At 05:46 AM 2/22/2011, Joshua Cude wrote:

On Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 10:34 PM, Abd ul-Rahman Lomax <<>> wrote:

Excess heat is an experimental result.

Excess heat is an interpretation of experimental results.

Sure. So are all experimental results that aren't just dumps of raw data.

If it is the result of an artifact, it should be possible to identify the artifact.

Maybe, but it takes time and effort. Time and effort that skeptics are not inclined to commit because they do not find the results compelling enough.

Great. But "skeptics" will devote great time and effort to ridiculing others who do spend time actually performing those experiments, trying to ensure that work is not published, that journals which publish the work are attacked, attempts being made to get editors fired, getting a patent examiner fired because he organized an alternative energy conference, and filling the internet with obviously bogus theories that radically contradict experimental evidence, all the while claiming that it's the others who are guilty of Bad Science.

Don't find results compelling, fine! Then ignore them!

If the result is not an artifact, the thinking goes, a better experiment should be possible.

It is always possible to design a better experiment. Joshua, look at P13/P14 from McKubre's work. The chart shown on p. 2 of the Hagelstein review paper is from that. Notice on the abscissa of that chart the scale in hours. And then realize how much time it takes to run work like that. And then sit back and suggest "better experiments" to the people who are actually running them. McKubre was not working for you, he was working for the Electric Power Research Institute, and he did his job. Convincing you was not part of his job. It still is not part of his job.

This is the point, Joshua: There are hundreds of researchers who have reported significant anomalous heat from palladium deuteride.

The large number is actually disturbing.

Right. CF researchers can't win. If there are just a few experiments, they are cherry-picked and just a handful of fanatics. If there are hundreds, well, obviously this is poor work.

So many experiments, and they never get better. They can't come up with one that captures the attention of mainstream.

Perhaps there is no "mainstream" with a brain. People are people, they mostly act like ... people. Once they have made up their mind about something, they tend to not look back. That's the norm, Joshua. And scientists are ... people. Only a few are willing to set aside their "prior work" and look anew.

You have not disclosed anything about yourself. What's your history with this topic?

They can't make an isolated device that generates heat. In fact, consistent with other pathological science, the size of the effect (with the exception of the dubious Rossi device) has become smaller over the years. Science doesn't work that way. Pathological science does.

This is simply not true, again. It's a common claim. This is the way this works:

1. A characteristic of pathological science is that as measurement accuracy is increased, results become less significant.
2. Cold fusion is pathological science.
3. It has happened that some cold fusion results disappeared when errors were fixed and measurement accuracy was fixed.
4. Therefore "the size of the effect has become smaller over the years."

The effect I'm nost concerned about is heat/helium. That's been measured over the years. The first results gave only a power of ten for helium, the measurements were crude and difficult, because of the presence of confounding D2, which has almost the same mass as He-4.

Those results gave helium within an order of magnitude of the value expected for deuterium fusion as the source of excess heat.

This work has been repeated with increased accuracy. The result is that the experimental value got closer to the 23.8 MeV figure expected for deuterium fusion. There is no contrary experimental evidence.

Notice that this result does not depend on "reliability" of the excess heat effect. It only requires that helium be measured in the same experiments as excess energy. Notice, "excess energy," i.e., integrated excess power.

It's like hundreds of thousands of alien and ufo sightings, but none quite good enough to be convincing. The better the photography, the less convincing the image.

Great. However, what I've seen is the opposite. The better the experimental techniques, the clearer the image. Deuterium fusion is what I see in this camera.

My question to you is, it seems that you believe there is no excess heat. From what does this belief stem?

You haven't been listening. From the absence of any progress. From the inability to generate heat indefinitely from and isolated device.

But that's not relevant. Muon-catalyzed fusion is accepted as real without any progress at all, along the lines you suggest.

It's accepted as real because of two reasons: it was predicted by theory, and the neutrons were observed and correlated with muon flux (I assume). Deuterium fusion in PdD is accepted as real, by those who know the evidence, without being predicted by theory, because heat and helium, two products, were observed and correlated.

If that is all that is behind your belief, you would reject much of science, where things are discovered and reported and known and accepted, without theory; theory comes later, and without theory, often, it's difficult to do good engineering. If we are lucky with something, effects can be and have been used without knowing how and why. Indeed, about everything we do with people involves a lack of theory....

Most likely, if you are reasonable, you think that there is something that appears to be excess heat, fooling the researchers. But, "something" is not a scientific explanation. If there is something fooling this many researchers, it should be possible to figure out what it is. Lots of people have tried, you know. However, did they try hard enough?

Most people gave up trying a long time ago. Most no longer care what the something is or what the many things are. They are satisfied that if there is excess heat, someone will find a way to demonstrate it conclusively, with an isolated device that generates heat indefinitely.

