Lewan Rossi interview of May, 2016

This recent Lewan interview and comments on it led me to look back at an older one:

Rossi makes offer on Swedish factory building – plus more updates

Last week, Andrea Rossi made a visit to Sweden, and apart from meeting with the team of professors in Uppsala, with me and other persons, he made a trip from Stockholm to the south of Sweden to have look at a 10,000 square meter factory building for sale. The day after, assisted by his Northern Europe partner and licensee Hydrofusion, Rossi made an offer on the building in the order of USD 3 to 5 million. Negotiations are now ongoing.

This was before the IH Answer in Rossi v. Darden revealed that Rossi claimed to IH, in 2012, that he had created a fake test for Hydro Fusion to get out of his agreement with them. One wonders how Hydro Fusion reacted when they found out, assuming they did. Be that as it may, it seems clear that Lewan reports what Rossi tells him as fact, without verification. To be sure, perhaps he did verify, but … it seems unlikely. Then Lewan does not follow up. What happened to this deal? When an actual offer is made, normally there is a deposit put up. Or was this a real offer, or just an idea?

There are many “updates” reported in this interview. What else was there and how does it all look now, with far more having become public?

Even buying a factory building is no proof that production will start. Critics, accusing Rossi for being a fraudster, will assume that it could be a way to attract investors, but I honestly wouldn’t expect a fraudster to make use of such expensive schemes. Especially not since it would be quite fine just getting away with 11.5M without further trouble.

This is a classic argument on Planet Rossi. “I wouldn’t expect.” “Fraudster” is not well defined. Lewan’s expectation is an ungrounded fantasy. If a fraudster is someone who induces people to do what he wants by misleading them, there is plenty of evidence that Rossi has done that (including that Hydro Fusion affair, regarding which Lewan has direct knowledge of).

IH obviously didn’t expect Rossi to sue them, he’d have to be crazy. Yes. He would. However, maybe he gained something, he is now claiming that his goal from the beginning was to get the License back, though that does not match his actual behavior. However, once we accept the idea that someone might be literally insane, it is not necessary that anything make sense. What can be seen here is that Lewan is creating conclusions out of nothing.

I would take this as a strong indication that the modular Quark X, supposedly big as a pen, producing heat, light and direct electricity at variable proportions at a total power of about 100W, based on the E-Cat LENR technology with hydrogen, lithium, aluminium and nickel in the fuel, is real. Rossi, however, said that there’s still R&D to be done to get the Quark X ready for production. He also said that the ‘X’ had no other meaning than being a substitute for a final name.

And some other mystery ingredient, apparently, the most closely-guarded secret. Quark-X is now allegedly a 20 watt device, and direct electricity isn’t being claimed any more, if I’m correct. This is 14 months later. Sure, Rossi had an excuse, but … why does everything depend on Rossi alone? Doesn’t he have partners? Ah, well, questions, questions. What’s here.

After my meeting with Rossi (first time for me since September 2012), I have a few other updates.

Claiming that everything he said could be proven with documents (or that he otherwise would be lying),

Rossi lies, that’s not in question. That doesn’t show that any given statement is a lie, but what do we know about what is claimed here?

Rossi told me regarding the one-year 1MW test that:

All the instruments for measurements were installed, under observation of IH and Rossi, by the ERV (Expert Responsible for Validation) Fabio Penon, who had been communicating also with Darden, receiving technical suggestions from him on this matter. All communications with the ERV were made with both Darden and Rossi in copy.

Later email communications between Penon and Rossi (but before this interview) were not cc’d to Darden and were destroyed by Rossi, apparently. Rossi apparently removed monitoring equipment installed by IH, but what he has said here may be more or less correct. Rossi was, in fact, in full control of the “test.” IH never agreed that this was the Guaranteed Performance Test, and it was clear that Rossi knew that the opportunity for the GPT had expired, though IH was willing to negotiate for further payments.

The flow meter was mounted according to all standard requirements, for example at the lowest point in the system.

As soon as the “test” was completed, Rossi removed the pipes so this claim could not be verified.

The MW plant was placed on blocks, 33 cm above the ground, to make sure that leaking water or any hidden connections would become visible.

That would be the Plant. However, the full system was mostly hidden in the “customer area,” and there are various ways that what happened in that area could seriously affect measurements.

The two IH representatives present at the test were Barry West and Fulvio Fabiani (who worked for Rossi from January 2012 until August 2013, when the MW plant was delivered to IH in North Carolina, after which he was paid by IH as an expert who would make the technology transition from Rossi to IH easier). West and Fabiani reported to JT Vaughn every day on the phone.

I’m not sure about “every day.” However, calling them “representatives” is a bit deceptive. Both were tasked with assisting Rossi. Fabiani was an old friend of Rossi’s wife, apparently, and when things broke down between IH and Rossi, Fabiani, he claimed, felt trapped in the middle. In the end, he did not turn over the raw data that did, in fact, belong to IH, thus possibly protecting Rossi. We know that he destroyed that data, by his admission, and he destroyed his emails.

Rossi always pointed to the “two men” IH had in Doral. They were utterly ineffective at monitoring what was going on, because West, in particular, was not allowed to challenge Rossi on anything. Fabiani apparently threatened to harm West if he did anything to harm the “test,” though it’s not clear that he was serious. Fabiani was definitely a Rossi man, not IH.

Three interim reports, about every three months, with basically the same results as in the final report, were provided by the ERV during the test.

They were. Glossed over is the fact that Penon only visited the test maybe once every three months, and depended entirely, as far as we know, on Rossi for data. Many of these details, though, remain unclear because of the destruction of data and emails.

During summer 2015, IH offered Rossi to back out from the test and cancel it, with a significant sum of money as compensation. Rossi’s counter offer was to give back the already paid 11.5M and cancel the license agreement, but IH didn’t accept.

If this actually happened, it is odd that IH would later accept the settlement, turning the License over for no compensation at all.

At this point, making this claim, Rossi was suing IH — and other defendants — for a lot of money. Later, Rossi says, now, in the new interview, that his whole purpose was to get the licence back. IH had put about $20 million into the affair, so $11.5 million would be short. But how about $10 million plus some residual rights? Not requiring all the things that Rossi didn’t want, only providing a conditional payment to IH if Rossi hit the market with real product?

This alleged offer, now, looks like much better than IH actually got. Because this would likely have been used as a basis for improving the IH settlement, I doubt that it ever happened like it’s being said here. Rossi does that, reframes events according to his own narrative and the impression he desires to create.

The unidentified customer (‘JM Products’) using the thermal energy from the MW plant, had its equipment at the official address—7861, 46th Street, Doral, Fl. The total surface of the premises was 1,000 square meters, of which the MW plant used 400 and the customer 600.

We now know that there was no customer other than Rossi wearing different hats, when he even bothered to change hats. This story, like all the others told before the truth came out, strongly implies an independent customer, not Rossi himself. His story changed once he was under penalty of perjury, with massive evidence that he’d been lying. Some of his testimony, still, pushed that legal edge.

The equipment of the customer measured 20 x 3 x 3 meters, and the process was running 24/7.
The thermal energy was transfered to the customer with heat exchangers and the heat that was not consumed was vented out as hot air through the roof.

The “heat exchanger” mentioned here, with the function described, would not be the heat exchanger Rossi later claimed. This report directly contradicts the later story. The heat was, in the later story, blown out the front windows of the mezzanine, not through the roof.

The “equipment” was a collection of tubes in which other, smaller tubes were placed, to be heated. As this was actually operated, with only small amounts of “product” being involved — maybe a few grams! — this did not require anything remotely close to a megawatt. Rossi was here maintaining the fiction of a “customer” which was only Rossi, with full control by Rossi.

The water heated by the MW plant was circulating in a closed loop, and since the return temperature was varying, due to different load in the process of the customer, Rossi insisted that the energy corresponding to heating the inflowing cooled water (at about 60˚C) to boiling temperature would not be taken into account for calculating the thermal power produced by the MW plant.

This was Rossi controlling the ERV report. An engineering evaluation would aim for accuracy, and if some margin is to be added to be “conservative,” this would be applied later, not just to one measure, or mathematically to all, based on estimated error. Rossi’s insistence caused the performance data to be, possibly, partially hidden. By the way, the metering pumps had a maximum operating temperature of 50˚C, another example of the equipment operating outside the rated range.

The ERV accepted. (This was conservative, decreasing the calculated thermal power. The main part of the calculated thermal power, however, derives from the water being evaporated when boiling).
He also insisted that an arbitrary chosen 10 percent should be subtracted in the power calculation, with no other reason than to be conservative. The ERV accepted.

To be sure, at this point, IH was following a policy of not confronting or criticizing anything that Rossi did.

IH never had access to the customer’s area. At the end of the test, an expert hired by IH, insisted that it was important to know where the water came from and where it was used. The ERV explained that this had no importance.

Demonstrating that the ERV was, to use the technical term, a blithering idiot. Sure, if everything works perfectly, it should be possible to measure generated power with the “customer loop” being hidden.

However, there are possible error and fraud modes that would operate in the “customer area.”

Supposedly, the “customer,” JMP, was to independently measure the delivered power. Instead, Johnson, the President of JMP — and Rossi’s lawyer and President of Leonardo Corporation — was given draft reports by Rossi to send to IH for delivered power. Rossi later claimed, when it became apparent that his earlier descriptions were inadequate, that he had built a heat exchanger — an additional one — to dissipate the megawatt. The operating conditions of that heat exchanger, i.e., air flow rate and air temperature rise, would have been an additional measure of power, it would have been of high interest. But if it existed, it was hidden. Why?

Rossi’s description of what was said by the “expert” may not be accurate. This is the set of questions.

Nothing there about what Rossi says. We don’t know that, at this point, Rossi had seen those questions. We may suspect that Penon gave the document to Rossi, but the emails were destroyed, and Penon was unavailable to be served, apparently hiding in the Dominican Republic to avoid being sued.

In fact, Penon blew off the expert’s questions, refusing to answer them. This is not how an independent expert would behave. Questions were asked verbally, and the expert (Murray) wasn’t satisfied and put the questions in writing. No answers.

