Andrea Rossi claims to have developed a practical and commercial ready Cold Fusion technology that could cost around 1 cent per kilowatt hour; with the first 1 MW plant completed later this year, comprised of 125 units ganged together. It utilizes nano-nickel powder, hydrogen gas, and undisclosed (for proprietary reasons) catalysts under pressure to produce large amounts of energy.
The test took place at the University of Bologna.
A source close to the recent 18-hour test of the Rossi device gave me the
following figures. These are approximations.
Flow rate: 3,000 L/h = 833 ml/s.
Input temperature: 15°C
Output temperature ~20°C
Input power from control electronics: variable, average 80 W, closer to 20 W
for 6 hours
Notes from Jed
5°C temperature difference * 833 ml = 4,165 cal/s = 17,493 W
3,000 L/h seems like a lot but it is 793 gallons/h, which is how much a
medium-sized $120 ornamental pond pump produces. Peter & I think it would
have been better to throttle back the flow rate somewhat.
15°C is probably tap water temperature.
A 5°C temperature difference can easily be measured with confidence.
The control electronics input of ~80 W is in line with what was reported for
tests before Jan. 14. Input was high on that day because something went
wrong with the controls, with "cracked welding" as described in the Levi
Italian journalist Daniele Passerini has compiled some recent dialogue he has had with Andrea Rossi, the inventor of the catalyzer technology which appears to be a cold fusion process, which they are taking commercial in a 10 kW heater at a cost of 1 cent per kW-h (translation via Pure Energy Systems News by Hank Mills)
22PASSI - Congratulations Mr. Rossi, the news of the invention of the E-Cat has been prominent in Greece where the Newco that assumes responsibility for it's production and marketing, Defkalion Green Technologies of Athens, is located. I imagine that Prof. Christos E. Stremmenos has to be played as a sponsor, who was an opponent of the regime of the colonels, former Ambassador of Greece to Rome, Professor of Physics at the University of Athens, and practically a national hero in Greece. In Italy the media have largely ignored the news and discussed it only on the web, often bitterly. The questions that I'm inspired to ask address the doubts and criticisms that I have picked up on the internet. For example, a very controversial question is if the E-Cat can be considered safe.
ROSSI - The 10-kW modules we produce are safe and for years now we have been testing and using them with no problems. All possible measures of radiation from the reactor have been taken and the modules have always demonstrated the utmost safety. We control it as we want, switching it on and switching it off and we get power on and power off. It can never exceed a certain power because we have designed it so that there can be no Nickel-Hydrogen reaction above the safety limits and, above all, there is no radiation outside of the reactor significantly over the background level. It is true that with our current state of knowledge we do not know what would happen if we started scaling up the reactor from 10KW to 1000KW. In fact, we take care not to do so. To obtain higher power production we combine the modules in series and parallel, as if they were batteries. A 10 KW reactor connecting in parallel increases the amount of energy produced at a constant temperature and putting them in series multiplies the amount of energy produced at increasing temperature, because you multiply the TD. Combining the two architectures, parallel and series, you can get what you want and stay strictly in the same safety parameters.
22PASSI - We always talk about thermal power, right?
ROSSI - yes, when converting to other forms of energy there will be a loss of efficiency. In the Carnot cycle efficiency is usually between 30% and 35% depending on the efficiency of the system, this means that if we convert 1MW of thermal power we can get 300-350 kW electric and thermal energy.
22PASSI - Then we could produce both heat and electricity at the same time..
ROSSI - With the Carnot cycle this is so. Of course nothing is created and nothing is destroyed: the energy balance should be 100. However, if out of 100KW of heat 35 KW of heat was converted into electricity and the other 65KW of heat remained, then you would lose a few percentage points in conversion. In summary, if the E-Cat provides only thermal power directly, only a heat exchanger is needed and you're done. If you need electricity only a portion of the thermal energy can be transformed into electricity, but you will also have the heat that remains.
22PASSI. Then a small village of 50-100 families with a 1 MW unit could be made more energy independent in terms of heating and electricity.
