Tesla Nikola

Tes·la

 (tĕs′lə), Nikola 1856-1943.
Serbian-born American electrical engineer and physicist who discovered the principles of alternating current and invented numerous devices and procedures that were seminal to the development of radio and the harnessing of electricity.

Tes·la

(tĕs′lə), Nikola 1856-1943.
Serbian-born American electrical engineer and physicist. He discovered the principles of alternating current (1881) and invented numerous devices and procedures that were essential to the harnessing of electricity and the development of radio.
Biography In 1886, when Nikola Tesla went to work for George Westinghouse's electrical company, most commercially generated electricity was distributed over a direct current (DC) system. Such a system was very expensive to maintain, in part because much of the electricity was lost to resistance and wasted as heat in the wires. The alternating current (AC) system Tesla invented could be transmitted over very long distances through the use of transformers, and was cheaper and easier to maintain than the DC system. Tesla gave public demonstrations of electricity to ease peoples' fears about the safety of the system (even having currents passed through his body to ignite flames). Tesla's invention of motors and generators to use with the AC system helped ensure that it would rapidly replace direct current throughout the country.