The average flow of water was 36 cubic meters per day.

Data collection from a test like this would properly be as measured (actual flow meter readings), not some “average.” This is all part of what was weird about the Penon report. That’s covered in many other places.

At the end of the test, the ERV dismounted all the instruments by himself, in the presence of Rossi and IH, packed them and brought everything to DHL for transportation to the instrument manufacturers who would recalibrate the instruments and certify that they were not manipulated.

This is the kind of claim that sounds reasonable until it is examined closely. When a lawyer saw this claim (not an IH lawyer), he immediately said “spoliation.” That is, evidence was removed. To be sure, no evidence appeared in the case about the results of those recalibrations.

“Manipulation” — or error — need not be of the instrument itself, but how the instrument is installed or how it is read.

One of the mysteries of the Penon report is the rock-solid 0.0 bar pressure reported. Assuming that Penon actually meant “0.0 barg,” this is astonishing, given supposedly superheated output. With superheated output, it is very difficult to maintain temperature control (unlike saturated steam, that will be rock-solid at a given pressure.) Murray raised certain issues with Penon, but there are more. In any case, imagine that the pressure gauge was screwed into a blind hole. No pressure. Nothing wrong with the gauge. Then just a little steam could raise the pressure enough to explain the temperature readings; setting up such a system to operate at 0.0 bar, precisely, would be extremely difficult, and why would one go to the trouble?

After the test, IH wanted to remove the MW plant from the premises in Florida, but Rossi would not accept until the remaining $89M were paid according to the license agreement.

The Plant clearly belonged to IH, which, by the Term Sheet, had the right to remove it. Rossi’s action was not legally sustainable, under normal conditions.

Rossi’s and IH’s attorneys then agreed that both parties should lock the plant with their own padlocks (as opposed to the claim by Dewey Weaver—a person apparently connected to IH, but yet not clear in what way—that ‘IH decided to padlock the 1MW container after observing and documenting many disappointing actions and facts’).

Dewey was an investor in IH, involved from the beginning of the affair, and a contractor to them as well. His statement is not contradicted by what is said about attorneys on both sides. (Both can be true.) This is Lewan arguing with Weaver, but, of course, Lewan disallowed comment on this post.

It’s obvious why IH would want to padlock the container, it would be to prevent spoliation. It seems they did not contemplate that Rossi would remove all the piping. There is a story that Johnson asked IH about starting up the plant again (possibly an attempt to support the “customer” story), IH indicated that could be done, and then Johnson withdrew the request. After all, the piping had been removed (and, as well, if the later story is true, the heat exchanger as well. Both were necessary for operation of a megawatt plant!)

Rossi claimed that the Term Sheet prevented IH from having access to the “customer area,” which wasn’t true. That provision was in a draft, but was removed before that agreement was signed. Nevertheless, IH did not attempt to enter the “customer area.”

I should also add that I have been in contact with people with insight into the MW report, that hopefully will get public this summer as part of the lawsuit, and they told me that based on the contents, the only way for IH to claim a COP about 1 (that no heat was produced—COP, Coefficient of Performance, is Output Energy/Input Energy) would be to accuse Penon of having produced a fake report in collaboration with Rossi. Nothing in the report itself seems to give any opportunity for large mistakes, invalidating the claim of a high COP (as opposed to claims by people having talked about the report with persons connected to IH).

Jed Rothwell somehow obtained a copy of a preliminary report. Lewan is here reporting a complex judgment with no attribution covering the expertise of those judging, this was vague rumor. If the data in the report is taken as accurate — which appears unlikely from internal evidence — sure. High COP. Lewan is completely unspecific. Rothwell claims he got the preliminary data from someone who got it from Rossi. When the Murray questions to Penon came out, Rothwell said that he had nothing more to add (Rothwell had seen spreadsheet data, but Murray describes it.)

The Penon report was filed in the court documents. There is also data from Fabiani. It all looks odd, but I’m not going into more detail here.

As for hints on the ERV Penon being incompetent, based partly on the HotCat report from August 2012, I would like to point out:

Fabio Penon has a degree in Nuclear Engineering, from Bologna University, with rating 100 of 100 and honors.

Goes to show. (Nuclear engineering does not necessarily prepare one for low-temperature steam power measurement and possible artifacts.)

He worked for several years in the nuclear industry with thermo mechanics.
When the nuclear industry was put on hold in Italy, he turned to work as expert on product certification, collaborating with entities such as Bureau Veritas, Vertiquality and Det Norske Veritas.

The HotCat report from August 2012, signed by Penon, containing a few notable errors, was not written by Penon. Penon assisted at a test on August 7, 2012, repeating an experiment made on July 16, 2012. The report was written on the July test, and Penon was only confirming that similar results were obtained on the August test. Penon told me this in an interview in September, 2012. You could of course accuse Penon of not having studied the original report sufficiently before signing it, but the errors were not a result of Penon’s work.

Sure. That signature, however, demonstrates a level of professional incompetence. He signed a report without verifying it. I’d be happier if he simply made some mistakes! Here, Mats is finding excuses, and that’s what one does if one is attempting to create or support some picture, some overall impression.

Penon’s behavior as shown by the lawsuit wasn’t … inspiring.

Two further remarks regarding earlier E-Cat tests:

[not copied]

I have contacted several experts to get a third party evaluation of the Lugano test report and the contesting papers by Thomas Clarke and Bob Higgins. Until I receive these evaluations I only note that the original result is contested, but that no conclusive result is agreed upon. The isotopic shifts remain unexplained, unless you assume fraud.

That is probably necessary, though the real point is that the samples were not obtain neutrally.

Mats never came up with the third party evaluations. That could have been an actual service.

There is more, confirming that Clarke and Higgens were correct, at least in round outlines. IH made the Lugano reactors, and claims that they were never able to confirm the Lugano results, in spite of extensive efforts. (It is possible that they had some original results later considered artifact, and the report of an accidental control experiment, mentioned in the recent interview, may have been a Lugano-type reactor with similar optical calorimetry. That kind of work must be fully calibrated (i.e., with control experiments at full input power, the basic and most obvious Lugano error.)

As to the isotopic shifts, Rossi, during this visit that Lewan is reporting on, provided another sample of ash to Bo Hoistad. This showed the same isotopic shifts. It was apparently from the Doral plant, though that’s not clear. The “same isotopic shifts” could indicate that this was from the same sample. If it was actually from Doral, Doral had operated for a year, whereas Lugano only operated for a month. One would expect more dramatic shifts from a year of operation, if this is an effect from whatever reaction is generating power.

§

Now, all this makes me conclude that the E-Cat is most probably valid and that the 1MW test was indeed successful.

It appears that the phase of the Moon led Lewan to conclude this. There was a major investor who devoted $20 million and years of effort to confirm Rossi technology. The investor failed to do so, and walked away with a complete loss. In the face of that, the vagueness Lewan asserts pales to insignificance.

What remains to be explained is why IH in that case didn’t pay Rossi the final $89M and continued to partner with him to develop and market such a disruptive, world changing technology.

Indeed. Something is wrong with this picture. To discover it, Lewan would need to set aside his own complex emotional reactions, and actually become familiar with fact.

After looking at it for some time, I tend to be skeptic about the conspiracy hypothesis, involving large financial and political interests being threatened by such a technology, even though I find it remarkable that IH has involved APCO Worldwide and Jones Day.

Sifferkoll really goes off the deep end.

APCO and Jones Day are not at all mysterious if one looks at who these people are. Darden is a professional investment manager, handling billions of dollars in investments. It’s surprising that they would hire professionals? Why?

I then ask myself if it’s really possible that it all comes down to money. That IH/Cherokee, as has been suggested, has a track record of putting up companies based on emerging technologies or remediation projects, collecting public and private funding (or also this link), making the funds disappear and then closing down the companies with reasonable explanations for unsuccessful development of the technology or of the project.

That is a cherry=picked story of what Cherokee does, often asserted by Sifferkoll and repeated among Rossi supporters as if it were established fact.

Cherokee takes on risky projects, setting up LLCs for each project. They put about $25 million of Cherokee funds in them. Each project is independent. Each project then solicits its own investors, generally from “qualified investors,” people who can take on major risk — and also people who may need tax deductions, another factor.

Money does not “disappear.” Rather, a few projects fail. When they fail, which isn’t often, — i.e., most projects make money, quite a lot — a project may be shut down. In some cases, liabilities may exceed assets, though that is not common, and then a project might go through bankruptcy. Like any corporation. Some of these projects obtain loans and governmental funding. As with any such loan or grant to a corporation (or individual!), there can be losses. All this has been exaggerated in the lists of alleged Cherokee misbehaviors. I’ve looked at each one I’ve come across, reading the sources, documenting fact. It’s classic mudslinging.

If Cherokee were ripping off investors, there would be investors complaining. If officers were absconding with funds, there would be prosecutions (and one of the stories does involve such a prosecution. An LLC hired someone who apparently wasn’t trustworthy. It happens. None of this has anything to do with Industrial Heat. Industrial Heat investors are not complaining about Darden. This was all FUD to support a Rossi narrative of these people being crooks, but the case documents simply don’t show that.

But Mats hasn’t read the case documents, he’d rather just see what is written on blogs and make knee-jerk judgments.

Admittedly, this could be a defendable strategy in some cases where results could be obtained. Still, if the E-Cat is really working as claimed, why wouldn’t they then take the chance to build it into a prospering money machine? Taking care of the magic hen that lays golden eggs instead of roasting it after having collected the first egg, as some would put it. I cannot figure it out.

The difficulty is arising because assumptions are being made that are contradictory. IH never collected any eggs, not even the first! Rossi claimed “unjust enrichment,” but they never sold Rossi technology. He claims that they “collected $50 million” based on the technology, but that was empty claim (sometimes supported on Planet Rossi by misquoting what Woodford wrote when they learned about the problems.) Woodford did not invest in Rossi technology, but in the general IH LENR activity, this is completely clear.

IH shows, at this point, a dead loss, IHHI still has funds, apparently, but much of the asset value carried may be the Rossi License, which will be completely written off.

In Mercato veritas. Will anyone else invest after seeing what happened to IH?

