I have sent an email to Firshein/Tanzella to get an update. I'll keep you all posted.
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2. There are two ways to make money with cold fusion: IP, or actually manufacturing and selling machines. Brillouin cannot manufacture machines in competition with GE. GE has millions of times more equipment, expertise, and capabilities than Brillouin. The core cold fusion technology is only a small part of what is needed to make a product. It is like the CPU chip in a computer. It may be the most important part, but there are many other parts. Along these lines, Rossi's claim that he will manufacture things is ridiculous.
The chip model is a perfect example, as Brillouin envisions to imitate Intel rather than building machines. We are in agreement on that, and I absolutely believe that big conglomerates will integrate the technology in their machines. I don't see Brillouin making LENR planes and cars!
The companies will know they must introduce this. Many people will have the opposite reaction. They will go into a tizzy. Because it is nuclear. They will demand that no reactor be allowed within a hundred miles of any city or town. Heck, they will say this must be banned worldwide, immediately, forever. I will be very surprised if there are not full page ads and editorials demanding that, surreptitiously paid for by the oil companies. Whether it is actually dangerous or not, many people will go ape shit and assume it is something like a portable thermonuclear bomb that might wipe out a city at any moment. They are bound to think that. And . . . the fact is, at this stage, no expert can be sure it cannot explode. Fleischmann and Teller worried that it might. Can you be sure they were wrong? We better find out!
Funny but I don't see it that way. Maybe because I am French and nuclear power has always been a part of my life. Also I think the fear of global warming will facilitate adoption of LENR that will appear as a miracle that needs to be implemented as soon as possible.
But you may absolutely be right on that.
JedRothwell: I don't think we are dealing with FDA levels of red tape, and most of that red tape would be related to the commercialization of LENR devices to consumers, which no one is currently seriously contemplating at this stage. I am ready to be proven wrong but I do not think new industrial machines require the level of research you are suggesting. Maybe you know much more about this than me but unless your product is destined to consumers, I am pretty sure rules are much more lax than what you seem to think.
"No one can compete with GE and Toyota" is the kind of statement that makes little to no sense to me. It's clearly false (GE is a mess, for one). R&D departments of big conglomerates are actually not as impressive as you seem to think. Just take the pharmaceutical industry, one of the most R&D intensive sectors, and you'll see that they keep buying start-ups at insane prices because no one in their right minds would develop a billion dollar idea as an employee. Industrial megafirms can provide incremental progress, but they are not places where breakthrough technologies actually thrive. Which explains why the most valuable companies in the world are mostly relatively young companies.
On potential safety issues, we're going to have a hard time coming to an agreement. My argument is just that if a non-consumer product has not proven to be dangerous, it will not be required to be proven to be absolutely safe. The burden of proof shifts when it comes to consumer products because of potential backlash. And there are countries in which even consumers product are lightly regulated.
JedRothwell: All your points are very sound and I do agree with you that it would be pretty hard to commercialize an LENR device and say "we have no idea how it works but it does so f*** it." But, on the other hand, almost no one understands the devices we use every day. Our relationship with technoscience is mostly "I don't know how it works but someone somewhere does and that's enough for me to trust it", which is quite close to religion, in a way. And I think we have that attitude because, deep down, we know that we are finite beings and don't understand what we are, how we work and what our purpose is, so ignorance, as long as it is covered with the pretence of knowledge, is acceptable to us.
I am sure that, if one day LENR power becomes available, almost no one will care whether or not the theory behind it is an adequate representation of reality, as long as we can put our trust in someone who says he understands it. And I am sure a theory will be provided to reassure people with the existence (but not the understanding) of a reason why it works (let's hope BLP does not succeed, cause their theory sounds bonkers and Randell Mills would become the Messiah).
On risk/safety, I have to say that I am of the opinion that, if you take out crazies such as antivax and all their cohorts, people are mostly only afraid of things that will kill them violenty and in the near future. LENR devices do not create that kind of danger. At this stage, it does not even appear to generate radiation, so I have a hard time seeing what potential safety issue you are speaking of.
One side-note: I do agree about all your points on economic consequences of LENR. If you has asked people of the early 1800's what steampower was going to change, they would probably have said that it was going to put windmills and watermills out of business. Like any other transformative technology, it will destroy entire sectors of the economy and create new activities. What we can try to show, and it takes a lot of work, is the sectors it will destroy, and the human capital that will be freed by such destruction. But as for new activities, who knows? What can be done with that much inexpensive power? Only time can tell.
How can you license a technology when no one knows how it works, and when there has not been a single safety test?!? That's absurd. This is a nuclear reactor that operates by unknown principles. It is the most revolutionary invention in recorded history. And they are treating it as if it was an improved formula for window washing fluid.
I am not sure I completely agree with that. Mankind has used things without understanding how they worked for most of its existence. The idea that you must first understand the theory of something prior to using it is entirely divorced from most of the human existence. We do not even understand how our own brains work and yet we soldier on. People made fire and they did not know about basic chemistry. Damascus steel was produced for centuries and we do not even know today how that was done. Maybe you are right and Brillouin’s reactors, if successful, will be prohibited because the physics behind them remains controversial, but that does not sound as sure to me as what you seem to imply.
Moreover, you seem to believe that things first need to be demonstrated to be safe prior to their commercialization. Frankly I am not sure of that: we daily ingest tons of chemicals that most probably explain the modern rise of cancer and that does not seem to have caused the government to prohibit all chemicals until it has been proven that they are safe. We use smartphones and I don’t think it has been proven without a doubt that they are safe for human beings. Alcohol and tobacco are sold and their dangerous effects are known without a doubt. We are currently destroying the planet with carbon emissions and any tentative to stop that has been a failure.
Mankind is much less risk-adverse than what you seem to think. If a machine is shown to provide tremendous benefits and has not proven to be incredibly dangerous (at this stage, no one is dead from radiation poisoning at Brillouin), it will not be prohibited for safety reasons.
Maybe I am wrong on this. And I can tell you that investment documentation in Brillouin does list regulation as a significant risk. So they are aware of that.
On the various questions, suggestions or doubts you may have on the SRI report, I would suggest the same thing I proposed to THHuxley earlier. Write them down and I’ll do what I can to forward them to Tanzella.
JedRothwell: I do see your point Jed, and I actually believe it does square somewhat with what Brillouin is trying to do.
Their licenses with third-parties that will incorporate their technology are partnerships with big companies with lots of money. They only have to deliver prototypes to those companies to get enough money to raise their COP through the roof. And while those prototypes require a certain COP to be reached, we’re talking about 3X-4X, that is to say something extremely close to where they are right now.
Those prototypes are your “impractical” devices. Brillouin is not looking to get stuck in an R&D trap. It is looking to get enough money to build a device that will trigger payments under their licenses.
Provided they do not die for lack of funding in the next two years and they reach a COP that seems extremely reasonable considering the progress they have been making, they should succeed.
As I have said above there are two main risks: one is that their calorimetry is flawed and they are actually not producing any COP, and the other is that they do not get funding and close shop.
What I'd really like to hear are some ideas from Brillouin about how they can increase the COP of their system. I have my own ideas, but I wish they would share their own.
If you read the SRI report, you’ll find that they will only share those ideas with people who have signed an NDA, which seems reasonable to me.
There can be shades between the MY view and the misguided dreamer view. Rossi (according to one reading) occupies such a space where he clearly lies through his teeth about many things, clearly devises complex false positive experiments, but could nevertheless believe parts of his own spin. If so it would make him much more convincing, but having said that, those who are consciously and clearly dishonest can in some cases also be very believable, so those who think Rossi knows well his stuff does not work at all and is completely cynical, laughing at his followers, also have a tenable case.
One only needs to look at Holmes and Theranos to agree with you. There does exist a space where people convince themselves that the false proof they create is necessary for the greater good of getting their crucial idea funded and eventually realized. And that is of course one of the great risk in investing in start-ups.
I'd suggest that instead they spend $200K on independent research to check, test, and improve the SRI instrumentation and calorimetry assumptions.
