Article 4706 of sci.physics: Subject: Electrochemically Induced Nuclear Fusion of Deuteriu

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Article 4706 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!rutgers!cs.utexas.edu!ut-emx!ethan From: ethan@ut-emx.UUCP (Ethan Tecumseh Vishniac) Newsgroups: sci.physics Subject: Electrochemically Induced Nuclear Fusion of Deuterium (preprint) Keywords: Pons Fleischmann Fusion Message-ID: <11627@ut-emx.UUCP> Date: 31 Mar 89 17:07:13 GMT Organization: The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas Lines: 55 Posted: Fri Mar 31 12:07:13 1989 I have here a copy of a preprint by Pons and Fleischmann which has been submitted to the Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry. They list the paper as accepted but no publication date is given. The paper is all over this department (Astronomy!!) so I assume that it is widely distributed in the U.S.. Most of what is in it is more or less a rehash of what the rumor mill here has already thrown around. A few relevant quotes follow: "in research on thermonuclear fusion, the effects are expressed as a percentage of the breakeven where 100% implies that the thermal output equals the input (neglecting the power required to drive the equipment). In electrochemical experiments we have additionally to take into account whether breakeven should be based the Joule heat or total energy supplied to the cell. Furthermore, in the latter case the energy supplied depends on the nature of the anode reaction. Table 2 lists three such figures of merit and it can be seen that we can already make reasonable projections to 1000%. " Table 3 is missing from my copy. "Use of equation (2) then indicates that the reaction (v) [note: this is tritium production] takes place to the extent of 1-2x10^4 atoms s^-1 which is consistent with the measurements of the neutron flux [note:due to helium production].." "On the other hand, the data on enthalpy generation would require rates for reactions (v) and (vi) [note:tritium and helium production] in the range 10^11-10^14 atoms s^-1. It is evident that reactions (v) and (vi) are only a small part of the overall reaction scheme and the other nuclear processes must be involved." "Finally, we urge the use of extreme caution in such experiments: a plausible interpretation of the experiment using the Pd-cube electrode is in terms of ignition. " [note: this is the experiment in which the apparatus and the fume hood were destroyed.] The bottom line seems to be that the calorimetry results are the basis for their claims of net energy production, althought the appearance of fusion is, by itself, extremely interesting. It is worth noting that the BYU result confirms only the appearance of fusion, not the high energy production rate. Clearly, if they are right then something *very* strange is going on. I will be happy to post such experimental details as I have upon request. Being an astrophysicist, it is not clear to me which details of their setup are of general interest. -- I'm not afraid of dying Ethan Vishniac, Dept of Astronomy, Univ. of Texas I just don't want to be {charm,ut-sally,ut-emx,noao}!utastro!ethan there when it happens. (arpanet) ethan@astro.AS.UTEXAS.EDU - Woody Allen (bitnet) ethan%astro.as.utexas.edu@CUNYVM.CUNY.EDU These must be my opinions. Who else would bother? Article 4722 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!rutgers!apple!bloom-beacon!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!mailrus!wasatch!donn From: donn@wasatch.UUCP (Donn Seeley) Newsgroups: sci.physics Subject: Pons's talk was closed... Summary: but we did get some reports Message-ID: <1493@wasatch.UUCP> Date: 1 Apr 89 00:25:52 GMT Organization: University of Utah CS Dept Lines: 69 Posted: Fri Mar 31 19:25:52 1989 Originally the talk was going to be open to the public. Then it was restricted to faculty and to College of Science grad students, with any extra seats going first come, first serve. In the event, they tried to limit it to just faculty from the Colleges of Science and Engineering, with a dean at the door to throw out people they didn't recognize; an overflow room with A/V was organized for other faculty and grad students. No recording was permitted; a friend with a tape recorder had it confiscated. I haven't yet found anyone who took useful notes, unfortunately. I didn't get in, not being faculty or a grad student, but some friends did. They came back with a press release, which I will copy out here: BACKGROUND FOR NUCLEAR FUSION SEMINAR FRIDAY, MARCH 31, 1989 2008 HENRY EYRING CHEMISTRY BUILDING An article written by Drs B Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann describing their nuclear fusion research at the University of Utah has been accepted for publication by the Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry. The article is expected to appear in the publication in late April or early May. In the article the researchers state: 'We conclude that the conventional deuterium fusion reactions are only a small part of the overall reaction scheme and that other nuclear processes must be involved.' There is not yet a complete understanding of where the heat is coming from. Fusion occurs in the cells but fusion reactions do not account for all the heat that is observed. As we stated at the press conference last week and on several occasions since then, the investigators believe that no chemical reaction can account for the heat output so they attribute it to other nuclear processes. Evidence for nuclear fusion includes: generation of heat over long periods that is proportional to the volume of the electrode and reactions that lead to the generation of neutrons and tritium which are expected by-products of nuclear fusion. The researchers have also co-authored and submitted a second article to Nature for consideration for publication. Dr James J Brophy Vice President for Research The crowd was large, but not as large as it could have been. The line went around the courtyard; the halls of the building were crammed. Several hundred people turned up, perhaps as many as a thousand. There were a couple TV crews who were thrown out of the halls and reduced to filming the milling masses. Campus security was tight -- no one was permitted in without an ID, and in the main auditorium everyone was supposedly identified by face (although some people apparently got in anyway). Everyone I talked to who actually got in came back with the impression that the experiments are for real. On the other hand the actual descriptions are still quite vague, as you can tell from the press release. I picked up a fair amount of hearsay from attendees, some of it contradictory; I may post some of it later if I can get it to make sense. I gather that one of the main points, to no one's surprise, was that the experimental apparatus is VERY DANGEROUS and can lead to serious damage and injury if not handled properly. Our tape just has security people shouting on it, Donn Seeley University of Utah CS Dept donn@cs.utah.edu 40 46' 6"N 111 50' 34"W (801) 581-5668 utah-cs!donn Article 4729 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!lanl!hc!pprg.unm.edu!unmvax!