ROSSI. Ah yes, this certainly.
22PASSI - If I understand correctly, once enough power is given to the reactor to ignite (in Bologna there was talk of 1-2kW), in this setup the machine might operate autonomously, without a power outlet or battery as the power input (on the order of 0.4 kW / h) is well within the approximately 3.5 kW electricity obtainable.
ROSSI - Certainly. There remains, however, the problem of the drive (control system) that is still a little more complex: each reactor has implemented an electrical drive for safety reasons and much be attached to a current line. Precisely because of these controls, we can ensure that there are no safety problems inherent in our E-Cat from 10 kW, as well in our unit from 1MW, consisting of 100 reactors from 10kW each of which has its own control system. From 10 kW to 1MW we are able to maintain the level of safety gained.
22PASSI - the fact remains that there is still a scientific explanation of what happens inside the machine. If you do not know this how can you be sure you can control the reactor in every condition, even the most unpredictable?
ROSSI - Well, first of all we have a pretty good idea of the theoretical reasons why the machine works. Many things remain to be specified and we are working in collaboration with the University of Bologna. But you see, even in the normal combustion of wood exactly what happens in reality, nobody knows. That is all the various and successive reactions that occur between the chemical formulation of departure and the chemical formulation of the final products of combustion we do not know exactly. However, designing combustion chambers in terms of safety is possible because you know what is the initial situation and what is the final situation. All of the security measures result from this. So, for example, we use more shielding than what would be sufficient, and we get a surplus of security as it is used in any plant.
22PASSI - This means that the gamma rays that Prof. Villa has reported found during the experiment on January 14, were simply not well shielded and made it out of the machine?
ROSSI - With the University of Bologna we will proceed to do in-depth work on the range of radiation. The range of radiation that exists is necessary, because if it were not there, we would not have energy. It is a problem not only of shielding but also positioning counters. There are the greatest prudence in this moment on this point, at least until the patent will be approved. We have made internal measurements of the range of radiation produced, but we try to ensure that others do not, because measuring the range of radiation gets - as if to say - the fingerprint of everything that's inside the reactor.
22PASSI - What did you say to Celani during the press conference of January 14...
ROSSI - Yes, why at one point I asked him politely (to Professor Celani) to turn off his meter is just that I know how smart... until I saw that it was checking into whether there was some trick I have left to do, because in a nutshell its purpose, with the machine that was brought, was to check if we had hidden inside the reactor any radioactive substance that was the real source of heat. In this case the issuance of the range of radiation would have been constant and precise, while in the case of the range of radiation that was measured there it was a discontinuous emission, crackling, what Celani encountered.
22PASSI - Forgive me if I repeat, this seems a fairly controversial issue, but how do you reconcile the statement that you have a fairly accurate idea of what is happening inside the machine with the fact that at the time the first theoretical model was formulated Focardi denied his lack of Gamma (I am referring to the report Prof. Villa)?
ROSSI - In a nutshell for very nicely measuring the range of radiation we should create a 360 degree hole in the reactor to allow the meter to read what's happening there. But what that implies is giving away the technology completely in the hands of a person prepared to interpret the data. To design the systems security anti spy technology of this kind is not enough to surround himself with collaborators honest and like ... I myself, Andrea, would be in crisis if someone were to say "we will give you a figure that will change your life overnight and your next five generations in return for telling us..." An offer of this kind would severely test even the honesty of a Saint.
22PASSI - Then let me ask you how you would react if they were to make you the same offer to never produce the E-Cat?
ROSSI - One must be in the situation to know how you would answer... But I can tell you that this project is my life and for me is priceless.
22PASSI - Let's go back to the reasons for your caution, we are talking about secrets of the other elements in addition to the nickel and hydrogen involved in the reaction? This is what would be revealed due to a thorough analysis of the range of the radioactive spectrum, right?
