Its been 19 years since the Fleischmann-Pons Effect (FPE) burst out in a flurry of too much information that was poorly understood, explained and tested. That and the media storm and behaviors that people sometimes use under pressure led to the mainstream throwing out the science with the bad feelings. But, the spark triggered the most thoughtful and innovative who were able to put the emotions behind them to seek out the facts of cold fusion or Low Energy Nuclear Reactions (LENR). And the facts remain just as elusive for making understanding possible now as 19 years ago. Some of the world’s most intellectually competent and independent minds have pioneered on. Today, except for fusion bombs the net energy success comes from – ready for it – cold fusion.
There is risk in blogging with credibility when touching this topic. The emotions still run quite high. And yet, humanity has to overcome the status quo of what is known to grow because if we wouldn’t have accepted change and new views we’d still be gathering food and that would be the never ending energy issue for everyone to keep callused feet moving. Adaptation and using the ever-coming rush of new understanding is what makes us human.
What triggered this post is the consensus that Professor Yoshiaki Arata working at Osaka University in Japan conducted a top quality experiment with many of the latest innovations to cold fusion are accepted as “hard data” by an international group of experts in the field. The experiments main success is that the apparatus as designed by Professor Araka can produce excess heat on demand. That is net energy from the inputs. The questions about the inputs such as electrical or other forms of power applied, accurate and continuous measurements, and monitoring have been exhaustively examined. This again provides the problem of explaining where the excess heat and pressures the apparatus forms come from.
Additional information findings from the experiment include:
- Experiments in which the ratio of output to input heat has exceeded 2500% (output greater than input energy by a factor of approximately 25);
- Excess heat experiments in which the heat has been produced on-demand, in low power, high electrical impedance devices, using nearly pure heavy water;
- The systematic use of two well-calibrated calorimeters and cathodes, involving forms of precision measurements of heat in a manner that has provided a way to study an effect (referred to as “heat after death”), in which excess heat continues in an electrolytic environment after electrical input current has been stopped;
- Detailed studies involving material response and structure in the presence of the electrolytic effects associated with excess heat, which have provided insight into the nature of excess heat generation, and
- A series of studies in which higher energy particles were observed, including low level neutron emission in the kinds of co-deposition experiments that have been developed by Stanislaw Szpak and his colleagues from the Naval Space Warfare Systems Center.
There have been 14 meetings of the International Conference on Condensed Matter Nuclear Science (ICCF) the most recent held last month in Washington D.C. With 181 registered participants with 119 from the U.S., 17 from Japan,, 12 Italian, 8 Russian, 5 German, 3 French, 2 Canadians, 2 Brits, and 1 each from China, Finland, India, Malaysia, Taiwan, and the Ukraine there is a true international following. When you consider that virtually all of these are self-supporting researchers, it’s an impressive list indeed. The conference provided 61 oral presentations, with 36 posters scheduled for participants to share knowledge and know-how. You might note that as well as scientists the participant list includes investors and a crew from the CBS television program 60 Minutes whose preconceptions and purpose are not yet known.
The group is still looking for cover from the disaster from 19 years ago. With LENR and the program itself began with the words “14th International Conference on Condensed Matter Nuclear Science,” followed by the phrase, “14th International Conference on Cold Fusion,” we might suspect that the hangover isn’t over yet. It certainly needs to be over. There is something real going on in this field and it needs serious support as energy production from heat can get going in heat pump generators at 165 degrees F. “Get Over It” is getting to be a necessity.
Talbot Chubb graphed a plot of atypical time history of temperature measurements during Professor Arata’s experiments. In the figure, there are three sets of curves labeled A (associated with the two upper curves), C (the third highest curve), and D. In the plots associated with A and C, the temperature is shown, as a function of time, immediately at the boundary of (in the case of A) and inside (in A and C) a nm-scale size palladium (Pd) sample in the presence of an insulating oxide, ZrO2, after a gas is loaded into it (by applying a pressure of ~100 atmospheres). In the two curves associated with A, the Pd/ZrO2 is loaded with D2, and the temperature inside the sample (labeled Tin) is shown in the upper curve; immediately below this curve, a second curve is shown of the temperature (labeled Ts) at the boundary of the stainless steel flask (the subscript “s” in Ts is used as a short-hand for “stainless steel”) that contains the gas and the sample. In the curve associated with C, the temperature (comparable to the highest curve associated with A, and labeled Tin) is plotted for a situation in which ordinary hydrogen, H2, is loaded into the Pd/ZrO2 sample. The third plot, labeled D, shows the time history of ambient temperature of the room where the experiment was conducted.
What is important is the progress. The heat gains are now substantial over very long periods. Arata has data for over 3000 continuous minute runs or more than two full days. Materials, both in the solids and gases are of interest as well as the basic set up and devices used to run the phenomena. Results now can be seen across multiple experimental types.
What remains is a theory to explain what is happening in terms that can be understood and explained to the many. It will come in due course. But the important news is that Arata has an experiment that develops and early peak of 5.5 degrees C and a steady state well over a full degree C. Not a lot, but it’s a fine start.
Soon we’ll 20 years on from the FPE initial disaster, a generation if you will. Had the first announcement and early replication gone better perhaps we’d be much further along by now. But that is OK. Those who picked up the cold fusion puzzle and have been working on it will be heroes of note someday. But for me, just hanging in there, staying the course, learning, experimenting and bringing a mystery of energy to the world that just might solve many problems makes them my heroes today.