Infinite Energy Magazine
Summary of the Second International Conference on Future Energy
The latest Conference on Future Energy (COFE-II) was held from September 22-24, 2006 at the Sheraton College Park Hotel in Washington, D.C. The event was hosted by the Integrity Research Institute (IRI) with co-hosts New Energy Movement (www.integrityresearchinstitute.org; www.newenergymovement.org). Tom Valone, CEO of IRI, acted as emcee and overall organizer and he and his team of volunteers are to be complimented for delivering an excellent program with leading energy and healing experts who were both knowledgeable and engaging speakers who kept their audience interested in the sometimes information-dense topics. Topics included energy healing, electric vehicles, hydrogen technologies, solar, biomass, fusion, tidal hydro, gravitics, and more. The 100+ attendees included a wide range of people, from college age students to more senior folks who are looking to use their experience and talents to help bring future energy technology into near-term commercial reality. Several exhibitors were present to explain and demonstrate their healing devices, health supplements, magnetic motor models, solar modules, and organizations. All of the presentations will be available on DVD and can be ordered from the IRI website.
Friday, September 22:
The program began in the evening and was highlighted by a showing of the documentary movie “Who Killed the Electric Car?” to about 230 attendees. It was followed by a reception and Q&A session with activist Chelsea Sexton, who also starred in the movie, taking questions. Tom Valone notes, “. . .she amazed the audience by answering every electric car question they could throw at her, with unparalleled technical detail.” This part of the program was open to the public for a nominal charge and the local DC chapter of EVA helped arrange for Chelsea to be present.
Saturday, September 23:
“Post-Petroleum Energetics Including Seawater Agriculture” was given by the first speaker of the Saturday morning session, Dennis M. Bushnell, Chief Scientist at NASA Langley Research Center. During his 43-year career at NASA, Bushnell has contributed to a wide range of projects and technologies meriting numerous awards and citations. He is widely published and reviews articles for many journals.
Bushnell began his talk by tracing the economic and technologic development of humans, from hunter-gatherers to present day, where the power of IT, Bio, and nano-technology may lead to a near complete virtual reality of human design after 2030. Technology matters for both benefit and for ill. As our reliance on petroleum for energy declines in the face of growing population, a series of security and basic survival concerns arise. He focused in on the food and biomass needs of the expanding population. These needs in turn place demands on arable land and fresh water resources that are daunting from a traditional technology and usage perspective. This is where Bushnell launches into his main theme of biomass for food, energy, and materials from the cultivation of salt tolerant plants or halophytes. There are about 10,000 known species of halophytes. The amazing thing is that these plants can grow in seawater and brackish water and they do not accumulate salt in their tissues, which means they can be consumed by humans and livestock without exceeding healthy sodium inputs. The ability to irrigate with seawater or brines, especially in deserts and arid coastal areas, greatly expands the potential food and biomass production such that significant replacement of fossil fuels becomes reasonable. He projected that genetic engineering could be used to confer salt tolerance to traditional fresh water food crops and further to increase the productivity of current halophytes. This is very exciting technology with a real prospect to help meet humanity’s future food, bio materials, and energy needs.
Bushnell is to be commended for his thorough coverage of the complex post-petroleum energy road map and for highlighting the promise of salt water agriculture. For example, this writer is aware of a demonstration project in Eritrea where seawater from the nearby Red Sea is used to water halophyte crops and to farm fish and shrimp synergistically, leading to a significant improvement in the living standards of the locals. This project is lead by entrepreneur John Sperling and Atmospheric Physicist Dr. Carl N. Hodges.
“Advances in Dense Plasma Focus (DPF) for Fusion Power & Space Propulsion” was presented by Dr. George Miley. He is a professor in both the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and the Nuclear, Plasma and the Radiological Engineering Department at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Chicago. He also serves as Director of the Fusion Studies Laboratory. Miley is internationally known for his advanced energy work, has extensive publications, has received numerous awards for his efforts, and is a fellow of several major professional societies.