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!mailrus!wasatch!ch-tkr From: ch-tkr@wasatch.UUCP (Timothy K Reynolds) Newsgroups: sci.physics,sci.chem,sci.research,sci.space Subject: summary of Dr. Stanley Pons seminar of 3/31/89 (long, > 200 lines ) Keywords: cold fusion, notes. (long, > 200 lines ) Message-ID: <1495@wasatch.UUCP> Date: 1 Apr 89 04:51:09 GMT Organization: University of Utah CS Dept Lines: 225 Xref: dasys1 sci.physics:4729 sci.chem:27 sci.research:659 sci.space:8397 Posted: Fri Mar 31 23:51:09 1989 The following is the text of a handout which was given to most of the attendees of Dr. Pons seminar at the University of Utah on 3/31/89. (reprinted w/o permission, but it was freely distributed) ^^^^^^^^^^^^begin text^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ BACKGROUND FOR NUCLEAR FUSION SEMINAR FRIDAY, MARCH 31, 1989 2008 HENRY EYRING CHEMISTRY BUILDING An article written by Drs. B. Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischman describing their nuclear fusion research at the U of U has been accepted for publication by the "Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry." The article is expected to appear in the publication in late April or early May. In the article the researchers state: "We conclude that the conventional deuterium fusion reactions are only a small part of the overall reaction scheme and that other nuclear processes must be involved." There is not yet a complete understanding of where the heat is coming from. Fusion occurs in the cells but fusion reactions do not account for all the heat that is observed. As we stated at the press conference last week and on several occasions since then, the investigators believe that no chemical reaction can account for the heat output so they attribute it to nuclear processes. Evidence for nuclear fusion includes; generation of heat over long periods that is proportional to the volume of the electrode and reactions that lead to the generation of neutrons and tritium which are expected by-products of nuclear fusion. The researchers have also co-authored and submitted a second article to "Nature" for consideration for publication Dr. James J. Brophy Vice President for Research University of Utah ^^^^^^^^^^^^^end text^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ What follows is a summary of my notes from the lecture by Dr. Pons. Due to limited seating, I watched the lecture on a projection TV. Not very good resolution, so I missed some of the equations, but I think I got most of it. Also the physicist in our group didn't get a seat in either lecture hall and was not able to verify my notes/impressions. He did look at my notes with me though and helped clear some things up. Electrochemically Induced Fusion By Dr. B. Stanley Pons Dr. Pons began with a brief history of the work began by he and Fleischman. Initially, their interests were in the development of a metallic hydrogen material for use as a semiconductor. They realized that immense pressures were required in a lattice for this to occur. However, they theorized that it would be possible to bring about the equivalent of this immense pressure by electrochemical methods. From these initial musings, they also considered whether this "electrochemical pressure" could be used to fuse like nuclei (deuterium). The initial experiment used a cube of Pd (size not stated) in D2O at high current density (again not stated). A Geiger counter was used to detect any radiation from the fusion reaction of D. However no radiation was detected. The experiment was discontinued by reducing the current density, and shortly thereafter (overnight I think is what he said) the experimental apparatus was vaporized. Left approximately 1/10 of the initial Pd. Current apparatus uses a Pd rod in 0.1M D2O in a cell which has been widely seen in the media. It consists of a Pd rod surrounded by a Pt coil in a special made glass container. There are openings for charging and adding D2O, measuring temperature, and heaters. The use of rod gives better control of the surface to volume ratio. During electrolysis of the D2O the following reactions take place: D2O + e- <---> Da + OD- Da <---> Dlat Da + D2O + e- <---> D2 + OD- where Da is deuterium adsorbed on the surface of the Pd rod, and Dlat is deuterium diffused into the lattice of the Pd. Before the surface of the electrode is saturated with Da, the D diffuses into the lattice of the Pd. The evidence suggests that the deuterium diffuses into the lattice as deuterons and electrons. The electrons go to the k band of the lattice. Dr. Pons stated that the potential of this electrochemical couple is 0.8V. In terms of pressure to get the same degree of difference in chemical potential = 10**27 atmospheres. Dr. Pons explained a control experiment where they used a closed cell to detect tritium (else some tritium would be lost as by exchange with D2O). Tritium was detected, and its concentration increased over time. Also the neutron flux was measured as 10**4 n/s. This is 3X higher than background and was considered statistically significant. However, the reactions to produce tritium and 3He do not explain the amount of heat produced. In this same vein, he pointed out that their experiments indicated that the heat produced was proportional to the volume of the electrode used, not the surface area of the electrode. This indicates that the process is not electrochemical in nature. An energy density of 26W/cc of