Reporting a Lawsuit in LENR
by Marianne Macy©
“It’s a mess, ain’t it, Sherriff?”
“If it ain’t, it’ll do until the mess gets here.”
–Joel and Ethan Coen, “No Country For Old Men.”
The concept of journalistic objectivity haunted me when I went to college. I sometimes found it difficult to not feel emotional over topics I covered. For this reason, I secretly wondered if I should be a journalist.
In 1978, Gloria Emerson and Peter Arnett came to Hampshire College, my school. Gloria Emerson was the first woman reporter of the Viet Nam War for the New York Times. She had just won the National Book Award for Winners and Losers. Peter Arnett, the Associated Press Pulitzer Prize-winning correspondent, spoke with her to a hall packed with students. We were riveted in the presence of such greats and there was nowhere I would rather be. Little did I know I would leave in a year on the guidance of my Hampshire advisors, first to study oral history at Columbia University, then to work on the history of the New York radio station where my network program director grandfather had translated Hitler speeches in World War II. I would start working in journalism at age 22 and never return.
To read Winners and Losers is to come to understand what war does, during it, and after it. In the pages of her book are lives that would never be the same, but are not forgotten because of her reporting in Viet Nam, and her traveling all over the United States to find them. Gloria Emerson was as powerful in person as she was on the page. She and Arnett told us about their work, strongly, with a command of detail and description and passion. Someone asked her about her life in New York now, after it all. She said she wrote every day, and walked in Central Park. One day she saw a boy throwing a ball. Suddenly she was mentally transported to Viet Nam, to seeing a boy his age, throwing a grenade. She couldn’t tell which boy was which.
And then she started to weep.
To say we all froze and you could hear a pin drop was an understatement. She was elegant with her bob of black hair and her deep voice but now she cried in front of us with her shoulders shaking. Peter Arnett reached over and gently patted her back and she composed herself and they went on. The question one young student worried over was answered. You could be a journalist and get emotional. But you must channel emotions, yours and your subjects, into the hard work of finding multiple points of view. You had to be as fair as you could. Gloria Emerson committed suicide in 2004 rather than be left incapacitated by Parkinson’s disease.
LENR and PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)
LENR, historically cold fusion, is not a topic that has been devoid of emotion. The attacks that Martin Fleischmann and Stan Pons endured in the early years of the field have been, in some fashion, experienced by researchers all over the world. The stockpile of non-salubrious titles— Too Hot To Handle. Cold Fusion: The Scientific Fiasco of the Century. Bad Science: The Short Life and Weird Times of Cold Fusion—might provide some indication of that. Electrochemist Michael McKubre, who headed SRI’s Energy Research Center from 1998 until this year, was saluted by WIRED magazine as being “one of the 25 most innovative people in the world.” McKubre was a post doc at Southampton, where he met Martin Fleischmann. He was featured on CBS “60 Minutes” as having his LENR life’s work vindicated by government agency DARPA, who reported there was “no doubt that anomalous excess heat is produced in these experiments.” He must indeed be a very, very patient man to explain the same things over and over again, as he did in a 2012 interview upon Fleischmann’s death that, no, Fleischmann and Pons had not claimed that they’d achieved fusion in a table top device. They’d claimed to have observed an anomalous excess of heat in a palladium electrode loaded with deuterium, heat too great to be explained by chemistry. When they’d written their original paper, the question mark they’d put after the word fusion had been removed.
Physicist David Nagel worked on some of the original cold fusion experiments at the Naval Research Laboratory and continues working in the field to this day. While he claims not to be a patient man, Nagel’s report on the international conference in Padua last year was one of many times I’d seen him reiterate: “In over a quarter-century since the announcement by Fleischmann and Pons, excess heat has been observed hundreds of times in very different experiments in laboratories in several countries. The data shows that it is possible to produce nuclear reactions at ordinary temperatures.”
LENR researchers have found themselves in the unsought role of the Sisyphus of science when it comes to public opinion. The breakthroughs and progress made by the initial researchers stood no chance (in a public relations sense) against the onslaught of attacks on a nascent science. In 2007 I’d started work on oral history interviews in Salt Lake City with people who were there at the 1989 start of cold fusion, when geneticist Mario Capecchi won the Nobel Prize. A splendid thing, but Salt Lake Tribune columnist Rebecca Walsh felt it necessary to write this “may finally overshadow the ‘discovery’” (her punctuation) of FP. Walsh quoted former university research VP Richard Koehn saying “cold fusion was a ‘body blow’ to the reputation of the university.” “By the time I graduated,” she continued, “room temperature atom blending(huh??) was an embarrassment, tucked away in a nondescript building in Research Park, an episode better forgotten.” Apparently there were reporters unembarrassed by the use of their own idiosyncratic scientific terminology, inaccurate accounting of what happened to the researchers involved or the subject in general.
For years, the majority mainstream opinion was that this was a discredited area that had shown some promise early and failed. You would be told it was still pursued by some “believers”—a slighting term not representative of the world class researchers who advance this work. They are from major international research companies, universities, government labs, corporations, think tanks. Some were brilliant entrepreneurs. Their backgrounds and affiliations range from places like ENEA in Italy, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Osaka, Kobe University and Technova Inc. in Japan, Shell Oil in Paris, Amaco, General Electric, the Bhabha Atomic Research Center in India, MIT, SRI, the Naval Research Laboratory, the Space and Naval Warfare Research Center, LUCH and Lomonosov Moscow State University in Russia, Harwell in England, Aix-Marseilles University, University of Bologna, Xiamen University in China, First Gate Energies Hawaii….and that’s the very tip of the iceberg. “What I think is salient and a new trend,” a former higher up in a government lab told me, “is the number of people working in LENR right now who wish to keep what they are doing silent!” It used to be that LENR researchers were silent due to the pressures of working in this field. Now it is due to NDAs.
CMNS Having Its Moment
2015’s ICCF19, the International Conference on Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, in Padua, Italy had the largest conference attendance in history, with over 400 people, which topped 1992’s ICCF3 in Nagoya, Japan. ICCF20, to be held in Sendai Japan, will probably have more people.
The years of successful experimental results in the multidisciplined areas of LENR have changed things. A touching aspect of ICCF16 in Chennai, India had been the intelligent young students who came to the conference and expressed their wish to do research in this field, but the jobs were not there. On a last day panel, one of the speakers had said, “At least having the media leave us alone to work” was the up side of years of having the mainstream media miss the fact that cold fusion was an ever more serious story. But that peace and quiet was about to go. There was just too much solid experimental evidence piling up everywhere.
