After reading that executive summary, you might read an English summary about the scientific evidences of LENR. See also the site lenrproof.com.
Les francophones peuvent lire la version initiale en français, et éventuellement aussi un article sur les preuves scientifiques des LENR traduit en frOOnçais. Vous pouvez aussi lire les transparents (Powerpoint, ou PDF) préparés par Tyler van Houwelingen et traduit gentiment par Rémy André.
What is LENR, Cold Fusion
The LENR (Low Energy Nuclear Reaction) is a more technical term for this so-called Cold Fusion.
These effects are observed at conventional temperatures (60° C-1500° C), which suggest a nuclear origin, and in any case much more energy than chemistry (50 to 1000 times more than chemicals). However it does not look like the fusion of stars, or the fission in nuclear reactors. There is almost no radioactivity, no radioactive waste, no stellar temperature ...
The word cold fusion seems there an abuse, but we are not sure really.
It officially begun around 1989 with Fleischmann & Pons experiments : an electrolysis of heavy water (deuterium) with palladium electrodes, impregnated with deuterium... Some have also electrolyzed heavy or light water, with similars metals that absorb hydrogen (forming hydride or deuterides). Results are varying, moreover sporadic, and depending on the products. A family of experiments was to make high-current electrolysis producing a plasma in water. Experiments were also made with metal films permeated by hydrogen or deuterium gas, powders, wires , often heated, electrically or indirectly (several hundred degrees).
This is the subject of controversy, which is not extinguished. Some experiments have officially discredited this area, but logical and methodological problems were identified which removes any relevance today. Since then many experiments, varied and sometimes well replicated, leave no doubt today. There is still a difficulties to publish in journals with peer review, but some have succeeded. There are criticisms, but obviously less and less serious.
The results are highly variable, but we understand better and better the causes of failures. Those causes account for most failures which have convinced the community that did not work (insufficient loading, surface condition, temperature, impurities, poisoning) ... A key seems to be the notion of active site poorly understood, but clearly linked to the surface and the crystallographic state of the surface, partially determined by impurities.
The effects depend on the reagents, but there are in the classical case heat generation. Total produced energy sometimes exceeds by several orders of magnitude, what chemistry, even unknown chemistry, could release with chemical bonds, and even with extreme crystals dislocations. It is therefore a nuclear reactions, or else more incredible things.
There was also observed transmutations, or radiation. It seems that the transmutation observed are related to the production of heat, but the radiation (gamma or neutron, small but measurable) are anti-correlated with the heat.
Among the most convincing results, there is correlation between the production of helium and heat in the classical experiments (palladium-deuterium). This type of experiments can refute doubts about calorimetry and gas detection, because errors have no reason to correlate. There are also experiments in production, and strangely consumption , of tritium (USA, India).
Among the most tested experiments, and despite a better understanding, there is an erratic success rate, which however can exceed 50%, if like ENEA you control crystallographic and chemical state of the metal. Some experiments (Navy SPAWAR, NANOR) get perfect reproducibility by controlling the surface structure of the metal.
We can make connection with the first results obtained with Germanium, erratic and whose observations were often neglected, rejected and ignored ... Again uncontrolled contamination and surface created conditions so variable that the results were undeniable and unpredictable.
There are theories, some that challenge existing theories (hydrinos, zero point energy, super-gravity...), and others who rely on the usual quantum physics, but assuming collective quantum mechanism, comparable to what is found in LASER or superconductivity (Widom-Larsen, Kim-Zubarev, Takahashi, Brillouin, Defkalion, ...) ... The most recent theories are rather conservative, although clearly lacks some keys.
For twenty years the results , compelling, sometimes huge, but erratic and unusable, discouraged research in this area. Some, such as CEA, CNAM, EPRI has stopped all work, but others like Toyota, Mitsubishi Heavy Industry, ENEA, NASA, the U.S. Navy SPAWAR, continued discreetly and more or less steadily ...
Recently researchers (Miley, Piantelli, Celani, Focardi, ...) followed a stranger path, yet ultimately successful, involving light hydrogen with nickel, at high temperature, and using nano-structured materials (micron powders, nanoscale treated foams, nanoscale treated wires).
Despite the difficulties, there is a body of a thousand refereed articles published in journals and about 8 LENR "review". The most recognized is that of Edmund Storms, published in 2010 in Naturwissenschaften. This article, like most articles on the subject is available freely at LENR-CANR.org managed by Jed Rothwell, and reading it is very instructive.
What concrete impact
Fuel density for LENR is huge, comparable to that observed for nuclear. Materials (hydrogen, nickel) are among the most common on earth, and their cost is negligible.
