NASA partners with Global Energy Corporation to develop 10kW Hybrid Reactor Generator

  • Shane D.


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    We frown on politics, and religion discussions here. For good reason, as they are extremely counter productive for a dedicated science forum.

    I read his link and hoped no one else would notice, but you did.

    No more of that SOT. Another offense, and it is off to ECW for you.


    Hey, I took down the link. FYI: a polite request works as well as threat. I can delete the entire post if you prefer, just say so. It was a joke, not a political statement.


    Seiber Troutman

    Please delete the link from your reply please. Thank you.

  • Back in the 1990s, I was laughing at all these claims of cold fusion because as a physicist by training "I know this is impossible therefore they must be wrong".


    This is the key point of 100 years miss-perception of (nuclear & particle) physics theory.


    To get a chance for a phd you have to finish (at ETH Switzerland) the master with a 6 (1 in german). To get there you fill your head with hundreds of half knitted concepts they (the masters of the physics temple) usually call theory... I know not a single "standard model" formula that gives us insight into the structure of matter. But I know many, that just work for some cases people of nuke engineering once were interested for fine tuning nukes or for half guessing the process of fission plants. But I would call this stuff just engineering level...


    Why do phd students no longer ask questions? The answer is simple. Either you believe or you die out of the system. Nuclear physics lost the path of science a long time ago. Where science means to ask every day, anew the question: Are my assumptions/theories correct? Einstein new that his theory (ART) was bogus.


    Today we know why. But, as the roman church did keep the power of the mind for centuries, finally the truth must be found by us (heretics), the independent member of science.


  • SOT,


    Good on you. Now stop being so sensitive. Do you really think I would be so heartless as to ship a skeptic off to ECW?

  • Cold fusion literature is full of crap articles but I was surprised to see that many of them had some merit.

    That is normal. In most emergent fields of science, most of the papers are junk. Decades later when the field is well understood, more of the papers are technically correct. I described this at the end of this essay, with a wonderful example from the book "The Double Helix:"


    http://lenr-canr.org/acrobat/RothwellJlessonsfro.pdf


    I think there is a lot of junk at first because:


    1. It takes time for people to sort out what is true from what is false.


    2. New science tends to attract eccentric people. That is not to suggest that everyone is eccentric!


    3. In the early stages of a field, not many people want to participate. Conference are open to anyone, including people who are not skilled or qualified. The same thing happens in the early stages of product development. For example, when microcomputers (personal computers) became popular in the early 1980s, many people jumped into the business, including people with little skill in hardware or software. Many badly designed computers and programs were sold. As the industry matured, quality standards improved.

  • I met him [Fleischmann] many times, and worked with him for years. I have many letters from him, and I just uploaded 470 pages of them.


    I know all that. But the question is *when*. We're talking about his confidence on March 23.


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    So, what are you going to believe? A press release written by someone at the university who never heard of cold fusion until a few days earlier, or dozens of comments in writing by Fleischmann himself? Which do you consider a more reliable source of information?


    I do not believe the university press release would misquote Fleischmann, and I do not think the video of the news conference on-line has been faked. I transcribed the part I quoted yesterday. In any case, you haven't shown me any of his writings that contradict what I quoted.


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    Louis Reed wrote [quoting Fleischmann]: "It does seem that there is here a possibility of realizing sustained fusion with a relatively inexpensive device, which could be brought to some sort of successful conclusion fairly early on."


    Definitely true. Especially compared to plasma fusion. They have been working on that for 60 years, and spending billions, without much progress. If cold fusion had gotten 1% that money, it might have succeeded by now.

    But he said "fairly early on" without qualifications. The experiment is at least 10,000 smaller in scale, so why would they need 1% of the money. Fleischmann talked about a few million and got tens of millions in France, and according to Storms about $500M had been spent on cold fusion research by 2012, which is not that far from 1% of what has been spent on hot fusion. It seems like about 100 times more than should be needed to get proof-of-principle accepted by the mainstream.

