In reply to  Jones Beene's message of Wed, 16 Sep 2020 00:51:24 +0000 (UTC):

If the electrons are shrunken, then they may well tunnel along with the 
protons, making an enhanced electron capture
process possible. A possibility which you may recall I first posted here in the 
thread "Mizuno phenanthrene paper
uploaded" on 3 Dec. 2008. (previously suggested in private correspondence to 
Mike Carrell on 14 Nov. 2002).

However it surprises me that the whole bound molecule tunnels rather than a 
single proton/atom.
I find it even further surprising that this happens with something as large as 
n=1/4, and that two EC reactions occur. I
would have thought one would at least occasionally see that only one or no EC 
reactions occurred.
Depending on the target nucleus, there should be some combinations where 
capture of one or more protons would lead to a
more stable nucleus than capture of two neutrons? Odd numbered nuclei might be 
an interesting starting point. E.g. Al27,
since capture of a proton here yields the very stable Silicon. Also desirable 
since Al27 is so common in the Earth's
crust. If two neutrons are captured, then a good starting point would be light 
isotopes of even numbered nuclei. E.g.
O16 + H*-H* -> O18 + 10.6 MeV. Both start and final isotopes are stable, and 
O16 is plentiful. H2O => O18? :)

Perhaps the electron shrinks during the capture process, providing better 
shielding to the proton(s)? If so, I wonder if
there is a threshold shrinkage level where this collapse begins?

>Think about the implications of dense hydrogen in the role of binding and 
>reacting with another (larger) nucleus as if were two neutrons. This is 
>completely new physics.
>Such a discovery would open an entirely new world of overlooked nuclear 
>reactions which were never given much hope before. It could make nuclear 
>fission the top energy source once again, in the grand scheme of things and 
>rid us of the false expectation that nuclear fusion has a real future. It is 
>simply too expensive. 
>However we cannot gauge probabilities yet, and all of this is speculative. It 
>would be essential to know the cross-section of various element (for 
>absorption of H*-H*)  so as to determine the commercially valuable products 
>and isotopes. It might be possible to get more in value from new isotopes than 
>from the excess heat of hydrogen densification... or it all could be used 
>together so that fission energy becomes far more attractive than before.
>Here is one kind of potential reaction that you may not have thought about. 
>Thorium based.
>If the H*-H* acts like two neutrons with thorium as a target, one might expect 
>to convert 232Th into 234Th which has a short half-life and goes to 234Pa and 
>then to 234U. Now 234U is interesting in a surprising way if it can be made 
>cheaply, even though it is NOT fissile. Well, technically. it is not fissile - 
>but it can be viewed as virtually fissile.
>The hidden value of 234U would be because it has a long half life plus a known 
>and very large cross section for neutrons. Thus in a reactor it would almost 
>immediately become 235 U which is probably the best of all uranium isotopes. 
>Thus a breeder reactor becomes very feasible possibly with natural U.
>In short although this is a naive possibility given that we have so little 
>data to look at - the H*-H* having similar reactivity to 2n - that would be 
>extremely important in framing a revival of fission, and who knows what else?

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