Clearly, such an endeavour would require investing a lot of money and work, spending large parts, if not all of the funding IH collected while boasting about the successful MW test, and also taking a market risk that it might not play out as expected.

Mats is telling the Rossi story, regurgitated. IH did not “collect funding while boasting about the successful MW test.” They didn’t boast about the MW test. They occasionally expressed some optimism, mixed with some concerns, but major new investment didn’t exist until Woodford invested, and that was committed before the alleged 1 MW test began. Woodford did visit, and Rossi said this and that about it, and some believe Rossi, including, apparently, Mats. There was no new major fundraising after the original $20 million stock offering in 2013, as far as I’ve been able to find.

But wouldn’t it be worth it? Becoming remembered for introducing a technology that could change and literally save the planet, from the climate crisis and from fossil fuel pollution? Rather than being forever remembered as those who only saw the money, and didn’t want to get involved in the technology project? I just cannot understand.

There are many internal IH communications, communications with investors, and the like, in the case documents. They obviously did not “see only the money.” Rossi made that up, and Rossi seems to have believed that they only cared about money (hence he imagined that they’d be happy that he chose them over Hydro Fusion, even though that affair reeked).

These people had concluded that LENR was probably real, and that it was possible Rossi had real devices, and they poured money and hope into that for years, tolerating Rossi’s “difficult behavior,” because if they didn’t, they knew what Rossi would do, and then then would not be nearly as certain as they did, later, come to be.

It’s actually not difficult to understand, if Mats would just take off the blinders and start looking at what he already knows, if he lets go of his attachments.

He doesn’t need to take it from me. He could see all of this for himself.

But, with this interview, he cut himself off from learning what was actually going on:

§

Finally—I will continue having the comments on this blog closed. The main reason is that few new facts have been presented, whereas unmanageable amounts of opinions have been posted.

That’s a characteristic of community discussions in general. However, Mats had no imagination. The problem on his blog was a linear comment model with no hierarchy. It created completely unmanageable discussions. Further, Lewan didn’t have time for this (and had no patience for those who did). What he could have done was to engage someone to manage the site for him. To develop useful crowd-sourced information requires structure and study and work. To let him know when there was something worth looking at.

What Lewan did isolated him from people who actually understood the case, perhaps only a few of those commenting. Lewan loosely followed E-Cat World, but not LENR Forum (far more neutral, with some regular participants being good writers and scientifically knowledgeable, still a huge mess).

If one doesn’t have the time to follow full discussions with all the trolls and nut cases, and if the topic is important, one needs help. Choose that help well!

I would like to apologise if I have hinted at Thomas Clarke’s having an agenda with his impressive number of comments. I want to assume that Clarke is perfectly honest in the significant work he has laid down on analysing the Lugano report and on commenting what, according to him, is probable or not. But I would also like to note that producing for some periods up to 34 posts per day hints at a position which I’m not sure if it should be called balanced. This, combined with obvious spin from a few people, apparently having an agenda in criticising some individuals, adds to my decision to keep the comments closed.

Thus suppressing genuine discussion of what is posted on the blog. This idea that there is something wrong with “34 posts per day” is a common one among shallow thinkers. That isn’t the Clarke norm, but that was a very hot discussion in a very hot time. I would have invited Clarke to write posts, not merely to comment, because his engagement in the routine cycles of insults common on blogs would be a waste. I would suggest to Clarke that he leave defending himself to others. That’s an old internet principle: don’t defend yourself, defend each other.

Mats doesn’t know enough about the case and case record to have informed opinions, he is entirely dependent on what Rossi tells him and what he’s seen on E-Cat world. He claims “there is no proof,” but he has not actually examined the evidence, it’s all vague. He only reports what Rossi Says, plus some shallow and uninformed conclusions of his own.

To do more would be too much work, my guess.

However, please share the post if you think t’s relevant, and feel free to email me if you have facts that you think I should be aware of.

I have posted a comment on his new post, still awaiting moderation approval, and, since he requested this, I’ll email him a link to this page. Right now, something is broken on this site (coldfusioncommunity.net) and comments are not allowed on “pages” even though that was working at one time, and it’s all mysterious, but … any responses from him would be posted unless he requests otherwise.

Mats Lewan interview

This is a study of a post on Mats Lewan’s blog (linked under the date below), copied for purpose of analysis and critique. It included some good photos of Dr. Rossi, eliminated here because they are not necessary for this purpose. My comments are indented and italicized.

Corrections of errors and comment on arguments is welcome. Comment here is generally open; incivility in comment may result in comments being hidden or moved to an organizing page at the sole discretion of CFC administration (until a more open process is practical and available). If a comment is hidden, the content may be requested by the author. We do not generally delete content, at least not in the short-term.

Here’s The Settlement—Getting The License Back Was Rossi’s Top Priority

July 18, 2017 Uncategorized

Mats has not categorized his pages. It’s not an active blog, so it doesn’t matter.

In the settlement between Rossi and his US licensee IH, Rossi got the license back together with all E-Cat equipment and materials, while none of the parties will have to pay damages to the other.

Yes, if this is the settlement as agreed, and if there are not other agreements. IH is, in signing this, totally relinquishing all claims to Rossi’s IP. A fly in the ointment would be Ampenergo. AEG was a party to the IH/Rossi agreement, and modifications of that agreement without Ampenergo signature are not valid, and this new agreement modifies (basically revokes) that original agreement. Ampenergo is mentioned; Ampenergo rights (and responsibilities, if any) are not altered by this settlement agreement.

It was Ampenergo’s refusal to sign the Second Amendment that created a major legal problem for Rossi in claiming the $89 million payment was due. The provisions allowing this in the original agreement had, in fact, expired, so the Rossi claim depended on estoppel, the idea that IH had behaved as if bound by the Guaranteed Performance Test provisions; but Rossi was unable to find any clear evidence for this, in spite of extensive effort. The evidence that was found only showed that in a few internal communications, IH referred to a test in process according to an agreement, but the reference was vague and could have referred to the Term Sheet agreement and Penon’s involvement.

Getting the license back was his top priority all the time, Rossi explains in this interview.

Yes, he claims that. Mats does not seriously question it — or anything Rossi says. If that was his “top priority,” we went about it very strangely, creating an enormously complicated lawsuit at high expense. It has been claimed on the blogs that Rossi offered to settle with IH for a return of the License fee (probably $10 million); that is implausible and without evideniary support as far as anything I’ve been able to find. If that had been offered, it would be unlikely for IH to settle as they did with no refund of any kind. However, there are many strange features of this case’s history, so that isn’t proof of anything. Indeed, proof is elusive, but there is a great deal of evidence that Mats is ignoring.

Update. Frank Acland has pointed to a 2016 interview with Rossi. This is probably the source. This claim, unverified in part, has been repeated as if clear fact, on which various conclusions are then based.

During summer 2015, IH offered Rossi to back out from the test and cancel it, with a significant sum of money as compensation. Rossi’s counter offer was to give back the already paid 11.5M and cancel the license agreement, but IH didn’t accept.

From many examples in the lawsuit, we know that Rossi’s reports of conversations are subject to extensive distortion, even if there may be a core of reality. IH did offer money to Rossi, not as “compensation for cancelling a test,” but apparently assuring Rossi that money was not the problem, the problem was them not having been successful in making devices that would pass fully-independent testing, which was absolutely necessary for them. So this first part is framing, how a fact is presented. The second part is not verified. This has later been called a “public offer.” Such a public offer would have been a violation of the License Agreement. Rather, it was a claim made to Lewan, which became public because Lewan published it. A sincere public (or private) settlement offer would normally remain on the table (possibly modified somewhat due to legal expenses). Rossi, in fact, did not request return of the License in the lawsuit, and there was certainly no public offer. Had there been, and assuming that this is what Rossi actually wanted, it would have changed the entire complexion of the case. It might have settled early, saving both sides substantial expense, and netting IH more than $10 million for other LENR research.

But Rossi hated “other LENR research.” More money for it would be the last thing he wanted.

[Here’s the document defining the terms of the settlement (un-disclosed source)].

This copy is unsigned and undated. There is a copy that appeared on LENR-forum, without attribution, that shows Rossi’s signature and a date, July 14, 2017. The draft agreement does not require confidentiality as to itself, nor in general. What remains protected is the secret fuel formula and anything disclosed in Discovery and already covered by a Protective Order. Everything else is, on the fact, permitted.

“To us, the most important thing was to regain complete ownership of the IP and of all the rights that were conceded through the license. At this point, it had become very clear that a continued collaboration had become impossible because of the choices IH made and because of other reasons.

Collaboration actually broke down by July, 2015, when Rossi violated the Term Sheet, refusing entry to the Doral plant to the IH engineer, Murray. Rossi gives reasons in this interview that don’t make sense from a business perspective, but only from within his well-known paranoia.

The development, the finalization, and the distribution of the technology—any agreement regarding this would have been impossible,” Rossi told me during an interview via Skype on July 15.

The impossibility was entirely related to Rossi’s absolute intransigence about his ways of doing things. He made it impossible for IH to actually verify what was happening in Doral, made the “test” take total priority over showing IH how to make devices that would pass independent testing (small scale testing, the normal testing one would expect), and this made it impossible for IH to raise the $89 million payment. Even though the time for that had expired, IH indicated in communications that came out in the trial that they were willing to pay Rossi if they could make those working devices. One of their theories is that Rossi never disclosed what was needed, and that is quite consistent with his comments to Mats. He didn’t trust them, but the mistrust goes back further than he discloses.

IH had obtained a commitment for another $150 million from Woodford, so the plentiful Rossi claims that they objected because they couldn’t pay were simply more smokescreen. They could have paid if Rossi had shown what was needed.

The settlement was drafted on July 5, 2017, on the fourth day of the trial regarding a lawsuit that Rossi filed in Florida, mainly against his US based licensee Industrial Heat, IH, early in April 2016, for not having paid the final amount of USD 89M according to the license agreement, after one year of operation of a 1MW heat plant based on Rossi’s E-Cat technology, apparently successful according to a supposedly independent report made by nuclear engineer Fabio Penon.

