UK winter Teslathon, Cambridge 30th Oct 1999
Many thanks to Bob Golding for organising this event at the Cambridge Museum of Technology. The
steam engines provided a rather fitting backdrop for our activities! MMCs were definitely
the order of the day, and we set what we think is a new unofficial British record of
82" sparks using Mike Tucknott & Brian Le Page's MMC coil. Then the breaker
tripped and all the lights went out!
Bob Golding's coil
Steve Crawshaw's coil. Note steam piston in background!
My coil, as usual running better than it does at home. The white vertical blob bottom right is a transformer safety gap running in "jacob's ladder" mode.
(Left) Gordon Forrest's plasma globe made from laboratory flask, with flyback power supply. This was run with a vacuum pump, producing low-pressure air discharges. (Right) First attempt at double-exposure of me getting zapped - better paint the ground rod black next time!
When it stopped raining, I set up my 120uF 5KV cap bank outdoors. After
crushing a couple of cans and levitating a hard-disc
platter onto the roof, some water (2 images below) and wire was exploded, and for an
oncore, a soggy tea-bag was blown up. Fortunately it was nearly fireworks night, so the
loud bangs didn't attract too much attention....
Exploding a couple of feet of thin copper wire. This image has been edge-enhanced to highlight the shower of molten wire fragments disappearing in all directions. The loop of wire went from the terminals at bottom-right to the top of the plastic bottle & back.
(left) Pairs of frames from two digital camera movies of exploding wire. (right) Remains of exploded wet teabag. Click here for more frame sequences of stuff exploding.
More images of Mike & Brian's coil.
The two images below were taken with a Casio QV5500 digital camera, in 'night scene' mode, which forces a long exposure (0.25 sec I think).