The perpetual “is LENR even real” argument thread.

  • You always “circle back” to insist on obvious potential sources of error that imply researchers are clueless about basic experimental methodology. I have yet to see you reading the 2020 paper about D flow through PdAg and make any specific comment about what they report instead of listing all the potential errors they could have made.

    I certainly Hope to see LENR helping humans to blossom, and I'm here to help it happen.

  • I can see where this is going...right back to Foamgate. How about we keep it at "You are wrong, I am right" and vice versa, and leave it at that? No more deep dives.


    It can be like the old "Tastes great...less filling!" beer commercials. Never a real resolution to the debate as it is really about personal opinion. Same with the FP boil-off.

    Shane:


    I am not the one claiming that F&P experiment is a reference experiment. I'd hope that no-one here is. If you keep quiet about it - I will. I have sympathy with Jed when he says Pd-D is the way to go for a reference experiment it is just that Simplicity is the one I have always been given here, when I ask. I am hoping for something better. Surely in those 180 replications (or whatever) there is one very carefully done and well written?


    Perhaps Jed, and others, would put forward McKubre's sequence of experiments as that? It is a shame, for a reference experiment, that they showed relatively low levels of excess heat compared with energy in: that means you need very accurate calorimetry to see an effect if you replicate them. But I'd guess they are the best you have?

  • Curbina.


    THH doesn't wish to be better informed, or visit a lab to see a working system (threads passim) since then he might face an existential conflict of doubt about his scepticism..

    You have never yet said what "seeing" an experiment would give me that reading good write-ups would not?


    I have always found that given a complex system with a demo, all my immediate responses are uninformed unless I am very familiar with it. Were I an expert - things might be different, although then I'd maybe not trust my conventional expert ideas when given with a system that might be anomalous because it broke normal rules in some subtle way.


    Anyway - I'd not have been a good mark for Rossi - and while I have every respect for Alan as a conscientious and competent experimenter (neither word applies to Rossi) the same deficit of "seeing things work" applies.


    THH

  • You always “circle back” to insist on obvious potential sources of error that imply researchers are clueless about basic experimental methodology. I have yet to see you reading the 2020 paper about D flow through PdAg and make any specific comment about what they report instead of listing all the potential errors they could have made.

    You are right Curbina - and I must reserve judgement on that one because I don't think I've read it. Perhaps others could say why they do not propose it as a reference experiment, or why they do?


    But researchers are sometimes clueless - and more than normal seem to be doing LENR. Niot to say there are not some very competent researchers as well.


    The main reaons is that there is in principle no way, given waht we now know of LENR (almost nothing clearly predictive) to distinguish between hunting for subtle experimental artifacts and hunting for LENR. Most of teh accounts I have read focus on "maximising the effect". those that seek to do something else have not yet resulted in much prediction of use - or it would be used to construct a good reference experiment.


    Maybe this can be done - it is jusyt that no-one seems to like other people's reference experiments. That says something.


    A bit like the Tory party at the moment... ( :) whoops - I did not mean to say that! Just slipped out).


    THH


    PS - Jed and I agree Pd-D but I want a good modern description takling into account all that understanding we now have of how LENR works to deliver a more reliable experiment. Not 100%, but with correct initial sample screening and checking (built into the protocol) high enough to be useful.

  • Just so everyone knows, I warned once that I would delete posts relating to that, and I have simply done exactly as warned, I don’t mind keep doing that, we are not going back to that topic again. The closed thread contains all the arguments from both sides that will ever be.

    Well, I was promised otherwise - that correct reference where logically necessary to reply to others was allowed. Delete me on this thread and see what will happen!


    (yes - I am a prima donna....) :)

  • Well, I was promised otherwise - that correct reference where logically necessary to reply to others was allowed. Delete me on this thread and see what will happen!


    (yes - I am a prima donna....) :)

    You have only mentioned it, not getting back to it. Unless the ones I have deleted that are simply attempting to re start the whole thing.

    I certainly Hope to see LENR helping humans to blossom, and I'm here to help it happen.

  • I agree with Curbina. The F&P were wrong topic has been done to death. Ascoli is welcome to proffer other topics, but foamgate is not one of them, he has been indulged to a huge extent, more than almost any other member except our dear Gennadiy. If Stan Pons could be tempted out of retirement to reply (or start a new thread on foam) it might be worth carrying on, but failing that unlikely event we are NEVER going there again.

  • I certainly Hope to see LENR helping humans to blossom, and I'm here to help it happen.

  • I have only deleted posts on the specific topic I warned wouldn’t be allowed. If you have other topics to discuss you are welcome here.

    There would be many other interesting topics to discuss, but my logic suggests me that it's futile discussing unclear topics, when there is no possibility to find an agreement on a very clear and well documented one.


