Tesla's Electrical Condenser

Wednesday, September 23, 1896
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septmba 23, 1896 ELECTRICAL REVIEW Tesla’s Electrical Condenser. The following is the inventor’s own description of his electrical condenser, for which patent was issued Septem- ber 15, 1896: Be it known that I, Nikola Tesla, a citizen of the United States, resid- ing at New York. in the County and State of New York, have invented certain new and useful improvements in electrical condensers, of which the following is a specitication, reference being had to the drawings accompany- ing and forming a part of the same, It has heretofore been announced and demonstrated by me that, under ordinary conditions, the eliciency of an electrical condenser is greatly in- creased by the exclusion of air or gaseous matter in general from the dielectric. In a patent granted to me December B, 1891, No. 464,661 I have shown and described a con- venient and practicable means of accomplishing this result by immers- ing the conducting plates or arma- tures of the condenser in an insulating fluid, such as oil. My present invention, while based upon this important feature of the practically complete exclusion of air or gas from the dielectric, is an im- 1 li n SECTIONAL View or 'ras Tr-:sts Counsivssn. provement on the forms of condenser heretofore described and used by me. According to my present invention, I employ an electrolyte, or, in general, a conducting liquid in lieu of a solid. as the material for the armatures of the condenser. under conditions more fully hereinafter described, whereby air or gas will be practically prevented from exercising upon the condenser or the more active portions of the same, the detrimental elfects present in such devices as heretofore made. Such condensers are especially ad- vantageous when used with circuits of great rates of electrical vibration. because of the high conducting capacity of such Huids for currents of this character. There is, however, a general advantage derived from the fact that the conducting fluids have a high specific heat, so that the tem- perature remains constant, a condi- tion in many cases highly advanta- geous, and not met with in condensers of ordinary construction. In the accompanying drawings, an- nexed in illustration of the manner in which my improvement is or may be carried into practice, Fig. 1 is a view partly in vertical section of a condenser constructed in accordance with the invention. 151 Fig. 2 is a part vertical section of a modified form of such condenser. A designates a jar or receptacle partly or wholly of conducting mate- rial. and provided with a closely dtting cap or cover B, preferably of insu- lating material. Within this receptacle is a smaller jar or vessel C, of insulating material. containing a conducting electrode D, supported by the cover B, through which passesa suitable terminal E, which may be incased in an insulating plug P. The spaces within the jars or re- ceptacles are nearly lilled with a cou- ductiug liquid F. G. such as a saline solution, the two bodies of such liquid, in the inner and outer receptacles, constituting the condenser armatures. Above the conducting solution in each of the receptacles is poureda layer of oil or other insulating liquid, which serves to prevent access of air to the highly charged armatures. The terminals for the two arma- tures may be provided in various ways, but in such forms of condenser as that illustrated, I prefer to utilize the conducting portion of the outer receptacle as one terminal, securing a binding post to the same as at H, and to employ an electrode D of suitably extended surface immersed in the liquid of the inner receptacle and in electrical connection with the binding post E. It is desirable in some cases to mod- ify the construction of the condenser, as when a larger capacity is required. ln such instances, in order to secure the substantial benefits of the im- provement above described, I con- struct the instrument as shown in Fig. 2. In this case I employ a jar or recep- tacle A, which is preferably used also as one terminal, and filled with a conducting liquid, as beforef Into the latter extends a series of connected conductors K, inclosed and fully insu- lated from the liquid by a coating of such material as gutta-percha R. These conductors are electrically joined to a terminal E, which extends up through the cover B, and consti- tute one of the armatures of the condensers. On the surface of the electrolyte or conducting liquid is poured a quantity of oil L, for the purpose above stated. While I have illustrated the inven- tion in its preferred form for general practical purposes, it will be under- stood that, without departure from the invention, its construction may be greatly varied and modified. What I claim is: 1. In an electric condenser con- structed or provided with means for the exclusion of air and gas, an arma- ture composed of a conducting liquid, as herein set forth. 2. A condenser comprising as arma- tures two bodies of conducting liquid electrically insulated, and contained in a receptacle from which air and gas are excluded. 3. A condenser comprising two bodies of conducting liquid e ectric- allgv insulated and contained in a receptacle, and a seal of insulating liquid on the surfaces of the liquid, as set forth. In testimony whereof, I have here- unto set my hand this 15th day of June, 1896.