[extropy-chat] Elvis Sightings (was: cold fusion warms up)

Amara Graps amara at amara.com
Tue Dec 26 19:46:14 UTC 2006

To: extropians at extropy.org
From: Amara Graps <amara at amara.com>
Subject: re: Cold fusion redux

  "John K Clark" <jonkc at att.net> :
>but there is no big controversy
>over this matter, 99.9% of the scientific community think cold fusion
>(except Muon-catalyzed cold fusion) is utter crap.

I don't think scientists think it is "utter crap", either then or now.


================== from the Past =======================================

From: James_J_Kowalczyk at cup.portal.com
Newsgroups: sci.physics.fusion
Subject: Re: Pons and Fleischmann -- and Paul Kammerer
Message-ID: <19752 at cup.portal.com>
Date: 22 Jun 89 03:09:54 GMT
References: <24528 at mordor.s1.gov>
Organization: The Portal System (TM)

lip at voyager..ARPA (Loren I. Petrich) writes:

... lot's of stuff not relevant to sci.physics.fusion deleted

>combined with inadvertent Darwinism, it seems that the excess heat
>production could well be accounted for by chemical reactions in the
>electrodes, and not nuclear fusion. And there are parallel tests for
>both. For the first, one breeds very carefully, in an attempt to
>counteract natural selection. For the second, one redoes the
>experiment with varying mixes of hydrogen isotopes, including "natural"
>hydrogen (with almost no deuterium).
>         I hope that some of these critical tests are done in the
>months to come.

I am getting pretty tired of seeing this idea brought up.
Face it, there are only two possibilities:  either a nuclear process
is producing the excess heat, or (due to sloppy measurements)
there is no excess heat.  Excess heat of the magnitude that Pons and
Fleischmann are claiming *cannot be due to a chemical reaction.*

To quote Pons:  "Heat is the primary evidence that it's nuclear.  If you
take all possible hydrogen in the reaction and burn it (a chemical
reaction), you get two watts per cubic centimeter; we get 20 times that
much energy."

Jim Kowalczyk

      James_J_Kowalczyk at cup.portal.com
      Kowalczyk at chemistry.utah.edu

From: rim at csadfa.oz (Bob McKay)
Newsgroups: sci.physics.fusion
Subject: Re: Pons and Fleischmann -- and Paul Kammerer (long, a bit flamey?)
Message-ID: <1879 at csadfa.oz>
Date: 22 Jun 89 06:22:28 GMT
References: <24528 at mordor.s1.gov>
Organization: Dept. of Computer Science, University College, UNSW, 
ADFA, Canberr
* a, Australia

 From article <24528 at mordor.s1.gov>, by lip at voyager..ARPA (Loren I. Petrich):
>  .... P and F have repeatedly claimed
>  that they cannot give away important details before their patent
>  application goes through; they have claimed that they will be more
>  forthcoming by the end of the summer. I personally do not find this
>  patent-application excuse very convincing; it seems that they have
>  well-documented priority over anyone else in this field....

Essentially this comment has come up in a few postings regarding F & P. It
reflects a concentration on purely American patent law. In most of the rest
of the World, publication of any sort prior to the filing of the patent
automatically invalidates the patent. A number of US companies have been badly
burned by this - I imagine U of U just don't want to add their names 
to the list

Bob McKay                  Phone ISD:   +61 62 68 8169      STD: (062) 68 8169
Dept. Computer Science          ACSNET,CSNET:   rim at csadfa.cs.adfa.oz
Aust. Defence Force Academy     UUCP:   ...!uunet!munnari!csadfa.cs.adfa.oz!rim
Canberra ACT 2600 AUSTRALIA     ARPA:   rim%csadfa.cs.adfa.oz at uunet.uu.net

From: heuring at boulder.Colorado.EDU (Vincent Heuring)
Newsgroups: sci.physics.fusion
Subject: Re: Pons and Fleischmann response
Message-ID: <9780 at boulder.Colorado.EDU>
Date: 29 Jun 89 21:55:20 GMT
References: <24562 at mordor.s1.gov>
Sender: news at boulder.Colorado.EDU
Reply-To: heuring at boulder.Colorado.EDU (Vincent Heuring)
Organization: University of Colorado, Boulder

