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On October 28, 2011, Andrea Rossi demonstrated his 1 megawatt E-Cat system to his first customer, who had engineers/scientists on hand to test/validate its performance. Due to a glitch, it provided 479 kW of continuous power for 5.5 hours during the self-sustained mode.
 
Andrea-Rossi_Sterling-Allan_Oct28_2011_1MW_test_300
Here I am with Andrea Ross after the test of the 1 MW E-Cat plant in the background

By Sterling D. Allan (who was present), with Hank Mills Pure Energy Systems News
Well, the big day has come and gone. Andrea Rossi's one-megawatt-capable E-Cat cold fusion device has been tested in Bologna, Italy; and the unknown customer, who ran the test, is apparently happy. There were some issues, so it couldn't be run at full power in self-looped mode, but what it did do was plenty impressive. It ran for 5.5 hours producing 479 kW, while in self-looped mode. That means no substantial external energy was required to make it run, because it kept itself running, even while producing an excess of nearly half a megawatt. Rossi explained the reasons for this in the presentation he gave, which I videotaped and will be posting later. That's half the rated capacity, but it is still a major accomplishment for the device that was completed earlier this week -- the first of its kind on the planet. Early in the day with a glitch showing up, Rossi said that they had to make a decision about whether to go for 1 MW output, not in self-sustain mode, or with self-sustain mode at a lower power level.  The customer opted to go for the self-sustain mode. Nothing was said about the prospects of a follow-up test, though I would imagine that the customer will be running many tests to understand this gadget they have purchased, and that information will be conveyed to Rossi. When I asked him during the Q&A session if the customer was satisfied with the test, Rossi responded, "Yes, I think they are satisfied." Here is a brief video excerpt highlight from Rossi during his 1-hour reading of the public report from the customer, followed by a question and answer session.  I recorded the entire presentation, and we'll post that tomorrow, hopefully along with a transcription.  Half the time was in Italian, as he would address each item in Italian as well as English. In this excerpt, Rossi responds to the question, "So, is this a breakthrough?"

1 MW E-Cat Cold Fusion Device Test Successful
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Here's a transcription of the excerpt video:
Mister
[Paolo] Soglia has asked me if I think that the test of today is a breakthrough. I think yes, because I think today we have seen enough. No more small five or ten kilowatt units, but now we have overcame the difficulties connected with the basic engineering to make something that....  You know, to go in self sustain mode and make 400 [actually 479] kilowatt hours per hour... To understand that this is a breakthrough...  You can also think that hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to try to have a COP [coefficient of performance] of 1.1 with nuclear fusion. Today we have made a theoretically endless COP making 470 kilowatt hour per hour of completely free energy, free of fuel. Yes, I think this is a breakthrough.  Of course this is the first step, but it is a very important first step....
Early this year Andrea Rossi announced his plans to construct and test the world's first one megawatt cold fusion plant. The plant would utilize his E-Cat (Energy Catalyzer) technology that utilizes tiny quantities of nickel powder and hydrogen gas as fuel, while producing large amounts of energy in the form of heat. Importantly, the energy is produced without emitting any pollution, utilizing any radioactive materials, or producing any nuclear waste. Simply put, the E-Cat offers the world a source of cheap, safe, and clean energy. Although the exact plans for the launch of the technology were adjusted a few times throughout the course of this year, October 28th, 2011 was settled on for the date of the official test of the one megawatt plant by the first customer.
These first plants will cost around $2,000 per kilowatt to build one at a time, but once they are mass produced, Rossi expects the price to drop to around $100 per kilowatt installed. Attendance at this test was limited for several reasons. First, the customer does not wish to be known at this time, nor to have its test engineers/scientists identified. I did not inadvertently discover the customer's identify, nor did I try to find out. I gave that group their space and did not probe. Second, the device is a nuclear device, and the regulations for a public demonstration are extremely stringent; so by making the event private, and only bringing one or two at a time to see it was a way to get around the safety requirements. Most of us (around 30 guests total) arrived between 9 and 10 am; and by around 11 am, Rossi began taking people back to see the device while it was in operation, in self-sustained mode. Here's a video I shot, with Rossi's permission, during my 2-3 minute chance to see the unit during operation:

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IMGA0077_300 Here I am with Mats Lewan and other Swedish associates.
IMGA0070_300 Here I am with Peter Svensson from the AP
IMGA0071_300 Professor Giuseppe Levi, who was Rossi's right-hand man today, will be heading the Bologna research on the E-Cat.
Power for start-up (resistive coils that provided heat to the reaction chambers) was provided by the large and loud genset (was making all the noise) you see that is nearly as large as the small shipping container in which the 1 MW E-Cat plant was arranged.  Once the reaction chambers got up to temperature, they were maintained by the heat produced by the reaction. I'm not sure why they kept the generator running after that, but I would guess it was for back-up or safety. I'm sure the engineers testing the system made sure what the power levels were at all times. There were 100 E-Cat modules, each with 3 reaction chambers in them, for a total of 300 reaction chambers. An additional 20 or so units had been installed on the top of the shipping container, compared to the earlier photos and videos we had seen. Steam was produced by the units and exited through the back in the bottom of the two pipes. The steam was not put to use to run a load but the heat was dumped via two radiators, distilled, and circulated back into the system. When looking inside the plant, I noticed that one of the E-Cat units had a little steam escaping from the front of it. The top pipe in the back, which was closed, was for emergency cool-down, if needed.  Each unit was run independently through a computerized control.  The input and output temperature readings were recorded by computer, and the data will be provided to us probably later this evening or tomorrow morning.  When I went by there, I think the input was measuring 19 C, and the output was 109 C. Radiation measurements were taken by Dr. Bianchini David, from the University of Bologna. He said no extraneous radiation was detected at any time emanating from the reaction chambers, or from the piping, or from the water tanks, or in the vicinity of the apparatus. Apparently, gamma radiation is produced during the reaction, which is shielded by water, iron, lead, and a final coating on the apparatus. David said that he has not measured gamma radiation from the device, because he has not had access to the reaction chamber while it has been unshielded. None of the units were taken apart following this test, as was the one back on the October 6 test. I asked Rossi whether any radio frequencies were used in the test, and he said "no". I would estimate that there were about 12 people assisting with the test arrangement, including: 3-4 security guards, 1 caterer, 2 receptionists who checked to make sure everyone was invited and wore the required badges, 3-4 engineers helping take measurements, Foccardi was helping take guests 1-2 at a time back to see the unit. I especially enjoyed mingling with the other guests, including: Mats Lewan from NyTeknik; Irene Zreick from Focus.it; Peter Svensson, Technology Writer for the Associated Press, NY, who told me that the reason the mainstream press hasn't been covering this is because Rossi has been very picky about who he lets in; Enrico Billi, a nuclear physicist and friend of Rossi's, who is presently living in China and helping to open doors there for this technology; Professor Christos Stremmenos, from the University of Bologna, who told me all about his theory of how the technology works; Pierre Clauzon, nuclear engineering professor from France, who told me about several theoretical physicists trying to understand cold fusion in general and the E-Cat in particular; Uzikova Irina, a nuclear plant designer from Russia; Stefan Heglesson, representing a Swedish interest in the technology; Loris Ferrari, Associate Professor of Condensed Matter Physics from the University of Bologna, who will be one of the five professors to do the two year test of the E-Cat, which hopefully will be funded as a result of today's test. They will study both the "how" and the "why" of the technology. Mats and I agreed to post our stories at the same time. Peter was going to go first, having been given an exclusive by Rossi, but it's going to be a few days before he gets the necessary info and editorial approvals before he's able to run a story in the Associated Press.  Probably the biggest opening for skeptics will be the continually running genset that is probably rated for 500 kW (my guess), and appears to have been connected by cables to the E-Cat. "Where's the mystery?" So knock yourselves out, skeptics. It's the customer who has to be happy, and apparently this one was satisfied that those cables were not contributing to the 470 kW output during self-sustaining mode. Here's a video where Rossi talks to us briefly following the test, saying that a report will come shortly; and giving us the reason for why we couldn't go back during the test except 1-2 at a time.

And here's a video of a couple of 1 MW generators that were in the room where we were hanging out, which were from an earlier project Rossi was involved with, running on biofuel.

In their June 23 press conference, Defkalion Green Technologies Inc. disclosed their plans for Andrea Rossi's Cold Fusion E-Cat (Energy Catalyzer) technology. A white paper is available on their new website. Despite their willingness to reveal their intentions for this game changing technology, the mainstream media refused to budge, and remains silent.
Defkalion Press Conference Reveals E-Cat Rollout Plans
Hank Mills
Pure Energy Systems News


Knowledge is growing of Andrea Rossi's Energy Catalyzer (E-Cat) technology. This cold fusion or LENR (Low Energy Nuclear Reaction) technology utilizes nickel powder, hydrogen gas, and an undisclosed catalyst to produce nuclear fusion at low temperatures. The result is a huge amount of energy being released, in the form of heat, without any pollution or radioactive waste being produced. The technology holds the potential to reduce the cost of energy by ninety percent or more, and end the world's dependence on traditional fossil and nuclear fuels. 

Defkalion Green Technologies Inc. is the company that has acquired a license from Andrea Rossi to manufacture, sell, and distribute the technology across the world (except in the Americas). On June 23, 2011 Defkalion held a press conference in the Municipality of Palaio Faliro, Greece. During their press conference, they formally revealed their plans for the technology, the parties involved, and many additional details. 

According to accounts from individuals who were present at the press conference, around one hundred and fifty people attended. Among these included...

- Mr. Andrea Rossi (The inventor of the technology.)
- Prof. Christos Stremmenos (Professor and Ambassador.)
- Mr. A. Xanthoulis (Representative from Defkalion)
- Mr. Xinidis (The Minister of Industry and Energy)
- Representatives from various political parties including the Green Party of Germany
- The President of the Greek Technical Chamber
- The President of the Union of Greek Chambers
- The President of the Greek-American Chamber of Commerce
- Representatives of the Industrial Union of North Greece

The press coverage of the event included representatives from Greek TV stations, Greek Newspapers, Italian Journalists, and the Associated Press. Despite the many journalists that attended, mainstream media coverage has been almost non-existent. Almost a day later, an internet search yielded near zero coverage by the mainstream media. 

A video of the press conference with English subtitles is planned to be posted in the coming days.


Details Revealed

During the conference, Defkalion revealed many details about their plans for the technology. Most of these details can be found in a white paper posted on their newly refurbished website. The white paper covers the size and capacity of units that will be offered, the name the units will be sold under (Hyperion), the location of the first three factories that will be opened (Xanthi, Greece), their licensing model, the planned opening of their one megawatt plant, and the benefits of the technology.

A few of the more interesting bits of information released include...

- They will be selling CHP units (Combined Heat and Power) that will not only produce heat, but also electricity.

- The Greek government will be witnessing a test of a unit in the first ten days of July.

- They are in the process of obtaining all certifications and safety authorizations from the European Union. 

- In their products, the heat is produced via a closed thermal circuit. The circuit utilizes glycol to carry the heat.

- The first products will be offered for sale in the first quarter of 2012.

It seems that Defkalion is moving quickly to commercialize the technology. This is great, because the world needs this technology immediately. 


Addressing Skepticism

In Defkalion's white paper, the issue of skepticism is addressed. They mention how this technology would be front page news, except that most people think it is too good to be true. In fact, they compare the skepticism about their technology to that of the Wright Brother's first flights. 

For those that are not aware, many academics and skeptics denied that human flight was possible even after the Wright Brothers had flown their aircraft. Articles were written in newspapers stating that it was all a hoax, and the technology was impossible. Just like modern skeptics and naysers who dismiss exotic alternative energy technologies, skeptics of that age could not accept breakthroughs that emerged outside the "official" channels of science. 

In Defkalion's white paper, they quote a paragraph from the book, "The Wright Brother's" that addresses the issue of skepticism against exotic new technologies.

"When a man of the profound scientific wisdom of Simon Newcomb (for example) had demonstrated with unassailable logic why man couldn't fly, why should the public be fooled by silly stories about two obscure bicycle repairmen who hadn't even been to college? Professor Newcomb was so distinguished an astronomer, that he was the only American since Benjamin Franklin to be made an associate of the Institute of France. It was widely assumed that what he
didn't know about the laws of physics simply wasn't in books. And that when he said that flying couldn't be done, there was no need to inquire any further."

The fact is the scientific community has turned into a cult that preaches anything that claims to violate the so called "laws of physics" is a fraud, hoax, or "snake oil." However, their pathological skepticism is going to come back to haunt them, when these technologies emerge into the marketplace -- with or without their involvement!

As more information emerges about Defkalion and Andrea Rossi's technology, it will be posted here
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May 17, 2011
An American company named Ampenergo has made a deal with Andrea Rossi to market his Energy Catalyzer (E-Cat) technology in the Americas. Ampenergo, which has ties to people in the U.S. DOD and DOE, will share royalties with Rossi, and are in the middle of talks with multiple potential customers. 
Ampenergo Amps Up Rossi's Energy Catalyzer in America
Rossi_calytic_chamber_300 Screenshot of the Energy Catalyzer as seen in the video The Magic of Mr. Rossi.
by Hank Mills The saga of Andrea Rossi's cold fusion technology (called the Energy Catalyzer or E-Cat) continues to accelerate. His game changing technology consumes tiny quantities of nickel and hydrogen to produce huge quantities of clean, safe, and cheap energy. Unlike conventional fission based nuclear power, no radioactive materials are used and no nuclear waste is produced. Multiple companies are now positioning themselves to market the E-Cat, both in Europe and the Americas. One of these companies is Defkalion Green Technologies which is based in Greece. Another is company is Ampenergo, which is located in the United States.  Defkalion Green Technologies has acquired a license to manufacture, distribute, and market the E-Cat in all areas of the world except the Americas. It has recently been announced that another company named Ampenergo, has made a deal with Andrea Rossi (through his company Leonardo Corporation) to market and develop the technology in North and South America. Ampenergo has paid Andrea Rossi for these rights (an undisclosed amount), and in return they will receive a share of all royalties from the sale of E-Cat licenses and products in the Americas.  In this latest deal, there seems to be three companies involved. First, there is Leonardo Technologies Inc. (LTI) of Bedford New Hampshire, that was co-founded by Rossi. He sold his interest in the company over ten years ago, and has apparently used the proceeds to develop his cold fusion technology. It appears he has stayed in contact with the company since that time, and has worked with them to develop the technology. After selling his stake in LTI, Rossi started his own company named, "Leonardo Corporation." This company has a manufacturing plant in Miami, Florida that is producing the E-Cat modules. In 2009, LTI branched off to create Ampenergo which is located in the USA as well. Ampenergo was founded by Karl Norwood, Richard Noceti, Robert Gentile and Craig Cassarino. It is important to note that Robert Gentile was the Assistant Secretary of Energy for Fossil Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) during the early 1990's. This helps confirm Rossi's claim that tests of the E-Cat have been observed by the U.S. Department of Defense and the DOE. It is very likely that at least certain individuals in the DOD and DOE are aware and interested in the Energy Catalyzer. However, their silence is deafening.  It is unknown if any military or secret government research is taking place, but there are unsubstantiated rumors floating around the internet of the US Navy using a nickel-hydrogen cold fusion reactor to power a submarine. Although the rumor is not likely to be true, if they have known about the technology for a couple of years, it is possible testing is taking place. Trillions of dollars go missing from the DOD budget on a regular basis, and the money is obviously being spent on something.  Interview with NyTeknik In an interview with the Swedish website NyTeknik, Craig Cassarino of Ampenergo disclosed several interesting tidbits of information about the deal, his company, and their plans for the technology. Importantly, it is clear that Ampenergo is very impressed with Rossi's technology. Craig claims that his company witnessed three demonstrations in the USA, and at least one in Bologna, Italy. They do not fully understand the exact reactions taking place, but are certain that the E-Cat technology works.  Craig also claims they are in talks with multiple companies in North and South America. Some companies are very skeptical about the technology, but others are more open. The companies they are talking with have many potential applications for the technology. One company they contacted considers the technology as a high power density fuel. This would be correct, because the reaction chamber for a 2.5 kW output is about the size of an adult fist, and with this technology one hundred grams of nickel powder can replace many barrels of oil. In addition, the fuel would be very cheap. Andrea Rossi has recently stated that a recharge that would power a unit for six months would only cost approximately $100 dollars. To produce the same amount of energy from oil would cost thousands of dollars. Most likely, the cost for the fuel would eventually be much lower than $100 dollars for 100 grams (the quantity that can power a reactor for six months). The $100 dollar figure probably does not factor in cost savings that would take place when mass production of the powder starts, and of course the company would be making a profit off the powder.  During the interview, space travel is mentioned as a potential application of the technology. We know that NASA is among those showing interesting the E-Cat. My hope is that the energy produced by the E-Cat would not be used to power a nuclear rocket, but to power something truly exotic. For example, could the E-Cat produce enough electricity to power an electrogravitic craft such as those suggested by Townsend Brown? It seems that the race is on to commercialize the E-Cat. Defkalion and Ampenergo seem to be leading the way. Of course most of the dumbstream media is remaining silent of this race towards the commercialization of cold fusion technology. As of right now, the best sources for news and information are from alternative news sites such as PESN. I expect this to be the case even after CBS, FOX, ABC, NBC, and MSNBC start covering the technology. By staying alert and keeping an open mind, we have a huge head start!  More Info from Rossi's Blog Andrea Rossi frequently posts responses to questions on his blog at the Journal of Nuclear Physics. He has been revealing many interesting tidbits of information. However, he still declines to disclose information about the catalyst used. One piece of information he has revealed is that all 330 E-Cat modules for the one megawatt plant in Xanthi, Greece have been manufactured and are being tested. In previous posts, he indicated that testing consists of modules being in continuous operation. Basically, this means that the one megawatt plant is running right now, but just not in Greece yet. Also, the enclosure for the one megawatt plant is being designed. It is relatively small, being only 3 x 3 x 2 meters and weighing only 2 tons.  A few additional bits of information from his blog... * Rossi has began using the term "new fire" to describe his technology.  * An E-Cat can be throttled down to a lower power level in approximately one minute. * He is using the term E-Tiger to describe the one megawatt plant. * He has stated that it is possible a one megawatt plant will be opened in the USA by November. * In private testing, the temperature inside of the reactor can reach 1,600 C which is hot enough to melt the nickel powder (probably not desirable). * E-Cats will be sold to the public by the end of this year. More Test Results on the Way It has been rumored on the Vortex L discussion list (one of the best sources for cold fusion information on the web) that the University of Bologna is about to disclose additional test results from the E-Cat. As we have mentioned here at PESN, the University of Bologna is in the middle of a one year research program on the technology. Most likely, the data they release will be from extended tests of E-Cat units. Already, all chemical energy sources have been ruled out, and nuclear energy is the only possible source of the excess heat. For example, one test had an E-Cat running for 18 hours producing a constant output of around 15 kilowatts with an average input of only 80 watts. Maybe they have had a similar test running for weeks or months!  Another rumor on Vortex-L indicates that the Swedish scientists (one of which was the former president of the Swedish Skeptics Society) who tested the E-Cat earlier in the year, have submitted a paper about an additional test of the E-Cat to a peer reviewed journal. Apparently, they are waiting on it to be published before sharing the results of that test.  Rossi has also stated that the University of Uppsala in Sweden will receive an E-Cat unit for testing. It will be interesting to see what results they get from the E-Cat. Every test of the E-Cat so far has been a success, so there is little reason to think their testing will yield different results. Catalyst Patent Application Andrea Rossi's technology produces huge amounts of energy due to an undisclosed catalyst that is composed of two elements that are not radioactive and are not precious metals. He has filed a patent application covering this catalyst. Although a patent covering his reactor design has been published (and granted in Italy), it does not disclose the catalyst. It has been speculated that the patent application for the catalyst is about to be published. This may or may not be the case, because there are ways to prevent a patent application being published before the patent is granted. For example, making many changes to the patent application delays it being published. No one knows if Rossi is taking such steps to prevent his secret from being revealed. If the catalyst is revealed, it would allow replicators to test the technology themselves. Although individuals would not be able to sell units for a profit, I do not see anything stopping individuals from building units for home use. Although this might be dangerous due to the small amount of gamma rays produced by the device (that can be shielded with 2cm of lead and a layer of boron) and nano-nickel powder being slightly toxic, the technology is so simple, I doubt anyone could prevent such replication attempts from being made.  The saga of the Energy Catalyzer continues to accelerate. The end of this year could be very exciting.