Things had also become encouraging in terms of investment into expanded research outlets and rebooted efforts into LENR. Physicist Robert Duncan, the research chancellor at University of Missouri who’d been the expert looking into LENR for the “60 Minutes” cold fusion investigation, became interested enough to follow his nose to what became the multi-million dollar Sidney Kimmel Institute for Nuclear Renaissance (SKINR) at University of Missouri. Nuclear Physicist Graham Hubler, a 40-year veteran of the Naval Research Laboratory, took the SKINR helm when Duncan went on to Texas Tech University to start a center bridging physics and chemistry (Center for Emerging Energy Sciences CEES) to search for the origin of the Anomalous Heat Effect. They would work with ENEA in Italy, where Vittorio Violante had done key studies in materials science, which increased the deuterium loading reproducibility in Pd cathodes. In 2014, it was Violante who toured Bill Gates through ENEA and briefed him on cold fusion developments.
When I asked, Rob Duncan could not confirm or deny that Bill Gates was funding CEES.
Another changing factor was the race for an industrialized product. Hence an increasing number of favorable—or at least“we’d better cover this in case we missed something”—international stories began accumulating. Then, in the last five years, came the unceasing promotional efforts of a new meteorite flashing over the LENR landscape in the form of an Italian inventor by the name of Andrea Rossi.
It was impossible to ignore Rossi. Even several years later when he had not yet produced a demonstration of his technology that was universally proclaimed to produce excess heat, he was acknowledged to have attracted attention to the cold fusion field in proportions it hadn’t seen for years.
Rossi not only didn’t wait for the ICCFs; he didn’t attend them. He gave demonstrations of his technology, put videos on the internet, ran his own website, and worked ceaselessly to get what he was doing out there. He knew PR. At one point when he was just starting to get up a head of steam and his ECat technology had not yet been named, I attended a meeting with him in the offices of a major public relations firm in offices above Grand Central Station. The firm leader was a colleague of a brilliant executive who had guided media for the company I’d worked with years earlier. Rossi was looking for financial support at the time and I thought he could use the introduction. He ended up describing to the public relations professionals how he had successfully hired writers to produce books about him and get them distributed in all the bookstores, making him “the biggest environmental hero in Italy” before events had turned his story in the opposite direction. He described the publishing costs, decided on the message he wanted to convey, hired writers, got the books written and designed, even told us how to get them into the bookstores. My friend who had arranged the meeting had worked for one of the largest PR firms in the U.S. and then been the public information director of a multimillion dollar corporation. “Rossi has a very sophisticated sense of this business,” he surmised. “He’s a really personable, charming, likeable guy.” The firm, upon instruction, sent a proposal on their services. Rossi sent a warm but noncommittal reply. If there was one thing Andrea Rossi didn’t need, it was a public relations firm. He knew how to do it himself.
I met Rossi in Rome in 2009. My husband Michael Melich, a research professor at the Naval Postgraduate School, had been involved with cold fusion since the start of the field, when his father Mitchell Melich (who had been on the advisory board of the National Cold Fusion Institute in 1989) called and asked him to read technical material. Through that connection he met Wilford (Wilf) Hansen, professor of physics at Utah State University and also a member of the NCFI advisory panel who took responsibility for the panel to evaluate data sets provided by Fleischmann and Pons. His report was presented to the panel and subsequently presented and published in the ICCF2 (July 1991) proceedings. Because of the integrity that he brought to that evaluation, efforts were taken to obtain data sets from Cal Tech, MIT and Harwell. Harwell co-operated and Hansen and Melich presented the results of their analysis at ICCF3 in Japan. On the basis of this work and other study, Melich concluded that the claims of Fleischmann and Pons were worthy of serious consideration.
As time went on, with our different roles, Michael and I had different constraints. The rules of the United States Government, which in 2009 Michael Melich had been an employee of since 1976, are as follows. If an entity—a person, a company, an inventor—comes to the government with what they claim is proprietary information, federal statutes define the responsibilities of federal employees who receive that disclosure. Under the federal statutes, there are severe penalties for a federal employee to disseminate the information received. There are rules that govern these disclosures and how they are handled.
Rossi was working with a private company who had requested such discretion. Therefore, in Rome, where I was covering the cold fusion conference for Infinite Energy magazine, the work day was coming to an end when Michael told me that we had to meet someone for dinner. “Who?” I asked.
“An inventor. ” he said.
“You’ve met with him before?” I asked. “When? Where?”
“I can’t tell you.” With that in-depth background and a quick introduction outside the hotel to Andrea Rossi—a slender Italian man, very well dressed—we made our way to an elegant restaurant where with great care, he ordered salad, pasta, fish. He was meticulous and explained each course. He and Michael spoke about what he was working on and I listened and asked questions. I heard how Mike became involved in starting to explore what he was doing. Rossi claimed to be closing in on producing a working LENR technology. He had American partners who had worked with the U.S. Navy and were familiar with the continuing interest of the Navy in energy technology. In late 2007 the company requested someone with technical interest and competence to view a demonstration. It took until summer 2009 before the promised demonstration was nearly ready. The demonstrations were organized at the company’s facilities and several government scientists were invited to observe four to five hour demonstrations of the startup of the reactor and its operation and shutdown. It was an impressive demonstration. Although independent electronic instrumentation was not available, a rough estimate of how much energy was produced could be made. What Rossi said that night was that he was heating his offices in a factory building where he worked with the heat from his invention. That certainly got my attention. As soon as we returned to the U.S., I began to look into his background and realized it would take a lot of research to properly report on Andrea Rossi. His history included extraordinary inventions such as a technology that converted waste products, literally garbage, into a useable fuel oil. But he had also gone to prison, a story that either cast him as a hero who’d gotten in over his head in mixed circumstances or the opposite. He had explained to us that his interest in cold fusion began in prison, when he passed the time by reading scientific papers about it. Whoever Rossi was, it was my husband’s job to be one of the people to try to figure out if what he had was real.
I could recite the Rossi backstory because I heard it from him and I heard it reproduced from other channels as he became known. The man who held the record in Italy for running more than anyone for 24 hours. He ran. He was slender and fit and would show up in a track suit for business meetings when he wasn’t elegantly dressed in a suit or tailored pants and pressed shirt.
He worked. That was not a myth. He was a very, very hard worker. Every new meeting he showed up with endless iterations of things he was working on. Next time you saw him it would have changed numerous times. The engineers and technical people were impressed with his ingenuity, creativity and how quickly he changed things up. He was not formally educated in everything related to LENR but he was a sponge and knew how to make things. He learned fast. If someone mentioned a reference in a meeting, by the next time he’d be using it.
