedback bias.
When driven by this type of oscillator with feedback directly from the secondary coil resonation, the oscillation will centre around one of the two parallel modes presented by a tuned primary-secondary Tesla coil. The different modes that result from the close coupling of a primary and secondary coil, are well covered, measured, and explained in Cylindrical Coil Input Impedance – TC and TMT Z11. The design of the Tesla coil itself for this experiment will be covered next, along with the usual small signal ac input impedance characteristics Z11, in order to understand the TC impedance properties and characteristics, the best match and driven point for the experiment, and the range of tuning that is available for variations in the experiment.
Figures 3 below show a range of pictures of the experimental system, including some of the construction details of specific interest, and some of the variations to the initial basic setup of the experiment.
Secondary Coil Design, Considerations and Construction
The design of the Tesla coil always starts with the characteristics of the secondary coil to define its series fundamental resonant frequency ƒO (ƒSS), and the geometry of the coil suitable for the type of experiment to be undertaken. Design considerations for Tesla coils are considered in detail in the post Tesla Coil Geometry and Cylindrical Coil Design. For this experiment ƒSS without any top-load or wire extension, was designed nominally to be in the 80m amateur radio band at 3.5Mc. The geometry for the coil is to be tightly wound with many turns e.g. > 100 in order to maximise magnification of the dielectric induction field across the secondary length, and which is well suited to discharge streamers of a good length and intensity at the break-out point at the top-end of the secondary coil. When grounded at the bottom-end, which represents a lowering of the bottom-end impedance, the secondary will appear as a λ/4 resonator where the series mode resonant frequency ƒSS is dominated by the wire-length and series self-capacitance of the coil. The accompanying parallel resonant mode will be at a higher frequency than the series mode, and is dominated by the inter-turn inductance and inter-turn capacitance of the coil.
The tightly wound secondary geometry with many turns has an aspect ratio of 5:1 so the coil is tall and narrow and well suited to high voltage magnification at the top-end. A suitable piece of 3″ diameter irrigation pipe was available in the workshop which had a measured diameter of 76mm. The complete design of the coil deliberately avoids any golden-ratio proportions in the aspect ratio of the secondary, the conductor diameter to the conductor spacing of the windings, and the drive parallel resonant mode frequency to the series mode frequency. This intentional omission of the golden-ratio is intended to simplify the interpretation of the experimental results, by removing considerations of influences that may arise from golden-ratio relationships between the experimental apparatus and the underlying principles of the wheelwork of nature. Subsequent variations to the basic experiment can then be added e.g. a Tesla coil that includes golden ratio proportions but has a nominally designed equal series fundamental resonant frequency at 3.5Mc, in order to compare the results and observed phenomena for golden-ratio influences and/or principles.
Tccad 2.0 was used for a rapid and approximate indication of the electrical and resonant characteristics of the secondary coil, the detailed results of which are shown below in figure 4. The wire selected for the secondary coil is a good quality silicone coated multi-stranded conductor, the silicone coating being very good both thermally, and as an insulator to prevent breakouts and breakdown from the upper turns of the coil to the lower ones. A standard electrical wire size 1mm2 (1.1mm diameter) with a total diameter of 2.45mm (nominally 2.5mm in the specification) was found to be ideal for the design proportions, and also avoids any golden-ratio winding proportions in the design.
The parameter “Winding Height of Secondary Coil” on the turn period of 2.45mm, (“Wire Diameter” 1.10mm + “Spacing Between Windings” 1.35mm), was used to adjust the number of turns in the secondary until the “Approximate Resonant Frequency” was closest to the desired 3.5Mc, and in this case was calculated to be 3493.87kc. Since we are running the secondary coil without a top-load, and with many tightly coupled turns, the “Secondary Quarter Wavelength Resonant Frequency” will be far from that required, in this case at 2025.26kc, the difference in the two also indicating that there will be a reasonably wide difference in frequency between the series and parallel resonant modes of the secondary.
In this experiment the secondary coil is to be driven magnetically coupled to a primary coil as per a standard and conventional Tesla coil arrangement, and which is well suited to being driven by variably tuned upper and lower parallel modes by a feedback oscillator. Since a spark gap generator is not being used, which requires very high oscillatory currents in a tuned primary tank circuit, the secondary coil could be driven directly by the generator without a primary coil, and at the series fundamental mode. This would require an output transformer to transform the high plate resistance of the tube to the low series resistance of the secondary coil at resonance. Whilst this latter method is a more efficient and matched drive at the series resonant frequency, it also adds additional complexity in the output matching transformer, and the controlled output frequency from a linear amplifier drive.
Primary Coil Design, Considerations and Construction
For this experiment, simplicity of Tesla coil drive was selected in order to minimise influence on the final results, and hence a standard primary-secondary Tesla coil arrangement was used. The primary coil is a standard tightly wound multi-turn geometry with a heavier gauge wire than the secondary coil, nominally again a good quality silicone coated, multi-stranded conductor, and of a standard electrical wire size of 2.5mm2, and with a total diameter of 4.0mm. The diameter of the coil was set at 130mm using acrylic tube, which results in a reasonably tight magnetic coupling to the secondary, and hence good power transfer from primary to the secondary, combined with excellent voltage magnification properties, and all very well suited for large and powerful discharges at the top-end. The number of primary turns was defined as a balance between the magnetic coupling and the tuned parallel mode frequency when combined with the KP1-4 primary tuning capacitor. 7.5 turns was found as an optimal balance between the magnetic coupling, a suitable tuning range of the primary variable capacitor to cover both the upper and lower parallel modes, and physical connection of the electrical outputs to the input busbars on both the +ve and -ve sides.
This form of primary is very well suited to a generator which is based on a driven oscillator or linear amplifier. In this type of generator which is often vacuum tube based, (or semiconductor based), the drive frequency of the generator is arranged to be at a specific point in relation to ƒSS dependent on the series or parallel mode to be driven, and the primary circuit consisting of the coil and parallel tuning capacitor are not arranged to be resonant to the selected mode of the secondary. In this case the primary currents are much lower than in a spark-gap primary tank circuit, but nonetheless transfer maximised power from the generator to the primary based on a reasonable impedance match of the tube plate resistance to the high parallel resonant mode resistance. In addition, no attempt has been made to design the primary circuit for equal weights of conductor with the secondary coil, thereby also simplifying the included design principles, and in principle simplifying the interpretation of the measured results.
From repeated operation of the coil system in discharge experiments, the gauge and design of the primary has been found to get quite hot when running at high input powers up to ~ 2.5kW, and for sustained time periods e.g. > 1-2 minutes in CW mode. Pulsed mode improves this further, but was not used in the basic form of the apparatus, to again not complicate the possible interpretation of the experimental results. Later experiments use a re-designed primary of the same diameter but with much heavier gauge windings e.g. AWG8 or 12 silicone coated micro-stranded wire, and a naturally convection cooled coil wound on support posts, rather than a solid acrylic tube. Details of this improved primary coil will be presented in subsequent experimental posts.
Overall, the design of the primary and secondary, both electrically and mechanically, were arranged to be able to cope with a high drive input power from the plate supply, which provides hot white discharge streamers at the top-end of the secondary. These powerful discharges of good length and definition make it much easier to observe, identify, and study their form and geometric structure over extended time periods, and the designed apparatus lends itself directly to the purpose of uncovering the wheelwork of nature. This is in itself a most important principle in understanding what it means to “hook” our apparatus to the wheelwork of nature, or in other words apparatus suitable for such discovery must be designed, constructed, and operated with deliberate intent and purpose to this end. In this way it becomes possible for the intent and purpose of the operator and apparatus to reflect and attune to specific vibrations within the wheelwork of nature, revealing new in-sight, knowledge, and understanding!
Small Signal AC Input Impedance Measurements
Figures 5 below show the small signal ac input impedance Z11 measured directly on the experimental system, and using an SDR-Kits VNWA vector network analyser, as used on many experimental pages on this site. The measurement setup, equipment, and connection to the experimental apparatus is shown in figures 4.14 and 4.15.
To view the large images in a new window whilst reading the explanations click on the figure numbers below.
Fig 5.1. Shows the input impedance Z11 over the range 500kc to 5Mc for the secondary coil series connected to the VNWA, and with a 1m earth extension at the negative terminal of VNWA to lower the impedance at this point, and ensure a λ/4 resonator measurement, whilst maintaining the secondary coil as unloaded as possible. The series measurement of the secondary enables its characteristics to be measured with minimal variation brought about from coupling with the primary, and hence the cleanest results for the characteristics of the secondary alone. The magnitude of Z11 (blue curve) show clearly the series fundamental resonant mode ƒSS (secondary-series mode) at marker M1 at 3.44Mc, and series resistance RS = 118.2Ω, and the corresponding phase change from an inductive to capacitive reactance characteristic of a series resonant circuit. At ƒSS the phase of Z11 (red curve) Ø is ~ 0°, and shows that the secondary coil is a completely resistive impedance, where the frequency of this mode is dominated by the wire length of the coil combined with its overall self-capacitance and series resistance.
The parallel resonant mode ƒSP (secondary-parallel mode) occurs at marker M2 at 4.01Mc, and again has the characteristic high resistance RP ~ 76kΩ with a phase Ø ~ 0°, that corresponds to resonance that results from a parallel resonant circuit, and in this case dominated by the inter-turn inductive reactance, and the inter-turn capacitive reactance. It is most characteristic for a Tesla secondary coil of many different geometries to display this dual series and parallel modes, and which makes this form of coil most suitable to a wide range of driven and operating conditions, with a variety of different types of generators. The impedance characteristics of a Tesla coil are measured and explored in detail for the input impedance in Cylindrical Coil Input Impedance – TC and TMT Z11, and for the transmission gain in Cylindrical Coil Transmission Gain – TC S21.
It can be seen from this initial series measurement of the secondary coil that its measured properties correspond well with the designed characteristics, where ƒSS at 3.44Mc deviates only by ~1.5% from the Tccad results at 3.49Mc. The span from the series to the parallel mode from 3.44Mc to 4.01Mc spans entirely the 80m amateur radio band of transmission. It is also to be noted that when compared with the cylindrical coil measured in Cylindrical Coil Input Impedance – TC and TMT Z11, that the quality factor Q, of this coil is considerably lower. This can be identified easily by the sharpness of the phase transition at ƒSS and will reflect much more noticeably into the primary coil Z11 characteristics of the system as seen by the generator. The lower Q results predominantly from the tightly wound geometry of the secondary coil. the high aspect ratio, the large number of turns. and hence the increased series resistance of the secondary coil at series resonance. The reduced Q however, does not impact on the intended experimental purpose of this system, but is interesting to note on the geometry differences of coils explored on this website.
Fig 5.2. Simply shows fig. 5.1 on a magnified vertical impedance scale (1000Ω per division), and emphasises the details of the series fundamental resonant mode ƒSS at marker M1. This mode forms a very clean and stable drive point suitable for a frequency controlled linear amplifier generator either driven directly from the generator without a primary coil, or via a primary coil, and in both cases with an output transformer and matching stage. In this experiment we drive the parallel modes using a series feedback oscillator in order to simplify the drive circuit, reduce possible experimental system influences, and allow for wide and easy primary circuit variation, and hence self-tracking and tuning frequency control.
Fig 5.3. Here we have now combined the primary and secondary coils directly in the arrangement that they will be driven by the generator. The VNWA acts as the generator and drives the primary as a λ/2 coil, and the primary tuning capacitor CP has been removed from the circuit so we can see the basic coupled interaction between the primary and secondary coils. The secondary top-end now includes the short copper breakout point, and the bottom-end is grounded to the line earth circuit used in experimental operation. In other words, other than CP being disconnected from the primary, the circuit is identical in connection and arrangement to that driven by the generator in the video experiment. We can see that in this primary-fed measurement ƒSS at marker M2 has now shifted down considerably from the free resonance of the secondary on its own at 3.44Mc to 3.18Mc. This is most directly a result of the increased wire length when the secondary coil bottom-end is connected to the experiment line earth. The series resistance at resonance of the secondary RS = 118.2Ω is now transformed into the primary and added to the series impedance of the primary circuit, results in series mode impedance of ZP = 176.1Ω. This is an impedance rather than a pure resistance at resonance as the phase relationship is skewed slightly by the tight coupling of the secondary and primary.