electrode was calculated. One experiment produced 4MJ of heat in 120 hours. He reiterated that this could not be due to any known physical or chemical process. Since the fusing of deuterium is only part of the overall reaction scheme, other as yet unknown processes produce the rest of the heat which is detected. Dr. Pons believes these unknown processes must be nuclear processes. He also surmised that the deuterons existed in the Pd lattice as a low temperature plasma which is shielded by electrons. Dr. Pons then answered several questions from Faculty members (there were no microphones in the room with the graduate students where I was). The content of his responses are summarized below. This reaction is diffusion controlled, with the diffusion coefficient for deuterons in Pd given as 10^-7 cm^2/s. The production rate of tritium was found to match that of the neutrons. Although the cross-section of Pd is too small to allow for significant reaction with energetic neutrons, it may react with neutrons back-scattered from the heavy water. No assay of the Pd electrodes has been undertaken to check for activation by-products of Pd. The ignition/vaporization of the initial experiment was caused by a steep concentration gradient of D+ as the current density was decreased. This gave rise to compression (even greater than *normal*) as the D+ species moved out from the lattice in a radial direction. This "shock" resulted in the vaporization. No 2.45Mev neutrons were detected. He speculated that these neutrons may be consumed by reaction with Li: 7Li + n + 2.45MeV ---> 3T + 3He + n 6Li + n ---> 3T +3He + 4.5MeV The concentration of the deuterons in the Pd lattice is greater than 0.67 (deuterons/Pd atoms) and is estimated to be 1.0 - 1.2. They are believed to cluster at the octahedral sites in the Pd (Pd has a face centered cubic crystal structure). In looking for products of fusion, 3He was not seen but 4He was. Part of the reason for not seeing 3He is due to the apparatus used (apparently not very airtight) and instruments used. Other metals (which were not specified) were tried as electrodes but no heat was detected. Radiation was not monitored. No experiments have been carried out in magnetic fields to determine quadrupole effects. He admitted that spin-spin interactions could have an effect. The reaction is diffusion controlled. In a 0.4 - 0.5mm rod with X=10^-7 cm^2/s, the time required to start the reaction is [ (0.2)^2 / X ]. He did not know the effective mass of the electron carriers in the Pd matrix. He felt that the addition of hydrostatic pressure to the cell would have a negligible affect on the rate of the reaction. The potential gradient at the D2O Pd interface is on the order of 10^12 V/m. This gradient can not be achieved in gas or vacuum phase conditions. They have recently achieved a 1W in 10W out energy ratio. Essentially no neutrons or tritium are detected until the fusion process begins. He jokingly predicted that 100 years would be needed to bring this technology to commercial use. He admitted that the results were just as puzzling to him as they are to many others. He openly admits that much more work is needed to understand this phenomenon. (He did not seem to resent any questions, and was honest in his responses.) He ended his talk with a WARNING. Please do not DO NOT attempt to repeat this experiments until you have read the journal articles or have consulted with Drs. Pons or Fleischman directly. The initial experiment which vaporized is no joke. Please consult with them or wait for the articles to appear before you begin a possibly dangerous experiment. Please act responsibly in this regard. [Please remember, these are my personal notes taken during a lecture presented in less than optimum conditions. If there are any gross errors, they are probably my fault. As I said, I briefly went over these notes with a physicist from or lab, and he did not point out any glaring errors. Nonetheless, the information presented is essentially that presented by Dr. Pons. No sound or video recordings were allowed, so the opportunity to check my notes was limited. In other words please don't flame me.] ch-tkr@wasatch.utah.edu Behind the Zion Curtain Article 4734 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!rutgers!apple!bloom-beacon!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!mailrus!wasatch!donn From: donn@wasatch.UUCP (Donn Seeley) Newsgroups: sci.physics Subject: Re: summary of Dr. Stanley Pons seminar of 3/31/89 Summary: Some more tidbits Keywords: cold fusion, notes Message-ID: <1496@wasatch.UUCP> Date: 1 Apr 89 08:14:00 GMT References: <1495@wasatch.UUCP> Organization: University of Utah CS Dept Lines: 68 Posted: Sat Apr 1 03:14:00 1989 I didn't get to see the presentation at all, unlike Tim Reynolds, and Tim definitely has the best notes I've seen so far. He's saved me a lot of work! I did manage to gather a few more interesting tidbits that Tim seems to have overlooked. Here are some of them: + Dr Pons's admonition to people who are attempting to duplicate his experiment and not succeeding was, 'Do your chemistry first!' (Or words to that effect...) Apparently he is not surprised that no official reports of success have been heard yet -- unless the apparatus is designed just right, it can take two weeks to get enough deuterium in the electrode. Two tricks to success are a small diameter electrode and a high deuterium concentration. Again, kiddies, DON'T TRY THIS AT HOME (not that every kitchen has palladium electrodes by the sink, or a D2O tap, of course). + The story goes that Pons's son was the person who found the missing apparatus when the original successful reaction blew up. The researchers hadn't expected anything interesting, and had sent the poor fellow to check the equipment later on, after turning the power down and going home. The beaker was smashed, wires were melted, most of the electrode was vaporized, the radiation detection tube was destroyed. The notes I have say that the current density was 250 amps / cm2 and it had been sharply cut in half before the accident occurred. Apparently you must be very gentle about adjusting the current. + One of the reasons why the experiment can be VERY DANGEROUS is that palladium in the wrong form or shape can blow up. I'm told that Pons wasn't very specific