Experimental Instrument For Rydberg Matter Research (University of Iceland)

  • S. Zeiner-Gundersen and S. Olafsson have published a paper that describes their latest experimental Instrument For Rydberg Matter Research at the university of Iceland.


    "The instrumental setup described here is a result of cooperation over the past three years between the University of Iceland, Norrønt AS laboratories in Norway and Leif Holmlid in Gothenburg. It has evolved greatly over these years with instrumentation built in Norway and Iceland at the same time. The Icelandic setup is mainly described here but the experimental results presented in this paper are from both laboratories"


    This (preprint) paper is too large to attach but can be (freely) downloaded at ResearchGate.
    Update: download may not be available anymore it seems. See below postings for other download options.

  • This has to be the most complete description of an experimental setup for the detection of Rydberg matter and ultra-dense hydrogen that I recall reading. Not much went into describing the catalysts and operating parameters though.


    Interestingly the signals they obtained started low and progressively increased in magnitude and energy over the course of weeks. I wonder if that's due to slow changes in/on the catalyst(s) occurring over time, or just accumulation of RM/UDH in the chamber.

  • Since the catalysts are a fundamental component of the experiments, not explaining what makes them work properly could lead to frustrations and misunderstandings by research groups who want to independently replicate the same results.


    Assuming Olafsson and Zeiner-Gundersen have still used the usual K-Fe2O3 styrene catalysts (no mention at all in the paper), their properties are known from the catalyst literature, but the procedures required to activate them are not obvious. This is complicated by the fact that in the industry sub-atmospheric pressures and relatively high temperatures are generally used, but ultra-high vacuum conditions and very mild heating as in some of the ultra-dense hydrogen experiments may also slowly activate the catalysts. Intermediate conditions in a rough vacuum and low temperatures might on the other hand prevent them from becoming sufficiently active within reasonable periods of time.


    It appears that the paper has been removed, by the way. Possibly this could be because it had a few typos and so on.

  • Alan Smith

    I downloaded it earlier as well, but as the authors might want to post a revised version later on, it could be just a matter of waiting a little bit more.


    EDIT: I've been able to reduce filesize to 7.5 MB without any apparent difference in quality, for what it's worth.

  • Interestingly the signals they obtained started low and progressively increased in magnitude and energy over the course of weeks.


    No wonder the half live for D*-D* to collapse to 4-He is calculated around 19 hours. But it heavily depends on the available coupling!

  • Since the catalysts are a fundamental component of the experiments, not explaining what makes them work properly could lead to frustrations and misunderstandings by research groups who want to independently replicate the same results.


    In case they did file any new catalyst(s) Patent Application(s) they will become available after 18 months of the filing date, so publications might still occur but at a later stage.
    Your assumption on them still using K-Fe2O3 styrene catalyst might still hold indeed.


    The facillities they show in this paper might be publically funded, so they have some obligations to publish at least the funded part.

  • Rob Woudenberg

    Photo 9b in the paper shows, in Sveinn Ólafsson's "conductivity cell" in his Iceland laboratory, what looks like a piece of extruded K-Fe2O3 catalyst pellet (see arrow).



    A similar setup was shown in part in Ólafsson's ICCF21 presentation, with a brown-green -looking pellet of similar size. The source image was already cropped in the presentation; I further cropped it to 16:9 proportions.


  • Rob Woudenberg

    A catalyst pellet hanging from above also appears to be visible in Figure 5a, but it's dark and difficult to make out unless you know what you're looking at.



    Quote

    The gas, catalyst holder and gas feeding line are shown in figure 5. The gas flows through the catalyst and excites Hydrogen to Hydrogen Rydberg Matter.


    [...] FIG. 5. Catalyst sample holder and Ta foil laser target and imaged laser spot during measurement.


    I think this is replicating Holmlid's 2011 experiment.


  • Alan Smith

    They might or might have been looking for better or faster working catalysts, but the typical extruded pellet shape makes me think that at least at the time of the photos they were still using pre-made K-Fe2O3 catalysts for their experiments. Both Sveinn Ólafsson in Iceland and Norront in Norway have expertise in film deposition techniques which seem in general better/more precise methods for obtaining good catalytically-active materials.


