FP's experiments discussion


  • [...]


    Is it more likely that CCS conditions are met, or LENR is happening, as explanation for FPHE?
    The original F&P open cells have known issues (I'm hoping Kirk or somone can provide a reference since I'm too lazy) that meet CCS conditions
    Kirk has suggested some mechanisms that meet these conditions and apply to closed cells.


    More likely according to what analysis? CCS would produce one effect, apparent anomalous heat. That would leave all the other reported LENR effects unexplained, without even a context that might make them reasonably possible, even if not specifically understood. So even if it were so that somehow CCS were considered, by some analyst to be more likely to explain a narrow understanding of the FPHE, it would not be satisfactory as an overall explanation, just of one effect. So in order to maintain the plausiblity of CCS, Shanahan then invents a series of other "plausible explanations" -- in his estimation -- and the overall construct becomes inordinately complex.

    Quote

    The argument therefore is about the magnitude of the results, and of the (CCS) conditions. This has to be conducted seriously and quantitatively for specific experiments, not using generalisations.


    Further, Kirk is not arguing he knows CCS applies. He is arguing that it could apply and it is for those claiming specific results as extraordinary to show it does not. That, Kirk says, has not happened.

    The context has shifted. As science moves on, it can easily occur that all the possible objections to some analysis are not considered. For me to decide if CCS has been thoroughly ruled out, for myself, would require quite a lot of work. Why should I undertake this?


    Now, if Shanahan were coming up with generally plausible explanations, I might be more motivated. But I do not find his explanations plausible. So far, he's hinted that he has an explanation for the SPAWAR back-side tracks. I know how he has explained this in the past, and it is little short of preposterous.


    His concept of unexpected recombination at the cathode, from oxygen bubbles hitting the cathode, requires a process that is not observed at the levels required, to my knowledge. This is the bottom line: Shanahan has not convinced those in a position to do the involved work that his ideas are worth any additional effort. He complains about this, but "the burden of proof is on the claimant." If someone is worried that the reported effects are not real, and they find Shanahan cogent, then, yes, they might consider that the "original claimants," cold fusion researchers, have not met some required level of proof. But Shanahan isn't convincing anyone that matters.


    Quote

    Further, it would be foolish to assume, as Abd does in his arguments, that either CCS applies to all these experiments or it applies to none.

    I am not aware that I have assumed that and, in fact, I think I stated that CCS might apply to some experiments. That is not an acceptance that it applies, in fact, to any, but ... calorimetry is difficult and errors abound. This is why, in fact, I call the calorimetry evidence, by itself, "circumstantial." It is what was originally discovered.

    Quote

    The (false) argumnet here is I think that if CCS does not apply to all experiments, then the remainder prove LENR. After LENR is proven to exist in this setup it becomes more likely than CCS for the remainder. i'll call this the "single-headed hydra" argument.
    The problem with "single-headed hydra" is the implicit assumption that only one systematic error can lead to FP positives.

    That would be foolish. This is a straw man argument.

    Quote

    If CCS does apply to some FPHE experiments the fact that this went unrecognised for many years, and is still not accepted by the LENR community, proves Shanahan's point that systematic errors can be an issue here. In which case a careful experimenter would wonder whether there are other systematic errors. The hydra, here, has a number of heads that is in principle unknown. Chop off one and you don't know whether you have finished the job, though you can hope.

    This is the problem: there are an unlimited number of "hydra heads" that can be proposed. How far is it necessary to eliminate all of them. Your analysis, Thomas, claims that Shanahan's work was "unrecognized." No, it was recognized, Storms replied in the journal, and has often referred to it. Rather, CCS has not been accepted as plausible, by many who are expert in calorimetry. And CCS is about their expertise, not about something completely alien (as cold fusion was to nuclear physicists, who probably should have kept their fingers out of the pie, just as Pons and Fleischmann made a mistake using the F word, when they really didn't know what was happening. And, in fact, we still don't know, beyond what I've stated.

    Quote


    It comes back to Ed Storms's remark that I addressed in the link above.


    [the is LENR real question] can only be answered with any confidence by comparing the results of many measurements. Analysis of a single measurement has no meaning because the potential for error is too great. We now have many experiments with common agreement about the basic behavior.


    The existence of systematic errors and selection bias makes this argument unsound.

    . The existence. Thomas, you are stating your interpretation as a fact. Those are default possibilities.

    Quote

    In this case CCS is one example (with strong evidence from Shanahan in at least one case) of a systematic error. To follow Storms above you need to be sure that you know and have cut the head off all systematic (and for isolated less well validated setups individual) errors. You need to note that selection bias will favour experiments with undetected systematic errors, and still find his argument good.


    One hydra or many?

    One with many tentacles.


    Obviously we need to know about what is confirmation bias, called selection bias here, in order to evaluate science in general. However, what's the point here? Unless someone takes up CCS and presents it in a cogent and understandable way, it's going nowhere. I just reread Shanahan's early papers. Nothing stands out as a clear argument. Yes, sometimes, it is necessary to study a paper thoroughly before understanding it. However, what is the motivation to do this? I wrote about, generally, what I know about. I often research a topic and learn about it, but I have limited time. I can't do that with everything.


    Why should I take the substantial time required to study Shanahan's claim in detail? He has received response from scientists in journals. He is unhappy about that, complaining about journal editors and how unfair they are.


    This is not inspiring. That claim from cold fusion researchers went nowhere, even though, yes, a case could be made for unfair reduction of access to journals. In order to move forward, cold fusion researchers had to use what was available, not complain about what was not available.


    --to be continued below--

  • Quote

    Much of the polemic argument here assumes a single hydra. Specifically, the assumption is that if a systematic error can be shown not to apply in one experiment, therefore it must not apply in all.

    Clear straw man argument. Who said that?
    This is about a world that does not exist, a world where *proof* is required before going ahead.


    No, what is needed, ordinarily, and even with something like cold fusion, is preponderance of the evidence. It is not necessary to prove every detail, and unless one has unlimited funding, it is probably impossible.


    The direct evidence for cold fusion is not all that calorimetry, by itself. It is the correlation of anomalous heat with helium.