Rossi knew how to learn things. In 2009 he was not fluent in English. He practiced nonstop, read, kept the tv on and repeated what he was watching. My husband, I and others were traveling with Andrea, and he told me the differences in the English language and Italian, how many fewer combinations and words there were—he knew how many. This is how that language is put together, he illustrated. This is how you learn it. It was a system and you could take it apart or put it together.
Rossi was tenacious. You could say obsessed. One day I was doing something with him starting early in the morning, and going all day until my husband flew in to the airport and came in at 11 PM. Andrea spent the night at our house so they could talk and work together the next day. In the course of that day, we had a woman in tow who suggested late morning perhaps he’d like coffee or a bite? No thanks. A couple of hours later, would Andrea like lunch? No. She lost it at 3 PM. “I HAVE to eat! I’m going to faint!” Andrea agreed to stop for a late lunch. Starting at 7 PM when he had settled in front of his computer in my home I would periodically ask him if he wanted some food. I had a cornucopia prepared for his visit, from fruit and nuts to full meal choices. No thank you. No thank you. No thank you. Finally the truth came out. He ate once a day so as to not interrupt his work. Spending more time with him, I found that was true. Pack food or else.
There are some people you spend time with them, even a lot of time, and it doesn’t seem to go deep. Andrea Rossi was a person you could connect with. He was very bright. Wanted to talk, nonstop about work with all the people involved on every level of that front, from technical to engineering to business to science. He was very funny, and fun, curious. One of the times we were with him and his beautiful wife Magdalena we went to a restaurant where there was a rock band. “Don’t let him get near the stage!” Magdalena exclaimed. “He’s a drummer! He’ll drum all night!” Rossi loved American movies and popular fiction. He conveyed an incredible sense of mission about his work and the importance of it, of environmental and energy concerns. And he was deeply interested in philosophy; it was what his degree was in. That, I would come to see, was something he thought about a great deal.
Andrea Rossi had a great gift of making people around him connect with and care about his mission.
I try not to speak of my husband and I as “we,” although we were fortunate in that we could often find ourselves working together, him in science and engineering, me covering it as a writer. But when I look back, I know that in 2009, Martin Fleischmann was still with us. My husband, like many of the people in the cold fusion world, was very close to him. I spent months in Tisbury interviewing Martin.
I think a lot of Martin Fleischmann’s close friends at that time hoped that if a technological breakthrough was coming in cold fusion, that it would come before he died in 2012. I know we did, fiercely. It probably added a bit more impetus to our work. Maybe a lot more.
Did It Work? An Unsolved Mystery
Michael Melich and I probably spent more time with Andrea Rossi than most people in the LENR field, certainly in the U.S. He stayed at our home. We traveled with him. We got to know his inner circle, wife, even his mother-in-law (adorable). We were with him in Rome, Washington, Greece, New York, and many other places. If Andrea Rossi had a working LENR technology, a lot of people were trying to help him get it out there.
As a journalist, the huge frustration was that I was repeatedly in situations related to Rossi were that I could not report on because discretion was requested. I have notes, videos, photos, and the full story on our time with him that I can report in the near future, but now for other reasons, mostly legal constraints, I can’t.
Michael Melich is on record in two public tutorials saying that Rossi’s 2009 demonstrations seemed to show that he was producing about 10 KW for a period of 4-5 hours. Absent independent instrumentation an estimate of the minimum amount of heat produced could be made knowing the flow rate of the cooling water, the rise in temperature of the total volume of water and the duration of the experiment. That number seemed to be 10 times greater than what was being shown on the electrical watt-hour meter. Using the temperature rise across the reactor and the flow rate an estimate of the heat being produced would suggest 10 KW of power was being injected into the cooling water. Subsequent information about the configuration called into question the initial power gain of 10, however, the estimate of 10 KW of excess heat still remained unexplained as coming from an electrical input. The ambiguity of interpretation of this first demonstration by Rossi was to become a continuing feature of subsequent efforts to quantify what his reactors were producing.
The bottom line is that there was not a conclusive Rossi test to report that we witnessed.
By last year’s ICCF19 in Padua, Italy, word was out that the serious money was betting on LENR. Silicon Valley investors had supported Brillouin. Bill Gates was known to have given money although it was on the quiet. Programs restarted in India, Russia, Japan, and China.
For a year, word had been out about Tom Darden, a Raleigh, NC-based businessman whose company Cherokee Investment Partners had invested in Andrea Rossi’s technology. Cherokee had made a business success in Brownfield remediation, cleaning up toxic waste sites. He addressed the ICCF19 conference. It seemed that Andrea Rossi, and other researchers Industrial Heat would support, had found the perfect investor. Darden had a good reputation. He was interested in pollution issues and wanted to develop LENR technology because of that interest. In the course of the next two years, Darden and Industrial Heat would offer support to some of the best researchers in the field. With the exception of Rossi, Brillouin and Dennis Letts, most would keep it quiet.
In the time that IH and Rossi started working together, things moved fast, with Rossi working with Industrial Heat technical people first in Raleigh, NC, then after a year, moving his lab to an industrial building in Miami where he continued by himself. On February 24 until March 20, 2014, Rossi participated in a test of the ECat in Lugano, Switzerland. SRI’s Michael McKubre’s analysis of the report had mixed reviews. Soon after, McKubre was invited to Norway to meet with people involved in the test, an experience he also wrote about.
In January 2016, Rossi biographer and new energy technology journalist Mats Lewan announced a June New Energy World Symposium in Stockholm, “provided the E-Cat test ‘Clearly Positive.’” The star speaker would be Andrea Rossi. Others would be Lewan, LENR-CANR’s Jed Rothwell, Nobel Laureate and long time cold fusion supporter Brian Josephson, Jean-Francois Geneste, VP of Airbus Group, Harry Frank from Malardalen University in Sweden, and Bob Greenyer from MFMP.
Rossi had announced he was doing a one year test of his 1 MW reactor, after which he would receive the rest of the money his contract with IH stipulated, $89 million. What happened exactly in that time frame remains to be seen, but as the test date completion loomed, the story started getting confusing. Lewan, a journalist with a hitherto good reputation for careful work, was under pressure with his proposed June symposium and the hoped for one year test results and report release date starting to waver. In early February Rossi had announced the test results would be pushed back a month. Suddenly in the third week of February, Rossi announced that the test was concluded and it was a success. But the report was not being released, a situation that continued as days stretched into weeks. Agitation started on the bulletin boards and blogs. Mats Lewan on February 18 reported that the test had been a success. If it was a success, researchers started pressuring in online posts, where was the report? There was criticism of Industrial Heat for holding up the release of the report. Shortly thereafter, an IH insider posted on a bulletin board that they were not the ones holding up its release.