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Patent granted for the energy catalyzer
Mats Lewan 9 may 2011 14:03
The Italian energy catalyzer that seems to be based on an unknown nuclear reaction is now patented in Italy. The examination continues regarding protection in the rest of the world.
The Italian Patent Office, Ufficio Italiano Brevetti e Marchi, granted a patent for the energy catalyzer on April 6, 2011, valid until April 9, 2028.
The inventor is Andrea Rossi, while his wife Maddalena Pascucci is the patent owner.
The final content of the patent is public but not directly available online (details on how to order the content can be found here).
According to Rossi ten of the original 15 claims remain (see below).
It is not clear if the patent means that the secret details of the energy catalyst can be revealed.
“Now I have to think and, based on the effective patent protection, we can decide what to disclose,” Andrea Rossi said.
The patent office in Italy confirmed that the patent is a normal one which was granted after technical examination of the filed application.
According to other sources the examination of Italian patents, however, is more formal and less technical compared with the international patent review under the
PCT procedure.
Update: Starting on 1 July 2008 and onwards (filing date), Italian patent applications are subject to an investigation of patentability (see decree here). The patent application for the energy catalyzer was filed in April 2008.
In October 2010, the
international patent application under PCT received a negative initial assessment in a so-called International Search Report made by the International Searching Authority, and a negative International Preliminary Report on Patentability.
The criticisms include the problem that the patent application lacks detail in describing the technology.
The examination of the international patent application is now continuing in a regional and national phase, including assesment by the European Patent Office.
In addition, there is a parallel
patent application for the US.
E-cat patents
* Italian patent application MI2008A000629, filed on April 9, 2008.
Italian Patent No. 1387256 granted on April 6, 2011, expiring on April 9, 2028.
* International patent application (except the U.S.) under the PCT procedure: PCT/IT2008/000532, filed on August 4, 2008.
PCT:
International Search Report, October 9, 2010.
PCT:
International Preliminary Report on Patentability, October 9, 2010.
* U.S. patent application US2011/0005506 A1, filed on August 4, 2009.
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Patent claims in the granted Italian patent (according to Rossi). The claims are the same as in International Preliminary Report on Patentability:
1. A method for carrying out an exothermal reaction of nickel and hydrogen,
characterized in that said method comprises the steps of providing a metal tube, introducing onto said metal tube a nanometric particle nickel powder and injecting into said metal tube a hydrogen gas having a temperature much greater than 150°C and a pressure much greater than 2 bars.
2. A method according to claim 1,
characterized in that said hydrogen temperature varies in a range from 150°C to 500°C.
3. A method according to claim 1,
characterized in that said nickel powder is a nickel isotope powder.
4. A method according to claim 1,
characterized in that said hydrogen is injected into said tube under pulsating pressure.
5. A method according to claims 1 and 2,
characterized in that said hydrogen temperature is a variable temperature which varies in said range from 150°C to 500°C.
6. A method according to claim 1,
characterized in that said metal tube is a copper metal tube.
7. A modular apparatus for providing a exothermal reaction by carrying out a method according to claim 1 ,
characterized in that said apparatus comprises a metal tube (2) including a nanometric particle nickel powder (3) and a high temperature and pressure hydrogen gas.
8. A method according to claim 1,
characterized in that in said method catalyze materials are used.
9. An apparatus method according to claim 7,
characterized in that in said nickel powder filled metal tube (2) is a copper tube, said copper tube further including at least a heating electrical resistance, said tube being encompassed by a jacket (7) including either water or boron or only boron, said jacket (7) being encompassed by further lead jacket (8) in turn optionally encompassed by a steel layer (9), said jackets (7, 8) being adapted to prevent radiations emitted from said copper tube (2) from exiting said copper tube (2), thereby also transforming said radiations into thermal energy.
10. An apparatus according to claim 1,
characterized in that in said apparatus comprises, encompassing said nickel powder, hydrogen and electric resistance (101) containing copper tube (100) a first steel-boron armored construction (102) encompassed by a second lead armored construction (103) for protecting said copper tube (100), a hydrogen bottle connection assembly (106) and a hydrogen bottle (107), said apparatus further comprising, outside of said lead armored construction (103), a cooling water steel outer pipe assembly (105).

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Cold fusion economy supported by Greek government.
MAY 7, 2011


by rubycarat
Athens Mulls Plans for New Currency Greece Considers Exit from Euro Zone By Christian Reiermann Der Spiegel Online “…SPIEGEL ONLINE has obtained information from German government sources knowledgeable of the situation in Athens indicating that Papandreou’s government is considering abandoning the euro and reintroducing its own currency.” [4]
By indirections find directions out.
– Shakespeare
There is a category of inventions called disruptive technology. Funding streams allotted to this sector award designers who innovate based on radical departures from incremental change. A cursory search of disruptive technology will yield many examples, most of which are IT-oriented, such as breakthroughs in social networking, cloud computing, and cyber security.
You will find little to no mention of the most disruptive technology of all,
cold fusion, even as the first commercial device is poised to be installed later this year. Defkalion Green Technologies based in Athens, Greece holds the world rights, excepting the Americas, for Andrea A. Rossi’s Energy Catalyzer, or ECat, a new energy reactor based on cold fusion technology, which Mr. Rossi prefers to be called low-energy nuclear reactions. A factory located in Xanthi, Greece plans to use an array of smaller models of the publicly demonstrated 12 Kw ECat, linked together, to generate 1Mw power for the purpose of manufacturing more ECats.
Cautious and diligent, Steven B. Krivit of
New Energy Times published on his blog the possible board of directors for Defkalion as:
- Sortikos George, businessman, born 1942, President
- George Xanthoulis, student, son of Alexandros Xanthoulis, born 1987, Vice President - Aurel Christian David, Managing Director, born 1969 - Christos Stremmenos, University Professor, born 1932 - PRAXEN L.T.D., Company based in Cyprous, will be represented by Alexandros Xanthoulis, born 1954 - John Chadjichristos, business consultant, member of the board, born 1958 - Andreas Meidanis, industrialist, member of the board, born 1953 - Muafak Sauachni, medical doctor, (Israeli), member, born 1961 - Andreas Drugas, business consultant, born 1945
Member Christos Stremmenos is a University of Bologna professor who was interviewed recently on
Radio Città del Capo in Bologna, Italy about the ECat technology. Portions of the interview have been translated from Italian by Alex Passi in a piece on the website 22passi.blogspot.com entitled Stremmenos: “cold fusion will solve many problems of humanity”. [1]
In the interview, Professor Stremmenos mentions “his mediation with the Greek government to make an industrial plant possible. For this purpose, Defkalion Green Technology was formed, a business venture of which he is vice-chairman — on “honorary terms”, he says.”
When asked about the role of the Greek government in the formation of Defkalion and the initiation of the factory in Greece, Professor Stremmenos replied with some background:
When I retired, I wanted to set up my own lab and quietly continue my research. But I did inform George Papandreou, the current Prime Minister, who at the time was President of PASOK. In the Convention which elected him, there were these commissions working on various aspects of the Greek economy. These were supposed to lay down the most favoured Party’s platform for government. So I told him, “George, look” — I explained — “I’m still working on this”. So at the Convention he says: “You know, I believe in this thing too, but who knows when it will come about” “I don’t know”, I said, “ truth and fate we haven’t got, but we must support and pursue this line”.
When the recent breakthrough in energy production came with Mr. Rossi’s catalyst, Professor Stremmenos says he wrote to Mr. Rossi “I’d like to follow this thing up in Greece too, because right now there are serious economic problems in my country”. Later, he states,
In short, considering the climate, the mindset of the present government in Greece …let me tell you, even the opposition has now asked to be informed on this issue, too. Therefore in Greece this matter is treated without prejudice, no one is uncommitted. Here, Rossi is right, there is not much one can do about it…
Whatever the veracity of the report by Der Speigel Online that Greece would like to “exit’ from the Euro Zone, if a factory in Greece has the rights to manufacture the biggest breakthrough energy technology since the burning of wood, and the government has confidence that it’s ready to be commercialized, these events would influence any decision to leave the Euro behind, and speculate on perhaps creating their own currency backed by profits of ECat manufacturing and licensing, estimated in the hundreds of trillions of dollars? [5]
Separated from the European Central Bank, the people of Greece could be able to keep this wealth derived from energy, close to its shores. Where over two-thousand years ago, the roots of modern science, math, and democracy first emerged, we may now see a next-generation energy technology that will extend globally, for the first time in history, the opportunity for all humans to be equally self-sufficient.
The reality is that once the technology is spread, the opportunity for a change in living arrangements will be immediate, and a boon to the entire planet. New and better devices will be developed with applications we cannot think of today; an entirely new service environment with new roles for humans to play.
In a Wall Street Journal
update after the secret meeting held last night in Luxembourg, Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou has refuted the notion that Greece will leave the Euro Zone, and there are other points to factor in. But as Greece roils from a year of financial crises that continues to bring its people into the streets protesting, the European Union won’t let Greece go easily, as revealed in the dire predictions for its economy should Greece ever depart.
110428_ny-teknik_test_1_058_300
It may look like an old bathroom pipe, but this invention defines disruptive technology. Photo: Mats Lewan NY Teknik
As this technology emerges into the public awareness, “there will be a stampede” for cheap, clean, energy generated by the hydrogen in water. Our current global industries of oil, gas, and coal will be obsolesced by a small, portable, self-contained energy reactor that can supply all personal energy needs for about a quarter to a third of current prices, and eventually, even cheaper.
The dollar, once “as good as gold”, became a
petro-dollar linked with the currency of oil and as cold fusion technology permeates society, the dollar will not retain its status as the world’s reserve currency. Corporations, and all levels of government that exist for these non-entities, will see profits landslide. Cold fusion, and all new energy technologies, challenge the power that existing networks of money and hydrocarbons have, and after reigning for a hundred years, it won’t go down easy.
The public must be prepared to defend this ultra-clean energy technology. Be prepared for the assault by the
diehards on this the most disruptive of technologies.
Challenge energy policies that do not include cold fusion relentlessly.
Support young, independent new-energy companies designing next-generation technologies.
Defend your right to clean energy.
And begin transitioning to the next phase in human existence.
Cold Fusion Now!

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YRossi ECat Cold Fusion Reactor Update
May 9, 2011 |

From
a blog in Europe at 22passi.blogspot.com comes some insightful information about the Rossi ECat cold fusion reactor.
The source of the information is Professor Christos Stremmenos.  Professor Stremmenos began his scientific studies at the University of Bologna in the 1950s and continued to live, work and marry in Italy until his retirement.
Christos-Stremmenos
Professor and Ambassador Christos Stremmenos.
The professor has been interested in cold fusion since the first experiments by Fleischmann and Pons, with attempts to replicate the two chemists’ experiments. Those studies brought him into close contact with Sergio Focardi; the two have worked together on cold fusion research moving to nickel powder instead of palladium.
Stremmenos role for the path of the Rossi ECat cold fusion reactor back to Greece also begins in the 1950s.  Professor Stremmenos opposed the Greek Military Junta that came to power in the late 1960s.  That activity formed associations with anti-facists including Andreas Papandreou and with his son George Papandreou, current Prime Minister of Greece.  By the 1980s Stremmenos was appointed Ambassador to Italy for Greece.
Stremmenos is the man who bringing the Rossi ECat to Greece working with the Greek government to set up the factory that will manufacture the reactors and which will produce a 1-megawatt power plant.
22passi.blogspot.com has published an English translation parts of a radio interview at radio.rcdc.it with Professor Stremmenos describing his mediation with the Greek government to make an industrial plant possible. Defkalion Green Technology, the new company mentioned in previous reports, is a business venture of which he is vice-chairman — on “honorary terms”, he says.
Stremmenos also offers some criticism of those within the scientific community refusing to give the new discovery due consideration.
With his enthusiasm for the discovery of a new technology which he calls “revolutionary” and capable of solving mankind’s energy problems, Stremmenos declares: “Skeptics shall be defeated by the market — though this discovery is not meant to serve capitalists, but mankind”. The date is set, he says, for the October opening of the first cold fusion power plant, in Greece.
Meanwhile
the Greek business newspaper, Express, is reporting back on March 16th of 2011, “A 200 million euro investment is about to arrive in Xanthi (a city in northern Greece) for the startup of an industrial unit for the production of devices for low cost thermal and electric energy generation.”
These two pieces put a much different light on the Rossi Focardi ECat cold fusion reactor.  With The University of Bologna, the Greek government, some official involvement and fully private investment coming from Rossi alone the picture is looking quite different than simply an astonishing breakthrough – The Rossi ECat is making progress to market with plans for scale underway.
Those are just confirming extensions of the information we already have.  What is new and quite interesting is the discussion describing in broad strokes about how the Italian folks got from the early palladium idea on to nickel and getting output into the kilowatt range.  It’s a short story, but does hit the high points – it’s a good read.
Another noticeable point is Stremmenos offering the latest developments of Focardi’s studies, which came about thanks to the innovations made by Dr. Rossi, saying “we have many ideas” – claims Stremmenos – “and there still is a long way to go, but this is a road that may lead to incredible developments”.
This news is sure to light up the Rossi Cold Fusion community, and justifiably so.  The news while lightly technical and offering some reassuring background will firm up the positive opinions with more real world facts.
The naysayers are getting into a problematic quandary.  On one side the science story is gradually getting exposed.  On the other commercial production looks immanent.
Pretty soon it looks like the science community had better be figuring out the why instead of offering pundit like arguments why not.
Lets hope the patent effort bears positive fruit for Rossi and soon. Everyone would sure like to know what’s going on inside that reactor and figuring out the chemistry, physics and why the sciences are working together to release energy.