I don't understand, I'll say, what this has to do with understanding the world, the project of science. It has to do with engineering. Further, such a device, as described, would seem to violate the laws of thermodynamics. I don't think it's possible. In theory, a CF device might be able to run for a long time with little fuel, but not "indefinitely." Further, there is a problem, and it's, in a way, similar to the problem of hot fusion.

For hot fusion, the temperatures involved tend to destroy the confinement that would make fusion possible. How do you contain stuff that is so hot. Theoretically, magnetic confinement and the like, but instabilities.... so far, no cigar, billions of dollars later.

With cold fusion, fusion taking place inside a lattice seems to take place only at isolated sites, and the reaction, it appears, destroys those sites. Material that works for CF stops working. Arata cells seem to most closely satisfy Joshua's desire. Load a small pressure cell with 7 grams of nanoparticle palladium or palladium in a matrix of zirconium oxide. Evacuate and dry the cell and then load deuterium gas into the cell. The cell temperature elevates, as it does with hydrogen, from the heat of formation of palladium deuteride (hydride). With hydrogen, however, the cell temperature returns to ambient within an hour -- this is an insulated cell, it loses heat slowly. With deuterum, the cell temperature remains at 4 degrees C above ambient, and at 3000 minutes, it's still sitting at that temperature with no sign of decline. Steady heat.

No, try to quantify this from the experimental data that Arata gives, to understand how much heat is really being generated.and you'll find some imprortant information missing. I think the NRL has replicated this work, though.

I don't find any way to explain the Arata results other than fusion. Someone else may figure something out. I do know that substantial research is going on that builds on the basic Arata effect, but not a great deal has been published yet.

What does Joshua want? Someone to make a kilogram of nanoparticle palladium and run this with it? That's about $30,000 worth of palladium, plus what would be some very substantial processing costs. This thing would, I strongly suspect, get pretty warm if you load it with deuterium. And what would this show? *The same thing as smaller scale experiments.*

If you are thinking, Joshua, that to be of interest, CF experiments should demonstrate commercial viability, you should just go away, immediately. That day may never come. Or it might, if ... this or that happens. For sure, if everyone thought like you, it would not happen. Someone has to take an interest in "anomalies," or we'd never learn anything new, we'd never learn anything that conflicted with existing "knowledge."

But CF does not conflict with existing knowledge, it merely indicates that there is something unknown. The conflict is with the private interest of some physicists, employed in or affected by employment in hot fusion research. I have no idea that Joshua has any affiliation with these, and he is probably just one of those internet blow-hards who get off on showing how stupid everyone else is..... I was hoping for better. I was disappointed.

Cold fusion is often classed with N-rays and polywater, but in each of those examples, the artifact was rather quickly found, once there were enough people looking and running controlled experiments.

Actually an artifact was not found for N-rays. Wood failed to reproduce the results, and debunked them by sabotaging Blondlot's experiment, effectively forcing a blinded experiment, and proving cognitive bias. In spite of the debunking, Blondlot continued to be convinced of N-rays for another 20 years.

The experiment that Wood arranged confirmed N-rays. I.e., the observers reported them. Then the revelation of alternation demonstrated that the "cognitive bias," which may or may not be an accurate description. If you have spent much time looking at a spinthariscope, with vision at the limits of dark adaptation, you could understand that it can be hard to interpret the "noise."

In any case, there are also examples of marginal disciplines that will likely never be accepted by science, and never be disproven to the satisfaction of its adherents. Homeopathy and perpetual motion are two examples. Not all fields are the same.

Perpetual motion has no consistent base at all, it is not a theory, has no theoretical basis. Homeopathy is complicated, because of a possible enhancement of the placebo effect, which may be far more sophisticated than we ordinarily assume. More to the point might be astrology.

None of these are accepted for routine publication in mainstream journals with anything remotely approaching the frequency of cold fusion. None of them have objective evidence for them with anything like that available for cold fusion. Joshua has been simply waving away the evidence by claiming that there is none.

I've seen no willingness to seriously consider any of it. Therefore, I conclude, he's just trolling.

When scientists do not believe an effect is present, they have no motivation to waste their time trying to find other people's mistakes. At least in the case of N-rays, the time required was minimal. Wood complained he had wasted a whole morning on the experiment, before he was enlisted to go to France for his famous sabotage. You can't do CF in a morning, and sabotage is not as simple in CF. A credible double-blind test in CF would be telling, but it would require the cooperation of believers and skeptics, something not likely to happen.

Was the artifact ever identified with cold fusion, Joshua? You seem to believe that there must be one. But what does the preponderance of the evidence show at this time? How would you judge?

Like N-rays, it may just be cognitive bias. The preponderance of evidence, the absence of progress, the diminishing size of the effect, suggest the absence of excess heat.

