Sbarc Lecture

…the present electrical form. I'm also going to try to attempt to show the part that amateur radio played in both halves of this, the center being 1919.

The first attempts to overcome distance by electrical means started in the 18th century with Leyden jars and long stretches of chain or wet string, Benjamin Franklin being one of these people. When Volta discovered the electrical pile and was capable of producing direct current, that opened the way for the experiments of Faraday and Henry in developing the electromagnetic telegraph. This development inspired the search for a wireless telegraph. With the advent of the Edison and Tesla power systems, the implement for wireless furthered. The declaration of Maxwell that electricity and light were analogous laid the groundwork in Tesla's development of alternating and oscillating current devices [which] naturally led to the electric wireless.

Tesla was more interested in wireless power than wireless telegraph, that is, the wireless transmission of electricity. This led to far different results from those of Hertz and Marconi. Amateur radio played a part in the experimental development but was shut down in the massive global readjustment program following 1913. Free communications was not in the plan. Marconi stations, such as KPH in Bolinas California, were seized and RCA took over and eliminated the Marconi system fashioned on Tesla's ideas.

Following RCA's formation amateur radio was restored and given the worthless frequencies above 1500 kilocycles. Hams found that these frequencies allowed for very long distance but intermittent transmission by Hertzian means. RCA grabbed onto these frequencies and established electromagnetic radio. The Tesla Marconi system was forever abandoned. The present amateur radio has abandoned all experimentation and has embraced the corporate instituted technologies of the new Babylon. Although amateur radio has the potential for the development of the Tesla non-electromagnetic radio system, the lore of the 2 meter yak yak renders this development unlikely. In all likelihood teslas important developments are lost forever, but let's see what's going on here.

We tracked the history of wireless communications, it started with a person named Mahlon Loomis. What Loomis did is he chose two mountaintops 6 miles apart and flew two kites up into the atmosphere, roughly about 1000 feet up. As you can see in the diagram he hooked a telegraph key to one and a sensitive galvanometer to the other, and sure enough, when the key was hit on [one] end, the galvanometer moved on the other end and Morse code transmission was possible. You'll also notice there's no battery. No Southern California Edison, no Pacific gas and electric. [1]

Edison tried to develop a form of wireless where trains with long wires stretched along and could communicate with telegraph wires along the tracks, this being a magnetic system and very ineffective. Basically these could be called single energy forms of transmission and [Loomis'] uses pure electrostatic and [Edison's] uses pure magnetic. Now it's interesting to note that the electrostatic worked and the magnetic didn't.

Then we move on to the double energy wireless where the real progress was made. Hertz in 1880 found that he could transmit VHF and UHF signals by discharging a capacitor into a [half wave] loop and a half wave loop on the other end would produce a spark, but this didn't work over a very great distance. Tesla found by taking two resonant coils and exciting one with alternating current [he could] produce the appearance of electrical current at the other end. This worked at very far distances and no RF amplifiers were required, it would light up a lightbulb at the other end.

As wireless progressed, Tesla established the system where he could transmit [electrical power] longitudinally through the earth at a velocity of 291,000 mi./s. Also he developed a beam tube […]

(Skeptic interrupts) whoa, what was that speed?

291,000 mi./s, Pi over 2 times the velocity of light.

(Skeptic) 186,000 mi./s is C, I think you're exceeding C, maybe kilometers?

No, it's Pi over 2 times the velocity of light.

(Chris Carson) he is exceeding c, he'll go on and explain.

(Skeptic) okay.

There's a different set of dimensions. The velocity of light simply is an expression of the ratio between energy and mass.

(Skeptic) right, which is a limit.

A limit to what?

(Skeptic) a constant…

It's a constant. Not a limit.

