can Verified User
  • Member since Jan 20th 2017

Posts by can

    Using again an alkaline electrolyte cell, I tried retrieving the average strength of the signal over time at a frequency where the difference between the on/off state was high. I used a standard RTL-SDR USB adapter (radio receiver), a ready-made utility (rtl_tcp from the 'osmocom' package) to retrieve the samples and custom-made code in Python to process them.

    Some related links:

    The average strength is calculated roughly every second with samples retrieved at a rate of 256 kHz. The peak value over those samples is also retrieved. Below is the graph from a brief period of testing under various conditions. The low flat areas are during off conditions.

    It appears that many dynamically changing variables affect it, and the EMI might not necessarily always increase when increasing applied voltage. The onset of plasma appearance can be stronger in magnitude, to only drop substantially when a visible plasma appears (left portion of the graph).

    After a plasma is visible and voltage high, The signal at times slowly increases under stationary input conditions, presumably from the electrolyte heating up and its concentration increasing near the cathode. Sometimes instead it suddenly drops in response to spontaneous changes in the reaction (middle portion of the graph).

    The signal can also be affected by walking in the same room, which presumably causes the generated emissions to bounce differently to the antenna, which seemed unusual for a ~82 MHz frequency. The line-of-sight path between the antenna and the cell is unimpeded (not shown here).

    Both with an acidic and alkaline electrolyte it does not seem that a large cathode helps, even if the reaction looks stronger and power put into the cell substantially increases (from prior testing—not shown here).

    I also tried retrieving data at a high rate (about 2MHz) and as I pointed out in a different thread, the noise appears to have a 1/f character. With a logarithmic scale for both axes in the frequency spectrum, a more or less straight line is obtained.

    What this implies exactly, I'm not sure but it's probably not too unexpected. More information here: 1/f noise - Scholarpedia.

    Of possible interest for those looking for alternative signs of electromagnetic emissions from their reactions: besides AM/FM receivers it is sometimes also possible to roughly gauge the strength of the EMI generated using DSL internet routers. Certain models have a 'DSL spectrum' functionality which gives the signal-to-noise ratio in dB from 0 to 35 MHz of the DSL carrier frequencies. When strong EMI are generated, large holes (i.e. loss of SNR) can appear in the spectrum and this information may be logged in some way. High-speed DSL connections are sensitive to EMI and sometimes connection errors, speed losses or drops may occur under high EMI conditions.

    Here for example I have a relatively large 'hole' around carrier frequency #5600, logged during one such high-EMI tests.

    This is not exactly a very accurate measurement, but I know that strong electromagnetic noise is being generated when my DSL router (located a few rooms away from the testing environment) starts showing signs of interference from it, and no other equipment has ever caused such holes in my case.

    Caveat: if the EMI is too strong, the internet connection is dropped and the graph gets reset (at least with the router I have), although it has not happened yet under the current testing conditions.


    If they are X-rays, I think they are unlikely to have been emitted directly by the reaction. The signal at 70V, if you carefully check out the different vertical scales (counts/min, counts/5 min, counts/30m), was about 2000 times larger than background. Such strong signal should be easily detected by most radiation detectors.

    It's still possible that the signal was generated inside the detector itself while still not necessarily being electromagnetic interference, and so that it appeared larger than it actually was. A similar principle is used with Leif Holmlid's "muon detector", where the muons generate electron-positron showers directly inside and in front of the window of the "blind" photomultiplier tube (PMT) used for detection (see here). No scintillation crystal is normally used, just aluminium foil in its place.

    If this was the case, it would mean that an ordinary scintillation detector as used by Matsumoto would be enough to detect the 'muons', although making sure that it really isn't just EMI under these these conditions would be a challenge.

    This more recent (from year 2000) brief open-access paper again from Takaaki Matsumoto seems more relevant (low-voltage discharges/plasma electrolysis using DC and thin cathodes) to this thread, but to be honest the 150 keV claim sounds in-credible. It refers to the same tests described in the Journal of New Energy 1996 1-4 issue linked above:


    Feasibility of X-ray laser by Underwater Spark Discharges

    Abstract: The method of Underwater Spark Discharges(USD) is one of the most effective ways for generating extremely compressed atomic clusters (called itonic clusters or micro Ball Lightning(BL)). It is also associated with energetic X-rays, which are caused by the break up of the itonic electrons. Despite of low voltage discharges of about 50 V, the high energy X-rays up to 150 keV can be generated. This paper proposed two methods of generating X-ray laser by using micro BL: (1) micro BL on surfaces of regularly arrayed wire cathodes and (2) gas of micro BL generated by USD. (author)

    Here it is mentioned that the X-Rays are due to the break up of the clusters (Bremsstrahlung?).