    Helium was not expected to be the ash. Pons did originally announce finding helium, very early on, when Walling and Simons appeared with the suggestion, but they abandoned it, probably because helium provided them with quite a conundrum. They thought that the effect was a bulk effect, happening in the palladium lattice. If it were, helium generated there would remain in the lattice, almost all of it. Instead, it was only found within the top 25 microns of the surface (and the real figure is probably a micron).


    It was Miles in 1991 who showed helium in the outgas, correlated with heat. The correlation he found and published in the end, was quite clear and unmistakable. He published all his data, he did not cherry-pick. Out of 33 measurements, 12 showed no heat and no helium. Of the other 21, 18 showed helium varying with the heat, with a ratio not far from the theoretical value for deuterium fusion. 3 experiments showed heat and no helium. What happened? Well, one of those involved a power failure and calorimetry error is suspected. Two were the only two measurements involving a PdCe cathode. He reported it all, not just "success."No cherry-picking, no confirmation bias. And Miles has been confirmed.


    All of this work has flaws. It's not perfect. But what is the preponderance of the evidence?


    And then what do we do? Demand a billion dollars per year for cold fusion research?


    No, we are suggesting modest research.The first step is to measure the heat/helium ratio to increased precision. This completely bypasses the Shanahan claims.


    We now know how to do those measurements more thoroughly, and it is probably easier than was thought. While I assume that in the experiments that will be done, cell materials will be analyzed before and after, to capture all the helium from an FP cell, instead of the roughly 60% that Miles found -- if the total figure is at 23.8 MeV/4He -- all it takes is some reverse electrolysis to dissolve the outer layer of palladium. That was done twice, and both times it moved the measured ratio to right on the money for 23.8 Mev/4He, within experimental error. (Which was estimated at 10% in SRI M4).


    That is, Thomas, we know what is happening at the chemistry level, based on the preponderance of the evidence. Deuterium is being converted to helium, and heat. This is taking place at or near the surface of the palladium, so most of the helium escapes, but some is trapped, but only very near the surface. *How* that conversion happens, we don't know. There are ideas, that's all.If this nuclear reaction -- that conversion is a nuclear reaction -- is taking place, all the other effects such as tritium, transmutations, and a few neutrons, become reasonable as rare side-reactions or branches. Almost all the history of cold fusion comes into focus.


    CCS is not worth delaying that relatively simple confirmation work for. If Shanahan wants to be a part of the future, instead of a footnote from the past, he could start seriously cooperating in creating what might be done in those tests. What might be missing from existing calorimetry? How could precision be increased?


    Once the goal is to measure results as accurately as possible (this was not he goal of much cold fusion research! -- usually the goal was to try to increase reliability, not accuracy) if there is some CCS effect, it will be seen.

  • @Thomas: You are a wizard of long writings, but many words alone don't give the content any higher quality by default.


    In your latest answer(s) to Abd about CCS you totally ignore his answer to you that FPHE show both excess heat AND excess tritium which rule out CCS because CCS apply to excess heat ONLY.


    Helium.


    Tritium is also seen, but has never been correlated with heat. There has been a lot of confusion about this. Tritium is not "commensurate" with heat, that was obvious from the start, but the question of whether or not it is correlated (as in heat, tritium, no heat, no tritium, perhaps) is of high interest. Storms thinks that tritium is produced by the same process, though at much lower rate, when hydrogen and deuterium are the reactants. Maybe. But we have almost no data that can be used to study the correlation, a great deal of cold fusion research simply did not look for it.

    Quote

    I understand your strategy of answers as 'divide and conquer' and that goes well with your hydra.


    Now, be nice, Mats!

    Quote


    But this hydra head have BOTH lightning and thunder and both must be explained simultaniously.

    Yes, you get my point. It blows CCS out of the water, relegating it to a possible historical detail. I consider there is already enough work that's been done to show this, but if anyone disagrees, we can hope that Texas Tech and ENEA will complete their work in not long, in measuring this ratio to increased precision. This effort involves people with high experience at generating the effect, i.e., McKubre and Violante, and Duncan will, I'm confident, ensure that it's all done with high integrity.


    The Wall is coming down.


  • OK, I like the ideas Eric, and they seem decisive. Perhaps something may be missed there, even though it sounds credible to my nuclear naivete.


    Possible issue: are ULM neutrons truly indiscriminate in creating products? I suspect W-L-S view the process as somehow biased against long lived isotopes... easy in, easy out so to speak. The time to neutron absorption in W-L hypothesis is extremely short.... or so they claim. Is their an activation energy at low ambient cold neutron absorption that is missed or hidden with hotter neutrons?


    Why harp on W-L?


    Simple theory, at least some of W-L is.... which has attracted a lot of adherents.... admittedly not among the "experts"..... but once those expert folks are without the senatorial robes (that is from their possible failure to recognize reality), they begin to look a lot like the rest of the peasants :-).

  • Essentially, it seems you want to create neutrons in an accelerating bucket. The feasible accelerations are, I suspect, way too low to generate a neutron flux. Those neutrons will still be absorbed nearly immediately, before the matrix forming them is accelerated away.


    Yes, my notion is likely dependent on the neutron flux being very much a surface or very near surface phenomenon. Of course the path out of the bucket must be evacuated or at least very low cross-section to ULM or cool neutrons. Even the 150 m/s neutrons are very cold... if I understand the relationship that you reiterate, they need to see nothing until they register on a suitable target for their assessment by induced short lived radioisotopes in the stationary periphery of the centrifuge or further out.


    If the LENR process is generating ULM neutrons, and if it is confined to the surface of the generating substrate matrix, then nearly half of the neutrons would be disposed to exit the matrix with minimal chance at nuclear encounter before being accelerated away.

  • Dear Abd,


    Thank you for your detailed replies to my posts on this issue of CCS and the F&P experiments.


    You raise many issues, and I'm going to reply to your concerns in two (long) future posts. This post can serve as a marker and index.


    my first replywill be addressing your question "Why should I bother to disprove CCS?". In this I will also deal with some of your questions about the hydrae - that analogy goes to the heart of the matter.