The need for nickel (if consumed, which is not certain) corresponds to a percent of current production, for all the world's energy. Following prices given by Rossi or Defkalion, manufactured fuel prices remain very low, and in the end it would be the price of the reactor and above all of the the turbines that will determine the price of energy. Only will count the installed capacity and not the consumption. The bill would be divided by ten. The investment cost would match roughly 6 months of total GDP for the transition.
LENR reactors do not produce significant radiation, and can be installed in the building of the heat consumer, or even one day in the appliance itself.
Conversion to electricity will be more expensive via turbines or thermoelectric converters, but the need for electricity will decrease because there will be no need to heat electrically. Moreover, most industrial installations or domestic rather use most energy as heat.
Energy is 10% of our global spending, so we just hope a productivity shock of this order. We can even expect better because various pollution, constraints and annoyances will disappear. Smokes, soot, CO2 will disappear from chimneys, and even cars. Geostrategy will relax with the end of vital oil with high prices, and therefore military spending.
Ability to produce energy locally will make the grid less vital, and the grid will be used to share and optimize infrastructure for local production. Smart-grid should be a strategic element of the electric revolution.
In the end we could imagine having LENR home boilers with a CHP mode, without cutting the grid that would serve to spread peak demand. More specific generators could be installed in the city or district, to complete.
In the countryside, people would buy a generator pair, rather than paying a line of several kilometers. In the villages, we would share a generator.
The clothe iron, like ovens or washing machines will have a small reactor for heating, or even a thermoelectric converters so no more any need to plug it.
Cars, trucks could travel 5 years without recharging, and in the garage or parking, they could provide the power they don't need to the neighbors, and maybe create a micro-economy of electricity.
Civilian or military, sea or air ships would not have to refuel, except for the crew.
Planes won't adapt easily, but there will be LENR hybrid-electric airplanes, then pure LENR ...
In poor countries, cold fusion could cause a revolution. You can cite for example desalination, but simply pumping services, pollution remediation, agricultural machinery, comfort, access to digital ....
More than applications and cost, it should be noted that this type of reactor requires a very light and local infrastructure. It costs little and mostly work. Poor countries suffer specifically today of national governance and logistics issues. The LENR could, bypassing the poor technical and policy infrastructure, allow development at the right level of local government.
Companies around LENR
It is on this breakthrough, finally giving hope of useful power and good control, that innovative companies offering to develop and commercialize soon cold fusion reactors, bloomed, followed closely by companies wanting to develop specific applications, politely watched by some large companies which are positioning themselves.
The creators of reactors
Leonardo Corporation of Andrea Rossi and his E-Cat
Andrea Rossi is a controversial industrialist and inventor. He is known to have created a process to transform waste into fuel, set up a business, which collapsed after a change of regulation about waste, with various legal matters. The process seems to be used in the USA today. Meanwhile, he had proposed to the U.S. Department of Defense to develop thermoelectric converters more efficient, with a failure as result...
2010-2011 he announced to have developed a Nickel-Hydrogen cold fusion reactor , the "e-catalyzer".
It was targeted toward the individual market, but Rossi changed strategy to focus on industrial version. Beginning of 2012 he announced he was developing a high temperature version (Hot-Cat, 1000°C) of the reactor, which would be much more efficient. He announced also having developed a gas version. Its electric reactors are able to officially produce 6 times more heat than power in, and gas version 3 times more than gas heating. The advertised price at a time that was around 1000 euro to 10kW, with some ten euro for re-charge ... the industrial price will be higher, but comparable.
It is a crazy character who made thundering announcements , loose demo where it is suspected that sometimes he hides his problems or successes, like the Wright brothers ... It tells facts wrong, to confuse competitors changes his mind ... Technically, it seems, he is making beginners mistakes or hide successes ... All this gives a disastrous image and character's credibility is reduced to zero, the faster he talks a lot.
He announced the results of tests that are expected, and in the meantime he has successfully launched controversies on internal testing, and may have discouraged a Swedish partner.
Nevertheless, he has partners. Some, such as the German partner seem not serious. Others, like the Swedish partner Hydrofusion seemed a little cold, but were positive in a publicly Swedish documentary spent early 2013. Others like Defkalion Green technologies were disgusted, and now fly on their own.
It is fortunately "Prometeon", the Italian partner, which is headed by Aldo Proia. This executive has a serious profile (a former project manager for solar projects) seems supported by serious investors that, some believe, can be the group Cipriani (without conclusive evidence, I have to admit). His interview confirmed the whimsical side of Rossi, but also clearly state that hides his success, and that his reactor works very well.
This is one of the only serious guaranty of Rossi, but a good guaranty.
