[SPLIT]Older LENR Experiments were bad, good... in general

  • Cheers Kirk


    Regarding special states: So the recombination that normally takes place in the headspace is driven by a Pd catalyst with a large surface area. Do you suggest that basically this same catalysation can also take place on the surface of the Pd electrode, or is it more complex than that?

  • quoted by Abd wrote:

    I was addressing Mr. Huxley's comments, not yours. He may be under the impression that researchers claim excess heat with only 1% apparent excess heat. I do not know of any examples of that in the literature.


    To knock this on the head, though I've said it before, I was saying correctly that a 1% calibration error could result in 100X excess heat (above chemical). More generally that when arguing how large such an affect is you need to compare apples with apples, not apples with pears.

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    The effect is expected to be very sensitive to isotope effects. The viscosity of heavy water is quite different from that of light water. the chemical bonds made by D are stronger than those made by H. The will impact the adhesiveness of the surface to bubbles. Likewise, using differernt metals and electrolyte makeup will tinker with the relevant parameters needed to be achieved by the special active state. The length of time required to form it suggests it may be quite unstable (non-co-dep processes). Altering the surface roughness would in principle also foster bubble adhesion. The ultimate of that would be dendritic structures or nanocrystalline ones. Thus it is quite reasonable to assume light hydrogen can produce the effect under some conditions (as yet to be defined).


    Yes. Well H2/D2 variation has never been a strong argument for LENR because the physical properties are so different and the experiments are of a type that would be dependent on those physical properties...


    Generalising, the idea that metal surface recombination is variable and affects calorimetric results can perhaps (in principle) explain all the electrolysis LENR results, but not the "wire in H2/D2 gas" ones. Though many of those rely on isoperibolic calorimetry that would also be sensitive to surface changes...

  • suppose a 1% cal error results in measured COP=1.01 with 100W in, or 1W excess power. Run expt for 1 year and you get 10MJ excess heat which is maybe well above chemical.


    A contrived example but you can see the point? Both excess heat above chemical and fractional excess power are relevant to evaluating LENR experiments: you need both to claim heat evidence for some nuclear effect.

  • Regarding special states: So the recombination that normally takes place in the headspace is driven by a Pd catalyst with a large surface area. Do you suggest that basically this same catalysation can also take place on the surface of the Pd electrode, or is it more complex than that?


    Not really. That's about right. There are wrinkles of course. One does need to modify the surface since the normal occurance is that no excess heat signal is observed. And once the SAS is obtained, it is easily destroyed, I pointed out anodic stripping seemed to be a good candidate in one of my papers.


    The key point is that the things you would do to optimize the Flesichmann-Pons-Hawkins Effect (as I called it (meaning the non-nuclear mech) are not the same ones you would tinker with to optimze a nuclear one.


    Also, testing the idea is more tricky than one would think. But placing extra energy in one region or the other might show something...like with a laser or ultrasound setup maybe...;-)


    end of day...see y'all tomorrow, work allowing...

  • @THH I agree its a bit contrived as I've never heard of a reported LENR experiment that has similar parameters, but yes, I do see your point now.


    @KS Thanks for the explanations. Things are much clearer to me now. Whoever said it has similarities to LENR (the LENR Hypothesis?!), has a good point, in my opinion.

  • I was addressing Mr. Huxley's comments, not yours. He may be under the impression that researchers claim excess heat with only 1% apparent excess heat. I do not know of any examples of that in the literature.


    Some of the noise may be reduced here if you stop assuming that THH is terminally clueless.


    THAT's what the man said! He said that a 1% error might add up to any amount of false excess heat.


    Leakage with the Miles technique produces an answer hundreds or thousands of times too large. It is immediately apparent, and no one would mistake it for helium from the experiment.


    This was an unsatisfactory answer. THH comes back with the answer I would expect. Jed assumes a large leak such that the helium would equilibrate at ambient or at least rise far toward it.


    Miles, Storms and other have said that leaks are nearly always large. You don't get a leak so small and so slow that it would take years to reach atmospheric concentration. Except with helium leaking through glass.

  • To knock this on the head, though I've said it before, I was saying correctly that a 1% calibration error could result in 100X excess heat (above chemical).