    My second reply will be looking at Oystla's "strong evidence" F&P paper. I promised here to look thoroughly at a (different) F&P paper and its critique by Morrison. I never got around to that, partly because the F&P claims were so insubstantial. However this paper has very substantial claims. I will go through:


    the paper itself:
    Calorimetry of the palladium-deuterium-heavy water system
    Martin Fleischmann. Stanley Pons, Mark W. Anderson, Lian Jun Li and Marvin Hawkins
    http://www.lenr-canr.org/acrobat/Fleischmancalorimetr.pdf


    Wilson et al's critique
    http://newenergytimes.com/v2/l…AnalysisOfExperiments.pdf


    Fleischman and Pons's reply to Wilson et al's critique:
    http://newenergytimes.com/v2/l…schmannM-SomeComments.pdf


    This string of comment is useful and while I'm no calorimetry expert it is possible to trace through arguments and counter-arguments. Further, I'm a good enough mathematician not to be blinded by science here. Kalman filters lie within my area of competence and I know how they can be used and abused. I think I have enough statistical background to note issues in data processing. So this will be fun.

  • Why should Abd care about CCS?


    I'll get to that question, the topic of this post, in a roundabout way...


    Abd wrote:


    Clear straw man argument. Who said that?


    You said it in the post immediately preceding your question!
    in response to:

    TC wrote:

    One hydra or many?


    you wrote:

    Abd wrote:

    One with many tentacles.


    And your arguments throughout implicitly assume it. Let me elaborate on that:


    Quote

    No, what is needed, ordinarily, and even with something like cold fusion, is preponderance of the evidence. It is not necessary to prove every detail, and unless one has unlimited funding, it is probably impossible.


    But that is only true if there is one hydra, or if there is no possibility of selection bias for systematic error.


    You rely on the chances of different experiments having such error being independent. In that case, given enough positive experiments, you can make the chances of them all being error arbitrarily small. "Preponderance of evidence" wins. However, if there are possible systematic errors (hydra heads) then errors are not independent and this does not work.


    Even then if there is only one hydra you can cut off all of its heads pretty easily. For any head (systematic error) you can find an experiment which has clearly cut it off. One hydra and it is dead.


    So your two assumptions here:

    • There is only one hydra
    • Preponderance of evidence means details need not be proven


    Are linked and if one falls so does the other. I realise you may not have thought about the matter like this before. I've noted your comments on this thread and they are great polemic.


    Quote

    The direct evidence for cold fusion is not all that calorimetry, by itself. It is the correlation of anomalous heat with helium.


    That is a separate matter. If you were prepared to admit that "preponderance of evidence" does not work for the F&P + replication excess heat, so there is no strong evidence for LENR there, then of course there may be some other work that does provide strong evidence. I'm with you on He/excess heat correlations, if they exist, being interesting but you will have to be awfully careful because heat will obviously affect outgassing of diffused He in apparatus, electrodes, and electrolyte. The correlation, if you presume D+D reaction, is known and predictive so should this be established to good accuracy, it would indeed be useful evidence.


    Coming back to the post topic

    Abd wrote:

    For me to decide if CCS has been thoroughly ruled out, for myself, would require quite a lot of work. Why should I undertake this?


    I agree, you could reasonably (and sensibly) follow most scientists and view the F&P and replication work as a whole as not showing strong evidence for LENR. In that case more work to establish this would be wasted. You could in that case gain some scientific credibility for your LENR arguments by agreeing that the F&P results do not show strong evidence for LENR, showing you understand that "preponderance of evidence" only works under the assumption of no systematic errors (which you made replying to Shanahan) or the assumption that there is only one hydra, so its heads can be cut off in different experiments (which you made here).


    In that case you could properly argue for strong evidence elsewhere, where the evidence really was strong, and be taken more seriously.


    Of course, it may be that you have some argument, or evidence, not yet posted here that would show the F&P excess heat experiments to be clearly strong evidence. Perhaps some replication that provides strong evidence? Again, in that case your judgement will be more believable if you do not also assert the existence of strong evidence where it does not exist, either from F&P (my arguments will be in next post) or from "preponderance of evidence" - my arguments why this falls are given here and I hope easily understandable.


    Best wishes, Tom

  • "OK, I like the ideas Eric, and they seem decisive. Perhaps something may be missed there, even though it sounds credible to my nuclear naivete. ... Why harp on W-L?"


    Don't take my word for it! I'm also a nuclear naif. I'm just arguing a position (one that I agree with). I like to argue, but I might be wrong. In this particular instance I'm hoping someone will provide additional information that will modify those last two implications, in light of a better understanding of W-L's positions, which I assume are sophisticated enough to anticipate the complaints I've made.


    I am pessimistic that experimental evidence will sway W-L in a different direction, but that's just from my own assessment that they didn't bother to look at any experiments in the first place, and started from an ab initio excercise to figure out how you might get nuclear levels of energy without having to deal with Coulomb repulsion. But it might be that putting their theory to the test would be useful, as you suggest.

  • This problem of apparent negative heat never observed remind me the critic of Wilson, that anyway Fleischmann accepted in case, showing it did not change the results.


    What is amazing is that if CCS is true, why no engineer of chemis or physicists is investigating on that phenomenon that may be of critical interest in electrochemistry, in powerplant.
    this phenomenon if confirmed is rewriting all pas results of calorimetry.


    people don't understand that CCS is more challenging for science than LENR.
    LENR is simply nuclear reaction is condensed matter.
    Nuclear energy is about 80 years old, and the physics associated was stabilized in the 50s.
    Condensed matter is something still very immature, probably started with semiconductors, that started to be understood in the 50s.


    CCS is challenging calorimetry, based on thermodynamic and heat flow equations which are more than 120 year old.


    It is clear the phenomenon is emotional/socio(il)logical not rational.


    LENR is simply the less challenging answer to observations.


    The problem is that it is challenging, not 120 years of lower science and engineering, but finest experts in leading edge science, the particle physicists.


    Occam with his razor proposed to keep the simplest explanation, but if you estimate the simplicity to the cost of accepting it, and you integrate in the cost the sociological cost, then clearly it is simpler to imagine that engineers and chemist were wrong since centuries, and that physicists were right despite all evidence. Evidence are cheaper to deny than academic hierarchy.


    I did not invent this hierarchy, it is just JP Biberian who in a conference explained the hierarchy of science.
    Basically it is from purest and simplest science, to complex and dirty science: first particle physics, physics theory, then material physics, then chemistry, then electrochemistry. Lower than electrochemistry is there biochemistry and then biology...


