Nikola Tesla was a Serbian-American inventor, mechanical engineer, electrical engineer, futurist and physicist famed for pioneering important inventions such as dynamos, X-ray technology, rotating magnetic field, radar technology and the induction motor.
Tesla was born on 10th July 1856 in the Smiljan village of Austrian Empire (present day Croatia). In 1861, he went to a primary school in the village where he learned arithmetic, German and religion. He completed ‘Lower Real Gymnasium’ and then the ‘Higher Real Gymnasium’ where he was much influenced by his math teacher. Soon he could perform integral calculus in his mind. Tesla completed a four year term in just three years because of intellect. He entered the ‘Austrian Polytechnic’ after achieving a Military Border scholarship. There he worked really hard never missing a class or lecture and never taking a holiday. He was so involved in his studies that his professors wrote to his father that if kept on doing this he could even be killed from overwork.
During the second year of school, Tesla became addicted to gambling and eventually lost his scholarship. In his third year he lost all of his money to gambling and had no money left for his tuition. Because of this behavior Tesla was unable to graduate and in the end of 1878 he had to abandon his family to hide that he had not been able to graduate. He went to Maribor (present day Slovenia) where he got work as a draftsman. The next year his father tracked him down and asked him to come home however Tesla refused. He also suffered a nervous breakdown the same year. In 1881, Tesla started working for a telegraph company called the ‘Budapest Telephone Exchange’ where he was promoted to the position of chief electrician. During his time there, Nikola Tesla made many positive changes to the Central Station equipment.
Tesla got a job at the ‘Continental Edison Company’ based in France, where he had to design electrical equipment. He excelled at this job and made many improvements. Two year later, he was sent to New York City where on the recommendation of his former employer, he was hired by Thomas Edison. He began working on the Edison Machine Works. Soon Tesla became an important part of the company solving several of their problems. He resigned after having a spat with Edison over some money he was promised and in 1886 formed his own electrical company by the name of ‘Tesla Electric Light & Manufacture’. He established another company called ‘Tesla Electric Company’ in 1887. Tesla is known for pioneering some of the most significant inventions in history including the ‘Tesla Coil’ and the alternating-current electrical system of generators, transformers and motors which are commonly used nowadays.
Nikola Tesla began working on his most important and boldest project in the 1900. It was a global communication system through a huge electrical tower that would enable the sharing of information and also provide free electricity all over the world. However Tesla could not accomplish this task due to financial constraints. Tesla died poor and alone in 1943 in New York where he had lived for sixty years.