How is a 1920 Tesla device still not fully understood and useful in modern technologies?
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3 min read
We all know that Nikola Tesla was a misunderstood genius of his day. To sample a button: modern scientists have just found new uses for one of their inventions.
According to the journal Nature Communications this Monday, scientists studied one of his inventions of more than 100 years and have found modern uses for it.
According to a report by CNet , the so-called “Tesla valve”, a device that the Croatian designed to pass fluid from one place to another without moving parts. It is a kind of conduit in which a main channel is interspersed with a series of teardrop-shaped diversion loops. The loops are oriented in such a way that fluids flow easily in one direction, but when reversed, the flow is almost completely blocked.
Simply put, Tesla’s design is that with no moving parts like springs or gears, there is no wear in the conventional way.
Image: Nature Communications
“While Tesla is known as a wizard of electrical currents and electrical circuits, his lesser-known work in controlling fluid flows or currents was really ahead of its time,” explained Leif Ristroph, associate professor at the Courant Institute of Sciences. New York University Mathematics, as reported by CNet .
Ristoph reported that by experimenting with replicas of the valve, patented in 1920, his team found that the valve’s flow-blocking capabilities “kick in” creating turbulence and vortex eddies in the conduit at a certain flow rate.
The scientists explained that this valve could be used to harness vibrations in engines and machinery to pump fuel, coolant, lubricant, or other gases and liquids.
Ristroph summed up Nikola Tesla perfectly, Nature Communications notes: “It is remarkable that this 100-year-old invention is not yet fully understood and may be useful in modern technologies in ways that have yet to be considered.”