"The preponderance of evidenc" is an assertion that is not based on any weighing of the evidence. Like "the diminishing size of the effect," it's not true, it is not based on review of the literature. The "absence of progress" is only defined with respect to an artificial and nonscientific standard, and, my guess, when new progress is demonstrated, Joshua will simply move the goalposts. Remember a "cup of tea"? It became two cups.

The tea could be brewed with excess heat that is demonstrated. That's actually an easy one. But would it prove anything to anyone? I doubt it. So I wouldn't waste my time setting up that demo. Depending on the technique, it might be pretty expensive.

And how can you explain the helium correlation, that magically happens to appear at the right value for fusion? (Huizenga was amazed that it was within an order of magnitude of that value, Miles' helium measurements were relatively crude compared to what was done later.)

I don't believe there is excess heat, and I don't believe there is a correlation with helium. Miles measurements were relatively crude, but judging by peer-review, they were the best so far. The only more recent peer-reviewed results admit helium is not definitive.

Eh? That's entirely contrary to the Storms review, so .... prove it. Miles was, in fact, about the crudest work done in this field, he's important because he did what he could with what he had available, and he ran a lot of cells, and he was first to establish the rough Q-value.

"The best so far" is other work, mostly work by McKubre.

"I don't believe there is a correlation with helium" is pure assertion without basis in fact. It makes Joshua's "beliefs" into the topic. Okay. I get it. Joshua does not believe, but it's obviously more than that. He has beliefs. He believes that others are mistaken. He believes that Cold fusion is not real. He believes.

And those who found it at least somewhat compelling, not a single one was compelled enough to recommend special funding for the field. That would be criminal if they thought there was even a slight chance of solving the world's energy problems. So there is no way you can say the evidence is overwhelming, based on the DOE panel.

No. See, this is a conclusion from your opinion about practical application. My own opinion is that the field is not ready for a massive special program. The problem is that we don't know what's happening! We could easily throw endless amounts of money at this, and end up with nothing. Even if it's real. First of all, given that half the panel found the "evidence lacking," to use your language, just as a political matter, a massive program would be inadvisable. But the problem is that engineering an effect when you don't know what it is, is very difficult! The researchers in the field agree on this, that what is needed is theoretical investigation, to find which of the many theories is correct, or, if none of them are, to identify the mechanism. We are not ready for a "Manhattan project" for cold fusion.

This all sounds like rationalization to me. You are afraid the effect is not real,

Afraid? Why would I be afraid of an effect not being real? *I want to know what it is.* If it's experimenter error, *I want to know that*. If it's some new form of battery, *I want to know that.*

but by admitting that it may not be practical, you can cling to the belief in the absence of a product.

But, then, why would I care? You think I get some joy out of fabricating beliefs? Joshua, you are really out to lunch here.

I'm preparing some real experimental work in this field. I want to see the results, *whatever they are.* The only failure, in my view, in experimental science is to not report the results. Sure, one can make errors in interpretation. But good reporting of results allows all that to be sorted, later.

But I think that's nonsense. If there were an effect, history indicates it can be exploited.

Sure. Usually. A century later, sometimes! Tell me, d-d fusion is an effect, right? So, therefore, it can be exploited. Attempts have been made to exploit it for about sixty years, and all that has been done is to vaporize some atolls, demolish some old Navy ships, and fry some Japanese fishermen. And heat up a huge pile of apparatus, with massive inputs of electrical power. Where is the useful energy production?

And without understanding it. Heat is claimed. We know how to use heat, regardless of its origin. If the claims were valid, there would be a product.

I can, and will, make a product. I intend to sell the product, assuming that the prototype works. If what's been published under peer review is replicable, which it probably is, or I'd not be attempting this, the product will work. But I won't be selling heat, and heat will not be a part of the basic function of the product, and heat may not even be observable. (I'll find that out, but it's not important.)

People like to make things, Joshua, and this device will make something that isn't easy to make otherwise. At home.

So, I wonder, if this product works, if people have confirmed that it works, would you be interested? With this thingie, for a mere $100, you should be able to make a few neutrons and observe their effect.

Some people like to collect stamps, some people like to make a Tesla coil and make some sparks. I had a Van de Graff generator as a kid, so I could make 100 KV or so and see the effects. Great fun. Fun is a product. Science is a product. Neutrons can be a product. Know any other way to make some at home?

Just a few, mind you. Not enough to be worried about.

First of all, I do not say that the evidence is overwhelming "from the DoE panel." Definitely not! What I say from that panel is that there is not, as many pretend, a solid scientific consensus that cold fusion is bogus. The panel came down in the middle, not on one end.

One out of 18 considered the evidence for a nuclear effect conclusive.

Cool. First of all, I'm not really personally concerned with what a room full of stuffed shirts thinks. I'm interested in how they looked at the evidence, and I'm interested in scientific process, and, a specialty, where that process breaks down.