The problem is that the SRI reports are already independent research, and are being ignored/dismissed by people for dogmatic reasons rather than technical questions. There is really no certainty for Brillouin that another report by another independent research institute would convince people that what they have is real. Which is why they are going for proof through commercialization.
I made my own investment mostly on the basis of such reports, and of confirmation by non-LENR people that Tanzella was neither dishonest nor incompetent as the main issue that is often raised is that Tanzella is biased because of his own research in LENR.
If you are really interested in the question, getting in touch with Tanzella is not that hard and could probably be arranged.
Don't worry, they won't. It's the last thing Godes would like else he would have arranged for it long before now-- remember that the claimed results 4 years ago are essentially the same as now. And I suspect they will be same 4 years from now, still unverified. BLP is the model for Brillouin.
You have made a lot of references to the fact that the results are the same as the results four years ago, and I feel they have not been properly adressed. You are indeed right that Brillouin claims that they reached 4X in 2015 but an impressive section of the investment documentation is dedicated to explaining how this result was achieved and why it could not be replicated (I am not sure all this has been told by Brillouin in public communication so I won't say more). Of course you might say that they are scammers and that those explanations are lies, but their willingness to be transparent about those results and their inability to build on them is part of the transparency that distinguishes Brillouin from other LENR companies.
This 4X result also explains part of the overly optimistic predictions of 2015.
Dr Richard: From what I gather from the information I was provided, the Hydrogen Hot Tubes used for the optimization of COP are the Isoperibolic HHTs referred to in the SRI Report (which were designed to provide precise calorimetry for the purposes of calibration), but these IPB HHTs are not commercial prototypes. Once Brillouin has reached 4X COP, they will scale up the IPB HHT into commercial HHT prototypes (which should be closer to the "Conflat HHTs" described in the SRI Report) that will produce a much larger amount of heat.
Moreover, an HHT Boiler will have several of such Commercial HHTs inside it.
Skip the article and read the comments. Godes is a little fired up.
I'll reproduce it below as I found that discussion quite interesting.
Robert E. Godes: "The truly green SMR of the future will be based on Brillouin Energy Corp. CECR technology. As a chemical fuel, two H2+O2 yields only 4.8eV in the formation of two water molecules, i.e., 2(H2O), as compared with Brillouin Energy's CECR reaction, that yield ~27,000,000eV., from two H2 molecules. No radio active input, uses Nickel as a nuclear catalyst, and no radioactive waste. The reaction must be driven and can not run away. It can be driven to destruction, the point where the nickel melts, but there is no danger from penetrating radiation. At the end of the reactors life it can be completely recycled as soon as it cools to room temperature."
Asterix: "Robert, I'll believe that BEC really has something when they introduce a self-sustaining unit with no external energy inputs. That always seems to be the golden ring that everyone is going for, isn't it?"
Robert E. Godes: "Yes, and apparently in the meantime you'll do your best to prevent funding it would allow that to happen. Good luck to you. I don't need luck I believe in hard work. That's how I've gotten to 2.7 X and now have a second Catalyst tube over 2X. It's just unfortunate that it is taken 10 years to get this far on the shoestring budgets we've been forced to operate with due to people like yourself."
Asterix: "You overestimate my power to prevent or encourage anything. I stated what it would take to make me a believer--surely you can't fault me for stating my position."
Robert E. Godes: "Well I'm curious why you won't believe a completely independent third-party like Stanford Research International (SRI). You apparently have no idea the cost involved in the engineering to build such a system, let alone the materials and machining. Last week we had a group of investors tell us one of their dads was a professor at UC Berkeley in the physics department. Said Professor told them there was no possible way cold fusion could work. That statement was made without even looking at the data. Science is supposed to be driven by data not Dogma. This was the reason Julian Schwinger, a Nobel Laureate and deeply involved in the development of the standard model, resigned from the APS when they refused to even look at a paper he had written on the subject."
PieEconomics: "Robert, how high a COP do you figure you'll need to get self-looping, and what additional funding do you estimate will be needed to achieve that? Assuming adequate funding, what time frame would you estimate until self-looping?"