The parallel mode, as is characteristic when a primary coil is added, has flipped to a frequency below the series mode, and now forms with interaction from the primary, the lower parallel mode at marker M1 at 3.09Mc. The upper parallel mode from the primary coil is at a frequency above the upper end of the scan at 5Mc. This is as a result of the primary tuning capacitor CP having been disconnected, making the self-resonance of the primary coil based on its inductive reactance, and very low self-capacitance, pushing the self-resonant frequency much higher than the bandwidth of this result. When CP is added back into the circuit the upper parallel mode will reside inside the bandwidth of the scan and forms another possible driving point of the system. It can also be clearly seen in this scan the much lower Q factor of the tightly wound and coupled coil arrangement. The compared cylindrical coil which is loosely wound, and with lower primary to secondary coupling factor exhibits a much higher Q, and is much more suitable to experiments in transference of electric power demonstrated particularly in the High-Efficiency Transference of Electric Power experimental series.
It should be noted that there is a slight inflection in the impedance measurements at ~ 3.65Mc which results from connection to the line earth system, and indicating a slight resonant interaction with the earthing system. This interaction continues through the rest of the characteristics but is very minor and not expected to influence the experiment in any significant manner. When the line earth connection was removed and replaced with a long wire extension at the base of the secondary coil this slight inflection does not appear in the characteristics, as can be seen in figs. 5.1 and 5.2.
Fig 5.4. Shows the characteristics of the coil system when tuned to the optimum driven point used in the video experiment. This optimal point is based on using the GU-5B vacuum tube, and when stability, coupled output power, and dissipated power, are all taken into consideration empirically during operation. The primary tuning capacitor has been set to CP = 231.4pF, and it can be seem that the lower parallel mode ƒL is strongly dominant at marker M1 at 2.71Mc. The series resonant mode ƒO is stable as before at M2 @ 3.18Mc, and the upper parallel mode ƒU is suppressed at M3 @ 3.36Mc. During part 1 of the video experiment the lower parallel mode operation point was stably used at input powers over 2kW to demonstrate the nature of the fractal “fern” discharge, and varied in measurement from ~ 2.65Mc to 2.75Mc, a good correspondence to the impedance measurements at this driven point. At M1 the primary resistance RP ~ 10.6kΩ is reasonable match to the anode resistance of the tube, and when fine adjusted using the grid bias rheostat. At this operating point it is demonstrated that significant power can be coupled from the generator to the Tesla coil, and with the formation of hot white fractal “fern” discharges up to 30cm in length.
Fig 5.5. Here the primary tuning capacitor CP = 164pF, and has been tuned to the point where the upper and lower parallel modes are balanced in impedance and essentially if the coils where uncoupled the two parallel modes, one in the secondary, and one in the primary, would occur at the same frequency. The series resonant mode remains stable with only a very slight shift to 3.17Mc. When driven using a series feedback oscillator, as is the case in this experiment, this would be an unstable drive point where oscillation would flip backwards and forwards between the upper and lower parallel points from 3.79Mc down to 2.94Mc. In practise it is possible to wind the tuning from the stable lower parallel frequency below 2.94Mc up through the balanced point and up above 3.79Mc to a stable upper parallel frequency, which is demonstrated as one of the variations in part 2 of the video experiment spanning a frequency range from 2.1Mc up to 4Mc, and back down again.
Fig 5.6. Here the primary tuning capacitor has been further reduced to CP = 124.3pF, and the upper parallel mode is now dominant at 4.07Mc. The series mode remains unchanged at 3.17Mc, and the lower parallel mode is now suppressed at 3.02Mc. In part 1 if the experiment it was difficult to get the GU-5B to oscillate at the upper parallel mode, even given the strong dominance of the upper parallel mode. If we look at the primary resistance at M3 we see that RP significantly increased to ~ 25.7kΩ, which takes it outside of a reasonable match to the anode resistance of the tube. Even by reducing the grid bias to increase the anode resistance the upper parallel mode did not prove to be a stable operating point using a single GU-5B tube, and where considerable power could be coupled from the generator to form discharges at the top-end. In part2 of the video experiment where dual 833C triode tubes were used in place of the single GU-5B, the upper parallel mode could be stably tuned and significant power could again be coupled to the Tesla coil to produce fractal “fern” discharges of a varied nature at 4Mc.
Fig 5.7. Shows the lower limit of operation which could generate even a very small discharge in the video experiment, when the primary tuning capacitor CP was increased to 470.3pF. The lower parallel mode is strongly dominant at M1 @ 2.01Mc, the series mode remains largely unchanged at 3.16Mc, and the upper parallel mode is almost entirely suppressed at 3.66Mc. Below this point the GU-5B could not oscillate and no discharge could be generated at the top-end of the coil. At this point the lower parallel mode is almost 1.2Mc away from the series mode, and considerable increased forward potential from the generator would be necessary to observe even a small discharge at the breakout.
Fig 5.8. For comparison with a fixed door-knob capacitor this result shows the vacuum variable capacitor replaced with a 466.7pF door knob. Positions of upper, lower parallel, and series modes remain largely unchanged. The Q of the resonance is slightly increased by using the door-knob rather than the vacuum capacitor, but otherwise there seems little other advantage to using the door-knob instead of the vacuum variable capacitor, at the currently used generator potential and output power. The door-knob does have a higher voltage rating at 15kV, and this would be significant if running the generator with level shifted output up to 9kV in order to generate longer tendrils in the discharges. Otherwise the vacuum capacitor with a high-Q and 10kV nominal rating is most suited to the variations of tuning that can be accomplished in this experiment.
Overall the small signal input impedance characteristics Z11 for the coil system show good correspondence with the actual operating points, and allow for the accurate selection of required generator drive point, and the necessary impedance matching required to transfer maximum power from the generator to the Tesla coil secondary in the configuration selected for the experiment. The magnitude of the voltage swing the tube can provide across the primary coil has a big impact on the length of the discharge tendrils generated at the top-end of the secondary, and the magnitude of the current the tube can pass through the primary circuit, combined with strong magnetic induction field coupling to the secondary, has a big impact on the strength of the discharge streamers. In this case hot, white, thick filaments from strong primary currents, combined with long tendrils from high top-end potentials are ideal for the observation and measurement of phenomena demonstrating the wheelwork of nature.
Fractal “Fern” Discharges
Figures 6 below show a range of high-definition pictures taken close-up to the top-end of the secondary throughout the experiment. The pictures have been selected to illustrate the range of different fractal forms that are observed in the experiment, and the various features and characteristics that accompany each form variation. All discharge pictures are based on the same scale size, so they can be readily compared for height and width between the various geometric forms. Sequences of pictures were taken on the same operating run, and with the same configuration and tuning of the coil system facilitating direct comparison of each discharge one to the next.
From taking many photographs of the discharges during operation, and looking through them in detail, it is clear that the discharge forms are not just random, but follow various patterns and hence can be grouped together according to their observed characteristics. The images in figures 6 have been collected together to represent the range of different types of discharges observed. Although here only two images of each are shown, there are mostly numerous examples of each form amongst the recorded images. The main observed groups are presented below, but first a consideration of the common features of all of these fractal “fern” discharges:
All of the discharges appear as a self-similar, self-repeating structure that consists of tendrils emerging from either the breakout point as a primary tendril, or a sub-tendril (secondary, tertiary etc.), which emerges orthogonal from the parent tendril. An individual tendril at any level appears to progress from its emergence straight or with minor curve for a reasonable extension, before starting a clearly defined curve towards a centre point, and it could be conjectured would continue in ever decreasing arcs in the form of a spiral, if the plasma discharge within the tendril were able to extend further in the medium. Indeed some of the tendrils have been observed to curve almost 3/4 of a complete revolution at their outer extremity. Emerging tendrils along the length of any parent tendril also appear to emerge at similar proportions along the length of the tendril, when tendrils are compared one to another. Almost all emergence of major sub-tendrils appear orthogonal to the parent tendril, with the exception of very small tendrils that also display some bifurcation particularly, but not exclusively, towards the outer tips of the tendril extension.
In all the discharge pictures the start of the discharge appears to be at the breakout point, and the extinction process of a tendril also appears to support this. This may appear as obvious, but needs to be considered carefully when we take into account the emergence and growth of this patterned discharge. For example, terrestrial lightning has been shown to be a combination of a sky discharge, and a land based streamer extending from the ground upwards to meet the down-coming discharge, which is yet an area of considerable research and exploration. All the tendrils start from a hot-white plasma-like extension indicative of significant RF currents in the discharge which produce a very high-temperature plasma in the core of the tendril. As the tendril grows outwards and the plasma is cooler it takes on the characteristic purple-blue colour of a weaker discharge state. The outer tip of the tendrils often ends in a group of tiny filaments extending outwards along the trajectory of the tendril, often curving with reduced radius to a seemingly invisible centre point at a conjectured centre point.
The major tendrils are wrapped in many tiny orthogonal filaments which are present along the entire length of the tendrils, and most interestingly appear relatively constant all the way back to the very hot emergent point close to the secondary breakout. The filaments very numerous in quantity take on a bluish-purple hue somewhat different to the tip-ends of the tendrils. It appears that the purple of the tip-ends would occur from the diminishing intensity of the tendril far from the source point, whereas the bluish-purple hue of the tiny filaments appears constant along the length of the tendril irrespective of the intensity of the tendril at that point, the filament being only proportional in length to the intensity of the tendril.
As can be observed in the videos the discharge does not sound as an aggressive crack or discontinuous voluminous sound similar to a lightning discharge, but takes on a rather pleasing and peaceful hum that could be likened to a plasma discharge in a spark gap. This peaceful hum implies that the discharge is free of discontinuous breakdown events, where ionisation of the surrounding medium occurs within very short time periods in a random impulse like discharge, but rather as an established quiescent, balanced and stable process that is capable of repeating and regenerating itself from one moment to the next.
In all the images taken of the discharges there are many examples of equivalent geometric proportions, non-symmetric and symmetric pattern formation, sequences of similar geometric forms leading from one to another, (in the limit of the current photography and filming equipment), and the overall impression of a discharge process that is well organised, orchestrated, and manifested, and one that reflects choreographed and regenerative behaviour emanating from an invisible and underlying set of unknown principles and processes. What follows next are the noted recurring yet different geometric forms. To view the large images in a new window whilst reading the explanations click on the figure numbers below.
Tall, Narrow, Curved and Non-Symmetric
Figures 6.1 and 6.2 show this form of discharge where a single central primary tendril curving in any direction at the upper limit of its vertical travel. This form tends to be tall and narrow in width, dominated by a single central tendril, and with smaller other primary tendrils extending out from the base. In this form secondary tendrils emerging from the primary tendrils are usually much smaller, and much less developed than the primary ones. It appears as though the majority of the energy in this discharge is focussed on the primary or root tendril, and enables considerable vertical height to be accomplished, at the expense of not spreading out sideways, or the development of major sub-tendrils. In the experiment operation the major tendril in this form was noted to extend to over 30cm in height from the breakout.
Tall, Narrow, Straight and Non-Symmetric
Figure 6.3 shows an example of this more unusual discharge, in that it was rarely seen in the image sequences. In this case there is again a tall and narrow form, but the there is very little curvature at the end of the main tendril. The main tendril tends to be less developed in sub-tendril detail, and even the tiny filaments seem much less numerous and present along its length. This main vertical tendril tends to come to a sharp and well defined point, without bifurcation or parallel filaments at its outer extremity. Again this form was on occasion measured to over 30cm long. In this particular picture the straight vertical main tendril is accompanied by another well developed tendril to the left which displays all the common elements of most discharge tendril.
Wide, Low, and Symmetric
Figures 6.4 and 6.5 show a group whose form is very distinct and different from those yet discussed, and is in my opinion one of the most beautiful image groups I have yet taken of the fractal “fern” discharge. In this group there is always a very high degree of vertical symmetry from repeating and self-similar patterns that grow out horizontally from the breakout point. Here in this example the symmetry is very well developed between the two primary tendrils that emerge equally left and right from the breakout. Indeed the symmetry is so good that one could almost place a mirror down the vertical axis and reflect either side to the other. The proportions of emergence of sub-tendrils are very similar on all the major tendrils, and also secondary and even tertiary tendrils are much more highly developed than in other groups. The secondary tendrils here are well developed and repeat with high intensity the same self-repeating structure of the parent. Bifurcations at the outer extremities are more numerous in this group, and often the tiny filaments more defined, and more easily distinguished along the length of the tendril.
Furry with Numerous Sub-Tendrils and Filaments
Figures 6.6 and 6.7 show a very interesting group of discharges that appear furry or fuzzy as a result of the numerous mini sub-tendrils, and more numerous tiny filaments along the length of the major tendrils. This is similar to Eric Dollard’s original image which also appears quite furry from the numerous tiny filaments. This “furriness” can appear in any of the other geometric forms and is most easily spotted from the many mini filament between the mini sub-tendrils. Here in figure 6.6 this is observed on a symmetric structure, where 6.7 shows the same characteristics on a tall and narrow structure. Characteristic to this form are also many sub-tendrils that emanate numerously along the length of the major tendril, but also themselves bifurcate often at their tips producing mini fan-like structures. The fan-like structures give the impression of movement or vibration within the form, and helps to illustrate the intricacy and dynamic detail that is present in these fractal “fern” discharges.