about mad-scientist activities in the Chemistry basement, but he did advise against powdered palladium, and electrodes with sharp corners. The original experiment apparently used an electrode with a square cross-section. + Pons apparently said that BYU does not have the same setup, but would not otherwise comment on their work. I've heard no new word on BYU patent applications; the U applications have already been filed. It may be possible for independent investigators to license the process from the U. + I've heard that the reason for holding the seminar in a relatively small room, instead of an auditorium like Kingsbury Hall or the Huntsman Center (the basketball arena), was that Pons 'didn't want a circus' (not a quote from Pons). It's hard to imagine Pons holding an open seminar from now on that will be anything except a circus... At least two local TV stations plus the national NBC News crew were on campus today. NBC News presented bits of an interview with Dr Pons in his lab and office. The correspondent had to stand outside in the rain and wind to file his report with the appropriate backdrop... The physicists who were skeptical last night were more charitable today after attending the seminar; they no longer implied that it could be a hoax, although they still doubt that there is significant fusion. One smiled and said that physicists say that the excess heat must be due to chemistry, the chemists maintain that it must be nuclear physics... Still, people who saw the presentation have said that the analysis of break-even was well-presented and persuasive, with second-order effects identified and accounted for. 10 watts out for every 1 watt in for long periods sounds pretty good to me even for a chemical reaction... Still don't have a reactor in my office yet, Donn Seeley University of Utah CS Dept donn@cs.utah.edu 40 46' 6"N 111 50' 34"W (801) 581-5668 utah-cs!donn Article 4745 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!rutgers!att!ihlpe!jho From: jho@ihlpe.ATT.COM (Yosi Hoshen) Newsgroups: sci.physics Subject: Re: summary of Dr. Stanley Pons seminar of 3/31/89 Keywords: cold fusion, notes Message-ID: <4638@ihlpe.ATT.COM> Date: 1 Apr 89 16:12:42 GMT References: <1495@wasatch.UUCP> <1496@wasatch.UUCP> Organization: AT&T Bell Laboratories - Naperville, Illinois Lines: 39 Posted: Sat Apr 1 11:12:42 1989 It seems to me that the simplest test Pons et. al. should have done and hopefully have done is to run their experiment with H2O and compare the results. The assumption is that hydrogen would not undergo cold nuclear reaction at the condition described by Pons. If that is the case than under the exact same conditions they should not get the large heat output. If there is only chemical reaction for both isotopes than the energy output difference should be related to the difference in the enthalpy of formation of H2O and D2O which is small as compared to nuclear reaction (Even if hydrogen goes nuclear reaction under the same conditions then there would be relatively large difference in energetics between D and H because the difference in output of the H and D in the nuclear reactions) Assuming that hydrogen does not ungo nuclear reaction (this could be checked by detecting neutron or other particles) than Pons at al. calculations should be able to account for the heat balance of the hydrogen reaction. At this point they claim that they cannot balance their energies unless they take into account a nuclear reaction. Well, if they could balance it for the hydrogen reaction, they would have a very convincing argument. Did they actually do any comparative experiments with H2O versus D2O? Finally, if their claim is true and they see nuclear reaction that produces energy but with neutron flax smaller than the normal fusion reaction by 10^9 then this is very good news. The major problem with fusion (D+D) is a high neutron flux which causes neutron activation of the surrounding materials including the palladium. This could imply that the rate of neutron activation would be smaller by 10^9 reducing the amount of radio active waste by the same factor. Another question what do you get if NaOD, KOD, RbOD are used instead of LiOD? Yosi Hoshen Article 4768 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!husc6!ukma!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!mailrus!iuvax!silver!chiaravi From: chiaravi@silver.bacs.indiana.edu (Lucius Chiaraviglio) Newsgroups: sci.physics,sci.chem,sci.research,sci.space Subject: Re: summary of Dr. Stanley Pons seminar of 3/31/89 (long, > 200 lines ) Summary: A couple of these equations don't add up; also, where does the lithium come from? Keywords: cold fusion, notes. Message-ID: <3604@silver.bacs.indiana.edu> Date: 3 Apr 89 06:51:10 GMT References: <1495@wasatch.UUCP> Reply-To: chiaravi@silver.UUCP (Lucius Chiaraviglio) Organization: Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology at Indiana University, Bloomington Lines: 41 Xref: dasys1 sci.physics:4768 sci.chem:33 sci.research:682 sci.space:8438 Posted: Mon Apr 3 01:51:10 1989 In article <1495@wasatch.UUCP> ch-tkr@wasatch.UUCP (Timothy K Reynolds) writes: > No 2.45Mev neutrons were detected. He speculated that these > neutrons may be consumed by reaction with Li: > > 7Li + n + 2.45MeV ---> 3T + 3He + n > 6Li + n ---> 3T +3He + 4.5MeV Neither of these equations is balanced -- the first contains 3 protons and 5 neutrons on the left as opposed to 3 protons and 4 neutrons on the right; the second contains 3 protons and 4 neutrons on the left as opposed to 3 protons and 3 neutrons on the right. Also, are you sure the second reaction is supposed to be exothermic? I think I have seen these before, but I can only remember the first one with any degree of accuracy: (7)Li + n --> (3)H + (4)He + n where the neutron comes out slower than it went in (thus supplying the energy for the reaction). I can't remember whether the second reaction should be (6)Li + n --> (3)H + (4)He or (6)Li + n --> (3)H + (3)He + n with the neutron again coming out slower than it went in. I saw these equations (obviously only one version of the second one, but I can't remember which one) in some report on conventional fusion experiments discussing ways to breed tritium. (I think this report was from the Princeton Plasma Fusion Physics Laboratory, but couldn't swear to that.) My other question is: these people used a cell with palladium and platinum electrodes and heavy water. Where would the lithium come from? I didn't hear any mention of lithium in the electrodes or in the solution before this article that I am replying to. -- | Lucius Chiaraviglio | ARPA: chiaravi@silver.bacs.indiana.edu BITNET: chiaravi@IUBACS.BITNET (IUBACS hoses From: fields; INCLUDE RET ADDR) ARPA-gatewayed BITNET: chiaravi%IUBACS.BITNET@vm.cc.purdue.edu Alt ARPA-gatewayed BITNET: chiaravi%IUBACS.BITNET@cunyvm.cuny.edu Article 4769 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!lanl!hc!pprg.unm.edu!unmvax!