Juan J. Tomadelli

From Kook Science

Juan J. Tomadelli
Juan J. Tomadelli - newspaper portrait, c. 1923.jpg

Newspaper portrait, c. 1923

Alias(es) "Count" Tomadelli; John Joseph Tomadelli
Born 19 August 1885(1885-08-19) [1]
Trieste, Austria-Hungary
Died November 1962 (77)
Dade, Florida
Citizenship American (nat. 1926)
Affiliations Tomadelli Electronic Corporation (Delaware, 1921; New York, 1923)
Known for Bottled Sunlight cold incandescent bulb

Juan Joseph Tomadelli (August 19, 1885 - November 1962) was an Italian-born American socialite, painter, and electrical engineer who promoted a cold self-sustaining incandescent light bulb, referred to as "Bottled Sunshine," which he claimed would remain lit for up to three years without electrical current, drawing power from the atmosphere. Tomadelli ultimately failed to produce his technology and was charged repeatedly with fraud in connection with the claims, including an attempted enjoinment against selling stock by New York in 1924 (dismissed due to lack of evidence that Tomadelli made representations that were "consciously false and made with intent to deceive"), an injunction against selling stock by New Jersey in 1928, and a conviction in 1942 on federal mail fraud charges.

Selected Patents

  • CA266487A. Apparatus for Supplying Energy. (Appareil à production d'énergie.) 7 Dec. 1926, filed 29 May 1923. "Apparatus for supplying energy, comprising a body of matter comprising sun-dried sea salt and a metal intimately mixed together, and means for maintaining controlled atomic change in the sea salt in said body resulting in the release of electronic energy therefrom and for directing the released energy in a predetermined path."

Press Coverage

Bottled Sunshine

First Claims (1923)

Fraud Charges (1942)

Speed Painting


  • Tomadelli's light bulb was compared to the research of T. Henry Moray during government hearings into the R.E.A. in 1944.