Miley reviewed briefly the history of chemical propellant rocket history and the limitations that are inherent in this technology. The relatively low velocities it can produce and large mass of fuel needed limits both the distance into space that can be reached in a reasonable time and the payload that can be carried. Work has been ongoing since the early 1950s to develop a way to use nuclear energy fission or fusion to drive spacecraft. The fission-based systems had some promise, but the need for shielding and materials that could stand up to the high temperatures and radiation were lacking. Fusion-based ideas were limited by similar difficulties due to the high neutron flux with D-D or D-T fusion and by the fact that no sustained fusion reactor has ever been successfully built and tested. Fusion systems operate in plasma mode at very high equivalent temperatures, leading to much higher specific impulse than the fission-based systems that can only heat a gas like hydrogen to high thermal temperatures.
Miley’s work utilizes the plasma fusion of a proton and a boron-11 atom, which yields three helium-4 nuclei at very high energy that can then be expelled through a thrust nozzle. The conditions needed to promote this aneutronic fusion reaction are more extreme than for D-D or D-T fusion and this is where the DPF approach is valuable. The design uses a high energy discharge between two coaxial electrodes that causes a focused magnetic pinch at the end of the coax where the proton and boron atoms are confined waiting the plasma pulse. There are many issues with energy losses from electron bremsstrahlung radiation that require effective solutions before practical devices can be designed and this is where ongoing work is targeted. The idea is to maximize the plasma ion temperature and minimize the electron temperature. This is very exciting work and necessary if some of us need to leave an over-populated earth.
“Nanosecond Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (nPEMF) Technology & Electromolecular Medicine” was presented by Dr. Glen Gordon. Gordon served in the USN Medical Corps during the Viet Nam campaign. He has been working with electromagnetic pulse-based healing devices for many years, leading to the commercial palm-sized device marketed by the company EM-probe, Inc., where he is currently CEO.
Gordon gave a very impassioned talk on the merits of nanosecond pulse electromagnetic therapy for trauma injury reduction. The device is able to prevent the body’s massive inflammatory response if applied to the injury site within 30 minutes of the injury. He related the amazing results seen in Iraq on injured U.S. soldiers and on sports injuries of youngsters. The device builds on the knowledge discovered by Tesla and others early in the last century that living things including humans respond to electromagnetic stimulus. This device has taken many years of refinement to get the pulse shape to be as close to vertical rise and fall as possible and it is far sharper in this respect than many other pulse devices on the market and at a lower price.
The U.S. medical profession purged electromagnetic healing and therapy from its teaching in 1910 and only in recent years has its relevancy on a cellular protein level become important. He explained it is now becoming known that proteins control cell functions through their PCAR protein conformational adaptive response. When a protein molecule is idle, it is folded up with its active site hidden from the surrounding cell medium. The protein molecules contain atoms of oxygen, nitrogen, sulfur, and calcium that are either paramagnetic or diamagnetic and these atoms will feel an electromagnetic signal and if it is the proper signal the molecule will unfold and begin to perform its function, which may be to link ATP energy molecules with cell membranes at a particular channel. The protein molecules also emit and respond to phonons, thus mediating a type of communication process among proteins, DNA, and extra cellular targets like other cells. This is the source of the membrane noise that cell biologists have puzzled over for many years. It is now becoming apparent that proteins and the cell internals have a highly intelligent and sophisticated communication and control system.
The future seems very bright and promising for healing methods that directly access this internal cell energy communication process and will thus obviate the need for invasive surgical methods and side-effect laden drugs.
“Electric Airplanes, Fuel Cells, and Beyond” was the fourth talk, presented by James P. Dunn, who is Chief Technology Officer for The Center for Technology Commercialization in Westborough, Massachusetts. He is past Director of NASA’s NE Regional Technology Center. Dunn holds a B.S.E.E. and is a member of several professional organizations. He is widely experienced and involved with alternative energy including various E-vehicles, hybrids, solar, fuel cells, and hydrogen economy.
Dunn provided an interesting and rather thorough review of the issues facing the “Hydrogen Challenge,” as some like to call it. The hurdles hydrogen faces in competing with hydrocarbon fuels are familiar to many who follow this topic. Hydrogen is currently derived 95% from natural gas and, due to energy losses and processing costs, ends up considerably more expensive than using the natural gas directly. Storage of hydrogen is a big limitation, as it has a low density as a compressed gas or cryogenic liquid and large volumes are needed to supply the energy equivalent of gasoline. Chemical storage is still looking for a magic compound that can beat ammonia, which at 17% is one of the best and safest to work with, and there is a significant infrastructure for ammonia already in place in the U.S. for fertilizer. A distribution network for hydrogen is still a huge missing link depending on what form is to be needed at the end user application. Finally, how best to convert the energy latent in hydrogen into useful work is pitting conversion of current gasoline ICE’s against hybrids and fuel cells. He showed a number of hydrogen vehicle concepts and prototypes, including his favorite—the hydrogen fuel cell airplane. Maybe this is an opportunity for the hydrogen dirigible to make a comeback.