    In the previously published review a method which appeared to work well was vaporizing catalyst pellet material with the pulsed laser, producing a catalytically-active, sputtered K-Fe oxide dust and very large (visible, even) amounts of Rydberg matter in the hydrogen-filled chamber. The process didn't seem to take weeks of time, only about an hour.


    https://doi.org/10.1088/1402-4896/ab1276


    Quote

    [...] One type of dense matter observation may however be close to continuous H(0). Under the conditions of interest, the vacuum chamber is filled with a visible mist, probably of H(l) RM. Such a mist is formed after an hour or so of direct laser impact on catalyst pieces with the hydrogen gas pressure in the mbar range. This can be seen in figure 16 using D2 gas. Note the visible cloud that scatters the white light generated by the interaction of the IR laser with D(0). It is then also possible to observe small laser-initiated particles glowing with white light for a few seconds in the deuterium atmosphere. They move with a velocity of a few m s−1 and can collide and bounce from surfaces inside the apparatus while glowing continuously. This can be seen in a small video attached with one frame shown in figure 17. It is likely that these particles consist of D(0) and that the process giving the white light is the condensation of hydrogen RM D(l) onto the particle of D(0), as discussed further below.

  • In the previously published review a method which appeared to work well was vaporizing catalyst pellet material with the pulsed laser, producing a catalytically-active, sputtered K-Fe oxide dust and very large (visible, even) amounts of Rydberg matter in the hydrogen-filled chamber. The process didn't seem to take weeks of time, only about an hour.


    This makes me wonder whether also H(0) is hit by these laser pulses and causing mesons, pions and/or kaons in parallel.
    If I am not mistaken H(0) is also formed on the surface of this K-Fe oxide pellet.

  • Rob Woudenberg

    It likely is the case. In some papers Holmlid has occasionally pointed out that hitting the catalyst directly with the laser would produce a high energy signal. I think this is typically not done as it's a destructive operation, and hitting random catalyst pieces in the vacuum chamber would probably not give very consistently reproducible results.


    For example, from Direct observation of particles with energy >10 MeV/u from laser-induced fusion in ultra-dense deuterium (arXiv, 2013):


    Quote

    […] It is possible to observe even faster positive ion peaks than shown above, by using a higher laser repetition frequency of 15 Hz, or by directing the laser beam onto the catalytic emitter material in the D(-1) source. Such data are shown in Fig. 9, with the peak of the distribution at 13 ns or 14 MeV u-1. These results indicate directly that particles with energy > 10 MeV u-1 are produced by the fusion processes.


    In some papers he's put catalyst pieces on the laser target together with small samples of noble metals, to help maintaining there a layer of D(0). This is in later experiments where a plate or foil would be the laser target instead of an empty region close to the catalyst surface.


    From Charged particle energy spectra from laser-induced processes: Nuclear fusion in ultra-dense deuterium D(0) (2015, paywalled)


    Quote

    The source for producing D(0) resembles a published construction [3] but operates at higher gas pressures. In the source, a potassium-doped iron oxide catalyst sample [35,36] forms D(0) from deuterium gas (99.8%) at a pressure of 0.1 mbar. The D(0) formed falls down as clusters onto a horizontal target stainless steel plate below the source. On the target, small pieces of the iron oxide catalyst and Ir metal help to maintain a layer of D(0).

  • Dusty catalysts can of course also be formed in other ways to avoid two effects at the same time.

    Lots of unexplored technologies will still need to be developed to build a failproof and well controllable industrial reactor based on this.


    With respect to control I am quite suprised that triggering H(0) by a laser pulse isn't causing an avalanche effect.

    Holmlid has pointed this out in one of his paper I recall.

  • Dusty catalysts can of course also be formed in other ways to avoid two effects at the same time.

    Lots of unexplored technologies will still need to be developed to build a failproof and well controllable industrial reactor based on this.


    Although Q-switched pulsed lasers like the one employed by Holmlid and colleages very efficiently bore through metals and non-metals sputtering material around in the process, perhaps with pulsed RF/microwaves application in a resonant chamber similar to the one conceived by George Egely (but sealed with hydrogen at a reduced pressure < 1 mbar) one could also form large amounts of catalytically active dust from suitable precursor materials. A focused pulsed laser could still be needed for triggering the UDH formed with sufficient power.


    With respect to control I am quite suprised that triggering H(0) by a laser pulse isn't causing an avalanche effect.

    Holmlid has pointed this out in one of his paper I recall.


    This is implied in his latest patent application: accumulating H(0) in a single place makes it easier to trigger and cause a larger signal.


    However it was indeed also hinted in a past paper, eg in Spontaneous ejection of high-energy particles from ultra-dense deuterium D(0) by Holmlid and Olafsson (2015):


    Quote

    A laser pulse is one type of disturbance which can initiate this process. When the process has started, it can continue until the material is depleted. This is not unlikely, since the excess energy from the fusion itself will excite other neighboring clusters which trigger the transfer to the s = 1 level, giving further nuclear processes.