One. One other found the evidence very compelling, but stopped short of saying it was conclusive, emphasized by a conditional in his summary (if correct). Five others found the evidence somewhere between suggestive and compelling, but were rather explicit that it was not conclusive. Eleven were clearly negative.

A hair-splitting analysis by someone who is clearly not objective about this field. And still comfirming, in fact, the division of opinion on the topic. Why was a panel so divided? I conclude that there was lack of process for finding true consensus. There was not systematic examination of the evidence, point by point. So in the individual reports, we find preposterous claims, which have just as much weight in the overall conclusion as ones based in evidence.

I'll go over this at Wikiversity.

No other mainstream field would get that sort of a negative response as to its very legitimacy. In fact, I can't think of one in which the legitimacy would not be unanimously endorsed by such a panel.

Cold fusion is not a "mainstream field" by all measures, for sure. However, I do think that if such a panel were to meet today, with better process, more like, say, the IPCC process that has reviewed global warming, there would be consensus that cold fusion is a real effect, and that it's fusion.

Given the long-term political context, one day is not nearly enough to explore the field, to understand enough of the evidence to reverse twenty years of often strongly-held opinion.

Again, the complexity of the data -- that it should take more than a day for experts to be convinced of heat -- is the problem. If the evidence is that weak, after so much time, then it is probably bogus.

Storms has noted that there isn't a problem with lack of theory to explain cold fusion, it is that there are too many theories. There is strong evidence, but it is frequently buried in masses of details that are difficult to grasp, and that are, in the end, unnecessary to grasp. I've pointed to this with that chart of P13/P14. I don't see that the importance of this experiment has been explained *anywhere,* except possibly recently, by me.

For whatever reason, the CF researchers were unable to explain CF well. Beaudette does a pretty good job, but also gets very bogged down in piles of details. There is a *huge* volume of research, and it's been all over the map, so with any particular avenue of approach, there is only a little work, often.

And they had more than a day. Half the panel was given a month to review the material. It is not clear how much time after the meeting the reviewers were given to write their reports.

I need to read more on the panel and the process. I do know that the researchers, at last some of them, were disappointed by the lack of questions. And the reports show, clearly, that at least some of the review paper was misunderstood, literally. Not just as to conclusion, but as to reported fact.

Okay, what evidence was presented? One of the things that I notice about the Hagelstein paper is that the helium evidence was not *effectively presented*.[...]

That data was presented in such a way that makes it quite difficult to interpret the report. I don't know why they did this, but obviously writing polemic, text intended to convince, was not their strong suit. These are researchers, accustomed to very modest writing, academic style, and not trained in what might have been needed to punch through the noise. They had a purpose to presenting the Case results, but didn't make it clear.

This was an important opportunity for the CF crowd, and they had plenty of time to put the best case forward. Now you're telling me that you, essentially an observer (with aspirations), could have written a better report for the panel. What is that supposed to say? That the entire CF community is too incompetent to represent their field effectively to a panel that holds the purse strings? It does not inspire confidence in their claims, that's for sure.

What I think is that only a segment of the CF community, with connections, was represented. I also think that competence at presenting polemic is an entirely different skill from competence at doing experimental or theoretical research. You want to judge the competence of a scientist by his or her competence as a salesperson? You live in some strange world, Joshua, one not familiar to me.

Have you read the recent Storms review? It covers the heat/helium evidence well. I assume you know that *there is no contrary experimental evidence." I've seen claims that Storms has cherry-picked only positive results. I don't think so. I'm not aware of any published work that measured both helium and heat and found no correlation.

Until the positive evidence at least passes peer review, a skeptic does not need contrary evidence. The fact that the results are controversial within the field indicates that not all is well with that experiment.

What results are controversial "within the field." Are you referring to Krivit? He's not "within the field." He is a personality with some relationship to the field, and his views are fringe within the field. He could not get his "criticisms" to pass peer review. He's avoided them in what he's had published as a reporter, which is his supposed profession.

I think they are all mistaken.


I've already said that I feel no need to understand where they have gone wrong. If they are right, there should be simpler ways to prove it.

Because? Should the four-color map theorem be rejected because the proof is complex? Sure, a simpler proof was desirable, which is why people continued to search for it. But is that essential?

I get that this is your theme, Joshua. Your logic is this: if CF were real, proof would be simple. Since no simple proof has appeared, according to your judgment, CF must be, pending such simple proof, presumed to be not real.

There are several obvious flaws here. Probably the biggest is that simple proof *has* appeared, but you reject it, based on other criteria. Essentially, you have a strong belief that "simple proof" must be reliable excess heat, sustained indefinitely. That's an artificial restriction that, applied analogously in other fields, would rule out a whole lot of accepted science.

I conclude that you have a hidden motive, you have not disclosed, that is driving the way you look at this.

But this is reliable: run a number of P-F experiments and measure helium and heat. Use the state of the art to develop some significant success rate. (Lots of groups are now reporting excess heat from almost all cells. It takes special palladium, basically. Or possibly you can use codeposition, a different approach.)