ROSSI - Of course, just that.. the composition of the powder inside of the machine is the essence of the reaction, because using only nickel and hydrogen nothing comes out. So what compromise did we make? I had to put Professor Villa's counters in a second position and angle that I thought could be safe, to see something but not too much, but I was so careful that eventually the counters did not pick up anything. This is the problem.
22PASSI - Can you tell us at which point of the patent process is this technology? You are in the finishing straight yes or no?
ROSSI - I think yes, although of course the only certainty I have is when our lawyers (the Study Cicogna of Milan) will inform us the happy ending. I heard the lawyer. Stork a week ago for clarification, after the nuclear chemist Camillo Franchini had leaked the news that our patent was rejected in a bad way. The lawyer replied that he should have been warned first if this really happened, it has controlled half an hour later he phoned me reassuring me that those rumors were just crap! Evidently, Camillo Franchini was referring to disputes concerning the first phase of the trial in the Patent Office.
22PASSI - When one makes a machine like this and wants to put it on the market beyond the approval of the patent what other permits do you need? Could a problem arise due to the fact there is still not a theoretical model?
ROSSI - So, our client has already obtained the Greek permissions for the machine to be produced. For safety reasons we must provide scientific proof of the fact that the plant does not give rise to emissions of radiation and work in controlled conditions of pressure to stay within certain energies. The moment we show that we can perfectly control the pressure and temperature of the process, we will have no more problems. Lets go back to the example of combustion, as we said before: no one knows exactly what happens. Not only that, I'l tell you more, how atoms work, no one really knows if she takes one of the most recent testing of atomic models, the Marhoon, there is a chapter where you read "may be so, but might not be so." If the lack of a theoretical model would be a reason not to authorize the E Cat then at this point many machines used in nuclear medicine should not be permitted. For example, a PET (Positron Emission Tomography) machine, is theoretically, a very dangerous machine. How to work exactly the nuclear reactions that lead to the operation of these machines do not know for the simple fact no one knows how the nucleus of an atom functions. CERN has made that immense ring just to try and start to truly understand how atoms are made, because they do not know. But the PET using the same, regardless of the theoretical aspect (which is far from clear) you know the radiation that comes out during a scan and that the danger is under control. The same thing we do: the radiation coming out of our reactor is perfectly controlled, we have made thousands of measurements, we have made with the same experts who make the controls on the machines used in nuclear medicine.
22PASSI - I guess the day when the nuclear physicists and chemists will find a scientific model to explain what is happening inside of the machine at that point will be implemented and developed. We are just at the beginning of a new technology, like the first internal combustion engines of more than a century ago compared to today.
ROSSI - Absolutely. the example is right: in 1905 to assume an internal combustion engine that produced the power of hundreds of horses would be pure utopia, they would say "you are crazy, this shit here is a bomb." Let's say that today we have scaled the machine to be secure in proportion to the knowledge we have. A century ago, the chemistry of combustion of oil in the cylinders was largely unknown, but the engine turned and they were sure, because at those powers of a few horsepower there was no problem.
22PASSI - We change subject, at the end you have chosen to produce abroad instead of in Italy does not surprise me ...
ROSSI - No, in Italy, I will not do anything, apart from the research. Today I find myself in Italy because I'm working with the University of Bologna, otherwise I would be in the United States.
22PASSI - This I wanted to ask you. Why not in Greece and in the Unites States where there most activity on the technology is?
ROSSI - In the US we have a factory producing reactors. In Greece there is a Newco owned by large European companies working in the field of energy. There are proposals and we have a contract...
22PASSI - One moment, this had escaped me. Are you telling me that there will be a factory in Greece and another in the United States?
Yes, that escaped, the United States there is already a factory. The reactors that have been produced now and the first units of the 1MW plant are being built in the plant we have in the United States.
22PASSI - So the unit of 1MW that will be presented in October will be built in the US and brought to Greece?
ROSSI - Exactly. In Greece, we are now preparing the plant that will produce for the European market, I suppose, but that will depend on what the board of Defkalion Green Technologies decides.
22PASSI - At this point can you tell us who are the investors from Europe and the USA?