    No, you are not saying that correctly. Because no researcher would claim that 1% excess is real. That is in the noise. It is not significant.


    Yes, it is true that if the researchers did not understand the concept of "noise" what you say might happen, but they do so it doesn't.


    We should discuss what actually happens and what is published, not an imaginary version of events. Anyone can come up with a long list of problems that might happen except that we know they do not happen. What's the point?

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    THAT's what the man said! He said that a 1% error might add up to any amount of false excess heat.


    Perhaps my explanation for zeuss46 will help?


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    suppose a 1% cal error results in measured COP=1.01 with 100W in, or 1W excess power. Run expt for 1 year and you get 10MJ excess heat which is maybe well above chemical.A contrived example but you can see the point? Both excess heat above chemical and fractional excess power are relevant to evaluating LENR experiments: you need both to claim heat evidence for some nuclear effect.


    To see why I said this you need to go back to your remark about excess heat and the context in which you made it!

  • Great. Thanks, Kirk. This matches what you have written before, and now it can be examined systematically.


    After many, many hours of running with a regular F&P setup, or almost immediately with a "Szpak" co-deposition process, the electrode surface develops a 'special active state' that allows for the chemical recombination of hydrogen and oxygen (from bubbles) on the electrode surface.


    Notice: this is a claimed anomaly, something unexpected. Kirk is positing a new, unknown effect to explain excess heat results, the difference being that this is supposedly non-nuclear in nature.


    What is unusual about this? Well, recombination catalysts like platihum and palladium don't work when wet. That problem is what caused the SRI fatality, their recombination catalyst got wet. so what Shanahan is proposing is an unknown behavior.


    An oxygen bubble that reaches the cathode surface of a loaded cathode, if somehow recombination is catalyzed, would "burn." Slowly, though. Only if the bubble is an explosive mixture (or at least a serious mixture) might it ignite. Such ignitions would be readily visible. They would give off light. Meanwhile, if this cell is being electrolyzed, hydrogen gas is constantly being evolved on the surface, and this will create a current away from the cathode. I would expect very little recombination. How much is actually observed?


    Miles, as just one example, measured the gas evolution, it was a critical part of his experiment. Was it short of expectation or did it match that expected from the large bulk of bubbles rising to the surface and leaving the cell through his bubbler? Do we think that elecrrochemists would overlook substantial missing gas?


    Sure, in closed cells there would be another effect, that Shanahan will come to.


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    This reduces the exiting gas quantity in an open cell, but may increase entrained electrolyte microdroplets due to the observation that there are now 'micro-explosions' occurring at the electrode in a fashion similar to depth charges.


    Yeah, depth charges, which, of course, blow a lot of water into the air. Okay, what does an electrolytic cell look like? Are there explosions blowing water up? Is there evidence for "micro-explosions"? Shanahan makes some up, by taking facts utterly out of context.


    We are talking about an extremely small amount of gas burning, but generally not an explosive mixture. To be an explosive mixture, the bubbles must meet and merge before rising to the surface and escaping. (He gets to that, but it is mostly hand-waving.)


    Entrainment in open cells would produce a very observable effect, a build-up of cell salts on surfaces near the exit. The flow rate is not high in these experiments. It's not like, say, the Parkhomov reactor where water was actively boiling and water definitely was leaving the water bath without being evaporated (it was seen). The exit path in these cells tends to be long, with plenty of opportunity for any entrained water to contact the wall and run back into the cell.


    Anyone doing this work could check for missing water. Trivial to do. Now, the explanation gets more complicated in a closed cell.


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    In a closed cell, this reduces the amount of reaction at the gas space catalyst and places it at the electrode instead. The special active state clearly fosters said recombination, perhaps by causing H2 bubbles to adhere more strongly to the electrode so that they can coalese with impinging O2 bubbles OR by fostering adhesion of impinging O2 bubbles which then migrate to an H2 bubble and coalese.


    As I have mentioned, I don't see any "special active state." A palladium cathode would also catatlyze recombination, but Shanahan can wave that away. The "special effect" doesn't occur at the anode. Or maybe it does. If it happens, yes, the location of heat generated would change, to the extent that it happens. How much effect will that have? It depends on the kind of calorimetry being used. This would have no effect on a Seebeck. It should have no effect on flow calorimetry, which is, at least theoretically, independent of where in the cell heat is generated. (I would hope it would be calibrated with multiple heat locations.) It could affect some kinds of calorimetry depending on where temperature is measured.