In the beam, Tesla found that he could transmit direct current energy over incredible distances, and this energy not diverging out of the beam, much tighter, more compact than any laser ever built. In the longitudinal mode through the ground, there were really no losses and the lightbulb would light up at the other end. Marconi, in an attempt to circumvent the Tesla patents, changed the impedance of the system and used the flat top antenna where you would get transverse electromagnetic propagations at 186,000 mi./s and longitudinal magnetic dielectric transmissions at 291,000 mi./s. For those that want to go back through history, Prof. Wheatstone proclaimed that the velocity of electrostatic induction was Pi over 2 times the velocity of light. Those of you that know about electronics and electricity, I'm sure you've heard of the Wheatstone bridge. Wheatstone was a very important researcher. [2]

As things progressed, we ended up with this. Thanks to Mr. Sarnoff and RCA, all of these things were eliminated and we ended up with a system where transmission only propagated at 186,282 mi./s and the losses in the system were total. This occurred in 1919 and by then Tesla had vanished from the scene.

Now if we analyze these systems we find that [in] the longitudinal magneto dielectric system […] the electrostatic lines of force and the magnetic lines of force are directed in the same axis as the propagation of electrical energy. In the Hertzian system, the magnetic lines of force and the electrostatic lines of force exist at right angles to the direction of electrical energy propagation and this is what accounts for it's incredible losses. In [the LMD] system we have little or no losses. In [the TEM] system we have an extremely high level of losses, in fact by it's very definition it's resistance. It's called radiation resistance, a term familiar to many.

Also we have the waveforms that these devices produced. We're familiar with the conventional alternating current, and the alternating current has a real frequency in cycles per second, and it constantly cycles in a circular fashion back and forth. And then of course we know about the continuous current or the direct current which has no cycles per second. This would be called a scalar frequency. Scaler by definition is a quantity that does not vary in your system of variation, in either time or space or whatever variation you're talking about. An example would be atmospheric pressure. Atmospheric pressure is the same everywhere in this room and that's a scalar function. But if we take the function of the height of people in the room, obviously that's a spatial function, I can see all these waves moving around. so we have a scalar function and then we have a regular function of variation in this dimension of space within this room.

Now we have the waveforms that have been forgotten since the days of spark gap and wireless. One is the impulse wave, which is measured in decibels per second and has an exponential waveform. Where [the AC] waveform is expressed in sines and cosines, [the impulse] waveform is expressed in hyperbolic sines and hyperbolic cosines and never truly dampens out but always approaches zero asymptotically. Then we have the oscillating current waveform, and this is the one that was utilized by Tesla. This waveform is expressed in cycle decibels per second. Now in Tesla's time, he had a concept which he called individualization where he would tune his resonant devices not only to respond to cycles per second but to the decibels per second and produce a second order of tuning where the waveform would become much more individualized.

Carrying this concept on further, if we take the resonant action of a simple LC circuit it produces a sinusoidal function. But if we take the resonant action of a quarter wave transmission line shorted at one end and open at the other, not only will it resonate at the fundamental frequency, but it will resonate at the third harmonic, fifth, and ninth and ad infinitum all the way up and it will produce [a square wave]. So we can see with the conventional tuning we're using the sine wave, in the transmission line tuning we end up with rectangular waves. Now if we take the resonance of a coil instead of a linear transmission line which is shorted at one end to ground and open at the other end, the harmonics are in phase and we end up with impulses. Now we find with the sine wave, the amplitude rather than being one, is the square root of two higher because of the peak to average ratio. With the rectangular wave it would be one. With the impulses, it's infinity.

Now what I attempted to show here is that in a measurable quantity of time like on an oscilloscope I've used the black to show what we would see on the screen. Now if we look at a square wave on the oscilloscope we know that this transition is not visible because the amount of time occupied is infinitesimal. Now with the impulse waveform, the pulses are of infinitesimal width.

What I'm trying to show with the shading here is the integration that shows that the energy contained in the wave is the area underneath it. There is no area on [the impulse waveform]. The amplitudes are infinite. And these are the waveforms that Tesla were working with and these waveforms would tend to punch through where the continuous waveforms wouldn't make it.

[Transcription of demonstrations and Chris Carson to come]


1. Further information on the Loomis electrostatic wireless system

2. An Account of Some Experiments to Measure the Velocity of Electricity and the Duration of Electric Light. Wheatstone, C Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London (1776-1886). 1834-01-01. 124:583–591 (OCR-ed pdf)