Louis Reed New Member
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Posts by Louis Reed

    There is a difference between "the best" and "one of the best."

    Ah, so Beiting's work is still not as good as you once though Rossi's work was since you thought Rossi had "given out *far* more proof than any previous cold fusion researcher" .


    Louis Reed wrote:

    "Could you provide a link to your first denial that the ecat works?"

    I don't recall. As I said, in one of my first reports -- and in many subsequent ones -- I said that Rossi refused to let me measure input and output, so I do not trust him. I often said that any businessman should run from the room upon encountering him. That turned out to be true! And, as I said, I described how he almost blew up the people from NASA. That seems like a pretty damning record to me, but apparently you think I was engaged in high praise. It makes me wonder what I would have to say about someone before you would say I am being critical.

    I know you were often critical of Rossi, but you often defended him anyway, and argued for the reality of the ecat in spite of his foibles.

    Consider this from June 20, 2015:

    "I think it is a good idea to give him the benefit of the doubt. We all know he is controversial and he sometimes contradicts himself. He says odd things. Yet I think he is worth paying close attention to.

    "Many people blame him for the poor quality of the Lugano experiment. I doubt that he shares the blame. Both Levi et al. and Rossi insist that he had nothing to do with the design of the experiment, and no influence over how it was done after he assisted setting it up. I think that must be true, because the first set of experiments were done in his lab, where I assume he did have some influence, and those experiments were better than Lugano. His influence was beneficial. If they had done an improved version of those first experiments, it might have been a triumph."

    Sounds pretty supportive of Rossi.

    Or this from Aug 2015:

    "Yes, I have been critical of Lugano too, and so has Mike McKubre. But as far as I know Rossi had no say in the design or execution of that test. That is what the researchers who conducted the test said, and what Rossi said. I think it is unlikely they are lying. I regard the notion that he magically masterminded it as yet another unfounded conspiracy theory. Rossi can be annoying. He riles people, including me. I think that triggers these unfounded attacks, weird conspiracy theories, and web sites such as "shutdownrossi.com" He brings out the worst in people."

    So, critical of Rossi, and yet defending him at the same time.

    And as for whether the ecat works, as late as 27 Dec 2015, nearly 5 years from his first public demo, you were more or less convinced the ecat worked. Maybe a little less than in 2011/12, but still (emphasis, mine):

    "The only thing I know for sure about Rossi is that over the years several experts have tested his systems in his absence, and they have confirmed that the machines sometimes produce kilowatt levels of excess heat. They do not want to publish these findings, but I have seen them. They are based on conventional HVAC techniques, and at power levels easy to confirm, so I expect they are right. It seems to me that fact is more significant than Rossi's odd pronouncements on his blog. I do not know what to make of those pronouncements, but I do know what to make of flowing water, conventional flow meters, and thermocouples."

    Louis Reed wrote:

    "If his fuel were producing a watt of power from nuclear reactions, then 20 times that amount of fuel at the same temperature would produce 20 watts."

    That is certainly not a foregone conclusion! If only it were that simple. Some of the Japanese researchers are using 100 times more of this ZrO2NiPd fuel, made as closely as possible to the Beiting's fuel, yet they are getting zero output. Or less output than he is getting, for various reasons that are becoming clear.

    That does not contradict the conclusion. It indicates that the hypothetical (that the fuel is producing one watt from nuclear reactions) is probably wrong.

    Ah, but you have no technical reason not to be satisfied.

    Rothwell wrote:

    "Ah, but you have no technical reason not to be satisfied."

    If what he claims were true, it would be *technically* possible to prove it in a much simpler and more direct way. That's a technical argument. It is implausible that he wouldn't do so if he could. That is a human argument, but compelling anyway.

    After seeing the better part of the cold fusion community (including you) fooled to the tune of a factor of 6 by Rossi's claimed output power in a simpler experiment, it is a little rich to claim that Beiting couldn't possibly be making an error in power measurement of a few per cent.

    Beiting's claims are similar to McKubre's more than 20 years ago, except that he doesn't have an excuse not to close the loop. The world is not going to pay attention to repeated claims that never get better. When an isolated system produces heat more or less indefinitely, it will get attention.

    I don't know how magicians bend keys or spoons in contrived situations, and I don't really care, but I know that if they could really bend steel with their mind, they could easily prove it beyond any doubt, and would make practical use of it off the stage.

    I don't need to understand how every new claim of perpetual motion goes wrong to be skeptical, because if it really worked, unequivocal proof would be easy.

    It's ok if you want to spend the next 30 years like the last, every year hyping yet another claim of 1 watt out with 10 watts in, but if you want to get the attention of mainstream science, it's gonna take some progress -- preferably in the form of a self sustaining system. A new source of energy should not require an old source of energy to work.

    Fleischmann, M. and S. Pons, Calorimetry of the Pd-D2O system: from simplicity via complications to simplicity. Phys. Lett. A, 1993. 176: p. 118. Granted, those were hours or days, not six months.