In article <24562 at mordor.s1.gov> lip at s1-amid.UUCP () writes:
>        Well, at least I stimulated some discussion on why Pons and
>Fleischmann have been evasive about the details of their techniques. I
>think that one really has to wonder why they hide behind their concern
>about the protection of their patent rights. It seems that, if the
>effect they claim is real, that they have priority over everybody
>else. And with all the negative results that others have reported,
>they at least have the responsibility to tell others what they had
>been doing wrong.
>        I think P and F will have a lot to answer for, leading the
>rest of the scientific community on a wild goose chase as they have
>been doing. If they know something that the rest of us do not, they
>should tell. If not, they should admit that they goofed. Otherwise...

Well, of course, time will tell.  My personal opinion is that P&F
don't know what's going on, in a fundamental sense.  They have observed
an apparently inexplicable phenomenon, but at this point they can't really
explain it.  In fact, they can't always even reproduce it.

Now patent applications can be for

         1) A novel composition of matter, or

         2) A new process or way of doing things.

If they don't yet know what's going on completely, they can't completely
specify a composition of matter *or* a new process, completely
enough so that it can be reproduced by "one skilled in the art."

In other words, I suspect they are still in the early phases of trying
to spell out *exactly* how to produce excess head from their system,
what the important parameters of this process are, and possible extensions
such as other metals, etc.  And until they can, they are wise to keep their
mouths shut, less they give somebody else a leg up in what could be
the most lucrative patent ever granted.  What would you do, lip?

  Vincent Heuring     Dep't of Electrical & Computer Engineering
  University of Colorado - Boulder        heuring at boulder.Colorado.EDU

From: schow at bnr-public.uucp (Stanley Chow)
Newsgroups: sci.physics.fusion
Subject: Re: Problems with Fusion Reactions and Pathological Science (long)
Date: 7 Jul 89 18:27:12 GMT
References: <24588 at mordor.s1.gov>
Sender: news at bnr-fos.UUCP
Reply-To: schow%BNR.CA.bitnet at relay.cs.net (Stanley Chow)
Organization: Bell-Northern Research, Ottawa, Canada

---- Repeat offer  ----

In response to your article <24528 at mordor.s1.gov>  comparing P&F to
Lamarck, Kammerer, Lysenko. I offered in article <643 at bnr-fos.UUCP> to let
you bet "on a sure thing". The offer still stands.
The highlights of the offer:
  - If P&F are wrong or cheated, you win minimum of five to one.
  - If P&F cheated, you win ten to one.

Since you are so sure that CNF cannot be happening, I have no idea why
you are not jumping at this chance. Just think, you can be as famous
as Nathan Lewis by being the first man to *publicly* bet against P&F. :-)

----- End of offer ---

Incidentally, for those people interested, I have received no bets
at all. To those who have sent encouraging mail, thank you.

-- Get on soap box for a tirade against "Physics-centric" views ---

In article <24588 at mordor.s1.gov> lip at s1-voyager.UUCP () writes:
  [A long argument why CNF cannot work according to current physics,
   complete with a calculation of thebranching ratios.     SC]

>        Thus, neutrons are an inevitable byproduct of fusion
>reactions, and their presence at appropriate energies should be a good
>index, superior to simple heat production.
This shows a very biased view point. You go through your calculations
in particle physics and say it can't be fusion. But calculation of
chemical energies show the heat cannot be or chemical or crystaline
phase transitions. Are you saying your view of particle physics totally
overrides the chemical views?

Given the current state of affairs:
   1) There is heat being observed by multiple groups.
   2) Some of the groups observing heat have given detailed
      description of their experiments. Consensus appears to
      be that the heat is real. No simple "killer-defect" here.
   3) Some groups have observed T to be increasing over time.
   4) The people who did the T measerments know what they are
      doing. The magnitude of T is too large to be contemination.
   5) Various control experiments with different setups give
      very confused signals as to what is going on.
   6) Many groups cannot duplicate either heat or T.