  • Louis Reed wrote: You haven't cited any specific examples


    If you do not believe Schwinger and Fleischmann, I do not think you will believe any of the others.


    You haven't quoted either Schwinger or Fleischmann in the 5 weeks after the press conference.


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    In any case, you can find them yourself easily enough. I do not need to spoon-feed you this information.


    I knew this was coming. This spoon-feeding line is your last refuge when you can't back up what you say. But I do need to be spoon-fed, because I've looked, and the quotations from Fleischmann on March 23 that I found demonstrate confidence, not certainty that his work would be dismissed. And I suspect you'd like nothing better than to spoon-feed me, if only you had something to feed.


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    Louis Reed wrote: Finally, Schwinger's first paper was submitted in August 1989, well after the honeymoon period I'm talking about.


    Are you suggesting that Schwinger should have written a paper during this imaginary "Honeymoon" period?


    No. How do you get that from what I wrote?? I'm saying that the reception his papers got in August say nothing about the reception cold fusion got in the first 5 weeks after the press conference.

  • How long was this honeymoon? Three months? Six months?


    You're not seriously asking that?! Just for fun I cut and pasted some 20 of the times I specified the time period in question (over the last week or so):


    in the weeks after the P&F news conference.


    in the weeks after the press conference.


    but not in that first month. The attacks and all your citations happened after the Lewis/Koonin papers at the APS meeting 5 weeks after the press conference.


    The enthusiastic reception that Pons and Fleischmann received in the first weeks after their press conference shows that the mainstream was open to the possibility of cold fusion


    What part of the “first few weeks after the press conference” don’t you get?


    his account of the first weeks after the press conference


    And Congress opened a hearing on P&F in those early weeks


    there were a few weeks when the possibility of cold fusion was enthusiastically welcomed.


    why did this short-sightedness and avarice take 5 weeks to kick in


    That article was published on May 1, 5 weeks after the press conference, and importantly *after* the MIT scientists had a look at P&F paper.


    And this political influence was absent for the first few weeks


    The one I cited was published 5 weeks later, not the day after.


    Again, these quotes came *after* the honeymoon period. I repeat, what part of "the first few weeks after the press conference" don't you get?


    What matters is the sentiment was very clearly positive and optimistic in the first weeks after the press conference


    we agree that it was very clearly negative and pessimistic about 5 weeks later.


    cold fusion was welcomed with enthusiasm for a few weeks in 1989


    This does not inform the question the prevailing sentiment during the weeks after the press conference.


    the world was *not* skeptical enough of cold fusion for those first few weeks.


    I have read many accounts of the first few weeks after the press conference


    honeymoon period, which was until the evidence was examined, something like the first 3 - 5 weeks after the press conference.



    It actually explains a lot if the reading and comprehension ability displayed here is representative..

  • Jumping to conclusions or reaching any kind of judgement in a few months is absurd.


    The length of time you think they need does not affect the point. The first weeks showed that mainstream science was open to the possibility of cold fusion, and yet 30 years has not been enough to convince them it's real.


    Moreover, no one objected when Duncan spent 3 days at Energetics and concluded cold fusion was real, or when Gerischer spent a week at a conference, and admitted "overwhelming indications" of cold fusion.


    Also you just argued that the Lewis results represented some of the best proof that cold fusion is real, and those results were obtained in one month.


    Finally, high temperature superconductivity is a subtler effect than a bench top heat source with an energy density a million times higher than chemical, and it was accepted almost immediately, even though it was introduced cautiously with the title "Possible High Tc Superconductivity in the Ba-La-Cu-O System" in a relatively obscure German physics journal.


    They were cautious because they hadn't observed the Meissner effect yet. Even so, it never really encountered serious skepticism, and within a month, labs in the US and Japan were replicating, and within 2 months, new materials were discovered. It hit the big time when the temperature exceeded that of liquid nitrogen, and then the "woodstock of physics" happened at the 1987 March APS meeting.