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!mailrus!cornell!uw-beaver!blake!oregon!rhaller From: rhaller@oregon.uoregon.edu Newsgroups: sci.physics,sci.chem,sci.research,sci.space Subject: Re: summary of Dr. Stanley Pons seminar of 3/31/89 (long, > 200 lines ) Message-ID: <523@oregon.uoregon.edu> Date: 1 Apr 89 10:41:18 GMT References: <1495@wasatch.UUCP> Organization: University of Oregon Lines: 9 Xref: dasys1 sci.physics:4769 sci.chem:34 sci.research:683 sci.space:8439 Posted: Sat Apr 1 05:41:18 1989 > > Current apparatus uses a Pd rod in 0.1M D2O in a cell which > has been widely seen in the media. It consists of a Pd rod > surrounded by a Pt coil in a special made glass container. > There are openings for charging and adding D2O, measuring > temperature, and heaters. The use of rod gives better If someone has details on the composition of the electrolyte solution, please post. Article 4742 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!rutgers!ucsd!ames!lll-winken!uunet!portal!cup.portal.com!James_J_Kowalczyk From: James_J_Kowalczyk@cup.portal.com Newsgroups: sci.physics,sci.chem,sci.research,sci.space,sci.space.shuttle Subject: Re: cold fusion seminar Message-ID: <16539@cup.portal.com> Date: 1 Apr 89 07:35:56 GMT References: <1464@wasatch.UUCP> Organization: The Portal System (TM) Lines: 43 Xref: dasys1 sci.physics:4742 sci.chem:29 sci.research:665 sci.space:8408 sci.space.shuttle:2667 Posted: Sat Apr 1 02:35:56 1989 Well, the seminar today at U of U by Stan Pons was poorly planned. About 2,000 people showed up for the 350 seats. So, they had another 300 or so "over-flow" seats in a room with a live video broadcast. Anyway, I did manage to get some data: The cell contains D2O, and LiOH. The Pd anode is a wire of about 4-5 mm diameter. Since the diffusion rate of D2 into Pd is ca. 10^-7 / sec, the apparatus must be running "a few weeks" to set up equilibrium conditions before fusion can occur. They have measured 2 meV gamma rays. They have measure neutrons being emitted at ca. 2x10^4 neutrons/sec. They have measure tritium released at the same rate as the neutrons ("within experimental error"). They have not measured the energy of the neutrons, but expect them to be 2.4 m eV. They have seen Helium 4, but not Helium 3 (!?), but are still looking. They don't think the neutrons are interacting with the palladium, but they have checked their palladium by elemental analysis after use, and they have not seen any evidence for changes. They had been getting out 4 times the energy put in as of last Thursday, but now it is up to 7-10 times (ignoring the heat produced at the cathode). That is, they are getting 26 times the energy put in, but most of it is Joule heating of the wires and heat produced by electrolysis of D2O. Warning by Pons: Don't try this without the proper precautions. Once after they had set up equilibrium conditions, they accidentally halved the current density in the Pd, and the Pd vaporized and all the D2O boiled away. Also, those neutrons are nothing to fool around with. **I am writing this with the aid of notes, but I do not guarantee that I have not made any mistakes. If something sounds ludicrous, I am sure you will let me know.** :) Jim Kowalczyk Kowalczyk@chemistry.utah.edu Article 32 of sci.chem: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!lanl!opus!dante!ted From: ted@dante.nmsu.edu (Ted Dunning) Newsgroups: sci.chem,sci.research,sci.physics Subject: cold fusion report Keywords: more report on pons' talk in utah Message-ID: <188@opus.NMSU.EDU> Date: 3 Apr 89 01:32:27 GMT Sender: news@nmsu.edu Followup-To: poster Lines: 318 Xref: dasys1 sci.chem:32 sci.research:681 sci.physics:4764 Posted: Sun Apr 2 20:32:27 1989 I was able to attend the pons lecture in utah in the main hall. i also discussed the lecture with a number of people afterwards and have the following impressions/corrections to the original posting in sci.physics.: Electrochemically Induced Fusion By Dr. B. Stanley Pons Dr. Pons began with a brief history of the work began by he and Fleischman. Initially, their interests were in the development of a metallic hydrogen material for use as a semiconductor. They realized that immense pressures were required in a lattice for this to occur. However, they theorized that it would be possible to bring about the equivalent of this immense pressure by electrochemical methods. From these initial musings, they also considered whether this "electrochemical pressure" could be used to fuse like nuclei (deuterium). The initial experiment used a cube of Pd (size not stated) in D2O at high current density (again not stated). A Geiger counter was used to detect any radiation from the fusion reaction of D. However no radiation was detected. The experiment was discontinued by reducing the current density, and shortly thereafter (overnight I think is what he said) the experimental apparatus was vaporized. Left approximately 1/10 of the initial Pd. the cube was 1cm3. the experiment consisted of running the electrolysis at 250 ma / cm2 for several weeks/months with no results. the current was cut to 125 ma / cm2 late one day, and the next morning the cube of palladium and the electrolysis cell were gone. a nearby geiger counter was also ruined. pons used the word 'vaporized' several times, but i wonder if what happened is really just that the pd melted, and consequently could no longer hold hydrogen. at the density quoted (1 atom D for each atom Pd), this would cause, at the least, a vigorous mechanical explosion, and much of the molten palladium would be spattered, if not atomized. since no detailed calorimetric data was kept for this experiment (and apparently the remainder