    But earlier on (JNE) it was suggested this was just electromagnetic noise:

    Why in-credible? 150 keV x-rays would pass through many meters of air and several centimeters through glass and water, and I think I would have felt them if they are routinely emitted in the experiments.

    Also see: X-Ray attenuation & absorption calculator (


    The following papers (1992–1993) discuss those experiments with Pt "pin" and Cu plate, but I don't understand why in the first paper the pin is referred to as an anode since AC was used. Since anodic plasma needs considerably higher voltages than cathodic plasma, it is possible that a plasma only appeared when polarity was negative (I personally never tried AC, though, so I could be wrong).

    In the experiments described in the Journal of New Energy issue I uploaded earlier, DC was used instead.

    I do easily get "separated sparks" with titanium wire as the cathode, but that's due to it (or the hydride formed) igniting with temperature, and generally the process is destructive for the wire. Perhaps other hydride-forming metals (e.g. Pd) just emit sparks at a low rate under similar conditions, as they get eroded.

    The dust on the bottom of the jar is iron oxide powder.

    EDIT: to clarify, titanium also reacts (combusts) similarly by excessive joule heating in the atmosphere.

    EDIT: also clarified that I meant the "separated sparks" mentioned in the previously posted excerpt relatively to figure 4. I have otherwise never observed these features in the tests except possibly from excess K2CO3 electrolyte accumulated on the cathode dissociating to potassium metal and reacting violently with water.

    In response to suggestions (e.g. Matsumoto) of plasma balls detaching from the cathode I made a quick test.

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    What is going on: The electrolyte is a moderately concentrated K2CO3+KOH solution dirtied by iron oxide impurities. Voltage is about 69V. The cathode is a 1 mm tungsten needle with a sharp tip immersed for about 1–2 mm in the electrolyte. There are two anodes: one composed of two 10mm-thick steel brackets and a 0.3 mm tungsten wire.

    The test starts with cathodic plasma already ongoing with the large steel anode and the 1 mm tungsten needle. I then submerge the 0.3 mm tungsten wire anode and remove the steel anode. The reaction at the cathode keeps going at a lower rate and nothing of interest occurs at the anode regardless of the distance. I try switching anodes a few times and at times both are immersed.

    The most interesting observation is that once the cathodic plasma is initiated, the wire anode does not need to have a large immersed surface area. I could not observe plasma balls (or similar) detaching from the cathode and going to the thin anode, though. If different testing conditions to see this are needed, please advise.

    EDIT: here is one source for that from the attached PDF document (around page 81), although it is not here that the use of two anodes is mentioned.


    • JNE1N4.pdf

      (3.88 MB, downloaded 53 times, last: )

    Yes, the algorithm is quite simple. The only thing to consider is using the RAW images and not the compressed ones (usually webcams provide JPEG or MPEG streams that remove most of the information, the uncompressed images are available at a lower rates).

    I noticed this addition only now. The Cosmic Ray Finder application apparently uses MJPG with my webcam, which caused sometimes noticeable block compression artifacts. By default it seems that OpenCV uses instead YUY2, which brings better quality. In both cases at least with my webcam the maximum is 10 fps. The codec can also be forced as seen in the example given here:

    You got it! This is the natural evolution of this concept... Ultrasounds are able to generate plasma by themselves (sonoluminescence) under proper conditions, and probably they will facilitate the formation of plasma with an external voltage applied, because of charge separation or micro bubbles. But there is even more: according to recent experiments shown by Bob Greenyer, ultrasounds seem to directly generate EVOs (plasmoids) inside the liquid. If these entities are actual charge clusters and not only an hydrodynamic analogue, many interesting things may happen by their interaction with an electric or magnetic field... It is an entire new territory to explore.

    An issue is that ordinary sparkling (carbonated) water will not have that many CO2 bubbles available in the first place, and it will even be more conducting than plain/tap water due to the dissolved salts (natural or artificially added) giving effervescence. So, to test the idea, ultrasonic cavitation seems the most reliable and reproducible choice.

    It does not seem like it would be too difficult to test for people with already the ultrasonic equipment at disposal, but for a plasma to be initiated electrolytically I think one would still need either a large electrolyte concentration or sufficiently high voltages.