    One account sounds rather like Storms description of cold fusion: "As all this publicity was occurring, many solid-state physicists, chemists, material scientists, and others at universities, and government and industrial laboratories were abruptly postponing whatever research projects they were engaged in to work on new superconducting materials. For scientists it was an opportunity of a lifetime, a chance to be part of a major technological breakthrough." (from The New Superconductors, Springer).


    Recall Storms: "Excitement was building as more people heard about the “discovery” and wanted to get in on the action. If real, such an important discovery hardly ever happens during a scientist’s career, …"


    What followed in the two cases could not be more different, with HTSC being fully accepted and with hundreds of thousands of papers published in the very best journals over the next decades. The difference was not that in 1987 scientists had integrity and open minds and in 1989 tens of thousands of scientists suddenly became closed-minded, corrupt and self-serving. The difference was in the evidence.


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    No experienced electrochemist did that. Hundreds of top electrochemists replicated this experiment, but none of them did it in a few months.

    There were positive claims in the early months, including from Bockris, who was certainly a top electrochemist.


    Plus the 3 experiments you said represent some of the best proof for cold fusion were done on that time scale. And it doesn't take more than a day to evaluate compelling evidence.


    It's certainly easy to conceive of an experiment that could not be dismissed, and that would convince the world overnight, provided it was repeatable enough that it could be performed for any audience. As you once wrote: "... It is utterly impossible to fake palpable heat.... I do not think any scientist will dispute this. ...An object that remains palpably warmer than the surroundings is as convincing as anything can be..." and "Gene Mallove and I used to say that if we only had a demonstration kit we could persuade the world that cold fusion is real." Unfortunately, the claims don't stand out like that and that leaves room for skepticism.


    But in any case, the DOE panel continued to examine the evidence for 6 months, and then another DOE panel did so again 15 years later, and still the claims were rejected.


    And finally, the rejection after 5 weeks was not only based on experiments done after the press conference, but also on the evidence presented by P&F, which had been gathered over 5 years.

  • This imaginary honeymoon you have invented would be nothing more than absurd rush to judgement regarding experiments that had not begun when the honeymoon ended.


    Yes, exactly. It was an absurd rush to judgement based only on the unverified and undescribed claims of P&F. But that rush to judgement would never have happened if the mainstream had been politically or selfishly or corruptly against cold fusion.

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    Louis Reed wrote: "than to consider a much longer list of Nobel laureates including Gell-Mann, Glashow, Weinberg, Lederman, Seaborg, Mather, Riess, and Schmidt delusional,"


    I talked to some of those people, and I read their comments and books. They do not know shit from Shinola about cold fusion.


    I know you dismiss them. But why would you think that I should regard a single bitter, nearly inactive laureate as infallible, when you so easily dismiss a dozen (then) active laureates?


    And I suspect they knew exactly as much about cold fusion as necessary to dismiss it with confidence. Namely, what phenomenon was claimed and how unlikely it was, what would be possible were it valid, that commensurate reaction products are not seen, that the size of the claimed heat effects were not significantly different from the size of artifacts or calibration shifts or input heat in such experiments, and that they fell far short of what would be expected after a year of protracted efforts (let alone 30) by dozens or hundreds of scientists.


    One doesn't need to know all the details about a field to be skeptical. One doesn't have to read every homeopathy paper, attend every astrology conference, or pray with creationists to be skeptical of all three.


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    Having a Nobel does not give you magic ESP such that you can pontificate about an experiment you know nothing about and magically get the right answer.


    No, but having a Nobel indicates that you would be very unlikely to do that. Having a Nobel prize means one is the sort of person who takes evidence seriously, who is very good at recognizing good and bad evidence and focusing their attention in the most promising direction. Of course they don't always get it right (as with Schwinger and Josephson), but Nobel laureates are the sort that would not consider Rossi's evidence to be compelling. Those guys have Nobel prizes. You thought Rossi had the best evidence for cold fusion.


