Behold: The world's largest Tesla coil

Electrical engineer Greg Leyh built the giant Tesla coil in this video, and wants to construct an even larger version: Two 10-story-high towers that would send lightning zinging across an area the length of a football field. New Scientist interviewed Leyh, to find out what the point of this is (besides the obvious inherent awesomeness):

Lightning can break down air up to five times more easily than normal electric arcs [between two oppositely charged rods in the lab], using tricks we don't yet understand. However, recent theories and a few tantalising experimental results suggest that normal arcs start to gain lightning-like abilities once they grow past about 60 metres in length. If we can build a machine this large, we'll very quickly arrive at a better understanding of what's going on.

A couple of weeks ago, Pesco pointed out that you can actually donate money towards making this project happen. Double awesome!


  1. I’m curious to know why he thinks his setup will work better than what the Russians have?  They have created arcs over 400+ feet, so it looks like they would be in that “lighting” range.

  2. Years ago I bought a 15kV neon sign transformer. I used to run a ‘Jacobs Ladder’ of it. In a closed room the ozone built up to choking point within 1-2 minutes.  What must the ozone output of a monster Tesla Coil be?

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