We do not know when the settlement was drafted. What I saw in court was that the parties requested that the judge dismiss the suit with prejudice, with all parties bearing their own legal costs, with any details to be worked out with private agreement. The indications I had at the time was that this agreement did not yet exist. It is possible that some outline existed. The settlement agreement provides for a joint filing, which hasn’t happened yet.

The documents as they stood did not require that $89 million payment. Rossi used shaky legal theories to advance this. He would not have prevailed, my opinion, based on what I saw. I did not expect, however, that IH would relinquish all rights unless compensated; and a reason for doing that only occurred to me a few hours after seeing the agreement. Tax purposes. They had come to believe that the IP was worthless, but there would be a residual value due to a small probability of future value. If there is a formal release as binding legal settlement, they could then totally expense all the costs, being able to distribute this as a loss to their investors, which is part of how these risky LLCs operate. They create losses that are then fully deductible from income for their investors. Otherwise the investments might sit there for years, not deductible. So a more accurate description than “worthless” would be “not worth as much as the tax deductions.”

(IH would still have gathered a valuable intangible, “experience.” I was told that IH does not intend to abandon LENR, but a sane long-term approach would be to gather experience, learning to recognize what has true commercial potential and what does not. They would retrench and maintain “watchful waiting,” including readiness to act quickly when needed.)

The defense, on the other hand, accused Rossi of having produced false results in conspiracy with Penon and others.

According to whom? Mats is relying on Rossi’s account. This is a story about the lawsuit that doesn’t fairly present it. What IH did was to call the Doral test into question; this was actually a secondary defense, the primary one being that Doral simply was not a Guaranteed Performance Test, but rather a sale of power to a supposedly independent customer with an immediate and desperate need for steam, willing to pay for it, and the site serving as a demonstration for investors. No mention of “test.” Then, tacked onto this was measurement by Penon, but this was to be in addition to independent measurement by the “customer.” The customer was, we now now, entirely Rossi, and the invoice requests from the customer, signed by Johnson, were drafted by Rossi. There was no independent customer, this was all fraudulent inducement, and that all became totally clear in the evidence, and was emphasized in the opening statement. At trial, Rossi was going to lose, totally, on the $89 million claim.

The claims of fakery in the test results were secondary, not primary. It only became relevant if the GPT arguments were to fail. The underlying equity was that without the ability to reproduce results, IH could not possibly raise the $89 million; the Rossi counterargument in the case was that the Agreement did not require reproducibility. That is literally true and utterly misleading. Perhaps Mats should actually read some documents!

Eventually, however, none of these accusations could be confirmed by proof, which I will comment on below.

Mats is here stating as bald fact what is obviously a conclusion, his conclusion. He refers to “proof,” which is legally naive. The standard of factual judgment in a civil case, like this, is not “proof.” Proof is rare in the world. The standard is the “preponderance of evidence.” He has not actually specified the allegations but is already referring to them as if established. This is the kind of vagueness on which Rossi has long thrived. It is distressing to see in someone who was, at one time, a serious journalist.

Mats does not cover the evidence for fraudulent representation, he simply declares it out of existence. This is appalling.

“There were two clauses in the license agreement that were extremely dangerous to us—the right of first choice [if you plan to make any agreement outside of the licensee’s territory, you first have to offer the licensee the possibility to make an agreement for that new territory] and the rights also to all subsequent inventions. These clauses would have made any further development very complex.

Not really. This is simply Rossi paranoia and smokescreen. The term is “right of first refusal.” Before acting to make an extraterritorial agreement, Rossi would have had to offer the agreement on the same terms to IH. IH could then accept or refuse. This could not harm Rossi’s legitimate interests. However, Rossi often used alleged difficulties to excuse his refusals. He told IH that the presence of an independent engineering company experts at the Ferrara Validation Test in 2013 would “make problems” for him. What problems? One possibility is obvious. They might see through his friend Penon’s incompetence or collusion with Rossi. None of this is proof, but it all builds a coherent picture of how Rossi has operated.

“The perspective for the continued trial was that we could win or we could lose. You always have to examine these possibilities and investigate the consequences. A victory for us risked becoming a pyrrhic victory. Even though we were convinced of having a very strong case, eventually the jury would decide. And the problem was that in the case of a victory, the jury would probably say that it would be fair for Leonardo Corporation [Rossi’s company] to receive the claimed funds, but it would also be fair for IH to keep the license. For us to also get the license back was beyond the horizon.

Many people had pointed this out. Rossi did not actually ask for license cancellation in the Complaint nor in succeeding documents. If this was his primary goal, that’s rather odd. A license cancellation would probably be accompanied by a refund. It has been claimed that Rossi offered such a refund, but I’ve seen no confirmation of this. [see above, there is evidence, a Rossi comment to Mats Lewan in May, 2016, with no independent confirmation]. Refund for cancellation of license would have been an obvious settlement. It would have involved IH eating an additional $10 million or so of expenses, but surely better than a total loss of the entire $20 million investment. 

“So my lawyers asked me before the trial which my priorities were if the trial would lead to any transactions—those indispensable and those negotiable. My answer was that the indispensable condition was to get the license back because I didn’t want to collaborate with IH anymore. As for the financial aspects, I told them which my expectations were, from a lower level to a higher one.”

“My lawyers” is a bit vague. The one who apparently negotiated the settlement was Lukacs. Notice that the primary goal is emotional: “I didn’t want.” I think he’s telling the simple truth here, this is what he thought. Why didn’t he want to collaborate? Where did that come from? It’s found below. It was crazy paranoia, the classic Rossi story. The paranoia led to the major breakdown, by July, 2015.

Were you aware of the danger of the two clauses in the license agreement when you signed it?

Unless Rossi was later lying, always possible, he didn’t consult attorneys before accepting the License Agreement, nor after. There was no danger in the clause he mentioned. It was more or less standard. There was no occasion where this caused him any actual loss, it was all fear. The second clause is misrepresented by Rossi, somewhat. It is not “all subsequent inventions,” it is only inventions that would compete with the original E-cat technology. Again, the reason for that clause is obvious. Inventor has product A, sells it to investors, then comes out with B, which destroys the market for A. Not great for investors, eh? Rossi consistently has shown, since before 2011, that he does not understand the needs of investors.

“Yes, I had understood the risk but I was convinced that I was collaborating with a partner that I would never separate from. Let’s say that I got married without taking into account the difficulties if there would be a divorce.”

Sure. However, most agreements for $100 million involve a bit more sophistication. The settlement agreement looks like something drafted by a lawyer, and includes contingencies dealing with various failures to agree. Marriages where significant property is involved often include separate property agreements that protect the parties. There is no way that IH was going to suggest these protections to cover Rossi (and they were not going to include them to protect themselves, and this was all seen as necessary to deal successfully with Rossi, given Rossi’s character. Bring up such a possibility, for example some attempt to verify his measurements, very possible he’d explode and walk out the door. He’d done it many times.)

What would have happened with your new reactor version, the E-Cat QX (formerly known as Quark X), if you hadn’t got the license back?

This was all obvious, I wrote about this many times, with Rossi supporters screaming that it was biased. Now Rossi acknowledges it.

“It would have been very complicated because it’s an E-Cat—the theory base is the same and the patent protection is basically the same, even though revolutionary inventions have been added, but the license agreement expressed very clearly that all inventions, also subsequent and future ones, would become IH’s property. Together with the clause of first choice it would have become very complex. So it was absolutely necessary to eliminate the license.“

Very complex = “absolutely necessary to eliminate.” Not actually very complex! Quite simple. If Rossi improves the invention, they get that technology. Rossi makes more money, certainly not less. Yes, he’d be sharing profits. At this point, status quo, IH had paid only $10 million for that full benefit. Of course Rossi didn’t like that, but he had many opportunities to be paid much, much more. He turned away from them. They would have required that he actually fulfill the intention and letter of the Agreement, and he didn’t trust them, that is the long-term Rossi position. Mistrust. Mats knows Rossi well enough to recognize this.

To obtain another $89 million, all he’d have had to do was to get the signature of his friends at Ampenergo on the Second Amendment. There was no time limit on that. Then he’d have needed to get all parties to agree to the start of a test date. If they unreasonably dragged their feet, that would have made for a simple specific-performance demand, and lawsuit if necessary, a much less complex lawsuit, with far more basis (and easily resolved by going ahead with a test with reasonable precautions).

Alternatively, it appears that IH offered to waive the GPT requirement. All Rossi had to do was teach them how to make devices that actually passed careful, independent testing. Rossi either could not do that (one possibility) or did not want to do that (the other major possibility, consistent with the story he now tells Lewan.) Annesser, Rossi’s early and very pugnacious attorney, pointed out another possibility: they were incompetent boobs who could not follow instructions. However, if they were truly incompetent, find them competent advisors. Pay them if you have to. Guide them through the process step by step. And an absolute no-no: if an error or possible error is found in your measurement methods, don’t storm out claiming the Russians Did It. Fix the problem, nail it.

According to the settlement, the defendants shall return or destroy all documentation, return all reactor vessels including the 1MW E-Cat plant, also promising not to disclose the E-Cat fuel formula to anyone. How will you be able to control this?

It’s in the Settlement Agreement. Rossi’s answer is also fairly obvious.

“With the information that I have provided you can make a replication, and if we see other companies producing something analogous, even partly analogous, this means that our technology has been transferred. And we will protect our IP.”

Yes, this is more or less correct. However, something like a secret formula, which is the only secret aspect, could be found by someone else doing what Rossi claimed to do, running a thousand tests. That’s not very many, actually. There are techniques for running millions of tests, simultaneously. It’s only money. So why hasn’t this already been done? Well it’s being done, but not focusing on “Rossi technology,” for the most part. Why not? Because nobody with the resources believes that Rossi technology is real, for all the obvious reasons, very obvious, if one studies the case documents (which is a significant project by itself, I will be working to make it easier; I’ve already done this to a limited degree. It, itself, is a significant project, and it is not funded beyond my expenses — which are crowd-funded).