Defkalion Green Technology
This company was founded by Greek expatriates investors, many from Vancouver, Canada. It was originally intended to operate a license of Rossi's E-cat. Initially Professor Stremmenos, friends of Rossi, Greek Ambassador in Italy had presented some of his friends in PASOC , like Papaandreou. But after the first contacts and first positive tests meeting, advised by some scientists, they abandoned the idea. A few weeks later, Alexandros Xanthoulis, Greek economist living in Vancouver, came with various investors to operate an E-cat license ... Rossi promised the Canadian license, and changed his intention. Defkalion under pressure from Canadia-based investors breached the contract by claiming a lack of operating time of the E-cat, in summer of 2011. Therefore Stremmenos has reacted very badly to what he perceived as a betrayal of Rossi by Defkalion. He never ceases to denigrate Defkalion since, as he elsewhere denigrate Piantelli another competitor of Rossi.
The R & D team then proposed to try to make a reactor on their own. They tested various methods, some similar to Rossi, but ultimately only one to allow good control involved the production of a plasma with electric spark-plugs in a reactor containing hydrogen and a nickel foam. End of November 2011, Defkalion announced a prototype and preliminary specifications.
Reactor power was in the 45kW for estimated 5000 euro, and a few hundred euro for annual maintenance.
Discussions with developers on their forum suggests competent , and somewhat excited engineers. Alexandros Xanthoulis communication also leaves a feeling of enthusiasm, which opposes his obviously very "corporate" style.
In January 2012 they announced a call for testing by third parties, which would lead to a result in late April2012 ... But things have been delayed. In the summer during the annual National Instruments 2012 and the ICCF17 they presented a paper describing their results, some transmutations, outline of their methods, but not yet third-party results. They also explained that they had endurance problems with spark-plugs that explained some delays. They also discussed about 6 patents on various points.
They also announced that their partners refused to work with them in Greece because of the collapse of the country, and they were moving to Canada in Vancouver.
In November 2012 they published a badly anonymized report, directed by Michael A. Nelson, a researcher at NASA, working here for an NGO about alternative energy. Nelson had made about him in lambasting the testing protocol, and especially the behavior, of Rossi during his tests. In contrast, with Defkalion he seemed to enjoy the freedom during reactor test. The result was modest (+200% of energy compared to additional input, but with justifications related to the low temperature of operation).
This December 2012, Defkalion moved to Vancouver for 3 years, and an article in an important Greek magazine ("To Vima") presents this new company, its technology and projects. According to the article, they were approached by almost all developed countries have dozens of partners and contacts for varied transport applications . Oil company seem quite positive towards them. The company reactivated its website in February 2013 and get out slowly from his silence.
Brillouin Corporation is headed by Robert Godes. They announced the creation of a reactor based on a theory (using the "Brillouin zones") developed by Godes. Their first reactor, wet, has been validated by the SRI with indisputable performance ("+100%") but still not usable". They work with the SRI, a non-profit research center aimed at developing local industry around Stanford, who did the tests. They develop a new "dry" reactor with better performance.
Godes is quite critical about Rossi and Defkalion, who he accused of not understanding how to activate the reaction. He says that his theory gives him the ability to control the reaction at will.
This company is less talkative than others, but seems on track to compete with the two previous ones.
Blacklight Power is a company that aims to develop reactors using the "hydrinos" theory of Mills . This theory is highly controversial because it challenges the current physics.
They have recently announced managed to develop hydrinos reactors producing electricity directly without thermodynamics conversion . The device is been discussed in reports by some individual researchers who observed it and confirm it works.
Direct electrical conversion is a great hope, but the fact that this phenomenon has not been reproduced by others may leave us skeptical. Great caution is required before clear evidence is presented.
Lenuco is a company created to commercialize the technology Dr. Miley. Its first application is the replacement of radioisotope generator of spacecraft for NASA.
Lenuco has since applied to ARPA-E funding for a 10kW home co-generator, but failed.
Jet Energy is a company which is currently trying to commercialize Professor Hagelstein NANOR. During ICCF17 they explained the importance of this small device the size of a resistor, capable of producing 10 times more energy than it receives (40-80 was claimed later in January 2013 during IAP courses at MIT), for laboratories seeking to understand and validate the cold fusion.
Nichenergy is a company created by Piantelli to sell Nickel-Hydrogen reactor technology , based on his work. We have little information.
A patent by Piantelli, recently granted for a reactor using nickel powder, drew criticism from Rossi and his friends Stremmenos.
University of Missouri and Energetics Technologies
Robert Duncan a boss of the University of Missouri had agreed to expertise on behalf of CNBC and its "60 minutes" show, the claims of cold fusion of an Israeli company : "Energetics Technologies." Initially skeptical, he became since an active supporter. The next conference on cold fusion (ICCF18) will be held in his university.
Since then the activity of LENR patents and Energetics Technologies was acquired by the university, which continues the in-house developments.