Double-Wound “Vortex” Vertical Tendrils
Figures 6.8 and 6.9 show another very interesting geometric group which consist of double-wound tendrils, like a vortex, vertically extending from the breakout upwards, before splitting apart to develop further detail, tendrils, or bifurcations at their upper ends. In figure 6.8 the tendrils spread out at the top and form similar secondary tendrils. In figure 6.9 the tendrils split from the vortex but follow a similar trajectory and form to the outer limits of their extension. This vortex form is most usually tall and narrow, and consists of two primary tendrils of very similar intensity, where sub-tendrils can also be emitted outwards during the vortex stage. This form is often accompanied by tendril symmetry either horizontal or vertical, and most pronounced after the tendrils have split from their wound trajectory.
Figures 6.10 and 6.11 show examples of tendril extinction, so what happens when a fully developed tendril starts to collapse. These pictures appear to support the notion that discharges emanated from the breakout point expand outwards, and when the available energy in the tendril is exhausted the tendril terminates at the breakout point first before extending outwards again as the remaining energy, at a distance from the breakout, is consumed. The extinction of a tendril appears analogous to an exhaust plume after the ignition and burn process, as the plasma collapses along the length there is left a residual ionised trail in the air. The extinction of a tendril is also an interesting process in and of itself as it suggests the question … Why, when a streamer or tendril has been established, would more energy supplied to the top-end of the secondary coil, simply not continue to “pour” through the low impedance channel opened by the tendril in the medium ? I suppose the answer to this lies in understanding the underlying causes of these discharge forms, the guiding principles in the wheelwork of nature, and the specific vibrations that gives rise to the dynamic formation, behaviour, and extinction of these forms.
After now looking at the currently observed geometric forms so far, it is necessary to look also at the temporal sequence of geometric forms. This part of the results and analysis is preliminary, as it could benefit greatly from improved high-speed photography and video equipment in order to observe slow motion video, and photographs with very short time intervals, but is presented here in order to give an idea that there is both a defined temporal sequence, pattern, and I would even go so far at this stage to suggest a “dance” that emerges within the discharge sequence. By “dance” I am referring to repeated and correlated sequences in both the geometric and temporal dynamics of the discharge, rather than a randomly occurring an unrelated collection of lightning like discharges.
Figures 7 and 8 present two such temporal sequences over different time spans, but taken with successive and rapid (for the equipment used) images. Figure 9 shows a side by side comparison of the these sequenced images all together, to give a clearer visual impression of the patterns being referred to. When combined together and compared, a pattern could be conjectured to exist at a geometric and temporal level in these results, although this conjecture would be greatly strengthened when very slow-motion video, and very high speed photography is available. Again all sequences in the following figures are taken on the same scale, in the same operation run, and at the same experimental setup and operation parameters.
Overall from the time sequences it could be conjectured that there is a choreographed “dance” taking place, in this case from the images taken with the current equipment available, that over a time period the dance goes as follows: 1. reach upwards as high as possible – 2. branch out sideways in a symmetric way – 3. bend to the left (or right) – 4. bend the other way – 5. twist around and rotate, before starting the sequence over again. As previously said, high speed video and photography will show if this really is the case, although it is most interesting at this stage in the exploration to even consider that there might be a geometric and temporal sequence to this dynamic discharge process, and another interesting insight in to the possibilities presented by the grand design and the underlying wheelwork of nature.
The final images in this post in figures 10 show a simple preliminary fit of the tendril end curve to the golden spiral rectangle model. As previously shown almost the entire majority of primary and secondary tendrils, (other than those fewer examples in the narrow, tall, and straight group), have a curve at the end of the tendril that appears, if extrapolated, to wind into an ever decreasing radius like a spiral to a centre point. The first section of the tendril is usually straight, either outwards from the breakout point, or orthogonal to the parent tendril before starting to curve gently in a downwards fashion. After a given expansion outwards the tightening of the curve begins, and it is this curve that is interesting to see how closely it adheres to the golden spiral or fibonacci spiral. For this fit two images were selected that are considered to have tendrils that are square on to the camera, that is, they are not rotated out of plane, and hence the curve becomes distorted in the image by perspective. In each of these images the rectangle model for the golden spiral is scaled and added over the top of the images, and fitted if possible to the extent of the visible tendril. The overlay golden spiral rectangle model curve being in blue, whilst the rectangle boundaries are in grey, and the construction guide lines of the rectangles in red and green dotted.
So now that we have reached this point, what do all the experimental results, measurements, and the observed phenomena show us about the wheelwork of nature ? And what can we then say about how to “attach” our machines to this wheelwork ? If we now make a more detailed consideration of the subtle features of the results, and conjecture on both its scientific and philosophical implications, then this may start to become clearer.
The overall nature of the discharge displays a fractal like structure, that is, a seemingly never ending structure where the pattern of any part of the structure is self-similar and repeated across different scales. It can be seen that from any primary streamer or tendril, a secondary tendril emerges which is a smaller copy of the same geometric structure as the primary tendril. In some cases a tertiary tendril can be seen emerging from this secondary tendril, which is again a smaller copy of the same geometric structure as the secondary and primary tendril. It is conjectured that at any scale that the discharge could be observed, the bifurcation of the tendril is repeated with self-similar structure and characteristics in its nature and form.
A fractal is also a mathematical shape with well defined equations, and can be precisely modelled to show its self-similar structure at any scale. Many different forms of fractals are found throughout the natural world, and appear to form a basic building block which repeats its order and structure to form vast and complex macroscopic forms from the smallest microscopic form. This in itself suggests interesting qualities that for me relate to purpose for the wheelwork of nature. The microscopic to macroscopic self-similar geometry suggests that the inner and outer worlds, that is, what you can see, and what you cannot see, are connected and joined as a reflection of one another independent of scale. So we might conjecture that what we perceive in the outer world, is directly reflected within nature’s own hidden world. The law of light and reflection in this case would imply that if we can perceive an event or experience on the outside, then we somehow and somewhere can find that reflected on the inside, as is above is below, as is without is within. If we care to take an objective, open, and considered look at any aspect of nature as a tiny cog in the overall wheelwork, then it is not so difficult or unrealistic to see the correspondences between these inner and outer worlds.
From a philosophical standpoint, what can we not learn about nature’s hidden principles and life in general, from the perspective that the macroscopic is showing us something truthfully reflected to the microscopic ? Is this not a hint as to how to “attach” our experiments and machines to the wheelwork of nature ? I would conjecture and propose that it is, on the basis that principles and mechanisms that we find in our experiments, apparatus, and machines can be corresponded to principles and processes that relate directly to how we sense nature’s hidden world, and that more fundamentally the converse is true, that what we create or destroy in the outer world is only a reflection of the intent, principles and processes going on inside. When we see the correspondence of both the inner and the outer then we establish a synchronicity with the natural order, our tiny cog meshes directly with the wheelwork of nature, and our machines function directly in tune or “tuned into” life’s fundamental processes. So I would propose that, to attach our machines to the wheelwork of nature they must embody basic natural principles and laws, and have a purpose which reflects an intent that is inclusive, life-supportive, and inter-dependent.
Golden Spiral/Ratio Geometry and Proportions
From the results presented in figures 10, it can be conjectured that the curve of the tendrils displays a tentative fit to at least a section of the golden ratio proportion when using the golden spiral rectangle model, for which the ratio between its length and width is the golden ratio in each quarter turn. This model produces a repeating spiral which whilst not truly logarithmic, is a close approximation to the golden spiral. The golden spiral is in principle a logarithmic spiral with a growth factor determined by φ, the golden ratio, and increases in width by the factor of φ for every quarter turn of the spiral. The spiral exhibits self-similar structure in the same way as for the fractal in the previous section, and in principle repeats constantly at the same ratio at any scale from the microscopic to the macroscopic. The golden ratio and spiral is very well explored and documented, at least as a mathematical and naturally occurring geometric structure, and which has been deliberately incorporated into man-made geometric and artistic constructions, where it is said to create an natural, intuitive, and aesthetically pleasing visual proportion.
For me the possible presence of the golden spiral proportion in the discharge suggests that again the phenomena, and the apparatus that has revealed or stimulated this result, is in some way again “tuned into” the wheelwork of nature. It is interesting to note that the designed geometric proportions of the TC system were not designed on the golden ratio either in height to width of the secondary, inter-turn spacing to conductor diameter of the secondary, or in arrangement with the primary proportions and wire. It could be speculated, and it is a speculation at this time, given the lack of any confirmation from direct measurement, that the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction, Ψ and Φ could be related to each other in the golden proportion.
Both induction fields exist in and around the discharge and their relationship itself may be in the golden proportion which in itself determines the path and geometric curve of the streamer. When one considers a wide range of different possible discharges from a TC system, dependent on coil geometry, fundamental resonant frequency, and generator drive method and envelope, it would seem very likely that the nature and structure of the discharge could be strongly dependent on the relationship between the induction fields Ψ and Φ. This is an area that would benefit from a much more comprehensive study into the diversity of structure and form of a TC streamer, its principles, mechanisms, and key causative parameters, along with of course the specific relationship between Ψ and Φ, and how the discharge materially manifests, in energy, space, and time.
Another seemingly small detail to note is the “apparent” direction of growth of the spiral like tendrils. A superficial look at any of the discharges presented in this experiment would easily lead the observer to consider the generator as the source of the tendril, and the surrounding environment to be the sink of the tendril, or in other words the tendril extends from the HT tip at the top of the secondary and grows outwards from this tip into the surrounding environment, its length dependent on the HT electrical pressure from the accumulated charge at the top-end of the secondary. On further consideration of the fractal nature and tentative golden spiral fit, it could be conjectured that the source of the spiral is actually within the microscopic and that the discharge is pulled out of the breakout point and disappears into the hidden inner spiral, or we may even consider it to be a form of vortex. This could be supported by the tendril extinction images where the major tendrils are seen to terminate from beginning through to the end-tip, also lending to the analogy of being called-forth or “pulled” from the experiment, rather than being “pushed” out from the experiment. This conjectured reversal of source and sink brings up interesting possibilities as to the origin or source of the discharge, the process of creation and destruction, and the nature of polarity and potential, all important areas worthy of considerable further exploration and discussion.
Orthogonal Filaments, Disruptive Discharges, and Displacement
Vassilatos gives a most interesting account of one of Tesla’s very early experiences with radiant energy when he observed that a high voltage DC when suddenly applied to an electrical circuit, such as in long cables in power transmission, or when a high voltage DC dynamo was connected to the rails of a railway track with a distant load, it produced a very brief and transitory, “hedge of bluish needles, pointing straight away from the line into the surrounding space”. The important aspects that we consider here from this are that the bluish needles were firstly always orthogonal to the conductor, and that they were only briefly transitionary, that is, until the electrical pressure from the DC source had been distributed across the extent of the electrical circuit.
It is similar arguments and conjectures that I have used for displacement, that this is an underlying guiding mechanism and principle that is ever present within the inner workings of electricity, but is only revealed and hence observable, when a non-linear transient change in an electrical system imbalances the equilibrium of the electrical circuit to such a degree, that displacement must act in order to “accelerate” the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction into their new equilibrium conditions, and in so doing emitting a secondary emanation, or what Tesla called radiant energy. Consideration of the mechanisms and processes involved in what I have termed displacement and transference of electric power appears in many posts on this website, and is introduced in detail in Displacement and Transference of Electric Power.
The correspondence and similarity I make in our current considerations of the experiment in this post, and hence to the mechanism and process of displacement, results from the tiny orthogonal filaments that accompany all of the major tendril activity in the discharges. These micro filaments appear as a “bluish hedge”, and are ever present surrounding the tendrils. It appears from the furry group of discharges that the dynamic nature of the discharge is more agitated, more in motion, and changing on a shorter transient time period. Now, it cannot necessarily be concluded at this early stage of exploration into the wheelwork of nature that the “bluish hedge” is the same in both Tesla’s observation, and in this reported experiment, but it can certainly be speculated on and conjectured that it is the same underlying principle of displacement, resulting from the dynamic transient changes in the relationship between the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction, Ψ and Φ, that is observed in both experiments.
