Books, misc.

Getting slightly off the subject of Tesla coils, "Lighting" by Martin Uman 
is an interesting technical book ("advanced undergraduate in physics 
or engineering" level) about past and present lightning research (up to 
1983 when the book was revised).  Chapters include "Introduction to 
Lightning", "Lightning Photography", "Electric and Magnetic Field 
Measurements", "Current Measurements", "Lightning Spectroscopy", 
"Thunder", and "Theory: The Discharge Process".  In addition to just 
being downright neat, some of the measurement techniques described 
or referenced could probably be used or adapted for Tesla coil 
research, particularly if you're experimenting with power transmission 
and the like at fairly low frequencies.

He also has a less technical (i.e. - no math) book about lightning called 
"All About Lightning" that I just got for my (precocious) 10 year old that 
is written at about a middle or high-school level.

The books are published by "Dover Publications", 180 Varick Street, 
New York, N.Y. 10014.  I think they are worthwhile and they are 
certainly inexpensive enough ($7.95 and $5.95 for "Lightning" and "All 
About Lightning" respectively).  Thinking about 90km discharges at tens 
or hundreds of thousands of amps can really put things in perspective 
(something to shoot for?).

Steven Roys (sroys-at-radiology.ab.umd.edu)