Compare the heat with the helium.

Lots of people have done this. They all report that if there is no heat, there is no helium, and if there is heat, there is helium (almost always, there are a couple of anomalous cells reported, with heat and no helium. And there are other possible explanations for that.... Storms reports that for those three cells (out of 33 total), this is Miles' work, one "probably" had a calorimetry error, and the other two were a different cathode material than all the other cells....)

A good experiment for sure. But since Miles in '93, no one has published such results in peer-reviewed literature. It appears in conference proceedings, or specialized CF publications, but not in mainstream journals, except as references in reviews. The work itself, as primary research, has not passed peer review.

That's simply incorrect. I gave, in a mail earlier today, a list of authors and years of publication, cited by Storms (2010), from mainstream peer-reviewed journals, if I recognized them correctly, on heat/helium. Many of the sources cited by Storms on this were post-93, and were published under peer review.

Further, for science, "published in mainstream peer-reviewed journals" is not a primary criterion. A secondary source, published under peer review, establishes the relevance of the work, assuming careful peer review of the secondary source. Research papers report from all kinds of sources, including private communications, etc., and reviews are no different.

In a previous mail you presented Storms as being desperate to prove cold fusion. If he were so, surely he'd have made sure to focus on what's been published under peer review, making a point of it. In fact, because his interest is the science, not politics, he cited whatever sources were relevant. A great deal of work, for example, was done by Michael McKubre under contract with the EPRI. Is this work to be ignored in a review of the field because it wasn't published under peer review? The *reviewer*, in a review, decides what sources are important to include.

The 1989 U.S. DoE review relied upon informal reports, private communications with researchers. If people are concerned with reality, with making decisions as to policy, they will consider information from all sources, weighting it according to source, by which is meant actual judgment of the probity of the source, not its artificial classification by site of publication. Some peer reviewed literature is lousy, and some conference papers, not peer reviewed at all, are excellent.

That's fine. But if you don't, you have not demonstrated artifact. You are simply assuming one. Why?

Because it is the nature of artifacts that the effect gets smaller as the experiments improve, and it is the nature of a real phenomenon that its effect gets clearer as the experiments improve.

Okay, the cold fusion phenomenon got clearer as experiments improved. You are claiming the reverse. Can you back that up with sources?

In cold fusion, as the experiments improve, the effect gets smaller.

And as the experiment gets worse, as in the Rossi demo, the effect gets bigger.

Rossi isn't presenting us with a valid experimental report. He's run, apparently, a series of demonstrations. From accounts, he didn't want to do that, but was persuaded by a colleague. He just wants to make the very kind of demonstration you've been demanding, if these accounts are correct. Rossi has, however, nothing to do with ordinary cold fusion research, except that he seems to have continued a line of research involving NiH. This is a quite different effect from the Fleischmann-Pons effect, and the only connection would be that, historically, once FP cold fusion was demonstrated, people started looking for similar stuff. And hit upon nickel hydride. This work has nothing like the extensive corroboration of palladium deuteride cold fusion. I don't know what the ash is, for example. I don't know if this is real at all.

Because I know that LENR are possible, I'm not going to reject Rossi out of hand, that's all. But there are lots of reasons to be highly skeptical about Rossi's claims; on the other hand, some knowledgeable people seem impressed, so .... I'm quite happy to wait for that 1 MW reactor he's promising. Seems like a Bad Idea to me, and to a lot of other people in the field. I hope he's not setting it up next door. I don't plan to attend that demo. What if it works? What if it works a little too well?

It's much too late for that. My attitude is simply that if they were right, it would be easy to demonstrate in an unambiguous way, and I'm happy to wait for the demo.

Yes, I can understand. However, cold fusion, itself, has been demonstrated, and quite well, by the correlation with helium. That doesn't make it into the kind of demonstration that you presumably want. But, guess what? Science doesn't come packaged like that.

Well, as I've argued, the helium results don't impress me (or reviewers), and I do believe that an effect of the sort that has been claimed would manifest in a package like that.

We should look specifically at how the 2004 DoE reviewers looked at helium. I think there is a lot to see there. The second part of your sentence seems incoherent.

I'm interested in the science, as were Pons and Fleischmann. They were not searching for a new power source, they expected, in fact, to find nothing.

That sounds like revisionism to me. They spent 5 years looking for excess heat.

No, they found massive excess heat about four years before 1989, and that's documented, there are eyewitness accounts of the meltdown aftermath. What I'm seeing here, Joshua, is massive projection, your own world-view being imagined as manifest in Pons and Fleischmann. Fleischmann is reporting what his long-term focus had been, from well before 1985. There is no reason to doubt his account, and that you do so speaks volumes about you.

