In June 2012, I went to interview Dr. Melvin Miles on his career investigating cold fusion electrolytic cells as both a Professor and a Navy researcher, now retired.
I didn’t know I’d get two interviews that day.
We met in the office of Dr. Iraj Parchamazad, Chairman of the Chemistry Department at the University of LaVerne, in LaVerne, California, who is also studying low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR) using an unusual environment on the nano-scale: zeolites.
I was prepared for Dr. Miles‘ interview, and made two movies about him; one, discussing the early years of cold fusion and Why Cold Fusion Was Rejected and two, Dr. Miles talking about how his cell is put together and showing his calorimeter that measures highly-accurate temperature changes in How to Make a Calorimeter, both of which you can view here.
But, I wasn’t prepared for the discussion on how zeolite crystals host tiny particles of palladium in their unusual geometry, and make anomalous heat when exposed to deuterium gas.
Well, after over five hours of discussion, I knew a whole lot more about this new style of room-temperature, gas-loaded, zero input energy heat production from an expert in that particular application.
In this video, you too can see how LENR research is conducted in one U.S. university lab, complete with all the financial struggles that have characterized the study of new energy for two decades, and learn how scientists are finding new ways to generate useful heat energy that reveals yet another path to ultra-clean, energy-dense, and abundant power for the world.
In Potential Advantages and Impacts of LENR Generators of Thermal and Electrical Power and Energy published in May/June 2012 Infinite Energy #103 [.pdf version], Professor David J. Nagel describes the impact that clean drinking water produced by cold fusion, also called low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR) would have on human health:
Production of Clean Water
“Humans need water on a frequent basis to sustain life. Roughly one billion people on earth do not have good drinking water now. The possibility of being able to produce drinkable water from dirty rivers and the seas by using the heat from LENR would be momentous.” –David J. Nagel
Cleaning dirty water and de-salinization of ocean water on small and large scales both become possible with cold fusion technology, and hot, clean water produced from small, portable generators could affect the health of a billion people world-wide.
Nagel is a Professor at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and a founder of NuCat, a company that holds workshops and seminars on cold fusion for scientists, researchers, and potential investors. [visit] Making the case to businesses that they can profit with affordable LENR-based hot-water boilers, he goes on to say:
“Favorable pricing of LENR generators for such countries could conceivably contribute significantly to world peace. The situation might be similar to the current sales of medicines for AIDS to poor countries at reduced prices. Rich countries will not soon give poor countries a large fraction of their wealth. However, they could provide some of the energy needed for development and local wealth production at discounted prices, while still making money from manufacturing LENR energy generators. This is an historic opportunity. –David J. Nagel
But the real winners are those suffering with conditions caused by dirty water:
Global Medical Impacts The availability of water free of pathogens and parasites to a very large number of people should lead to dramatic reductions of the incidence of many diseases. The savings of lives, human suffering and costs of medical assistance, where it is available, might greatly outweigh the costs of buying and using LENR generators. The better availability of electricity would improve both the diagnostic and therapeutic sides of clinical medicine.” –David J. Nagel
That may be a policy of enlightened self-interest on the part of “rich countries”, but just who needs clean water? Just about everybody.
In the U.S., there are people whose water is combustible because of pollutants from nearby hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for gas. Suzy Williamswrote a song about it in response to Gasland which documents this atrocity.
But what kind of difference can clean water make in the lives of poor people around the world? The hardship that lack of access to clean water brings to one in seven around the globe forfeits a tremendous human capital. According to Water.org [visit],
Women around the world spend 200 million hours every day collecting water and every 20 seconds a child dies from a water-born pathogen.
Cold fusion commercial products for domestic use now in research and development phase are small and portable. A 10 kilowatt steam-heat generator has a core the size of a tin of mints, requiring only a few grams of nickel powder and pico-grams of hydrogen gas to operate. These relatively simple devices can be made affordably for communities in need.
The benefits of clean water from cold fusion was highlighted in another article published in the December 1996/January 1997 Infinite Energy magazine issue #11 [visit], this one written by researcher and author Jed Rothwell. In it, he commented on Everyday Killers, a series of articles in the New York Times about the myriad of problems created by lack of access to clean water and mosquito nets. [download .pdf]
Here are some excerpts from that article showing cold fusion researchers have been thinking about the revolutionary benefits of this newly emerging technology for a long time:
It is good to be reminded why cold fusion is so important. The New York Times recently published a two-part series on third world health problems titled “Everyday Killers,” by Nicholas D. Kristof:
Malaria Makes a Comeback. And is More Deadly Than Ever, January 8, 1997
For Third World, Water Is Still Deadly Drink, January 9, 1997
… Almost all of water borne diseases could be eliminated by boiling the water used for cooking and drinking and by cooking foods more thoroughly. Better hygiene would also eliminate them, but boiling will work. Unfortunately for a family of four in India, the kerosene required to boil the water costs about $4 per month. Many poor families earn less than $20 per month, so this is much more than they can afford.
