Jed Rothwell on an Unpublished E-Cat Test Report that “Looks Like it Worked”

  • Yes the excited states might decay by other channels. But internal conversion is a relatively slow process compared to gamma decay. It is extemely improbable that internal conversion like processes can suppress gamma emission in every case. We need to look for different explanations for the absence of gammas. The obvious candidate is fragmentation.


    I'm 100 percent for fragmentation — my assumption is that fragmentation, or fragmentation together with alpha decay, produce heat in the first order when they are present, and everything else is a secondary process in such cases (although not every case).


    I would not rule out something akin to IC for secondary channels, though. The following assumptions might be sufficient: excited states are produced only rarely by the first-order process; the underlying mechanism that drives everything is a transient spike in electron charge, which, when the spike happens, saturates the local region with a huge amount of negative charge which produces an IC cross section orders of magnitude larger than it would be in the equilibrium case; it is precisely and only under such conditions that the IC-like process overwhelms other channels. Now we have secondary processes producing excited states with significant attenuation through something IC-like. Not no gammas, but not gammas commensurate with excess heat. But perhaps gammas correlated with excess heat.


    My understanding is that in regular fission, the daughters are often left in an excited state; or is this wrong?

  • WHY, if this is a nuclear process which consumes an infinitesimal amount of fuel? What kills the reaction? You mean 7 years after Dardyk was seen on "60 Minutes" world wide, nobody knows? And nobody can do this on demand? Why is THAT?


    That is a complicated question involving materials, surface conditions, contamination, loading, deloading and other factors. It resembles the questions faced by people developing transistors in early 1950s such as: Why is there such variability in output performance? Why do some devices work for years, while others fail after a few hours? Why do most devices from one batch work, while 80% to 100% of other batches from the same machine fail? To answer these questions, hundreds of researchers at AT&T and elsewhere had to spend billions of dollars (adjusted for inflation), using the best instruments then available. No such effort has been made. In fact, even the best instruments from the 1950s are not available. Only a handful of superannuated professors have been working on cold fusion for the last 20 years, and most of them have high-school science class levels of instruments.


    You cannot expect progress in cold fusion without investing lots of research dollars. Fortunately, I.H. is starting to put real money into the field.

  • My understanding is that in regular fission, the daughters are often left in an excited state; or is this wrong?


    By regulat fission I suppose you mean fission of heavy isotopes. :) I think this is correct. Heavy isotopes have far more excited states than light isotopes. We know that the neutrons emitted from actinide fission have energies of only a few MeV typical of the energies of excited states. This suggests that fission creates 2 excited daughters which successively decay by neutron emission and then by beta emission. In fact it is impossible to model a neavy fission process in which neutron emission were simultaneous with fission.


    But for LENR generally speaking we are not dealing with actinides. And anything lighter is not likely to fission at any reasonable energy with the possible exception of alpha emission. Because of the Coulomb barrier for fission / alpha emission the expected fragmentations, will be those that leave the daughters in the ground state. Hence, few gammas! :) This is why hot d-d fusion only produces 1 gamma in 10000000 events. (Another factor is spin).


    I think your conclusions generally make sense.

  • @Eric Walker

    Quote

    But the excited states that normally produce them might relax via other channels, e.g., something akin to internal conversion, when taking place in an electron-rich environment.


    A fraction of the gammas may be converted into monocinetic electrons. Internal conversion is not a problem, is it. You can see it as an internal photoelectric effect concerning a fraction of the gammas. Does it matter?

  • It's extremely urgent, IMO, that this kind of perverse cycles be interrupted, the scientific truth restored, and the public trust in the academic research, adequately protected against any possible detrimental effects of this almost unavoidable "conflict of interest".


    I will disclose to you that I have no conflicts of interest, no financial gain, and no financial loss, in this whole affair--and in fact my country of origin (U.S.) would likely be placed at a short-term disadvantage given its new-found prominence on the world energy stage with its oil fracking.


