Category Archives: Peak Oil

The Peak Oil Crisis: The Cold Fusion Conference

The original article The Peak Oil Crisis: The Cold Fusion Conference by Tom Whipple of Falls Church News-Press is posted here.

In mid-April the 19th International Conference on Cold Fusion (ICCF-19) took place in Padua, Italy and was attended by some 470 scientists, cold fusion bloggers, entrepreneurs, and the merely interested. The first of these conferences was held back in 1990 in the wake of the University of Utah announcement that two of its chemists had discovered a new way to release energy from the atom. The 1990 conference, however, was resoundingly ridiculed by the American Physical Association and was said to be nothing but a gathering for crackpots, pseudo-scientists, and fraudsters. However, over the decades, the conferees continued to gather in cities around the world, with some 100-300 usually in attendance. Many of those who came to the conferences were scientists who had been able to reproduce the “anomalous heat” that the University of Utah researchers had observed prior to their announcement in 1989. Most of the presentations were way down in the scientific weeds and were comprehensible only to those with considerable knowledge of particle physics, so the conferences drew little attention.

In the last couple of years, however, the tide has turned. Although Cold Fusion is still anathema to many in the U.S. and more importantly to the U.S. Department of Energy, scientists in several countries around the world are starting to see that the technology works, that it could be at least a partial solution to many of mankind’s problems, and are starting to talk about developments in the field to their local press. Most, however, continue to be unaware of recent progress in developing this new source of energy or are too wedded to their prejudices to even consider new evidence.

This year the most important development in cold fusion, unless overtaken by a competitive technology, is the acceptance test of the Rossi/Industrial heat, 1 megawatt, cold fusion reactor, which currently is underway at customer factory in the US. The engineer and entrepreneur, Andrea Rossi, who developed the first working commercial application of a cold fusion reactor, did not attend the ICCF-19 conference. However, his CEO Tom Darden of North Carolina based Cherokee Investment Partners and its subsidiary that is developing the cold fusion reactors, Industrial Heat, attended for the first time.

While many were hoping that Darden would give a progress report on Industrial Heat’s acceptance test of its first fusion reactor, they were disappointed. Darden talked only in generalities as to how he became involved with cold fusion, his dedication to the technology as a way of solving the carbon emissions problem, and his interest in financing similar projects. Two or three journalists who attended the conference however, reported being told by a “credible” source, possibly Darden, that the 400-day, 24/7, acceptance test of the one megawatt reactor is going well after several months. Rossi, who is spending full time monitoring the acceptance test, has been saying lately that the reactor has been running in the “self-sustained” mode a good piece of the time which means that it does not require any outside energy to stimulate the heat-producing reaction.

As has been the case for 25 years, mainstream media coverage of the conference was scarce to non-existent. In addition to his formal address to the conference, Darden who seems to be one of the more knowledgeable people around concerning what it going on in the field, gave a lengthy interview to a blogger. In the interview, Darden revealed that he was funding other cold fusion projects, but did not give any details.

During the interview Darden said primarily that he wants to use this technology to stop global warming and not just to make money from a new source of energy; that he invested millions of his own money in Rossi’s technology only after many tests and careful due diligence; and that he is convinced that Rossi’s or a similar technology will have major impact on the world. He notes that a cheap source of clean energy, which is exactly what cold fusion promises to be, is what mankind needs at this juncture.

Another star of the conference this year was the Russian physicist Parkhomov, who successfully reproduced Rossi’s cold fusion reaction earlier this year and has been sharing the details of his experiments with interested parties all over the world. This has made him a folk hero among those who are hard at work attempting to create still more replications of the reaction.

As could be expected many of the presentations were highly technical, and ranged from new ways of making the cold fusion reaction more reliable to aeronautical applications and even mutating radioactive waste into harmless substances. The Russians, with their ongoing Chernobyl problem, are particularly interest in this aspect of the science.

This conference was notable for it may be the last one to be ignored by the mainstream media. Should the Rossi/Industrial Heat year-long trial of a working commercial reactor be successfully completed by the time the next conference comes around, public and government perception of cold fusion could well have changed markedly. A working commercial scale reactor, which is open for public inspection, will be very difficult for skeptics to deny or ignore.

Next year’s conference will be held in Japan with a subsidiary conference in China. India was also a bidder for the honor. After 25 years, cold fusion looks like it is on a roll.

Read the original article The Peak Oil Crisis: The Cold Fusion Conference by Tom Whipple of Falls Church News-Press posted here.

The Peak Oil Crisis: The Mother of All Black Swans

Title graphic: M. King Hubbert’s graph of the fossil fuel age and it’s successor nuclear power in geologic time.

This is a re-post of an article written by Tom Whipple of the Falls Church News Press.
The original article is here.


Even Saudi Arabia’s oil minister is starting to talk about the advent of a “black swan.” These are defined as completely unexpected developments which cause lots of unexpected change. I believe we are going to be seeing a major black swan event in the not too distant future.

