* Original msg to: Esondrmn-at-aol-dot-com
 * Carbons sent to: usa-tesla-at-usa-dot-net

Quoting Esondrmn-at-aol-dot-com (Ed Sonderman)

> Did you ever get this message?

Yes. I am sorry if I had to put you on the back burner for a few
days. My time has been taxed to the point that I have to make
time to think; meaning if the answer requires any research or
brain drain it must be squeezed in. You have no idea what has
been going on... Still, very few things are allowed to completely
slip past. The norm is now that I must be bothered to reply
promptly (see sentance #2), everything else is placed in line.

I almost feel guilty for putting you off, but I know you are not
in need of critical assistance. I have a bunch of photos of your
coiling work that are waiting for scans... I have yet to obtain 
a free afternoon to get these images digitized. Having put them
off for as long as I have... I am getting frustrated that so
simple (but time consuming) a task has to be delayed for at least
another two weeks...

Still those who know me know that I can get (and I am getting)
things done... It is just the focus shifts. New house closing in
a matter of weeks. New job as of 10/02/95. My wife and I won
legal custody of her 9 year old son as of 10/15/95. On top of
this my coiling activities remain a priority, but I still have
not coated my most recent 8" coil... In fact I was trying to find
30-40 minutes this week to get to the hardware store to locate
some Super Gloss Build 50 by Behr for secondary coating. I spent
an hour organizing, compressing, and copying files while a video
was being transcribed: the best of the archives were custom
edited for a new member of the group out of Sunset Florida.

> Richard,

> Did Nikola Tesla ever mention anything in his notes about 
> saturation of the Tesla coil?  

Not directly. This was a problem that Tesla did not run up
against (like a wall) because of the materials he was forced to
work with, he simply could not pack these energy levels into his
small compact designs. When he did pack large peak powers into
very small compact coils, these coils were designed to produce
current, not so much higher voltages.

> I was thinking this weekend that there must be a power or 
> efficiency curve that applies to each particular coil 
> configuration. 

I would concur.

> Back in March of this year, I was using one home made rolled 
> capacitor with 4 12kv 30 ma neon transformers and getting 4 
> feet of spark.  This is 360 watts in per foot of spark out.  
> Now, with a commercial capacitor, pole pig, rotary gap, etc. I
> am gettting just over 6 feet of spark with 8,000 watts in.  
> This is 1,300 watts in per foot of spark out.  If we had a 
> curve of power in vs power out for this system, it seems like 
> it would flatten out at or near 2000 to 3000 kva in. 

Your thinking is correct as far as my experience and education in
this field has shown. You reach a limit of diminishing returns
where power processing efficiencies are concerned.

> As you slowly increase the power in, I would think the power 
> out is near linear for a while and then it gets to a point 
> where the system cannot use or process any more power.  Is this
> merelly a function of the secondary?  I can't see how the 
> primary would be a restriction.

Tesla did reach the point of dimishing returns, if not
saturation. The end question is one of oscillator/resonator Q
factors. Tesla found that by going to larger and larger diameter
coils you could regain power processing efficiencies. I don't
believe the gain in efficiency is singly sourced, that is, I feel
it results from several factors: increased wire diameters,
reduced charge densities, a "smoothing" of coupling by increasing
the wire mass over a larger volume, higher Q primaries, etc..
Tesla employed each and every one of these techinques in order to 
boost the efficiency, as well as many others. Many of these
points are inherant to larger diameter coil systems. 

You personally have pushed and progressed towards producing the
maximum possible discharge from a given six inch diameter
secondary. This is different from pushing towards getting the
maximum possible discharge from a given input power. There is a
big difference.

IMHO the trick is obtaining the smallest possible system that
will achieve close to the best possible discharge per watt of
input power. With my eye on that I would pump 2-3 kVA through a
six inch secondary; but if I desired to process more power I
would use larger coils for better efficiency.

I hope this answers your questions.

Richard Quick

... If all else fails... Throw another megavolt across it!
___ Blue Wave/QWK v2.12