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by Hank Mills Pure Energy Systems News
Yet another test of Andrea Rossi's Energy Catalyzer (E-Cat) has been performed on a 4.5 kW version near the University of Bologna. This time a new set of observers were present, one of which is the chairman of the Swedish Skeptics Society, who confirmed that Copper is being formed from Hydrogen and Nickel -- cold fusion!
Rossi Cold Fusion Validated by Swedish Skeptic's Society
110329_Andrea-Rossi_cold-fusion_Sweedish-Skeptics_300 Andrea Rossi grasps one of his new E-Cat units that offer a more compact size and higher power density. The evidence in support of Andrea Rossi's "cold fusion" or "LENR" (low energy nuclear reaction) based Energy Catalyzer continues to grow. For those who are not aware, his system combines nickel powder, hydrogen gas, and an input of pressure and heat to produce a large output of thermal energy. On March 29th, 2011 yet another test of the technology was performed at the University of Bologna. Like previous tests, the outcome was a complete success. However, this time a smaller version of the E-Cat was tested and two new observers were present.  Some well known players were present during the test. These include Andrea Rossi (the inventor of the E-Cat), Professor Sergio Focardi, Dr. David Bianchini, and of course Dr. Giuseppe Levi. Two guest observers were also present. One of the guest observers was Hanno Essen, associate professor of theoretical physics at the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology. He is also the chairman of the Swedish Skeptics Society. The other guest observer was Professor Sven Kullander of Uppsala University. He is also chairman of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences Energy Committee. Smaller System with Great Results The test was performed on a much smaller version of the E-Cat. The previous version of the E-Cat had a reactor volume of about one liter. This system has a reactor volume of only one twentieth of a liter. Four E-Cat systems were present, but only one was tested. The remaining units had their shielding and insulation removed. This allowed for their construction to be seen.
ECAT_explained_pj70[1]
This new model of E-Cat consists of a stainless steel reactor vessel which is placed inside of a copper pipe. Water flows between the copper pipe and the steel reactor vessel. There are inlets for both water and hydrogen gas. The reactor is activated by current flowing through a resistor which is wrapped around the outside of the copper pipe. When a certain temperature is reached the reaction begins. The setup is truly simple. It reminds me of old pipework from many years ago.  Kullander and Essen were given permission to examine the setup, check for hidden power supplies, fill the reactor with hydrogen, calibrate the volume of water flow, monitor the temperature of the water flow in and out of the system, and observe the entire experiment. The reactor contained 50 grams of nickel powder and .11 grams of hydrogen. In their report (pdf) they state, "We had free access to the heater electric supply, to the inlet water hose, to the outlet steam valve and water hose, and to the hydrogen gas feed pipe. The total weight of the device was estimated to be around 4 kg." The result of the experiment was a constant average production of 4.69 kW of power for almost six hours. Additionally, the input was on average 330 watts (30 of which was used by the electronics controlling the setup). This is fifteen times less than the energy produced by the device (15x overunity). This output was less than the 10 to 15 kW produced by the previous version of the E-Cat, but this is very impressive for a device 1/20th the volume!  Kullander and Essen also ruled out that the energy could be coming from a chemical source. They stated, "Any chemical process for producing 25 kWh from any fuel in a 50 cm3 container can be ruled out. The only alternative explanation is that there is some kind of a nuclear process that gives rise to the measured energy production." This statement is VERY significant coming from a report written not only by professional scientists, but also by the chairman of a skeptical society!  Yet again, it seems the existence of cold fusion or LENR in the form of Andrea Rossi's Energy Catalyzer has been vindicated. However, there is more news to report.  Transmutations It is well known to those who have been following the saga of Andrea Rossi's technology that one byproduct of the system is copper. Apparently, it is the result of the fusion reaction between nickel and hydrogen. Until now, we had to take Andrea Rossi's word for that, but the results of additional testing has confirmed his claims. A sample of fresh nickel powder and a sample of nickel powder that had been in an active E-Cat for two and a half months was given to Kullander and Essen. Elemental and isotopic analysis was performed on the samples utilizing both X-ray Fluorescence and Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry. The result was that the fresh nickel powder was almost totally pure nickel, but the nickel powder that had been in an E-Cat contained 10% copper and 11% iron. Two of the copper isotopes detected were Cu63 and Cu65. Kullander has stated this is proof of nuclear reactions taking place in the reactor. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, Bob Park! Mr. Park, are you ready to start apologizing for your many years of claiming cold fusion is simply pseudo-science, voodoo science, and snake oil? You better crawl back into the hole you came out of, because a lot of folks are going to be demanding apologies soon!  (Go ahead and continue faking your, "cold fusion amnesia." We realize you have been avoiding talking about the topic over the past few months!) Dumbstream Media Still Not Paying Attention After multiple successful tests of the E-Cat by third parties, and now proof of nuclear reactions, it is frustrating (but predictable) that the mainstream media is not paying hardly any attention to this technology. The E-Cat represents a way to eliminate our need for fossil fuels and an alternative to conventional nuclear power. However, Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, and many other news networks act as if nothing is happening. This is more proof that the mainstream media is dead, totally owned and controlled by the corrupt powers that be. If you want up to date news and information the alternative media is now the best source. At some point, awareness of this technology will reach a critical mass, and the so called mainstream media will be forced to cover it. Probably, there will be multi-hour long televised specials about the technology. The truth, of course, will be that they will not deserve the ratings they get. They ignored this technology for many months and it would serve them right if no one tuned in! I hope Andrea Rossi does not give a single major network in the United States an interview. My personal hope is that he chooses to give frequent interviews on Coast to Coast AM, and other media outlets that have frequently favorably discussed cold fusion over the years.  Energy Revolution Coming Soon This is further evidence that an energy revolution is coming. As the year long research program on the E-Cat technology continues at the University of Bologna, more evidence is bound to be released. Perhaps soon after the one megawatt power plant and 300,000 unit a year manufacturing plant in Xanthi, Greece opens, a factory can start up in Japan. They could sure use a source of jobs and a new source of energy to replace their destroyed conventional nuclear power industry. The only real mystery at this point is the catalyst(s) used in the reaction. This is the key to producing practical levels of output from nickel-hydrogen fusion systems.  # # #
This story is also published at
BeforeItsNews.
Links:
- Participants: Giuseppe Levi, David Bianchini, Carlo Leonardi, Hanno Essén, Sven Kullander, Andrea Rossi, Sergio Focardi. Travel report by Hanno Essén and Sven Kullander, 3 April 2011.
Experimental test of a mini-Rossi device at the Leonardocorp, Bologna 29 March 2011
  • - English version of announcement
    http://www.nyteknik.se/nyheter/energi_miljo/energi/article3144827.ece
  • http://nextbigfuture.com/2011/04/swedish-researchers-confirm-rossi-and.html
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    Updating the Rossi Focardi Cold Fusion Reactor
    March 9, 2011 | 18 Comments
    Andrea Rossi with Sergio Focardi consulting
    made news in January with a demonstration of the Rossi design of a nickel hydrogen fueled low energy nuclear reaction (LENR) reactor. The past month has been pretty quiet in much of the world where the noose of established science has no temperament for things not already successfully through its own peer review.
    Rossi-and-Focardi-at-the-Italy-Demonstration-Jan-2011
    Rossi and Focardi at the Italy Demonstration January 2011
    But outside of the science establishment lacking curiosity and vision the press has caught on  – which leaves most of the news in foreign languages.  Most notable is Italy, Rossi’s and Focardi’s native land is proudly reporting as well the Greek and Swedish press as well as across Europe, and there is a factory in Greece due to run a commercial demonstration later this year.
    But for those of us where the science chooses to be blind and offers a nasty treatment for those willing to proceed, the progress comes as welcome news.  That brings us to America’s most noteworthy scientist on cold fusion – Edmund Storms.
    Dr. Edmund Storms was just back from Chennai, India where the International Conference on Cold Fusion 16 (ICCF-16) took place when James Martinez arranged an interview that played for his Cash-Flow listeners on March 1. The ICCF-16 is a conference where researchers in low-energy nuclear reactions share their most recent results.  Mr. Martinez taped the interview in conjunction with 137 Films crew filming their documentary on cold fusion. To be released in late summer, it is expected to make the independent film festival rounds.
    Now Dr. Storms is a long-time private researcher in cold fusion and author of
    “The Science of Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions“. Storms obtained a Ph.D. in radiochemistry from Washington University (St. Louis) and is retired from the Los Alamos National Laboratory after thirty-four years of service. His work at Los Alamos involved basic research in the field of high temperature chemistry as applied to materials used in nuclear power and propulsion reactors, including studies of the “cold fusion” effect.  Seventy reviewed publications and monographs resulted from Storm’s work at Los Alamos as well as several books, all describing an assortment of material properties.
    Storms own cold fusion work has resulted in fifteen presentations to various conferences including the American Chemical Society and American Physics Society. In addition, twenty-one papers have been published including four complete scientific reviews of the field, one published in 1991, another in 1996 and 1998, and the latest in 2000. A critical evaluation of the Pons-Fleischmann Effect was published in 2000. In May 1993, he was invited to testify before a congressional committee about the “cold fusion” effect. In 1998, Wired magazine honored him as one of the 25 people who is making a significant contribution to new ideas.
    Dr. Storms is no lightweight, and hasn’t risen to the bait of the cold fusion deniers.  Retired and happy to be curious, he must drive the establishment a bit nuts.
    Martinez’ interview with Storms has been condensed in text at ColdFusionNow.  The full audio podcast is this link running a bit under 24 minutes with a couple of minutes up front of music and introduction.  For those interested in the highlights they are as follows:
    Storms on the situation of the Rossi and Focardi reactor:
    “They [Rossi and Focardi] found a way of amplifying the effect to a level that makes it attractive as an industrial source of energy and people in the cold fusion field have been working towards that, but they had not achieved that level of heat production, and so this was both a bit of a surprise and a bit shock, but a bit of a kick to get people moving a little more rapidly now. And it looks like the phenomenon will actually have an application.”
    His thoughts on the science status:
    “We’ve arrived. It’s interesting we’ve arrived in a different car than we thought we were. Cold fusion started out using deuterium and palladium, and then Rossi found that it worked quite well in nickel and light hydrogen.”
    On Rossi’s path to discovery:
    “Rossi hit upon this somewhat by accident. He was using a nickel catalyst to explore ways of making a fuel by combining hydrogen and carbon monoxide and apparently, observed quite by accident, that his [apparatus] was making extra energy. So then he explored it from that point of view and, apparently, over a year or two, amplified the effect.”
    “He’s exploring the gas loading area of the field. This is also a region, a method used in the heavy water, or the heavy hydrogen, system. But in this case, it was light hydrogen, ordinary hydrogen and nickel and what happens is quite amazing.”
    “You create the right conditions in the nickel, and he has a secret method for doing that, and all you do is add hydrogen to it and it makes huge amounts of energy based upon a nuclear reaction.”
    Storm’s thoughts on the secrecy:
    “Well, you really need a patent, you need to protect your intellectual property. You want to be able to gain some economic benefit from the discovery. So far, they have not gotten a patent, and that’s always been difficult in the cold fusion field because the patent examiners simply don’t believe that it’s real.”
    “So, until they get a patent, they’re not revealing how they do it. Now, they’ve been upfront about what they can do and what they promise to do, and so far, they’ve fulfilled these promises. Once they get their patent, then they promise to reveal how they go about doing this.”
    Storm’s thoughts about the coverage both where its well covered and not: On the covered side,
    “The Swedish newspapers, the Italian newspapers, the Greek newspapers, they showed an interest. The American newspapers showed none at all. It’s been on a number of blogs and talked about in a number of chat rooms, but no, it hasn’t reached a level of any serious importance to the American press.”
    Not covered,
    “Mainly because, it is institutionally the belief that cold fusion is not real, or if it is real, it’s so trivial, it’d make no difference to anybody. That’s institutional. It’s the myth that’s in, we’ll call it, the intellectual structure of the United States, and a number of other countries.”
    And Storm’s knowledge of national support, “
    There are a few countries where that’s not true, and Italy is one of them. The government there believes that it’s real, and they’re doing everything they can to develop it. The government in China believes it’s real and they’re doing everything they can to develop it.”
    And lastly, Dr. Storms offers this bit of news:
    “Rossi . . . (has)  . . .  promised a demonstration in Florida that’s coming up in October. And there will be some people from the U.S. government there watching, and hopefully they will be convinced that it’s real and that will change the attitudes.”
    Storms confirms what others have suggested, Rossi has business interests in the U.S. and will try to build at the Florida factory he owns a full one megawatt unit made up of one hundred cells similar to the single cell seen at the Italy demonstration.
    For now the news has come in a bit distant and subjective form.  While little is known about the technology, Rossi has built up a lot of street type credibility – and there is no motive in sight for some sort of financial or business misbehaving.
    This writer isn’t doing a lot of thinking or imagining about the Rossi effort.  But there is certainly a discernable feeling of satisfaction that the science so long denigrated has a foothold in the real world of business and industry.
    When the orders fill and business reduces the grid demand some in established science are going to be much more busy with the “why weren’t we” while others will be looking for what other cold fusion ideas might go commercial.  Not putting your pants down on purpose is lesson well worth repeating  – again.

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    What If Cold Fusion Is Real?
    It was the most notorious scientific experiment in recent memory - in 1989, the two men who claimed to have discovered the energy of the future were condemned as imposters and exiled by their peers. Can it possibly make sense to reopen the cold fusion investigation? A surprising number of researchers already have.
    By Charles Platt
    Almost four stories high, framed in steel beams and tangled in pipes, conduits, cables, and coils, the Joint European Torus (JET) claims to be the largest fusion power experiment in the world. Located near Oxford, England, JET is a monument to big science, its donut-shaped containment vessel dwarfing maintenance workers who enter it in protective suits. Here in this gleaming nuclear cauldron, deuterium gas is energized with 7 million amperes and heated to 300 million degrees Celsius - more than 10 times hotter than the center of the sun. Under these extreme conditions atomic nuclei collide and fuse, liberating energy that could provide virtually limitless power.
    Maybe.
    High-tension lines run directly to the installation, but they don't take electricity out - they bring it in. For a few magic seconds in 1997, JET managed to return 60 percent of the energy it consumed, but that's the best it's ever done, and is typical of fusion experiments worldwide. The US Department of Energy has predicted that we'll have to wait another five decades, minimum, before fusion power becomes practical. Meanwhile, the United States continues to depend on fossil fuels for 85 percent of its energy.

    Many miles away, in the basement of a fine new home in the hills overlooking Santa Fe, New Mexico, a retired scientist named Edmund Storms has built a different kind of fusion reactor. It consists of laboratory glassware, off-the-shelf chemical supplies, two aging Macintosh computers for data acquisition, and an insulated wooden box the size of a kitchen cabinet. While JET's 15 European sponsor-nations have paid about US$1 billion for their hardware, and the US government has spent $14.7 billion on fusion research since 1951 (all figures in 1997 dollars), Storms's apparatus and ancillary gear have cost less than $50,000. Moreover, he claims that his equipment works, generating surplus heat for days at a time.
    Storms is not an antiestablishment pseudoscientist pursuing a crackpot theory. For 34 years he was part of the establishment himself, employed at Los Alamos on projects such as a nuclear motor for space vehicles. Subsequently he testified before a congressional subcommittee considering the future of fusion. He believes you don't need millions of degrees or billions of dollars to fuse atomic nuclei and yield energy. "You can stimulate nuclear reactions at room temperature," he says, in his genial, matter-of-fact style. "I am absolutely certain that the phenomenon is real. It is quite extraordinary, and if it can be developed, it will have profound effects on society."
    That's an understatement. If low-temperature fusion does exist and can be perfected, power generation could be decentralized. Each home could heat itself and produce its own electricity, probably using a form of water as fuel. Even automobiles might be cold fusion powered. Massive generators and ugly power lines could be eliminated, along with imported oil and our contribution to the greenhouse effect. Moreover, according to some experimental data, low-temperature fusion doesn't create significant hazardous radiation or radioactive waste.
    Most scientists laugh at these claims. "It's pathological science," says physicist Douglas Morrison, formerly employed by CERN in Geneva. "The results are impossible."
    Yet some highly qualified researchers disagree.

    George Miley, who received the Edward Teller medal for innovative research in hot fusion and has edited Fusion Technology magazine for the American Nuclear Society for more than 15 years: "There's very strong evidence that low-energy nuclear reactions do occur. Numerous experiments have shown definitive results - as do my own."


    John Bockris, formerly a distinguished professor in physical chemistry at Texas A&M University and a cofounder of the International Society for Electrochemistry: "Nuclear reactions can occur without high temperatures. Low-energy nuclear transformations can - and do - exist."


    Michael McKubre, director of the Energy Research Center at SRI International: "I am absolutely certain there is unexplained heat, and the most likely explanation is that its origin is nuclear."


    Arthur C. Clarke, science fiction writer, futurist, and funder of Infinite Energy magazine: "It seems very promising to me that nuclear reactions may occur at room temperatures. I'm quite convinced there's something in this."

    Statements like these prompt an obvious question: If nuclear fusion can be demonstrated in anyone's basement workshop for a few thousand dollars, and could revolutionize society - why haven't we heard about it?
    We have. On March 23, 1989, Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann announced their discovery of "cold fusion." It was the most heavily hyped science story of the decade, but the awed excitement quickly evaporated amid accusations of fraud and incompetence. When it was over, Pons and Fleischmann were humiliated by the scientific establishment; their reputations ruined, they fled from their laboratory and dropped out of sight. "Cold fusion" and "hoax" became synonymous in most people's minds, and today, everyone knows that the idea has been discredited.
    Or has it? In fact, despite the scandal, laboratories in at least eight countries are still spending millions on cold fusion research. During the past nine years this work has yielded a huge body of evidence, while remaining virtually unknown - because most academic journals adamantly refuse to publish papers on it. At most, the story of cold fusion represents a colossal conspiracy of denial. At least, it is one of the strangest untold stories in 20th-century science.
    Utah
    Martin Fleischmann was 11 years old when his family fled from their native Czechoslovakia in 1939. Shortly before his father died from abuse inflicted by the Nazis, Fleischmann was taken in for a while by foster parents in Britain, where he became a brilliant, creative scientist. At age 40 he was appointed to the professorial chair in electrochemistry at the University of Southampton. About the same time he became president of the International Society of Electrochemistry, and was made a fellow of The Royal Society.
    Stanley Pons was born in 1943 in North Carolina, but chose to do his PhD at Southampton, where Fleischmann had acquired an international reputation. By the time Pons received his doctorate in 1979, he was well acquainted with Fleischmann. Later, when Pons became chair of the Department of Chemistry at the University of Utah, Fleischmann was a regular visitor. At one point he brought with him a heretical theory which he confided to Pons, during a hike in Utah's Millcreek Canyon. Under certain circumstances, Fleischmann believed, nuclear fusion might occur near room temperature.
    For more than five years the two men worked in secret, spending about $100,000 of their own money. They ended up with something very simple: an insulated glass jar containing deuterium oxide (commonly known as heavy water) in which two electrodes were immersed, one of them a coil of platinum wire, the other a rod of palladium - a precious metal comparable in value to gold. A small voltage between the electrodes decomposed the deuterium oxide into oxygen and deuterium (a form of hydrogen), some of which was absorbed into the palladium.
    This was high school chemistry. But Fleischmann believed that if the process continued long enough, deuterium atoms could become so tightly packed in the palladium, fusion would occur.
    Orthodox science said that this was absurd. Atomic nuclei repel each other; a nuclear explosion or insanely high temperatures (as in a device such as JET) are required to force them together. Moreover, laboratory fusion reactions have never lasted more than a few seconds.
    Consequently, Pons and Fleischmann created a seismic shock in the scientific community when they claimed their simple apparatus had generated low-level fusion reactions yielding heat for hours at a time. In March 1989, the University of Utah promoted the work using hyperbole it would live to regret: "Breakthrough process has potential to provide inexhaustible source of energy" was the headline on the press release. This seemed so implausible that The New York Times at first refused to print the story. But a reporter named Jerry Bishop, of The Wall Street Journal, was less inhibited. Partly catalyzed by Bishop's revelations, cold fusion became a major media event.
    The euphoria was brief. Many physicists were highly skeptical that a couple of chemists could have pulled off such a feat. More damning, they were claiming to validate their far-fetched theory via an experiment that wasn't properly documented. In their defense, Pons and Fleischmann explained that they couldn't reveal all the details because the University of Utah's patent had not yet been approved. They admitted that the press conference had been premature, but claimed the University had urged them to go public when another scientist - a physicist named Steve Jones - turned out to be pursuing similar work.
    These excuses weren't well received. "Conventional science requires you to play by certain rules," comments cold fusionist Edmund Storms. "First, thou shalt not announce thy results via a press conference. Second, thou shalt not exaggerate the results. Third, thou shalt tell other scientists precisely what thou did. They broke all of those rules."
    The Journal's Bishop was accused of compounding the hype. "But the job of reporters is to report news," he said recently. "If some authority, like a scientist in the case of cold fusion, says it's not true, you don't kill the story - you report the controversy."
    By the end of April, academic criticism was causing Pons to lose patience. "They don't have to believe me," he was quoted in a local newspaper. "I will just go back to the lab, do my experiments, and build my power plant."
    But his vilification had barely begun. On May 1, East Coast physicists launched a major debunking offensive. A Boston Herald headline read, "MIT Bombshell Knocks Fusion 'Breakthrough' Cold." Hot fusionists at MIT found apparent inconsistencies in nuclear effects claimed by Pons and Fleischmann. The director of their department, Ronald Parker, dismissed the whole thing as "scientific schlock" and "maybe fraud."
    A few months later, with the full details still not released from Utah, MIT described its own version of the Pons-Fleischmann experiment and reported no excess heat. Soon, other hot fusion institutions, such as Harwell in Great Britain, were complaining that they couldn't make the experiment perform as advertised, either.
    It seemed evident that Pons and Fleischmann had precipitated a media circus before verifying their wild ideas, and now they would be forced to face reality.
    But maybe it wasn't so simple.
    Eugene Mallove, an MIT-trained engineer working as chief science writer in the MIT news office, was a cold fusion skeptic. Then he studied data from the MIT experiment, and the graph looked wrong to him. In a recent interview, he told me, "I realized they had moved the baseline to conceal a small amount of anomalous heat." At the same time, an MIT spokesperson denied it.
    Meanwhile, electrochemist John Bockris announced that one of his graduate students at Texas A&M, Nigel Packham, had collaborated on a successful cold fusion experiment. Packham had even detected small amounts of tritium, a radioactive by-product virtually guaranteeing that fusion had taken place.
    A science writer named Gary Taubes, who has written two books and several articles investigating allegations of fraudulent activity in science, went to Texas A&M on a fact-finding mission.
    "We thought Taubes was genuine at first," Bockris told me recently, speaking in a clipped, precise British accent that he acquired before he moved to the United States in 1953. "We exposed our lab books to him, and told him our results. But then he said to Packham, my grad student, 'I've turned off the tape, now you can tell me - it's a fraud, isn't it? If you confess to me now, I won't be hard on you, you'll be able to pursue your career.'"
    (Taubes has been shown Bockris's statement. He prefers not to comment.)
    According to Bockris, "A postdoctoral student named Kainthla, and a technician named Velev, both detected tritium and heat after we took Packham off the work because of the controversy. Since then, numerous people have obtained comparable results. In 1994, I counted 140 papers reporting tritium in low-temperature fusion experiments. One of them was by Fritz Will, the president of The Electrochemical Society, who has an impeccable reputation."
    Still, Taubes's report in the June 1990 Science magazine clearly suggested that Packham might have added tritium to fake his results. This reassured many people that cold fusion had been bogus all along. Packham received his PhD, but only on condition that all references to cold fusion be removed from the body of his thesis. Today he works for NASA, developing astronaut life-support systems. "I don't know why Gary Taubes wrote what he did," he says. "Certainly I did not add any tritium in my experiment."
    John Bockris sighs as he remembers the impact on his own career. He was investigated by his university, which found no evidence of incompetence or fraud. He was investigated again in 1992, and exonerated again; but his ordeal still wasn't over. As he recalls: "The people in the chemistry department created their own ad hoc committee for the investigation of professor Bockris. For 11 months I was under investigation by them, without ever knowing what the investigation was." He had to appeal to the American Association of University Professors before the harassment stopped.