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    As for Huizenga, I suggest you read his book with a modicum of attention to what he actually said. You will see that it is garbage.



    I get that you consider those who agree with you infallible and those who don't garbage, in order to sleep at night as a believer, but you shouldn't be surprised that pronouncements like this from a former Rossian aren't making much headway with skeptics.

  • Louis Reed wrote: "Skeptics on the other hand, while nearly certain it is bogus, would change their mind in a heartbeat if the right evidence came along."


    Funny that you say this because that is what happened to me. [...] Therefore your last sentence clearly applies to me because I changed my mind based on scientific evidence. Was a long route though.


    Unless your heart beats very slowly, what happened to you is not what I referred to. The point is that a desktop experiment at easily accessible conditions that proves the existence of a nuclear energy source should not require one to read books or extensive literature to understand.


    Of course it's a kind of tautology that advocates in a pathological science are those who have spent a great deal of time poring over every detail connected to the field. One who is skeptical will not ordinarily consider it worth his time to learn more than necessary to be certain enough that there is no merit to the claims. The ability to recognize weak evidence is an important talent for a scientist.


    Another person who said he accepted the reality of an effect in cold fusion after looking more closely at the evidence in 2009 was Robert Duncan. But then he revealed his gullibility in 2011 when he said Rossi had empirical evidence, and again in 2012 when he said he planned to buy 2 ecats. So much for his judgement...


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    I know that well because in the 1990s I published a few articles on another controversial subject (together with this year Nobel Prize by the way) and it took about a decade for our results, first to be accepted, then to represent the "norm".


    The controversy about gravity waves is hardly comparable. There has been controversy about the measurements and the claims, but not really the general concepts. And the measurements are much more subtle and difficult, and even then it was settled in a decade (according to you).


    Anyway, this would be impressive if you had been awarded the Nobel Prize. But Kip Thorne, who *was* awarded the prize, used cold fusion as an example of results most likely due to artifacts (in the early 90s), and in his 2014 book, when discussing the future of fusion energy on earth and in space, he does not even mention cold fusion. Maybe you should send your colleague in gravity waves a memo and tell him to spend a year studying cold fusion.


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    After reading a few papers, then a dozen, then hundreds of them, I found that the evidence that cold fusion was junk science "not that strong".


    When the claim is as extraordinary as cold fusion, most scientists need unimpeachable evidence that it is not junk science. Without that, the claim is almost certainly bogus.



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    Jed is doing an excellent job and I admire his tenacity in that regard.


    If that's your standard of excellence, your conversion becomes more understandable.

  • Louis,


    You said earlier that if LENR were proven beyond doubt, you and your colleagues would be judged harshly by history. I am happy with that assessment. Even accepting that FPs were given a "few weeks" honeymoon as mainstream academics say, what happened after would be a fools errand to defend. The evidence is too overwhelming, and well documented by many different sources.


    Alternatively, were it proven lab anomalies, therefore a pseudoscience...which granted, will be hard to do (proving a negative) as has been said many times by THH and you, your narrative that FPs were welcome, and within weeks their results found conclusively to be wrong, will stand. No big accolades however for you and your friends, as LENR is already widely believed to be a pseudoscience.

  • Shane D.


    So what, in your mind, is the most overwhelming single piece of evidence (or series of identical or closely related experiments)? And how does that evidence qualify as "overwhelming?"


    SOT,


    I was referring to the overwhelming evidence that the scientific community misbehaved after the FP's announcement. The first few weeks?...I will give LR a pass on that and let him believe he and his colleagues were fair, and thorough in vetting the claims. I do not agree fully, but it is hardly worth arguing over IMO.


    If this turns out real like I think it will, the first few weeks will be but a footnote in history anyways. The overwhelming focus after that being on "CF is dead" parties, T-shirts, threats of career suicide that choked off new inflow of fresh talent, and academic dirty politics in general. It will be a blood bath no doubt, and every scientist playing a role in driving the science underground, will be looking for a place to hide.