    So, no. This was ~100 W claimed for hours in 1993 using inferior calorimetry. But in 1994, McKubre's "replication" with better calorimetry got a watt or less with 10 W input. And in 2001 you lamented that researchers had not made the results stand out, and that Storms was planning a gala "One What / Watt? " party if he succeeded in getting one watt consistently. This almost 10 years after P&F claimed 100W.


    We will have to agree to disagree in that case. We have been over this time and again, yet neither of us have changed our stance. I still believe you guys were mean, petty and politically motivated, while you believe you were just doing your duty after having concluded within 3 weeks, that CF was a pseudoscience.

    I don't necessarily disagree that there was some meanness and political motivation. After all, no one wants to see money spent on something they regard as futile. So that represents a political motivation. I think if the government considered funding flying pigs, then meanness and political motivation would be justified.

    My objection is claiming they were dishonest and corrupt, and their entire motivation was selfish. If we can agree that they really believed that the possibility that cold fusion was real was vanishingly small, then our only disagreement is on how forcefully they were entitled to express that view.

    Input makes no difference. It is direct current, and therefore easily accounted for, and subtracted. Beiting could reduce it or eliminate it with better insulation.

    You may be satisfied with output at some fraction of the input, but as I said, I'm not. I believe if he could eliminate input he would. As you once said "... 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..." . If someone can do that without input, they surely would.


    The output from burning wood or coal does not scale with the fuel.

    The total output energy most certainly does, provided all the wood or all the coal burns; that is to say that it is all treated the same.


    The energy of a modern variable yield nuclear bomb does not scale with the fuel. It varies from 0.3 to 80 kilotons (Wikipedia) with the same amount of fuel.

    Right. The fuel is definitely and deliberately not treated the same.

    In Beiting's experiment he could have all the fuel prepared the same, and heated to the same temperature. If he claims that is what produces the heat, then it should scale, or it's not accurate to call it an energy "density".


    It [self-sustained heat] was reproduced hundreds of times! If the DoE had sent someone to France I am sure they could have seen one.

    What? It only works in one country?


    I wouldn't say the best evidence ever,

    Well you said "one of the best reports in the history of cold fusion"


    All you can do is come up with bogus reasons to reject it,

    After 30 years, I'm patient. No sense finding little errors in every new claim. If what he claims in the abstract holds up, he should have a self-sustained experiment soon. And then I'll dance in the aisles like they did when they thought Dardik's super-dooper waves produced cold fusion.

    So you think he is deceitful, although not "deliberately" so. I am sure that will give him some comfort if he ventures here.

    Semantics: I think to be deceitful is to deliberately deceive. So I don't think he is deceitful. I think a lot of people are fooled by small amounts of alleged power using small amounts of fuel.

    Not me. I stopped paying attention to him long before 5 years elapsed. I never trusted his input or output measurements

    Whether they were his or someone else's has no bearing. You wrote

    "Rossi has given out *far* more proof than any previous cold fusion researcher."


    "There are videos and data from the Oct. 6 test. That test is irrefutable by first principles."

    and I don't recall you ever denying the ecat represented evidence for LENR until the law suit commenced.

    Five years.

    That Louis, is turning the facts upside down. Making the aggressors the victims, and the victims the aggressors. How clever. Facts are, FPs, and those that followed, meekly presented what they found in their labs, and were attacked by the mainstream...of which you are part of, for simply doing what they felt was right.

    You say I turned facts upside down, and then you say nothing that contradicts what I said.

    I agree they were attacked by the mainstream, and I have no objection to your pointing that out. I object to the claim that the mainstream did it corruptly, selfishly, and dishonestly. That's what I find low. And I am using *your* argument to support my objection. If they had actually thought there was something to cold fusion, they would have been more certain than anyone that it would soon be vindicated, and therefore there is no way they would have risked their reputations by attacking it. This is why in they did *not* (for the most part) attack cold fusion in those first few weeks after the press conference. The most enduring critic and skeptic was effusively positive about cold fusion until he saw the evidence.

    Louis Reed wrote:

    "You put "to deceive" in quotes, but I did not use those words."

    You are correct. SOT said that.

    7 of 20 said it's "*not* a trick in the traditional sense of trying to deceive." The word "not" negates what you say.

    Anyway, I was just pointing out your incorrect use of quotation marks.


    Really though, is there any difference in meaning between "trick", and "deceive"?

    I would say, yes. Especially in the context I used it with reference to an old TV comedy. I was attempting a little levity with "the old small-amount-of-fuel trick". For the record, I do not think Beiting is deliberately trying to deceive anyone. But his methods serve to trick a lot of people anyway.

    The longest self sustained one I know of was about a week. Most last a few hours to a day or so.

    But presumably not sufficiently reproducible to demonstrate to the DOE, for example. A demonstration of a self-sustained nuclear reaction could hardly be denied. A claim of it on the other hand...