    Other cold fusion researchers were likewise reviled - especially Pons and Fleischmann, who eventually retreated to the south of France, where Pons adopted French citizenship.
    Financial factors may have played a part in the fierce animosity exhibited toward cold fusion experiments. When a congressional subcommittee suggested that $25 million could be diverted from hot fusion research to cold fusion, naturally the hot fusion scientists were outraged.
    The bottom line, though, was that since most labs couldn't replicate the effect, most physicists sincerely believed that cold fusion didn't exist. They dismissed the few positive results as experimental error.
    As it happens, there was another possible explanation: Palladium is a quixotic metal. "If you chop a rod into three or four sections," says Bockris, "you get the confusing and ridiculous effect that the first section works splendidly, and the second doesn't work at all, probably because of inconsistently distributed impurities." Cold fusion researchers have observed that it is inhibited, also, if the heavy water is excessively contaminated with water vapor from the atmosphere.
    Pons and Fleischmann were not fully aware of these potential factors at the time of their press conference. A year later, the subtleties of cold fusion experimentation were better understood - but by this time, it was too late. The concept had been ridiculed and denounced.
    Vancouver
    Still, some researchers refused to quit. An international "cold fusion underground" evolved, trading data and theories which conventional journals refused to publish. In Italy, Giuliano Preparata claimed he had replicated the original experiment successfully. So did a Frenchman named Lonchampt, with support from the French Atomic Energy Commission. Pons and Fleischmann set up a new laboratory in the south of France, funded by Technova, a research group supported by Toyota. The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) financed cold fusion research at SRI International, and several other institutions quietly sponsored similar work.
    Some reports claimed unequivocal success: In August 1994, in document TR-104195, regarding project 3170-01, EPRI concluded: "Small but definite evidence of nuclear reactions have been detected at levels some 40 orders of magnitude greater than predicted by conventional nuclear theory." NASA Technical Memorandum 107167, dated February 1996, concluded that "Replication of experiments claiming to demonstrate excess heat production in light water-Ni-K2CO3 electrolytic cells was found to produce an apparent excess heat of 11 W maximum, for 60 W electrical power into the cell."
    In 1993, Pons and Fleischmann described a cell that had reached boiling point, and subsequently they claimed to generate more than 1 kilowatt per cubic centimeter of palladium - about 100 percent excess heat, lasting for more than 50 days. Fleischmann calculated that if this ratio could be upped to 100 kilowatts, "You could satisfy all the world's existing energy requirements with the existing supply of palladium."
    Alas, to skeptics this sounded like an embarrassing attempt by a discredited scientist to salvage his reputation. Few people took Fleischmann seriously, and his research terminated when funding from Toyota was cut off. He moved back to England and retired, while Pons reportedly became embittered and ceased working in the field.
    Today, a handful of laboratories still pursue cold fusion, but their work remains largely ignored. I knew nothing about it myself until Eugene Mallove, the former science writer from MIT, sent me a copy of a book he had written titled Fire from Ice, which provided an excellent factual summary. But Mallove also edits Infinite Energy, a magazine which Arthur C. Clarke had helped to fund; and this turned out to be a wild grab bag of eye-popping assertions and evangelistic rants against the establishment. In the March-June 1997 issue, for instance, an article was headlined:
    Low-Energy Bulk-Process Alchemy
    One-Tenth Gram of Thorium Becomes Titanium and Copper
    Most Sacrosanct Principles of Physics Overturned

    At the same time, buried among the far-fetched claims were rigorous reports from credentialed scientists. The result was schizophrenic, like a collision between American Journal of Physics and Weekly World News. When I saw that the Seventh International Conference on Cold Fusion would be held in Vancouver within a few weeks, I decided to go there to find out for myself just how wacky these cold fusionists would turn out to be.
    In a huge, grandiose convention center I found about 200 extremely conventional-looking scientists, almost all of them male and over 50. In fact some seemed over 70, and I realized why: The younger ones had bailed years ago, fearing career damage from the cold fusion stigma.
    "I have tenure, so I don't have to worry about my reputation," commented physicist George Miley, 65. "But if I were an assistant professor, I would think twice about getting involved."
    I sat through four days of highly technical presentations and was amazed by the quantity of the work, its quality, and the credentials of the people pursuing it. A few obvious pseudoscientists, promoting their ideas in an adjoining room used for poster sessions, were politely ignored.
    Stanley Pons, now in his mid-50s, did not attend, but Martin Fleischmann was there, pacing impatiently, as bad-tempered as a snapping turtle - though he could be charming when he felt like it. He looked younger than his 71 years, with a stocky build, a pink complexion, and long hair hanging behind a balding pate. Eyeing me with amusement through gold wire-framed glasses, he entertained himself by avoiding most of my questions.
    I asked why his lab in the south of France had lost its funding. "Minoru Toyoda was a great man," said Fleischmann. "Not the kind of man you find very often, who is willing to say, 'This is what I am going to do, and I don't care if you think I am mad.' After he died -" Fleischmann grimaced. "What you have to ask yourself is, who wants this discovery? Do you imagine the seven sisters [the world's top oil companies] want it? Does it fit into any idea of macroeconomics or microeconomics? I don't think so. And do you really think that the Department of Defense wants electrochemists producing nuclear reactions in test tubes? Eh?"

    I liked his defiant, gadfly style, but his habit of answering questions with questions wasn't very helpful, so I chatted briefly with John Bockris. Sharp-profiled, slightly bent with age, he moved from one exhibit of research results to the next with the fastidious, perfectionist eye of a watchmaker, tut-tutting over tiny discrepancies or unsupported hypotheses. Supposedly, this was the man who had either committed fraud, or allowed his grad student to do so.
    Finally I talked to Dan Cavicchio, a multimillionaire whose New Energy Partners VC fund has raised venture capital for commercial applications of cold fusion. Soft-spoken and low-key, with a neat haircut and a conservative suit, Cavicchio told me that in the late 1980s he made a fortune by buying companies that had good technology but were poorly managed. "We bought a capacitor company from Sprague Electric, doubled the size of it, and made it profitable," he said.
    When his partner left, Cavicchio looked around, found cold fusion, and became convinced that it was real. "I've been gathering money from other investors - high-net-worth individuals - under regulation D of the SEC, with a formal offering document. We're hoping to invest between $15 and $20 million. This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get involved with something that's going to change the earth, it's going to be so big."
    Of course, scientists outside the conference would have laughed at these ambitions - if they'd had any way of knowing about them. As far as I could tell, I was the only mainstream journalist who bothered to attend. To the outside world, it didn't exist.
    I found myself faced with an impossible choice: Either 200 chemists and physicists had spent the past nine years doing incompetent experiments and engaging in full-blown self-delusion, or a genuine discovery of great importance had been discredited so thoroughly, some ornery retirees and tenured professors were the only ones who still had the courage even to mention it.
    I had to learn more.
    Silicon Valley
    On a quiet backstreet near El Camino Real, a profusion of trees screens a sprawling complex of '60s-style buildings. SRI International is quintessentially Northern California: tasteful, verdant, low-key. Founded in 1946 to tap talent from nearby Stanford University, its innovations include liquid-crystal displays, optical data storage, acoustic modems, pen-input computing, HDTV, artificial heart valves, and speech-recognition software. All its research is sponsored by outside companies or government agencies, mostly seeking practical applications.
    Michael McKubre, the Energy Research Center director, is blue-eyed and brawny in jeans and a black T-shirt as he strides vigorously across the lobby to meet me. His longish hair and beard are gray at the edges, but he seems energized and confident, like a woodsman setting out on a hike.
    He leads me across a courtyard rimmed with eucalyptus trees, into a building of chemistry labs. Although born in New Zealand, McKubre has an almost English accent, and his voice is well modulated, as if he once took acting lessons. He's relaxed, witty, and charming.
    When I ask to see one of the laboratories, he opens a door for me, then pauses. "This was where the accident occurred," he says, sounding suddenly subdued. He's referring to a cold fusion cell that exploded after building up excess gas pressure. "I was hit with fragments in my side, in the vicinity of the liver. I still have pieces of glass in me that work their way up to the surface."
    Still, he was fortunate; the scientist standing next to him was killed.
    "I have nervousness that continues to this day," McKubre says, closing the lab door. "But the funding all came through me, so I had to carry on. Otherwise, the work would have ended."
    He didn't consider a different line of research?
    "No. If we're right, and there's a nuclear-based heat production mechanism, I believe the implications for humanity and science are too great for any individual to say, 'I don't want to do this anymore.' I have an ethical obligation to proceed."
    He gives me safety goggles before opening another heavy steel door, then introduces me to Francis Tanzella, who is energetic, enthusiastic, but has difficulty talking nontechnically. He's going to be my guide.
    This lab is big - perhaps 50 feet long, divided into small cubicles with panels of steel-framed half-inch Lexan providing protection in case another explosion occurs. Inside the cubicles are glass containers, pressure gauges, valves, and tubes where liquids surge and bubble.
    Watching cold fusion is like watching water boil in slow motion. First, sufficient deuterium has to penetrate the palladium electrode. This can take a few weeks. Then, if excess heat is generated during the next month or two, accurate temperature readings require extreme precautions to exclude environmental effects.
    "For years," says Tanzella, "we simply ran Pons-Fleischmann cells, six or eight at once, testing different types of palladium, electrolytes, additives, in order to find the best procedures and materials." He starts rattling off names and functions of the equipment in the manner of someone describing his hometown neighborhood. After nine years of this work, he doesn't just live for it, he seems to live in it.
    I ask him if he regrets the career choice.
    He pauses thoughtfully. "It was definitely a sacrifice. But - look, if you commit yourself in any direction, you always sacrifice the other things you've learned."
    McKubre was summoned by Edward Teller. "He didn't think cold fusion was a reality, but said if it were he could account for it with a very small change in the laws of physics."
    McKubre rejoins us and recounts his own background. He did postdoctoral research at Britain's Southampton University because, like Stanley Pons, he was impressed by Fleischmann's reputation. Unlike Pons, however, McKubre lost touch with Fleischmann after relocating in the United States. When cold fusion was announced, he was program manager in electrochemistry at SRI, funded by EPRI to develop sensors for nuclear reactors. By pure coincidence he was working routinely with deuterium and palladium, so - why not give it a try? He convinced EPRI to contribute $30,000, even though he didn't expect to find anything. "If the claim had come from anyone in the world except Fleischmann, I would have dismissed it as being outrageous," he says.
    McKubre underestimated the complexities of heat measurement. Still, after six months and $100,000, he achieved results. "We had two identical cells, one with a large palladium electrode, the other with a small one. Lo and behold, they both generated heat, and the bigger one generated more heat than the smaller one. This was enough to convince us that the effect probably was real."
    Subsequently one cell at SRI generated 100 times the heat that could be explained by any conceivable chemical reaction. Overall, according to McKubre, "the ratio of power out to power in ranged from 1.05 to 1.3. Our new calorimeter was accurate to better than half a percent, so, without a doubt, the results were statistically significant."
    Significant, and ignored - though some mainstream scientists maintained a discreet interest in the field. Around 1992, McKubre says, he was summoned for an audience with legendary physicist Edward Teller. "He asked probing questions, in better depth, I think, than anyone else on the planet. You could see what a giant intellect he must have been in his time. I was subjected to this interrogation for four hours. At the end of it Teller said that he did not think that cold fusion was a reality, but if it were, he could account for it with a very small change in the laws of physics as he understood them, and it would prove to be an example of nuclear catalysis at an interface. I still don't understand what he meant by that, but I'm quite willing to believe that it's correct."
    Currently, McKubre is overseeing a radically different experiment. We walk down an echoing hallway, into a smaller room crammed with equipment. Amid the steady hum and whine of cooling fans, a large, bearded guy wearing khaki shorts and a short-sleeved shirt is sitting in front of a video screen. He introduces himself as Russ George, 48, a former ecologist for the Canadian government who switched to cold fusion more than five years ago. He says he acquired his initial interest in science from his father, a nuclear physicist. "When we played hide-and-seek as kids," he tells me, "the children who hid carried radioactive ore, and the seeker carried a Geiger counter."
    George has done some contract work on cold fusion for EPRI and the Navy, but much of his research is unpaid. It's been a proud and lonely struggle. "I've been a voice in the wilderness," he says. "But I've been a visiting scientist at Los Alamos three times, also at a lab in Japan, I've given seminars at Lockheed, Lawrence Livermore, Rockwell -"
    Beside him is a softball-sized steel sphere, submitted to the lab by a lone-wolf experimenter in New Hampshire named Les Case. Inside the sphere are carbon granules coated with palladium, plus some deuterium gas under pressure. Case believes that if a moderate amount of heat is applied to these everyday, off-the-shelf items for a couple of weeks, nuclear fusion occurs - just as in a Pons-Fleischmann cell.
    Intrigued, SRI put the same ingredients into a sealed 50-cc stainless-steel flask and wrapped it in a heating element. A tube from this flask is connected, now, to a mass-spectrometer - an enigmatic steel cabinet standing behind the video screen. "This mass-spec is sensitive enough to detect the difference between helium and deuterium," says Russ George. "And the video display, here, will tell us how much helium is generated."
    Any production of helium would be stunning proof that fusion is occurring, because helium only results from nuclear reactions. No known chemical interaction can create it.
    "The problem is," McKubre puts in, "helium is also the leakiest gas known to man. So, any time it's been detected in other cold fusion experiments, people have said it must be getting in from ambient air, which contains about 5 parts per million."
    "Which is precisely what we have now," says George, pointing to data graphed on the screen. "Although it's been building to this level for the past few weeks, starting at 0.1 parts per million. We do sets of five analyses: First we check for helium in the instrument, then the helium background in ambient air, then the helium being generated by the apparatus. Then we check the air again, and then we check the instrument again."
    I take a closer look at the ultrasimple experiment. "You really think there's fusion going on in there?"
    "Electrochemistry doesn't require much hardware," says McKubre. "So, you may find isolated individuals doing valuable work. The problem is that even if they're very able people, they are not surrounded by a peer group that can challenge them and question them." He pauses. "Consequently, they may make mistakes."
    So, this is why SRI is running its own version of Case's experiment. They won't believe it till they see it themselves.
    "Within another few days," says Russ George, "if the helium level continues to rise, then we'll have the proof."
    Personally, I can't wait here for a few days; but I can visit Les Case.
    New Hampshire
    The road is narrow, twisting under a canopy of green. Quaint old houses hide among the trees, along with some quaint newer businesses such as Lumber Liquidators and Used Auto Parts. A yellow diamond sign warns, "Horse Crossing." Past a barn of unpainted rough-sawn planks, over a little stone bridge, I come to a dirt driveway furrowed like a streambed. The car tires spin in the sandy soil as I emerge in a clearing where a large, modern home has been built recently.
    Les Case is a tall, well-rounded figure in a plain white T-shirt, linen pants, and suspenders. At 68 he still has much of his hair, plus some truly amazing black eyebrows, like wild herbs scorched by some industrial accident.
    He leads me down to his basement, lit by fluorescent lights and crammed to the ceiling with cardboard boxes. An old Remington typewriter stands on a '60s-style metal-legged formica table. A workbench fashioned from massive chunks of lumber is cluttered with tools and hardware. An antique laboratory beam-balance stands in a glass cabinet.