The forward pressure of the discharges, pumped by the generator on successive cycles, charge accumulated at the top-end of the cavity in the secondary coil, and the dielectric induction field magnified to a high-potential at the top-end, all result in an momentary explosive outward pressure in the form of a discharge into surrounding space, a “disruptive discharge” as Tesla called it. This disruptive discharge by its very nature has already unbalanced the surrounding electrical equilibrium of the common medium, calling forth the same guiding principle of displacement that we have been hitherto discussing. The orthogonal filaments or “bluish hedge” are the visible phenomenon of a displacement event, that provides the needed balancing force as the energy in the discharge is absorbed or “sunk” into the surrounding medium, or to conjecture through insight alone, is “sucked” or “pulled” out of the common medium by the spiral-like vortex that exists at the end of each of the active tendrils, and transferred back into the aetheric medium. With the energy of the tendril transferred, the balance of the common medium has been restored, before another explosive and disruptive event begins. Such is the process of displacement of electric power, and of course much work and observation required to confirm or not the validity and scope of the conjectures I am making here.
Vibration, Resonance, and Frequency
In all the variation experiments so far undertaken in this experimental post the only parameter that made a difference to the observed discharge phenomena was the ability to drive the experiment stably at a higher frequency. Resonating at the lower parallel resonant mode the discharge geometry and form where observed to be the same for both the GU-5B, and the 833Cs. At the upper parallel resonant mode the geometry of the discharge was tighter, the tendrils were smaller, more numerous, and with more sub-tendrils, in short the phenomena was more “dense”. However in both upper and lower parallel modes the nature of the phenomena was the same, and it is conjectured that the same underlying principles, and relationship between the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction existed. In other words the vibration of the phenomena and its associated qualities are the same in both cases, whilst the variation of density was brought about by a change in frequency, a specific quantity that reflects one of the parameters of vibration. This now brings about probably the most important distinction that needs to be made in the consideration of this experiment, that is, the differences between vibration, resonance, and frequency.
It should be clear thus far in this exploration that I am referring to vibration as a most fundamental expression of nature, everything has an underlying vibration in life, from galaxies, to suns and planets, to human beings, animals, plants, minerals, to scientific experiments, apparatus and equipment, natural laws and principles, and of course to the very wheelwork of nature itself. In this grand diversity vibration suggests the qualities that together constitute the form to which they are attributed. The very vibration of a collective form determines its purpose, inter-actions and relationships not only to itself but to the common medium surrounding the form, and of course to other forms. It is through the qualities of vibration that any collective form relates to the world around it, and is either attracted or repelled from any other form.
Such is the rich quality of vibration, and the apparatus required to attune to the surrounding vibration powered by the wheelwork of nature. It is through tuning to these vibrations, that we can establish resonance with or between other manifested forms. Resonance then is depicted here as the intelligent cooperation or interaction between at least two forms vibrating with a shared and common purpose. Through resonance potential can be transformed to action, as the voltage accumulated on a capacitor, can be transformed to current flowing in a circuit, and the storage of a magnetic field in an inductor, and back again, as energy is passed backwards and forwards between two electrical components, two forms vibrating together with shared electrical characteristics, qualities, and purpose.
The frequency of the vibration represents only one scalar quantity that is easily measured in this experiment. In the basic experiment the lower parallel resonant mode was at ~ 2.7Mc and this is but one quantity of a quality related to time, that defines the nature of the results obtained here. But it is not enough to characterise the phenomenon entirely by saying, the only parameter that matters in this experiment is the frequency at which the secondary coil was designed to resonate at, so in other words frequency could tell us how but not why! Yes, the frequency of the secondary coil is important, for if another coil is made at say 300kc it will not show the fractal “fern” discharge phenomenon, so rather it is the qualities underlying the 300kc coil that define the vibration of the phenomenon, and hence the nature and the form of the discharge. So the designed and operated frequency of the secondary coil is but one parameter in a set that represents the specific qualities of the vibration that is observed as the fractal “fern” phenomena in this experiment.
The task ahead in working to understand the wheelwork of nature is to reveal, discover, and explain the qualities that underlie any particular vibration, and then to design and develop apparatus that can reflect that vibration in its operation. By doing this we would have attached our apparatus to the wheelwork of nature, and phenomena will be called forth according to the vibration attuned through resonance that we have intended in the purpose of the apparatus. If the purpose of the apparatus is for our own exploration and utility of the world around us, then I could also imply that our apparatus is only a reflection of our own vibration, purpose, and qualities, and hence the circle of life is complete in the acquisition of self-knowledge through discovery, experimentation, and relationship.
Such are my philosophical and esoteric considerations on the wheelwork of nature, but it should now be clear to the reader of this post, that if the wheelwork of nature is to be progressively uncovered or dis-covered, and its unknown secrets to be under-stood and harnessed then we must look beyond the face value of the outer form of our experiments and apparatus, and the single viewpoint that science can reduce the richness and diversity of the great mystery to a simple explanation of the outer form. The outer form is only but the reflection of the inner principles, qualities, and mechanisms that constitute its purpose and place in the inner world. It is this hidden or inner world, or the wheelwork of nature, that we must turn our attention and endeavours to, and in so doing start the long journey to the re-unification of science, philosophy, and the esoteric.
Summary of the results and conclusions so far
In this post we have presented an apparatus and experiment which generates a fractal “fern” discharge, and I have suggested that this form of phenomena is suitable for the exploration of the wheelwork of nature, based on my interpretation of a quote originally made by Nicola Tesla. The fractal discharge presented in both experimental videos has been carefully observed and measured, and a range of conjectures put forward to the signifiance and relevance of the results to the underlying wheelwork of nature being explored. Specifically the experiment has demonstrated, suggested, and conjectured that:
1. The biggest variation in the experiment is frequency, and that even a standard Tesla coil designed and operated over the frequency range of interest, combined with a generator suitable to supply sufficient forward pressure and power to the Tesla coil, will display a discharge in the form of a fractal “fern”.
2. The discharge in this experiment clearly demonstrates fractal like properties, and shows a partial fit in the discharge tendrils to the golden spiral and proportion, despite these proportions or considerations not being included in the Tesla coil or generator design and construction.
3. It is suggested that the fractal “fern” discharge consists of both spatial and temporal order, originating from underlying unknown principles which are conjectured to be directly principles from within the wheelwork of nature.
4. It is suggested that the tiny orthogonal filaments observed along the major tendrils are related to the principle of displacement of electric power, an underlying principle in the wheelwork of nature, and one that also relates closely to reports from Tesla’s own work.
5. It is conjectured that the fractal “fern” discharge phenomena results directly from the relationship between the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction, and this relationship is defined by the underlying qualities of the vibration, which is a part of the principles of the wheelwork of nature.
6. It is conjectured that the scalar quantity of frequency, found as the key dependent parameter so far, is actually only a small piece of an underlying vibration, which is in and of itself, made up of a range of different qualities.
7. It is conjectured that vibration, resonance, and tuning are key to understanding how to attach our apparatus to the wheelwork of nature, and hence become part of a synchronicity that may extend across many levels and layers of existence.
It is clear from these conclusions that this first experiment in the series is a simple departure point, and considerable further experimentation, measurement, and consideration is required to support or refute the conjectures advanced here. Experimentally next key steps would include:
1. A more extensive experimental study with Tesla coils of different resonant frequencies and geometries, which would start to reveal the different types and forms of possible discharge phenomena, and their underlying causative conditions and parameters.
2. Identification of additional variations in the experimental system, and particularly including the relationship between voltage and current in the generator drive and primary circuit, along with the envelope and type of drive waveform, and comparison with different types of generator e.g. a spark-gap generator.
3. Development of a measurement technique to gain a clearer representation of the relationship between the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction during operation of the experiment.
And finally for this first post, high speed photography and video would facilitate a deeper look into the suggested “order” and “choreography” of the phenomena, and perhaps a clearer view of how its vibration and underlying qualities are related to the Wheelwork of Nature.
1. Tesla, N. Experiments With Alternate Currents Of High Potential And High Frequency, An address to the Institution of Electrical Engineers, London, February 1892.
2. Dollard, E. Discharge Experiments using an Integratron, Landers Facility, California, 1990s.
3. Parks Photos. Golden Ratio Overlays, 2015, ParksPhotos
4. Mandelbrot, B. The Fractal Geometry of Nature, W. H. Freeman and Company, New York, 1983.
5. Wikipedia. The Golden Spiral, Wikimedia Foundation Inc., Wikipedia, 2021.
6. Meisner, G. The Golden Ratio – The Divine Beauty of Mathematics, The Quarto Group, New York, 2018.
7. Vassilatos, G. Secrets of Cold War Technology – Project HAARP and Beyond, Adventures Unlimited Press, Illinois, 2000.
8. A & P Electronic Media, AMInnovations by Adrian Marsh, 2019, EMediaPress
9. Dollard, E. and Energetic Forum Members, Energetic Forum, 2008 onwards.
In research using Tesla coils it is inevitable that sooner or later a vacuum tube power supply will become a necessary and invaluable addition to the laboratory equipment. Vacuum tubes when correctly setup and operated are a robust and high power solution to driving Tesla coils from very low frequencies, and to well into the HF frequency band. Most of my experiments are conducted in the 160m amateur band with a centre frequency around 2Mc, and with tuning that can go down as low as 500kc, and up to almost 4Mc. A vacuum tube generator that can be flexibly configured to drive different configurations and types of tubes to power levels over 1kW, and even up to as high as 5kW, opens the door to many fascinating and unusual electrical phenomena, that can be observed and measured using Tesla coils driven at higher powers and higher frequencies. This post is the first in a sequence to look at my own tube power supply, designed specifically with rapid prototyping and Tesla coil research in mind, and is the product of using vacuum tubes of various different types and configurations in my research over the years.
Note: A high voltage supply is capable of delivering voltages and currents, even at lower powers, that are instantly lethal, and that any design and operation of a high voltage unit should be undertaken with great care by a trained and experienced individual. I have so far presented on my website a basic and yet configurable Vacuum Tube Generator based around dual 811A’s, and which has been used in a range of already reported experiments including, Transference of Electric Power, Single Wire Currents, and Tesla’s radiant energy and matter. In this post I start looking at a much more comprehensive tube power supply that I use on a daily basis with a range of different tube boards. I will be looking at the design, construction and operation of the heater, grid & screen supply (TPS-HGS), including a video overview and simple experimental demonstration of its basic operation. More detailed and sophisticated operation will be covered in subsequent experimental posts as I publish them.
Before launching into the details of this supply, I will first give an overview of my complete tube power supply system, and its major components:
1. The heater, grid & screen supply is covered in this post, and provides the filament heater supply to the installed tube board with variable control up to a maximum 12.6V @ 25A, a finely controllable grid bias supply with wide operating characteristics between ±750V DC @ 200mA, or a finely controllable screen or auxiliary bias supply up to 1500V DC @200mA.
2. A high power 5kW plate supply using three 1.8kVA industrial microwave oven transformers, that can be configured in a variety of parallel and series arrangements to provide plate supplies including 2kV @ 2.5A, 4kV @ 1.25A, and up to 6kV @ 800mA. A high voltage 40kV 6A bridge rectifier is incorporated into the design, along with a 12kV rapid discharge unit for safely discharging tank capacitors in the driven circuit. Also internally installed is a 4uF 6kV level shifter to increase the output up to 12kV @ 400mA and 15kV @ 200mA, which is suitable to drive medium power thyratron tubes, such as the 5C22 for pulse and impulse discharge experiments, as well as displacement of electric power experiments. I will be covering the design, construction and operation of this supply in a subsequent post.
3. A dual 833C RF Power Triode tube board with graphite plates and with continuous axial cooling, driven at 4kV plate supply and with a total usable output power of ~ 3.0kW @ 2Mc, and the heater drive is 10V @ 20A AC for both tubes. The graphite plates of the C variant of the 833 tube improve significantly the top-end performance of this tube board by reducing plate to grid flash-over under high-power or poorly matched output conditions. Suitable for displacement and transference of electric power experiments, Tesla’s radiant energy and matter experiments, and including plasma, induction generator, and discharge phenomena.
4. A quad 811A RF Power Triode tube board with continuous axial cooling, driven at 1.2kV plate supply and with a useable output power of ~ 1kW @ 2Mc, and the heater drive is 6.3V @ 16A for all four tubes. This is a very versatile and flexible day-to-day workhorse with lower plate supply requirements, and facilitates a wide range of Tesla experiments as already demonstrated on my website using power up to 1kW.
5. A dual 4-400A RF Power Tetrode tube board with continuous axial cooling, and which is particularly good for high-fidelity musical Tesla coils, and linear amplifier type experiments where modulation and signal purity combined with good output power are required.
6. A dual 810C Power Triode tube board with graphite plates and continuous axial cooling, and which is particularly good for driving lower frequency Tesla coils in the hundreds of kilocycle frequency range, and with good power modulation and signal linearity.
