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As far as stereotypical imagery goes, a scientist is just some clipboard-carrying, bespectacled geek in a lab coat. A “mad scientist,” on the other hand—that’s some wild-eyed, half-crazed genius raving about time machines. Or, in Nikola Tesla’s case, rayguns. Early in his career, the Serbian-American inventor experimented heavily with electricity, magnetism, and wireless communication—work that would eventually lead to the development of modern alternating-current electric-power systems and radio broadcasting. In his later years, however, Tesla told the world about his “Death Ray,” a concentrated beam of particles that could destroy an entire army (or disintegrate an errantly airborne owl—which it accidentally did during testing). Of course, everyone—including the government—subsequently pronounced the increasingly isolated Tesla bonkers. Yet years after he died penniless, researchers found out that he wasn’t completely off his rocker: These days, Tesla’s ominous “Death Ray” is known as—yawn—a laser. Commemorating the 150th anniversary of this vindicated crackpot’s birth is “Capturing the Light: 150 Years of Nikola Tesla—Reliefs and Paintings,” an exhibition of works by Serbian artist Dejan Jovanovic, which opens today and is on view from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to Friday, July 7, at the Embassy of Serbia and Montenegro, 2134 Kalorama Road NW. Free. (202) 332-0333. (Tricia Olszewski)