Nikola Tesla was an electrical engineer, a master of invention, and a technological giant far beyond his years. An electric engineer for the ages. His influence on the engineering industry is continually being recognized in a world where alternative energy is becoming the status quo.
 
EIT Stock ImageAs his career matured, Tesla would turn into a polarizing figure; many were very skeptical about his belief in what humanity could achieve with electricity.

However, nothing immortalizes Tesla, and highlights his intentions for the application of electricity, more than the products produced by a company founded in 2003 and named after him: Tesla Inc.

Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla Inc, speaking to HenryFord.org about innovation said:

“The car company’s called Tesla. The reason it’s called Tesla is because we use an AC induction motor, which is an architecture that Tesla developed - and the guy deserves a little more play than he gets in current society.”

Nikola Tesla, in a surreal epiphany, had the idea to design an alternating-current motor and electrical system that would revolutionize the power grid that Thomas Edison - the man that brought the world the incandescent light bulb - had built in the United States.

Tesla’s ideas for how electricity could solve the world’s problems wouldn’t all come to fruition in his lifetime, however, the work he did, paved the way for the kinds of electric-powered technology we know today.
 
Tesla’s Electrical Future

The founders of Tesla Inc. believe:

“Without Tesla’s vision and brilliance, our car wouldn’t be possible. We’re confident that if he were alive today, Nikola Tesla would look over our 100 percent electric car and nod his head with both understanding and approval.”

Tesla Motors put out their first electric car, the Tesla Roadster, in 2008; it was the first automobile to be powered off of lithium-ion battery cells. They are now manufacturing the Model 3 and rolling it out to their high-paying customers.

Another one of Nikola’s seemingly ‘crazy’ ideas was that everyone should have access to an unlimited amount of energy that could power their homes indefinitely. He was hoping to achieve this with electricity.
 
In response to this idea of his Tesla Inc. has engineered and debuted two incredible energy storage products; they have released the Powerwall to power houses and the Powerpack for industrial-sized businesses. These ‘batteries’ are a clean, renewable source of energy; they store solar energy harvested by photovoltaic solar cells and are designed to be used in peak times.

The engineer’s voice in the world

Nikola Tesla was an opinionated electrical engineer as well. He wrote many letters to magazines to not only correct them on any inconsistencies, but also to respond to peers in the industry like Edison. If Tesla was alive today he might’ve used Twitter - which Tesla CEO Elon Musk uses as a platform to respond to questions and tweet his opinion.

Tesla’s best letters have been compiled in a book named Very Truly Yours, Nikola Tesla that can be purchased in e-book format or in hard copy.

Nikola Tesla’s life serves as an example of an electrical engineer who had dreams far too advanced to be realized in the era in which he was born. He was a genius who was driven by, but a little overwhelmed by his own ideas. Nikola Tesla said:

“With ideas it is like with dizzy heights you climb: At first they cause you discomfort and you are anxious to get down, distrustful of your own powers; but soon the remoteness of the turmoil of life and the inspiring influence of the altitude calm your blood; your step gets firm and sure and you begin to look - for dizzier heights.”

 His legacy lives on in the minds of engineers who are pioneering new inventions to improve the world we live in.

 

Works Cited
“Elon Musk - Visionaries on Innovation.” The Henry Ford, www.thehenryford.org/explore/stories-of-innovation/visionaries/elon-musk/.
“Tesla.” Tesla, Inc, www.tesla.com/.
Wasik, John F. “Nikola Tesla: the Man Whose Name Lives on in the Tesla Car.” Financial Review, Financial Review, 8 Jan. 2018, www.afr.com/technology/the-man-whose-name-lives-on-in-the-tesla-car-20180103-h0d7yh.