The conclusions that I class as *unreasonable* are:
   1) Many otherwise competent groups have screwed up in their
      respective specialty.
   2) Many otherwise "straight" people are participating in a
      gigiantic hoax.
   3) Many independent groups are "deluded" into "believing".
      Remember, canels on Mars are seen by human eyes whereas
      heat is measured by thermometer.
   4) The "believers" have enough "psychic" infleuence to make
      the thermometers and counters read the desired results.

Other conclusions that I class as *unlikely*:
   1) Conservation of energy is broken.
   2) Spontaneous conversion of matter into energy.
   3) New conservation law that favors some reaction branches.

This leaves me with the only *reasonable* conclusion:
   Nuclear fusion is happening, but with some unknown mechanism
   to suppress N, or change branching ratio, or ...

Assuming something unknown is happening, why should I assume that
it is chemical when there are some many more possibilities in
Quantum mechanics, QED, etc.?

>        Effects that would invalidate these conclusions, (1)
>suppressing neutrons and (2) enhancing internal conversion, would be
>very important discoveries -- if they existed. But the supposed
>"evidence" is ambiguous at best, and the theory behind these
>conclusions seems very well-established.
As I understand it, there is also "very well-established" theory that
says the heat is not chemical in origin. If anything, these theories
are better established and more throughly studied.

-- Get off soap box. Run to my ever-ready flame-resistant suit. ---

Stanley Chow        BitNet:  schow at BNR.CA
BNR                 UUCP:    ..!psuvax1!BNR.CA.bitnet!schow
(613) 763-2831               ..!utgpu!bnr-vpa!bnr-fos!schow%bnr-public
Me? Represent other people? Don't make them laugh so hard.

From: vac at sam.cs.cmu.edu (Vincent Cate)
Newsgroups: sci.physics.fusion
Subject: CNF Paper Archive
Message-ID: <5342 at pt.cs.cmu.edu>
Date: 28 Jun 89 22:31:54 GMT
Organization: Carnegie-Mellon University, CS/RI
Below is a list of the papers I have in my archive.  If you have any
papers that I do not have (especially if they are in ascii) please
send me mail.

    Vince Cate
    internet:   vac at cs.cmu.edu   or   hpda!vcate at hplabs.hp.com
    bitnet:     s171vc09 at cmccvb

PS   I just posted gcmg.ascii to sci.physics.fusion from a computer
      in California, so you may get this before that paper gets to you.

sum1  Summary of "Fleischmann-Pons" type experiments.
       Dave Mack

sum2  Summary of "Jones-Frascatti" type experiments.
       Dave Mack

gcmg "Dynamic Response of Thermal Neutron Measurements in Electrochemically
      Produced Cold Fusion Subject to Pulsed Current"
      J. R. Granada, J. Converti, R. E. Mayer, G. Guido, P. C. Florido,
      N. E. Patino, L. Soverhart, S. Gomez and A. Larreteguy
      Centro Atomico Bariloche and Instituto Balseiro,
        Comision Nacional de Energia Atomica and Universidad Nacional de Cuyo

srb  "Electochemically initiated cold fusion of deuterium"
      K. S. V. Santhanam, J. Rangarajan, O'Neil Braganza, S. K. Haram,
      N. M. Limaye & K. C. Mandal
      Chemical Physics Group, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research
      Bombay 400 055, India

pp   "The Reported Conversion of Hydrogen into Helium"
      "The Transmutation of Hydrogen into Helium"
      Fritz Paneth and Kurt Peters
      Papers in the 1926 issues of Nature.