The design, construction and operation of these tube boards will be covered in more detail in subsequent posts, and also operation of the complete tube power supply system as part of experiments yet to be presented on the website. So let us now get on with the tube power supply – heater, grid & screen unit with a video overview of its design, construction, and operation, and including driving a basic experiment using a single cylindrical Tesla coil with a single wire load. The video also demonstrates the use of both the dual 833C and quad 811A tube boards, here used as tuned plate class-C Armstrong oscillators, deriving linear feedback directly from the secondary coil oscillation, and primary circuit tuned to drive the cylindrical Tesla coil at the upper and lower parallel resonant frequencies.
The principle of operation for the heater supply unit is as follows. This supply provides a high current low voltage output to drive the filaments in the tube board when connected in series or parallel arrangements. The internal resistance of the vacuum tube filaments determine the supply requirements without any additional regulation at the supply end. To this effect a 12V 300VA transformer can be adjusted using a variac to correctly bias the requirements of the tube board both in voltage and current. The power rating of the transformer was selected to adequately cover the various tube boards being used, and is capable of a maximum of 12.6V @ 25A. Open circuit the supply provides 15.9V which reduces with increased load, and to the correct filament voltage and current when adjusted by the variac.
A soft-start switch is incorporated to switch a resistive load 50Ω 50W into the primary circuit of the transformer, which reduces the potential across the primary, and hence reduces the secondary output. When vacuum tubes are cold the filament resistance is generally much lower than when in normal operation, and the initial in-rush of current when power is first applied to the filament circuit can easily exceed the maximum safe ratings, which can lead to significantly reduced filament lifetime and premature failure of the filaments in one or more tubes. The ac voltage and current supplied by the heater supply is monitored using an analogue true rms circuit through a DC 1mA ammeter, and a digital 50A AC ammeter based on the potential difference across a 75mΩ series resistance in the output circuit.
The digital ammeter is most effective for setting accurate bias current prior to RF circuit operation. The outputs of the heater circuit are arranged flexibly on the back panel to allow rapid and configurable connection to the tube boards, and including the ability to float the filament supply above the line supply earth. Disconnecting the heater supply from the line earth allows the vacuum tube to be cathode switched, modulated, or “pulsed”, and for the tube board to be referenced to a different “ground” e.g. a dedicated RF ground, or plate supply with high voltage biased negative, (useful for extreme high-voltage thyratron supplies).
The principle of operation for the grid/screen bias unit is as follows. This supply provides a stable unregulated output bias based on the voltage accumulated in a tank circuit, and which can be finely controlled by a high power potential divider to the output. A high-voltage transformer with dual secondary coils rated at 500V each with a total power output of 250VA is adjusted using a variac on its primary circuit. This gives a variable output voltage of ±500VRMS @ 200mA when negative reference is at the centre tap, or 1000VRMS @ 200mA when negative reference is at the bottom-end of the lower secondary coil. The output of the high-voltage transformer is bridge rectified and then accumulated on a tank capacitor circuit consisting of 4 x 560µF 450V capacitors in series. Bleed resistors and a high-power parallel load resistance are provided for rapid discharge of the tank when switched off. The tank is intended to provide a stable DC supply with very low output ripple up to 200mA for grid and screen bias purposes.
To facilitate very fine adjustments in grid bias, which is often very necessary to establish the best operating point for a tube amplifier or oscillator, the output of the tank circuit is fed through a 150W 10kΩ rheostat, which provides continuous linear adjustment of the output across the entire range of the tank voltage. This allows for initial setup of the tube board prior to application of the plate supply, and then variable bias tuning during operation of the experiment. As the bias output is unregulated changes to the experimental conditions will effect required changes to the grid bias and this can be safely and readily applied through the grid bias rheostat. The final result is a very flexible supply that can accommodate a wide range of different tubes and operating conditions. Rapid adjustment of these parameters in a research and development context greatly reduces experimental setup and adjustment time, and facilitates easy tuning to find the most optimum point of operation.
The rheostat fine control is fed from the tank capacitors via two changeover high-voltage relays that switch the output between the upper and lower secondary coils, or across both coils. This allows the output range to be more precisely and safely controlled by selecting just a negative output range, a positive output range, or the entire tank range. This has benefit for example when biasing a tube board in grounded cathode for linear amplifier application. Here the grid bias for a class C linear amplifier is usually in the negative range, so to minimise power dissipation in the grid adjust rheostat, and to ensure that the bias cannot drift into positive voltage with higher risk of tube damage, the output relays are configured to connect only the negative section of the tank circuit across the grid adjust rheostat and hence to the output.
Measurement of DC tank voltage, and output bias voltage is accomplished by a switched series resistance which scales the current into an ammeter up to 1mA. For greater accuracy and scale size the analogue meter is switched either to measure a negative bias potential, or a positive bias potential, by switched reversal of the measurement current through the meter. This series resistance method gives a very good dynamic range of measurement with ranges between 20V DC FSD, and 2kV DC FSD. The process of operating the grid/screen supply requires that the tank voltage first be set to a value higher than is required for the output bias, and then the output bias set through the fine control of the grid adjust.
The switching between these measurements is quickly and easily facilitated by the rotary controls on the front panel of the instrument. The rotary switches are plastic spindle types, which also provide excellent isolation during operation from internal high voltage. It should also be noted that the switched series resistance also has part of that resistance chain in the negative terminal of the output e.g. R14, R15, R16, R17. These resistors prevent current surges between the various output circuits during switching of the measurement ranges, and also inadvertent changes to the setting of the tank output relays when the tank circuit is not discharged. This is particularly important at high tank voltages where switching could otherwise result in large surge currents and destruction of the relays, and other switching components. I discovered this one during inital supply tests, and needed to change both relays and a rotary switch that had burned and fused contacts from a surge at maximum tank setting of 1500V!
Measurement of DC output current is by digital ammeter with 200mA FS. The digital meter is a 200mV FS DC meter which has a 1Ω 2W shunt resistor at the output of the grid adjust rheostat. As for the heater supply, the digital readout facilitates accurate bias adjustment and setup prior to operation of the tube board at RF frequencies. Overall the two supply units are simple in design and construction, and compact and cost effective in materials and components, but lead to a very wide range of operating characteristics, which can be quickly and easily adjusted by a skilled operator during the experimental process.
Figures 2 below show the complete unit with both the dual 833C and quad 811A tube boards installed. The pictures illustrate the compact yet powerful design, and particularly the space saving footprint on the bench. When combined with the 5kW high-power plate supply, the two together form a very versatile and robust tube power supply suitable for a very wide range of Tesla and high-voltage research experiments including, displacement and transference of electric power, Telluric transmission of power, radiant energy and matter, modulated and high-fidelity waveforms, and plasma and discharge phenomena. The same plate supply combined with a specialised 5C22 thyratron board and pulse trigger unit is well suited to displacement of electric power, pulse, impulse, and unidirectional discharge phenomena.
Figures 3 below show the internal layout and construction of the complete heater, grid & screen tube supply. The entire unit is housed in an oil varnished plywood housing, with consideration for cooling, correct line earthing of the appropriate components, internal safety of the high-voltage components and regions, and the external safety of the operator with the various controls when adjusted during the experimental process. As discussed on the video, the choice of a wooden enclosure faciltates easy fabrication and construction, with reasonable thermal properties when fan-cooled, and reasonable external isolation from high-voltage components and regions.
The wooden enclosure does not facilitate grounding and earth connection of certain components, which requires more considered wiring and interconnection of line earth around the internal layout. The wooden enclosure provides no EMI protection either externally to other objects in the facinity, or internally from electric and dielectric fields of induction around the experiment. In a research and development environment in an industrial and isolated setting this is considered acceptable given the often short operation time periods, and minimum interference to surrounding infrastructure.
It can be seen from figures 3 that the overall layout and construction is relatively straightforward. Care with proper positioning and wiring of the high voltage components is very important, particularly in spacing of contacts, the wire type used to connect the high voltage components, and isolation from the user controls on the front-panel. Otherwise a flexible design is possible from a simple circuit, is easy to diagnose and fix if and when a problem occurs, and facilitates a very wide range of experimental conditions that can be adapted, adjusted, and tuned quickly in a research and development prototype setting.
The next parts in this tube power supply series will cover the plate supply, and the individual tube board designs and circuit configurations.
1. A & P Electronic Media, AMInnovations by Adrian Marsh, 2019, EMediaPress
2. Dollard, E. and Energetic Forum Members, Energetic Forum, 2008 onwards.
In this post the cylindrical coil transmission gain S21 is explored using the DG8SAQ vector network analyser. The small signal ac input impedance Z11 has been explored and presented extensively for both flat and cylindrical Tesla coils, and the transmission gain study in this experimental post continues the small signal analysis of this type of Tesla coil. The S21 characteristics show that the Tesla coil has its lowest insertion loss at the fundamental series resonant frequency, and its highest loss at a parallel mode. The series resonant mode remains relatively stable with changing primary tuning characteristics such as number of turns, and variations in the primary tuning capacitor. However, the parallel mode shows strong dependence on both the primary turns and primary tuning capacitor.
A Tesla coil is a passive network element in that it has no active power supply and hence no power gain, so in transmission gain measurements we would expect the maximum gain or minimum insertion loss to be 0 dB in theory. In practise of course there are always losses introduced through various aspects of the system, and the maximum gain will be less than the ideal 0 dB. It is important here to distinguish the difference between power gain and voltage magnification. A vector network analyser measures the reflected and transmitted power between its input and output ports, and hence the resulting scattering matrix reveals the characteristics of the network based on the proportion of power incident at each port. With a suitable calibration this scattering matrix can be converted to a range of different parameters including impedance, component values, as well as gain and loss. So in measuring a Tesla coil as a passive network element the transmission gain will always be less than 0 dB.
The Tesla coil through induction field coupling from turn to turn introduces voltage magnification and charge accumulation across the turns of its secondary coil. This is accompanied by the appropriate reduction of current in the secondary, so the overall power gain of the system remains less than 0 dB. The resulting magnification of the secondary can generate very high potentials at the top-end of the secondary coil, and when combined with a suitable capacitive top-load, accumulation of significant energy when pumped by successive cycles of the generator in the primary. The high tension at the top-end combined with the accumulated stored energy can lead to very significant and spectacular discharges, which in themselves often reflect core qualities of the Tesla coil type and geometry, as well as the type of power supply and operating characteristics (frequency, modulation etc.). A great deal of research and investigation into the underlying nature of electricity is possible by working directly with a Tesla coil that has sufficient magnification to produce a discharge at its top-end, or pump significant power into a single wire transmission medium at its bottom-end.
At first order the transmission gain characteristics of a Tesla coil present as a high-Q bandpass filter typical for a resonant circuit, and where the insertion loss for a direct connected secondary coil is in the region of 4-5 dB at the fundamental series resonant frequency. Direct connection of a secondary coil to the measurement equipment introduces loading to the coil which substantially changes the free resonant frequency of the coil, shifting it downwards by up to ~ 1Mc. In order to measure the free resonant characteristics of the Tesla coil in transmission mode it is more useful to place the output probe a small distance ~ 2-5mm from the top-end conductor, forming a capacitive pickup to the top-end output of the coil. This allows the coil to more freely resonate according to its intrinsic characteristics, but does introduce an additional insertion loss, according the capacitive connection to the probe at the frequency of operation. In this the case the capacitive probe is only 1-2pF which introduces ~ 20dB insertion loss @ 2Mc into the measured results.
At second order the transmission gain characteristics of a Tesla coil present a wealth of interesting detail and phenomena. In this post we explore the S21 characteristics of a cylindrical Tesla coil using the measurement process thus described, compare and contrast the results to the simultaneously measured Z11 input impedance characteristics, and look at the dependence of the transmission gain to different circuit elements, including primary tuning and magnetic coupling coefficient. We also look at an equivalent circuit model that yields well matched theoretical characteristics to those measured, and which assists in understanding the mechanisms contributing to the unusual and fascinating characteristics of the Tesla coil.
The video experiment demonstrates and includes aspects of the following:
1. The experimental setup using the DG8SAQ vector network analyser for transmission gain measurements S21 for a cylindrical Tesla coil.
2. The characteristics of S21 and S11 when the primary tuning capacitor is set to balance the parallel modes on the measured input impedance Z11.
3. The changing characteristics of S21 and S11 when the primary tuning capacitor is adjusted through its full range of 20pF – 1280pF.
4. The changing characteristics of S21 and S11 when the number of primary turns is varied between 1 and 4.
5. The changing characteristics of S21 and S11 when the distance between the primary and secondary coil is varied from 7cm up to 75cm.