An early theory, which I considered possible, was that Rossi deliberately created the appearance of being a con artist, in order to allow easy dismisssal of his work by others who might otherwise seriously investigate with the goal of competing with him. )Mats supports this idea in An Impossible Invention. It was this argument that led me to conclude that the appearances did not prove that Rossi was what he appeared to be. So … what if this is still happening? Mats is ignoring obvious appearances, as if they don’t exist, he is not confronting them and asking difficult questions. Why not?

That, again, is obvious. Ask Rossi difficult questions, there goes your access! (An alternate explanation is that Lewan is simply not smart. I doubt this. He could understand if he wanted to.)

Talking about replication. In his deposition, Tom Darden [President of IH and of Cherokee Investment Partners] claimed that with the information you provided, they ‘were never able to build devices that successfully produced energy.’ What is your comment to that?

That is a decent question. The problem here is that Lewan doesn’t go deeper. Darden said this in a deposition (though I don’t have the exact quote in mind and Lewan does not bother with sourcing like this.) That means under oath, under penalty of perjury. Rossi responds with misdirection.

“During the discovery phase, emails from Darden were provided and made public, where Darden himself confirmed to have replicated our process successfully.

Well, by being vague, Rossi maintains appearances. Darden was enthusiastic and had some early results that appeared positive. We have seen this many times with LENR! Some of that disappears when examined more closely, the “unable to build” comment is about a fuller, later judgment. In Rossi case arguments, positions that changed over time were often collapsed, as if a person would have one, fixed view, from beginning to end. This would not have impressed a jury, it’s easy to understand.

We also have testimonials from persons who have assisted at such replications. Woodford [Investment Management] assisted at one of those replications, after which it invested USD 50M in Industrial Heat, even before the [one-year 1MW] test started in Doral [Miami], at a time when IH obviously had nothing but our IP in its portfolio.”

This is radically misleading. Woodford did not “assist” at an “IH replication,” as far as we know. Rossi is vague, but may be referring to the Doral test as a “Rossi replication.” This was totally managed by Rossi, featuring a faux Director of Engineering for the “customer” who was literally a puppet for Rossi, saying what Rossi told him to say. Maybe Rossi is talking about some other test, but, if so, I haven’t seen evidence for it in the documents. Woodford committed to invest in 2014, up to $200 million. IH had suggested that this go into IPH, the Dutch BV, where it would be exposed to Rossi claims. Woodford insisted that it go instead into a new UK limited liability company, IHHI, which became the owner of IH, but not obligated to pay IH debts; it could voluntarily do so. The first tranche, $50 million, cleared in May, 2015, and this money went into other technologies, not Rossi, and that totally pissed him off, though this was simply Woodford doing what they wanted to do with their money.

Woodford did not invest in Rossi technology, but that IH had a hedge to cover the possibility of Rossi success was likely attractive. They were not impressed by the Doral plant, apparently. I wouldn’t have been, beyond, OMG, what a complicated piece of machinery for a fraud! Maybe it’s real! I would not be impressed by steam pipe going through a wall into an inaccessible “customer area,” with the only sign of a megawatt being the claims of Rossi (or the “customer engineer” who was clueless), from instrumental readings. It’s hard to hide a megawatt! That is the only reason I could think of for a megawatt test. It’s a terrible way to gather reliability data, the way it was done.

“We also have testimonials.” That appears to be a claim without evidence, very common. It’s meaningless without specifics. Lewan does not ask for specifics. Notice that underneath Rossi’s claim is an implied claim that Darden and Vaughn and others perjured themselves. If there was a successful “replication” — which is itself misleading, because replicating results is not yet independent confirmation if the test methods are flawed — Woodford would know it and would then be a possible witness in a perjury prosecution. This is all misleading, implausible, but Mats swallows it whole, apparently. (It isn’t obvious in the early parts of the interview, but shows up in what Lewan states as fact without attribution to Rossi.)

In his deposition, Darden also claimed that you had said that JM Products [the ‘customer’ that used the thermal power produced by the E-Cat plant in Doral—more comments on that below] was a subsidiary of Johnson Matthey, that Johnson Matthey would have operated the plant of JM Products, and that after [a] brief period of positive operation Johnson Matthey would have announced that they were the customer. What’s your comment?

Lewan attributes this to a Darden claim, instead of what the IH attorneys did, referring to the primary evidence, a series of Rossi emails, as well as evidence from James Bass, and the OFAC declaration of Johnson. That sets up Rossi’s basic answer, an implication that Darden was lying and that there was “no evidence.” But there was plenty of evidence, conclusive evidence, overwhelmingly so. The representation that the “customer” would come out like that is in a Rossi email that is quite clear on the topic, quite enough to convince a jury in a civil case, and possibly enough to convince a jury in a perjury prosecution. By not understanding this, Lewan simply provides a soapbox for Rossi.

“Mr. Darden hasn’t been able to prove what he said under oath. Basically, he has sworn on things of which he has no evidence. I have never said or written that Johnson Matthey was the owner of JM Products, while in contrast I always said and wrote that Johnson Matthey was the producer of materials that I had use for in my work with JM.”

First of all, the history of the draft of the Term Sheet shows that IH believed that the customer was Johnson Matthey. The customer was allegedly a chemical company with a need for steam. IH obviously got the name of Johnson Matthey from somewhere! Here, Rossi has created a cover story that might explain it, i.e., he told them of his plans and IH misunderstood. However, this is utterly inconsistent with Rossi’s subsequent behavior. Instead of telling IH that it was a mistake, he told them that he “wasn’t supposed to mention their name.” In many documents, he referred to the customer as a distinct and independent entity, not merely himself planning to work with JM materials. When IH suggested they might visit JM in the U.K., Rossi demanded that they not do this, it would spook them. If he was merely buying materials from them, what would be the problem? And this goes on and on. This isn’t just one piece of evidence and it isn’t just Darden’s word against Rossi’s. Rather, the reality is that there is no contrary evidence in the evidentiary record to what Darden claimed, and there is massive support. Rossi obviously led IH to believe that the “real customer” — that is, the hidden owner of JM Chemical Products — look at the name! — was Johnson Matthey. He was lying from start to finish, and he is still lying, to Mats.

More accurately, it’s likely that Rossi believes his lies, that is part of how he is able to convince people, his obvious sincerity. Technically, then, they are not “lies,” but intention to mislead, which is the core (not “false statements”) is obvious. It exists somewhere in Rossi’s psyche, he is creating his own “reality,” and transmitting it to others, but the patterns are consistent. Mats is refusing to recognize what really, by now, should be obvious to him. Rossi is, at best, insane. Nice wig, though. Nice smile. Cordial. And very persistent, hard-working, etc.

When one creates a misunderstanding, the best construction I can find, and there is a clear opportunity to clear it up, and, instead, one papers it over with appearances, it becomes clear that the “misunderstanding” was intentional. (Rossi said there was nothing wrong with dealing with a new company, which was true, except … he had claimed originally that this was an existing company, ready to go, and hurry, they need to go soon, don’t miss the opportunity, when, in fact, and this is simply not in doubt, there was no independent customer, no existing process requiring steam, and all the funding and control was purely Rossi. IH obviously decided, even though it was starting to look shaky, to give Rossi the chance, and that fell apart by July, 2015, when Rossi blatantly violated the Term Sheet by excluding the IH engineer, and even if we imagine that Doral was a GPT, this was a gross violation of the orginal GPT intention. I think Rossi is telling the truth that he had decided he didn’t want to work with IH any more. Consider what he claimed to have done with Hydro Fusion. This could have been, quite simply, a more elaborate version of the same behavior. 

Some of Rossi’s supporters think all this is irrelevant, that what really matters is “did the Plant work?” The problem is that how Rossi set it all up makes conclusions about actual power generation depend entirely on trusting Rossi. The “independent ERV” was not quite so independent, and the actual management of operation and data collection was … Rossi. The test conditions were entirely controlled by Rossi, and then we find out about, say, other pumps in the system. One of the ways to fool a steam measurement system as existed in Doral would be through such hidden elements. And … the instruments were removed immediately at the end of the test, taken by Penon. All with excuses, of course, but an attorney saw that and immediately said, to me, “spoliation” (Not an IH attorney, and this was before IH claimed spoliation. This was before more examples of spoliation of the evidence appeared, the removal of the steam piping not allowing verification of the slope of that return pipe and the exact installation of the flow meter, which itself had multiple problems.)

The pressure gauge, critical to understanding the state of the alleged steam delivery, was being operated above the specified operating temperature, and the simplest explanation of the rock solid report of 0.0 bar pressure is that the gauge was broken (or simply blocked; removed from the system, it might operate perfectly), and it was removed by Penon. (0.0 bar in the Penon report was a blatant error, and this was generally translated to 0.0 barg, which is, at least possible! but then there are many other problems, all glossed over by Rossi’s facile explanations that don’t hold up under examination. In any given example, there may be an explanation, but this “test” was a mess. Penon was vastly overpaid.

Rossi often made the point that Penon, his friend, was a “nuclear engineer” as if that made a difference. Nuclear engineering is irrelevant to measuring steam, Jed Rothwell has often made the point: one needs an HVAC engineer who actually works with steam. While some nuclear plants use steam, the training of a nuclear engineer would not extensively prepare a person for this work, for there is no clear theory of operation for LENR devices, but measuring steam and generated heat are all well-known and with well-known possible errors, to steam engineers.

Darden also reported an episode when they provided a reactor that you operated successfully, after which they revealed that the reactor was empty, suggesting that there were systematic errors in the measurement method, also describing your violent reaction when they told you this. Can you comment?

This was, again, a good question. It’s a report, I think more than one person has referred to it, and, again, Rossi talks about “proof.” In court, Darden would testify, someone else would testify who may have been a witness, and Rossi would testify. The jury would consider how these match and how they differ. What does Rossi actually say here?

Mats actually makes the statement that Rossi operated the reactor. This is not a clear account matching what I recall. However, maybe. Mats does not attribute sources for his information, generally. He is, in effect, repeating rumors or creating them based on something he read somewhere, which may or many not have been accurate.

“Darden has said lots of things that he has never been able to prove. What he assures doesn’t exist. I always made experiments with reactors charged by me, or by me in collaboration with Darden. Never with reactors provided to me as a closed box, for obvious reasons.”