There were some bright spots in the chemical production of hydrogen from water using waste heat that is abundant at power plants and oil refineries. This process uses some new patented chemistry involving the element vanadium that has the promise to make large amounts of hydrogen vary economically depending on how the waste heat is valued.
This hydrogen process is part of a suite of hydrogen technologies being developed by Reaction Sciences, Inc. that include inter-conversion of hydrogen, ammonia, and urea that can be used as storage and as fuel.
Widespread availability and use of hydrogen as a fuel is still a long way off and is a very expensive change over proposition. The chemical schemes mentioned above have serious promise and could help accelerate advent of the hydrogen fueled infrastructure.
“Zero-Point Energy Advances in Europe” was presented by Dr. Thorsten Ludwig, Ph.D. in Atomic Physics and President of the German Association for Space Energy (GASE). He has been doing research in the quantum field theory and ZPE for 12 years.
Ludwig reviewed the beginnings of zero-point energy theory from early 20th century where Planck’s constant was introduced up through today’s experiments to measure the Casimir effect, which is an attractive force between two bodies (typically flat plates) that occurs when the distance between them is very small, in the hundreds of nanometers range. The experiments are very elegant and utilize the limits of today’s technology. Scientists are trying to determine the magnitude of the ZPE and resolve the mismatch between effects observed at the minute Planck distance versus intergalactic scale. This is a very challenging topic to present and Ludwig made it accessible and his friendly, warm style kept the audience engaged.
The sixth talk, “Tidal Power for Electricity Generation,” was given by Martin Burger, President and CEO of Blue Energy Canada (www.blueenergy.com). He has spent the last 17 years working to develop a tidal power system based on vertical shaft turbines that will be suitable for tidal power electrical generation at key sites around the globe. The greatest potential exists in higher latitudes where the tides have the largest change in sea level and where the tide must flow through narrow passages. Theoretical tidal power in such areas is quite large and could supply major amounts of electricity. A large installation would consist of multiple 20 megawatt turbines linked side-by-side like a fence across the tidal passage and a causeway could be built atop the structure to enable commerce and travel across the passage. The turbines would be supported by large caissons anchored to the sea bottom. Tidal flows are very predictable and the power could be matched to the load swings by integrating with other sources and by building a series of plants along a coast so the delay in the tides would allow some load sharing. Burger came across as a confident, knowledgeable, and ardent advocate for tidal power with the elegant turbines they have designed after numerous iterations. He projects that in Europe alone there is a potential for 600 billion British Pounds worth of tidal power business.
Host and emcee Dr. Tom Valone presented on “Progress in Future Energy.” Valone is well known for his substantial contributions to the alternative and new energy areas as well as the bioenergetics area for healing. He has numerous inventions and publications to his credit.
Valone gave an overview with some humor of the plight of the world today with global warming trends and impending sea level increases up to 80 meters from very recent studies even while oil production is near peak and demand for energy in developing countries is growing rapidly. The challenge for new energy sources is huge, as is the business opportunity. He highlighted several promising technologies that are poised to pick up some of the load. A magnetic gradient Searl type device, the MEC built by the Russian team of Godin and Roschin, seems well on its way to being validated and commercialized. Use of compressed air for energy storage, both on large scale and small vehicles, is gaining some credibility and Valone showed a video clip of some AU vehicles.
“Progress in Quantum Vacuum Engineering: Nanotechnology and Propulsion” was presented after the banquet by Dr. Fabrizio Pinto, Ph.D. in physics from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. He is now President and CEO of Interstellar Technologies in Monrovia, California, after serving in various positions in academia and astrophysics at JPL.
Pinto gave a fine presentation on the possibilities of engineering the quantum vacuum and thus controlling the Casimir force to accomplish tasks on the nano scale for medical purposes and to generate lifting and propulsion forces for interstellar travel on the macro level. Excellent use of animation was made to show the many fascinating concepts. He brought out the fact that Fermi had published a paper in 1921 describing the effect of gravity on the coulomb force around a charged particle. This paper is only now in 2006 being translated from its original Italian to English and being republished for the greater science audience. The experimental ability to manipulate the Casimir force is at present very minute and some breakthroughs would help prove the utility of this force to do useful work.