    Do you have any personal conflicts of interest (financial or scientific) with a successful roll-out of LENR on a commercial level? Would your country of origin be placed at a short-term disadvantage if LENR+ proves to be commercially viable?

  • @Jed Rothwell

    Quote

    You cannot expect progress in cold fusion without investing lots of research dollars.


    Things were already settled on 1-4 May 1989 in Baltimore: incompetence and delusion, do you remember?

  • And it is thanks to Rossi.


    Actually, the people at I.H. told me they agree with you. In a perverse way this is true. But $11 million is a heck of a price to pay, and a dangerous way to re-start the field. Rossi is a loose cannon and he may yet destroy the field in his quest for money. His lawsuit will suck away millions of dollars that might have gone to other researchers but now must be paid to lawyers instead.


    Not to invoke Goodwin's law, but a European woman I knew years ago said, "I exist thanks to Adolf Hitler, but that does not mean I should be grateful to him." Her father had been married to a woman killed in WWII. He remarried, and the couple had her. So in that sense she owed her existence to Hitler. Rossi has caused great harm, and imperiled the whole field, yet ironically he may have contributed something by reawakening interest in the field; specifically, interest in Ni-H. Some of the Japanese researchers may have been inspired by him, although I think they are loath to admit it.

  • Quote

    Eric Walker, Hermes
    Luckily the Forum puts the calorimetry aside and deals with nuclear matter. Enough with pipes, probes, dry or wet vapour. We are not plumbers but physicists and chemists.


    Well, I dunno. The successful nuclear physicists I know are as at home with fluid flow and heat transfer issues and how to measure them with precision, as they are dealing with theory and equations. Maybe you were kidding but most successful scientists, apart maybe from the most exotic cosmology and pure mathematics, are quite conversant with "pipes, probes... and vapor" as well as scientific method, controls and calibrations, theory of science and knowledge, principles of instrumentation, and much more.


    Edited to add: @Jed As for whether or not Rossi promotes the field, maybe he got more people involved in Ni-H studies. But he (and Defkalion and I suspect in the future Miley, Brillouin, Nanospire, Swartz, and others) also demonstrate and will again demonstrate how gullible investigators and librarians are in the field of LENR and how none of the results in this field should be trusted without extensive vetting including completely "indipendent" verification and duplication and publication in *major* (not LENR) peer reviewed journals. IH and Woodford could learn that lesson from the Rossi debacle they are enmeshed in.

  • IH and Woodford could learn that lesson from the Rossi debacle they are enmeshed in.


    I have never met Woodford, but the I.H. people knew a lot about Rossi. It was a calculated risk. They may not be as stupid as you imagine. I think $11 million was risking too much, but it is difficult for me to judge when such enormous sums of money are on the table.


    They are supporting many other researchers, thank goodness.

  • A fraction of the gammas may be converted into monocinetic electrons. Internal conversion is not a problem, is it. You can see it as an internal photoelectric effect concerning a fraction of the gammas. Does it matter?


    The unstated assumption is that LENR experiments suggest nuclear levels of energy production. In 1989, one of the reasons that scientists rejected the possibility of LENR ("cold fusion" back then) was that there were none of the expected gammas. (In hindsight it would be incorrect to say there are no gammas.) So anyone trying to understand LENR has to deal with the problem of missing gammas. Hermes and I were exploring one possibility, where excited levels de-excite by transferring the energy to nearby electrons. You may not share the initial assumption about nuclear levels of energy production, which is fine.


    I don't think the electrons would be mono-kinetic exactly. If we assume that only a single electron is involved, the electron would have the energy of the level that de-excited; but there are potentially many levels that can be populated in the daughters after a fission. The suggestion being explored was that if you have a short-lived concentration of electrons at the time of the de-excitation, the cross-section for having a (non-inner-shell) electron carry away the energy might increase by orders of magnitude. Now add in another possibility: that of several electrons participating. Obviously this is all speculation.