kkr "Calorimetric Studies of Electrolysis of D2O and H2O using
           a Palladium Cathode"
      E. Krishnakumar, V. Krishnamurthy, U.T. Raheja, C. Badrinathan,
           F.A. Rajgara and D. Mathur
      Laboratory for Atomic and Molecular Physics
      Tata Institute of Fundamental Research  --  India

lb0 "Solid-State Effects Cannot Enhace the Cold Fusion Rate Enough"
     A. J. Legget and G. Baym
     Dept of Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

lb  "Can "Solid-State" Effects Enhace the Cold Fusion Rate?"
     A. J. Legget and G. Baym
     Dept of Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nfl "Evidence of Emission of Neutrons From a Titanium-Deuterium System"
     A. De Ninno, A. Frattolillo, G. Lollobattista, L. Martinis, M. Martone,
          L. Mori, S. Podda, F. Scaramuzzi
     ENA, Dip. TIB, U.S. Fisica Applicata, Centro Ricerche Energia Frascati,
     C. P. 65-00044 Frascati, Rome, Italy
h4   "Dephasing in Coherent DD Fusion and the Long Chain Model"
      Peter L. Hagelstein
      Research Laboratory of Electronics - MIT

cam  "Cold Nuclear Fusion: Where's the Heat?  - Just a Simple Minded
       (JASM) Theory not using Muons Bosons, or DD reactions"
      C. A. Melendres
      Argonne National Laboratory

aps  Abstracts from the American Physical Society's
      Special Session on Cold Fusion.
      May 1-2, 1989
      aps.a, aps.b     -- Two pages listing first 20 papers
      aps.1.ps.Z, to aps.40.ps.Z  - Abstracts of papers
      Note that 13 was withdrawn.

~fp  "Electrochemically Induced Nuclear Fusion of Deuterium"
      Martin Fleischmann -  Dept of Chemistry, University of Southampton
      Stanley Pons - Dept of Chemistry, University of Utah
      Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry and Interfacial Electrochemsitry
      April 10,  Volume 261, No 2a
      -- NOTE - This is in your library already.  I did not scan it in
                because it has a copyright; however, it is nearly the
                same as "fp" below.

cjh  "Cold Nuclear Fusion in Metallic Hydrogen and Normal Metals"
      Charles J. Horowitz
      Physics Department and Nuclear Theory Center - Indiana University
      Submitted to Physical Review C

dcb  "Gammas from Cold Nuclear Fusion"
      David C. Bailey
      Department of Physics - University of Toronto
      April 20, 1989

sek  "Enhancement of cold fusion rates by fluctuations"
      S. E. Koonin
      Institute for Theoretical Physics
      University of California, Santa Barbara
      Submitted to Physical Review Letters, April 19, 1989

kn   "Cold fusion in isotopic hydrogen molecules"
      S. E. Koonin and M. Nauenberg
      Institute for Theoretical Physics
      University of California, Santa Barbara
      Submitted to Nature, April 7, 1989
ws   "Two Innocent Chemists Look at Cold Fusion"
      Cheves Walling and Jack Simons
      Chemistry Department, University of Utah

h1   "A Simple Model for Coherent DD Fusion in the Presence of a Lattice"
      Peter L. Hagelstein
      Research Laboratory of Electronics - MIT
      April 10, 1989

h2   "Phonon Interactions in Coherent Fusion"
      Peter L. Hagelstein
      Research Laboratory of Electronics - MIT

h3   "Rates for Neutron and Tritium Production in Coherent DD Fusion"
      Peter L. Hagelstein
      Research Laboratory of Electronics - MIT
      April 10, 1989

gcm   "Catalysis of Deuterium Fusion in Metal Hydrides by Cosmic Ray Muons."
       M. W. Guinan, G. F. Chapline, and R. W. Moir
       Submitted to Physical Review Letters
       Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
       April 7 1989
rj   "Theoretical Limits on Cold Fusion in Condensed Matter"
       J. Rafelski, M. Gajda and D.Harley - University of Arizona
       S.E. Jones -  Brigham Young University
       March 27, 1989

fp    "Electrochemically Induced Nuclear Fusion of Deuterium"
       Martin Fleischmann -  University of Southampton
       Stanley Pons - University of Utah
       March 20, 1989

jpr   "Observation of Cold Nuclear Fusion in Condensed Matter"
       Jones, Palmer, Czirr, Decker, Jensen, Thorne, Taylor
                - Brigham Young University
       Rafelski - University of Arizona
       March 23, 1989