    As to the other evidence you ask about; the evidence which leads me to believe there is something to LENR? As most others have said going back to the early CF conferences, up to today with Bianchi's story above, it is the preponderance of the evidence. No one real killer result as LR calls it. Back in my old ECNs days, when I needed a confidence boost, I would browse through LENR-CANR. It is very hard to read all the papers, and believe *ALL* these people can be wrong.


    Same goes for the recent ICCF21 abstracts. Then there were the recent reports from India, Japan, and Safire of transmutations. NASA/GEC working together. So much to ignore in order to break my belief, I just can not do it. Yes, I know the counterargument; shoddy protocols, poor N/S, no replications, outright errors, erroneous conclusions, artifacts, etc. and maybe in the end (if there is a clear one), those arguments will have been proven the right. We shall see.

  • So what, in your mind, is the most overwhelming single piece of evidence (or series of identical or closely related experiments)?

    I would say the boil off experiments. But in experimental science there may not be a single experiment that proves the point so much as the totality of evidence replicated in hundreds of different labs, thousands of times. If that does not convince you, nothing will. You will resemble people in 1913 who did not believe airplanes exist, or people today who think the moon landings were faked.


    I think the best case for cold fusion in a short paper is here:


    http://lenr-canr.org/acrobat/McKubreMCHcoldfusionb.pdf

  • And I suspect they knew exactly as much about cold fusion as necessary to dismiss it with confidence. Namely, what phenomenon was claimed and how unlikely it was, what would be possible were it valid, that commensurate reaction products are not seen, that the size of the claimed heat effects were not significantly different from the size of artifacts or calibration shifts or input heat in such experiments, and that they fell far short of what would be expected after a year of protracted efforts (let alone 30) by dozens or hundreds of scientists.


    One doesn't need to know all the details about a field to be skeptical. One doesn't have to read every homeopathy paper, attend every astrology conference, or pray with creationists to be skeptical of all three.



    Louis Reed : Are you an advocate of the standard model, I now call pathological science ? All you write here is just statements of ignorance of reality.


    What do you want to tell us?? That LENR, albeit it is more than real, cannot exist, because even some Nobel laureates do not understand all physics?


    Of course it's a kind of tautology that advocates in a pathological science are those who have spent a great deal of time poring over every detail connected to the field. One who is skeptical will not ordinarily consider it worth his time to learn more than necessary to be certain enough that there is no merit to the claims. The ability to recognize weak evidence is an important talent for a scientist.


    Two years ago I started to read a pathological standard model book about nuclear and particle physics. After three weeks I decided to avoid learning all this nonsense. Can you calculate a Gamow factor? Why is it usually terribly off up to some 10x ?? Can you give me a tip, where nuclear or particle physics could predict something with 4 digits precision given a generally usable formula???

  • You're not seriously asking that?! Just for fun I cut and pasted some 20 of the times I specified the time period in question (over the last week or so):


    in the weeks after the P&F news conference.


    in the weeks after the press conference.

    Okay, for the sake of argument, let us suppose this imaginary "honeymoon" took place. It would be unjustified. It would be as irrational, and stupid, as the attacks which actually did take place. In the months following the announcement, there was no reason to get excited, or to be enthusiastic, or to say the results were probably real. There was no evidence either way. The only scientific response would be to stay calm, refrain from jumping to conclusions, and say: "That's interesting. We will have to wait and see if others can replicate. If it turns out to be true, it might be very good news, so let us hope it is true."


    Anyone who would turn against cold fusion at the end of this imaginary honeymoon some weeks or months later would be jumping to conclusions, because replications had hardly begun at that point. That's also stupid.

  • There were a spate of fresh arguments and discussion about GEC and about induced fission/alpha decay that were interesting. But all that has petered out at this point, and we've fallen back into the perennial historical argument, which asks us to draw conclusions according to a speculative historical theory of pseudoscience (in contrast to considering claims and experiments on their technical merits).