What makes cold fusion reproducible?

In 1989, Dr. Stanley Pons and Dr. Martin Fleischmann, world-renowned in the field of electro-chemistry, announced their discovery: the creation of an enormous amount of heat, a nuclear-power sized heat, but generated from a small tabletop electrolytic cell using a piece of palladium metal in a glass of heavy water, a type of water made from sea-water.

Their claim was so great that, after describing the apparatus in a news conference on March 23, scientists of all stripes around the world rushed to reproduce the experiment.  Unfortunately, they met with few successes.

In the Groks Science Show of May 2009, hosts Charles Lee and Frank Ling interviewed Dr. Michael McKubre, a researcher at SRI International, along with Dr. Irving Dardik of Energetics Technologies, on the then-current status cold fusion science, and Dr. McKubre described how difficult the initial “simple-sounding” experiment was to do, even as an experienced electro-chemist.

In fact, back in 1989, estimates for the initial reproducibility of the Pons/Fleischmann effect ranged between 5-10%.  This means that about 90-95% of the scientists who attempted to re-create the Pons/Fleischmann experiment did not succeed.  Nothing happened.  No heat.  No particles.  Nothing.

It was this lack of reproducibility that contributed to the now unfounded belief many scientists hold, still to this day, that Drs. Pons and Fleischmann were mistaken in their measurements, and in the worst case, that their results were fraudulent.

But, the few percent who were able to successfully re-create the experiment, and witness the nuclear fusion-sized energy-effect in their little glass beakers, were hooked, for they knew what this discovery meant.

With a virtually limitless fuel of deuterium in the oceans of Earth to power an ultra-clean nuclear-sized energy source, for the entire planet, for tens of millions of years, and created in a small table-top device in your room, this technology would radically change the entire world.  Civilization would finally move off of the chemical burning of hydrocarbons for the first time in history and all the associated problems that face our planet because of this oil-fueled civilization can be solved.

And so over the past 22 years, it is these few researchers who have continued to investigate the cold fusion effect, technically named low-energy nuclear reactions. And their ranks have grown, albeit slowly.  Worldwide, there are dozens of labs conducting this research and their results, ignored and unpublished by the established scientific societies and agencies in the US, have grown as well.

But here at the end of 2010, cold fusion still has no theory to describe or predict the many effects.  So what do scientists know?  Here’s a few notions that are experimentally verified:

1. There is excess heat generated above and beyond a mere chemical reaction and on the order of a nuclear fusion reaction.

2. Particles such as Helium-3, helium-4 and tritium, which are normally associated with hot fusion, are detected, though in significantly smaller quantities.

3. The transmutation of elements is found to occur on the surface of the metal in what is called the nuclear active environment.

4. It is a many-bodied physics, not the one-to-one interaction that models hot fusion.

But perhaps the most exciting development in cold fusion research is that, at least for SRI and Energetics, the reproducibility rate has climbed to 73%! Meaning, when they set up the cells, and attempt to induce the cold fusion effect, they can make it happen 73% of the time.

So what’s happened?  The last two decades of research point to two fundamental criteria.

First, for the reaction to occur, hydrogen isotopes (deuterium) must be loaded into the metal to at least 90%. This means, for instance, the palladium metal must be super-stuffed with deuterium atoms in an almost one-to-one ratio with the palladium atoms, causing the isotopes to crowd up tight together.

Secondly, these isotopes must then be induced to “move”.  Dr. Irving Dardik’s Superwave stimulation, a fractal-type, nested wave, pattern-oscillation of electrical current, drives the deuterium atoms to move in particular patterns and this has been key to improving their reproducibility rate. “Directed in the proper pattern as input energy”, Superwaves act on the deuterium in a cohesive way.

Also, it must be acknowledged that the improved quality of the metal since 1989, needed to withstand the loading of deuterium and the flux of Superwaves, has been crucial to successfully implementing the experiment.  The small piece of metal in which the reaction takes place must be designed and manufactured on the nanoscale and as nanotechnology continues to develop, materials science has been able to mange ever greater control over the design of metals.

Early experiments using any old chunky palladium could not be successful.  Only the few random pieces of metal that happened to have a few spots with the proper conditions of a nuclear active environment were successful in re-creating the effect.

In that same interview conducted in 2009, Dr. Dardik boldly estimates that a reproducibility rate of 100% could be achieved within one year, although he admitted that a two to -three year time frame was more likely.

A year later, Energetics Technologies had moved into a new lab in the University of Missouri Business Incubator Park, and we look forward to their announcements.

Currently, researchers are operating under the hypotheses that loading a metal with deuterium and producing flux to move the atoms at high-rates will achieve a 100% success rate of reproducibility, and when that happens, a new technology will be ready to massage the planet, and humanity will be given a second chance at survival.

The stakes are so high. 

In the words of Dr. Michael McKubre,

I can’t think of anything more important for me to work on. If you have any talent, any ability, any ideas in this particular research area then I think you have a moral obligation to do it.