6. The series and parallel resonant modes revealed in the transmission gain S21, and their variation dependent on the interaction between, and the electrical characteristics of, the primary and secondary coils.
Video Notes: For clear viewing and reading of the VNWA software measurements, “720p” or “1080p” video quality is recommended, and may need to be selected manually from the settings icon once playback has started.
Figures 1 below show the key measured S21 and Z11 small signal characteristics presented in the video experiment, along with a more detailed analysis and consideration as to their possible origin and effects on the overall properties of the TC. In the presented measurements S21 and Z11 can be identified as follows:
Blue – S21 magnitude in dB, scale 10dB/div, and 0dB reference level at the top of the vertical axis.
Red – S21 phase in degrees, scale 90°/div, and 0° reference at the vertical axis centre line.
Orange – Z11 (from S11) magnitude of input impedance in ohms, scale varies but default is 2500Ω/div, and 0Ω reference at the bottom of the vertical axis.
Green – Z11 (from S11) phase in degrees, scale 90°/div, and 0° reference at the vertical axis centre line.
To view the large images in a new window whilst reading the explanations click on the figure numbers below.
Fig 1.1. Here we see the basic form of the transmission gain S21 when the return probe is connected directly to the top-end final copper turn of the secondary coil. The secondary coil is of course loaded by the 50Ω input impedance of the VNWA which causes the free resonance of the secondary coil, (nominally 1.95Mc in the 160m amateur band with the bottom-end rf grounded, and ~2.25Mc with a 2m wire extension at the bottom-end), to be dramatically reduced in frequency to M2 @ 1.45Mc and with an insertion loss across the complete system of 5dB. Calibration of the VNWA confirmed that insertion loss without the TC was << 0.1 dB.
The form of the transmission gain takes on that typical for a high-Q resonant circuit where at the series fundamental resonant frequency the gain peaks with a quality factor determined by the resistive losses in the system which is dominated here by the series resistance of the secondary coil. From the input impedance characteristics Z11 @ M2 we can see the transformed down series resistance of the secondary coil in the primary RS is 25.8Ω. The phase of the transmission gain around the series resonance at M2 is also typical for the characteristics of the series resonant TC and represents the transition of the secondary from an inductive element to a capacitive element with the corresponding phase shift from +90° to -90°.
In correspondence the characteristics of Z11, here shown in the unbalanced parallel mode condition, shows the fundamental series resonant mode with minimum series resistance in the primary at M3 @ 1.47Mc with RS = 10.4Ω. The correspondence of M2 and M3 is very close here, but not exact. This results from the tuning in the primary which in this case is a very unbalanced condition for the parallel modes in the primary and secondary at M1 and M4. In this case the upper parallel mode at M4 from the primary dominates, which is more than sufficient to skew the characteristics of the secondary coil when coupled to the primary in an unbalanced fashion as demonstrated. In the transmission gain markers at M2 and M3 can be seen to be very close but not exact.
This slight mismatch of the series mode in the primary and secondary would appear to be insignificant, but does lead to interference in the cavity when trying to tune for very high efficiency of transference of electric power in a TMT cavity, and hence instability and loss of selectivity in the tuning process, making it very difficult to sustain the highest efficiency transference of power. Where possible maintaining the parallel modes in optimal balance considerably reduces this instability and facilitates tuning a TMT system to stably transfer high power in a sustained fashion with efficiencies > 99% in the close mid-field region.
Fig 1.2. Shows the effect of moving the return probe from the top-end of the secondary coil to the closely spaced plastic guard ring, shown on the video above the copper shield turn. Removing the loading from the top-end of the secondary coil allows to freely resonant according to its intrinsic properties, and reveals a most interesting second order effect in the overall properties of a TC. The transmission gain S21 now demonstrates both a transmission peak from the fundamental series resonant mode at M2, and a parallel resonant mode at M4 where the impedance of the secondary effectively becomes very high, and no power is transmitted through the coil, rather being stored in the coil instead at this frequency. This parallel mode can be identified as properly a second resonant mode of the coil based on the sharp phase change occurring at M4. In figures 3, later in this post, we look at a simple equivalent circuit model for the TC resonant circuit that demonstrates how this characteristic of a series and parallel mode may arise.
Before going there if we look in more detail at the measured S21 characteristics. Firstly for the series fundamental resonant mode at M2, the maximum transmission gain has shifted back up to that expected for the coil design in the 160m amateur band and bottom-end connected by a 2m extension wire. This series resonance occurs at 2.27Mc and is the minimum input impedance drive point transformed down into the primary RS = 3.9Ω. This input series resistance in the primary is properly the combination of the resistance presented by the primary circuit and the transformed down series resistance of the secondary coil at resonance. This impedance transformation into the primary is based on the square of the ratio of the secondary to primary coil turns, and then scaled by the magnetic coupling coefficient k. If we assume the series resistance of the primary circuit to be exceedingly low << 0.1Ω, then the measured value for RS of 3.9Ω is entirely from the transformed down secondary coil:
Impedance transformation of the TC based on the turns ratio = (NS/NP)2 = (24/3)2 = 64
Series resistance of the secondary at M2 the fundamental series resonant frequency of 2.27Mc = 3.9Ω x 64 x k ~ 67Ω, (where the magnetic coupling coefficient k was determined empirically to be ~ 0.27).
The insertion loss of this series mode has now increased significantly from 5dB to 23.9dB based on moving the return probe from direct circuit connection to capacitive connection at the top-end of the coil. This capacitive connection of 1-2pF introduces an ~ 20dB loss in the transmitted signal that remains constant throughout the rest of the measurements. Empirically we find that the overall insertion loss of the TC, factoring in the loss from the probe proximity, to not have changed significantly and is of the order of 4-5dB. The capacitive probe coupling is an order of magnitude less than the self-capacitance of the TC system, and hence is not expected to substantially influence the measured form of the S21 and Z11 characteristics over the measured band.
By unloading the top-end of the coil and allowing the secondary to freely resonate we have revealed a most important second order effect that relates to a parallel vibration mode in the secondary coil, conjectured to arise from the distributed inter-turn capacitance from the geometry of the coil, and conjectured to instigate the formation of a longitudinal magneto-dielectric transmission mode (LMD), in the electrical cavity of the secondary coil and its extension. In this case the parallel mode at M4 is at a frequency of 3.33Mc and is a real resistance maximum where energy is not transmitted through the TC, but can be stored or accumulated in the coil, and particularly in a top-load if one where connected at the top-end of the secondary coil.
It should also be noted that the parallel modes measured in the input impedance characteristics Z11 have been balanced by adjustment of the parallel tuning capacitor in the primary CP = 552.3pF. The lower parallel mode is from the secondary at M1 = 1.95Mc, and the upper parallel mode is from the primary M3 = 2.71Mc. It remains to be determined if and how the lower and upper parallel modes measured in the input impedance correlate with the parallel resonance mode in the transmission gain secondary. Some consideration of this will be made in the following measurements looking at the dependence, of the both the series and parallel resonant points in the transmission gain, on configurable parameters of the TC system such as the number of primary turns, and the coupling with distance of the primary and secondary coils.
Fig 1.3. Here the primary tuning capacitor has been adjusted to be fully open at its minimum value of CP = 18.6pF. This significantly unbalances the parallel modes in the input impedance Z11 so that the parallel mode of the secondary is now at M1, and the mode from the primary has now shifted off the top of the measured band >> 5Mc. The series mode in the transmission gain, both in frequency and insertion loss, is only very slightly effected to 2.25Mc and 22.8dB. It should be noted that the large imbalance on the input parallel modes introduces a slight misalignment of the series mode in the input and the series mode in the transmission gain, which can be seen in the difference between markers M2 and M3, a difference of ~ 20kc. Interestingly the parallel mode in the transmission gain also remains reasonably constant at M4 3.37Mc, up from 3.3Mc in the balanced condition, a difference of 40kc.
A linear amplifier oscillator would be best tuned to the series mode at M3 for maximum transference of electric power through the TC or TMT system. Although drive point at M2 has a very slightly lower insertion loss in the transmission gain, the input impedance at this point is significantly more than for M3. At M3 the input impedance is purely resistive and represents the best match to the generator in transferring power from the generator to the primary circuit, whereas the impedance at M2 is higher and has an associated reactance, so not a pure resistive impedance at resonance.
Fig 1.4. Here the primary tuning capacitor has been adjusted to be fully closed at its maximum value of CP = 1280.2pF. This again significantly unbalances the parallel modes in the input impedance Z11 so that the parallel mode from the primary now dominates at M1 1.48Mc, and the parallel mode from the secondary is now pushed to the upper mode and heavily suppressed at M4 2.37Mc. Once again the series and parallel mode transmission gain characteristics are only very slightly affected moving no more than 20kc from the balanced condition. It should be noted that the optimal series primary mode drive point has now shifted down to M2, and away from M3 as per the previous minimum CP tuning in Fig. 1.3. The stable drive point for a series feedback oscillator would now be at M1 1.48Mc.
Overall the last two figures have looked at the impact on the transmission gain of the TC by tuning the primary tuning capacitor through it maximum range. It can be seen from the measurements that whilst this has significant import on the input impedance of the TC system, and hence the optimum drive points for different types of generators, it makes only the smallest difference to the series and parallel resonant modes in the secondary coil. This relative independence between the matching and tuning of the primary and secondary modes of the TC, has been well utilised in the Transference of Electric Power experiments, in order to tune the TEM mode for maximum power transfer from the generator to a TMT cavity, and then for LMD mode tuning in the cavity of the TMT between the two TC endpoints. The overall result when both the TEM and LMD modes are tuned optimally in the complete TMT system, is high-efficiency transference of electric power down a single wire transmission medium in the mid-field region, explored and reported so far in High-Efficiency Transference of Electric Power parts 1 and 2.
Fig 1.5. In the next two figures we look at the changes in the transmission gain characteristics with changing number of turns in the primary. Here the primary windings have been increased from 3 to 4 turns, and the TC has been tuned using the primary tuning capacitor to balance the parallel modes in the input impedance Z11. The effect on the series resonant mode in transmission gain S21 is only slight, with the frequency remaining almost completely constant at M2, 2.27Mc. The increased magnetic coupling from an extra turn has reduced the insertion loss from 23.9dB to 21.9dB at M2. The increased magnetic induction field coupling has also intensified the lower and upper parallel modes in the input impedance shifting the peaks to higher impedance, and hence a vertical axis scale shift from 2500Ω/div to 3500Ω/div. However the most remarkable change is in the parallel resonant mode in S21 which has shifted dramatically down in frequency from 3.33Mc in Fig. 1.2 to 2.99Mc, a shift of 340kc.
From our previous discussion we have so far considered the possibility that this parallel resonant mode in S21, that may originate from the distributed inter-turn capacitance of the secondary, is also strongly affected by the distributed capacitance in the primary as well. This leads me to conjecture that the parallel resonant mode in the transmission gain is influenced by the extension of the dielectric induction field from the primary to the secondary, or a capacitive coupling across the turns of the primary and the secondary coil together. If this were the case it would give a more complete view to the transference of electric power across an entire TMT system, and thus far explored in the research currently presented on my website.
For power to be coupled from the generator and through a TMT system via a single wire or Telluric transmission medium to a distant load, it is necessary for the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction to be transferred from source to load, or to extend, albeit in this case incoherently, across the complete system. Power transfer in this regime through induction in a TC requires both the dielectric field extending across the inter-turn distributed capacitance of the primary and the secondary, whilst the magnetic field is coupled between the primary and the secondary coils. Together both induction fields lead to a balanced and equilibrium circuit condition that requires both the TEM arrangement in the primary of the transmitter and receiver TCs, and the LMD mode in the single wire medium of the cavity between the secondary end-points.
Whilst this is purely a conjecture at this time, and relies both on the LMD transmission mode model, and induction field mechanics in the TC transformers, it does appear to me as an interesting and consistent expression of the balance and cooperation required within the inter-dependent relationship formed between the differentiated induction fields at the level of transference. We will see further in figures 3 how the parallel resonant mode in S21 varies strongly according to the distance between the primary and secondary coils, additionally suggesting dielectric induction field continuity between the two coils in the TC system.
Fig 1.6. Here the number of primary windings have been reduced from 3 to 2 and the input impedance rebalanced. The reduction in the magnetic field induction is clear to see in the transmission gain S21. At the series resonant point at M2 2.24Mc, the insertion loss has now increased from 23.9dB to 25.3dB, and the parallel modes in the input impedance characteristics have been reduced as there is reduced interaction between the parallel mode from the secondary and the parallel mode in the primary, (the vertical scale back to 2500Ω/div, and a reduction in parallel mode peak height from Fig. 1.2). The parallel resonant mode of the secondary has remained relatively constant with Fig. 1.2 only having reduced slightly from 3.33Mc to 3.29Mc.