    "Haven't finished building the house," Case explains, lowering his bulk into an old wooden office chair. "Haven't finished unpacking, either. I live in a slightly disorganized fashion. See, my wife died in 1987. She was a PhD chemist, her hobby was investing. I inherited her money, and have used a portion to fund my research."
    I ask him how he ended up doing this. He explains that he grew up in Tulsa, obtained a substantial scholarship, and spent five and a half years at MIT, obtaining a doctorate in chemical engineering. His childhood fantasy had been to get rich as a corporate executive, but he found he was better suited to lab work. He spent some years at DuPont, but wasn't a company man. "I was too outspoken. I got irritated, and left."
    He taught classes at colleges such as Purdue and Tufts. Along the way, he acquired 30 patents. Finally, he read about Pons and Fleischmann. "It was interesting, but I didn't like the idea of putting in 100 watts to get a net excess of one-tenth of a watt. I'm a chemical engineer, a practical person, so I wanted to scale it up."
    In 1993 he embarked on a courageous international odyssey that began in Japan, where a scientist named Yamaguchi had done interesting work with palladium. Case found him, inspected a palladium disc from the experiment, and saw gold fused into it. Since this must have happened at around 800 degrees Celsius, a huge amount of heat had been produced, perhaps by a burst of neutrons.
    Back in the United States, Case looked for a lab where he could rent time with a neutron detector. There were no takers, so he obtained a list of colleges in Eastern Europe, and went there. In Prague, he walked into an office unannounced and found himself facing the university's director, who fortunately happened to speak English. When Case explained what he wanted to do, the man agreed. "So I went there six or seven times," Case recalls. "I tried many different metals, all kinds of things. Then I thought, maybe a catalyst is needed. So I started making my own, and all of a sudden I got 1.2 degrees of excess heat from a sample that was palladium on carbon. I don't believe in magic, so it had to be catalytic."
    He was still looking for neutrons, which would confirm a certain type of fusion reaction. "But the neutron counter was very sensitive. Any time anyone in Prague turned on a big machine, the counter counted it. But, aha!" He holds up his finger. "Prague closes down on the weekend! It's socialism, see? So one Sunday I finally got a quiet half hour, and - there were no neutrons."
    He wasn't discouraged, though; he figured he must be looking at a different kind of deuterium fusion. Back in America he paid a lab called Geochron, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to check for tritium. This, too, was negative. "So," he says, "only one other fusion reaction could be occurring. Deuterium plus deuterium, yielding helium 4, plus a gamma ray. This cannot happen in the gas phase, so the hot fusion people never consider it. But when the gas atoms are in a crystal or a solid, it can happen, converting almost 1 percent of mass to energy, which I believe is the most energetic reaction that will ever be done on a macroscopic scale on Earth." He grins happily.
    Case found no gamma radiation, for reasons he didn't understand; but when he sent one of his devices to Lockheed Martin, at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, they reported that it appeared to generate an astonishing and inexplicable 90 parts per million of helium.
    Now he had the confirmation he was looking for. "Plus I was generating heat," he continues. "First 5 degrees, then 11 degrees, depending on the catalyst, which has to be unactivated carbon. Once I understood this, I made a prototype out of two stainless-steel gravy ladles."
    I ask if he still has it. "Sure! You're sitting on it!"
    I've been perching on the edge of another old office chair. I stand up, and Case retrieves his apparatus.
    "Later," he says, "I found war-surplus oxygen bottles, which are cheap. I cut them up and paid a welder to join them." This was his equipment that I saw at SRI. I tell him that so far SRI has generated only 5 parts per million of helium.
    "I know that. Russ George faxed me the graph. But it'll go up." He's totally confident. In fact, at this point, he's looking far ahead, contemplating that childhood dream of entrepreneurial wealth.
    "Scaling up will be critically important. First I'll do a 100-watt demonstration unit. If that works, the next step is a water heater. Ultimately I could build a boiler that makes steam and drives a small turbine, creating electricity. That'll require 200 kilograms of catalyst, of which 0.5 percent will be palladium. A few ounces. We can afford that."
    Limited supplies of palladium would still tend to inhibit his grand plan. A mine in Russia is unreliable, and there's only one other reliable source: "Stillwater mine in Montana," says Case. "SWC on Amex. You should consider buying stock! A medium-sized commercial power plant using my process will require 100,000 ounces of palladium, and the total supply is only 6 million ounces per year. I may have to find a substitute. Titanium and nickel are possibilities."
    If his dreams come true, the implications are endless. "With really cheap energy, we can make fuel from water and mountains." He grins. "Heat a limestone mountain to make carbon dioxide, mix it with hydrogen from the electrolysis of water, and you have methanol. How many limestone mountains do you think we have? An indefinite supply. Another application is desalinization of seawater. Los Angeles could get all its water straight out of the Pacific Ocean, with cheap energy for reverse osmosis. Then there's Australia - vast areas of very fertile soil, a good climate, but no rain. I envisage aqueducts bringing water in from the ocean. It could become the breadbasket of Asia!"
    "When I built this house," says Case, "I installed geothermal power. I get 3.4 times the heat of electric, but it cost a fortune. That's all going to change."
    Case is serious about this; he's actually negotiating to buy thousands of acres in Australia. "I have very low cholesterol, and normal blood pressure even at my weight. There's no physical reason why I can't keep going for 10 or 20 more years. I want to supply the world with energy - and not just for my personal benefit. There are areas in the world where deserving people could start making an honest living, if energy was cheap."
    In the meantime, though, he has to deal with the local welder, the patent office, and his unfinished home. We walk upstairs, through the kitchen, which is a bachelor-pad nightmare with dishes heaped in the sink, countertops piled with jars and cans, the floor strewn with boxes and papers, and a bed in the dining area. It looks as if a hurricane struck, and then nothing happened for a year or so.
    He ignores it. It's trivial. "When I built this house," he says, "I installed geothermal power. It uses a 700-foot-deep well, and the water goes through a heat pump. I get 3.4 times as much heat as if I used an electric baseboard. But, the installation cost a fortune." He gives me a hard, serious look. "This is all going to change."
    Sarasota
    Les Case isn't the first to hatch plans for commercial exploitation of low-temperature fusion. Clean Energy Technologies Inc. (CETI) is way ahead of him.
    I'm driving down a back street where unpretentious houses have been bleached and crisped by the sun. So far, in this neighborhood, I've passed three goodwill stores, one of them a drive-thru. On the nearby main drag is an AAMCO Transmissions service center, a funky Cuban restaurant, and Le Club Exotic, all done up in purple paint.
    CETI's headquarters is a ribbed-metal building that looks clean, neat, and new by comparison. Inside, it's a typical start-up, minimally equipped with utilitarian office furniture. A receptionist is fielding phone calls. In the adjoining lab, youngish people are debating test results.
    CETI's technology is based on five patents initially filed by James Patterson, now 75 years old, formerly an employee at Dow Chemical and a consultant for Fairchild Semiconductor, Lockheed, and the Atomic Energy Commission. Patterson codeveloped liquid chromatography, a fundamental laboratory measuring technique. He also developed core technology for identifying proteins in DNA. He long since retired, but as a lifelong tinkerer, he was fascinated by the Pons-Fleischmann process and devised a variant using regular water instead of heavy water, with an electrode composed of plastic beads triple-coated with nickel, palladium, and nickel.
    Gabe Collins, a young chemical engineer who dropped out of a master's program at The University of Alabama to work here, shows me a 6-inch glass container with gray beads at the bottom. "This is a classic Patterson cell. We've seen it take .06 watts and give out 10,000 times that. But the trick is in making the beads. They don't work reliably."
    According to Collins, it's the same old story: quixotic palladium.
    "Here's a different cell that I made myself." He's bright and eager, speaking rapidly. "I used bismuth beads and glass beads to create a series of voltage gradients. These cells have been up to the kilowatt range, generating 20 to 30 percent excess. This is the closest we've come to a home hot-water heater."
    Is it reliable?
    "It's ... fairly reliable." He laughs uneasily. "When they don't work, it's mostly due to contamination. If you get any sodium in the system it kills the reaction - and since sodium is one of the more abundant elements, it's hard to keep it out."
    James Patterson's grandson, Jim Reding, serves as CETI's CEO. Formerly an investment banker at Merrill Lynch, Reding is 28, shrewd, and ambitious. He readily admits that efforts to develop a commercial water heater have been frustrated by irreproducibility. "For the first two years," he says, "we had a large batch of beads that produced robust effects consistently. But that batch is pretty much gone, and we've had trouble replacing them. We don't know why, and it's going to cost money to find out."
    CETI has spent about $2 million on cold fusion research since its foundation in 1995, much of it family money, a large fraction paying for additional patents. To raise more cash, Reding has developed an alternate strategy. "We just finished a $2.5 offering about nine months ago. That enabled us to hire a president, Jack St.Genis, who was a very senior manager at Matsushita, NEC, and IBM. And Lou Furlong joined us six months ago as director of research, formerly at Exxon. Altogether we have 10 people here. Now we're going to raise another $5 million for three projects. The first is filtering tritium from waste water out of fission reactors, using a different invention of Dr. Patterson's. The second project is neutralizing other forms of radioactivity. The third is power cells. When the first venture creates revenue, we'll spin that out and use it as liquidity to raise capital for the other two."
    At this point Patterson himself wanders into the office, a big man with wild white hair, wearing a stained T-shirt and rumpled pants. He moved to Florida in 1981. His brother, his sister, and his 100-year-old mother live not far away. "I just play around," he says in a laconic, folksy style.
    "I got involved in 1995," says Reding, "to make a business out of inventions that he had left sitting on the shelf."
    Patterson chuckles. "Jim, here, was too interested in girls to go into science. Before that, he was my fishin' buddy. Used to cut up the bait and put it on the end of my hook."
    Power-Gen '95 conferencegoers were astonished by a cell that seemed to produce more than 1,000 watts of heat - from only 1 watt of input power.
    Patterson shows me his private lab, a tiny backroom in an auto-parts supply warehouse - an entirely separate business next door. "I like to have some peace and quiet," he says, relaxing in a La-Z-Boy recliner alongside an old wooden desk. Patterson's dog is sleeping under a gray steel lab bench. A wooden sign announces, "Hours Subject to Change During Fishing Season."
    I ask if he's working on the problem of the beads. "No, I've gone over that path already," he says. Instead, he's refining techniques to measure the impurities in drinking water. "I've got a meeting coming up at the American Society for Testing Methods. The turbidity [pollution] detector I'm working on now is at such a level, it will detect viruses in water. This'll be extremely valuable for third-world countries. But it's purely an academic venture."
    Back in the CETI offices, Reding agrees that it's "very difficult to keep Dr. Patterson focused." Still, he's determined to fix the problem of the beads, because past demonstrations have been so dramatic. Delegates to the energy industry's Power-Gen '95 conference in Anaheim, California, were astonished by a cell that seemed to produce more than 1,000 watts of heat, drawing only about 1 watt of input power. "By mid-1996," Reding recalls, "we had research relationships with the University of Illinois, the University of Missouri, and Kansas City Power & Light. They were supporting our research. Motorola even made a written offer to buy our company."
    When I challenge him on that, he goes to a file cabinet and pulls out a letter from Gregory E. Korb at Motorola New Enterprises. Conditional on a series of tests, it proposes a buyout totaling $15 million.
    (Subsequently, I track down Korb and ask him if the letter is genuine. "The Patterson cell was demonstrated in a Motorola facility, which was not the best environment to do calorimetry," Korb says, very carefully. "But Motorola did tell CETI that if they could prove the phenomenon, we would be willing to invest in it.")
    So, the letter seems real. "You turned down a conditional offer that could have been worth $15 million," I say to Reding.
    He hesitates - but only for a moment. "We're better off in the long run," he tells me.
    Illinois
    CETI has employed several academics as consultants, most notably George Miley, the respected nuclear engineer at the University of Illinois who edits Fusion Technology. While investigating a Patterson cell, Miley claims he found something even more astonishing than excess heat: residues of copper and silver that seemed to have been generated spontaneously inside the cell. Naturally, Miley suspected contamination, so he decided to develop his own beads coated with ultrathin metallic films, taking advantage of reactions that he believed would occur between metals with different Fermi levels. He used the beads as an electrode in a cell full of lithium sulfate and water. Result: many more metal residues.
    "After a run," he says, "I found three dozen or more elements, including iron, silver, copper, magnesium, and chromium." For detection, he used neutron activation analysis, energy dispersive X ray, Auger electron spectrometry, and secondary ion mass spectrometry.
    Miley believes the metals are created by transmutation - fundamental nuclear shifts that turn one element into another, just as ancient alchemists dreamed of turning lead into gold. According to orthodox science, this can occur only under extreme conditions, as in stars or nuclear reactors. To John Bockris, though, Miley's work is plausible. "Transmutation research has been reported in scientific journals since at least 1943," he notes dryly. "The first paper I could quote you is by D. C. Borghi, who concluded that he had produced a nuclear reaction at everyday temperatures."
    To most cold fusionists, though, transmutation remains hard to believe, especially since electrolysis is guaranteed to concentrate any preexisting impurities. "The case for it is not proven at a high level," says Michael McKubre. "Also - heat has practical applications, but what am I supposed to do with the ability to turn expensive elements into cheap ones?"
    "Some of the metals I've found are at such high concentrations, they're very unlikely to be impurities," Miley responds. He adds that his system generates heat, too. Moreover he requires only an hour, rather than days, to load thin metal films with deuterium or hydrogen, and the films don't vary much in structure from one batch to the next. This enables quick experiments that aren't plagued with inconsistent results. "We always get similar results," Miley claims.
    Los Alamos
    Can anything be stranger than this? Perhaps the fact that cold fusion research was supported continuously, for about five years, by Los Alamos National Laboratory, not only the birthplace of the atomic bomb but a bastion of the hot fusion fraternity.
    I follow Oppenheimer Road out of the modern town center, which is quintessentially Suburban USA, till I come to Trinity Drive, leading to a steel bridge spanning a canyon between two long, narrow mesas. An ominous notice warns that I'm entering government property, where "All Signs, Security Personnel, and Law Enforcement Officers Must Be Obeyed." Ten-foot chain-link fences topped with barbed wire are ornamented with dozens of yellow No Trespassing signs. Behind the fences, box-shaped concrete buildings dating back to the 1950s have had their windows blocked with sheets of stainless steel. The place looks like a low-budget military prison.
    At the badge office, I'm told that no paperwork has been issued for me, although an official decides that it can be generated if the man I've come to see, Tom Claytor, gives authorization. Then Claytor arrives, and he doesn't want to do it. "I can't show you the lab," he tells me, escorting me to the parking lot. "It could create - some problems."
    Previously, on the phone, he promised I could see everything. Now he seems uneasy, as if a new policy has been implemented. He takes me to a lounge area in a hallway above a library. This is where we will talk.
    Claytor is soft-spoken, amiable in a low-key way, but if he has a sense of humor, he hides it. He's the most conventional cold fusionist I've met: clean shaven, conservative, and neatly dressed.
    Initially, he was a skeptic. "We ran some experiments," he says, "and didn't get any results. Then we got some results three months later, but we didn't believe the results. Then we replicated them, and I realized there was something here. I think we spent about $300,000, mostly on labor - not a lot by Los Alamos standards."

    In a bland, easygoing style, Claytor dismisses the idea that he encountered hostility or skepticism. "I had a number of theorists backing me, because they were familiar with the limitations of hot fusion theory. They knew that not everything was known." He shrugs.
    Like Nigel Packham at Texas A&M, Claytor tested for tritium, partly because Los Alamos owns some of the most sensitive tritium detectors in the world. He found tritium sometimes at 100 times background levels. He also found neutrons. "We would see a burst," he recalls, "once in a while."
    Since I'm still wondering if there's a hidden reason why I can't see his lab, I ask if his work is continuing. "To some extent," he says vaguely. "But it's not being funded anymore, because even though our results can't be explained by error, we can't produce them consistently. Therefore, we can't go to the program managers and ask them to give us money."
    Like other researchers, he was plagued by inconsistent palladium samples; so he used facilities at Los Alamos to refine his own, adding various small impurities. "This was our last large experimental thrust. We learned that certain palladium alloys would work part of the time, and the one that worked best was most complicated, with four different constituents. Also, we found that only very small fractions of the palladium seem active. Whenever we see a little dot where palladium evaporates off the sample, we get positive results. These dots are probably about 50 to 70 microns, they evaporate leaving a hole of 120 microns, and that's where it stops." He looks away thoughtfully. "If you could make the whole plate active, it would be very interesting."
    "Very interesting," indeed. The effect might be multiplied by a factor of 10,000 or more.
    "The trouble is," he goes on, "I'm not a theoretician, I'm an experimentalist. Normally I vary the parameters in an experiment, to explore a phenomenon. But with cold fusion, when I change something, usually it stops the phenomenon." He spreads his hands and smiles helplessly.
    Since we're in Los Alamos, I ask if he sees any military applications.
    "No, the energy density isn't high enough. In the first few months, people here tried to implode these things. They had neutron counters and gamma counters, they blew up all their equipment, and then they lost interest." He says it deadpan.
    So, he doesn't agree with Fleischmann's theory that the Department of Defense may have pursued a policy to discredit cold fusion.
    He chooses his words carefully. "From what I've seen," he says, sounding very diplomatic, "there are a number of people who approve of the research in Washington, DC - and a number who disapprove."
    That's the closest Tom Claytor will come to admitting that he's had any opposition at all, pursuing his research into cold fusion.
    Santa Fe
    Thirty-five miles southeast of Los Alamos, adobe-style houses hide discreetly among juniper trees in the hills overlooking Santa Fe. I turn up a muddy dirt road that winds around a mountain, through virgin forest. Near the summit I find the home of Edmund Storms, formerly at Los Alamos, now maintaining his own little cold fusion lab in his basement.
    He's tall and fit, gray-bearded, with a friendly, animated manner. He and his wife Carol designed and built this house themselves, and even some of the furniture in it, such as the fine rolltop desk in Storms's office. In manila folders stacked on oak shelves, he has archived more than 2,000 papers and reference works relating to cold fusion. I'm hoping he will provide me with an overview; a definitive summation.
    In 1989 he remembers literally hundreds of people at Los Alamos taking an interest in cold fusion. "Chemists were actually speaking to physicists! Everyone got involved. We met once a week, more than 100 people. There must have been 50 attempts to reproduce the effect."
    Only three succeeded. One was Claytor's, another was by Howard Menlove, a world expert in neutron detection, and the third was by Storms. "That's how I met my wife, Carol. We started working together, trying to detect tritium. We didn't succeed often, and there wasn't very much of it, but we did find some, and it was abnormal."
    They succeeded partly because they were inhumanly persistent. "We tried every conceivable permutation of every variable we could think of. We ran 250 experiments, taking one whole year, and I think 13 made excess tritium. Skeptics, of course, said the palladium must have been contaminated with tritium at the start. So, we did another experiment, contaminating palladium with tritium on purpose, to find out how it would behave; and sure enough, it behaved differently."
    Still, other scientists found Storms's results hard to believe. "After an exhaustive inquiry, no one could say that my work was wrong. But the theoreticians mobilized their negative arguments in an overwhelming onslaught, and the lab administration grew weary of the whole controversy. After a year, they weren't interested in going any further. They wouldn't call you an idiot at Los Alamos. They'd even allow your work to be published. They just pretended it didn't exist."
    So he quit. "About six years ago, we decided to build our house and set up our own lab to do things the way we wanted to."
    He takes me downstairs, through a big woodworking shop, into a back room where the walls are plain gray cinder block. Here he has glass-blowing equipment to create his own labware, a lathe, power supplies, monitoring and analysis gear, and calorimeters in insulated cabinets. "It's fairly crude and homemade," says Storms, although to me it seems more sophisticated than anything I've seen outside of SRI.
    He shows me a box containing 90 little tags of palladium. "I've learned," he says, "how to determine in advance whether a sample will work. I can predict it with about 50-50 accuracy, where it was a 1-in-20 chance before."
    He analyzes various properties of the metal, such as its tendency to crack, which limits its absorption of deuterium. "That's what makes cold fusion so nonreproducible," says Storms. "You have to load the palladium with very high concentrations, and many samples simply won't tolerate it."
    "Heat has practical applications," concedes McKubre, "but what am I supposed to do with the ability to turn expensive elements into cheap ones?"
    This, finally, is his explanation for many negative results. There's still a snag, though. Just because he knows how to select good palladium, doesn't mean he knows how to make it. "Pons and Fleischmann used to test samples from a supplier, Johnson Matthey, and over the years they figured out how to create palladium that worked most of the time. But Johnson Matthey signed a nondisclosure agreement with Technova, the Toyota-supported group that financed the research in France. The Japanese thought cold fusion would be hugely successful, and therefore everyone would want this certain type of palladium, and they'd clean up."
    Of course, it never happened. Technova abandoned cold fusion. But according to Storms the nondisclosure agreement still exists, and Johnson Matthey is still bound by it. (A spokesperson at Johnson Matthey would not confirm that an agreement exists.)
    "Someone should buy it from Technova," I suggest.
    Storms laughs. "Why should they? It's worthless! You can't make any money from cold fusion - at least, not using the Pons-Fleischmann method."
    And so, at this point, Storms is stymied. He shows me a paper he has written, with a grim cover letter: "Ironically, it is now possible to know why we failed but it is too late to follow a more successful path ... Without access to widely circulated journals, this negative attitude within the scientific community obviously cannot be changed. Even overwhelming proof, as demanded by many scientists in the past, can have no effect because no mechanism exists for it to be communicated to the scientific professions."
    I ask Storms if most scientists can be as conservative as he implies. "The majority may be bright and competent," he says, "but they believe what they've been taught to believe. I was like that myself, for a long time, till I began to find things which I couldn't explain. Now I see that we should accept everything, so we don't throw out the baby with the bathwater. Of course, when we accept everything, we accept a whole lot of crap. But let's talk about it, get people thinking about it and debating it. Then we can decide what to keep and what to throw away."
    Epilogue
    It's 10 days since I visited SRI International. I call Russ George and find him bubbling with enthusiasm, because Les Case's mix of carbon, palladium, and deuterium is now generating 10 parts per million of helium - twice the level in ambient air. The only conceivable source of this helium is a nuclear reaction, and George feels that it's the best-ever proof of cold fusion. "It makes all the sacrifices worthwhile," he says.
    But when I speak to Michael McKubre, he's as fatalistic as Ed Storms. "I doubt that any single result is going to change everyone's minds," he says. After all, skeptics have been unimpressed by other evidence of cold fusion. Why should they be convinced now?
    Instead of looking for the ultimate demo to browbeat unbelievers, McKubre wants to pursue a carefully thought-out investigation of the mechanism of cold fusion. "We have the space and facility to mount a large effort," he says. But he doesn't have the personnel. At one time there were 10 people in his lab; now, Francis Tanzella is the only full-time paid employee. EPRI is sustained exclusively by power utility companies, which have turned away from "nuclear" research, forcing McKubre to find funds elsewhere after 1996. He received some help from MITI, the Japanese Ministry of International Trade and Industry; but, "From October of this year," he says, "I'm not sure of our future. So, how do we plan long-term experiments? Where do we get the fortitude to tackle big questions, if there is no guarantee that we'll complete them?"
    At Los Alamos, Tom Claytor likewise is thwarted by lack of money. He would like to see a massive trial-and-error program to test every possible palladium alloy, since tiny impurities seem to catalyze dramatic performance gains. "This is how ceramic superconductors were developed," he points out, "by testing 5,000 different compounds." But no laboratory wants to mount such an effort for cold fusion.
    Consequently the field is languishing, while its key scientists grow older, and few newcomers venture in.
    Jed Rothwell, a former software engineer turned journalist who has taken an active interest in cold fusion since 1991, sums up the sad situation: "Very little happens. People putter along doing pretty much the same thing year after year. They are old and work slowly, and they have no funding and no equipment - so jobs that ought to take weeks take years instead."
    And as Ed Storms has pointed out, even when significant discoveries are made - such as detection of helium from Les Case's apparatus - there's no easy way to publish them. According to an estimate by David Nagel at the Naval Research Laboratory, only four of approximately 5,000 academic journals worldwide will consider papers that mention low-temperature fusion.
    There's one obvious way to do an end run around this barrier: Manufacture a marketable product. If a maverick such as Les Case or a start-up such as CETI could put a cold fusion water heater in every home in America, then the phenomenon would be undeniable.
    But these are longshots. If they don't pan out, and the current situation persists, we may be left with the grim scenario described half a century ago by the famous physicist Max Planck: "A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it."
    Alas, by the time a new generation displaces the old, the graying community of cold fusion researchers will be long gone. Thus, in a worst-case scenario, the new generation may have to rediscover cold fusion for themselves.
    Meanwhile, the US Department of Energy spends more than $15 billion each year, of which hot fusionists receive almost $500 million, secure in their knowledge that they are following the only valid path. And, to be fair, they may be correct - if every one of the hundreds of successful cold fusion experiments turns out to be based on incompetence, experimental errors, self-delusion, or fraud.

    Even if major funding is obtained for cold fusion, conceivably the phenomenon could suffer from problems as intractable as those of hot fusion. It may never work reliably, or generate enough energy to be commercially viable.
    One thing, though, is certain: If it remains the poor stepchild of science, starved into obscurity, we'll never have a chance to learn what we may be missing.

    Contributing editor Charles Platt (cp@panix.com) wrote "Die, Robot" in Wired 6.08.

