As always, thanks for your terrier-like pursuit of technical data. I was not aware of that image: you are right, it is revealing.
In the interests of accuracy I'm going to disagree with part of what you say, though not the overall conclusion.
If that picture is genuinely one of the December test then I think we can definitively answer Jed's point about not knowing anything wrong with that test, and even say what the issue was.
Those, like Alan, who believe Rossi's stuff sometimes work might perhaps consider that Rossi's innacuracy in doing experiments is so high that he could never possibly know himself the difference between working and not working. There is juts no evidence out there his stuff is more than parlour tricks of a specifically scientific variety.
The Ferrara tests where document as two significant test runs: December and March. They are different (in lots of ways). Like any magician, Rossi has a habit of ringing the changes.
In the December test run the report says:
The E-Cat HT-type device in this experiment was a cylinder having a silicon nitride ceramic
outer shell, 33 cm in length, and 10 cm in diameter. A second cylinder made of a different ceramic
material (corundum) was located within the shell, and housed three delta-connected spiral-wire
resistor coils. Resistors were laid out horizontally, parallel to and equidistant from the cylinder
axis, and were as long as the cylinder itself. They were fed by a TRIAC power regulator device
which interrupted each phase periodically, in order to modulate power input with an industrial
trade secret waveform. This procedure, needed to properly activate the E-Cat HT charge, had no
bearing whatsoever on the power consumption of the device, which remained constant throughout
Electrical measurements were performed by a PCE-830 Power and Harmonics Analyzer by PCE
Instruments with a nominal accuracy of 1%. This instrument continuously monitors on an LCD
display the values of instantaneous electrical power (active, reactive, and apparent) supplied to the
resistor coils, as well as energy consumption expressed in kWh.
Of these parameters, only the last one was of interest for the purposes of the test, which was
designed to evaluate the ratio of thermal energy produced by the E-Cat HT to electrical power
consumption for the number of hours subject to evaluation. The instrument was connected
directly to the E-Cat HT cables by means of three clamp ammeters, and three probes for voltage
The instruments used to acquire experimental data were at all times active for the entire 96 hours
of the test, and consisted of an IR thermography camera to measure the E-Cat HT’s surface
temperature, and a wide band-pass power quality monitor measuring the electrical quantities on
each of the three phases, to record the power absorbed by the resistor coils.
So, from the report: the entire calculation comes from the (integrated power) WH measurement from the PCE-830. This is then divided by 96 (the test time in hours) to get the inferred power consumption.
They know power was output at the same rate throughout the experiment because the output was shown there the whole time from the 1s per frame time lapse photography.
This test has TCs for temperature so I'm not inclined to think there are big errors on the output side.
You might think that because (to get a constant output) a constant input is needed, and anyway if not constant the total energy in vs total energy out is all that matters, this instrumentation is pretty good. That, I'm sure, is what Jed thought.
The problem is that those checking this experiment were not experts in AC power measurement - or if they were trusted Rossi to have a vaguely sane setup.
The photo shows Rossi's setup to be not vaguely sane. The negative PFSigma and PWSigma show that at the time this photo was taken the power was drawn from two phases with reversed clamps (it would not be reasonable for the control box in reality to source power back into the mains supply).
The positive WH indication shows that for some of the test power must go through a phase with a correct polarity clamp.
The report notes that the control box switches power in some proprietary (= don't ask questions about it) way, but that the total power remains the same. That may be true, but because of the partly reversed clamps that photo is absolute proof that the WH indication (the only one used by the experiment checkers) will read lower than expected.
So we have positively identified a Rossi-esque false positive for this (December Ferrara) experiment.
Some details (a little speculative, but I think the logic is solid):
No-one needs to change the clamps. In the photo phase 31 has a maximum real power of < 38W (however measured + or -). Phases 12 & 23 have a negative real power (both with reversed clamps) because the total negative power can only be obtained at the stated total negative PF if both phases contribute. Note that the average power-weighted PF over all phases is -0.48, but the max (absolute value) PF for any phase is -0.52, which means both of the high actual power PFs must be close to -0.5, and therefore also the 31 phase PF must be positive (clamp the correct way round).
The control box can deliver a constant large power with a measured much lower WH energy, by switching between power through 12 & 23 (as here) and power through 31. All that is needed to get the stated 360W average is for switching to have the correct duty cycle to make the positive 31 contribution slightly more than the negative 12 & 32. Note that the voltages are weird: this is not mains line voltage: I guess measurements were done on the black box output.
Speculative notes on the March Test
The March test was different in quite a number of ways, and (typically for Rossi) exhibited a much lower COP. My guess (very speculative) is that the absent testers (only Levi was present) noticed some anomalies in the power measurements, or at least raised questions of a possible loophole. Therefore it was decided to redo the test closing those loopholes. (Wisely, given we have positive evidence of such an error). From the March test part of the Ferrara report (linked above):
The clamp ammeters were connected upstream from the control box to ensure the trustworthiness of the measurements performed, and to produce a nonfalsifiable document (the video recording) of the measurements themselves.
Which opens the possibility that the voltage measurement and current measurements in the December test were from different sides of the control box? They clearly did not trust the readings.
What is notable is the COPs obtained:
Pout = 2034, Pin = 360, COP=5.6
Note that a Pin of 2034 would lead to COP=1, and this is plausible given the QSigma of 1.96kVAR (we cannot trust power calculation from phases and therefore also cannot trust the stated PF).
Weird switched system, with duty cycle of 35%.
Interesting that if the system were not switched the COP would be 1. Not enough data on this system however to be clear what is the false positive mechanism. Notice however that for these tests, where there was at least some level of external supervision, Rossi completely changed his setup - moving to a more complex system - more difficult to analyse - but with lower performance, for his repeat test. That is very suspicious!