They then spent the next four years, first, scaling down for safety, then trying to make the effect reliable. They were not ready to publish. Events overtook them, particulary Jones finding out about their work through a grant application.

I seriously doubt they were only interested in the science, or that they expected to find nothing. That scenario certainly doesn't come across in their early papers or in their early interviews. They sounded more like prescient sages who discovered what arrogant physicists missed.

No, they looked for what nobody had looked for. That's clear. The theory was that the approximations of 2-body quantum mechanics were adequate because the vast interatomic distances meant that it wasn't necessary to consider more than two bodies at a time. That simplified -- greatly -- the math. A consequence of this approach was that fusion in a solid would be analyzed the same as fusion in a plasma. Fleischmann claims that he was checking this assumption, he suspected that there might be some meaurable difference, and he knew that there would be a difference (that's practically inevitable), but expected the difference would probably be below his ability to measure. I see no reason to doubt this account, it is reasonable, and for him to invest resources in a search for cheap energy, working alone like that (with Pons) doesn't particularly make sense. After all, he knew the theory, he knew that fusion was really unlikely!

Lots of people had made palladium deuteride, it was a common material to use for various experiments. People didn't expect it to explode or make a lot of heat. But had they actually measured heat? It turns out that Mizuno had, before Fleischmann's announcement, observed strange heat from palladium deuteride, but shrugged it off as one of those things that happen and that are never explained.

We already know how to set up that beaker of water, I suspect, but nobody is trying to do it because, sorry, it will not be impressive and it will be very expensive. Why bother? To prove something to you?

To prove something to Bob Park, and the DOE. To get the field funded. That's a common complaint in the field: that it is starved of funding. Rothwell claims 300M is needed to develop a prototype. And the ability to rub a convincing demonstration in Robert Park's face would bring almost as much pleasure to some advocates, it seems, as saving the world.

Why Robert Park? And, Joshua, it could take that $300 million to create the demonstration that would cause Park to pass out. Isn't all this a bit backwards?

There is a problem with the palladium approach, palladium is a precious metal. Using the Arata approach, my guess is that a hot water heater could be built that might run for a few months. For about $100,000 worth of palladium. At the end of the few months, it would be necessary to reprocess the palladium, because, it seems, the reaction chews up the stuff, demolishing the areas that are nuclear-active, so it eventually stops working.

Well screw the water heater. Just an isolated beaker. If that works, the DOE will give you 100M to build a water heater, and money to anyone else who wants to solve the problems of reprocessing the Pd.

How in the world do I create a demonstration in an "isolated beaker"? The most reliable method is gas-loading of palladium deuteride. Hydrogen poisons the reaction, apparently. Could I take a bunch of CO2 cartridges, fill them with PdD and seal them, and drop them in the beaker? Would that satisfy you? How warm would the beaker have to get, and for how long?

(I've thought of this as a real product, a cold fusion handwarmer. Obviously a novelty item. Expensive. But you'd be able to feel it stay warm. The question is for how long. Low levels of heat for a long time require a lot of energy. The big problem is that the reaction seems to destroy the functional reaction sites. It's apparently a surface effect, so the key is to make a lot of surface, that's why nanoparticles are being used. But the particles can stick together, reducing the surface. Nevertheless, I've my eye on gas loading research, looking for a small opportunity. I have no idea at what price point a novelty handwarmer cold fusion demonstration would sell. The materials are very expensive. When the reaction takes place, the particles start to stick to each other more, clumping up, reducing reaction sites, it seems. The palladium is not used up, but that's only a part of the cost, making the nanoparticles isn't cheap. Making Joshua's beaker is not easy, at all, not if substantial heat is required. For the science, *any heat that can be measured and shown to be from non-chemical origin is adequate,* and measuring the ash finesses all the debate about calorimetry. So someone buys the Ajax CF Handwarmer, included in the price is that they can return the thing after it cools down and get a helium analysis of the contents. Thus certifying that they made, with nuclear fusion, so much helium in their pocket. They can put it on the wall, the certificate..... Do you think I will be filthy rich from this idea? No? Spoilsport! I want to do it anyway, because I consider this Fun. Like Neutrons in my Kitchen.)

Now, this is really weird, I think. Hot fusion hasn't produced a watt of power, but billions have been spent. On the other hand, we do understand the theory behind hot fusion. Your practical argument is being selectively applied!

First, I have not expressed an opinion about hot fusion, so you are only guessing.

You seem to have appeared, lotus born, sometime in January, with criticism of Rossi. But you have more knowledge than would ordinarily be expected from someone not familiar with cold fusion before that, unless you really did a crash course. Your knowledge is superficial in some respects, assuming that you are writing what you believe, you've taken some short-cuts.

I have not guessed what your opinion is about hot fusion. Hot fusion is simply an example of something accepted that has proven to be, so far, utterly impractical, and that might remain so. The engineering problems are horrific.