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    Edmund Storms on the Rossi device: “There will be a stampede.”
    By rubycarat
    James Martinez surprised Cash-Flow listeners on March 1 when he played a pre-taped interview with Dr. Edmund Storms just back from Chennai, India where the ICCF-16 took place. ICCF is a conference where researchers in low-energy nuclear reactions share their most recent results.
    Dr. Edmund Storms is a long-time researcher in this field and author of “
    The Science of Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions“.
    James taped the interview in conjunction with
    137 Films crew filming their documentary on cold fusion. To be released in late summer, it is expected to make the independent film festival rounds.
    Here are some excerpts of the interview.
    James: “What are the new issues that are happening in cold fusion? What happened with that Italian discovery because that’s been written about quite a bit.”
    Dr. Storms: “They [Rossi and Focardi] found a way of amplifying the effect to a level that makes it attractive as an industrial source of energy and people in the cold fusion field have been working towards that, but they had not achieved that level of heat production, and so this was both a bit of a surprise and a bit shock, but a bit of a kick to get people moving a little more rapidly now. And it looks like the phenomenon will actually have an application.”
    James: “This is a major step then, would you not agree?”
    Dr. Storms: “Oh yes, It’s a major step. It doesn’t change the reality, the reality had already been established, but it has moved the debate from the laboratory into an industrial environment, and it’s put the phenomenon on the map now. People, skeptics can no longer ignore what’s going on, it’s such a high level, and apparently quite reproducible, that there’s no doubt that it has the potential to really be a serious competitor for a primary energy.”
    James: “So we’ve arrived, so to speak.”
    Dr. Storms: “We’ve arrived. It’s interesting we’ve arrived in a different car than we thought we were. Cold fusion started out using deuterium and palladium, and then Rossi found that it worked quite well in nickel and light hydrogen.”
    James: Regarding that, since I saw the 60 mins interview, and saw what the Israeli’s did over there in their lab, what did … the Italians do that’s different? Were they financed well? What made them be ahead of everybody else regarding this issue?”
    Dr. Storms: “That question is a little difficult to answer. The contrast between the Israelis, Energetics, … they were using – just to give you a little bit of understanding – they were using heavy water, palladium in an electrolytic cell, and applying what they call Superwave that allows the palladium to get to a very high composition. They had worked with the Italians to create palladium that could achieve these high compositions. So they were getting success in a more conventional framework.
    Rossi hit upon this somewhat by accident. He was using a nickel catalyst to explore ways of making a fuel by combining hydrogen and carbon monoxide and apparently, observed quite by accident, that his [apparatus] was making extra energy. So then he explored it from that point of view and, apparently, over a year or two, amplified the effect.
    He’s exploring the gas loading area of the field. This is also a region, a method used in the heavy water, or the heavy hydrogen, system. But in this case, it was light hydrogen, ordinary hydrogen and nickel and what happens is quite amazing.
    You create the right conditions in the nickel, and he has a secret method for doing that, and all you do is add hydrogen to it and it makes huge amounts of energy based upon a nuclear reaction.”
    James: “Wow. Alright. I have a number of questions since you said secret. Are they going to be transparent with what they discovered? If I were them, I would tell everybody how they did it, or are they not doing that?”
    Dr. Storms: “Well, you really need a patent, you need to protect your intellectual property. You want to be able to gain some economic benefit from the discovery. So far, they have not gotten a patent, and that’s always been difficult in the cold fusion field because the patent examiners simply don’t believe that it’s real.
    So, until they get a patent, they’re not revealing how they do it. Now, they’ve been upfront about
    what they can do and what they promise to do, and so far, they’ve fulfilled these promises. Once they get their patent, then they promise to reveal how they go about doing this.”
    James asked Dr. Storms a question from an unnamed listener who apparently knew this interview would be happening. The question?
    “Some said this is LENR, not cold fusion. What’s the difference?”
    Dr. Storms: “Well there is no difference. It’s purely a matter of semantics. There is a phenomenon, and that phenomenon allows a nuclear reaction to be initiated in a chemical environment, and it’s a very special chemical environment, it’s one that we don’t understand yet, we don’t have total control over it, so that it’s difficult to reproduce, although not impossible, it’s been replicated hundreds of times, so it’s real.
    But it’s a process whereby the Coulomb barrier is reduced in magnitude, in a solid, by some kind of … oh what would I call it … chemical mechanism. It’s not chemistry, but it involves atoms and electrons, which of course apply to chemistry.
    And so, what do you call it? Well it was called
    cold fusion by Steve Jones, and that stuck. And then later people said, you know, that’s not very accurate because you get transmutations, and it may not be fusion directly, so let’s make it describe a bigger area, so we’ll call it low-energy nuclear reactions [LENR]. I like the chemically-assisted nuclear reactions [CANR] description myself, but nevertheless, it’s all the same thing. It’s hard to believe that nature has only one technique for doing something so extraordinary.”
    James: “As far as patents go for this subject matter, are you briefed on that all the time, are other scientists made aware of what’s happening with that, or do you hear about it later?”
    Dr. Storms: “Well it generally percolates into the cold fusion chat rooms fairly quickly. There was a patent that was made known by Windom-Larson most recently, but that was granted, oh I guess it was actually filed back in 2005.
    Very few are granted, and most of the ones that have been granted, I might add, are absolutely useless as patents because not only don’t they describe very well what is going on, but in the absence of any understanding, their descriptions are not implementable, you cannot take the patent and then do what the patent claims, which is what a patent absolutely requires. It has to describe how a person that skilled in the arts can go about replicating what the claims may be.
    None of the patents do that, so technically, their not valid, and that ‘s a big problem, until somebody makes something that works, and then describes how they made it work and that’s where Rossi comes in, because he in fact does have something that works and once he shows how it works, he will have a valid patent.”
    James then asked Dr. Storms what type of press did the Italians get on their demonstration.
    Dr. Storms: “The Swedish newspapers, the Italian newspapers, the Greek newspapers, they showed an interest. The American newspapers showed none at all. It’s been on a number of blogs and talked about in a number of chat rooms, but no, it hasn’t reached a level of any serious importance to the American press.”
    James: “Why do you think that is now?”
    Dr. Storms: “Mainly because, it is institutionally the belief that cold fusion is not real, or if it is real, it’s so trivial, it’d make no difference to anybody. That’s institutional. It’s the myth that’s in, we’ll call it, the intellectual structure of the United States, and a number of other countries.
    There a few countries where that’s not true, and Italy is one of them. The government there believes that it’s real, and they’re doing everything they can to develop it. The government in China believes it’s real an they’re doing everything they can to develop it.”
    James: “So what is the problem? Regardless whether it was an American issue or an Italian issue, that should be all over the press here, and it’s not. It absolutely amazes me that this needs to be happening right now, what I’m doing. The press should’ve had this totally covered.
    Well, what’s next for you? Are you going to be following what the Italians are doing, are you going to go to Italy and be working on it, and try to do what they’ve done and replicate it where you are?”
    Dr. Storms: “Well, first of all, I haven’t been invited. Rossi is determining who’s going to watch this – he’s promised a demonstration in Florida that’s coming up in October. And there will be some people from the US government there watching, and hopefully they will be convinced that it’s real and that will change the attitudes.”
    James: “So they still – after this entire time – can’t wrap their head around it!”
    Dr. Storms: This obviously is not a rational world, and we, on many levels, do not have a rational government. It is very simple once you realize that this irrationality is present.
    Yes, people are trying to replicate what he did. But in the absence of this secret addition, it’s all guesswork [refering to the secret ingredient Rossi is using as a catalyst]. And that’s been pretty much true of all the work in the field. We do not have a good theory, we don’t have a path to follow, and so people do a lot of random searches, and when somebody – I’ll use the analogy prospecting for gold – when somebody finds a nugget, everybody runs to the spot where that guy found the nugget and everybody starts to dig there. Maybe some other nuggets will be found, maybe not.
    That’s what has made it easy for the skeptics to blow it off, and it’s made it easy for the government to pretend that it doesn’t exist.”
    James then asked why was the upcoming demo is being done in Florida.
    Dr. Storms: That’s where the factory is that Rossi owns. Rossi has business interests in the United States, he has a number of companies. He has a company in Florida and that’s where the cells are being manufactured.
    James: “So they’ve [Rossi and co.] already started the process then?”
    Dr. Storms: “Oh, yeah. The [recent demonstration] in Bologna was a single cell unit and it put out 10Kilowatts and it’s put out even more energy in other circumstances. He’s going to build a hundred cell unit in Florida, he claims, to try to run a Megawatt. That’s pretty difficult to ignore.”
    James: “What do you think they’re going to be able to do of a practical use? What are they going to use it for initially?”
    Dr. Storms: “Well, they’re planning to use this as a source of energy in a factory in Greece, and they’re making arrangements in Greece for this to be incorporated into an industrial application, an industrial factory.
    It has to be done in industry at this level because we don’t know if it’s safe, we don’t know it’s characteristics, we just don’t know enough about it to put it into individual homes. This is what he says, and it’s quite rational. It has to be explored, its characteristics have to be understood in an industrial environment, so they’re going to do that in Greece.
    Of course, he’s taking orders, and I’m sure there’ll be people from all over the world, where regulations are not so quite severe, and minds are more open than they are here, and
    they’ll buy units, and put them in their factories, and suddenly the cost of energy to those companies will go down significantly, and all of a sudden people will panic, and then there’ll be a stampede to buy these things.”
    James: “The irony of the timing of all this now, seeing what’s going on in the Middle East right now, everything’s going up at the gas tank, people looking at other energy things, do you find this unusual, the timing of this? This could have happened five years ago, and right now, with the complete and total collapse of many economies around the world, suddenly these guys in Italy come up with something. Did that surprise you?”
    Dr. Storms: “Well, life always surprises me. It always has these synergistic relationships happening all the time. No, it didn’t surprise me. It’s quite, what would I call it, simple justice. The system absolutely needs this, and suddenly it’s available. I guess it took both happening at the same time to change minds.
    You have to be desperate enough to want to believe that this is real, and then you have to have a device that puts so much energy out that you cannot ignore it, and you marry those two things together, and the skeptics are just blown away.”
    James: “If this is going to happen in Florida, obviously the press is going to catch wind of it, and if it is a private meeting for this demonstration, are you .. thinking that now all the big money people behind the scenes are going to get in on this deal and close it off, and compartmentalize it, and not give it to the public?”
    Dr. Storms: “I don’t think that’s possible.”
    James: “… because I don’t think you should have been cut out of it. I mean, you’re one of the guys that stood tall before anybody!”
    Dr. Storms: “Well I appreciate that, but I’m not being cut out of it, and in fact, I don’t feel that I’ve been cut out of it.
    I’m funded. We’re working to try to understand the mechanism and so we’re hoping to have a seat at the table when the final decisions are made. But Rossi is clearly in charge of his own discovery, and I wouldn’t find that unusual.”
    James: “OK, well, listen, I’m glad that you’re back, I’m glad that you’ve told us this, I’m glad that we’ve covered it here. I want to thank you very much Dr. Storms for always being there for for me and helping me out, and making this a public issue, so thank you very much, much appreciated. We’ll be talking to you very soon. You may be surprised – we may hit Florida anyway!”
    Dr. Storms: “Well James, I appreciate your efforts too, it’s efforts like yours that make it possible for people to find out what’s going on.”
    For the FULL audio interview, go to the Cold Fusion Now Audio page to download the March 1 Edmund Storms interview..

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    Energy Catalyzer:

    Lets get some clarity.

    Last Monday I had the opportunity to meet Ing. Andrea Rossi for a second interview, this time face to face, in order to collect new details about his invention. I have recorded over 30 minutes of questions and answers that in the days following the interview I summarized in the following text. On the basis of a gentleman's agreement I also was given a number of clarifications, off record and confidential, which reinforce my belief that people - and there are many- that think this has something to do with a hoax are like a half mule and half ostrich.

    22PASSI - Congratulations Mr. Rossi, the news of the invention of the E-Cat has been prominent in Greece where the Newco that assumes responsibility for it's production and marketing, Defkalion Green Technologies of Athens, is located. I imagine that Prof. Christos E. Stremmenos has to be played as a sponsor, who was an opponent of the regime of the colonels, former Ambassador of Greece to Rome, Professor of Physics at the University of Athens, and practically a national hero in Greece. In Italy the media have largely ignored the news and discussed it only on the web, often bitterly. The questions that I'm inspired to ask address the doubts and criticisms that I have picked up on the internet. For example, a very controversial question is if the E-Cat can be considered safe. ROSSI - The 10-kW modules we produce are safe and for years now we have been testing and using them with no problems. All possible measures of radiation from the reactor have been taken and the modules have always demonstrated the utmost safety. We control it as we want, switching it on and switching it off and we get power on and power off. It can never exceed a certain power because we have designed it so that there can be no Nickel-Hydrogen reaction above the safety limits and, above all, there is no radiation outside of the reactor significantly over the background level. It is true that with our current state of knowledge we do not know what would happen if we started scaling up the reactor from 10KW to 1000KW. In fact, we take care not to do so. To obtain higher power production we combine the modules in series and parallel, as if they were batteries. A 10 KW reactor connecting in parallel increases the amount of energy produced at a constant temperature and putting them in series multiplies the amount of energy produced at increasing temperature, because you multiply the TD. Combining the two architectures, parallel and series, you can get what you want and stay strictly in the same safety parameters. 22PASSI - We always talk about thermal power, right? ROSSI - yes, when converting to other forms of energy there will be a loss of efficiency. In the Carnot cycle efficiency is usually between 30% and 35% depending on the efficiency of the system, this means that if we convert 1MW of thermal power we can get 300-350 kW electric and thermal energy. 22PASSI - Then we could produce both heat and electricity at the same time.. ROSSI - With the Carnot cycle this is so. Of course nothing is created and nothing is destroyed: the energy balance should be 100. However, if out of 100KW of heat 35 KW of heat was converted into electricity and the other 65KW of heat remained, then you would lose a few percentage points in conversion. In summary, if the E-Cat provides only thermal power directly, only a heat exchanger is needed and you're done. If you need electricity only a portion of the thermal energy can be transformed into electricity, but you will also have the heat that remains. 22PASSI. Then a small village of 50-100 families with a 1 MW unit could be made more energy independent in terms of heating and electricity. ROSSI. Ah yes, this certainly.  22PASSI - If I understand correctly, once enough power is given to the reactor to ignite (in Bologna there was talk of 1-2kW), in this setup the machine might operate autonomously, without a power outlet or battery as the power input (on the order of 0.4 kW / h) is well within the approximately 3.5 kW electricity obtainable. ROSSI - Certainly. There remains, however, the problem of the drive (control system) that is still a little more complex: each reactor has implemented an electrical drive for safety reasons and much be attached to a current line. Precisely because of these controls, we can ensure that there are no safety problems inherent in our E-Cat from 10 kW, as well in our unit from 1MW, consisting of 100 reactors from 10kW each of which has its own control system. From 10 kW to 1MW we are able to maintain the level of safety gained. 22PASSI - the fact remains that there is still a scientific explanation of what happens inside the machine. If you do not know this how can you be sure you can control the reactor in every condition, even the most unpredictable? ROSSI - Well, first of all we have a pretty good idea of the theoretical reasons why the machine works. Many things remain to be specified and we are working in collaboration with the University of Bologna. But you see, even in the normal combustion of wood exactly what happens in reality, nobody knows. That is all the various and successive reactions that occur between the chemical formulation of departure and the chemical formulation of the final products of combustion we do not know exactly. However, designing combustion chambers in terms of safety is possible because you know what is the initial situation and what is the final situation. All of the security measures result from this. So, for example, we use more shielding than what would be sufficient, and we get a surplus of security as it is used in any plant. 22PASSI - This means that the gamma rays that Prof. Villa has reported found during the experiment on January 14, were simply not well shielded and made it out of the machine? ROSSI - With the University of Bologna we will proceed to do in-depth work on the range of radiation. The range of radiation that exists is necessary, because if it were not there, we would not have energy. It is a problem not only of shielding but also positioning counters. There are the greatest prudence in this moment on this point, at least until the patent will be approved. We have made internal measurements of the range of radiation produced, but we try to ensure that others do not, because measuring the range of radiation gets - as if to say - the fingerprint of everything that's inside the reactor. 22PASSI - What did you say to Celani during the press conference of January 14... ROSSI - Yes, why at one point I asked him politely (to Professor Celani) to turn off his meter is just that I know how smart... until I saw that it was checking into whether there was some trick I have left to do, because in a nutshell its purpose, with the machine that was brought, was to check if we had hidden inside the reactor any radioactive substance that was the real source of heat. In this case the issuance of the range of radiation would have been constant and precise, while in the case of the range of radiation that was measured there it was a discontinuous emission, crackling, what Celani encountered.  22PASSI - Forgive me if I repeat, this seems a fairly controversial issue, but how do you reconcile the statement that you have a fairly accurate idea of what is happening inside the machine with the fact that at the time the first theoretical model was formulated Focardi denied his lack of Gamma (I am referring to the report Prof. Villa)? ROSSI - In a nutshell for very nicely measuring the range of radiation we should create a 360 degree hole in the reactor to allow the meter to read what's happening there. But what that implies is giving away the technology completely in the hands of a person prepared to interpret the data. To design the systems security anti spy technology of this kind is not enough to surround himself with collaborators honest and like ... I myself, Andrea, would be in crisis if someone were to say "we will give you a figure that will change your life overnight and your next five generations in return for telling us..." An offer of this kind would severely test even the honesty of a Saint. 22PASSI - Then let me ask you how you would react if they were to make you the same offer to never produce the E-Cat? ROSSI - One must be in the situation to know how you would answer... But I can tell you that this project is my life and for me is priceless. 22PASSI - Let's go back to the reasons for your caution, we are talking about secrets of the other elements in addition to the nickel and hydrogen involved in the reaction? This is what would be revealed due to a thorough analysis of the range of the radioactive spectrum, right? ROSSI - Of course, just that.. the composition of the powder inside of the machine is the essence of the reaction, because using only nickel and hydrogen nothing comes out. So what compromise did we make? I had to put Professor Villa's counters in a second position and angle that I thought could be safe, to see something but not too much, but I was so careful that eventually the counters did not pick up anything. This is the problem. 22PASSI - Can you tell us at which point of the patent process is this technology? You are in the finishing straight yes or no?  ROSSI - I think yes, although of course the only certainty I have is when our lawyers (the Study Cicogna of Milan) will inform us the happy ending. I heard the lawyer. Stork a week ago for clarification, after the nuclear chemist Camillo Franchini had leaked the news that our patent was rejected in a bad way. The lawyer replied that he should have been warned first if this really happened, it has controlled half an hour later he phoned me reassuring me that those rumors were just crap! Evidently, Camillo Franchini was referring to disputes concerning the first phase of the trial in the Patent Office. 22PASSI - When one makes a machine like this and wants to put it on the market beyond the approval of the patent what other permits do you need? Could a problem arise due to the fact there is still not a theoretical model?  ROSSI - So, our client has already obtained the Greek permissions for the machine to be produced. For safety reasons we must provide scientific proof of the fact that the plant does not give rise to emissions of radiation and work in controlled conditions of pressure to stay within certain energies. The moment we show that we can perfectly control the pressure and temperature of the process, we will have no more problems. Lets go back to the example of combustion, as we said before: no one knows exactly what happens. Not only that, I'l tell you more, how atoms work, no one really knows if she takes one of the most recent testing of atomic models, the Marhoon, there is a chapter where you read "may be so, but might not be so." If the lack of a theoretical model would be a reason not to authorize the E Cat then at this point many machines used in nuclear medicine should not be permitted. For example, a PET (Positron Emission Tomography) machine, is theoretically, a very dangerous machine. How to work exactly the nuclear reactions that lead to the operation of these machines do not know for the simple fact no one knows how the nucleus of an atom functions. CERN has made that immense ring just to try and start to truly understand how atoms are made, because they do not know. But the PET using the same, regardless of the theoretical aspect (which is far from clear) you know the radiation that comes out during a scan and that the danger is under control. The same thing we do: the radiation coming out of our reactor is perfectly controlled, we have made thousands of measurements, we have made with the same experts who make the controls on the machines used in nuclear medicine. 22PASSI - I guess the day when the nuclear physicists and chemists will find a scientific model to explain what is happening inside of the machine at that point will be implemented and developed. We are just at the beginning of a new technology, like the first internal combustion engines of more than a century ago compared to today. ROSSI - Absolutely. the example is right: in 1905 to assume an internal combustion engine that produced the power of hundreds of horses would be pure utopia, they would say "you are crazy, this shit here is a bomb." Let's say that today we have scaled the machine to be secure in proportion to the knowledge we have. A century ago, the chemistry of combustion of oil in the cylinders was largely unknown, but the engine turned and they were sure, because at those powers of a few horsepower there was no problem. 22PASSI - We change subject, at the end you have chosen to produce abroad instead of in Italy does not surprise me ... ROSSI - No, in Italy, I will not do anything, apart from the research. Today I find myself in Italy because I'm working with the University of Bologna, otherwise I would be in the United States. 22PASSI - This I wanted to ask you. Why not in Greece and in the Unites States where there most activity on the technology is? ROSSI - In the US we have a factory producing reactors. In Greece there is a Newco owned by large European companies working in the field of energy. There are proposals and we have a contract... 22PASSI - One moment, this had escaped me. Are you telling me that there will be a factory in Greece and another in the United States? Yes, that escaped, the United States there is already a factory. The reactors that have been produced now and the first units of the 1MW plant are being built in the plant we have in the United States. 22PASSI - So the unit of 1MW that will be presented in October will be built in the US and brought to Greece? ROSSI - Exactly. In Greece, we are now preparing the plant that will produce for the European market, I suppose, but that will depend on what the board of Defkalion Green Technologies decides. 22PASSI - At this point can you tell us who are the investors from Europe and the USA? ROSSI - I'm sorry, they want to remain anonymous. We do not work to satisfy the curiosity of people, but work to produce machines that work and respect the will of those who put up the capital. I can only add that they clearly know very well all the secrets of the machine and is precisely why they decided to invest in it. 22PASSI - Confirms that the first customers will be private industries and not? ROSSI - Absolutely Yes. Also, because back to the discussion about safety, it is one thing to obtain permission to use these devices in an industrial situation, where there are adequate facilities and equipment and specialized personnel. An account is a house hold appliance that is bought at any department store and put in any apartment. It is evident that both technological development and approvals and certifications necessary to produce the appliance will involve much more time to be finalized and implemented. The industrial one is great because you have an industrial structure with employees trained to do maintenance and control. It is when you go to the home of Mrs. Mary that the approval becomes more difficult from an authorization standpoint, because there is not a person or an expert. Inside the E-Cat nuclear reactions still occur, even when not in use or manufactured with radioactive materials, or better, isotopes are produced with very short decay time, a half-life in minutes. 22PASSI - In short, the limit for now is how small, not how large. But this means that as you bring together elements from 10KW to derive units of 1MW at the same time you could put together units from 1MW to obtain higher power? To make a 100 megawatt power station by hundreds of, for example? ROSSI - Certainly. The unit of 1MW are 100 units of 10kW. At that point units of 1MW can be put together how we want. 22PASSI. It is science fiction to imagine that 50 years from now there will be a domestic cold fusion boiler in each apartment? ROSSI - It could happen in less than a decade. It would be subject to authorization issues much more complex like we said before, but that has already been exceeded for industrial plants under construction. 22PASSI. 22PASSI. Yes, but there is a middle ground very interesting in my opinion: the district heating. Already today there are entire neighborhoods that are using a single boiler. The infrastructure is already pretty packed, just replace the unit for natural gas with a cold fusion. ROSSI Certainly, this is feasible as of now, because we are still in the field of industrial application, even if the end use is residential, not going to put a device into an apartment like a TV or a microwave oven waves, in homes run only the hot water pipes produced by a power with all the safety standards that are needed. It is exactly what they will do in Greece, where they are most interested in that the electric heat. 22PASSI. We confirm that the costs declared at a press conference in Bologna, that is € 2000 per kW for the purchase of the plant and 1 cent per kW / h? ROSSI. No, these figures are in dollars and cents, when it comes to euro prices are lower, depending on the current exchange rate of course. I remember now a kW from traditional energy sources is about 13-14 cents.
    Italian journalist Daniele Passerini has compiled some recent dialogue he has had with Andrea Rossi, the inventor of the catalyzer technology which appears to be a cold fusion process, which they are taking commercial in a 10 kW heater at a cost of 1 cent per kW-h.