of the cube is also not available), it is only tantalizing, and cannot be used in any way but anecdotal. it is true that the chemical energy contained in the hydrogen saturated cube was not sufficient to even completely melt the cube, it is not clear that the reaction was not caused by boiling some part of the electrolyte with attendant local heating, melting and mechanical/chemical exploscion. this is, however, perhaps the most viscerally interesting story released so far. the current apparatus uses pd rods of varying diameters from 1mm to 5mm. pons stated that work had also been done with larger diameters. the electrolyte is 0.1 M lithium deuteroxide formed by dissolving the pure metal in the d2o (to avoid h contamination). precharge time is on the order of weeks for rods of this size. Current apparatus uses a Pd rod in 0.1M D2O in a cell which has been widely seen in the media. It consists of a Pd rod surrounded by a Pt coil in a special made glass container. There are openings for charging and adding D2O, measuring temperature, and heaters. The use of rod gives better control of the surface to volume ratio. During electrolysis of the D2O the following reactions take place: D2O + e- <---> Da + OD- Da <---> Dlat Da + D2O + e- <---> D2 + OD- where Da is deuterium adsorbed on the surface of the Pd rod, and Dlat is deuterium diffused into the lattice of the Pd. Before the surface of the electrode is saturated with Da, the D diffuses into the lattice of the Pd. The evidence suggests that the deuterium diffuses into the lattice as deuterons and electrons. The electrons go to the k band of the lattice. Dr. Pons stated that the potential of this electrochemical couple is 0.8V. In terms of pressure to get the same degree of difference in chemical potential = 10**27 atmospheres. it is of course impossible to attain such physical pressures in pd, where physical strength of materials would limit the pressure to approximately 4000 atmospheres. the figure of 10**27 if the equivalent pressure needed (assuming van der wahls gas) to attain this electrochemical potential. one possible reason that this effective pressure can be attained without serious problems because the electrons from the D are also in the lattice, although they are separated from the deuterons. there is also considerable doubt on the part of several electrochemical experts i have spoken with on this matter. they state that without careful poisoning of the surface of the palladium, it is difficult to achieve such electrochemical potentials. there was no mention of special surface treatment in pons talk, and it is very difficult to avoid considerable contamination of the surface. Dr. Pons explained a control experiment where they used a closed cell to detect tritium (else some tritium would be lost as by exchange with D2O). Tritium was detected, and its concentration increased over time. Also the neutron flux was measured as 10**4 n/s. This is 3X higher than tritium detection was by sampling the electrolyte and determining a beta spectrum. the energies of the betas indicated tritium. the neutrons were detected using a harwell detector as well as by detecting secondary gammas from the surrounding light water bath. gamma spectra indicated a clear peak at 2200 KeV. unfortunately NONE of these measurements weree corrected back to specific source intensities. it is also not clear that the tritrium measurements were not considerably in error due to residual tritium trapped in the palladium. background and was considered statistically significant. However, the reactions to produce tritium and 3He do not explain the amount of heat produced. no detections of He3 were possible since the solubility is so low. the detection of on the order of 10**4 to 10**6 atoms of a non radioactive gas is non trivial. apparently they have done some preliminary mass spectroscopy. anomalously, he4 WAS detected. the D-D fusion which produces He4 + gamma is normally very rare. the gamma has a 15-17 Mev energy which is considerably outside the range shown on the spectrum in pons talk. In this same vein, he pointed out that their experiments indicated that the heat produced was proportional to the volume of the electrode used, not the surface area of the electrode. This indicates that the process is not electrochemical in nature. An energy density of 26W/cc of electrode was calculated. One experiment produced 4MJ of heat in 120 hours. He reiterated that this could not be due to any known physical or chemical process. Since the fusing of deuterium is only part of the overall reaction scheme, other as yet unknown processes produce the rest of the heat which is detected. Dr. Pons believes these unknown processes must be nuclear processes. unfortunately, as was made clear by the cluttered table momentarily shown during the talk, the highest power density was acheived at high current densities, while the best efficiency was attained at low current densities. no mention of temperature coefficients was made. also, the higher efficiencies were only extrapolated assuming recovery of the energy due to recombination of the electrolysed oxygen and deuterium. He also surmised that the deuterons existed in the Pd lattice as a low temperature plasma which is shielded by electrons. Dr. Pons then answered several questions from Faculty members (there were no microphones in the room with the graduate students where I was). The content of his responses are summarized below. This reaction is diffusion controlled, with the diffusion this is unfortunately inconsistent with the pre-charge times quoted. of course this figure is for diffusion in the alpha state, while the deuterons are in the beta phase. pons stated that he expected the diffusivity to be nearly equal for both phases, but that he had not confirmed this. coefficient for deuterons in Pd given as 10^-7 cm^2/s. others have said that this is a very conservative figure and that diffusion at a poisoned surface would likely predominate. The production rate of tritium was found to match that of the neutrons. as mentioned above it is very doubtful that this conclusion can be reached. this would be very significant given the expected cross sections for the two dd fusion reactions at higher temperatures. Although the cross-section of Pd is too small to allow for significant