Charles Proteus Steinmetz (1865-1923)

Charles Proteus Steinmetz developed theories on alternating current.

Charles Proteus Steinmetz,Charles Proteus Steinmetz,alternating current,
Charles Proteus Steinmetz. LOC
"No man really becomes a fool until he stops asking questions"

Charles Proteus Steinmetz was a giant of a pioneer in the field of electrical engineering, who invented a commercially successful alternating current motor. Only four feet tall in real life, his middle name was Proteus, named after the Greek God Proteus who could take on any shape or size. His name is even more significant considering Steinmetz choose to change his name after emigrating to the United States, his birth name was Karl August Rudolf Steinmetz.


Almost Turned Away

Law of Hysteresis

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, "the law of hysteresis deals with the power loss that occurs in all electrical devices when magnetic action is converted to unusable heat. Until that time the power losses in motors, generators, transformers, and other electrically powered machines could be known only after they were built. Once Steinmetz had found the law governing hysteresis loss, engineers could calculate and minimize losses of electric power due to magnetism in their designs before starting the construction of such machines."

In 1892, Steinmetz presented a paper on the law of hysteresis to the American Institute of Electrical Engineers. The paper was well received and at the age of twenty-seven, Charles Steinmetz had become a recognized expert in the field of electrical engineering.

Patenting An Alternating Current Generator

Pay the Bill

Steinmetz sent back the following invoice:

  1. Making chalk mark $1
  2. Knowing where to place it $9,999

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