Figures 2 below build upon what has been explored so far, and looks at the transmission gain S21, and the input impedance Z11, as a function of the distance between the primary and secondary coils, and hence on the dielectric and magnetic induction field coupling and continuity between the two coils.
Figs 2.1-2.5. The progression of the coil characteristics over the first 5 figures spans a primary to secondary coil distance from 7cm up to 40cm. The two coils that constitute the TC are moved progressively out of proximity with each other reducing the magnetic and dielectric induction field coupling between the two. The transmission gain peak at M2 starts to shift down slightly remaining a relatively constant insertion loss of ~ 22dB before starting to fall-off at separation distances over 30cm. The S21 series and parallel modes start to move closer together with increasing coil situation, and remains in sync with the progressive narrowing of the parallel modes in the input impedance Z11 at M1 and M3. The phase response of the different resonant modes shifts accordingly and remains consistent with the gradual reduction in the induction field influence between the primary and secondary coils.
Overall when the sequence is observed it is clear to see that increasing the distance between the two coils is reducing the inter-action between the two, gradually separating them from a coupled coil system, to two independent coils with defined individual characteristics. It is interesting to note that the collapse of the coupled coil characteristics reflect changes that can be attributed to both the magnetic and dielectric induction fields. In the Z11 characteristics the two upper and lower parallel modes are gradually moving together in frequency, showing the reduced interaction between two modes at the same frequency, the upper from the primary at M3, and the lower from the secondary at M1. In accordance the series and parallel modes reflected in S21 are also proportionately moving together. The peak in S21 from the fundamental series resonant mode at M2, and the parallel mode at M4.
Figs 2.6-2.8. Show the final stages of collapse of the coupled coil characteristics as the distance between the two coils moves from 40cm to 60cm. Here the frequency axis has been zoomed to span only ~ 900kc, so that the details of the collapsing characteristics can be observed clearly. By 100cm the two coils are fully outside their field of influence, and the coupling of the induction fields between the two coils is insignificant, and the electrical properties of each are entirely dominated by the characteristics of the individual coil, and not by their inter-action. Any attempt to tune or adjust each individual circuit has no effect on the properties of the other. This may seem obvious since there is no-longer any coupling between the two coils, but the extent of the induction field influence is surprising at almost 1m between them, and suggests that the magnetic and dielectric fields of induction have a combined sphere of influence on the electronic properties of electrical elements, that can extend further than either of the induction fields individually.
Figures 3 below consider a simple equivalent circuit of the TC system modelled in LTSpice. The results of the modelling show the voltage transfer gain of the equivalent circuit over the frequency range 1 – 4 Mc. The modelled equivalent circuit reveals surprisingly close correspondence, for such a simple model, to the key features of both the series and parallel modes in the measured transmission gain S21, and especially using the actual measured and derived lumped element circuit values from the cylindrical TC.
The equivalent circuit consist of the following circuit elements:
L1 – The measured lumped element inductance of the secondary coil 350.7µH.
C1 – The total self-capacitance of the secondary coil derived from the fundamental series resonant mode at 2.27Mc, 14.0pF.
R1 – The series resistance of the secondary coil varied by the LTSpice model from 50Ω to 500Ω in steps of 50Ω to illustrate the effect of changing resistive losses on the transmission gain insertion loss, and quality factor Q of the resonant modes.
C2 – An element to represent the distributed inter-turn capacitance of the secondary coil, and including the conjectured extension of the dielectric field of induction across from the primary coil to the secondary coil. 12.2pF was required to model the parallel resonant mode to 3.33Mc, matching the measured parallel mode in the transmission gain S21 results.
R2 – The transformed up primary circuit resistance into the secondary, based on the TC turns ratio 24:3 and the measured magnetic coupling coefficient k ~ 0.27, R2 = 67Ω. This previously derived element value results in an insertion loss of ~ 5dB at the series resonant mode @ 2.27Mc. This matches very closely the insertion loss measured at this point in the S21 results.
Fig 3.1. Here the overall modelled characteristic can be easily recognised as most similar to the measured transmission gain S21 presented throughout this experimental post. The series resonant mode forms a transfer maximum at 2.27Mc and with an insertion loss ~ 5dB. The parallel resonant mode forms a transfer minimum at 3.33Mc and with an insertion loss ~ 73dB. The phase relation switches the model from inductive to capacitive at the series point, and then back to inductive again at the parallel mode. The phase relationship of the transfer gain moves through the complete ±90°. The variation of the series resistance of the secondary coil shows the changes in quality factor Q of the resonant circuit, and collapsing resonant modes with increased resistive losses. For such a simple equivalent model the match with the measured transmission gain S21 is good, and gives some insight into the nature and mechanisms of the Tesla coil under these conditions.
Fig 3.2. A zoomed view of the series resonant mode reaching a maximum at 2.27Mc, ~5dB insertion loss.
Fig 3.3. A zoomed view of the parallel resonant mode reaching a minimum at 3.33Mc, ~73dB insertion loss.
Fig 3.4. Here C2 has been removed, all other aspects of the equivalent circuit remain the same. This illustrates the effect on the transfer gain by removing the element for the distributed inter-turn capacitance, or that which is conjectured to form the parallel resonant mode, and which has most contribution to the formation of the LMD mode within the cavity of the secondary coil. The results show that the parallel mode is no-longer present, and this element is required to form the parallel mode characteristics in the coil. This suggests that the dielectric induction field is no-longer coupled across the windings of the coil, including across the windings from the primary coil to the secondary coil. The series mode resonance is not affected by this change showing how the parallel and series resonant modes, whilst stemming from the same coil geometry, have a relative degree of independence in the results, something that has also been noted in the experimental tuning and matching of the TEM and LMD modes for high-efficiency transference of electric power.
Fig 3.5. A zoomed view of the series resonant mode reaching a maximum at 2.27Mc, ~5dB insertion loss.
Overall the simple equivalent lumped element model shows interesting correspondence with the actual measured transmission gain, and helps to suggest and confirm the possible mechanisms involved in the formation of the series and parallel modes in a TC system. This model could obviously be developed to a much higher order, and it would be interesting to explore the modelled results for a complete TMT system, involving two matched resonant circuits, corresponding series and parallel mode splitting, and also the required elements necessary to represent the single wire transmission medium, if this is indeed possible in a linear Spice type model.
Summary of the results and conclusions so far
We have experimentally explored the transmission gain S21 for a cylindrical Tesla coil, compared and contrasted the results to Z11 (from S11) the input impedance of the TC, and found that the series and parallel resonant modes are both present within the system in both sets of measurements. A simple equivalent circuit model appears to support the understanding of how the series and parallel modes form, and their relative inter-action and inter-dependence or otherwise to each other. We have conjectured that the dielectric induction field is coupled across inter-turns of the primary and secondary coils, as well as between the primary and the secondary coil, and that indeed the complete picture of the Tesla coil requires both magnetic and dielectric induction to yield the fascinating and unusual phenomena demonstrated by TC and TMT systems.
When viewed as a whole system together both from S11 and S21 the TC is an induction transformer that extends both the magnetic and dielectric fields of induction from the primary to secondary. This is a most important point of consideration because it suggests that the very highest efficiency in the transference of electric power can be accomplished where the induction fields are in equilibrium and balance across the entire electrical system. If it is a TMT system that we are considering, then the highest efficiencies of transference take place when balance and equilibrium are established (tuned) for both the magnetic and dielectric fields of induction, extending all the way from the generator to the load, and both in the TEM mode in the two sections of the system, and in the LMD mode in the single wire and cavity sections of the system. The correct balancing and tuning of both modes allows maximum power to be transferred between source and load.
The analogy is to consider the TMT system as a tubular waveguide, or a pipe, between the source and load. In carefully balanced equilibrium the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction can propagate through the waveguide without experiencing discontinuous and abrupt changes in impedance of the waveguide, (the waveguide is not narrowing or widening along its length). In the LMD transmission model, the mode of transmission is being transformed from the TEM case to the LMD case, and where the waveguide transforms from a twin wire guide to a single wire guide. In the twin wire section the induction fields are in temporal phase but not spatial phase, where as in the single wire case the induction fields are in spatial phase, but not temporal. This phase temporal and spatial reversal and realignment between the mode transformations is for me the key to obtaining the highest transference of electric power in the TMT system.
Ultimately the case could be considered where the dielectric and magnetic fields of induction are coherent both spatially and temporally across the entire TMT system, from source to load through a balanced waveguide. This would lead to a coherent induction field condition where the magnetic and dielectric fields of induction are differentiated but coherent with each other, a condition for me that belongs to the principle of Displacement. Currently the most established macroscopic demonstration of this principle occurs in the field of superconductivity, where the magnetic and dielectric induction fields are differentiated but coherent across the material system, due to cooperation between the electronic and mechanical properties of the material. I conjecture that the inner workings of electricity are completely permeated with this coherent state of Displacement, both as a principle and a mechanism, of inclusive and coherent electric inter-action.
Of course this coherent state probably goes far beyond the basic electric properties of a system, but could be conjectured to be the next inner layer of the hidden, and underlying fabric of nature. Often referred to in the New Science or Alternative Energy fields as the “aether” or “aetheric field”, an amorphous energetic “field”, that is seemingly just outside material manifestation. It is claimed by some that this energetic field can be tapped through the correct principles and mechanisms applied to our experimental apparatus, and called-forth under specific conditions of coherence and particularly through non-linear events; the result of such conditions include, energy injection, and coherent phenomena that result in regenerative action, over-unity gain, and macroscopic coherence over vast spatial distance.
My own research work looks to progressively reveal the inner-workings of nature and these coherent phenomena, through exploring the principle of Displacement and Transference in electrical systems. This work proceeds through the inclusive union of high quality scientific experimentation, impeccable measurement, and considered conjecture in the outer world, and the inner quest for knowledge about my-Self, the hidden underlying wheelwork of nature, and our part within the great mystery of life.
1. A & P Electronic Media, AMInnovations by Adrian Marsh, 2019, EMediaPress
2. Dollard, E. and Energetic Forum Members, Energetic Forum, 2008 onwards.
In this second part on high efficiency transference of electric power, we take a look at the characteristics and power efficiency of a cylindrical coil TMT system where the transmitter and receiver coils are spaced further apart in the mid-field region. In this experiment a single wire transmission medium 11m long is used to separate the coils into different rooms at the laboratory, and a remote camera is used to observe the power at the receiver load measured by an RF wattmeter. Transference of electric power over 11m, and the characteristics of a TMT system coupled by the LMD mode at this distance, is shown to be remarkably different from the close mid-field region, and requires a very different setup and configuration of the experimental apparatus in order to optimise the efficiency of power transfer up to 96%.
In the close mid-field region with a 2m single-wire in the previous experiment on High-Efficiency Transference of Electric Power, the maximum transfer efficiency was achieved when the TMT system was configured, tuned, and operated at the point where the parallel modes were balanced, and the generator was optimally impedance matched to the system. It was conjectured that this balance contributes to maximising the power transferred from the generator to the twin-wire primary circuit TEM mode, to the single-wire LMD mode within the cavity formed between the transmitter and receiver secondary coils, and back to the twin-wire primary circuit TEM mode to the load.
In the mid-field region with an 11m single-wire we will see that this balanced mode setup leads to a maximum efficiency of ~40%. It is demonstrated that it is necessary to significantly mismatch the balance between the transmitter and receiver coils in order to get the LMD mode to extend across the single-wire transmission medium and restore transfer efficiency to over 90%. Transmitter and receiver primary circuit mismatch is mainly used to restore the transfer efficiency, along with fine adjustment through generator to TMT system TEM mismatch, measured at a range of Standing Wave Ratio (SWR) of 1, π/2, φ (the golden ratio), and 2.
The video experiment demonstrates and includes aspects of the following:
1. Small signal ac input impedance Z11 for a cylindrical coil TMT system in the mid-field region, and connected via an 11m 12AWG single wire transmission medium.
2. Z11 balanced parallel mode impedance measurements, for a reciprocal TMT configuration with 3 primary turns and matched primary capacitor tuning.
3. Z11 unbalanced parallel mode impedance measurements, for a non-reciprocal TMT configuration with 4 transmitter primary turns, 2 receiver primary turns, and mismatched capacitor tuning.
4. Transference of electric power from the linear amplifier generator to a 500W incandescent lamp load at the TMT receiver output via the reciprocal TMT configuration, and with a measured efficiency around 40%.
5. Transference of electric power to a 500W incandescent lamp load at the TMT receiver output via the non-reciprocal TMT configuration, and with a measured efficiency of up to 96%.