    Second hierarchy is budget, and third hierarchy is from academic to national lab then to corporate science, to finish in private labs and hobbist science.
    There is also an ethnological hierarchy (call that US centrism , racism, and Morrison expressed numerously)


    LENR is violating this hierarchy with such anomalies :
    - lower scientist have found an anomaly in higher scientists theory
    - lower scientist have reached a practical result that higher and more budgeted science have not reached
    - anomaly without a theory hare reached a success that science with theory did not reach
    - higher scientists did not find an explanation to what lower scientist have explained
    - retired scientist have found what paid scientist cannot explain
    - small science succeeded where big science failed to
    - UK scientists succeeded where paid academic failed
    - Utah, Texas found where California and Boston failed
    - National labs replicate"d what caltech and MIT failed to
    - India succeeded where US dominant labs failed (or believed thei failed, because many have succeeded)



    consequence is that this cannot be true, and thus :
    - higher scientist and their theory are right, and all that follow is a consequence.
    - lower scientist and their experiments are wrong
    - since higher scientist cannot be wronger than lowest, if lower scientists have evidence that cannot be explained by an artifact, this artifact exist, QED.
    - if artifact (eg ccs) cannot exist according to lower scientist theory, this theory is wrong.
    - if artifact (eg heat above chemistry) cannot exist according to higher scientist theory, then lowe scientists have done fraud.
    - if higher scientist have done errors in their explanations of artifac (eg caltech), thent they are not wrong and their claims stay.(ie nature/Science don't retract)
    - if higher scientist have done frauds in their experiments (eg MIT), then they are not wrong (ie nature/Science don't retract)



    the same arguments stand also for ethnological and budget hierarchy.
    This explains how BARC and Bockris results were ignored and insulted while Caltech failure and MIT fraud stand immaculate.


    this theory match the observation.

  • Quote

    people don't understand that CCS is more challenging for science than LENR.


    CCS is not a grand new theory - it is a neat and formal way to describe what everyone knows can happen to any calorimetric setup - that calibration can shift with change in conditions. Engineering is like that - your neat equations rely on assumptions and approximations. When those break the equations work less well.


    Every different experiment has its own issues and it is the job of a good experimenter to work out what they are and control or compensate etc. I think the problem is when you view specific equations as some unalterable shiboleth. Science is above all about reality, and while there are unchanging and exact underlying equations most of real science is done based on a whole load of approximations.


    Quote

    Occam with his razor proposed to keep the simplest explanation, but if you estimate the simplicity to the cost of accepting it, and you integrate in the cost the sociological cost, then clearly it is simpler to imagine that engineers and chemist were wrong since centuries, and that physicists were right despite all evidence. Evidence are cheaper to deny than academic hierarchy.


    We have a set of observations - the excess heat experiments from F&P, Wilson, McKubre, etc. We have an observed anomaly. The question for science is what is the simplest hypothesis to explain this. The two suggestions are "systematic experimental errors" or "some new nuclear reaction mechanism not hinted at elsewhere in physics".


    The details of experimental errors can be very complex, just as the detailed stricture of a sea-shell can be very complex. However the underlying physics is simple and tested by observation over centuries. Nothing new. What activates Occam in this case is whether the errors considered require very unlikely conditions, or are quite plausible. Even without a specific known mechanism (see my next post) "surprising experimental error" is likely - we see it all the time.


    The "new nuclear mechanism" has a different problem. It requires very surprising new physics, it has details not explained by any new physics hypothesis to date, and its details do not cohere with each other or wit other evidence.


    Thus we have a set of "LENR positive observations" claimed by those specifically trying to find LENR. From that we have "How LENR works" hypothesis. This does not well explain the LENR positives which remain inconsistent and surprising, nor does it cohere with any other physical evidence.


    That description of "new nuclear mechanism" gives it a very low probability rating:
    (1) it is inherently complex
    (2) it has very low specific ability to predict observation.


    So Occam is the opposite of what Alain says. I have not addressed his sociological arguments because they are not science. Sure, scientists are human, subject to bias, error, etc etc. But the chances of all scientists being affected the same way are nil and it takes only one to do new work and grasp a Nobel prize, if there really is some new phenomena. So the meta-evidence (which I distrust anyway) does not fall the way Alain thinks.

  • Mats02 wrote:

    In your latest answer(s) to Abd about CCS you totally ignore his answer to you that FPHE show both excess heat AND excess tritium which rule out CCS because CCS apply to excess heat ONLY.


    This is a classic hydra issue. Mats is arguing that there is additional evidence to excess heat, helium measurements. That if helium measurements show LENR then CCS is irrelevant because excess heat is unnecessary.


    I agree. But that is another separate argument - do helium measurements - or helium correlations with excess heat - show extraordinary evidence?


    What cannot properly be done is to group "maybe helium/heat correlation shows LENR" with "maybe excess heat shows LENR" to get "it is therefore strongly likely LENR exists, because it is supported by two different strands of evidence".


    The combination of systematic error possibility, and experiment selection (certainty) mean that given a concerted 30 years attempt to prove that anomalies consistent with a hypothesis exist you expect quite a lot of distinct anomalous results. You don't expect any of them to be strong - but the fact of a whole load of weak results is what you get from random low-level unrecognised systematic errors and experiment (and hence systematic error) selection to find things that "work" - where work means "are supportive of the wanted hypothesis.


    this selection has elements in common with the well-known p-value mistakes found in low quality drug trials and published easily by "pay to publish" low quality journals:
    The math:
    http://www.biochemia-medica.co…testing-and-some-pitfalls
    Some less math comment:
    http://www.medpagetoday.com/Blogs/TheMethodsMan/52171


    The relevance here is that getting results that are positive for a preconceived and desired outcome is pretty easy. Just try lots of different things and some by chance will be positive. Add in systematic errors and you find that when you try lots of different experiment some will give consistently positive results.


    Back to the hydra. You need to kill every head. Separately for each experiment, since each has a different set of possible systematic (and one-off) errors. There as not as someone said above an infinite number of such heads. for any given experiment there are a finite number of possibles - it is just that you need a lot of good critiquing to locate them all. In science this happens automatically - interesting results get tested and replicated by many different people. the longer they survive (all heads to date identified slain) the more attention they get and therefore the more likely that all heads will be found.