    And since Beiting is the new best evidence ever, those claims are inferior to his.


    Other cells would be self sustaining if you insulated them and kept them hot.

    Exactly. If the claim were valid, and they insulated, they would self-sustain. I don't believe they would not do this if they could.


    Ones in that category have run for three to six months continuously, at power levels ranging from 10 to about 100 W.

    Anything in the range of 100W for six months that's passed the minor hurdle of peer review?


    The whole discussion is ridiculous because it is easy to measure input power; we can be sure it is not causing an error; and it has no impact on the prospects for a practical device.

    And yet, for 5 years Rossi fooled you into thinking he had proved LENR by making errors in power measurement. If his claims were valid, he could have easily self-sustained, and removed doubt. He didn't because he couldn't.

    Curie showed the heat from 0.1 g of radium. She wrote that it produced "one hundred calories per hour." (https://history.aip.org/exhibits/curie/article_text.htm) That's 0.116 W. Beiting reported 9 times more than that, and many other cold fusion experiments have produced hundreds of times more than that. Yet you don't believe them. I suppose you would not believe Curie either.

    You missed two key points.

    1) There was no input heat in Curie's experiment. 0.1 W from cold fusion would be eminently believable if it went on long enough *without* input.

    2) The output *scaled* with the relevant fuel. Of course, she measured radiation, and found it scaled in some experiments uranium, and in some radium. It was the scaling that allowed her to identify the source.


    Lavoisier's instrument could measure about a half watt as I recall, so it could have easily confirmed Beiting and many others, but you would not believe it.

    If there were no input, half a watt would be convincing. Much less would be too. But when you have to separate sources of the heat, and the claimed source is less than 10%, things are more dicey, especially when it would be possible to dispense with the input, but he does not. As you said in 2001, "calorimetry errors and artifacts are more common than researchers realize".

    Anyway, it was the scaling of the heat with oxygen that made Lavoisier's contribution so compelling. Let's see if Beiting can show the heat scales with his fuel.

    Louis claimed Beiting was tricking, or making stuff up, "to deceive", not me.

    You put "to deceive" in quotes, but I did not use those words. I called it a trick because many people are tricked by it, including the scientists themselves. Many CF experiments use small amounts of the active material, and then claim high energy or power density, but those words (energy per unit volume (or mass)) suggest more energy with more volume or mass. But as McKubre laments in his abstract for ICCF, nothing scales in this field. So, I submit the entire cold fusion cast has been tricked by this kind of bumbling in the lab. McKubre is right. Until someone can show the sort of scaling that made Marie Curie and Lavoisier famous, the world will continue to ignore cold fusion.

    Pretty low of you to suggest someone of his stature, is resorting to "tricks", to make something small appear big.

    *That* you call low. You have suggested scientists of far greater stature (and far more of them) have resorted to corruptly suppressing a phenomenon that could save the planet to protect their own selfish interests. That is far lower. But my suggestion is not low at all. He's not deliberately (or successfully) tricking the world. He's tricking himself and the CF community. It's how pathological sciences roll.


    Really, do you think he would risk his reputation established over a long and industrious career, over this?

    There is no significant risk, because cold fusion will never be proven to be bogus. He may try larger amounts of fuel, and when the power fails to scale, there will be excuses -- that is, if he reports the failure. And he can certainly admit he was mistaken without admitting he was deliberately deceptive. His career will be fine.

    You want risk? Consider scientists like Lewis, Koonin, and the MIT team (and many others) who denounced cold fusion with great fervor. That would have represented real risk to their reputations if there was even a small chance cold fusion would be vindicated. Why would they have taken such a risk unless they in fact considered the possibility of vindication to be remote indeed, in which case, they acted honestly, and not corruptly. Why do you use this kind of argument only to convince yourself that cold fusion scientists are honest, but not that skeptics are honest? Double standard?

    This was marvelous:

    E. Beiting, “Investigation of the nickel-hydrogen anomalous heat effect,” Aerospace Report No. ATR-2017-01760, The Aerospace Corporation, El Segundo CA, USA, May 15, 2017.

    The problem with thermal-to-thermal claims of COP > 1 is that if they were real, it would be easy to make them self-sustain, because the nasty Carnot efficiency limit is not there. (The Carnot limit provides the excuse for not closing the loop in electrolysis experiments.)

    Beiting uses the old small-amount-of-fuel trick so popular in cold fusion research, so that a small artifact can be plausibly mistaken for heat from nuclear reactions -- that is, plausible to those who have consumed the kool-aid.

    If his fuel were producing a watt of power from nuclear reactions, then 20 times that amount of fuel at the same temperature would produce 20 watts. Now, the fuel could be sufficiently insulated so that 20 W maintained the required temperature, and so once started, the input could be turned off.

    When he's done that, the world will beat a path to his door. As always, I'm not holding my breath.

    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...


    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.


    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.


    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.

    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.


    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.


    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.


    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.

    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.


    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.

    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..