Startups companies, wishing to use the reactors
Besides the companies proposing to develop a reactor, others propose to use them to revolutionize some areas.
LENR Cars is a Swiss startup founded by a serial innovator: Nicolas Chauvin. It aims to create a car based on Cold Fusion, beginning first with an electric car hybridized with cold fusion, then developing less and less hybrid models.
Their first idea would be to put a cold fusion reactor in a Tesla-S, whose batteries are recharged by thermoelectric converters. He is currently working to replicate the work of Celani in the Martin Fleischmann Memorial Project.
An article in the past AGEFI Geneva where we learn that it is funded by the founder of Logitech, who is also enthusiastic. They evoke discussions with automakers Tesla and PSA (Peugeot-Citroen). Another similar article in "Le Temps" reports some opposition of one EPFL hot-fusion physicist.
Kresenn is a British startup aiming at developing autonomous data center with cold fusion. Its founders are Italian. They work with Celani.
LENR Cities is an initiative launched by Michel Vanderberghe (France) and Didier Pelluet (Switzerland), which aims to create a networks of innovative businesses, and to partner with local businesses, to be able to change the market and use energy at the local scale. This economic model is theorized under the title "The Business Factory."
Michel Vanderberghe joined the initiative Martin Fleischmann Memorial Project.
In addition to these innovative small businesses, some large companies have a strategy that is leaking, when they don't fill the screen.
This company that sells electronic laboratory instruments recently called cold fusion as "guest star" for its annual conference, NIWeek 2012. : 4 presentations on Cold Fusion, a panel with reactor manufacturer (Brillouin, Defkalion) and researchers (Takahashi of Toyota / Technova), and a public demonstration of a small demonstration reactor by Celani. It all culminated with the conference of founder "Truchard," who announced the coming revolution, and how National Instrument was supporting those new "Edison".
Before NIWeek, Stefano Concezzi, the director of "Big Physics" (clients linked to heavy physics experiments like LHC, ITER, ...) gave a conference in Brussels and Rome, where he announced that his company have made double-blind replication of cold fusion experiments by ten laboratories, and that they were supporting cold fusion researchers.
This communication strategy, whereas cold fusion is an infinitesimal client for NI, suggests that this is a strategy to acquire an image of a pioneer in an industry that will soon no more be ostracized.
ST Microelectronics has recently validated the work of Celani in his lab, and there was identified employees of the company or subsidiary (STNewVentures) at a conference in Siena.
Toyota / Technova
When Fleischmann has been lynched by the scientific community, he was hired by Toyota. The results were not very interesting. But research continues in Japan, particularly in the Technova laboratory in Kobe where work Professor Takahashi.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industry
Mitsubishi also continues to do research on cold fusion. One of his great results was performed by Iwamura: proof of transmutation during the permeation of hydrogen in thin films of metals. They presented the results at the American Nuclear Society this winter, end of 2012. Toyota researchers confirmed replication.
Italian and French company, oil exploration subsidiary of ENI, has been identified as present in a few Conference on Cold Fusion.
Shell was quoted as present at the workshop ICMNS in Siena in 2012.
Shell through its innovative "ShellGamechanger" would be interested in cold fusion after Defkalion in the last article of "To Vima" (a well known Greek newspaper - "The Tribune").
Exxon according to Defkalion in the article "To Vima" would be interested in acquiring a Defkalion, when the time comes ...
Some employees have been seen in LENR conference.
Professional body representing professional American electricity, has recently made a small test report positive but unconvincing on cold fusion.
American Nuclear Society
This organization which brings together professional of nuclear industry invited Steven Krivit to present cold fusion and Widom-Larsen theory at its winter conference. Mitsubishi Heavy Industry also presented Iwamura results and confirmed replication by Toyota.
A new presentation will be done late February 2013 by Miley and al.
The year 2013, will you it the year of Cold Fusion
When one observe news around LENR, he is shocked by the difference between feverish activity, thundering announcements , validations which multiply the circumstantial evidences of 'business' credibility ... and outside the dead silence in Orthodox Thought.
Will the year 2013 be the year you will see these two worlds come together in a large general curtain removal on cold fusion.
Some older researchers, don't dare to believe it, since they were so many time disappointed before.
Hearing the same litany of obsolete facts repeated, ignorance of the facts older than 20 years, the rejection of any debate, self-referent reasoning, we can estimate that the scientific debate in public will never be possible .
Yet a closer look the situation is different. Hitherto hopes came from scientific experiments that should have convinced rational minds, long ago. But here there is a movement of entrepreneurs and innovators, of large companies worried and looking for any opportunity or risk. All human passion come together to consider the Cold Fusion as an opportunity to catch or at least, not to miss.
The devil came out of the box and nothing can make it go back in.