On April 5, Andrea Rossi announced that he was suing Industrial Heat for $89 million. He released the news, papers and supporting documents online. The claims in his lawsuit included theft of intellectual property, patent infringement, and fraud.
An analysis of the case from Patent Lawyer David French is here.
Just as emotion was not new to the cold fusion field, legal battles were not new to the field. There are ongoing legal battles that date to the 1990s. But this was a different scale. The situation of an $89 million dollar lawsuit between the field’s highest profile, highest paid inventor and his environmentally-inclined investors wasn’t akin to the adage of having an elephant in the room. It was like having an elephant with projectile diarrhea who had snorted a kilo of cocaine after mating with Donald Trump in the room. This was a worst case scenario, a four star sriracha-saturated shit storm that could distinctly prove unhelpful to the LENR world’s public profile at the time of its greatest collective acceleration.
For myself, the perpetual struggle for objective reporting was competing with shock. I’d hoped for the success of Rossi’s technology for so long and been so glad that someone like Darden had come along to support it.
I had spoken to Dennis Letts, one researcher IH was supporting who had been public about it, to ask about what he thought of Industrial Heat. He responded, “I am proud of my affiliation with IH and its people. In my view, Industrial Heat is a rare combination of talent, intelligence, and integrity. They are the finest people I have worked with since my ‘deal-making’ career began in 1972. The public charges made against Industrial Heat and its management are totally inconsistent with my personal experience over the past 18 months. Profits are important to IH but never at the expense of integrity.”
I knew a good number of the other researchers IH worked with and each found them honest, straightforward and supportive on every level to deal with. Mike and I had been down to North Carolina to their headquarters and spent time with them. We emerged feeling confident about the kind of people they were. Could I be wrong about that impression? I asked myself repeatedly. And then I’d go through the checklist of the things Darden had talked about in our interview, of his work and reputation over many years, of his son working with Brad Pitt building houses for Hurricane Katrina survivors. Would he be the kind of person to cheat, steal from and defraud Rossi? It was possible. Anything was possible. It just didn’t seem likely.
The history of cold fusion in the first year particularly showed that the affects of people under terrible pressure were ubiquitous. When the uproar starts that someone is faking things or someone screwed up, defenses rise. Accusations fly. Humanity goes out the window. So do cool heads that might work things out together.
I didn't know what was going on with Andrea Rossi. The word “fraud” would be leveled at him. But when Michael Melich and other competent people examined it, there was a sufficiently large amount of heat that was unexplained that was worth further investigation on the first Rossi reactor they saw. It was essential to follow up, and to not dismiss Rossi’s invention.
LENR is hard. Hard to make it happen all the time. Who knew what happened?
Brian Scanlan was a software entrepreneur and LENR supporter who had figured into early Rossi chapters that I maintained the requested discretion on...until he posted about them on a LENR bulletin board, which he gave me permission here to reproduce (below). I still didn’t…and wouldn’t...know what to think of Andrea Rossi until I saw the evidence on both sides of the case. Scanlan wrote on the forum:
I am not sure how many of us in this group have met either Rossi, or IH’s Tom Darden. I’ve met both and came away with very distinct impressions.
In June 2011 I met Rossi in Miami along with his partners from Leonardo. Mike Melich and Marianne Macy were also present. Prior to the meeting I had constructed a consortium committed to funding $15mil provided we could establish mutually agreed-upon test conditions. We didn’t get far. The meeting lasted about two hours but from the beginning was fraught with conflict. I mentioned that Ed Storms would design and run the calorimetry of our proposed test, which in hindsight I realize ended the negotiations. A real scientist and experimentalist such as Ed was too risky for Rossi. Soon after Rossi threw a tantrum, set a series of absurd conditions and left the room, followed by a train of his partners hoping to sooth the genius’ hurt feelings. Although I wasn’t amused at the time, I should have been. Rossi is a character sprung from Hollywood central casting.
I met with Tom Darden only once, in February 2014 in NYC for several hours. Similar to others on CMNS, over the years I have dealt with a kaleidoscope of personalities in business. After some painful lessons along the way I’ve gotten to be a decent judge of character. I’d judge Tom Darden a straightshooter. Tom described his motives as “saving the planet.” CO2 emissions and related pollution were a deep concern to him. “We have to do something,” he said. In that context, he must have approached Rossi with an open mind, although as a businessman he wasn’t going to write a check without conditions. Tom Darden seems a “typical” well-meaning wealthy person trying to use his resources to solve one of our planet's biggest problems.
As we watch this circus, we should imagine ourselves in Tom Darden’s shoes. Suppose the agreed-upon test required a 6.0 COP, but delivered something less than that. Anything greater than 1.0 would still be exciting from a scientific point of view, as long as it was real. A real 1.5 COP would allow the launch of a major research effort. A competent businessman such as Darden with strong entrepreneurial bona fides could easily raise $100 mil or more with proven excess heat. He and his partners have a personal net worth far in excess of this number, so they needn't go to the outside. Silicon Valley routinely funds speculative ventures with 100s of $ millions.
It’s clear to me the IH tests failed entirely. Rossi had to be present with the device at all times, a very bad sign. When the e-Cat failed he conjured up the Hot-Cat, a Very Very bad sign. If the e-Cat produced even a small excess energy, that was enough to prove LENR to the world and to gain funding. Yet, the e-Cat effort was abandoned in favor of high-temperature work. The calorimetry design at the Hot-Cat’s high temperatures was very challenging and certainly caused extensive delays. It’s the perfect setting for bad intentions. Delay and obfuscation rule.
As was noted in this group, Rossi sued before the money from IH was due. Why the rush? Rossi wanted to strike first to paint himself as a victim before IH sues him for fraud.
There’s a book that's worth reading: The Sociopath Next Door, by Martha Stout. Or take a look at http://www.wikihow.com/Spot-a-Sociopath. Most of us in this group have trouble with the basic question, Why would Rossi try to pull such a brazen fraud? How did he expect to get away with it? Answer—Some people crave control. For some, control is much more important than money. And Rossi has succeeded. He’s hijacked the LENR agenda, which has derailed countless sincere and promising research efforts.
Folks, it’s time to move on.
One important fact was that the payment to Rossi was NOT from Woodford Investment Management in the UK, or any other investors IH had raised money from. Tom Darden paid Rossi $11.5 million. All money before Woodford are “professional investors,” as defined by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Rossi was paid his license fee before Woodford invested. Granted, if Rossi had what he said it was, it was worth it; the invention would be worth billions. But…with the jury still out on Rossi’s tests, when that money changed hands, never in the history of cold fusion had there been a payment to a single individual near such an amount. When I asked what he’d witnessed of Rossi’s technology to make him decide to do that, Darden had replied it was transmutation data. Not excess heat. He took a leap, and it was with his own money.