Cold fusion might ameliorate this problem by giving people cheap energy to boil drinking water and cook food. If a high-temperature cold fusion device could be made as cheaply as a kerosene burner or electric stove, it could save millions of lives every year. Boiling water is a workaround. It is not as effective as proper sanitation. As the article explains, “billions of people in the third world don’t have access even to a decent pit latrine.” In other words, in many parts of the world shovels would do more good than either kerosene or cold fusion. Latrines or septic systems would be a great benefit on land with good drainage and percolation. Concrete lined cesspools can be effective. The next step — to water pipes, sewers, and waste treatment plants — costs far more than poor communities can afford.
The Times listed some statistics for the most common water borne diseases in the 1997 article:
Deaths per Year
Intestinal Helminth Infection
Sources: World Health Organization. American Medical Association, and the Encyclopedia of Medicine.
Whether you use kerosene or cold fusion, boiling drinking water is a stopgap solution to the problem. It depends on the initiative of individuals. A mother might conscientiously boil drinking water, but when she is not around the children may not bother. It is far better and more efficient to secure a source of pure water for the whole neighborhood or village, and to drain off sewage.
On the other hand, the ad-hoc one-at-a-time method of boiling water is good because it allows individuals to solve the problem on their own, immediately, without depending on community action. It fits in well with the “micro-loan” model third world assistance programs, which were pioneered by organizations like Oxfam.
Ignorance Is Often the Real Problem
Ignorance causes much of the suffering. Children have no idea that filth causes disease. The Times article opens with a scene familiar to anyone who has traveled in the third world, although it is unthinkable to Americans and Europeans:
Children like the Bhagwani boys scamper about barefoot on the
narrow muddy paths that wind through the labyrinth of a slum here,
squatting and relieving themselves as the need arises, as casual about
the filth as the bedraggled rats that nose about in the raw sewage
trickling beside the paths.
Adults realize that this causes disease, but they are not convinced of the fact enough to discipline their children, or to dig proper latrines. In some urban slums there is not enough room, but that is not a problem in rural villages, yet in many of them water-born diseases are endemic. Many crowded Japanese towns and villages today have no running water or sewer systems. (At least, they still do not in rural Yamaguchi, where I often spend my summer vacation.) Houses are equipped with concrete cesspools only, which were emptied by hand until the 1950s. Yet there has been no water-born disease in these villages in modern times.
Cold Fusion No Panacea, but Better than Alternatives
…Technology does not help people automatically, just by existing.
..The biggest advantage would be that individual people will decide for themselves to buy the reactor. People will not have to wait for corrupt governments or power companies to serve their needs. They will be able to solve their own problems, just as they do today with micro-loans. “ –Jed Rothwell excerpts from Everyday Killers
Recently, I met with veteran cold fusion researcher Dr. Melvin Miles [visit] and his colleague Dr. Iraj Parchamazad, Chairman of the Chemistry Department at University of LaVerne in LaVerne, California [visit].
An electrochemist who worked for the Navy, as well as a professor of chemistry at University of LaVerne, the now “retired” Dr. Miles continues to work on palladium-deuterium (Pd-D) electrolytic cells as he has for twenty-three years. He was the first to correlate excess heat with the production of helium, confirming the nuclear origin of the reaction. He is an expert in measuring heat, called calorimetry, as well as measuring the tiny amounts of helium produced by these cells.
I wanted to ask Dr. Miles about what he’s learned about calorimetry over the past two decades and I was lucky enough to interview Dr. Parchamazad about his latest work using palladium nano-particles baked into zeolites and exposed to deuterium gas D2O, with which he’s had a 10 out of 10 success rate in generating excess heat.
And a slide from Miles’ presentation at the American Chemical Society Meeting in 2007, a calculation showing that if we took all the deuterium atoms in the ocean and fused them into helium, creating energy according to Albert Einstein’s E= mc2, the fuel would burn 13 billion years: