LENRG G-Day Milano : Airbus and LENR

  • (This is the first small article to report what I have seen in Milano G-Day this 10th of April)

    In Milan I had the chance to talk with Jean-Francois Geneste, chief scientist in Airbus, and with the German author of the recent LENR patent of Airbus, Bernhard Kotzias.

    During his presentation, Jean-Francois Geneste told that Airbus cannot afford to miss LENR but that if LENR was an experimental fact, it still has to be confirmed it is not an artifact. He explained that LENRG, the ecosystem organized by LENR-Cities, targets the certification of LENR by academics, a G-day program announced today, to end with the current questions, and that a theory is needed to define the important parameters so that engineers can improve continuously the technology. This is the key for an industrial.

    He was clear that inside Airbus, this strategy to investigate around LENR have opponents, but also supporters, like Bernhard Kotzias who work on the LENR technology described by the recently filed patent.

    Jean-Francois Geneste has proposed a kind of challenge. Airbus propose to help by providing efficient external combustion engine that they have developed in-house. It is a thermo-acoustic engine, producing electricity with an efficiency of about 35% at 1000°C. More precisely, this engine today is a prototype designed for spatial applications, with versions from 250W to few kW, and more to come. Current version have an efficiency of 31% at 1000C but it could be modified at low cost for 38% at 800°C, and with expensive modifications it should reach 50% at 800°C… The asymptotic performance should be about 60-70% at 1000°C. The idea would be to couple the reactor with the engine, and feedback the electricity in a closed loop, letting the system run for few weeks. Such a demonstration should convince any rational engineer. A COP above 3 would allow such a demonstration.

    Another key idea that Mr Geneste expressed, is that LENR is not enough for Airbus. For their applications, it need to have good performance, and to be improved continuously. The COP of course need to be enough to allow an electric feedback as proposed for the previous test. For aerospace applications the reactors need to be lightweight.

    I asked him if Airbus would also help a replicating team out of LENRG, and he answered that this was not a problem. He asked the same question to Michel Vandenberghe who told me that proposing challenge was a key approach to mobilize academics and startups.

    Jean-Francois Geneste’s conclusion put the emphasis about Airbus support to LENR-Cities.

    I tried to get more informationabout the LENR patent that Bernhard Kotzias filed for Airbus Defense and Aerospace. Basically there is no comment, as it is work in process. Of course a patent is based on some experiments. He also explained that the patent claims a way to better control a LENR reactor. The general feeling is that LENR itself will not be patented as there is too many publications, and he cited old works, showing me his deep knowledge of the domain.

  • I have found a paper on what seems t be their thermoacoustic engine


    The final RTAG concept consists of the RHU, TAG, thermo-mechanical enclosure, radiators, loop heat pipes, and various internal mounting systems. The design was supported by TAG analysis, preliminary mechanical and thermal models, and electrical simulation. With 2 x 400Wth RHU assemblies the best performance in the Mars atmosphere was 126W electrical output, i.e. a total system efficiency of 32%. It may be possible that this could be increased to 34% if recently observed improvements to TAG efficiency are also realized. The overall mass was estimated at 50.0kg which leads to a specific power of 2.5We/kg. It should be noted that the cause of the difference to the alternative US concepts is the lower thermal output per kg of the European Am-241 fuel, compared to Pu-238 which is used by NASA. The TAG efficiency is seen to be comparable to that of a Stirling convertor although the TAG has no moving parts at the hot end and is therefore expected to be more reliable.

  • LENRG just published a short video on the LENRG Milan conference.

    It is just few takes of presentations and discussions, with music.
    Anyway you will see who was here, even me... talking with my usual enthusiasm. :huh:

    It is a bit the same as the one made for Oxford conference