1.2 Jones Experiments
1.2.1 Jones, Brigham Young University, Utah, USA
         Claimed results are ~0.04 fusions/sec.
1.2.2 Bertin, Instituto Nazionale Di Fisica Nucleare, Bologna, Italy
        "Work in collaboration with Bologna in the Gran Sasso using
         liquid scintillators with pulse-shape discrimination.  The
         neutron signal seen in a counter near the cell turns on and
         off with the cell current, while a counter remote from the
         cell shows nothing. They see a signal of about 50 neutrons per
         hour lasting for about 3 hours, before it turns off. There is
         some evidence that the energy is 2.5 MeV, but the energy
         resolution is poor. Overall, it's a 7 sigma effect."
1.2.3 Tanihasi. Korea
         Pd electrodes were loaded to a D/Pd ratio of 0.8 +/- 0.1.
         The neutron spectra with D2O and H2O were the same after
         20 hours.
1.2.4 Broer, AT&T Bell Labs, USA
         Electrolytic cells with 3 different Pd cathodes. The cells
         were in a large box with Pb and borax walls and then scintillators
         to veto cosmic ray muons. Neutrons were slowed in polyethylene
         round the cells and the gamma rays produced measured by capture
         by protons (2.24 MeV) and by 23Na and 127I which give gammas in
         the range 3.5 to 7 MeV in the NaI and is the more sensitive.
         After 4 weeks they obtained a limit of < 0.007 n/sec/g Pd which
         corresponds to <2.2 E-24 fusions/dd pair/sec which is less than
         the Jones et al. value for titanium.
1.2.5 Emmoth, Sweden
         Used a BF3 counter close to an electrolytic cell with Pd and
         Pt electrodes. The efficiency was 0.1%. Most of their runs
         gave no effect, but they showed two plots where there were
         2 or 3 peaks whose existence did not seem to be correlated
         with any other activity. They got up to 240 n/s. They were
         aware of moisture and vibration effects on their BF3 counter.
         They seem to have done no checks such as running with H2O.
1.2.6 Ewing, Sandia National Lab, USA
         Reported no neutrons giving a limit of < 100 n/ hour using
         3He counters around Pd cells.
1.2.7 Unknown, LBL - UC Berkeley, USA
         For currents of 0.25 to 1.25 A, no neutrons corresponding
         to a limit of 1 E-22 fusions/dd pair per sec.
1.3 Scaramuzzi Experiments
1.3.1   Scaramuzzi, Centro Ricerche Energia, Frascati, Italy
         They had 3 positive runs out of 10 attempts. There was some
         measure of correlation with changes of temperature or pressure.
1.3.2 Menlove, LANL, USA
         The random emissions observed with three detectors varied in
         significance: 4.3 sigma, 5.3 sigma and 11 sigma.
1.3.3   Tommasini, Trieste
         This yielded 1:1 D:Nb ratio in the beta phase. Cylinders were
         then cooled first to room temperature, then to LN2 temperature.
         Detector: two-channel proportional counter for recoil protons.
         Procedure: alternating 30-min periods with the Nb cylinder in the
         reactor and with it out. ["For a day" 8 hrs?].
         Results: Signal of 300+/- 60 (5 std dev) above background.
         [More info available.] [Submitted by Steve Koonin]
1.3.4 Blencoe, ORNL, USA
         This was a null result in a Frascati-like experiment.
1.3.5 Magni, ENFA CASACCIA, Italy
         A sponge of titanium is loaded with D2, cooled and then pumped.
         A small peak of neutrons was observed after about 700 minutes.
1.3.6 Massoni, Italy
         Blades of Ti, 0.5 mm thick, heated very quickly (20 sec.) to
         1000 degrees C., add D2 and cool to 500 degrees. The BF3
         counters were inside shielding. Bursts of neutrons were
         observed when the conditions were changed.
1.3.7 Furth, Princeton Plasma Physics Lab, USA
         Used BF3 counters and found their background counting rate
         was highly variable from 5 to 30 counts/hour. With Pd cathodes
         and with gas-loaded Ti turnings, no neutrons were observed at a
         level of 1 n/s for both the d-d and p-d reactions, which is
         not lower than Jones et al.
1.3.8 Ellegaard, Neils Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark
         Used 10 rods of Pd with 500 mA current and 3 litre NE213
         detector surrounding the cells and also Ti loaded with D2
         gas under pressure and heated to 500 degrees and cooled
         to liquid nitrogen temperature then warmed to room temp.
         No neutrons were found.
1.3.9 Hill, Iowa State University, Iowa, USA
         Reported no neutrons from cells with a Pd cathode at a
         lower rate than F&P. With Ti loaded with D2 gas absorbed
         at 110 degrees and up to 660 psia where the achieved a
         maximum loading of D/Ti of 1.9 (this is possible with
         Ti not Pd) no neutrons were observed above a counting
         rate of 6.5  counts per 10 min.
1.3.10 Fernandez, National Institute for Nuclear Reasearch, Mexico