    LENR is not like that because the people who do it mostly have no motive (as Abd eloquently states above) to look for hydra heads. As long as there is no head obviously in sight they can claim positive evidence for LENR, get congratulations and maybe funding, etc.


    Normal science would have the same issue except that normal scientists accept that results get scutinised - the more extraordinary the greater the scrutiny - and those hoping to prove an effect are matched by those honest enough and clever enough to look for hydra heads. Sure - it is not as much fun disproving apparent evidence for FTL neutrinos as finding it. But it is just as important for science.


    By the way - you cannot disprove some hypothesised new effect unless it implies definite new predictions that can be tested. LENR does not make any definite new predictions and therefore can never be disproved. Scientists strongly prefer hypotheses that can be disproved, for obvious reasons!

  • To complete what I'm saying about neutrons, there isn't any "neutron bottle." You cannot hold free neutrons. You cannot spin them in a centrifuge. They are not repelled or attracted by anything other than nuclear forces (which then may pull them into a nucleus, but most matter is empty space, and the neutrons will just wander through it until they find a nucleus to join, if there are any suitable. If you were to somehow accelerate a piece of matter that a slow neutron was within, the acceleration would not affect the neutron, it would continue on its merry inertia way. Fast neutrons will bounce off of nuclei. Slow neutrons, not generally.


    Since I have received only comments from Eric Walker and from Abd Lomax on this proposal, I hope here to keep it alive a bit longer. Abd [above] had likely initially misread my recent suggestion re detection of ULM neutrons. To clarify a bit further, since I consider Abd a worthy and an able critic: I don't propose to "generate" neutrons by centrifugation, store them or push them in a "bottle". I propose that the hypothesized neutrons be given an initial velocity of a hundred or so meters per second. The idea is simple, conduct an LENR reaction in a centrifuge whose peripheral or tangential valocity at speed will be 100 to 200 metes per second (I have such a centrifuge, BTW, with four buckets that can accommodate up perhaps 500 cc and 500 g of "cargo" in each bucket).


    Any ultra low momentum (ULM) neutrons so generated may well be expected to escape outward from the centrifuge in a disc of emission at the tangential velocity of centrifuge rotor, scattered to some vectorial extent by the inherent or birth ULM velocity of say ~7 m/s. ULM neutrons are clearly predicted by at least one theory, that is Widom-Larsen, and may be present by implication in other theories or nascent theories, such as Brillouin, and/or by Lundin & Lifgren. In my tentative, and I believe low cost proposal, the ULM neutron directionality, the escape from the surface of lattice of the 100-200 m/s tangential velocity relative to the frame of the laboratory would make detection, characterization and quantification much more accessible compared to the current nearly complete "black box" situation-- that is surely serving no one well.


    My goal is primarily to gain basic information. For example: can we thereby readily dispose of the ULM neutron and perhaps other neutron LENR theories?


    I'll remind the readers that central to the W-L idea is a p+ + e* --> no, where e* is, in the W-L case at least, one form or another of heavy electron sufficient to make up the modest mass balance deficiency in such a reaction.


    Eric Walker suggested that in his view the presence of such neutrons would create all sorts of products that are not detected. Fair enough, but how much do we really know about the behavior of ULM neutrons? I propose that there may be a low but finite activation barrier slowing or preventing ULM neutron absorption by high cross section nuclei, which otherwise would be classically expected to form the bulk of the neutron absorption cross-section.


    I am not proposing to answer, or attempting to answer questions validly raised to the W-L-S idea that gamma emissions are absorbed or otherwise obviated by patches of superconductive heavy electrons-- or whatever else W-L-S have proposed in augmenting their theory to address the "no dead grad student" problem. That needs to be addressed separately.

  • A few comments to Thomas' post:
    Th: "CCS is not a grand new theory - it is a neat and formal way to describe...... that calibration can shift with change in conditions."


    Could be "neat and formal" If it was provable. But it seems not to be. And If a hypothesis can not be proven, you move on to more valuable hypothesis, like there actually might be something there.


    Some other main issues with this "neat and formal" "CCS description", which Thomas seems to have fallen in love with:


    - Shanahan should, but do not explain why negative excess heat power and energy have never been seen in CF research, which would be interpreted as endothermic Events, but actually would be "CCS".Unless a reason is given for asymmetry in the hypothesized mechanism (or any mechanism given and quantified at all), then the CCSH logically fails


    - Shanahan should, but do not explain why this "CCS " phenomenon have not been identified and known by mainstream science during the 100 years of ordinary electrochemistry science.


    - Shanahan calls it a " Matrix effect" - but do not explain what actually this unexplainable mysterious hypothetical occuring and disappearing ghost is.


    - Shanahan does not explain why CCS never have been discovered In the many recalibrations during tests. Meaning it's just a non provable ghost theory.


    - Shanahan does not explain how this effect could apply on anomalous heat production observed in a wide variety of experimental configurations involving different kinds of calorimeters, e.g. isoperibolic, Seebek, and mass flow.


    - Shanahan has never proven by experiment that his "neat and formal Calibration Constant Shift Hypothesis" Really exists. And when CF researchers say they found no such evidence in their own research, they must Obviously be wrong according to Shanahan, since CF is just a Ghost......eeehh...just like CCS probably ;-)


    - Shanahan does not specify mechanisms by which a calorimeter thermal calibration can change in such a way that, just during the periods of putative excess thermal power production, the calibration constant is different from its initial and final calibrated value.
    -Shanahan never explained how his CCS hypothesis Applied to the SRI mass flow calorimetry. Only 1% of the measured heat output is subject to the vagaries of geometric effects on conduction and radiation. The remaining 99% is determined solely from temperature, mass flow rate and the heat capacity of the convecting fluid. None of these measurements are subject to calibration drift and can be measured and calibrated independent of the calorimeter


    Conclusion. I believe Storms are right when he states:
    “The assumptions used by Shanahan to explain anomalous heat claimed to result from cold fusion are shown to be inconsistent with experimental observation.”