6. Demonstration of the high tension and associated discharge that can be drawn from the high-end of the receiver secondary coil, via the 11m single wire.
7. Transference of electric power efficiency measurements up to 96% (90% average) at 400W dissipated load power (peak 500W), in the 160m amateur radio band at 2.01Mc, and via an AWG12 single wire 11m long between the TX and RX coils.
Video Notes: The receiver power meter reading is shown on the inset video in the top right corner. For clear viewing and reading of the inset meter readings, and the VNWA software measurements, “720p” or “1080p” video quality is recommended, and may need to be selected manually from the settings icon once playback has started.
The experimental system circuit diagram, followed by an overview of the linear amplifier generator components is available here.
Figures 1 below show the key small signal input impedance characteristics Z11 presented in the video experiment, along with a more detailed analysis as to their impact on the observed and measured experimental results.
Fig 1.1. Shows the balanced and reciprocal input impedance for the cylindrical TMT system with 11m single wire transmission medium. The parallel modes, at markers M1, M2, M4, and M5, are balanced in the normal way by adjusting the primary tuning capacitors at both the transmitter and the receiver. The fundamental series resonant frequency M3 @ 2.02Mc has a series resistance RS = 11.3Ω, and is the primary drive point for the linear amplifier generator used in the experiment, with fine tuning around this point established at 2.01Mc as the optimum point. The parallel modes, one from the primary and one from the secondary, for both the transmitter and receiver coils are balanced, and show the frequency splitting that occurs when resonant modes of a very similar frequency are coupled together.
This form of impedance characteristic has been very well covered before in many posts on the website, and is discussed in detail in Cylindrical Coil Input Impedance – TC and TMT Z11. Previously these characteristics have been studied in the close mid-field region, typically with a single wire in the region of 1.5-2m long, or at least 2-3 times the diameter of the secondary coil, (0.5m in the case of the cylindrical TC). In this region the coupling between the transmitter and receiver coils, via the single wire transmission medium has been shown to be significant and the parallel modes split up to 200kc apart in frequency, as can be seen here. Within the split parallel regions there is a well defined and distinctive phase change from the extended series mode. The extended series modes, both upper and lower, can also be used as drive points for a linear amplifier generator, although the series resistance at these points is higher than the fundamental series mode, and ultimately will couple less total power from the generator through the TMT system.
With the single wire now extended to 11m in the mid-field region it can be clearly seen in this impedance scan that the coupling between the parallel modes of the transmitter and receiver has reduced, the frequency split is less at 30kc, and the extended series mode phase change is only just defined between markers M1-M2 and M4-M5. The fundamental series mode remains dominant at M3 and is the optimum drive point for linear amplifier generator. Overall the transmitter and receiver coils are coupled together by the single wire transmission medium in the TEM mode, but the coupling is reduced from the close mid-field region, and the additional impedance of the longer single wire is transformed back through into the transmitter primary and reflected in the increased series mode resistance at M3, RS = 11.3Ω.
Fig 1.2. Shows the effect of adding a 500W incandescent lamp load at the receiver primary coil output. The transmitter primary tuning capacitor CPTX has been adjusted from 663pF to 711pF in order to balance the transmitter parallel modes. The receiver primary tuning capacitor CPRX remains the same at 793pF. The resistive and inductive loading presented by the high-power incandescent lamp at the receiver has significantly changed the operating characteristics of the TMT system from a well balanced cavity, to a strongly unbalanced cavity, at least in terms of the TEM input impedance Z11.
The parallel modes of the receiver coil have been almost entirely suppressed with only a very slight presence at M3, and the overall resonant circuit properties of the receiver distorted and skewed away from the reciprocal coil characteristics of the unloaded receiver TC, to the characteristic shown at M3. It is important to note that this huge imbalance in the receiver end of the cavity in both the TEM mode, and I would conjecture the LMD mode due to the definite and distinctive change in the parallel modes, leads to a setup in this experiment where the transmitter end also needs to be unbalanced in order to reestablish the maximum efficiency in the transference of electric power. It is conjectured and discussed later that the setup change to the transmitter establishes a balance again in the LMD mode in the cavity when the total effect of the receiver and the longer single wire are taken into account together.
The fundamental series resonant mode has shifted down very slightly to 2.01Mc, RS = 13Ω, which was found to be the optimum drive point for the linear amplifier generator during the tuning and setup part of the experiment prior to the video experiment itself. The balanced reciprocal setup shown in figures 1.1 on this page, and 2.1 here , which was so effective in the close mid-field region, is shown to yield a maximum power transfer efficiency of now more than 35-45%. It is clear that the coupling introduced by the single-wire transmission medium and the impedance that this presents to both the TEM and LMD mode is critically important in both the setup and operation of a TMT system over distance.
Fig 1.3. Here the setup of the transmitter and receiver has been changed from that of the balanced reciprocal cavity condition, which yields power transfer efficiencies no higher than 35-45%, to the seemingly mismatched characteristic that yields measured transfer efficiencies up to 96% in the experiment. This setup requires the transmitter primary turns to be increased from 3 to 4, and a significant increase in the primary tuning capacitor CPTX = 1206pF. In correspondence, the setup of the receiver primary turns is also decreased from 3 to 2, and the primary tuning capacitor is significantly reduced to CPRX = 146pF. In this setup the input impedance Z11 for the TEM mode appears highly imbalanced, however for the LMD mode it is conjectured that a strong coupling and balance is re-established.
The fundamental series resonance at M3 has again only shifted very slightly in frequency to 2.0Mc, as the wire length of the experiment, the biggest contributor to this mode, remains constant, and with an increased series resistance RS = 22.8Ω. This still represents the best generator drive point for this experiment, with the lowest series resistance, and maximum coupling to the both the series and parallel modes that are active in this configuration. Transmitter parallel modes at M1, M2, and heavily suppressed around M3 and M4, are shifted quite considerably by the primary tuning capacitor mismatch. The dominant parallel modes, and hence conjectured to contribute most strongly to the LMD mode in the cavity, are now at M1 and M2 and involve both the transmitter and receiver, which will become apparent in the next figure. It should be noted that this figure is on a vertical magnitude of impedance scale of 4kΩ, whereas the previous figures where set to 1.5kΩ. This emphasises the very strong lower parallel modes and suggests that the transmitter pump action, from the generator to the LMD mode in the cavity, has been preferentially increased at this lower frequency of 1.2Mc.
The reduction in the primary setup at the receiver appears to have loosened the coupling between the primary and secondary coils of the receiver, which in turn has increased the Q of the free resonance in the secondary coil, increasing the phase change at M3, and emphasising the receiver characteristics transformed across the single wire cavity back to the transmitter. In short it appears like the LMD pump action into the cavity has been increased, whilst the Q of the receiver has also been increased. It is conjectured here that this combination of effects re-establish a balanced condition for the LMD mode, and hence a low impedance path for this mode across the cavity. With the LMD mode established across the cavity the efficiency of power transfer is pushed right back up to 95+%. Losses in the TEM mode are clearly increased with the longer single wire, but it is conjectured this is not the case for the LMD mode which is coherent spatially but not temporally over the entire cavity.
The split in frequency between the fundamental series mode at M3 and the upper extended series mode at M4 is now only 80kc, which is a very different condition than that which occurs in the balanced non-loaded mode. This close correspondence between these series two modes at the transmitter and receiver suggests part of the mechanism that allows very high-efficiency transference of electric power, where power is coupled from the primary to the secondary and hence into series modes to parallel modes, and then back through parallel modes to series modes at the receiver, a transformation across the TMT system from TEM to LMD and back to TEM mode in the load. Ultimately real power is passed from the generator through to the load which requires the TEM mode in both primary circuits, and the LMD mode as a result of the combined LM and LD modes across the cavity of the TMT.
Fig 1.4. Here we see a zoom of the peak of the dominant parallel mode from the previous figure at M1 and M2. Very interestingly we see that this peak is actually split into two peaks, suggesting two parallel modes that are dominant in both the transmitter and receiver but very weakly coupled. This now sets up the condition that we have two parallel modes separated by only ~ 1kc, and two series modes separated by only 80kc, from both the transmitter and receiver. I conjecture that it is this combination of series and parallel modes at each end of the TMT that makes it possible to yield very high-efficiency transference of electric power in this TMT system with a longer single-wire.
So what appears to be a loaded and unbalanced setup actually yields a TMT system that is balanced and matched for both the TEM and LMD modes combined. From a TEM perspective of the input impedance Z11 this appears to be heavily loaded and biased towards the transmitter, but on closer inspection and analysis suggests a configuration that balances the system between transmitter and receiver for maximum efficiency, minimum impedance for power transfer, and optimal conditions for the 500W incandescent load used in the experiment. Fine tuning of this configuration was further demonstrated by introducing a non-zero reflection coefficient from the transmitter primary circuit to the generator. This was accomplished by progressive adjustment of the antenna tuner away from the optimum SWR of 1.0, increasing up to 2.0. A standing wave ratio of π/2 to φ (the golden ratio) were found to increase the efficiency slightly making the difference between a stable 90% efficiency up to a maximum in this experiment of 96%.
It is suggested here that the TEM mismatch at the transmitter primary circuit is a method of fine tuning the balance of the circuit for the TEM and LMD modes combined. The balance between these two modes, and hence the energy coupled into and between these modes, and across the complete TMT system and cavity, appears to have the most impact on the power transfer efficiency.
Summary of the results and conclusions so far
In this post we have experimentally observed high-efficiency transference of electric power sustained at 90%, and with fine tuning and adjustment up to a maximum of 96% with an estimated error of ±1%. The power was transferred using a cylindrical coil based TMT system, where the transmitter and receiver are coupled by an 11m single wire transmission medium. 400W of power could be stably passed from the linear amplifier generator to the incandescent load at maximum transfer efficiency (90-96%), and up to 500W was tested at a reduced efficiency ~85%. From the experimental results and measurements presented the following observations, considerations and conjectures are made:
1. The “ideal” balanced reciprocal cavity setup, optimal in the close mid-field region, is not efficient for optimum power transfer in the more distant mid-field region, and most specifically when driving a heavy load at the receiver output.
2. An unbalanced TEM setup at the transmitter and receiver coil appears to restore the overall combined balance of the TEM and LMD modes across the entire TMT system restoring the high-efficiency power transfer characteristics in the mid-field region.
3. The unbalanced TEM setup appears to increase the LMD pump action into the cavity, whilst the Q of the receiver has also been increased by loosening the primary receiver coupling. It is conjectured here that this combination of effects re-establish a balanced condition for the LMD mode, and hence a low impedance path for this mode across the cavity.
4. The Z11 impedance characteristics in the unbalanced setup and when loaded at the receiver with a 500W incandescent lamp show a fine split between the series modes and the dominant lower parallel modes, which appears to show the transmitter and receiver coupled together in both the TEM and LMD modes
5. This close correspondence between these modes at the transmitter and receiver suggests part of the mechanism that allows very high-efficiency transference of electric power, where power is coupled from the primary to the secondary and hence into series modes to parallel modes, and then back through parallel modes to series modes at the receiver, a transformation across the TMT system from TEM to LMD and back to TEM mode at the load.
6. The maximum transfer efficiency could be fine tuned by mismatching the generator to the primary transmitter circuit and hence creating a reflection coefficient in the transmitter part of the system. SWRs in the region 1 to 2 were tested, with the best results around π/2 to φ (the golden ratio).
7. It is suggested, but needs considerable further work to develop, that the impedance presented by the single-wire transmission medium to the LMD mode is not the same as that presented to the TEM mode, and where a narrow single wire to the limit of the skin depth would appear as a high impedance at the driving frequency to the TEM modes, this is not the case for the LMD modes. For the LMD modes (LM and LD) the single-wire appears as a low impedance monopole waveguide which is spatially coherent over the extent of the cavity.
This experiment has opened up a range of interesting questions that need further consideration and considerable investigation to answer and progress, and most particularly from conclusion 7; to understand and establish in more detail the impedance presented by a single-wire transmission medium to the LMD mode generated in the cavity. It would also be interesting to compare the single-wire to a Telluric transmission medium, which will be the focus of the next experiment in this series. This experiment will look at transference of electric power over a 40m single-wire where the transmitter and receiver are in separate buildings of the lab, and also to compare the measured performance to a Telluric connection between the two via a basic ground system at each end.
1. Tesla, N., Colorado Springs Notes 1899-1900, Nikola Tesla Museum Beograd, 1978.
2. A & P Electronic Media, AMInnovations by Adrian Marsh, 2019, EMediaPress
3. Dollard, E. and Energetic Forum Members, Energetic Forum, 2008 onwards.