         Charged electrodes, one of steel and the other of titanium
         and magnesium, in an atmosphere of enriched deuterium. "A
         considerable number of neutrons per second" were produced.
1.4 Other CNF Experiments
1.4.1 Paneth/Peters, 1926
         Towards the end of the paper they say that they were looking for
         gamma radiation, but could not detect any with their electroscopes.

         In a paper published in Berichte d. Dt. chem. Ges. vol. 60B,
         p. 808 (1927), Fritz Paneth, Kurt Peters and Paul Guenther
         described the repetition of the experiment in the Baker
         laboratory in Cornell University (NY). The outcome of this
         work is that they had underestimated the effects of some of the
         error sources. Among other things, they found that their palladium
         asbestos probably contained some helium.

         In papers in die Naturwissenschaften (vol. 15, p. 379 (1927))
         and Nature (vol. 119, p. 706-707 (1927)) Fritz Paneth declares
         the results to be false. Quotation from Chemical Abstracts:
         "The recently announced results on transmutation of H to He
         proved on further investigation to be false. Glass and asbestos,
         which do not give off He in the presence of O_2 or in vacuo,
         yield quantities of He of the order of 10^-9 cm^3 on heating
         in a H_2 atm. One day's standing in contact with air is
         sufficient to cause this adsorption."
1.4.2 Tandberg, 1927
         Electrolytic saturation of a Pd wire with D, followed by
         exploding wire ignition. Null result - radioactive particles.
1.4.3 Kondo, University of Tokyo/RIKEN, Japan
         Used a muon beam to measure the rate of neutron production from
         muon absorption in electrolysed Pd.  The rate was about 0.12
         neutrons per muon, not 300.  They pointed out that there are
         many problems with trying to use muon-catalyzed fusion to
         obtain Jones level neutron production.  The main problems
         are that muons are primarily captured on Pd initially and
         after inducing a fusion, and that fusion is not rapidly
         induced even after capture on deuterium because the equilibrium
         spacing between D's is so large.
1.4.4 Myers, Sandia National Laboratory, USA
         After the beam was turned off, no significant rate of
         fusion was observed despite the loading being much higher
         than can be obtained by electrolytic or gas pressure methods.
         An upper limit of 2 E-22 fusions/dd pair/sec was estimated.
         Ti and Zr were also tried with null results.
1.4.5 Mueller, LANL, USA
        A small instantaneous pulse
         was observed. The authors conclude that less than 1 E4 neutrons
         were generated.
1.4.6 Gaudreau, MIT, USA
         Passed 80 KeV/c muons into Pd and Ti targets at a rate of
         1000 muons/sec/cm2. The authors are still interpreting the
         results but indicate no dramatic effects were observed.
1.4.7 Nagamine, KEK, Japan
         Passed muons into Pd samples loaded to a ratio of D/Pd = 0.6,
         and unloaded. They observed no differences. They deduced a
         neutron production rate of < 0.012 n per muon. It was concluded
         that the rate of producing neutrons from cosmic ray muons
         was < 1.3 E-6 per sec.
1.4.8 Unknown, Colorado School of Mines, Colorado, USA
         Implanted D ions of 95 KeV in 1.5 micron thick foils of Pd
         giving D/Pd ratios of 1.0 or above. No significant effect
         was found giving a limit of < 0.2 n/dd pair/sec or
         < 5E-10 Watts/cm3 of Pd.

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