    Sonoluminescence from isolated cavitating bubbles is likely to involve different mechanisms than electrolytic plasma, in any case. The conditions needed for obtaining the latter seem significantly different; bubbles alone are not enough, and plasma generation does not seem to be a sort of resonating phenomenon as with sonoluminescence (if I understand its general idea correctly).

    Today I made a few other tests, again with 10% HCl electrolyte solution of low-grade purity using a 0.3 mm Ni wire. I added a partial enclosure in the form of a plastic tube (syringe) to avoid the emission of dust and electrolyte droplets into the environment. It allowed longer testing times without strong bleach or chlorine odors, although still not as much as with alkaline electrolyte. The acidic electrolyte in these tests tends to heat up quite rapidly and evaporation (and loss of Cl from the solution?) is an issue. The anode was a large copper bracket with two cupronickel coins in electrical contact with it.

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    I don't think I showed the changes with voltage in detail before. The video here starts with a relatively large dendritic deposition of Cu-CuNi on the cathode, at about 40–41V. At this voltage the tips of the dendrites become incandescent. As voltage is increased, the plasma at the tips turns blue and by increasing it further, the dendrites eventually get destroyed and the reaction transitions to a standard-looking cathodic glow plasma with bright dots fixed in place on the wire surface, possibly where nanotips exist. Voltage is increased up to about 72V, where the wire is homogeneously covered by a blue plasma.

    Occasionally voltage is lowered again to 40V, where dendrites can grow again.

    Electromagnetic emission appears to be the strongest when the wire is in a thin state and 'regular' plasma electrolysis takes place. If dendrites are allowed to grow and stabilize up to higher voltage levels (by increasing voltage slowly), not as much EMI gets generated.

    I put the webcam close to the jar, but it didn't get damaged by the EMI, somewhat disappointingly ;)

    I did not observe again any clear increase due to the testing, but I did not allow the webcam (CMOS sensor) to get too hot.

    Now, regardless of the lack of quality of the paper and the obscure publication venue, the claim is quite bold, as this would turn any battery in a indefinite power source. Electric vehicles would become infinite range overnight.

    Too good to be true?

    I think the sulfuric acid electrolyte would etch the zeolites beads (?) and eventually be neutralized, and the beads damaged. Acid etching is a commonly used treatment to alter the porosity of molecular sieves.

    In principle the proposed experiment in the Barsoum document should not be difficult to replicate. However, the "unique ceramic" is so vaguely described that it could be anything from a commercially-available product to an unknown "proprietary material".

    What an annoyingly vague paper on the actual materials used. The watermark on the document also adds insult to the injury.

    The "unique ceramic" appears likely to be a commercially-available 3A synthetic zeolite. The document feels like something from the description of a patent application.

    Working link:…d_engineering-An_overview

    [...] If this theory is true, it should be possible to get electrolytic plasma by applying a relatively low voltage to deionised water (less than 50V, but dependent on the cell geometry) and then by adding some sparkling water! :)

    Perhaps what you suggest could be more easily reproducible with ultrasonics? I have thought for some time that externally producing cavitation bubbles could make the plasma/sparking process easier to start—at least when they are generated on the cathode—but I haven't got anything yet on this regard to test.

    EDIT: on a loosely related note, it turns out that reproducing the operation of the Cosmic Ray Finder program is not complex using Python and the OpenCV library. Only a few lines of code are needed for basic operation. It looks like I'm using the camera differently than that program does and the camera is heating up less and has better image quality.

    Here are brief examples of the underlying principles:…ms-in-opencv-40ee5969a3b7


    To detect cosmic ray events you would read the webcam continuously and calculate the image histogram similarly to what is done in the link above, and select images that have more than a predetermined amount of pixels above a certain threshold value. Operation is fast and compared to the Russian program it uses less resources.

    Next H2 will do 2H monoatomic, when they will leave the surface.. but quickly they will become H2.

    Rydberg atom is unstable only clusters from its will become stable.

    What could be tools to help this kind of process ?

    In the process described by Holmlid, alkali atoms help this process. They form Rydberg matter clusters more easily and can interact with the hydrogen atoms on the surface. Once H atoms attach to the alkali Rydberg matter formed, becoming themselves Rydberg matter, they remain separated and do not recombine to H2.

    See Fig.3 in and associated text.


    I might have already written this elsewhere, but a while back I tried putting two canisters of potassium hydroxide/carbonate close to the webcam, and the average readings (detection events) increased by about 50%, similarly to what the Geiger counter I previously had did. Indeed, at least this no-brand webcam appears to be somewhat sensitive to ionizing radiation, and I think the signal (event detection rate) I'm getting on average could be largely due to background radiation.