Robert E. Godes: "Thank you for a very astute question. Just to run the system and provide lower level waste heat for end use. 6X. At that point the only cost for access to that waste heat is the capital cost over the life of the device. This will not be an inexpensive unit to design or build but may be worthwhile for some use cases. Economically viable delivery of electricity starts at 10X.
The primary problem that need to be solved at this point is the manufacturing engineering. We have a 13 tab spreadsheet detailing the use of funds and and a project schedule that will put us at commercial viability with a minimum of $15MM and 24 months after we have access to that capital. $15MM may or may not get us to 10X required for electricity generation but there are many markets worth billions of dollars by the time you get to 4x and that is an under promise over deliver number. I think there is a 60% chance we would achieve 10X with that $15MM.
If the goal is a self looping / powering system the under promise over deliver number is $25MM."
Godes here clearly highlights the current goal of Brillouin. Getting to a COP that is sufficient to begin commercialization in the heat market and use the revenue from that to get to higher COPs and expand to new markets.
In other news, the test results page from Brillouin (https://brillouinenergy.com/test-results) has been updated with March results. No huge progress but they've reached 2.7 COP in their latest test.
Edit: Also, it looks like they are about to release the final SRI Report.
For example, read this total nonsense from 2012 by Godes as interviewed in "Cold Fusion Now" -- a misnomer for sure. https://coldfusionnow.org/tag/brillouin-boiler/
You know what SoT, I’ll give you this. Early communication by Brillouin was overly optimistic. But once SRI became involved, claims started getting reasonable (in itself a good sign that the partnership with SRI was smart). I am pretty sure some investors also played a role in toning down the predictions.
If you look at Brillouin’s communication for the last three years, you’ll see that it’s been much more conservative. If you’re a scammer in the LENR field, announcing 2.6 CoP makes no sense considering what others are claiming.
LCC We give commenters a fair bit of latitude here, and 7 of 20 is a very well-known skeptic. Don't take it personally.
My apologies to 7of20 and others if I seemed to take it personally.
I’ll say it another way : if I had invested in the basis of that video, you would be right to call me gullible. And if Brillouin only gave information of that level, it would be a scam, as it would only seek gullible people.
But I truly think no one invests on this basis, and I know of experience that they give a lot more information to people who reach them for investing.
This type of claim is why I don't trust Brillouin to have anything. This now gives me reason to suspect they may not in reality be honest. Fred Z calls it right in his YouTube comment. That these people are getting investor money on the claims in this video is completely unconscionable and people who invest based on such claims are completely gullible.
You’re being extremely hard on the basis of a promotional video that is just intended to get investors interested in Brillouin.
Frankly, if you believe accredited investors (even as small as myself) are going to invest significant amounts on the basis of a video such as that one, you are obviously wrong.
I have related above the level of access that was given to me prior to my investment. I can assure you that the investment documentation is extremely clear and states all the risks of such an investment. I really think name calling is not warranted at this stage and not on the basis of a one minute video.
So can you go to the Guernsey stock exchange and buy IH shares?
It seems like it should be the case but I cannot find for the life of me any way to do so. Apparently trades must go through a Trading Member of TISE but I cannot find any Trading Member website offering to act as a broker.
What I think happened is that Woodford had the shares listed but did not offer any for sale, which is normally impossible in the civilized world but this is Guernsey so everything seems possible. For all purposes (except the one that really mattered to Woodford) IH is still a private company.
I am a (French) corporate lawyer so I'll tell you what I understand from it.
As a fund, Equity Income cannot hold more than 10% of its capital in unlisted companies. In order to circumvent that limitation without having to organize complicated IPOs (and provide the high level of disclosure required to the public), Woodford has been listing its biggest holdings in unlisted companies on bogus regulated markets (no offence to the International Stock Exchange in Guernsey, but its disclosure level is laughable because it does not have to comply with EU regulation).
Just look at the information available in relation to IH (https://www.tisegroup.com/market/companies/6810) and let me know if you feel sufficiently informed