Sunday, September 24:
“Bio Advances with Electromagnetic Fields” was the first talk given on Sunday morning, by Dr. Tania Slawecki. She is an Assistant Professor of Materials at the Materials Research Institute at Penn State University.
Slawecki presented some remarkable work she has been doing to investigate whether any effects of various electromagnetic healing devices and natural energy healing methods like Reiki can be measured. Raman infrared spectroscopy of water samples was able to show effects from healers under some circumstances and not others. It is not clear how the energy from a Chi-Gong master can instantly affect the spectra of water when the master is several kilometers away and the spectra of the water shows a large unusual peak. Since living creatures are made mostly of water, it is reasonable that water will have some kind of order related to the health of the creature and that if the structure can be altered from without, then health can be restored when it is failing. This work can go a long way toward weeding out the devices and methods that have little or no effect from the many available on the market and clarify how and why the ones that are effective work. This is a real positive step toward bringing energy healing into wider use and acceptance.
“Solar Energy Secrets of Silicon” was presented by James Dunn, who also gave a talk the previous day. Dunn related with a very colorful presentation that the U.S. has lost its lead in the rapidly growing (40% per year) PV business and now only ships 14% of the worldwide total new PV wattage. PV systems are now 94% silicon based and the demand for PV silicon has well exceeded the historical source from surplus chip grade silicon. This has caused spot market prices for PV grade silicon to spike and shortages to occur, slowing production and delivery of systems under order. There are new processes to make PV grade silicon set to be built and expansions of current technology for PV silicon in the pipeline to ease the shortage. Many improvements in PV systems are being tested and will lead to higher efficiencies and lower costs, which will make PV even more competitive with traditional power generation. The future seems bright for PV, especially if the cost of thin film technology for Si-based and other metals can be scaled up efficiently.
Dunn also talked about some new high mpg vehicles that are in prototype stages that are really cool looking and promise to break the hold of the traditional gasoline ICE powered vehicles on transportation.
“Catalytic Energy Science” was presented by Russ George, who has a long, impressive background in environmental areas and cold fusion energy experiments. Russ has a unique status in that he is CEO for two parallel and linked business entities. One provides clean abundant fusion energy and the other abates the backlog of climate altering carbon dioxide emissions.
We were shown a number of convincing data and micrographs of Pd metal exposed to ultrasonic cavitation in heavy water with explosive eruptive melting cavities that can only be explained by nuclear magnitude energy release. The catalytic Case cell helium generation with time is also very convincing evidence for cold fusion. Russ and D2Fusion are bent on building home heating size units utilizing some adaptation of the ultrasonic driven heavy water fusion in the near future. A very exciting event indeed when it happens, as it will likely be the first commercial validation of the discovery announced by Pons and Fleischmann in 1989. The latter, by the way, is consulting with D2Fusion.
George has taken on the carbon dioxide abatement issue head on and has a business technology platform to go out on the oceans where iron is lacking in the water and add it to catalyze a bloom in plankton growth that pulls carbon dioxide from the air and converts it to biowaste that sinks to the ocean bottom. Much of the ocean is deficient in iron at 3 ppt (parts per trillion), which limits the planktons’ ability to grow and fix carbon by photosynthesis. Nature provides iron by dust picked up in dry desert areas that drops into the sea. Modern satellites can actually track the dust and the plankton blooms that result when the dust falls into the water. Nature only can use the magnetite form of iron oxide so the fertilization has to use this form, which is readily and cheaply available as a paint pigment. It is only necessary to raise the local ocean iron content to 30 ppt to evoke a major bloom. The leverage value of iron to carbon dioxide fixed is several hundred thousand so that Planktos can offer carbon credits at $2 per ton, which is well below other sequestering strategies. George points out that if we don’t lower the carbon dioxide content of the ocean, we risk it becoming so acidic that the plankton stop growing and the whole food chain in the oceans collapses. There is already evidence that this is happening in some spots. I suggest visiting his two websites and learning more about his globe saving opportunities.