    I agree with Curbina. The F&P were wrong topic has been done to death. Ascoli is welcome to proffer other topics, but foamgate is not one of them, he has been indulged to a huge extent, more than almost any other member except our dear Gennadiy. If Stan Pons could be tempted out of retirement to reply (or start a new thread on foam) it might be worth carrying on, but failing that unlikely event we are NEVER going there again.

    Okay, thanks for your offering, but I prefer to refrain from posting until another thread will be open on this same topic and, maybe, Stan Pons will directly explain how to interpret his results.


    If not, goodby and good luck to everyone. :)

  • Shane:


    I am not the one claiming that F&P experiment is a reference experiment. I'd hope that no-one here is. If you keep quiet about it - I will. I have sympathy with Jed when he says Pd-D is the way to go for a reference experiment it is just that Simplicity is the one I have always been given here, when I ask. I am hoping for something better. Surely in those 180 replications (or whatever) there is one very carefully done and well written?


    Perhaps Jed, and others, would put forward McKubre's sequence of experiments as that? It is a shame, for a reference experiment, that they showed relatively low levels of excess heat compared with energy in: that means you need very accurate calorimetry to see an effect if you replicate them. But I'd guess they are the best you have?

    Not saying you started it.


    As to a reference experiment: few remember, but right after Google's Nature paper came out, I and Matt Trevithick (head of what we call Team Google, but was officially named Charleston Project) talked about that because that was a decision they had grappled with in the planning stage. "Which experiment do we use?" Seemed simple, but like now, the more they dug into the literature, the less obvious it was.


    So, we agreed to start the thread Team Google wants your opinion: "What is the highest priority experiment the LENR community wants to see conducted?" - Replication Attempts - LENR Forum (lenr-forum.com) with the hope that the community could rally around a few experiments they (TG) could try and replicate if they continued the research. In other words, come up with a reference experiment, or lab rat as others call it. And if they followed the communities advise, tried to replicate again, would they accept their findings?


    It was a very active thread, with robust debate, and attracted the attention of many in the science. I closed the thread with this summary. It was my opinion only, and others may disagree, however Matt concurred before I released it:



    This thread began with a challenge by Matt Trevithick (Google Research Program Manager) to answer 2 questions:


    1. "What is the highest priority experiment the LENR community wants to see conducted?"


    2. "What would convince you that the experiment has been run well, such that you will accept the results... whatever they might be?"


    With the condition that our recommendations: "Be well formulated so that they are actionable". These were the same questions Matt asked the audience at ICCF18 in 2013.


    Matt and his colleagues spun up an effort in 2015 to independently evaluate LENR, which resulted in this Nature Perspective that was published on May 27, 2019.


    The Nature Perspective reported a null result: "So far, we have found no evidence of anomalous effects claimed by proponents of cold fusion that cannot otherwise be explained prosaically."


    However, this was qualified with: “This result leaves open the possibility that the debunking of cold fusion in 1989 was perhaps premature because the relevant physical and material conditions had not (and indeed have not yet) been credibly realized and thoroughly investigated. Should the phenomenon happen to be real (itself an open question), there may be good technical reasons why proponents of cold fusion have struggled to detect anomalous effects reliably and reproducibly. Continued scepticism of cold fusion is justified, but we contend that additional investigation of the relevant conditions is required before the phenomenon can be ruled out entirely."


    It also struck an optimistic tone: "We have also learned that studying cold fusion can impact other areas of science and technology. For example, the absorption of hydrogen into palladium is an active area for exploring how metal–solute interactions affect properties relevant to energy storage, catalysis and sensing. We believe that there is exciting new science to be done within the parameter space of cold fusion experiments, and that this is an area worthy of engagement from the broader scientific community, even if the discovery of cold fusion at high enough rates for energy applications does not materialize."


    TG made an argument for further research, and they are now planning for it. I connected with Matt, and he invited our opinion. On July 12, 2019, the LENR community by way of LENR Forum, started this thread to help the cause.


    The original question posed to us (What is the highest priority experiment the LENR community wants to see conducted?), soon morphed into a more general question (What 3 experiments will most likely help TG validate LENR?). Since IMO, this “revised” question was in the spirit of the original, a consensus on one could be construed to be a consensus on the other, so the debate continued on without interruption. I mention this only because TG’s goal is much more expansive, and does not deserve to be so narrowly defined as *validating* anything, much less LENR.


    Soon after the thread opened, it became apparent that no matter how the question was worded, we would be unable to form a consensus via the main forum. Thus began a private effort on my part to manage the process, by assembling a small team under “Conversations”. Unfortunately, this small team encountered the same frustrations as the main forum, and within a few weeks, our committee was disbanded.