Forty-eight hours after filing his lawsuit, Rossi posted on his own site an insinuation about Brillouin Energy changing their experimental methodology to copy his. This was not in Rossi’s complaint, but it was worrisome. A patent may cover the use of a recipe. But it did not mean Andrea Rossi, or anyone, had a monopoly on ingredients. What was next?
LENR Community Reacts
Reaction to the lawsuit exploded on the bulletin boards and blogosphere, from the stand-with-Rossi exhortations of one contingent to those who urged to wait for all the facts to come out, to those who felt the only facts they were waiting for hadn’t come out, the report of the ERV test.
Jed Rothwell, who runs the LENR-CANR online library, sent me a video when I said I noticed some of the initial reporting on the case was saying things by purporting NOT to say things.
Reporter Mats Lewan was illustrating praeteritio in his March 18 post. He reported that another reporter had written about Industrial Heat’s public relations firm APCO, who served major corporations and suggested perhaps these nefarious corporations had “given IH an offer they couldn’t refuse.” Lewan exhorted (my emphasis):
“I need to underline that you should be careful with this kind of conspiracy theories. However, it’s interesting to note that there might be significant interests wanting to delay the introduction of commercially viable LENR based energy.”
“IH might have been pressed by investors’ expectations, while not being sure of having all the technology details. IH can even have been approached by more powerful entities, seeing the E-Cat as a threat, or wanting to secure the technology for the US, without depending on Rossi.
We don’t know this. And to settle the case might take years, unfortunately. In any case—the public statement from IH a few weeks ago now comes into another perspective, looking more like damage limitation, with support of the well-known PR agency APCO Worldwide."
Andrea Rossi, too, was not saying anything, as evidenced by his April 7 posting on his Journal of Nuclear Physics site [NOTE: emphasis added.]:
“I have to comment the press release of IH, being a press release and not a forensic act.
They made the Lugano reactor (they also signed it) they made many replications of which we have due record and witnesses, they made multiple patent applications (without my authorization) with their chief engineer as the co-inventor (he invented nothing) with detailed description of the replications, they made replications with the attendance of Woodford, after which they got 50 or 60 millions of dollars from Woodfords’ investors, they made replications with the attendance of Chinese top level officers, after which they started thanks to the E-Cat they made an R&D activity in China in a 200 millions concern, they made replications with an E-Cat completely made by them under my direction the very day in which the 1 MW plant has been delivered in Raleigh, they made replications that we have recorded. After the replication they made with the attendance of Woodford in 2013 Mr Tom Darden said publicly: ‘this replication has been stellar’ (witnesses available). But this is not the place to discuss thisWe have prepared 18 volumes to explain exactly and in detail the activity of our “Licensee” and his acquaintances from 2013 to now. Until they had to collect money thanks to the E-Cat, they made replications and have been happy with the E-Cat; when it turned to have to pay, they discovered that they never made replications, that the ERV that they had chosen with us was not good, that the test on the 1 MW plant, thanks to which they collected enormous amounts of money from the investors and where I put at risk my health working 16-18 hours per day was not a good test ( but for all the year of the test they NEVER said a single word of complaint, even if they had constantly their men in the plant, etc etc. But the worse has still to come out. The worse is in the 18 volumes we will present in due time, in due place. (NOTE: Emphasis added): A blog is not the right place to discuss a litigation. This is only a quick answer to the press release made by IH.
A week later, Mats Lewan, after a smoking-gun column that fingered Industrial Heat as the guilty party, wrote that he’d been accused of biased reporting. He supplied another scenario with the opposite perspective. A sincere effort to do balanced reporting.
On April 15, Lewan announced the cancellation of his New Energy World Symposium.
Andrea Rossi posted some of his personal hardship in the week that followed the filing of his lawsuit. He spoke of sleeping in the factory building he’d worked for a year. “Why would he sleep in the work space, not a hotel, for a year?” demanded Rossi supporter Peter Gluck on his site.
“For $89 million?” was one response. Others raised questions about beside protecting what was in the reactor, what other secrets might be concealed.
To try to garner sympathy on the idea of working hard when the reward was such a payday was a major miscalculation in this crowd. Not necessarily about the money. It was about sacrifice and context. Most of the original people who had worked in cold fusion had been through too much, seen too much. The science was interdisciplinary. The cumulative mass of each other’s work and discovery and progress was just too closely related. It was why the early publication of cold fusion papers—by George Miley in Fusion Technology, and new energy advocate Harold Fox in his early newsletter Fusion Facts which by 1996 had evolved into the Journal of New Energy, LENR-CANR library, the JSCMNS, and the proceedings of the ICCFs—were such essential, necessities. It was unlikely to progress without studying where the predecessors had been before.
And there were the personal sacrifices of the peers in a small community. The crushing losses of: Giuliano Preparata, prominent particle physics theorist, whose work on superradiance offered an alternative theoretical explanation for the Fleischmann-Pons Heat Effect as well as being a tenacious critic of the “know nothings” from primarily the physics community who did not look at the experimental evidence. He died in his 40s. Or Russian physicist Andrei Lipson, son of modern Russia, who died in 2009 at age 52. Lipson was a graduate student of B.V. Derjaguin, who Lipson would say, “came to cold fusion before cold fusion existed” with his work on fracto-fusion, neutron emission during the fracture of deuterated solids. An expert of nuclear emissions during cold fusion effects, Lipson had accepted a position at the University of Missouri when his sudden death in Russia occurred. Widely considered to be one of the best scientists in the field, he had traveled all around the world, stitching together research effort after research effort. He was about to settle in one place that would do great work, finally together with his beloved wife and daughter. It was a major loss of someone with the genius and capacity to supply large pieces of the puzzle. He never doubted that the scattering model of conventional particle physics could be used to explain his observation of 2 MeV protons and much higher energy neutrons shown repeatedly in his experiments with Roussetski and Chernov, who continue to publish research. Among Lipson’s still active research colleagues in LENR is Sergei Tcvetkov whose interest in deuterium loaded titanium is continuing in a German private laboratory.
There were more who left too young, too soon. Russian Physicist Yan Kucherov, who as a materials scientist at LUCH with his team matured a set of experiments with Irina Savvatimova and Alexander Karabut. Kucherov moved to the U.S. to work at ENECO and eventually the Naval Research Laboratory with Graham Hubler. There was many-body theorist, writer and activist Scott Chubb whose collaborations with his uncle Talbot Chubb produced a literature suggesting that the deuterons and protons could be found in highly loaded metals in “ion band states,” mathematically the same as used to describe semiconductor behavior. Talbot Chubb found Ivan Chernov’s experiments on the response of hydrogen loaded metals to electron beam or x-ray stimulation highly supportive of the ion-band ideas. SRI’s Mike McKubre has glass embedded in his side from a lab explosion, but it killed collaborator Andrew Riley.