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    New Energy and Fuel

    Updating Rossi’s Cold Fusion
    February 8, 2011 | 2 Comments
    More than another week has passed since we had a look at the Rossi/Foldari cold fusion or more accurately – low energy nuclear reaction (LENR).  At that time most of the news was centered on the results offered by the professors at Bologna University who over saw the demonstration. Meanwhile others have offered that perhaps the reactor itself was packed with batteries, but the demonstration reactor doesn’t seem to be supported in a way to carry a large weight.
    Rossi-Focardi-Apparatus-Closeup-450x567
    Rossi Focardi Apparatus Closeup. Click image for the largest view.
    However one views the Rossi device, Rossi presses on to the commercial adoption and the patent process.
    That brings us to the patent. 
    One can see what is available publicly at this link taking you to the World Intellectual Property Organization.
    Rossi-Focardi-LENR-Device-Patent-Diagram-450x373
    Rossi Focardi LENR Device Patent Diagram. Click image for the largest view. Items are viewable in the patent. Click on the patent link.
    The prime point, or item up for debate, or more importantly if commercial use becomes practical is in a quote from the application:
    (Reactions) “are achieved by a method and apparatus for carrying out a highly efficient exothermal reaction between nickel atoms and hydrogen atoms, in a tube, preferably, though not exclusively made of a metal, filled by a nickel powder and heated to a high temperature preferably, though not necessarily, from 150 to 5000 C, by injecting hydrogen into said metal tube said nickel powder being pressurized, preferably, though not necessarily, to a pressure from 2 to 20 bars.
    In applicant exothermal reaction the hydrogen nuclei, due to a high absorbing capability of nickel therefor, are compressed about the metal atom nuclei, while said high temperature generates internuclear percussions which are made stronger by the catalytic action of optional elements, thereby triggering a capture of a proton by the nickel powder, with a consequent transformation of nickel to copper and a beta+ decay of the latter to a nickel nucleus having a mass which is by an unit larger than that of the starting nickel.
    The present inventor believes that in this reaction is possibly involved a capture of a proton by a nickel nucleus which is transformed into a copper nucleus with a consequent beta decay of the formed unstable copper (Cu 59 – 64) since the produced thermal energy is larger, as it will be thereinafter demonstrated, than the energy introduced by the electric resistance.
    It is believed that the nickel nuclei are transformed to copper since the mass (energy) of the final status (copper isotope) is less than the overall mass (energy) of the starting status (nickel isotope + proton).”
    The patent is a rich read to say the very least.
    Now just to raise the stakes the application discloses that at the time of presentment the inventive apparatus, installed on October 16, 2007, is
    “at present perfectly operating 24 hours per day, and provides an amount of heat sufficient to heat the factory of the Company EON of via Carlo Ragazzi 18, at Bondeno Province of Ferrara, Italy.”
    Against that the examiner opinion reels off a list of application exceptions that need repaired for approval (A pdf download). It would seem to the average reader that would be possible, and in fact the public demonstration and the results offered by the Bologna people may well be just the point for the demonstration in answering some patent objections.  Without knowing the patent process protocol, the status of the patent seems in limbo awaiting some response from the Rossi attorney.
    Rossi hasn’t been waiting around.  As it sits reports are saying that one customer – a newly formed consortium of energy distributors – should exist in Greece, and two others in the United States. These customers will sell energy catalysts in Europe and the USA. 
    It seems the Greek media knows the Rossi catalyser is going to affect their country.
    Andrea Rossi, founder and chief technology officer at Leonardo Corporation, gets a royalty on sales. Sergio Focardi is being taken care of with a commercial agreement with Rossi.
    At the core of this is a metal tube of 1-2 liters containing as yet unknown catalysts, to which approximately one gram of 99.999 percent pure nickel powder is introduced. It’s then pressurized with hydrogen to between 2 and 20 bar.
    The contents are heated by an electrical resistance source at a power of about 1 kW, which is then lowered to about 700 W.
    The reaction starts producing 10-12 kW of power, which in Bologna was used to heat water to 101º C. During the demonstration, 13 liters of water were vaporized in approximately one hour.
    The reaction forms copper – according to Rossi, higher levels of copper than nickel have been detected after the reaction.
    The observers, who could freely choose their measuring instruments, stated that:
    - they attached the hydrogen to the reactor themselves - less than one gram of hydrogen was consumed - no hidden connections were detected
    The other noteworthy point is the reactors can be connected in series to gradually raise the temperature to about 500º C, which produces vapor at the pressure of 55 bar, for turbine operation. Or they can be connected in parallel for greater energy production.
    One saving grace, both for the patent application and for the commercial prospects is the secret lies primarily in materials acting as some kind of catalyst.  Nickel’s reaction with hydrogen is not any kind of news, its something known and done for years.  Perhaps what Rossi needs is a process application in addition to the apparatus as an invention.

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    A United States Defense Intelligence Agency report on Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions ( Cold Fusion).

    Click on the file to enlarge.....
      2009DIA-08-0911-003

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    logo

    S & T » Technology
    Published: February 8, 2011 00:00 IST | Updated: February 8, 2011 00:00 IST

    Call for inter-disciplinary studies in ‘cold fusion'
    Special Correspondent

    08THSRINIVASANT_382909f
    The Hindu EMERGING FIELD: (From left) M. Srinivasan, chairman, ICCF organising commitee, Bikash Sinha, former president, Indian Physics Association; Mustansir Burma, Director, TIFR; and William Collis, U.S. scientist, at a conferencein Chennai on Monday. Photo: R. Ravindran


    Scientists on Monday called for inter-disciplinary “cold fusion” studies involving nuclear physicists and chemical engineers to establish scientific validation for the discipline of condensed matter nuclear science.
    Participants of the 16{+t}{+h} international conference on condensed matter nuclear science (ICCF 16) hosted by the International Society for Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, were of the view that though the principle of generating high energy reaction (through fusion) from low energy feeds was yet to gain widespread acceptance the relatively new branch would soon establish itself as a science with social applications, especially in energy security.
    Inaugurating the conference, Mustansir Barma, Director, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, called for a deeper engagement by the scientific community in the new area.
    Pointing out that the “disparity of scales” in the postulation of a lower energy phenomenon driving a high energy reaction was at the heart of the problem in getting a wider acceptance, he said some of the questions that scientists need to find answers for were how condensed nuclei can influence nuclear physics and whether the phenomenon can influence nuclear properties.
    Later, interacting with reporters, William Collis, US scientist, pointed out that the big difference with the new discipline of condensed matter nuclear was that it required very modest levels of investment. This has led to several small-scale individual and group research efforts across the world.
    M. Srinivasan, chairman, ICCF organising committee, said interest was reviving in this discipline and the potential it seemed to hold even though the phenomena was not yet fully explained in terms of textbook physics.
    US scientists David Nagel and Michael Melich said inter-disciplinary research was the only way forward to establish cold fusion as hard science.
    Keywords:
    nuclear scienceICCFTIFRhigh energy reaction

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    Step closer to low energy cold fusion plant

    C Shivakumar
    Express News Service
    First Published : 07 Feb 2011 12:22:39 AM IST
    Last Updated : 07 Feb 2011 09:37:28 AM IST

    CHENNAI: Scientists globally are a step closer to resolving the energy crisis after Italian scientists Andrea Rossi and Sergio Focardi recently developed a cold fusion device that is capable of producing 10 KW of power, said noted nuclear scientist M Srinivasan.

    Speaking at a tutorial school on the theme, ‘Introduction to the Science of Low Energy Nuclear Reactions’, he said the recent development involved a nickel-hydrogen fusion reactor that could produce a few kilowatts of thermal energy . Its significance was that it watered down the conventional theory of relying on high temperatures for nuclear reactions. Low energy nuclear reactions (LENR) or cold fusion refers to nuclear fusion of atoms at conditions close to room temperature, in contrast to that of well-understood fusion reactions such as high-energy experiments.

    India started research in this field in 1989, after scientists Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons discovered the phenomenon of cold fusion in March 1989. However, research suffered a blow in mid-1990s due to lack of consensus among mainstream scientists and the US denunciation of it.

    But now, the research has once again gained momentum. In fact Dr S Kailas, director of physics group on LENR at Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, announced that the group wanted youth to start working from where the older generation has left. The tutorial - organised by Indian Physics Association, Federation of Science Clubs of Tamil Nadu and The Science Club of Chennai - saw the participation of a large number of students.

    On the positives, Srinivasan said low energy reactors do not have to go critical and the coolant could be even water. No reports of significant levels of radioactivity are associated with them either. When compared to a normal reactor, it does not use uranium, plutonium or tritium.

    Research professor at the LENR laboratory of George Washington University David Nagel told Express that LENR could help produce clean water. Though products associated with LENR would come out in a year, it would take another five years before the reactors go commercial as it involved validation and independent testing.

    Unfortunately, the possibility that research in this field could yield an environment friendly source of power at low cost has resulted in competitions for filing of patents, said Michael Mckubre, a renowned electrochemist and currently director of energy research at SRI International in Menlo Park California.

    Lack of a clear-cut theory on how LENR works and how to control the temperature in such reactors are some other issues that should be addressed properly.

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    photo.cms

    Nuclear conference begins today Chennai: The
    TNN, Feb 6, 2011, 01.12am IST

    CHENNAI: The 16th International Conference on Condensed Matter Nuclear Science ( cold fusion) begins in the city on Sunday. The national steering committee for the five-day conference, which will kick off at the GRT Grand Convention Centre in T Nagar, includes a number of distinguished Indian Scientists.

    Addressing a press conference on Saturday, chairman of the organising committee M Srinivasan said the conference was being organised by the International Society for Condensed Matter Nuclear Science (www.iscmns.org) in collaboration with the Indian Physics Association (IPA) and the Indian Nuclear Society (INS). Dr S Banerjee, chairman, Atomic Energy Commission has agreed to inaugurate the conference.

    This is the first time the conference is being held in India. "We have received 64 papers for presentation at the conference. They will be presented by scientists from various parts of the world with UK, USA, France, Italy, Japan,
    Russia, Ukraine, Malaysia and India among them. Several scientists from China have also

    submitted papers and were keen to participate, but they have not been able to undertake the trip," said Srinivasan.

    Three allied meetings are also planned along with the main conference. The first of these was held at IIT(Madras) on Saturday. This was intended to familiarise faculty, research scholars and postgraduate students in colleges and universities and other institutions with Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, in particular with LENR (low energy nuclear reactions) so that they can plan undertake research in this emerging field.

    The second meeting will be held on February 11 to enable visiting scientists and scientists from IGCAR to discuss the behaviour of hydrogen and deuterium in metal lattices. The third meeting is being organised at SRM University and will discuss biological transmutation through LENR.


    Read more:
    Nuclear conference begins today Chennai: The - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chennai/Nuclear-conference-begins-todayChennai-The/articleshow/7434312.cms#ixzz1DDKAS3yk

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    photo.cmsQ&A

    'Our dream is a small fusion power generator in each house'
    Feb 4, 2011, 12.00am IST

    What is the role of Indian scientists in this research?

    Based on a small report in the Times of
    India on March 24, 1989 about cold fusion, 12 teams of scientists in BARC set up independent electrolytes and observed the phenomenon that was first made public by two US scientists. We were the biggest group responsible for the research at that time in the world. We found evidence of production of tritium and neutrons in the electrolysis. A separate book on the scientific findings was published by BARC. A US team visited BARC in December 1989, saw our findings and gave a positive report to the institute. Based on this report, funds were released for research in a US university.

    What is the current status of research in cold fusion in India and abroad?

    For all practical purposes, research in India has come to a standstill since the mid-1990s. I have been trying to keep scientists and the public informed about the breakthrough in nuclear energy. Unfortunately scientists still remain sceptics. Since 2008, some scientists in India have started to look at cold fusion with an open mind. But there's still a long way to go for research to begin. At the international level research is underway in
    Russia, the US, Europe, South Korea, Japan and China. Around 300-400 scientists are involved in the research. On January 14, two scientists in Italy demonstrated production of 20 KW of energy using hydrogen and nickel in a lab.

    What are the new findings on this issue in the past decade?

    Transmutation reactions in electrolytic and gas loaded devices is one of the important observations made by the scientists involved in cold fusion research in the past decade. Use of nano-technology has also played an important role in the last three years.

    What is the agenda of the forthcoming conference in Chennai?

    This is the 16th International Conference on Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, held in rotation between Russia, US, Europe and
    Asia. For the first time it is being held in India. The main aim of the conference is to draw the attention of the Indian scientific community to cold fusion. It is also an opportunity for the scientists to listen to the original researchers. Around 60 scientists from nine countries are participating in the meet.

    Why is there opposition to the cold fusion theory?

    There is opposition because the findings do not tally with textbook nuclear physics. However, scientists will have to think about nuclear and chemical reactions in a holistic way.

    What is the future of this research?

    Our dream is to have a small fusion power generator or pack with a capacity to produce 20-100 KW of energy in each house. Mankind needs a new source of energy and this could be a major source to meet the ever-increasing demand for power. The findings of this research could change the face of science.


    Read more:
    'Our dream is a small fusion power generator in each house' - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/opinion/interviews/Our-dream-is-a-small-fusion-power-generator-in-each-house/articleshow/7419731.cms#ixzz1D3hrb2v2

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    Italian cold fusion saga continues with new papers released
    January 26, 2011 9:24

    I helped my associate Buddy of Georgia, USA write this for PESN.
    Research papers out of the University of Bologna confirm that much more energy is coming out of the reactor than is required to run the reactor, including a self-running mode; and that radiation is not escaping from the machine. 

    Rossi_cold_fusion_aparatus_scintillator_300
    photo of the apparatus. One scintillator detector is pointing upwards and is visible in the center of the picture, while the other is partially covered in the back.
    (
    Source: Mauro Villa; Jan. 26, 2011).

    Figure 1: A
    A couple of weeks ago we reported that the Italian inventor Andrea Rossi has announced that he has a commercial ready cold fusion reactor that is safe and reliable, capable of producing 10 kW of heat; and is in process of going into production, with a 1 MW plant being built ganging 125 of these units together. Rossi has allowed outside scientists to perform tests on the module and report on their findings. Papers on these tests have begun to emerge.  In a paper that came out Monday morning (Italy time), Prof. Giuseppe Levi of the University of Bologna describes two experiments. One was performed in December of 2010 and the other on January 14 of 2011, during the public demonstration and press conference. In both experiments Andrea Rossi's cold fusion reactor is tested to determine if more energy is output than input. The results are clear that in both tests much more energy was produced than was put into the system.  In the first test, Levi reported that Rossi's device actually self-sustained for approximately 15 minutes after all power was cut, until they had to stop the reactor by applying additional cooling water. When reading the document one may realize that the output energy for the second test is missing. However, this information has already been posted and was over 10KW.  In the second paper (ref, pp. 7-12) Dr. David Bianchini, also of the University of Bologna, describes his tests to determine if radioactivity is escaping the system for safety purposes, during the January 14 demonstration. He detects no radiation escaping the shielding of the system.  Another paper describing a test to determine what radiation is produced inside of the cell is posted here. Then, in a paper that came out on January 26, Mauro Villa, also with Bologna University, describes his tests to determine if any gamma radiation is being produced inside of the reactor. Two holes were placed in the shielding to allow radiation to be measured. No gamma radiation significantly above background was detected. However, he does not discount the possibility of lower energy gamma rays being produced.  Classical physics predicts that some type of radiation must be produced by the system to heat the components of the reactor to heat the water. Villa had predicted that gamma radiation is the most likely culprit, but his measurements did not verify that premise. So either this is not a fusion reaction according to classical physics, or there is some kind of new physics taking place that is yet to be understood and characterized. Some speculate that perhaps X-Rays are being emitted. The lead shielding in the apparatus is consistent with this presumption. This would be similar to the X-Rays produced by Black Light Power's system involving Hydrinos – a smaller, more energetic variation of the hydrogen atom. (Ref.) Rossi claims that outside scientists have tested his system to determine if X Rays are produced, but has not yet received the results. Since these new papers have been posted many new messages have been posted in the comment section of the Journal of Nuclear Physics blog run by Rossi. Some of his answers confirm what he has already said, and others give new information. For example,
    • He is starting a 1 year research program with the University of Bologna to investigate the reactions inside of the reactor.
    • Work on the 1MW plant is nearing completion and will open in a "matter of months." The wait is mostly due to "authorization" issues. 
    • The volume of the reactor is 1 liter. 
    • They expect their patent that covers their catalysts and special processes done to the nickel to be granted by the time the 1MW plant opens. 
    • When the patent is granted they will release full details on the catalysts, special processes done to the nickel, construction of the device, etc.
    • They have ran their device in self-sustain mode for several hours at a time. 
    So where are we at this point? It seems more people think this technology is legitimate. Of course the final proof of this will be when the 1MW plant opens.  Also, the news about his technology is spreading. Articles have appeared in EE Times, Zero Hedge, Popular Science, Discovery, TechEye, Fox News, Gizmodo, Motherboard, Mother Nature Network, and elsewhere.  Most of these are highly skeptical and cite PhysOrg as their primary source, which cited our January 17 PESN coverage as its primary source. We continue to chronicle the main developments at PESWiki.com. Lawrence Rayburn has posted some comments in a forum, which we've compiled, in which he seems to think it wouldn't be hard to build one of these cold fusion reactors. He claims to have built a working Tesla Radiant Energy Collector some years ago, but he thinks this cold fusion reactor is much more simple and plausible for widespread implementation.

