Here are some facts about Nikola Tesla.
- Nikola Tesla was an Austrian born inventor, physicist and engineer. He is best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electricity supply system.
- He was born in 1856 in Smiljan, Croatia.
- Tesla attended college in Graz, Austria, often studying for over 16 hours a day. He avoided being drafted into the army by running away and hiding in the mountains.
- In 1882 he worked installing incandescent lighting in Paris. In 1884 he emigrated to New York, working in Thomas Edison’s factory, helping to develop a high voltage street lighting system.
- In New York, Tesla stayed in different hotels, often without paying the bill. He fed pigeons from the window and spent a large amount of money on a device to help a wounded pigeon return to health.
- Nikola Tesla created his own electric lighting company in 1885. He patented over 100 inventions for AC electricity devices and technology, often competing against Thomas Edison.
- Tesla invented a steam powered generator. He also devised a remote control radio device, carried out research into X-rays, and suggested providing free electricity to everyone.
- One of Tesla’s most important inventions was the Tesla Coil, a device used in radio transmitters. Today, this electrical device is still widely used in radio technology.
- Tesla was concerned about the environment, as well as the quality of life, and later in his life became a vegetarian. He was also obsessed with the number three, and apparently he had a fear of touching people’s hair.
- Nikola Tesla died in New York in 1943. His ashes are contained in a round box which is on display in the Nikola Tesla Museum in Belgrade, Serbia.
- The Nikola Tesla award was introduced in 1975 for contributions to electricity use. Tesla also has an airport, a planet, a crater on the moon and over 100 streets named after him.
What next? Discover some facts about other famous inventors.