ROSSI - I'm sorry, they want to remain anonymous. We do not work to satisfy the curiosity of people, but work to produce machines that work and respect the will of those who put up the capital. I can only add that they clearly know very well all the secrets of the machine and is precisely why they decided to invest in it.
22PASSI - Confirms that the first customers will be private industries and not?
ROSSI - Absolutely Yes. Also, because back to the discussion about safety, it is one thing to obtain permission to use these devices in an industrial situation, where there are adequate facilities and equipment and specialized personnel. An account is a house hold appliance that is bought at any department store and put in any apartment. It is evident that both technological development and approvals and certifications necessary to produce the appliance will involve much more time to be finalized and implemented. The industrial one is great because you have an industrial structure with employees trained to do maintenance and control. It is when you go to the home of Mrs. Mary that the approval becomes more difficult from an authorization standpoint, because there is not a person or an expert. Inside the E-Cat nuclear reactions still occur, even when not in use or manufactured with radioactive materials, or better, isotopes are produced with very short decay time, a half-life in minutes.
22PASSI - In short, the limit for now is how small, not how large. But this means that as you bring together elements from 10KW to derive units of 1MW at the same time you could put together units from 1MW to obtain higher power? To make a 100 megawatt power station by hundreds of, for example?
ROSSI - Certainly. The unit of 1MW are 100 units of 10kW. At that point units of 1MW can be put together how we want.
22PASSI. It is science fiction to imagine that 50 years from now there will be a domestic cold fusion boiler in each apartment?
ROSSI - It could happen in less than a decade. It would be subject to authorization issues much more complex like we said before, but that has already been exceeded for industrial plants under construction.
22PASSI. 22PASSI. Yes, but there is a middle ground very interesting in my opinion: the district heating. Already today there are entire neighborhoods that are using a single boiler. The infrastructure is already pretty packed, just replace the unit for natural gas with a cold fusion.
ROSSI Certainly, this is feasible as of now, because we are still in the field of industrial application, even if the end use is residential, not going to put a device into an apartment like a TV or a microwave oven waves, in homes run only the hot water pipes produced by a power with all the safety standards that are needed. It is exactly what they will do in Greece, where they are most interested in that the electric heat.
22PASSI. We confirm that the costs declared at a press conference in Bologna, that is € 2000 per kW for the purchase of the plant and 1 cent per kW / h?
ROSSI. No, these figures are in dollars and cents, when it comes to euro prices are lower, depending on the current exchange rate of course. I remember now a kW from traditional energy sources is about 13-14 cents.
Tech News world also has an article - cold fusion - it may not be madness
Commercial reactors that would make energy for less than one US cent per kilowatt hour -- far cheaper than competing sources -- will ship in three months, Focardi and Rossi said.
McKubre isn't the only respectable researcher to tackle cold fusion in recent years, Duncan added. Osaka University physics professor emeritus Yoshiaki Arata, who in 2006 received Japan's highest honor, the Order of Culture, reported excess heat effects with palladium nanoparticles.
Particularly remarkable was the (decidedly chilly) cold fusion journey of Julian Schwinger, who with Richard Feynmann and Shinichiro Tomonaga won the 1965 Nobel Prize in Physics for one of the greatest ever physical theories, quantum electrodynamics or QED.
After studying the Pons-Fleischmann experiments, "Julian had a theory that a process tantamount to cold fusion was occurring, but even as a Nobel laureate, he couldn't get reputable journals to publish it," Duncan told TechNewsWorld.
"My first attempt at publication was a total disaster," Schwinger recalled during lectures and seminars. He had devised a hypothesis about the effect "to suggest several critical experiments," but because cold fusion had become what Duncan calls a "pariah science, poison to all who touched it," Schwinger -- graduate advisor to four other Nobel laureates who also won the U.S. National Medal of Science -- was summarily ignored.
"What I had not expected was the venomous criticism, the contempt, the enormous pressure to conform. Has the knowledge that physics is an experimental science been totally lost?" he wondered.
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