What obvious reasons? Rossi has diverted from the actual story, and talks about something else. I saw this many times in his pleadings. IH would assert an alleged fact, A. Rossi counsel would “dispute” the fact but then, for evidence, would provide irrelevancies that would all be about how A was to be interpreted, not the fact A itself. This managed to confuse the Judge, actually, which may have been the purpose. It is all clear from the record when one actually studies the pleadings and looks up the cited references. It’s not very visible if one just reads the pleadings themselves. To understand those documents actually takes a lot of work! Unless someone has organized them and analyzed them, making verification easy.

The actual story, at this point from my memory. IH was running tests of reactors, and had apparently created empty reactors. They had written a letter on the outside of the reactor, as I recall the story (eventually, I’ll look all this up). They were getting some strong results, high COP. Then they realized that they had been confused by an upside-down letter and what they thought was a fueled reactor was actually unfueled. Notice that Rossi’s answer completely avoids the actual reported situation, which involved a reactor that was unfueled, so even if Rossi was correct, and all the fueled reactors had been loaded by him (but Darden supposedly had the formula), IH may have made some unfueled versions and got one confused with the fueled ones.

So they called Rossi and demanded that he come to North Carolina immediately. He did, and they showed him the test. They then, together, cut open the unfueled reactor, and it was empty. The story I have in mind has Rossi getting angry, claiming “The Russians stole the fuel!” and storming out.

Was this story pure invention? It seems unlikely, but a jury would have decided, looking at the witnesses in testimony and under cross-examination, and possible corroboration. And, remember, all this was peripheral. The central issue, the contractual requirements, was actually very clear. Much of this would be relevant to the counterclaims, not the primary lawsuit.

What this shows to those interested in Rossi Reality would be how a lack of control experiments can be fatal to experimental studies. Rossi hated control experiments, had expressed his contempt for them in 2011. Lugano was most seriously damaged by the lack of a control experiment (a “dummy reactor”) at full input power, which would have immediately exposed, if it existed, error in temperature measurement. In fact, the IH mislabelling showed a naivete on their part as well. One would label controls either not at all (depending on later opening them up) or with a code unintelligible to the experimenters. Using a letter and knowing what the letter was supposed to mean would damage neutrality; ideally the difference is blind. (This is far, far from what Lugano did. The fueled and dummy experiments were treated differently and known. That’s relatively weak, but not uncommon in initial studies. Lugano was not designed to be conclusive.)

Let’s talk about JM, since how, why, and by whom the company was formed was one of the main topics to raise doubt about your motives with the one-year test. You already explained that you never said that Johnson Matthey was the owner. So who formed the company?

“I always said that the owner of JM was an [Italian] person who knew me since a very long time, and who was in contact with a British company and wanted to participate in the work with my technology.

He is still lying, here, that is, being deceptive. At best, Rossi isn’t at all careful. He “always said” this to whom? There is no sign that what he has said here is what he said to IH in 2014. “Italian” was supplied by Lewan?

Johnson, supporting the JM story, claimed that the owner was a “U.K entity.” Not Italian, and, in fact, the supposed owner (in name only, in fact, Rossi was entirely responsible for JM Products), Rossi may have indeed met again in Johnson’s office, he who became the sole beneficiary of Platinum America Trust, but that wasn’t a U.K. entity, it existed in a file cabinet in Johnson’s Florida office, only. That this was a long-time Rossi friend was concealed from IH, and covered up with the OFAC “U.K. entity” story. In his deposition, Johnson acknowledged that there wasn’t and had never been a “U.K. entity,” giving the excuse that they had planned to create one, but it was too expensive.

But why would they even bother; there is only one reason I can think of: to make it appear that it was Johnson Matthey. Once they had made that representation, and once IH had agreed to the Doral move, there was no longer any need to go to the trouble of creating a U.K. entity.

So I invented this proposal for him to be both a customer, buying the energy produced by the E-Cat plant, and collaborator, verifying the validity of my technology [both the E-Cat technology and the one used by JM Products]. This is what I always declared. And in my depositions, I also provided the name of the owner of JM. I also explained that the owner of JM didn’t achieve any agreement with the British society, and therefore went on by himself together with other partners.”

The depositions were, of course, after the lawsuit had been filed. Rossi did not lie about it then, except in one way: claiming that he had not told IH the customer was Johnson Matthey. He obviously led them (and others, such as James Bass), to believe that, then backed up and mixed up the story while maintaining the impression of an independent customer, still Johnson Matthey. What other partners? Rossi is continuing with his vagueness that is designed to confuse. Johnson presented the “U.K. entity” claim as a present fact, not some future possibility. But this is standard for Rossi: present a possibility as an already-realized fact. Johnson was a rubber-stamp for Rossi.

Rossi did invent the proposal. But look at how this was proposed to IH! The story he now tells is very, very different. Okay, the customer was to “buy the energy.” $1000 per day. Attractive proposal, to be sure, and he pointed out that the Plant only cost $200,000 to build. Amazing profit! Really, read that email. Here, I’m not spending much time looking up stuff, but compare this to what came out and what Rossi is now saying. 

(Rossi also claimed that the test didn’t happen in North Carolina because of IH failures. In that email, we can see that Rossi declined an opportunity to run a test under close IH supervision in North Carolina. He claimed that an independent customer in Florida would be much better!)

How was JMC/JMP to pay that $1000 per day? It’s totally obvious: Rossi paid all operating expenses of JMP. JMP had no independent income, Rossi would have paid the $1000 per day, if IH had ever actually issued the invoices. (they were not confident; I think it was a mistake. they would have invoiced “per your report.”) Rossi developed a story to justify moving payments around on paper: JMP would process materials and Leonardo Corporation, Rossi’s company, would buy them.

Yes, as I recall, the first element of the scheme to appear, though it was not public until disclosure was required in the lawsuit, was the formation of Platinum America Trust. So Rossi planned all this, there was no independent customer: like turtles, it was Rossi All The Way Down. So all of Rossi’s claims about the independent customer, to IH and to his public, over the years, were deceptive.

Pace’s theme in his Opening Statement on Day 3 was “fake [this], fake [that], and fake [the other thing]. Easy story for the jury to remember and to use to mentally file the evidence that would then be presented in the next phase of the trial. While this or that might be shown to have some factual basis, or to be wrong, the overall story was easy to understand and the evidence for deception was massive and overwhelming, and not dependent on Darden Says. That was just support!  (Sworn testimony is evidence.)

Rossi then explained that he had presented his attorney Henry Johnson, who would have the formal position as president for JM Products for administrative reasons, to Darden and JT Vaughn [vice president of IH], making clear that Johnson was his attorney.

Eventually, yes (though I don’t know that Rossi volunteered the information. IH claimed to have been surprised to find the Rossi attorney as the “JM” representative. However, the impression was carefully maintained that the Johnson and JMP were merely representing for public purpose a true owner, who would, Rossi claimed, be willing to reveal true identity after a few months of successful operation. By this time, the proposal stank, but …. IH apparently reasoned that surely an attorney would not participate in a fraud…. 

“I would then have directed JM’s operations from a technology perspective. I also sent an email in June 2014, provided as evidence, in which I informed Mr. Darden that I was going to be the director of JM’s plant.”

The language was there, but in context, did it mean what Rossi is now claiming?

One of the things I intend to do is create a chronological index to the documents. I haven’t checked, but Rossi may have said, I seem to recall, that he would be the director of the “Plant,” and in context, this could have meant the power Plant.

Rossi, in fact, entirely controlled JMP, making all decisions, and paying for everything. JMP did not have its own facility. The original name was JM Chemical Products, but they had trouble finding a rental, landlords being reluctant to rent to a “chemical company.” The response to that was typical of how some lawyers — and Rossi — think. Change the name, problem goes away! However, ultimately, Leonardo Corporation rented the warehouse, then subleased part of it to JMP.

So you invented the technology used by JM?

“Yes, I made all the technology, I invented their production plant, and I made the plant.”

It was all very obviously invented as an excuse. Rossi All The Way Down. Remember all the claims on JONP about an “independent customer”? That customer is now revealed as entirely the invention of Rossi. They were not, as claimed, an independent company with a process they needed steam for. The “independent company” was an idea in Rossi’s head, even though he used the third person for it. In mercato veritas, which to Rossi apparently means, create a dummy customer and create dummy sales, where you pay yourself, and hey, “the market has spoken.”

Can you describe the technology?

“We produced substances with a very high added value. To do this we had to achieve an extremely high pressure inside small reactors that were introduced in larger tubes. The concept was to provoke contractions in certain materials, using heat exchange with the hot steam [from the E-Cat plant] and a pressure of a few bars but concentrating the force from the pressure on a larger surface, a few cm2, on much, much smaller surfaces, increasing the pressure proportionally. And this process consumed heat.“

In mercato veritas. “High value” implies high sale value to arms-length customers. Did he actually sell any products? We don’t think so. Now, “this process consumed heat.” That’s not impossible. However, crucial: how much heat? A process does not “consume” heat, rather, some processes will store it as chemical energy, or possibly phase change. How much chemical? This would be the real question. What we know of the “product” was the raw material: Rossi originally asked for a bid on a kilogram of platinum sponge from Johnson Matthey. That was apparently the only actual contact with JM. The bid was a million dollars. (which is roughly reasonable.) Rossi apparently decided to buy some catalyzers and scavenge a few grams of platinum sponge from them. So we have a few grams of platinum sponge. If this was the most efficient energy storage process known, how much energy could be stored in a few grams? Later, Rossi claimed to buy some graphene. Again, how much energy? Let’s put it this way: these processes could have been run with less than a kilowatt of power. A megawatt was vast overkill.

“Very high value” is actually contradictory to the basic idea here, large amounts of product. Was Rossi producing a fabulous value of product every day? How much energy could a kilogram (a million dollars worth of palladium sponge, the original production material claim) “absorb”? 

How much of the heat from the E-Cat did this process consume?

“On average it consumed between 20 and 40 percent of the heat produced by the E-Cat plant. I had to learn from the experiment how much heat was necessary, because there were not any precedent analogous experiments to get data from.“

Not before and probably not yet. His “customer process” could not make a measureable dent in a megawatt under the conditions at Doral.