Second, I'm not making a practical argument. The palpably warm beaker is not practical. I'm asking for an experiment that proves convincingly that excess heat is produced.

Been done. Look it can take months to run one of these experiments, and they *aren't* reliable, not the ones that produce serious heat. If you want "convincingly to this armchair skeptic who won't lift a finger and who won't examine all the evidence," you aren't going to find it. And I'd be wasting my time to try to change your mind, which is clearly made up. You are demanding that science conform to your personal desires. It might drop some response on you, but, more likely, by the time that happens, it will all have become irrelevant.

I'm claiming that SRI/McKubre P13/P14, if you study the experimental conditions and controls, if you accept the report as honest and not fraudulent, and as being done by people *reasonably competent*, as would be expected from SRI (I did some design work for SRI, by the way, maybe twenty years ago, but it was something completely different, I think), is quite adequate as proof of an excess heat anomaly. There is a reason why they put that image on p. 2 of the review document for the 2004 U.S. DoE. Problem is, they forgot to explain it!

I'm suspecting that the best people to explain cold fusion might not be people that have been working on it for 20 years, because they don't know the pathway from ignorance and skepticism to understanding and acceptance. It would be like having an advanced mathematical theorist teach kindergarten and first grade. There are a few who could pull it off, but nost could not. They know too much.

I can imagine the researchers looking at Figure 1 and saying "why can't these idiots see it? Look how obvious it is!" But it's only obvious in context and in contrast to what happens when the effect does *not* appear. With all the other conditions apparently the same. What was the difference? I don't think anyone knows, but from conversations I've had with the researchers, I suspect it has something to do with an oxide layer that forms chaotically and under poor control. That suspicion could suggest research approaches, since it might be possible to detect an oxide layer on or near the surface.

No charge.

I am exasperated by repeated CF experiments that go no where. If there is excess heat, it should be possible to make an isolated thing that generates heat. I'm asking for proof-of-principle.

What do you mean by "isolated thing" and why should it be possible?

In the case of hot fusion, the existence of fusion has been proved convincingly by the neutrons. Proof of principle is there. Engineering remains. I'm not convinced it's wise to fund the engineering, but I don't question the science.

Nor do I. In the case of cold fusion, the evidence is definitely more sparse than that for hot fusion (much more!), but it's well above the level at which phenomena are routinely accepted. Long before practical applications are found. The existence of fusion has been proven convincingly by correlation of helium with heat. It's pretty simple, really. Just set up highly loaded palladium deuteride, and measure excess heat. Keep trying until you have a significant number of excess heat results, which can take a few years unless you run a lot of cells simultaneously. Report the total results for all cells. That's a simple experiment conceptually. It's been done, by many groups. There are no contrary reports. Heat and helium are correlated. Get over it.

Frequently, in this, it is claimed that cold fusion excess heat results are not found by some researchers because these are the ones with more accurate calorimetry, or who are not making the "mistakes" of cold fusion researchers. First of all, the most sensitive calorimetry in the field is that done by Fleischmann. His particular technique, if I'm correct, is about ten times as sensitive as the norm. He was, in fact, depending on this for safety reasons, initially he was quite worried about radiation, and since he could detect a milliwatt of excess heat, he felt safe, he'd know to check for radiation. Apparently he coulc not afford continuous monitoring.

Secondly, if the problem were do to a technique error by CF researchers, it should have been easy to show. Just make the same mistake! Then show that it's a mistake. Replication would include making the *same mistakes.* If you do it differently, you haven't truly replicated, you have performed a different experiment. Do it the same even if it seems wrong! Do it the same until you get the same results! *Then* you can fix "errors."

In my work, there are aspects to the Galileo protocol that I don't like. It raises cost unnecessarily, it seems to me. But I'm sure not starting with something "better." What if what seems unnecessary to me is actually important? I *am*, for practical reasons, making some changes. I'm using acrylic for electrode supports rather than HDPE. Since the cell is made of acrylic, I *hope* this won't be a problem. But it could be!

The first fission reactor produced less than a watt of power, but was completely convincing because of the neutrons. Within a few years, they needed the Columbia river to cool reactors designed to produce plutonium.

Yeah. Joshua, I was studying nuclear power by 1955 or so. I thought I'd become a nuclear physicist. Life brought changes, and I left the sciences entirely, after more than two years at Cal Tech. I happened to be there at exactly the right time, to gain certain experience, then I did other stuff. For me, this is all a return, the end of a great circle. My main interest isn't cold fusion, itself, but the process by which people find consensus, and make collective decisions. Cold fusion, then, is an example of communication failure. For sure, two communities developed here, isolated from each other, and unable to find consensus. I'm not sure I'm aware of any truly similar example. For a time, a phony "scientific consensus" developed on the role of fat in the diet, vs. obesity, cholesterol, heart disease, and other "diseases of civilization," that's about the closest I know; that one never was a true scientific consensus, but, again, a political one, with real scientists being brushed aside as impractical dreamers and ivory-tower theorists, and it really started to fall apart sometime after the turn of the century. There is still tremendous inertia, I frequently see dieticians give Really Bad Advice, being what they were taught for their entire career.