    Depending on the design, sensitive and poorly-shielded equipment may be destroyed by strong EMI, although it's possible that part of the problem could have been from a small aluminium foil I placed directly in front of the CMOS sensor (mainly for light-tightness), which might have worked as a sort of antenna.

    Currently I'm unsure of where to put the CMOS sensor exactly. I haven't noticed any real correlation with experimental changes so far with the Cosmic Ray Finder application using distances in the order of 55–70 cm. I did notice earlier on that noise appeared to increase with time but I didn't realize right away it was due to temperature. The webcam typically heats up somewhat during operation, but remains just warm. The wall of the glass jar during operation was hot to the touch.

    In past related tests at higher voltages (500–800V), dilute electrolyte solutions (0.05M or less) and a considerably higher cathode wear rate, which I documented in the previous 'Mondaini' thread, I used to routinely get rather strong EMI that at times even affected my phone line (=> internet connection). With 10% HCl electrolyte I got EMI close to that obtained in those tests, but not quite as strong. I still think this is the most interesting reaction product and it seems related to cathode material vaporization (using HCl solution, from the deposition layer getting continuously destroyed by the plasma reaction, at least at voltages greater than 45–50V. The bulk of the cathode did not seem to be affected in the short term).

    BTW, a couple of days ago I made a similar experiment, and I used a webcam with the Cosmic Ray Finder software in order to detect something anomalous. It recorded 3 events while the current was limited to few tens of mA, than when I increased it to 1 A for about 1 second, the webcam stopped working completely (it was permanently damaged)... :/

    I haven't used it yet with the HCl electrolyte (the experiments with HCl generate annoying gases, eject large amounts of metal dust and tend to heavily corrode metals inside and outside the vessel used—at least a semi-sealed is required, so I have avoided putting too much time on them yet), but today I tried putting my webcam very close to the wall of the operating cell using high-concentration K2CO3.

    At first it started malfunctioning and I thought I damaged it, but it appears that the slight EMI generated affects its normal operation depending on its position close tothe electrodes. The EMI was significantly stronger with HCl, so it's possible that it could have become actually damaged with it. I would start getting strange images like these:

    A related issue I noticed by using the camera at a close distance is that heat/temperature tends to increase the camera's internal noise, and after a while a large number of low-contrast dots start filling the image, with events getting detected at a rate in the tens of thousands/day (the program cannot keep up with this rate and the dead time increases considerably).

    Most of the dots are fixed in place, however. These are two different images made by compositing on top of each about 150 "detection events". Note that I'm referring to the low-contrast dots only, not the darker, likely real traces.

    I think it's just heat-induced noise in the CMOS sensor, but I haven't investigated this very much in depth. Increasing the camera's temperature using a hair drier did not cause quite the same results, but still caused general noise to increase and false detection events.

    Below are graphs made by processing/analyzing the files generated by the program. Before moving the webcam close to the jar I did not notice any correlation with experimental conditions.


    In my opinion the main issue is that the amount of UDH formed in the experiments has never been clarified and it's likely to (still) be minuscule in most cases, therefore far from being useful.

    With an elementary setup employing a focused Nd:YAG pulsed laser, vacuum chamber and oscilloscope, a small positive meson(-like?) signal may always be observed from laser target plates, regardless of the state of the catalysts and the hydrogen admitted. This has also been suggested (in passing) in the recently published paper on the catalysts:


    [...] It is possible that all solid materials contain H(0) since it is so stable and forms so small molecules. Thus, experiments which indeed are able to detect H(0) may easily give a positive answer.

    This is in part also my experience, from the results (unpublished) observed by a colleague who managed to borrow for a period a Nd:YAG laser to use in his vacuum chamber, a good while back. Although one could tell from related observations when apparently larger amounts of UDH were formed—which required the catalysts to be in working order—the oscilloscope signal/pulse did not change significantly in character before and after that. I did not have direct control on the setup, so there is still the chance of problems, but it seems consistent with what Holmlid has written.

    As I see it, this is mostly a matter of reproducing the same measurements and agreeing (or not) with Holmlid's interpretation on the observed results. An exact "recipe" for repeating them might not bring much more to the table and might not be really needed, given that UDH has been suggested to be essentially ubiquitous and easily formed also in ordinary chemical industrial reactors (to what extent, unclear).

    A reproducible method for generating and collecting UDH in large amounts and obtaining macroscopic, useful results is required. I'm not sure if the patent application discussed in this thread provides that.