“Optimum International Intellectual Property Strategy for Minimizing Litigation Risks of Emerging Energy Technology” was presented by Pal Asija, JD. He is a professional engineer, inventor, and patent attorney. He gave a dynamic, high energy treatise on how to successfully navigate the intellectual property minefield based on his own experiences; he related strategies for structuring one’s invention application to get the best patent coverage and minimize legal action from other parties.
“Experiments with Spiral Magnetic Motors” was presented by Dr. Ted Loder. He is retired from a long tenure as a Professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of New Hampshire. He is published widely and has worked in environmental areas for many years.
Loder showed us his efforts to build a magnetic motor using a linear permanent magnet gradient rolled into a spiral as a stator around a rotor with a single magnet at its tip. The concept goes back to the 1970s, as developed by Kure Tekko Co. and published in the June 1979 issue of Popular Science. The free energy idea is to have the magnetic gradient pull the rotor around and then at the gap a small solenoid is placed where a short electromagnetic pulse is applied at just the right instant to pull the rotor along further to restart it on the gradient. This is where the energy gain is either made or lost. If the energy used in the solenoid is low enough, the rotor work can more than recover that on the next revolution, but if not then the motor will not achieve self running. Loder showed us an evolution of refinements in his prototype effort to the point where he is looking at some special materials for the solenoid that do not need much external power to generate the needed solenoid pulse. He has not achieved self run yet as far as he revealed and he continues to improve his design. These ideas seem so clever and simple yet they defy the efforts of many to make them work.
“Insight into the Operation of the SEG and Inverse Gravity Vehicle” was the last presentation, given by John Thomas, Jr., who has been an electrical technician for 40 years and has had extensive contact with Professor John R.R. Searl since 1990. Thomas authored Antigravity: The Dream Made Reality, about Searl‘s work. In 1995, the two co-founded Direct International Science Consortium, Inc. to develop the “Law of the Squares,” discovered by Searl many years ago.
Thomas described the basic design of the three ring device with cylindrical magnet rollers between them separating the middle ring from the other two. The rings and rollers do not touch and are perfectly suspended like a magnetic bearing. The electrical output is drawn from coils on the outer stationary ring. When the device autorotates up to sufficient speed it generates such high potential that it becomes enveloped in a pinkish plasma and produces enormous gravity repulsion forces. Despite the many hardships endured by Searl, he made a number of fairly large saucer unmanned craft that were demonstrated publicly. Unfortunately, as fate has it, no film footage of these flight demos has been made available. Thomas showed many still photographs of saucer craft and workers. The overhead projector failed part way through the presentation so that we had to view the pictures on the laptop. They will be posted on the IRI website later.
Searl is now elderly and in marginal health living in the UK in a small apartment with some electronic equipment where he can still tinker. Thomas is attempting to carry on Searl’s work and get funding to commercialize the “Law of the Squares” technology. The whole story makes you want to believe in the Searl discoveries and their amazing potential, but there was one attendee who claimed to have a copy of the original Searl papers from many, many years ago and he challenged anyone to compare them with what Thomas and Searl are offering for sale now and see the disconnect. As often is the case, we are left to our own discernment to determine the validity of someone’s claims.
Exhibitors and Posters:
I refer you to Sterling Allan’s summary linked in the first paragraph for his excellent coverage of these important participants at COFE-II.
In conclusion, I want to compliment Tom Valone, his wife Jackie, and all of the volunteers, speakers, musicians, and attendees for making this a very enjoyable, informative, and productive conference. This event was well worth the time and fees to be a participant. The speakers gave high quality, current, and vital talks with a credible balance between projections on the exciting potential of the new technologies to improve life on earth and the necessary candor to admit the difficulties and challenges limiting the realization of, say, a hydrogen energy infrastructure economy and the investment needs in PV grade silicon to increase capacity to meet the rapidly growing orders for PV installations. I urge readers to download any of the presentations that are now online to see for themselves the material presented and even obtain the proceedings when they are available from the IRI website. The service that Tom is providing not only to the alternative and new energy community, but humanity in general, is invaluable and I look forward to upcoming events as the intersection of global climate change, peak oil, and developing countries’ economic growth precipitates major paradigm changes.
One final comment I have is that the typical attendees were middle age or older and the movement needs to find a way to interest the younger generations more widely as it will take their will and passion to make these sweeping changes. Hopefully new advances will encourage more participation by younger scientists and activists; well-organized and attainable conferences like COFE-II are a step in the right direction.