That bad advice is costing lives, many. Because of communication failure.

It's much like a magician. I may not understand how he does his tricks, but I know that if he could really perform magic, he wouldn't be wasting his time doing two-bit shows pulling rabbits out of hats, he'd conjure up an island in the South Pacific, with a harem to wait on his every need.

Sure. That's a magician. However, cold fusion researchers are not magicians, and the legitimate ones don't claim to be able to generate lots of power.

You missed the point. It's an analogy. Magicians claim magic, but can only do their tricks under controlled conditions, with prescribed props. Put a naked magician in a plain cell and give him your hat, and he will not pull a rabbit out of it.

"Controlled conditions." The key to science, avoiding the "magic tricks," is reproducibility. It's not the controlled conditions. Magic depends on concealed controls. Science advances with understood and explicit controls. A magician will never describe to you all the props, allowing you to build them, unless you are an apprentice, generally sworm to secrecy. Magic is about creating appearance. Science is about observing reality and then making predictions that can be verified.

Prediction: if you set up CF cells, Pons-Fleischmann type, and run them to gain loading over 90%, and follow the other devices of the art, you will see some excess heat, sometimes. A rabbit will appear and jump out of your hat. If you measure helium, you will only see helium when the rabbit jumps out. Rabbit helium farts? What?

Cold fusion experimenters claim excess heat, but can only demonstrate it under controlled conditions, with prescribed props. Ask for an isolated device that generates heat in excess of the equivalent mass in chemical fuel, and they say, e.g. we could do it, but it's too expensive...

Are you aware that you just acknowledged the reality of reproducible excess heat? If the researcher publishes their work, the "controlled conditions," and the "prescribed props," -- which might mean such and such a batch of palladium rod, from this particular supplier -- and this, done by another researcher, demonstrates excess heat, that fully qualifies as independent replication.

If there is a "trick," one then gets to examine the "props," in detail. Do you think the "trick" would remain secret? Why?

This makes clear that you have set up an artificial standard for demonstration.

As to the "too expensive" explanation, if you want to see heat in excess of the equivalent mass of fuel, that is also easily done. But, yes, it is expensive. The way I'd do it is to pick one of the techniques that are known to occasionally produce such heat, and run a lot of cells with that technique. SuperWave might be just the ticket. You forgot something, I think. You want other people to spend money to convince *you.* Why should they? Who are you, to deserve them spending many thousands of dollars? It might take $100,000 to make it very likely you'd see that obvious demonstration.

You know, if there is a chemical effect that generates, say, only 50% of the heat possible, this effect would then leave tell-tale ash. If you have chemistry capable of, say 10 MJ, and you see only 50% of that as excess heat, you would then have chemistry capable of only 5 MJ. Half the material would be gone. If, instead, the material is still there, you actually have 5 MJ of excess heat (unless you can ascribe the 5 MJ to some other source, such as input power -- but when they talk about 5 MJ of excess heat, they have already substracted the input power.)

Your standard is completely artificial.

Look, there are agencies now funding cold fusion. Do you think they are going to waste their money on such unnecessary demonstrations? For whose benefit? Surely not the benefit of an armchair critic who shows up, unknown and unidentified, and starts proclaiming to all and sundry what supreme bogosity cold fusion is!

And who is unable to get any of this published by a peer-reviewed journal. Who is fringe now?

You have ridiculed CF *for being published in mainstream journals as reviews.* Fine. Surely, if there is something to your position, after as many reviews have been published that are positive on cold fusion, there would be some appropriateness for "Dr. Mainstream" to come off his pedestal of self-admiration for a moment and write a review that sets the matter straight. Surely, with his impeccable credentials and flawless knowledge and reasoning, he could do a great job of it, saving the world from wasting its time with all these deluded fanatics! He might even be able to make some money.

I obtained a copy of the ACS LENR Sourcebook. It was selling at the time on Amazon for $150. It went out of print for a short time. Yes, it had sold out. Oxford University Press made money from cold fusion. While it was sold out, some were selling copies for upwards of $300.... I could have made money on cold fusion myself!

So, having published the definite review that finally nailed the coffin shut on cold fusion, the intrepid Scientist could now write the definitive book, telling the history of this total fiasco, from start to finish, and, of course, his own modest tale of how he realized that so many had been deluded, so, while he knew it was a complete waste of time, he realized his duty to the public interest, and read a few of the papers.

Just as you are waiting for the Magic demonstration, I'm waiting for the Magic refutation, the response to Storms (2010), in a journal of equivalent or better quality. Whom to you expect will publish it?

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