Current Wars

Edison or Tesla which one is a better scientist? As we all know, this comparison between Thomas Alva Edison and Nikola Tesla has been the subject of great debate for a long time. Everyone may have a different opinion on this subject, but one thing we are all sure of is that they are both amazing inventors and geniuses. Tesla; is the inventor of fluorescent light, the radio, the alternating current motor, and thus the method of transmitting electrical power. Edison, on the other hand, is the inventor of the light bulb, the cement-making tool, the camera, the phonograph, and the direct current electric motor. So what was the reason for them to be in such a big controversy? “Direct current” and “Alternating current”.

Tesla’s passion for alternating currents first emerged in 1876 while he was studying at the Austrian Polytechnic School. After 6 years of long work, he invented the “Alternating Current Induction Tool” in 1882. During this time, Edison was working on his brand new invention, the light bulb. But this invention has a problem: The thin wires inside the bulb cannot withstand the heat for too long. After solving this problem he established the “Edison Illuminating Company” in order to provide powerful resources to its customers. While Edison developed the bulb and established many companies, arc lamps working with alternating current, which Tesla was the inventor of, were increasing their popularity day by day. Alternating current was designed to more cheaply transmit electricity over long, thin wires, but for an unidentified reason today Edison is completely against the use of alternating current.

In 1882, Nikola Tesla started to work at the “Continental Edison Company” in Paris, which was a branch of Thomas Edison’s company. Tesla has established various relationships with different people from different countries in his working life in this company. In 1885, it was sent to America to solve the problem found in Edison’s light bulb. Edison also stated that if Tesla managed to solve these problems, he would give him $50,000. Tesla resolved this problem in 1896, but Edison did not give him the promised $50,000. In fact, he only increased his weekly salary by 10 dollars to make fun of him. Disturbed by this event, Tesla stopped working with Edison and two years later, he founded the “Tesla Electric Company” with two of his friends. More than 40 percent of the patents were obtained from this company by 1891. Edison held 1093 patents during his lifetime, and Tesla had 112 patents. Given that Tesla was working individually and Edison had multiple companies, hundreds of people working with him, and leaving most of the invention work to his assistants. This is a position not only reached by him but by the hundreds of people who have helped him.

While Edison’s project provides income to both the governments and himself, Tesla’s project comes almost for free. For this reason, the states provided support to Thomas Alva Edison, and Nikola Tesla’s cheap electricity project was never realized. Tesla and his projects never are in the limelight. Tesla was a truly idealistic man, and the world would be a very different place if he could achieve his goals…

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