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    Cold Fusion From Italy Updated
    January 25, 2011 | 4 Comments
    Prof. Giuseppe Levi and Dr. David Bianchini, of Bologna University have issued their preliminary reports about the Rossi/Focardi January 14th and 16th cold fusion experiment in a pdf running 12 pages. The report describes the heat production during the preliminary tests on the Rossi “Ni-H” reactor.
    While ‘cold fusion’ works for a headline as an attention getter, or detriment or descriptor, the Rossi/Focardi device seems described better as a Low Energy Nuclear Reaction.  The principles prefer “energy catalyzer” for their discussion.  Whichever description works best, the Bologna pdf offers some interesting information.
    To start with Bianchini’s radiation examination and report turned up, well.  Nothing of note.
    Rossi-Focardi-Energy-Catalyst-Reactor-450x334
    Rossi Focardi Energy Catalyst Reactor. Click image for the largest view.
    Levi’s heat production report offers a good photograph and block diagram of the device.  From the narrative and the block diagram one can discern what is happening.  It seems the reactor contains the specially prepared nickel and is flooded with hydrogen gas with some heat input delivered with electric resistance heating at about 1100 watts to start and reducing to about 400 watts when the reaction initiates.  A flow of water is introduced and rises in temperature to just over boiling producing a steam source.
    Rossi-Focardi-Energy-Catalyst-Reactor-Block-Diagram-Schematic-450x338
    Rossi Focardi Energy Catalyst Reactor Block Diagram Schematic. Click image for the largest view.
    The discussion offers that Levi inspected the device looking for electrical, water and hydrogen connections.  He found a 220V 50Hz EU standard line feeding to the control box that connected with five wires to the reactor, a water inlet line and water / steam outlet line, and the hydrogen connection.  Levi even elevated the control box to examine its weightiness.
    The measurements included watts at the 220V line, ambient air temperature, water temperature, and steam temperature.  The second test included a dry steam measure.  Values for the hydrogen rely on tank weights before and after.  Water flux was set and measured by collecting and then weighing an amount of water in a container in a given time.
    A paraphrased edited quote from the University of Bologna scientist runs:
    After approx 30 minutes a kink can be observed in the yellow line (A line recording the steam output temperature). Because input power (1120 W also checked via a clamp amperometer) was not modified (see fig. 5 later) this change of slope testifies that the reactor was ignited. After a startup period approx 20 minutes long a second kink appears where the reactor power was almost constant taking the water to ≈75°C.  A second kink is found when the reactor fully ignites raising the measured temperature to 101.6 +/-0.1°C and transforming the water into steam. At this point we can try a simple calculus in order to evaluate the power produced. In order to raise the temperature of 168 g of water by 1°C, ≈ 168*4.185 = 703 J are needed.  The water inlet temperature was 15°C so the ∆T was 85°C. We have 703*85=59755 J.  To this energy one must add the evaporation heat ≈2272 J/g * 168=381696 J. Total energy in 45 sec is 59755+381696=441451 J, and power is 441451/45=9810 W.
    Rossi-Focardi-Energy-Catalyst-Reactor-Temperatures-450x214
    Rossi Focardi Energy Catalyst Reactor Temperatures. Click image for the largest view.
    Prof. Levi concludes (edited):
    The amount of power and energy produced during both tests is indeed impressive and, together with the self-sustaining state reached during [Test 1] could be an indication that the system is working as a new type of energy source.  The short duration of the tests suggests that it’s important to make more long and complete experiments. An appropriate scientific program will be drawn up.
    Looks rather good, doesn’t it?  But its not hot steam at just over 100º C leading to some thought on how harvesting might be done.
    Another resource is Jed Rothwell’s technical brief from last week that offers an easily understood English look at the demonstration.
    Are there great gaping holes in the demo?  Just one – the potential for an energy source in the control box, suggesting now too late that the box construction might have been better done with transparent materials.  That would cancel the allegation that a battery or capacitor source was used to make up the needed power.
    Without making a hard conclusion, the Rossi/Focardi appears to work.  There will be a need for more disclosure to enable repeatable study.  But, Rossi understands that the hard proof will be the sales or leasing of units in operation and has written in a forum saying, “Our judge is the market. In this field the phase of the competition in the field of theories, hypothesis, conjectures etc etc is over. The competition is in the market. If somebody has a valid technology, he has not to convince people by chattering, he has to make a reactor that work and go to sell it, as we are doing.”
    If you need cheap heat, can stand the early commercial uncertainty and don’t really mind the explanation is scientifically and proprietarily incomplete, you might want to get an email off.  No law says you have to wait, at least not yet.
    Rossi directed commercial inquiries to info(at)leonardocorp1996.com

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    EE Times
    Italian scientists claim cold fusion success
    Peter Clarke
    1/24/2011 8:58 AM EST

    LONDON – Two Italian scientists have reported that they have successfully created a cold fusion reaction that produces energy at temperatures below 1000K through the fusion of nickel and hydrogen.

    The process produces energy as it creates a copper isotope which then decays to produce a different nickel isotope yielding further energy, according to an online paper authored by Andrea Rossi and Sergio Focardi of the physics department of the University of Bologna. The two claim to have developed a cold fusion reactor capable of producing 12,400 watts of heat power from an electrical input of just 400 watts. They held a press conference to show off their apparatus working on Friday Jan. 14.

    Conventional fusion reactions, where hydrogen is fused into helium, occur at millions of degrees. If room temperature fusion reactions could be realized commercially it promises abundant nuclear energy. It could in theory produce vast amounts of energy from the transformation of relatively small amounts of material and would likely transform global politics.

    However, there is a great deal of skepticism around the topic of cold fusion. This has been the case since scientists were unable to reproduce results reported by Stanley Pons of the University of Utah and Martin Fleischmann of the University of Southampton in 1989. Pons and Fleischmann worked on the absorption of hydrogen by palladium.

    It is reported that Focardi and Rossi have had their paper refused by peer-review publications.

    Nonetheless the reactor showed off by Focardi and Rossi is beyond the research stage they say, and reports quote the scientists saying they plan to start shipping commercial devices within the next three months and start mass production by the end of 2011. Rossi's affiliation on the paper is given as Leonardo Corp. Leonardo (Bedford, New Hampshire) is a subsidiary of Eon srl a manufacturer of electric generators fueled by vegetable oils and animal fats.
    Low-cost energy claimed

    The reactor uses less than 1 gram of hydrogen and starts by consuming about 1,000 W of electricity, which is reduced to 400 W after a few minutes, according to PhysOrg report. The output of the reactor converts 292 grams of 20 degree C water into dry steam at about 101 degree C per minute. The raising of the temperature of water by 80 degrees C and converting it to steam requires about 12,400 W of power; a power gain of a factor of 31. As for costs, the scientists estimate that electricity can be generated at a cost of less than 1 cent per kWh, Physorg said.

    The scientists also said that one of their reactors has been running continuously for two years, providing heat for a factory, but they did provide details, PhysOrg added.

    Despite abounding skepticism a number of groups continue to work on low-temperature fusion reactions. In March 2009 U.S. Navy researchers claimed to have experimentally confirmed cold fusion reactions in a presentation at the American Chemical Society's annual meeting.  "We have compelling evidence that fusion reactions are occurring" at room temperature, said Pamela Mosier-Boss, a scientist with the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (San Diego) at that time.


    Related links and articles:

    A new energy source from nuclear fusion

    PhysOrg article

    News article:

    Cold fusion experimentally confirmed

    YouTube videos from Bologna event (in Italian):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L4JUJhkpc3I (40 mins)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVZR5Qx1KOU (14 mins)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-Ru1eAymvE (15 mins)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmHZrhTQhUc (12 mins )

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    English interpretation from the Rossi experiment in Bologna, Italy 1/14/2011


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    Hope Grows as Journals Weigh in on Italian Cold Fusion Breakthrough
    http://www.journal-of-nuclear-physics.com
    Focari and Piantelli have published many papers claiming excess heat from nickel. Here is
    an example from 1998. No attempts to replicate this by other groups have been reported, although Mills and others have claimed excess heat from nickel using somewhat different methods. Rossi received a patent [PCT application].
    We have complied a
    Brief Technical Description of the Experiment [reprinted above] from various sources, including photographs of the equipment, and we have uploaded a short interview with Prof. Levi who conducted the experiment, and a list of recommendations for further tests by Prof. Nagel.
    Here is a description of the calorimetry:
    Brief Description of the Calorimetry in the Rossi Experiment at U. Bologna, January 14, 2011 by Jed Rothwell
    The experiment has been underway at U. Bologna since mid-December 2010. It has been done several times. Several professors with expertise in related subjects such as calorimetry are involved.
    LIST OF MAIN EQUIPMENT IN EXPERIMENT
    A hydrogen tank and a method of measuring the hydrogen flow accurate to 0.1 g
    10 liter tank reservoir, which is refilled as needed during the run Displacement pump Tube from pump to Rossi device (The Rossi device is known as an "ECat") Outlet tube from the Rossi device, which emits hot water or steam Thermocouples in the reservoir, ambient air and the outlet tube An HD37AB1347 IAQ Monitor (Delta Ohm) to measure the relative humidity of the steam. This is to confirm that it is "dry steam"; that is, steam only, with no water droplets. Alternating-current heater used to bring the Rossi device up to the working temperature
    METHOD
    The reservoir water temperature is measured at 13°C, ambient air at 23°C.
    The heater is set to about 1000 W to heat up the Rossi device. Hydrogen is admitted to the Rossi device.
    The displacement pump is turned on, injecting water into the Rossi device at 292 ml/min.
    The water comes out as warm water at first, then as a mixture of steam and water, and finally after about 30 minutes, as dry steam. This is confirmed with the relative humidity meter.
    As the device heats up, heater power is reduced to around 400 W.
    RESULTS
    The test run on January 14 lasted for 1 hour. After the first 30 minutes the outlet flow became dry steam. The outlet temperature reached 101°C. The enthalpy during the last 30 minutes can be computed very simply, based on the heat capacity of water (4.2 kJ/kgK) and heat of vaporization of water (2260 kJ/kg):
    Mass of water 8.8 kg
    Temperature change 87°C Energy to bring water to 100°C: 87°C*4.2*8.8 kg = 3,216 kJ Energy to vaporize 8.8 kg of water: 2260*8.8 = 19,888 kJ Total: 23,107 kJ
    Duration 30 minutes = 1800 seconds
    Power 12,837 W, minus auxiliary power ~12 kW
    There were two potential ways in which input power might have been measured incorrectly: heater power, and the hydrogen, which might have burned if air had been present in the cell.
    The heater power was measured at 400 W. It could not have been much higher that this, because it is plugged into an ordinary wall socket, which cannot supply 12 kW. Even if a wall socket could supply 12 kW, the heater electric wire would burn.
    During the test runs less than 0.1 g of hydrogen was consumed. 0.1 g of hydrogen is 0.1 mole, which makes 0.05 mole of water. The heat of formation of water is 286 kJ/mole, so if the hydrogen had been burned it would have produced less than 14.3 kJ.
    January 2011
    On January 14, 2011, Sergio Focardi and Andrea Rossi held a press conference at the University of Bologna. They demonstrated a 10 kilowatt nickel-light water cold fusion reactor. See Rossi's web site:

    Full Magazine Story Link:
    http://pesn.com/2011/01/19/9501747_cold-fusion-journals_warming_to_Rossi_breakthrough/

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    Cold Fusion From Italy Nearly Commercial Ready
    January 17, 2011 | 5 Comments
    Friday and Saturday, January 14th and 15th of 2011 seem to be a threshold for energy production. 
    Sergio Focardi and Andrea Rossi at the University of Bologna demonstrated and conducted a news conference about their “cold fusion”, or Low Energy Nuclear Reaction (LENR) or as they suggest it be called, a “catalyst reaction” energy uprating device.  Time will tell to whom goes the technology domain, be it physics or chemistry or even a new field drawing on both.  (The link to the Journal Of Nuclear Physics Blog has three videos of the press conference – everyone speaking Italian – if English translations appear please advise.)
    Focardi-Rossi-with-apparatus-450x337
    Focardi and Rossi with their device in Dec. of 2010. Click image for the largest view.
    Perhaps the greatest significance is the team has started the patent process and have licensee agreements completed in both the EU and USA.  This seems to be fully real.  Moreover, the expectations of the team are to have commercial designs due out within a year with device production for sale or use in 2 to 3 years.
    The device relies on the ability of nickel to absorb hydrogen that while doing so releases heat, significant amounts in fact, the power needed to run the device is rating at 400 watt hours per hour to produce 15,000 watt hours per hour – from a lab bench experimental device.    In lay terms the drive is about 4 one hundred watt lamps for 150 one hundred watt lamps of production – a 37.5 fold gain – quite a fine rate of return.
    Brian Wang at Nextbigfuture.com figures the cost for electricity and heat, after the heat is converted to mechanical energy and on to electrical energy, to be “below 1 cent/kWh, in case of electric power made by means of a Carnot cycle, and below 1 cent/4,000 M J in case of thermal power production for heating purposes.” Even if Mr. Wang widely misses the mark, this is stunningly cheap energy.
    The device starts with a tripping of a switch and shuts down just as simply.  The product other than power is a weak burst of gamma radiation when powered off.  The consumables are the nickel and hydrogen and the device has an additive package for the fueling or reaction that is proprietary, which should be available when the patent is granted.
    The simple explanation from
    an earlier technical paper (pdf link) is the hydrogen atom of one proton and electron enter the nickel where the electron leaves the hydrogen to join the nickel’s electron array.  The hydrogen proton then is freed to join the nickel where it converts the nickel up one element to copper, a fusion that releases heat, in an unstable isotope because a corresponding neutron is missing.  The proof comes with the team’s examination of the nickel material after use – the copper is plainly there – found using an atomic microscope at the University of Bologna.
    It seems the amount of raw materials; hydrogen and nickel go quite along way in the uprating of energy.  In the analysis to measure the difference of mass the team has to use the charge for months, because what’s consumed in a day is in the order of picograms.
    The estimate now for material to production is to make 10 kWh/h from about 0.1 g of Ni and 0.01 g of H.   A little hydrogen goes a very long way.
    Other interesting facts, the device has operated continuously for as long as two years.  The team is working on megawatt rated designs.  The cause of the weak gamma burst on a shutdown is not understood.  The team offers a request for others to ponder that matter and contribute to the technology.
    Cold fusion or catalytic energy uprating is certainly coming to a peak of interest.  Steam was explored by the Greeks centuries ago with tabletop spinning devices while the physics took centuries to catch up with observations and the application of steam engines.  These kinds of things are the amazing facts that press irresistibly on science to explore, test, understand and explain.  There is no natural law that states functions of nature must first be explained before being utilized.
    Questions remain, the foremost being the used nickel laced with the copper isotope.  How stabile is the nickel-copper compound and what use can be made of it?  It will be some time before enough material is available for experimentation.  Nickel with a copper alloy might be quite desirable or problematic.
    Another question is the energy cost to produce the feed fuel, producing nickel, hydrogen and the additive package.  A 37+ to one return allows for a lot of investment and waste disposal, but getting to the numbers will need to be completed.
    Italy must be very proud of their team.  Whether the technology proves to be “cold fusion” or a “catalyst reaction” isn’t so important as the steady, repeatable demonstration is now at hand.  For researchers worldwide the tribulations of cold fusion are evaporating like freon on a hot plate.  Its also simple enough now that mass media could explain it without completely confusing the matter.
    The Italians have also started setting a benchmark on new technology costs.  Whether other ideas on catalyst reactions, cold fusion, or hot fusion, the price to sell energy will have a benchmark and a very low one just to start.  This has to unnerve investors and producers across the board on electrical power generation.
    One last matter to consider – a question asked about the scale for home sized units.  While wholly speculative, the early estimate is about furnace sized.  Note that heat would be direct for warm air and water use with only a conversion step for electrical generation.  Price, and it looks to be at this moment little other than greed to make the price very high for only heat, should be quite low.
    There is also the matter of if or how the Italian effort crosses with the BlackLight effort.  Let’s hope that if they do, no legal proceeding will hold the competitors at a stop.  But does it work outside of the inventor’s province?  Time will tell.
    The University of Bologna and all of Italy must be intensely glad of the native technology if the media can grasp the significance and amplify the spread of the news.  It’s also could be a huge embarrassment for those denigrating the early efforts such as those of Fleschmann and Pons.
    This writer suspects that a widely dispersed major exploratory effort will spring up for finding every possible element or chemical saturation that could release energy.  It’s not over yet; it’s just getting started.

    Authors
    Brian Westenhaus
    http://newenergyandfuel.com/about-2/

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    Some Interesting Technical Attributes Of The Cold Fusion Process As Claimed

    From the PESN writeup

    - Regular Ni is used even though other isotopes may provide better efficiency. They think all the isotopes work to produce the effect.
    - For some unknown reason, not all of the Ni in the cell reacts with the hydrogen to produce energy. The percentage of the Ni that reacts is very low.
    - Even though the percentage of the Ni that reacts with hydrogen is very low one kilogram of nickel powder should deliver 10 kW of energy for 10,000 hours. The consumption rate of hydrogen and nickel are 0.1 g of Ni and 0.01 g of H to produce 10 kWh/h. Note that for every picogram of nickel that is actually fused or reacts to the hydrogen, much more must be added. Not all the nickel added will react. So if you add 0.1g of Ni to produce 10kWh/h only a small fraction of that Ni will actually be utilized. When the device shuts off due to running out of fuel most of the .1g could be remaining.
    - Tungsten is in no way used. However, “other elements” are used.
    - Radiation is produced. However in the device demonstrated which is made for commercial use no radiation escapes due to lead shielding. The fact that radiation is produced is proof of a nuclear reaction.
    - In the demonstration device for every unit of input there was approximately 37 units of output.
    - A small percentage of the nickel is transmuted into copper. The amount of copper found in the cell is far greater than the impurities in the nickel powder. None of this copper is “unstable.”
    - There is no radioactivity in the cell after it is turned off. No nuclear “waste.”
    - All of the information needed to successfully replicate a self sustaining system is in the patent application (which is being held proprietary presently).
    - The power density for thermal energy only is 5 liters per kilowatt.
    - The hydrogen has to be all hydrogen with no deuterium or heavy hydrogen. Apparently, any heavy hydrogen stops the reaction.
    - This current system never goes below 6 times more energy out than in. During the test it produced 20 times more energy out than in. In the lab they have done similar tests and obtained 400 times more out than in, but it produced explosions.

    In addition to using water as the transfer mechanism from heat to steam to turbine to electricity, the fuel is pure Nickel powder and distilled H2O (Yes, water…!) which gets converted into hydrogen. According to their measurements on consumption of fuel by their reactor a kilogram of nickel can provide 100,000 KWh before it is consumed. The reactor can be connected in series to raise the temperature produced, and in parallel to increase the amount of heat at the same temperature (as if they were electric batteries!). They have also stated that there is already a European industrial group that have licensed the patent and will produce a large-scale apparatus.

    ni: usd 24000/tonne : energy output = 100,000kWh/kg
    coal: usd 125/tonne : energy output = 6150 kWh/tonne

    With this reactor 1 kg of nickel = $24 and provides 16 times as much energy as 1 tonne of coal. 100,000 kWh / 24(hours) = 4166 days (11 years) of constant supply at 10kW output. If the average house consumes between 2000 and 5000 kW/hour and given that there are approximately 6 billion people in the world and according to worldmapper.org there were approximately 1.7 billion households in the whole world in 2002 we would need to use between 200,000 – 500,000 tonnes of nickel to provide power for every household in the world for 10 years straight. According to Bloomberg the world nickel supply for 2011 is 1,585,000 tonnes. According to INSG there are estimated accessible reserves of 1.28 billion tonnes worldwide or enough to meet 2008 demand for 100 years. (Of course that doesn’t take into account exponential increase in consumption and population over the coming century). Assuming the world population doesn’t continue to grow and we are able to cut back on the use of nickel for other industries, what we are looking at is the potential for everyone in the world to have an abundant supply of energy to meet all the needs of a modern household for 1.28mil years at current rate of consumption. With exponential increase in population and sharing the nickel with other industries we will run out of food and living space long before we run out out nickel and hydrogen.

    Of course, claims of mastering cold fusion have been made in the past and have turn out to be hoaxes or scams. The interesting thing about this latest claim is that they have already been funded by the DOE and had their technology experimentally confirmed on US shores as well as in two separate institutes in Italy. Assuming the claims are valid the next question is how likely is it that this technology will be ready for mainstream application before the real power crunch kicks in for the majority of global energy consumers?

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    Report 41 - ENEA Frascati LENR "Cold Fusion"
    18:23 - 1 year ago
    Physics and metaphysics of a lost scientific revolution. Report filed by Angelo Saso, RAI-TV 24. http://www.rainews24.it/ran24/inchieste/19102006_rapporto41-eng.asp


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