Tesla's Hairpin Circuit

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Tesla's own schematics for the Hairpin Circuit





Nikola Tesla, the first person to seriously study radiant energy more than a century ago, built a simple circuit to generate radiant energy so that its effects can be readily demonstrated. You MUST have a look at this as it goes against everything that we have been taught about electrical energy.


The Tesla Hairpin Circuit in action


Hairpin Circuit Demonstration Video

Karl Palsness has posted on his YouTube page two videos demonstrating the Tesla Hairpin Circuit in action. This clearly shows effects that cannot be explained using conventional physics/electricity:


Lecture Given at the 2009 Alternate Energy Partnership Conference (AEPC 2009)

On May 30, 2009, Karl Palsness gave a lecture at the 2009 Alternate Energy Partnership Conference held in Waldorf, Maryland. This lecture blew everyone away and brought the house down!!!

It has been graciously posted on YouTube in 10 parts thanks to Spodie Odie:


Some Articles by Nikola Tesla Related to the Hairpin Circuit

  • Experiments With Alternate Currents of Very High Frequency and Their Application to Methods of Artificial Illumination - PDF version, Word version

    Lecture delivered before the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, Columbia College, N.Y., May 20, 1891.

    Note: This first lecture does not talk per say about the hairpin circuit but gives important background information that should be read before moving on to the next article.

    As most versions of this lecture out on the internet contain many typos and even errors, I have proofread it and made many corrections based on the printed version of the lecture found in Lectures, Patents, Articles published by the Nikola Tesla Museum in 1956.

  • Experiments with Alternate Currents of High Potential and High Frequency

    Lecture delivered before the Institution of Electrical Engineers, London, February 1892.

    Note: This second lecture also does not talk about the hairpin circuit but gives important background information.

  • On Light and Other High Frequency Phenomena

    Lectures delivered at the Franklin Institute, Philadelphia, February 1893, and National Electric Light Association, St. Louis, March 1893.


Discussion Forums

There are some discussion threads where the Hairpin Circuit is being discussed. It is a great place to get your questions answered or gain additional insights:

Close-up Pictures of the Hairpin Circuit Replication

For those who are curious to see close up pictures of Karl Palsness' Hairpin Circuit replication used in the videos, here are close-up pictures. For most of the images, if you want a higher-resolution version, just click on the picture.

10,000V AC Transformer

In the demo, a 10,000V AC, 23 M.A. furnace ignition transformer is used.



Each pole of the 10,000V AC transformer is hooked up to the bottom of one of the capacitors (green wires) which then also hooks up to each side of the spark gap (orange wires)


Connection of the wires to the TDK High Voltage Ceramic Strontium Titanate Doorknob Capacitors (High Current / Quick discharge) 40KV, 2000 pF - (2 1/4" x 1 1/4" high)


Spark Gap

The spark gap electrodes are comprised of carbon welding rods mounted on two screws so that the distance between the electrodes can be easily varied.



The two 3/8"x48' copper rods are held in place by supports on the wooden stand. If you notice, they can easily be removed so that the copper rod can be easily changed and/or permit the removal of the sliders.







If you decide to replicate this circuit, use extreme care. Improper experimentation with high voltages can kill you! When you see Karl and others touch the Hairpin Circuit or bulbs, it is a part of the circuit where radiant energy is present but where there is NO conventional electricity present.

The way the circuit is constructed, the top part above the capacitors contains radiant energy only. Below the capacitors, it is regular 10,000 volts AC which can cause serious injury and even death.

Do not attempt to replicate this at home unless you have a good understanding of high voltage currents and how Tesla designed the circuit. Also, do not run the circuit using low voltages as the behaviour is different.



Last modified: October 8, 2016