  • Well, I dunno. The successful nuclear physicists I know are as at home with fluid flow and heat transfer issues and how to measure them with precision, as they are dealing with theory and equations. Maybe you were kidding but most successful scientists, apart maybe from the most exotic cosmology and pure mathematics, are quite conversant with "pipes, probes... and vapor" as well as scientific method, controls and calibrations, theory of science and knowledge, principles of instrumentation, and much more.


    Agreed. I'm pretty sure Penon doesn't need a heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning engineer (aka technician) directing him.



    Edited to add: @Jed As for whether or not Rossi promotes the field, maybe he got more people involved in Ni-H studies.


    Glad to see everyone coming around to this. Just a couple of weeks ago I was getting some pretty sharp vibes from y'all for suggesting this. Sounds like I.H. told Jed that they agree, and so, Jed has now switched his position on it in, possibly in deference to I.H.




    But he (and Defkalion and I suspect in the future Miley, Brillouin, Nanospire, Swartz, and others) also demonstrate and will again demonstrate how gullible investigators and librarians are in the field of LENR and how none of the results in this field should be trusted without extensive vetting including completely "indipendent" verification and duplication and publication in *major* (not LENR) peer reviewed journals. IH and Woodford could learn that lesson from the Rossi debacle they are enmeshed in.


    Now, had you just stopped while you were ahead, I would have given you my first upvote.

  • Quote

    I think $11 million was risking too much, but it is difficult for me to judge when such enormous sums of money are on the table.


    It isn't that at all. What the problem is is that the vetting and diligence didn't match the investment! Couldn't they have spent as much as $100K for competent and well known physicists and engineers to make up a team and retest the ecat? Of course, Rossi would never have allowed it and that would have told them all they needed to know.


    To blow my own horn a bit, the above is basically what I told Dick Smith when he asked me about Defkalion. I suspected they had nothing and I suspected I knew how they had gotten where they were but I couldn't be sure and I couldn't tell a billionaire to forego a "reasonable" $1M investment based on my opinion and that of a few others alone. So I suggested that he ask Defkalion to provide one of their reactors (they said they had 10kW on the tabletop well tested and several copies available) and that he have a team of established scientists and engineers test it ***as a black box*** with Defkalion people present ONLY to insure that their IP was not compromised. They could not participate in furnishing instruments, power lines, or output measurement methods. Guess what. Defkalion said no. Dick Smith refused to invest and thus saved a million dollars. IH should have done the same. If they had bothered to ask any one of a number of Rossi critics and skeptics, they would have heard much the same suggestion. It's sort of obvious, isn't it? Well... perhaps not to Jim Dunn who, IIRC, was the one proposing that Smith invest blindly. I think Doug Marker (AKA DSM) did the same but to be fair, my memory of that part is hazy.


    Quote

    Now, had you just stopped while you were ahead, I would have given you my first upvote

    That's nice but perhaps, that is not why I am here, to get upvotes.

  • Ascoli65: Google doesn't provide me a translation of "whacky".


    Check a dictionary or thesaurus. Preposterous, crazy, loony, that sort of thing.


    I followed your advice, and I found this:


    Quote


    But checking another dictionary I found this:

    Quote

    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Whacky
    Whacky
    Similar to wacky, except to emphasis "whack". (the sound you hear when something is struck with a long flat board), Meaning that something is stupid and should be struck with a long flat board or something else worthy of inflicting damage.


    So, the extra "h" provides to the word a particular taste, the usual that you have habit to use with anyone disagrees with you.


    The rest of your comment is conform to this attitude of you. Your scope is only to polemize and in order to do that you started quoting my old comments on ecn, giving them your own interpretations, mostly divergent from my intent. I don't think that anyone here cares of what I said somewhere else. I'm not a protagonist of the facts we are commenting here, I'm just an observer. So, I deem quite useless to reply specifically to your points. The best I can do is to list here below the address of the 5 comments on ecn from where you extracted the quotations of mine, so that each one, if any, interested in them can forms his own opinion, without relying on your judgements.