    Despite Shanahan’s unsubstantiated allegations, LENR researchers are well aware of the necessity for controls to verify proper instrument function while eliminating more prosaic explanations for the observed effects.


    Furthermore, contrary to Shanahan’s assertions, the observed effects are often several orders of magnitude larger than the measurement errorors

  • My, my, so many posts in so little time, and one in particular not there. I thought I had posted this last week in response to oystia’s comment about me not responding to his comment about LENR being more than a 1% effect, and I see he has repeated it, probably gaining in confidence as he did. Well, let’s look at that.


    The maximum CCS effect you can get is dependent on two things, the applied voltage and the ‘bump-up’. The ‘bump-up- is the magnification you get from the cal constant when you force the instrument output to match the input. It never will with calorimeters because there are always losses. You can minimize it by capturing the largest % of heat you can, but even at 99.3% (or was it 99.7 that McKubre claimed) you still have to correct for that tiny loss for maximal accuracy. McK’s comment that he didn’t need to calibrate simply means he assumed the cal constants without determining them.


    To put some numbers to it, the calorimeter Ed Storms used to generate the data I reanlayzed _ended up_ as a 98% calorimeter. He sent me data from it from before he added water lines on the top of the cell, i.e. capture of any heat loss out the top was not even attempted. In that configuration it was 78% efficient. That means that at least 20% of the generated heat was going out the top. It also means that for whatever power you put in, the direct, no cal constant used, computed output power was 0.78*Pin and we can call that the effective Pout = Pout,eff. To get the cal condition Pout = Pin then you have to multiply by the reciprocal of the efficiency, i.e. Pout = (1/.78)*Pout, eff= (1/.78)*.78*Pin=Pin. 1/.78 = 1.282. So, the ‘bump-up’ with that calorimeter = 28%. This is why you need to see the full calibration equation, so you can determine the ‘bump-up’.


    On to voltage. The %excess tied to recombination is given by the thermoneutral voltage, Eth, for the isotope you are working with, times 100 and divided by the applied voltage E. In the paper oystia reference, they typically use 6V in heavy water, which implies E=6, Eth = 1.54, and %excess = 100*(Eth)/E = 100(1.54)/6 = 25.7%. So to get oystia’s max %excess would require a ‘bump-up’ of 100%, i.e. a 50% efficient calorimeter, but we don’t know for sure the 6V example corresponds to the 50% excess case. But from this math, you can see that you need input data as well as the calibration curve.


    In an open cell, this can be partially accounted for by using just the ohmic heat to calibrate, and in the F&P complicated calorimetry method they may do this. In other words, when you calibrate via electrolysis, you use Pin = I * (E-Eth), not Pin = I*E. That will kill the voltage problem and then you should directly register I*E Watts when 100% recombination occurs. Then you have to remember how much potential recombination heat you can get and not get excited with less than that. You should report the fraction recombination you get and few do that. Miles has noted up to 10% recombination in some of his work, but he’s about the only one who has done this. I looked at a Figure Storms liked to use showing the electrochemical recombination at various currents, and there were several points that showed greater than 20% recombination beyond that (called ‘noise’ by Storms). So the actual % recombination seems variable. Recall that early on at least, no one recognized that at-the-electrode recomb. might occur. They arbitrarily only considered electrochemical recomb. with dissolved O2 which is typically limited to that 2% number everyone likes.


    You are out of luck in a closed cell, because the design attempts to capture all the heat, and you are forced to calibrate using the full I*E as Pin. It’s not valid to use the ohmic heat alone, because normal operation of this cell is at 100% recombination at the catalyst and that puts that heat into the cell.


    I haven’t found a case where both types are data are fully presented, thus it is impossible for us in the outer world to know what the CCS max might be. And given the extraordinary acceptance the CCS has attained (NOT!), I doubt any CFer has even considered it.


    In the F&P complicated calorimetry case, I did post that you get an unrealistic heat transfer coefficient if you extrapolate their 6-9 degree data to the 27 degree jump in T, it seems to go negative, which means that as the cell is generating excess heat, it also sucks heat out of the environment, which makes no sense. Obviously extrapolating is a bad idea, but we are never shown the 9-27 range such that we could figure out what was actually going on in their model.


    Finally, remember that other errors can also be present, as I think was the case in the Patterson Power Cell that claimed at least 20,000% excess, and maybe 30,000%.

  • "The 'new nuclear mechanism' has a different problem. It requires very surprising new physics ..."


    I disagree. Assuming there are genuine non-chemical anomalies in LENR, as I do, the extent to which surprising new physics is required in order to understand and explain them is a function (1) of the creativity of the person looking at the evidence and (2) a sense of what in physics is still somewhat unexplored or is just conjecture.


    There are many understandings in physics that are partly based upon conjecture. I assume this will always be the case. Currently there are assumptions about the constancy of the speed of light, the meaning of the redshift, the precise way in which galaxies and star systems are formed, and various minutiae going on at the nuclear level. Although we can model the decay rate of alpha emitters pretty well using the Gamow theory, "well" here means essentially that it provides a good estimate of the half-life to within a few orders of magnitude.


    One assumption can be seen quite clearly in this HyperPhysics post, concerning our inability to change the half-life of polonium, an alpha emitter. Here Rod Nave is not speaking on his own but is voicing the mainstream physics view of the situation. By Nave's admission, "The forces inside the nucleus are balanced on a razor's edge." The implication is pretty clear -- if you could alter one of those forces by a small amount, for example, through a change in the electron density surrounding the nucleus, the change in decay rate would be big, either up or down. But Nave dispels those hopes by explaining that "The constants that determine nuclear decay rate are stitched tightly into the fabric of the cosmos. The decay rate can't be changed without changing essentially all of chemistry and physics." In the final analysis a conclusion so sweeping as this is pure assertion; a "teaching," which, as I use the term, is just an opinion, however informed.


    If LENR does indeed go back to non-chemical anomalies, a lack of imagination and an impression that our understanding of nuclear physics is comprehensive will prevent someone from putting in the effort to do the lateral thinking needed to come up with some modest, incrementalist conjectures about what might be going on. A lack of imagination and effort will yield to the conclusion that only a radical, hugely disruptive modification of our current understanding of nuclear physics could possibly explain the LENR results.