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    The metal surface then catalyzes H2 + O2 recombination (just as the recombination catalyst does). These microexplosions produce shock waves which can be picked up by a piezoelectric transducer, and can cause physical damage to the electrode or its support at the point of explosion.


    Ah. Piezo electric transducer. Yes, SPAWAR ran an experiment with a piezoelectric transducer as their cathode substrate, where it would pick up minute shock wavers from a reaction in or on the cathode. They found pressure waves. Tiny. Tap the cell, I'm sure, and that oscilloscope would go off scale. Yet Shanahan has these as being violent. What do we have here? The image is of a bubble contacting a surface that allegedly catalyzes recombination, and this bubble must be an explosive mixture. The vast majority of bubbles would not be. Most bubbles will rise to the surface and mix there, not in the electrolyte. Yes, some bubbles may coalesce, but there is no force promoting coalescence to an explosive mixture, and the bubbles are physically segregated in the cell. I.e., large bubbles will rise immediately to the surface. A few small bubbles may circulated in the flow caused by gas evolution (often these cells are not stirred except for that). The gas evolution will militate against mixing, but, yes, some might still occur.


    Kirk then wants to explain "physical damage" to the cathode. He has in mind the little "volcanoes," I call them, where it appears that palladium melted and flowed out. So, in his story, this bubble -- remember, it must be tiny -- packs enough explosive power and will generate enough heat to melt a patch of palladium. Under water and with the palladium being a thermally conductive mass.


    (continued)

  • (continued)


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    Because of the difference in heat capture efficiency in the cell, the heat that at one time formed in the lower efficeincy region is now registered in the calorimeter output at a higher efficiency.


    Huh? He is proposing a design where heat in the cell proper is communicated to the calorimetry more efficiently than heat in the recombination catalyst. Sounds like a lousy design to me. Who used that? If the experiment is inside a Seebeck calorimeter, any heat generation in the entire cell is measured the same. Remember, there are many different methods of calorimetry used. How would this be systematic across many methods? And those explosions simply do not occur, not as he describes them. The would be obvious. If they can damage the cathode, and Shanahan also has them blowing plastic off the back side of CR-39 chips, which are tough polycarbonate plastic, they would be audible. "Hey, did the cell just go BANG!" (Flurry of activity as half the researchers rush out of the room and the other half rush to look!)


    However, Kirk's recombination story does not need to involve explosions to affect calorimetry.


    What we know is that ordinarily recombination is not a major phenomenon in electroytic cells, which show high efficiency converting water to the gases. Recombination would reduce that efficiency, it would be known. But Shanahan is correct in a way. Cold fusion is not an ordinary phenomenon. So it is possible to posit an unknown recombination phenomenon to explain the anomalous heat. Logically, as far as it goes, that's reasonable.


    However, Miles, as an example, was monitoring gas evolution in his cells, he had to, because he need to know gas volume. Did he use electrolysis current, integrated, and bubbler volume to cross-confirm this? I think he did. Certainly he should have. I'm not looking right now, and I want to encourage others to read the literature, I did this kind of study for years. Don't just trust what some random Joe says on the internet, or what is in a tertiary or even a secondary source, but actually read the sources.


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    Because the calibration 'bumps up' the registered signal to equate it to 'power out', the more strongly measured signal is registed with a slight 'magnification' in the output. Thus, not only is more heat attributed to output, it is now incorrectly 'bumped up' using the calibration constants derived from a different steady state configuration. The more efficient the calorimeter over all, the smaller the effect.


    Right. Now, how large is the effect from moving heat from the recombiner to the cathode (or anode)? In an open cell, recombination will generate a 100% error, i.e,. the recombination heat will appear as part of cell heating and thus likely as excess energy. However, in a closed cell, only a portion of this effect could appear, based on some fractional difference in efficiency. Thinking about it, I don't get it. It's actually more complicated than Shanahan presents. I would think that if recombiner heat were not efficiently captured, the cell would show, prior to any anomaly, negative heat.