Yes. Sleeping in one’s workspace for months on end was difficult. But in cold fusion, many people had done much more for much less. Tadahiko Mizuno, for example, a nuclear experimentalist and pioneer in the observation of transmutation, spent a couple of years conducting experiments under nearly impossible conditions in a cold, damp underground laboratory. Or Melvin Miles, an electrochemist at the Navy’s China Lake laboratory who made the first reliable measurement of He in the presence of excess heat production, was subjected to a sequence of administrative actions that reduced him to taking inventory of storeroom supplies. One of the most famous people to suffer the ignominy assigned to cold fusion researchers was Julian Schwinger, who shared the Nobel Prize with Tomonaga and Feynmann for the development of Quantum Electrodynamics. His lectures, books and papers on quantum field theory are legendary. Schwinger resigned his membership in the American Physical Society. In a speech prepared for delivery at ICCF4 and read by Gene Mallove in 1994 he described how his Greens Function Analysis approach, used to win him the Nobel Prize, when applied to the problem of nuclear processes in a solid might help solve why neutrons and other nuclear signatures might be absent in the PdD system.
People collaborated. Efforts like MFMP, whose experimental work was streamed online. In Colorado, Coolescence led by engineer, entrenpreneur and philanthropist Matt McConnell with Rick Cantwell and team have taken seemingly successful experiments from a body of research in cold fusion and set out to replicate them. Replication has become the recognized foundation to create effective technology to support product engineering and as always happens with very complicated physical systems, will eventually support the science that will expand existing physical theories and models to cover the observed “cold fusion” results.
Rossi was a lone gun in a field where the science itself was interdisciplinary. The more crossover of work and information shared, the more things had a chance to grow. There were still NDAs and competition. No one would say the researchers were a brotherhood holding hands and singing “kumbaya.” No one who had ever met three Italian scientists from different institutions, anyway. But the nature of this field was such that the people working in it needed to know about each other’s work, and that fostered connection.
They went to conferences together. There were online forums like Vortex, CMNS Google Group, and LENR-Forum. There were organizations such as the ISCMNS started by Bill Collis, with an excellent journal edited by Jean-Paul Biberian. The LENR-CANR library started by Ed Storms and Jed Rothwell is the repository of papers in the field. Even “outsiders” provided useful services such as the continuous cataloging by Dieter Britz and the interaction with seemingly related studies on d-d scattering in metals by groups such as Huke, Czerski, Heide.
The cold fusion community may be like herding cats, but it is a community.
LENR Community…And Work Continues
Would cold fusion survive the Rossi lawsuit? I solicited responses from as many people as I could reach to ask for an update on their work. (And am still collecting reports of work, so send them on.)
Answers came in like a tidal wave. There are people working all over the world, now with major support, although more support is needed. This is a sampling, a heartening sampling, to show the variety and different areas of the work going on. More will be in evidence in China and Japan this fall at ICCF20. A commercial breakthrough of technology will happen, sooner rather than later. Meanwhile, the science progresses steadily. Whatever happens in the Rossi / Industrial Heat lawsuit, the best resolution is ongoing work.
You can’t turn back the tide.
Current LENR Work
Dennis Letts and Dennis Cravens, longtime LENR researchers working in laser triggering effects, have collaborated with one of the original cold fusion theorists and researchers, MIT’s Peter Hagelstein.
Dennis Letts reports:
I have been designing and testing various types of LENR reactors and materials since the early 90s. These days I am focused primarily on ways to effectively load a host metal with either deuterium or hydrogen. The work continues to progress with the support of Industrial Heat and I am pleased with its direction.
Dennis Cravens writes:
Dual laser experiments have shown that when two linear polarized lasers are selected so that 1) their beat frequencies are in the correct phonon regions, 2) impinge on a nonlinear absorber to allow mixing, 3) oriented so that their E fields have non zero dot product, 4) have a non-zero component of their Poynting vector into the surface and along an external magnetic field that heat releasing events can be triggered.
The areas presently of the most concern to me are 1) the functional form of the excess heat production in regards to temperature, 2) the role of alloying or otherwise producing materials to effect ultimate energy densities, and 3) the role of non-equilibrium stresses, such as electromigration, in initiation and control of the heat production.
I am perusing both gas loaded materials at moderate temperatures and electrochemical systems at boil temperatures.
I feel that the most important thing now is not to be bogged down in proving existence of the effect but in the study of materials used to obtain it.
Peter Hagelstein reports:
We have experiments where we are vibrating pieces of metal hoping to see evidence for up conversion, ideally hoping to see some collimated x-ray emission. We continue to be interested in the Kornilova water jet experiment. I am hoping to go to Russia this summer and spend time with Kornilova and the waterjet and augment my understanding of what's going on there. We can work on models; the models we been interested in is an applied physics model for the phase diagram of palladium hydride, which is done, written up and submitted. Hopefully we will get PD Deuteride and a similar model done for it. Recently I’ve been working to document the theoretical models I have developed for Cold Fusion. It involves two pieces, one has to do with the formalism for how you couple nuclei to a lattice. The other has to do with the up conversion down conversion. So during the past month I've been trying to write a discussion of the derivation of the first part of the problem: how do you make a useful model for nuclei as composite quantum particles and put it in the lattice. Can you connect that with the literature in a way such that you are sure that you are doing it right and you can connect with other people’s experience. I’ve had some luck doing that and am working on the paper. When I give presentations I say there are two new things we have to do—one is we have to do the model of the nuclei coupled with a lattice the other is we have to do up conversion down conversion. At this point I can say that including models for nuclei in the lattice is basically a fairly standard calculation, there is nothing particularly new other than doing it! That is a more powerful and fundamental kind of statement and basically cuts in half the remaining theoretical problem. You can reduce the problem to one that's been previously solved and that is a significant accomplishment.
Hopefully in the coming months I’ll do the same thing for the up conversion down conversion.
Theorist Norman Cook supplied:
I am interested solely in transmutation data (not heat, or technology or saving the planet), because isotopic changes are inherently nuclear and - almost entirely - inexplicable in terms of conventional nuclear theorizing. So, I remain obstinately optimistic about the future prospects of LENR. But the need for hard data is suddenly more obvious to us all. "Talk is cheap" —and I am as guilty as anyone in that regard!