  • "Eric Walker suggested that in his view the presence of such neutrons would create all sorts of products that are not detected. Fair enough, but how much do we really know about the behavior of ULM neutrons? I propose that there may be a low but finite activation barrier slowing or preventing ULM neutron absorption by high cross section nuclei, which otherwise would be classically expected to form the bulk of the neutron absorption cross-section."


    In order to avoid getting long-lived radionuclides from ULM neutrons, I think you need to propose that somehow the neutron capture cross sections for isotopes that yield short-lived radionuclides are disproportionately larger than those for long-lived ones. Btw, there is a neutron optical potential, which might be along the lines of what you're suggesting above.

  • Oystia wrote (2/16/16) another good example of the CF groupthink that ignores what I have done so far:


    “A few comments to Thomas' post:Th: "CCS is not a grand new theory - it is a neat and formal way to describe...... that calibration can shift with change in conditions."Could be "neat and formal" If it was provable. But it seems not to be. And If a hypothesis can not be proven, you move on to more valuable hypothesis, like there actually might be something there.”


    I can’t understand why you people can’t get it. I showed mathematically that in a really good calorimeter, a trivial change in calibration constant explained the excess heat signal. That's 'PROVEN' and easily understood. Further, the change was systematic, indicating real chemistry. I further suggested that would occur if recombination occurred at the electrode. Szpak, et al took a video of hot spots on an electrode under the electrolyte, claiming they were ‘mini-nuclear explosions’. I added that they could as easily be chemical. Why do you think this is unprovable, and even, not already proven?


    “Some other main issues with this "neat and formal" "CCS description", which Thomas seems to have fallen in love with:
    - Shanahan should, but do not explain why negative excess heat power and energy have never been seen in CF research, which would be interpreted as endothermic Events, but actually would be "CCS". Unless a reason is given for asymmetry in the hypothesized mechanism (or any mechanism given and quantified at all), then the CCSH logically fails”


    Yes, I did. I didn’t have to, it’s not my job requirement, but I did. In fact it is obvious if you consider *all* the data. (Oh and BTW, the "CCSH" does logically fail. Good thing it was Storms. Hagelstein, McKubre, et al's idea.)


    “- Shanahan should, but do not explain why this "CCS " phenomenon have not been identified and known by mainstream science during the 100 years of ordinary electrochemistry science.”


    Because people normally run electrochemical cells like this with separated H2 and O2 electrodes. Thus no possibility of recombination, except through dissolved oxygen if it can cross the cell compartment boundary.


    “- Shanahan calls it a " Matrix effect" - but do not explain what actually this unexplainable mysterious hypothetical occuring and disappearing ghost is.”


    Look up “Matric Effect” on Wikipedia. In the frammenjammer case, no I don’t. In the F&P case, yes I do.


    "- Shanahan does not explain why CCS never have been discovered In the many recalibrations during tests. Meaning it's just a non provable ghost theory.


    Because they use Joule heaters...


    “- Shanahan does not explain how this effect could apply on anomalous heat production observed in a wide variety of experimental configurations involving different kinds of calorimeters, e.g. isoperibolic, Seebek, and mass flow.”


    Because it’s obvious (to most). If at-the-electrode recombination can occur, then the ‘wrapper’ (the type of calorimeter) doesn’t matter. Only if it is an artifact of a specific calorimeter type will it not appear in other types. If it is based in real chemistry _all_ calorimeters should potentially see it. P.S. They are all ‘calibrated’ aren’t they? Then the CCS can apply.


    “- Shanahan has never proven by experiment that his "neat and formal Calibration Constant Shift Hypothesis" Really exists. And when CF researchers say they found no such evidence in their own research, they must Obviously be wrong according to Shanahan, since CF is just a Ghost......eeehh...just like CCS probably ”


    No, and I never will. The CFers have never looked for it because they recognize it will kill the nuclear idea and their groupthink won’t allow them to consider something like that. Instead they resort to illogical arguments and false statements to justify ignoring the idea.


    “- Shanahan does not specify mechanisms by which a calorimeter thermal calibration can change in such a way that, just during the periods of putative excess thermal power production, the calibration constant is different from its initial and final calibrated value.”


    Dude, that’s called the FPHE. What do you think I am explaining? (BTW, in 2000 I used FPHE as Fleischmann-Pons-Hawkins Effect. I find it amusing the CFers are trying to abscond with my acronym just like they tried to alter the CCS one.)


    “-Shanahan never explained how his CCS hypothesis Applied to the SRI mass flow calorimetry. Only 1% of the measured heat output is subject to the vagaries of geometric effects on conduction and radiation. The remaining 99% is determined solely from temperature, mass flow rate and the heat capacity of the convecting fluid. None of these measurements are subject to calibration drift and can be measured and calibrated independent of the calorimeter”


    See above (i.e. Yes, I did).


    “Conclusion. I believe Storms are right when he states:“The assumptions used by Shanahan to explain anomalous heat claimed to result from cold fusion are shown to be inconsistent with experimental observation.””


    I disagree, and have done so in print, a fact which initially Ed wouldn’t acknowledge.


    “Despite Shanahan’s unsubstantiated allegations, LENR researchers are well aware of the necessity for controls to verify proper instrument function while eliminating more prosaic explanations for the observed effects.”


    Ummm…what ‘unsubstantiated allegations’? And no, they’re obviously not.


    “Furthermore, contrary to Shanahan’s assertions, the observed effects are often several orders of magnitude larger than the measurement errorors”


    Nope.

  • AlainCo wrote on Tuesday 2/16/16 :
    “This problem of apparent negative heat never observed remind me the critic of Wilson, that anyway Fleischmann accepted in case, showing it did not change the results.”


    What problem of apparent negative heat? Who has observed *that*? Gosh, if they have I’d better figure out a new theory to match the *new* data. My CCS theory only explains positive apparent excess heats…


    “What is amazing is that if CCS is true, why no engineer of chemis or physicists is investigating on that phenomenon that may be of critical interest in electrochemistry, in powerplant.this phenomenon if confirmed is rewriting all pas results of calorimetry.”


    It’s called “Groupthink” Alain, i.e. “It *has* to be nuclear!”