    (1) July 23, 2014, http://ecatnews.com/?p=2660&cpage=19#comment-69718 @ popeye,
    (2) July 22, 2014, http://ecatnews.com/?p=2660&cpage=19#comment-69658 @ John Milstone,
    (3) July 21, 2014, http://ecatnews.com/?p=2660&cpage=19#comment-69554 @ John Milstone, popeye,
    (4) September 18, 2015, http://ecatnews.com/?p=2676&cpage=6#comment-120897 @ Thomas Clarke, [not more achievable on the web]
    (5) June 19, 2016, http://ecatnews.com/?p=2686&cpage=9#comment-145860 @ Mary Yugo,


    The comment (4) is no more available on the web, because nearly all the comments of that thread disappeared suddenly last December ( http://ecatnews.com/?p=2686&cpage=5#comment-143374 ), so I repost its content here below:



    As for the "oil prices" issue, mentioned in a your own quote, you know that it is not a conjecture of mine, but I always referred to these two mails of JR on Vortex:
    (a) "http://www.mail-archive.com/vortex-[email protected]/msg60675.html" - 07 Jan 2012
    (b) "http://www.mail-archive.com/vortex-[email protected]/msg90155.html" - 09 Feb 2014


    So, I let the author of these 2 mail, who already liked your comment, to explain you their real meaning.


    The same for the aphorism of Stan Szpak that I found on this comment of him:
    (c) "http://www.mail-archive.com/vortex-[email protected]/msg97821.html"


    And finally, on this last point, I would like not to be misunderstood:

    Quote

    and if I understand you, to vindicate Churchill's prediction.


    No, you didn't understand, maybe due to my English.


    I heard about the Churchill article on Popular Mechanics, thanks to a JR mail on Vortex (d), and I found it one of the most important and illuminating document I ever read. At that time, only few people in the world could have imagined a future possible nuclear revolution. Churchill was one of them, because he had already been a main protagonist of the previous energetic revolution, from coal to oil.


    I consider his article a sort of manifest of the nuclear era, for the clarity of his vision expressed in the first part. But it is far from being an appeal to do that. At the end of his article, Churchill warns about the risk of this development. He write: "After all, this material progress, in itself so splendid, does not meet any of the real needs of the human race. [...] What is the purpose of life? Whither are we going?’ No material progress, even though it takes shapes we cannot now conceive, or however it may expand the faculties of man, can bring comfort to his soul. [...] And with the hopes and powers will come dangers out of all proportion to the growth of man’s intellect, to the strength of his character or to the efficacy of his institutions." These are very wise words.


    I like to mention the Churchill article, because it provides a time reference to check the status of the missed nuclear revolution. He wrote the article in 1931, and put a time limit of 50 years, within 1981, for finding the way to exploit the fusion energy for civil use. Now we are 35 years in delay in realizing this energy supplying system, but we are in schedule in increasing the energy consumption. Too bad.


    I think that that article can be, even today, a good source of meditation for the decision makers, and maybe of inspiration for the people at DoD which are preparing the text for the September briefing.


    (d) "http://www.mail-archive.com/vortex-[email protected]/msg106340.html"

  • Hermes and I were exploring one possibility, where excited levels de-excite by transferring the energy to nearby electrons.


    This should be discussed in a technical thread...


    My first thoughts how the energy output of LENR is transported was similar. But we are talking of MeV up to 10 MeV per Alpha. With Alpha we must not guess. They bang the lattice and destroy everything leaving a big crater behind.
    If energy energy levels of MeV's must be dissipated by electrons, then they must be massively coupled. Single electron energy transfers would result in gammas and X-rays. If one could show that a plane in a lattice is reacting coordinated then the energy/electron (1000-10000 taking part) would be much lower, but it still would be way to high.
    My current best guess how the energy is transferred is pure single pulse EMF, like in a collapsing star. The question is, how the field is shaped. Radial isotropic, planar, or like in a black hole polar?