This is completely unreasonable, preposterous. This was all examined at length on the blogs. There is no way that this much energy could be stored in product (Rossi’s “consumed” implies violation of the laws of thermodynamics, but translating it to “stored”). It would require massive deliveries and removals of product. Storing that much energy, the product would be very, very dangerous. Etc. A non-dangerous endothermic reaction could have been melting ice, requiring a constant flow of ice deliveries.

So since it didn’t consume all of the heat from the E-Cat plant, you had to get rid of the excess heat in some way?

When this was raised on JONP, Rossi eventually settled on some combination of endothermy and ventilation. He did not mention “heat exchanger.” That was only raised this year, and nobody who had seen the plant suspected a heat exchanger, which would have been quite visible and very noisy. Rossi’s idea was a kludge, almost certainly yet another fantasy. He would have had to create it so it would be hidden, which is not what one would do if this was simply getting rid of the heat. Such a heat exchanger, operating, generating measureable temperature rise in a measurable amount of air, at least as to round estimates, would have been a great confirmation of Plant energy generation. And this is standard engineering. Why hide it?

“Yes, I didn’t have any experience of the process in the JM plant, so obviously I over-dimensioned everything to be sure to achieve the intended physical transformations. I didn’t know how much the plant would have consumed, so therefore I introduced a heat exchanger after the plant that could dissipate the eventual excess thermal energy, condensing the steam to water that could be sent back to the E-Cat plant. I designed the heat exchanger so that it could dissipate all the heat from the E-Cat plant, in the case of malfunctioning of the JM plant, since I didn’t want to stop the E-Cat plant, because I needed to make the famous 350 days of operation within 400 days [according to the license agreement].“

This makes no business sense. A cooling tower (Smith shows one) could have been purchased and easily installed, and then, later, sold when no longer needed. 

Problem is, this wasn’t made clear to IH, at all. Further, the GPT requirements did not actually require a continuous megawatt, they only required COP. All this would have been much more easily handled with a simple agreement with IH, and then if power wasn’t needed, shut down reactors (but leave at least one running at a COP of 6.0 minimum, or a few, if one wants to insist on that 350 day stuff)! If the plant cannot be controlled that way, it would surely be very dangerous! The heat exchanger and what it required was a system change, clearly not mentioned to IH at all. The only kind of process that could actually dissipate a major fraction of the power would be phase change (simple version: melt ice.) It was obvious ab initio that a major heat exchanger would be needed. This can be purchased off-the shelf, as rooftop cooling towers, cheaply. Why go to all the trouble to make one from scratch, and why put it in the mezzanine?

I think the answer is obvious: this heat exchanger only existed after-the-fact, in Rossi’s imagination. If it were in the obvious place, on the roof, it would have been visible, so it couldn’t be there! Perhaps there might have been some regulatory problem, but then this would reveal that Rossi, ah, fudges and hides. If he got fire department approval for his reactor assembly, it was based on power input, not actual  (or expected) generated power. Deception. Don’t leave home without it!

In fact, the entire idea of a megawatt test was insane. But that is what Rossi wanted and had declared in 2011.

So how much thermal power could the heat exchanger dissipate?

“One megawatt.“

This is controversial. Wong thought it could do the job. Others have said, no, but the idea of the heat exchanger was introduced late in the Discovery process, not early, so there was less consideration of it. Rossi could have put a standard cooling tower on the roof, no controversy. Or Rossi could have agreed with IH for a different GPT, IH was apparently quite amenable to that.

And you didn’t have any photos of the heat exchanger?

“No. I never take photos. I don’t need them. I never take pictures of my prototypes.”

Rossi always has reasons. This was not a “prototype,” it was allegedly a fully-functioning heat exchanger that had to be working every day of the test, and before the test, as soon as the reactor was in operation. It had to be there first. But nobody saw it or saw any sign of it. The jury would have loved this. Easy to understand. Murray, there at the end of the test, would have seen evidence. He was looking for evidence of how the warehouse was cooled. He didn’t see it, and then Rossi claims he dismantled it, after the “test,” making it impossible to actually start up the reactor again, if anyone wanted to do that. This was not a real chemical operation, and it had served its purpose, a faux “test” under full Rossi control, unlike the original GPT concept, which would have been under full IH control, at least full detailed observation.

This was the famous heat exchanger in the mezzanine of the premises in Doral where the one-year test was run. The heat exchanger was questioned by the defense in the lawsuit since there were no photos or other proof of its existence.

Not the only reason, and, again, “proof” is a strong word. There was actually no evidence at all of its existence other than Rossi Says. Okay, Engineer48 on E-Catworld.com claims that a photo of a tree outside the window showed heat damage. It sure would have damaged the tree! It would have killed it. I don’t see what E48 sees. Maybe if you squint, just right…. He also claims there were some scratches on the floor, that show …. what? Where did all the materials go? Rossi says he “repurposed them.” Where? This was a huge pile of stainless steel pipe. Did he have receipts? None were produced. Did he hire a crew to install and then remove them? Yes. Off the street, and no, no record, probably he paid them in cash.

You can always come up with some explanation…. But a jury will decide (and if we need it, we will decide) based, not on proof, which is rare outside of mathematics, but on the preponderance of the evidence, and to decide that, one needs to look at all the evidence, not just what one side or another claims.

That’s what we have now, a huge mass of evidence, that can’t be hidden. If someone wants to know, read the evidence, not merely me or Mats Lewan or Andrea Rossi or Engineer48 (who has a clear conflict of interest). Use all of us to consider arguments, but … you are the judge and jury for your own life decisions. If you are considering investing, and you depend on bloggers, ah, be really careful! If you are an inventor considering working with Industrial Heat, will you follow what Sifferkoll has written? Sanely, you will check it out yourself. Sifferkoll presents evidence, to be sure, but what does it mean? that’s up to you! Again, be careful, what Sifferkoll claims as proof of Cherokee (and thus IH) misbehavior is simply normal business practice that he doesn’t understand. So study it! Don’t just look at cherry-picked anecdotes, selected for ready — and misleading — appearances, by someone obviously convinced that Something is Terribly Wrong.

However, the plaintiffs’ expert witness Ph.D. Vincent Wong [Prof. of thermodynamics for engineers at the University of Florida] confirmed that Rossi’s description corresponded to a possible design for dissipating the necessary heat.

I agree, it might have worked. And it might not have. It’s marginal. Wong was shown a window being replaced, allegedly the window where the heat exchanger fans blew hot air out the front of the building. Only problem: this was about a year after the test ended and the heat exchanger was removed. So Rossi left the window out for a year? In Miami, with blowing rain being common? This would have caused interior damage. There are photographs from Google Street View in that period that appear to show reflections of the sky, i.e,. glass present. The noise from the heat exchanger would have been very, very noticeable. Nobody reported hearing or seeing it. These questions were not asked in most of the depositions, because they were taken too early. But they would have been asked at trial, you can bet on it.

Rossi was going to lose his primary case, that was obvious (and the case was obviously defective from the beginning, just from Rossi’s filings, and became far more clearly so as discovery proceeded). The question is what would have happened with the counterclaims. My sense is that IH would have prevailed on some counts, but monetary damages might have been relatively small. Recovering on the original payment of $10 million, very difficult, though they were certainly going to try. They could have ruined Johnson, but their own benefit from this might have been small. I do not know what considerations led them to accept the settlement we have seen. Nobody from IH is yet talking about it. I’m asking so eventually I may get some answers. Hopefully, I can get answers I can publish! I did just get the Day 4 transcript.

Rossi explained that it consisted of tubes and two fans blowing horizontally inside an isolated wooden construction attached to the windows where the heat was vented out. A large tube for the steam and a smaller tube for the returning water went through the small door to the mezzanine at the lower left corner.

Yes, that’s what he claimed. The door would have been open, I think. Those fans would have been quite noisy. This would all have been visible from outside the customer area. But because nobody suspected the existence of a heat exchanger (and when asked last year, Rossi did not mention it), searches were not more narrowly focused. Rossi confused this all and continues to confuse it.

Rossi explained a couple of things with regard to the heat exchanger.

A ‘circulator’ was used to stabilize the flow of steam and water through the whole system. Rossi wouldn’t comment on further data of the circulator since he said he was preparing a patent for this device.
This circulator had nothing to do with a pump of the model ‘Grundfos’ that was brought up by the defense’s expert witness Rick Smith who suggested that the Grundfos pump was used to make hot water flow through the system and that no steam was produced.

I advise against relying on Rossi for statements of what Smith claimed. What were raised were possibilities. I.e., “may have been used.” As an example, very strangely, the flow meter had a sending unit that would have allowed automated data collection. This wasn’t used. The basic unit was undersized, designed for higher flow than was used, not actually rated for accuracy at the relatively low flow in the system. However, the sender would have provided higher resolution, at least. There is a suggested fraud mode. (A “fraud mode” would involve deliberate deception, as distinct from error. The Defkalion flow meter artifact could have been error, maybe. A fraud mode, if it could be proven — which wasn’t claimed –, would prove fraudulent intent.) An obvious one: at night, run a pump that floods the system and winds up the flow meter. Indeed, if this is run at night, one could run it until the flow meter reads exactly what is desired, thus explaining the remarkably constant values, in spite of other operational variations in the system. “Explanations” are never proof — though sometimes they indicate the state of the explainer.

The real use for the Grundfos pump was instead to push the water through a by-pass with a filter about once a week to make it cleaner.

That’s plausible. However, this is all complexity added to the system that wasn’t covered by Penon.

Rossi also addressed the claim made by IH that producing one megawatt of heat inside the building where the test was run would have made it so hot that you couldn’t have stayed there. First, he noted that the sun on a sunny day radiates about 1 kW per m2 and that the building, having a roof of about 1,000 m2 normally would have received about 1 MW of heat from the sun, without making it too hot in the building, even though the roof was barely insulated.

