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Hi, I am William Morgan with About.com and today I am going to tell you about Nikola Tesla. Nikola Tesla was one of America's greatest inventors. He was a contemporary of Thomas Edison, a man who was his employer and later became his chief rival.Tesla was born on July 10, 1856, in Croatia. He was the fourth of five children born to a Serbian Orthodox priest. Tesla's mother was a homemaker who would often invent things that would help around the home and farm. He studied at the Realschule, Karlstadt in, the Polytechnic Institute in Graz, Austria and the University of Prague.Tesla arrived in the United States in 1884 with little money and an introduction letter to Thomas Edison. Through 1886-88 he began investigating some of his most notable inventions such as the initial brush less alternating current induction motor, practical applications for x rays, and the principles of his Tesla coil. On the 30th of July 1891 Tesla became a citizen of the United States. He was 35 years old. In the next few years Tesla set up two laboratories in New York.Perhaps what Tesla is most known for is his battle with Thomas Edison in what was called "The War of Currents." Edison believed in Direct Current flow which was limited in its distance and voltage compared to Tesla's alternating current, which would increase voltage levels across greater distances than Edison could dream. In 1893 Tesla and his sponsor, Westinghouse, beat Edison in lighting up the Colombian Exposition in Chicago, giving Tesla a chance to show the public the advantages of AC electricity. Tesla became victor of "The War of Currents."Tesla came to believe that a world system could be built that would transmit electricity without wires. The earth itself would be the conductor of electrical current. Current would be transmitted between two points. Electrical devices between these points could draw on the current from the earth and air.On January 7, 1943, Tesla died at the age of 86 of coronary thrombosis. He had never been married. He spent his whole life inventing and discovering. After he died it was found out that Tesla had held over 700 patents. Thanks for watching. To learn more visit us on the web at About.com.
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