But think it needs to be said that we can't return to the (equally insane) view that nuclear theory (ca. 1960) already gave us all the answers. It ain't true! The fission of Uranium (1938!) is not understood at a fundamental level (Chapter 8 in my book, but not discussed in the textbooks); and the same goes for the nuclear force (Chapter 7), the nuclear texture (Chapters 5 and 6) and other nuclear structure questions that were essentially abandoned in the 1960s with the ascendancy of (extremely high-energy) quark theorizing (with all its adjustable "free parameters"). Yeah, don't get me started.
I still believe that the LENR community is where interesting things are happening in nuclear physics, but we need to walk a fine line between the hyperconservatism of the know-it-all 1960s theorists and the baloney of the dreamers.
David Nagel, Research Professor at George Washington University, is a longstanding leader in the LENR community. He and Steve Katinsky created the LENRIA industrial association. Nagel is one of the most published researchers in LENR.
David Kidwell, Analytical Chemist at Naval Research Laboratory, has brought critical scrutiny to trace element analysis of LENR experiments. He is discoverer of an isotope effect that is still being researched in PdD and PdH.
Yasuhiro Iwamura recently started research activity at Tohoku University with Jiro Kasagi. His long standing research on sandwiches of Pd and Mg permeated with D are continuing in a new laboratory. He and Kasagi are the Chairmen of the forthcoming ICCF20.
Yuri Bazhutov, of Moscow Technical University MADI, has continued as a primary organizer of cold fusion and ball lightning conferences in Russia as well as experimenting to identify evidence for his ERZION theory.
Alla Kornilova, of Lomonosov Moscow State University, and Vladimir Vysotskii, of Kiev Shevchenko University (Ukraine), continue their collaborations across a wide range of experiments on unusual radiation signatures in waterjet experiments as well as their investigations of the potential for processing radioactive materials with bacteria.
Kiva Labs is an ongoing collaboration between Ed Storms, an original LANL researcher, and Brian Scanlan, a software entrepreneur who became interested in cold fusion and found a mentor in Storms. “To be a genius, you can also have the qualities of patience, caring and desire that the student succeed,” Scanlan says. Most of their work was in gas loading but they pursued experiments in glow discharge and replicated some of Storms’ older F-P electrolytic experiments. “Having two labs gave us the challenge of checking each other. It is not in Ed’s DNA to be ambiguous and unclear in our work,” says Scanlan. “Once you worry about your partner, everything becomes coded in those terms.” They are doing gas loading in Pd and Ni based systems, ongoing work.
George Miley, Emeritus Nuclear Engineering at University of Illinois, was a crucial figure in the initial stages of cold fusion research in his role as the Editor of Fusion Technology, where much early, peer-reviewed work was published. In recent years he has investigated material clusters that hold technology promise for heat production.
Pam Mosier-Boss, Larry Forsley, Stan Szpak and Frank Gordon are long associated with using co-deposition as the foundation of experiments in the production of heat and nuclear signatures. Pam and Larry continue with their experimental work
Nicolas Chauvin, who started the company LENR Cars, reported his company had applied for the regular patent in March 2013 and their filing is now published, however there is still a way to go before they can have the patent granted. He says, “Our patent is currently being examined by the USPTO. On the R&D side, we are developing a more advanced reactor now that we expect to start testing in about a month.”
Francesco Piantelli, of Sienna University (Italy) and nicHenergy, observed heat in 1989 in a biological experiment involving hydrogen and nickel. From this he and his collaborators developed a body of published work on the NiH system and several patents. Today the work is carried on at his company nicHenergy. The photographs at his website show a well-organized and equipped laboratory.
Sveinn Olafsson (University of Iceland) and Leif Holmlid (University of Gothenburg, Sweden) recently presented a solid theoretical explanation on how LENR can work based on Rydberg state of hydrogen/deuterium.
Nicolas Chauvin and the MFMP states that, “Based on our experiments, it is still clear for us if the LENR reactions are based on Rydberg state hydrogen fusion or if they are based on electron capture combined with neutron capture (Widom-Larsen). Both theory can explain the results we are observing in the lab.
Graham Hubler, Director SKINR at the University of Missouri, reports:
Our emphasis at the moment is learning how to reproducibly load to D/Pd fractions >0.95 (done), to perform more in situ fundamental measurements to learn the local atomic electromagnetic, structural (including point defects), and D site specific environment In heat producing systems. Techniques we apply include perturbed angular correlations (PAC, initial run done at CERN), Mossbauer, neutron scattering, intense ion beam impingement in vacuum (1023 ions/cm2/s) looking for RF and/or particle emission, and Parkhomov-like experiments (5 successful runs up to 1300C, no heat as yet). These experiments are being set up or in progress through collaborations world wide. We believe such measurements will provide crucial information required in order to establish a mechanism for the Fleischmann-Pons Effect.
Anthony Lagatta, founder of TSEM and Sponsor and Chairman of ICCF19 (2015) in Padua, Italy, enunciated a developmental style in his opening remarks that said computation and great design lead to understanding and great products. He has chosen LENR as a focus and in a collaboration with other scientists in Italy focused on development of understanding of how to trigger cold fusion reactions. His company has been selling all-up, instrumented, high precision calorimeters suitable for cold fusion experiments.
Brillouin Energy Corp. is developing low energy nuclear reaction technology based on the Controlled Electron Capture Reaction (CECR) Hypothesis invented by its Founder and CTO, Robert Godes. Brillouin has “demonstrated the potential of stable heat production on a controlled test basis with its clean energy technology. It is now on the path to advancing into a scalable commercial technology platform that will be integrated into products for home heating, commercial heating, power production, desalination and other large market possibilities.” They report, “ The stable heat production that the Company’s experienced team has demonstrated can only be achieved with control of the underlying physics, which is what the technology continues to point to. Brillouin Energy Corp. expects to have a supportable technology for commercial application upon completion of its engineering and manufacturing platform development currently in process.” Godes adds they are “really excited” about current work.
Mahadeva Srinivasan, retired from the Bhabha Atomic Research Center in India, reports that a third meeting of LENR-India Forum at the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Bangalore took place on March 19. He wrote: “Twelve to 14 groups have pledged to work in the field. After a gap of 20 years I am happy that India is back in the LENR map of the world. Our focus will be to carry out basic studies and publish papers. The idea is to help the field be accepted by the mainstream community.” April 21 will find Srinivasan giving a talk at the North Carolina State University Nuclear Engineering Department in Raleigh.
Fran Tanzella of SRI reports:
The LENR effort at SRI is still adjusting to the post-Mike McKubre era. We are hoping to expand into new areas and clients but this has not happened yet. I’m working on getting our nuclear measurement capability up to date and hoping to bring these instruments to bear on new experiment, yet to be designed. We are also considering making these measurements on other researcher’s cells and experiments.