reaction with energetic neutrons, it may react with neutrons back-scattered from the heavy water. No assay of the Pd electrodes has been undertaken to check for activation by-products of Pd. no assay has been completed. pons stated that he has sent several of the electrodes out for testing. the mean free path of 2.5 MeV neutrons in heavy water is about 20cm, which combined with the low density of neutrons should preclude detectable residual activation of the palladium. The ignition/vaporization of the initial experiment was caused by a steep concentration gradient of D+ as the current density was decreased. This gave rise to compression (even greater than *normal*) as the D+ species moved out from the lattice in a radial direction. This "shock" resulted in the vaporization. this is COMPLETELY hypothetical at this point. the formation of a shock in a diffusion situation is also unbelievable. this shock should also be formed when the current is turned on, but that would contravene the observed pre-charge phenomenon. No 2.45Mev neutrons were detected. He speculated that these neutrons may be consumed by reaction with Li: 7Li + n + 2.45MeV ---> 3T + 3He + n 6Li + n ---> 3T +3He + 4.5MeV the pertinent cross section of lithium in the electrolyte for this reaction is MUCH to low for this happen The concentration of the deuterons in the Pd lattice is greater than 0.67 (deuterons/Pd atoms) and is estimated to be 1.0 - 1.2. They are believed to cluster at the octahedral sites in the Pd (Pd has a face centered cubic crystal structure). In looking for products of fusion, 3He was not seen but 4He was. Part of the reason for not seeing 3He is due to the apparatus used (apparently not very airtight) and instruments used. see above comments. even if the apparatus is airtight, this many atoms would be extraordinarily hard to find. Other metals (which were not specified) were tried as electrodes but no heat was detected. Radiation was not monitored. No experiments have been carried out in magnetic fields to determine quadrupole effects. He admitted that spin-spin interactions could have an effect. The reaction is diffusion controlled. In a 0.4 - 0.5mm rod with X=10^-7 cm^2/s, the time required to start the reaction is [ (0.2)^2 / X ]. this does not jibe with the announced pre-charge times. we should also be watched for a precharge time dilation effect (i.e. as the amount of time without confirmation increases, the pre-charge time may also be observed to increase, apparently without bound. this is a p.r. effect). :-) He did not know the effective mass of the electron carriers in the Pd matrix. the snide comment here was that he 'hoped that it is about 200'. this refers to the possibility of heavy electron catalyzed fusion similar to muon catalyzed fusion. this is not possible since the heavy electron effect is due to electrons hauling lattice disturbances along with them when traveling free in a metal lattice. the point of muon catalyzed fusion is that since a muon is so much more massive than an electron, the effective diameter of a muon containing atom is much less than for a normal atom. if the deuterium exists in pd as a plasma, then this effect would not be pertinent. He felt that the addition of hydrostatic pressure to the cell would have a negligible affect on the rate of the reaction. The potential gradient at the D2O Pd interface is on the order of 10^12 V/m. This gradient can not be achieved in gas or vacuum phase conditions. this has implications regarding both the pumping of D into the pd lattice and ionization of the D. They have recently achieved a 1W in 10W out energy ratio. these energy ratios are extrapolated after assuming that a fuel cell anode is used to recombine the evolved deuterium. actual power out/ power in is about 1.11 . considerable amounts of energy are stored as separated heavy water. Essentially no neutrons or tritium are detected until the fusion process begins. He jokingly predicted that 100 years would be needed to bring this technology to commercial use. He admitted that the results were just as puzzling to him as they are to many others. He openly admits that much more work is needed to understand this phenomenon. (He did not seem to resent any questions, and was honest in his responses.) He ended his talk with a WARNING. Please do not DO NOT attempt to repeat this experiments until you have read the journal articles or have consulted with Drs. Pons or Fleischman directly. The initial experiment which vaporized is no joke. Please consult with them or wait for the articles to appear before you begin a possibly dangerous experiment. Please act responsibly in this regard. in particular if you try this, avoid a) large electrodes b) sharp corners c) powdered electrodes d) sharp changes in current e) extremely high current densities f) experiments with D-T or T-T reactions the reason for the last is that these reactions are expected to occur 10**3 or 10**4 times more quickly than D-D reactions. 10**4 W/cm3 is very dangerous. if you are trying these experiments, careful calorimetry and accounting of evolved gases must be done. just running an open cell without good heat flow measurements is worthless. keep neutron and gamma detectors handy and treat the experiment as a low grade radiation source and a serious chemical hazard at the same time. be ready for radiation flashes and chemical or other small scale explosions. no data yet exists indicating that dangerous levels of radiation will be observed, but there is no sense in being a famous dead person. still less in being a kind of famous near dead bald person. pons and fleischman paper will be publised soon in the journal of electroanalytical chemistry. i have reason to believe that the contents of the paper will not answer many questions that his seminars will not. Article 4774 of sci.physics: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!lanl!hc!cs.utexas.edu!ut-emx!ethan From: ethan@ut-emx.UUCP (Ethan Tecumseh Vishniac) Newsgroups: sci.physics Subject: section of preprint from Fleischmann and Pons Keywords: experimental setup Message-ID: <11727@ut-emx.UUCP> Date: 3 Apr 89 21:35:35 GMT Organization: The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas Lines: 87 Posted: Mon Apr 3 16:35:35 1989 A few people have asked for copies of the preprint. I have sent