    “people don't understand that CCS is more challenging for science than LENR. LENR is simply nuclear reaction is condensed matter. Nuclear energy is about 80 years old, and the physics associated was stabilized in the 50s. Condensed matter is something still very immature, probably started with semiconductors, that started to be understood in the 50s.”


    Yeah, neither do I. Can you explain why the CCS problem will rewrite physics textbooks?


    “CCS is challenging calorimetry, based on thermodynamic and heat flow equations which are more than 120 year old.”


    No, not at all.


    “It is clear the phenomenon is emotional/socio(il)logical not rational.”


    No, not at all.


    “LENR is simply the less challenging answer to observations.”


    No, not at all.


    “The problem is that it is challenging, not 120 years of lower science and engineering, but finest experts in leading edge science, the particle physicists.”


    I need some variation here. Instead of “No, not at all.” How about “Say what?”


    “Occam with his razor proposed to keep the simplest explanation, but if you estimate the simplicity to the cost of accepting it, and you integrate in the cost the sociological cost, then clearly it is simpler to imagine that engineers and chemist were wrong since centuries, and that physicists were right despite all evidence. Evidence are cheaper to deny than academic hierarchy.”


    Say what?


    “I did not invent this hierarchy, it is just JP Biberian who in a conference explained the hierarchy of science.”


    So? To paraphrase “Ghostbusters”, is he god?


    “Basically it is from purest and simplest science, to complex and dirty science: first particle physics, physics theory, then material physics, then chemistry, then electrochemistry. Lower than electrochemistry is there biochemistry and then biology...Second hierarchy is budget, and third hierarchy is from academic to national lab then to corporate science, to finish in private labs and hobbist science.There is also an ethnological hierarchy (call that US centrism , racism, and Morrison expressed numerously) LENR is violating this hierarchy with such anomalies :
    - lower scientist have found an anomaly in higher scientists theory
    - lower scientist have reached a practical result that higher and more budgeted science have not reached- anomaly without a theory hare reached a success that science with theory did not reach
    - higher scientists did not find an explanation to what lower scientist have explained- retired scientist have found what paid scientist cannot explain- small science succeeded where big science failed to
    - UK scientists succeeded where paid academic failed
    - Utah, Texas found where California and Boston failed
    - National labs replicate"d what caltech and MIT failed to
    - India succeeded where US dominant labs failed (or believed thei failed, because many have succeeded) “


    Nope. Actually, the ‘hierarchy’ is being supported. The so-called ‘lower scientists’ are coming up with some real crackpot explanations of relatively simple phenomena.


    “consequence is that this cannot be true, and thus :
    - higher scientist and their theory are right, and all that follow is a consequence.- lower scientist and their experiments are wrong”


    Glad you got that right for this case finally.


    “- since higher scientist cannot be wronger than lowest,”


    Say what? Or maybe No, not at all.


    “if lower scientists have evidence that cannot be explained by an artifact, this artifact exist, QED.”


    Lost me there.


    “- if artifact (eg ccs) cannot exist according to lower scientist theory, this theory is wrong.”


    No, not at all. The theory is right because it starts with an incontrovertible fact (a CCS can give erroneous values), shows it happened is a particular case, and then folds reasonable chemical thinking into a proposition it could occur many places. That’s called inductive reasoning.


    “- if artifact (eg heat above chemistry) cannot exist according to higher scientist theory, then lowe scientists have done fraud.”


    Say what? You think they’re fraudulent? That’s really tough to prove Alain.


    “- if higher scientist have done errors in their explanations of artifac (eg caltech), thent they are not wrong and their claims stay.(ie nature/Science don't retract)”


    Say what? What do you think all the arguments in the literature are about? There’s also a website that watches retractions…you might Google it and check it out.


    “- if higher scientist have done frauds in their experiments (eg MIT), then they are not wrong (ie nature/Science don't retract)”


    Double and triple Say what?


    “the same arguments stand also for ethnological and budget hierarchy.”


    Maybe, if I could figure out what you’re saying. But right now it looks like No, not at all.


    “This explains how BARC and Bockris results were ignored and insulted while Caltech failure and MIT fraud stand immaculate.this theory match the observation.”


    No, not at all.

  • "... and its [the 'new nuclear mechanism's] details do not cohere with each other or wit other evidence."


    Perhaps by "its," you're referring to the evidence for LENR as a non-chemical process, taken as a whole? Here I think it's important to recognize that the experimental evidence for LENR is complex and multifaceted. We should avoid assuming or requiring a single mechanism or process (although this might also be the case). There could be two or three related processes which support or compete with one another. For those who assume that LENR is not chemical, there are still the following questions that will need to be considered:

    • Which experiments are solid, and which give an indication of being liable to artifact?
    • Which observations seem intrinsically related to one another, and which look like they might be somewhat independent?
    • Are there conclusions about LENR that are sometimes forcefully asserted by proponents that are largely a matter of conjecture, personal judgment or preference?
    • Which explanations seem to have a seed of plausibility, and which seem implausible and/or hard to connect back to any of one's existing knowledge of physics?

    Obviously this is an abbreviated list.


    "... it has details not explained by any new physics hypothesis to date ..."


    An assessment of this observation is contingent upon answers to the questions above, and as one gradually forms some opinions, the situation becomes increasingly tractable.

  • I see Abd is on here now, spewing a bunch of trash about me. He and I knocked heads on Wikipedia till he got banned for 'wall-of-texting', which you have seen here. I'm not going to read his posts. If he says something in particular I should answer someone let me know please. His big kick is He-heat correlation. He never could understand the concept that correlating to a fictitious number produces fictitious correlations. Since he couldn't get past that, I never tried to do more with him.


    But for the rest of you, the big problem with 4He measurements is whether it is above background, and what background is. All the CFers discuss the average 4He concentration in air (~5 ppm), but that is *outside* air, not lab air. Lab air can have very high He conc. and the CFers need to report lab air 4He measurements that go with their CF cell measurements, but they never do. So you can't tell if it could be from a leak or not. Air inleakage is the most likely culprit, and the papers by Clarke and Oliver regarding the Arata Double-Structure Cathode detail the fact that McKubre sent him 4 Ararta cells to sample, and when he did he found varying amounts of air inleakage in all four. I.e. the implication is the they weren't properly sealed. McK, et al blame Clarke and Oliver of course.