Jean-Paul Biberian, retired from the University of Marseille (France), notes:
At the moment I have started a replication of the ICARUS 9 experiment that Stan Pons showed at ICCF 6 in Hokkaido in 1996. It is a constantly boiling experiment that showed a lot of excess heat. I contacted Stan Pons and he gave me all the drawings and the contact information for the people who built the cells 20 years ago. This is a very interesting calorimeter, because, it can operate at low, medium and high power. I am currently starting the first experiment with palladium cathode and D2O. It is an experiment that can take up to several months.
Regarding theories, I think that the one of Frederic Henry-Couannier using general relativity is very innovative and interesting. It has the potential of explaining both cold fusion, but also ball lightning both macro and micro sizes. I know that this theory is not final yet, but it is an interesting new vision of the field.
Ed Storms, of Kiva Labs and retired from Los Alamos National Laboratory, writes:
If someone wants to advance the field and solve the reproducibility problem, they need to follow a few rules. These rules are not being followed. Instead, we are bombarded by a random collection of ideas and assumptions, guided mainly by Rossi these days. I suggest it is time for people to step back and take a fresh look at what is actually known and what it means. To start the process, I have written a rather long paper describing the rules and assumptions required to explain LENR. This will be made available shortly. Hopefully, by then the Rossi distraction will have run it's course and a more rational approach can be considered.
I'm in the progress of expanding my theory and using it to create activated Pd. I have been successful on three occasions from which some significant new understanding has resulted. The resulting paper is in review at Current Science. After studying the effect for 27 years and reading most of the papers, I believe a successful theory must acknowledge certain requirements. I list these requirements and apply them to my theory. No other theory is consistent with these requirements. That statement does not make me friends, but that is not my goal. I’m trying to set the research on an effective path, which the present theories have not done.
Bill Collis, founder of the ISCMNS, notes: “Last month in Avignon I presented a paper entitled “Minimal Exotic Neutral Particle Models,” in which I derive a reaction scheme from basic requirements of nuclear physics. It is found that four elements can sustain chain reactions and remarkably none of them predict penetrating radiation. All four elements have been present in excess heat producing experiments.”
Tom Claytor, retired from Los Alamos National Laboratory, reports:
We are working on firming up the excess heat measurements from a “Stringham” cell type configuration. This involves the high intensity ultrasonic irradiation of various metals in D2O and H2O in a sensitive Seebeck envelope calorimeter. Post run, the foils are checked for evidence of damage due to cavitation and any residual radioactivity. A system for measuring He4 in D2 is also under construction and so far has shown a detection sensitivity of about 0.5 ppm He4 in D2.
Xhing Zhong Li, Emeritus Professor at Tsinghua University (China), writes:
My current theoretical work is for the existence of p+Li6 low energy resonance. It is important to pay attention to the Lipinski patent, which demonstrated the existence of both p+Li6 and p+Li7 low energy resonances after 7 year experimental work.. Lipinski's work is independent of Rossi and IH debate, and based on nuclear detection only without any calorimetric calculation. Sidney Kimmel Institute for Nuclear Renaissance should particularly work on this patent. Microsoft donated $40 million in 2015 for the Global Innovation Exchange Institute (GIX), which is a Joint Institute of Tsinghua University and the University of Washington.
Thomas Passell, of D2Fusion, Inc. and retired from the Electric Power Research Institute, comments:
I am currently pursuing research using glow discharges in deuterium gas with various elements and alloys such as titanium, vanadium, cobalt, zirconium, scandium and and separated isotope boron of mass 10. My paper in the Journal of CMNS volume 15 gives the evidence backing this hypothesis. Although Li-6 and 7 are troublesome to work with, when I can get lithium-containing alloys, they should show depletion of Li-6 relative to Li-7 since only lithium 6 has a positive Q for deuteron stripping.
Akito Takahashi, Emeritus Professor at Osaka University and affiliated with Technova (Japan), notes: “I am seeing steady progress in nano-metal H-gas AHE works by Japanese joint team. IP problems block me to disclose.”
Rick Cantwell, of Coolescence, reports:
We continue to make good progress on understanding the mechanisms controlling the loading and flux of H/D into Pd - both from experimental work as well as by modeling efforts. We are applying the fruits of our loading work to run well loaded cathodes in calorimeters looking for excess heat - since Padua we have run in over one hundred Pd and Pd alloy cathodes in calorimeters - without seeing any excess heat. We expect to provide an update at ICCF-20.
Olga Dmitriyeva of Coolescence writes:
On the theory side we search for the clear explanation on why our palladium material behaves the way it does, why and how some cathodes are different from the others. Years of experimental work show that even the initial step results—hydrogen loading in palladium—are quite unpredictable. Some of the cathodes are loading well and to the high level, and some - not. This is truly a material science problem, which needs to be addressed before we get to the next step - LENR. The computational chemistry methods are extremely useful in scanning different configurations and material surface states. It helps to explain and predict the outcome of the experimental runs, whenever the chemistry is changing.
Francesco Celani, senior researcher at the National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN) in Frascati, Italy, and Vice-President of the ISCMNS, writes:
Today I was able to get excess heat again with COP near 2, then reactor failed due to a bad sealing that started to melt. Reactor was much bigger than previous time thus produced energy was in range of .1 kW. This time I was able to trigger excess heat…See the Celani et al. paper (“Observation of macroscopic current and thermal anomalies, at high temperature, by hetero-structures on thin and long Constantan wires under H2 gas”) from ICCF19 for details on recent experiments.
Roger Stringham of First Gate Energies writes:
RF interference that periodically plagued acoustic experiments is now used to tune and stimulate a piezo disk antenna that produces cavitation bubbles. The new development over the last 2 years measures the TC data in the 5 seconds of the off mode of a 35 second duty cycle. This was very successfully demonstrated in a 2 second slow-motion video last year. The emphasis is the search for ash, and the measurement for anomalous heat, with an internal resistance calibration heater in the reactor.
Melvin Miles, retired professor at the University of LaVerne (California) and formerly with the China Lake Naval Research Laboratory, reports:
I am presently working on a proposal with Dave Nagel to reproduce the F-P palladium cube meltdown result with video recordings to capture any melt down. If successful, this could convince many scientist about large excess heat effects in the Pd/D system. In June, I will be working at Coolescence in Colorado to help in the observation of excess heat using palladium materials that previously worked in my experiments.
I am also working on a paper that I hope will greatly help in understanding the genius of the F-P Dewar calorimetry and promote its use for reactions other than just cold fusion. My lofty goal would be a publication in Nature or the Journal of Physical Chemistry.
I also hope in the next year to complete a book presenting my Fleischmann letters.