them, but do not really have time to send more. On the other hand there has been a lot of questions regarding details of the experimental setup. I'm going to take a minute to quote liberally from the preprint to pass on such information as it contains. One thing it does not contain is any clear information on control experiments that would obviously eliminate chemical effects (such as using hydrogen instead of deuterium). That's not to say that they didn't do them, but for whatever reason they choose not to mention them. "In the work reported here D+ was compressed galvanostatically into sheet, rod and cube samples of Pd from 0.1 M LiOD in 99.5% D2O + 0.5% H20 solutions. Electrode potentials were measured with respect to a Pd-D reference electrode charged to the alpha-beta phase equilibrium. We report here experiments of several kinds: 1) Calorimetric measurements of heat balances at low current densities (=1.6mA cm^-1) were made using a 2mmx8cm Pd sheet cathode surrounded by a large Pt sheet counter electrode. Measurements were carried out in Dewar dells maintained in large constant temperature water bath (300K), the temperature inside the cell and of the water bath being monitored with Beckman thermometers. The HEavy Water Equivalent ofthe Dewar and contents and the rate of Newton's law of cooling losses were determined by addition of hot D2O and by following the cooling curves. 2) Calorimetric measurements at higher current densities were carried out using 1, 2 and 4 mm diameterx 10 cm long Pd rods surrounded by a Pt wire anode wound on a cage of glass rods. The Dewars were fitted with resistance heaters for the determination of Newton's law of cooling losses; temperatures were measured using calibrated thermistors. Experiments with rods up to 2cm in diameter will be reported elsewhere. Stirring in these experiments (and in those listed under 1) was achieved, where necessary, by gas sparging using electrolytically generated D2. Measurements at the highest current density reported here (512 mA cm^-2) were carried out using rods of 1.25 cm length; the results given in Table 1 have been rescaled to those for rods of 10 cm length. 3) The spectrum of gamma rays emiited from the water bath due to the (n,gamma) reaction 1H+n(2.45MeV) into 2D +gamma(2.5MeV) (vii) was determined using a sodium iodide crystal scintillation detector and a Nuclear Data ND-6 High Energy Spectrum Analyzer. The spectrum was taken above the water immediately surrounding an 0.8x10cm Pd-rod cathode charged to equilibrium; it was corrected for background by subtracting the spectrum over a sink (containing identical shielding materials) 10 m from the water bath. The neutron flux from a cell containing a 0.4x10cm Pd rod electrode was measured using a Harwell Neutron Dose Equivalent Rate Monitor, Type 95/0949-5. The counting efficiency of the Bonner-sphere type instrument for 2.5MeV neutrons was estimated to be ~2.4x10^-4 and was further reduced by a factor ~100 due to the unfavorable configuration (the rod opposite the BF3 filled detector). The background count was determined by making measurements 50m from the laboratory containing the experiments: both locations were in the basement fo a new building which is overlain by 5 floors of concrete. In view of the low counting efficiency, counting was carried out for 50 hours. Measurements on a 0.4x10 cm rod electrode run at 64mA cm^-2 gave a neutron count 3 times above that of the background. 4) The rate of generation/accumulation of tritium was measured using similar cells (test tubes sealed with Parafilm) containing 1 mm diameter x 10 cm Pd rod electrodes. Measurements on the D/T separation factor alone were made using an identical cell containing a 1 mm diameter x 10 cm Pt electrode (this measurement served as a blank as the H/D separation factors on Pd and Pt are known to be closely similar). 1 mL samples of the electrolyte were withdrawn at 2 day intervals, neutralized with potassium hydrogen phthalate and the T-content was determined using Ready Gel liquid scintillation "cocktail" and a Beckman LS 5000 TD counting system. The counting efficiency was determined to be about 45% using standard samples of T-containing solutions. The beta decay scintillation spectrum was determined using the counting system. In these experiments standard additions of 1 mL of the electrolyte were made following sampling. Losses of D2O due to electrolysis in these and all other experiments recorded here were made up using D2O alone. A record of the volume of D2O additions was made for all the experiments. In all of the experiments reported here all connections were fitted Kel-F caps and the caps were sealed to the glass cells using Parafilm. Results for the mass spectroscopy of the evolved gases and full experimental detials for all the measurements will be given elsewhere." -- I'm not afraid of dying Ethan Vishniac, Dept of Astronomy, Univ. of Texas I just don't want to be {charm,ut-sally,ut-emx,noao}!utastro!ethan there when it happens. (arpanet) ethan@astro.AS.UTEXAS.EDU - Woody Allen (bitnet) ethan%astro.as.utexas.edu@CUNYVM.CUNY.EDU These must be my opinions. Who else would bother? Article 671 of sci.research: Path: dasys1!cucard!rocky8!cmcl2!rutgers!gatech!purdue!decwrl!labrea!glacier!jbn From: jbn@glacier.STANFORD.EDU (John B. Nagle) Newsgroups: sci.research Subject: Latest public annoucement on cold fusion Message-ID: <18243@glacier.STANFORD.EDU> Date: 2 Apr 89 00:35:56 GMT Sender: John B. Nagle Organization: Stanford University Lines: 17 Posted: Sat Apr 1 19:35:56 1989 Pons is now claiming that he is now getting 10-12 watts out for each watt going in. He also gave two warnings of things that might make the reaction go must faster, and must be approached with caution: the use of sintered, instead of solid, palladium, which would increase the surface-to-volume ratio considerably and allow much more of the material to particpate in the reaction, and the use of tritium instead of deuterium, which, he claims, might make the reaction go 1000 times faster. This info is from the S.F. Chronicle, in an article by Charles Petit, on page A1 of today's (Saturday) edition. Still no confirmation from another lab. Please, no flames about the bomb potential until we have more data. John Nagle

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