It should be clear to everyone that the earth’s climate is becoming so laden with carbon emissions that civilization as we know it on this planet is unlikely to make it through the next few centuries. Fortunately, however, the combustion of carbon-based fuels will be slowly on its way down as most of the oil that is left is becoming too costly to extract, and in the case of coal, is killing too many people from unhealthy air. Even the Chinese seem to have gotten the message and are cutting back on coal burning as fast as they can without collapsing their economy and getting the government overthrown. However, running out of cheap oil, killing ourselves off from dirty air, or devastating climate change induced weather events are not black swans as these developments are already well anticipated. What is desperately needed is a way for the world to stop burning carbon as quickly as possible without creating economic turmoil. There just may be an answer.

Coming down the road are a pair of technologies that will produce nearly unlimited amounts of cheap, pollution-free energy, and have the potential to change life-as-we-know-it.

I am talking about the twin technologies of cold fusion and hydrinos, each of which, when widely deployed, will constitute a revolution in the history of mankind fully equivalent to the discovery of fire, the wheel, the agricultural revolution, or the industrial revolution. Both of these technologies are based on turning the hydrogen found in water into virtually unlimited amounts of energy at very low cost and without any harmful pollution. Recent developments suggest that either or both of these technologies could become available for commercial applications in the next few years. In recent years, new technologies such as cell phones have spread across the globe in a few decades.

So where are these technologies and when can we expect to hear and read about them in the mainstream media, especially if they are getting close to becoming commercial products? The answer to this is simple. Both these technologies are based on science that is beyond that generally accepted by scientific community, especially those who have never looked into the results of the experiments. While those few scientists who have tested and are familiar with the details of these technologies tell us that they are for real, the bulk are waiting for irrefutable proof that they actually produce large amounts of cheap energy before they are willing to accept that our knowledge of nature may not be as complete as we like to think and that some scientific theories may be wrong.

The hydrino theory holds that there exists in nature a stable, compact form of hydrogen which does not absorb or emit light, making it very hard to detect. Under the proper conditions, normal hydrogen atoms such as those found in water can be transformed into hydrinos accompanied by a massive release of energy. This theory is the brainchild of one man, Randall Mills of BlackLight Power in New Jersey, who has been working on the development of the theory and a practical way to release energy for nearly 30 years. The reason the theory has received little attention is that it appears to violate fundamental principles of atomic science which would have to be rethought if it fact there is such a thing as a hydrino.

Last summer Mills reported in a fascinating video on his website, blacklightpower.com, that he has recently made significant breakthroughs in developing the technology. Last month he reported that all of the subsystems of his prototype “SunCell” now are working and that the first prototype of a commercial device is now being integrated. He also says that a business relationship for distribution of commercial products is being established. If the prototype devices work as advertised and can be tested by independent laboratories, the arguments over the existence of a hydrino should end fairly quickly unless some other explanation can be found. If the subsystems work as claimed, I would be surprised if we did not see the first prototype in operation before the end of the year.

The second of our black swan technologies is our old friend “cold fusion,” which now goes by several other names, largely to assuage the feelings of those scientists who claim there can be no such thing as cold fusion. There now is no question that the nuclear reactions are for real and that commercial quantities of heat can be produced under proper conditions by heating hydrogen in the presence of nickel and other elements. As far as we know, the Italian entrepreneur Andrea Rossi still seems to be the furthest ahead in the race to build and market commercial-scale devices although numerous people around the world are producing heat from laboratory scale devices.

Unlike Mill’s hydrino device, cold fusion is far more difficult to control and many experiments are producing so much heat that they melt down their test apparatuses. Only Rossi, who is now working from a US company, Industrial Heat, down in North Carolina, says he has developed the techniques to keep a commercially viable heat generating device under control. For several months now he has had a commercial sized 1-megawatt prototype device, which has been installed in a factory at an unrevealed location in the U.S., undergoing a year’s acceptance test. If this test is successful, and we won’t know until early next year, Industrial Heat will at some point likely begin publicizing and marketing commercial cold fusion devices.

If either of these endeavors meets their developers’ expectations, we should be seeing the biggest black swan in centuries land in our midst fairly soon.

New E-Cat Report Positive, 1400C+ and Isotopic Changes in Ni+Li

New E-Cat Report Download Here

Observation of abundant heat production from a reactor device
and of isotopic changes in the fuel

This test was performed by the same group as the previous test with the following names on the paper:

Giuseppe Levi
Bologna University, Bologna, Italy
Evelyn Foschi
Bologna, Italy
Bo Höistad, Roland Pettersson and Lars Tegnér
Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
Hanno Essén
Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden

This 760 hour test is the longest running example of controllable LENR/Cold Fusion and at an excess of 5825MJ it is also the most powerful.

The Temperature peaked at above 1400C, hot enough to be extremely practical as an energy source.  The measured COP was between 3.2 and 3.6 with the authors hinting they could have pushed the device further but were cautious due to the huge energy gains when they initially turned it up a bit.

The fuel was analyzed before and after the test and showed significant changes in the elemental profile including shifts to Ni62 and depletion of other Ni isotopes as well as a shift in Lithium isotopes.

Listen to Andrea Rossi discuss the results with John Maguire here.