    So Shanahan is asserting an unexpected effect, a recombination anomaly. It is unexplained. He waves away hydrogen controls with non-quantitative arguments about bond strength and bubble behavior. Maybe. He then waves away the confirmation of excess heat through helium measurement. Heat/helium has been confirmed with various methods of calorimetry. Somehow, metamagically, the error from recombination in open cells (which could be considerable) still produces the same result (heat/He ratio) as in closed cells (where it would vary with calorimetry details, sensitivity to heat location)?


    This is the bottom line, and it's obvious: Shanahan hasn't inspired anyone with his theory, enough for them to take the time to directly test for it and publish. He is basically a laughing-stock in the field. I take no joy in that, even though Shanahan has often been a jerk, refusing to respect attempts to understand him, attacking critics as biased. Being rejected for many years can do that to one.


    It is not simple to test his theory unless one has set up the FP Heat Effect. Then it could be fairly simple, and I'll suggest it if there is an opportunity; I'm not sure it's worth making a fuss yet, but I want to see the responses of two writers here: THH and Jed. Jed knows the literature better than almost anyone else. He knows the varieties of calorimetry used, in depth. And THH has his head screwed on mostly straight and may have substantial knowledge to boot. If THH can explain Shanahan's theory to me such that I'm more inclined to take it seriously, well, I'll take it more seriously!


    Otherwise, Kirk, with your attempt to reject every result in the field, you went a bridge to far. Nobody with any power is listening, other than a few who occasionally participate here. Your objections are not the obstacle cold fusion faces. You are basically irrelevant, as you have been. You could change that, and you have been invited to, but you prefer to continue sputtering and spouting. That does no more good than cold fusion supporters sputtering and spouting about the rejection cascade.


    (We need to acknowledge it, but if we blame it and don't take responsibility, we will remain powerless.)

  • THAT's what the man said! He said that a 1% error might add up to any amount of false excess heat.


    Abd Ul-Rahman Lomax wrote:


    THAT's what the man said! He said that a 1% error might add up to any amount of false excess heat.


    Jed, you could get much faster at noticing the problem. What he wrote was true. It could, given enough time, under some conditions.


    He did not say "researchers claim excess heat when it is only 1% (of input power). And so the answer is not, no, you are an ignorant idiot, but yes, and now what does this have to do with real results? Anything? Are we looking at a specific experiment?


    The real point is that a relatively small error in measuring energy could possibly accumulate in these experiments. And we would need to get much further into details than had happened. The question is a generic skeptical objection, and if we care about education, we must stop treating these with contempt.

  • The point is that to claim that an effect is strong you need both COP - 1 >> fractional power error and energy >> max chemical energy - over the same period!


    Just one will not do.


    There is another approach that might be available. Measure the ash and correlate, across multiple experiments. Correlation can punch through a lot of noise, if applied properly. Improperly, it can see a signal where there is none, just random noise, but that signal will generally disappear if the measurements are repeated. And then there are systematic effects. Correlation can reveal systematic effects that are quite small.


    What is highly interesting is when correlation reveals a systematic effect that matches some simple theory. Correlation can pull messages out of noise, and if those messages are coherent, it can be highly meaningful. Key is repeatability.


    One of the things that was not done with early cold fusion work was to correlate tritium with heat. Often we saw reports that tritium was found, but it "was not commensurate with heat." That meant that the tritium did not match results expected if the reaction were d+d -> T + p, and were, in fact, not even close.


    Wrong question! Were heat and tritium correlated? Look for work on that, it's rare. I've only found one measurement where both heat and quantitative tritium was reported. Mostly, even when tritium was found when heat was being measured, the levels were not reported. So we cannot see the variability. Theory continued to dominate the work.


    Storms thinks that tritium varies with the H/D ratio, which is plausible. However, his theory predicts loads of tritium if one starts out with 1:1 H/D though it is complicated by the preference for hydrogen to be evolved and deuterium to enter the palladium, if I have that right. With a given H/D ratio, though, I would expect tritium to be well correlated with heat. Just at maybe a million times down from helium with 99.9% D2O. If that were shown, and clearly, it would also be direct evidence of a nuclear reaction without giving much information as to the nature of the reaction.


    Correlation is cool.