    Now, 7 weeks later and after more than 900 replies and 38k views, it is apparent to me the LENR Forum was unable to provide a satisfactory answer to Matt’s questions. Some will dispute this (some already have) and feel there was a rough conclusion, with some experiments mentioned more than others. I will leave that up to Matt and his team to decide. But, from my perspective, a clear consensus did not emerge, so we will leave it as is...inconclusive.


    However, IMO we did accomplish some good, so this was not an exercise in futility. The general discussion of many experiments, their pros and cons, was useful. We certainly provided TG food for thought.


    Also, from my vantage point, I think the debate exposed a weakness within the community that needs to be addressed. Many times we have heard it said that LENR is “proven”, as evidenced by the many “replicable experiments”. However, when those experiments were held up to closer examination, there were always caveats; too many to justify the claim that LENR is a proven science. I think there needs to be some clarification as to what “replicable" and "proven” mean, when applied to LENR.


    Last but not least; this was fun. That always makes it worthwhile. We are here to talk after all, and that is just what we did. And you never know what good comes from discussions like this until the last chapter is written, and Google has not written it yet.


    Thanks go to all members who provided their informed opinions, those researchers in the field who contributed “by proxy”, our resident skeptics, and my “TG committee”.


    In particular, I would like to thank Matt Trevithick and his team for giving us this great opportunity. This has indeed been a unique “experiment”, unlike any other in LENR history.


    Good luck TG…the planet is counting on you!

  • "Which experiment do we use?" Seemed simple, but like now, the more they dug into the literature, the less obvious it was.

    If you look at the ICCF24 presentation, and also some of their papers, the plot thickens.


    They definitely tried initially to understand and replicate the Pd-D experiments.


    They thought - in line with LENR field thought - that high loading was important.


    They therefore spent a long time trying to obtain high loading.


    They found:

    (1) high loading is very difficult - as high as some of the claimed loading in good experiments impossible. (0.95 max, and that very rare, they found)

    (2) measuring loading accurately was extremely challenging. They tried several ways. I think they discovered the way it was typically measured in LENR papers was wrong.


    That is all interesting, and deserves airing. Were they incompetent at getting high loading? Or were they just measuring better?


    There is then a black hole - did they try those Pd-D experiments. If not, why not?


    THH

  • Also, from my vantage point, I think the debate exposed a weakness within the community that needs to be addressed. Many times we have heard it said that LENR is “proven”, as evidenced by the many “replicable experiments”. However, when those experiments were held up to closer examination, there were always caveats; too many to justify the claim that LENR is a proven science. I think there needs to be some clarification as to what “replicable" and "proven” mean, when applied to LENR.

    Yes - my view exactly.

  • Well, TG is no longer funding research on LENR that I know of, although some components of the team are clearly continuing on. One being Schenkel at LL Berkely who attended the ICCF. What Matt (now with DCVC venture) said at ICCF24 was a recap of their Nature paper. Old news IMO. And as been pointed out here, they appear to have gotten bogged down by putting so much of their effort into Parkhomov.


    On the bright side, which I default too, the ICCF did present a number of individuals, and teams, now claiming repeatability...defined as being able to replicate "at will", or every time. We may have that reference experiment after all, and not just one.

  • I am not the one claiming that F&P experiment is a reference experiment.

    I meant bulk Pd-D in general. As opposed to, say, Arata, who did gas loading of nanoparticles using electrolysis. That was replicated, but only once as far as I know. I did not mean the boil off experiment. Only one or two others did it, so I would not call that portion of the experiment a reference.


    (By "reference" I mean a standard that is well documented with instructions that many other people have replicated. Other people may define the word differently.)

  • I meant bulk Pd-D in general. As opposed to, say, Arata, who did gas loading of nanoparticles using electrolysis. That was replicated, but only once as far as I know. I did not mean the boil off experiment. Only one or two others did it, so I would not call that portion of the experiment a reference.


    (By "reference" I mean a standard that is well documented with instructions that many other people have replicated. Other people may define the word differently.)

    Exactly - but we know more now than then - surely a bulk Pd-D experiment could be documented in detail with expected results. If highly sample-dependent a protocol for identifying a large source of good samples could be established. Such a source would allow replication and testing with the main loss of replicability removed.

  • Well, TG is no longer funding research on LENR that I know of, although some components of the team are clearly continuing on. One being Schenkel at LL Berkely who attended the ICCF. What Matt (now with DCVC venture) said at ICCF24 was a recap of their Nature paper. Old news IMO. And as been pointed out here, they appear to have gotten bogged down by putting so much of their effort into Parkhomov.


    On the bright side, which I default too, the ICCF did present a number of individuals, and teams, now claiming repeatability...defined as being able to replicate "at will", or every time. We may have that reference experiment after all, and not just one.

    All you need is for everyone to agree with what these teams say about themselves (for at least one of them).