That’s one of Rossi’s nutso arguments that can sound plausible if one is inclined to believe him. Solar irradiance does not generate much heat “inside the building.” The figure for Miami seems to run between 1000–2000 BTU per day. “Barely insulated” doesn’t cover the fact. Most heat will be reflected. The roof itself will get too hot to touch, and if the air in the building got that hot, it would be fatal, and a common example is an automobile, which, on a hot day, will quickly reach fatal temperatures. This doesn’t happen in an ordinary building, and why not? I created large protective structures in a desert, weather very hot, using nothing but one layer of paper. Very little “insulation,” but high reflectance. White newsprint paper, I got the rolls from a printer as roll ends. Shade. Really, this is obvious.

The figure of about 1 kW per square meter is about right; in fact, that is called “one sun.” However, the roof does not “receive” a kilowatt per square meter from the sun, because most of the energy is reflected. Insulation is only one factor, different from reflectance. What is absorbed will heat the roof, and then whatever insulation is there will slow heat transfer to the interior.

Furthermore, it had large openings with exhausts for venting air out of the building. Then the JM plant consumed on average 20 to 40 percent of the produced heat, and the rest was vented out with the heat exchanger.

The openings have been considered and modelled. Wong, in his deposition, acknowledged that without the heat exchanger, and a megawatt of power, the building would have become uninhabitable. Wong was evasive, encouraged to be so by Evans (a Rossi attorney at the time, later withdrew), but finally acknowledged the matter. See deposition pages 147-150.

(Wong starts out by asserting that the heat was probably being used to heat some industrial process, as if this would make a big difference. It would, if there was major product being moved. But such processes are normally not efficient, thus most of the heat is “waste heat,” and, indeed, large quantities of product would be required. Wong had no clue about this, as a practical reality. Wong was evasive, and why? He didn’t want to say something because it was what Murray had said. This shows that he was not simply providing expertise, but argument on a side. He knows the facility would become unbearably hot. He ends up acknowledging that the difference between his analysis and that of Murray is that Murray did not account for a heat exchanger, while Wong did. Obvious.

Rossi, with Mats, is beating a dead horse, he’s flat out wrong, but won’t admit it, because Rossi Never Gives Up. Mats knows Rossi’s character, but doesn’t confront or challenge it, knowing full well what would happen if he did.

Pump capacity

I then wanted to hear Rossi’s view on the discussion about the 24 smaller pumps feeding water into the E-Cat modules, which had become one of the defense’s major arguments against Rossi, and also one that attorney Christopher Pace raised at the beginning of the trial.

This is not an argument “against Rossi.” It’s just about asserted fact. The thinking is primitive. It is not a “major argument,” other than being quite simple to present and understand. It was, in fact, raised in the IH Opening statement, that is correct.

Update: This issue is covered on Pumped Up or Stupid Mistake, and then OMG! Good news!

“This is my favorite because now we’re going to have some fun. You need to see it from a ridiculous side because it’s so ridiculous that you can’t take it seriously.”

Rossi thinks he has a zinger here. And maybe he does. However, the matter is not so simple, and quite a few people have looked at this, and, in my mind, it’s not fully resolved. To fully resolve it someone needs to actually test one of these pumps; what is obvious is that the pump data sheets do not contemplate the conditions Rossi describes as actual usage.

[Update: there is now a project started by some LENR Forum people to actually measure the Prominent pump output. OMG! Actual experimental evidence! Will Lewan look at this? There are possible pitfalls, but … they can be avoided and, in fact, anyone could do this. Not even expensive. If any controversy remains, MFMP could do it, and MFMP does have a reputation for reporting their results, “exciting” or otherwise.]

Not mentioned by Rossi is that the pumps are metering pumps, not “workhorse pumps.” A metering pump is designed to deliver a controlled flow, with relative independence from pressure variations.

The argument, which was brought up in the Expert Report by engineer Rick A. Smith, was based on an observation that on the name plate of the pump it said ’32 l/h.’ In his report, Smith concluded that this was the maximum capacity of the pump, and multiplying 32×24 you get 768 l/h which, if evaporated, only consumes 482 kW—less than half of a megawatt.

It’s actually nominal capacity, not, technically, maximum. Or it is a “maximum setting,” again, not actually maximum flow. however, Rossi confuses this massively. If Smith erred, Smith erred, it happens all the time. Rossi commonly converts the alleged errors of others into proof of incredible stupidity. The basic argument as presented by Pace in the opening probably stands. We will find out. Then it’s further confused with the “recirculation pump,” which, of course, might be able to increase flow to what was claimed. It could make the flow whatever they want; problem is, it could also flood the system, possibly causing all the measurements to become meaningless.

The Expert Report. There are two expert reports by Smith. The second one was issued after inspecting the facility. Rossi is referring to the second, supplemental report. This is the cited page.

The issue is that just next to ’32 l/h’ it says ’02 bar’. The reason is that any pump’s capacity depends on the pressure it needs to overcome to pump the water, the same way as the flow of air you can blow out of your mouth depends on how open it is. Now, 2 bars correspond to the pressure under 20 meters of water, which is way beyond the pressure in the E-Cat plant, and the pumps’ capacity in the actual situation was therefore much larger because the pressure on the pumps was about 1/10 of bar.

Mats here loses attribution. Is this his own explanation, or is it Rossi’s? This is definitely Rossi’s argument, but is treated as fact by Lewan. If Lewan were retaining journalistic reserve, this would be very obvious to him, trained journalists simply don’t do this.

This is a misleading explanation. Mats is treating this pump as “any pump.” (Following Rossi; this is what has often happened, Rossi gives an explanation that seems plausible on first impression to some observer, and it is then presented by the observer to others as fact. Happened, very obviously, in the Lugano report.)

It is not just “any pump,” it is a metering pump, designed to deliver a measured “dose,” and it is correct that the rating on the label is not maximum flow, per se, but more likely maximum metering setting. Apparently at low pressure, these pumps may be inaccurate, probably due to leakage in the internal flow regulators. This leakage can even cause high variation from the “stated flow,” which is what the pump reads on its display. However, that high variation is probably not at maximum setting, but at much lower flow settings. It doesn’t seem plausible that at low pressure, as described, the flow error would be anywhere near as high as Rossi claims. However, the proof would be in experiment. It is possible that someone will obtain direct manufacturer information, the manuals are vague on the issue. Bottom line, these pumps were not intended to operate accurately at such low pressure.

[Great minds think alike. There is, as linked above, a project to measure the actual capacity of the pump.]

I have a beginning look at this in the post Pumped up or Stupid Mistake.

In a comment there, there is an estimate from published data on the pump of a possible 20% increase in rate at 0 bar. I do not consider any of this definitive, but the matter is, quite simply, not as Rossi presents it.

“Here comes the comic aspect. At the trial, you cannot bring documents that you haven’t produced during the discovery phase so I would have needed to explain to the jury, which was not composed of experts on the matter, that the capacity of a pump is a function of the pressure.

Technically correct but highly misleading in this example. Lots of Rossi “facts” are like that. Depending on design, and within operating specifications, metering pumps can be quite independent of pressure. Obviously, a pump is pressure-limited, but the limit would be the force that the pump can exert on the fluid, and below that limit, it could be quite insensitive. The general principle here, as applied to a metering pump, is just plain wrong, so Rossi is either ignorant or lying, and Mats seems to have accepted this deception as fact.

Again, experiment trumps theory, always. But Rossi was using theory here to explain, not actual experiment.

I would have had to explain that the flow rate of a pump is an integral, not a number, as any intelligent engineer knows. It would have been a little difficult, albeit possible.

If Rossi had been allowed by his attorneys to present this to the jury, IH attorneys would have torn him to shreds. The flow rate is an integral? That’s nuts! Total flow is the integral of the flow rate. Rate is the differential of the total flow. And anyone who knows the mathematics of physics knows this. In the jury pool there were members who had the math background. I know the strongest weren’t selected — for other reasons.

This is not all that complicated, if presented by attorneys or experts with skill. Smith, in fact, has high communication skills, this is obvious, reading his reports and deposition. And the little piece of supposed fact here is actually irrelevant, Rossi introducing techno-confusion. He has often done it on his blog. He is someone who thinks he’s smarter than he is, and adoring fans don’t help. None of this means he doesn’t have reactors that work, but it does mean that what Rossi Says is not reliable.

“But during his deposition, Smith, after having insulted me and Penon [the independent controller], several times, saying that we were fraudsters

I don’t recall Smith saying that. Maybe someone can point it out. This is the World According to Rossi. What the evidence in the case establishes is that Rossi presents information designed to mislead. That’s not possible to deny, reviewing the case documents. I recall no claim at all that Penon was a “fraudster.” The Penon data shows anomalies, something is off, apparently. Penon was fed data by Rossi. Rossi apparently destroyed the emails. Conclude what you like. The Penon report doesn’t present the raw flowmeter data, just daily difference (i.e., calculated), and very strangely constant, with a system facing many variations. The legal point is that the report cannot be trusted, not that it was fraud. Explaining the anomalies with clear evidence could be impossible because of the spoliation.

and how can you say that with 32 l/h and 24 pumps you produce a megawatt, and so on, then he said something like ‘now I will show you the brochure of the pump, 120 pages of technical data,’ as if he wanted to show how much of an expert he was.

This is all personal fluff, imagination of the motivation of another, a motivation not actually likely for Smith, who, from his comments, could care less, he DGAF what people thought of him. Rossi doesn’t give me enough evidence to find what he’s talking about, and it’s irrelevant.  Mentioning the pump manual (not “brochure,”) would be completely normal if asked how he knew something.

Then you need to know that I have used these pumps for years and know the brochure by heart. I opened the brochure and looked at the page where I knew that the capacity was specified, and it said ‘minimum capacity at 2 bars pressure, 32 l/h.’ But in his report, Smith had written maximum capacity.

We have looked at the manual. It’s here. There is also a brochure, here.

Smith did write “maximum capacity,” but he was also clear that he was translating “Dosierleistung.” When I look that up I find “dosing capacity.” Rossi is correct that this is not literally a maximum, though ‘capacity’ implies maximum. I read the specification as the maximum setting for the pump, the maximum “stated rate.” Remember, this is a dosing pump, not a workhorse where faster is better.

“When he said this I could have reacted, asking if he had read the brochure, open it and make him read. But we preferred to remain silent, letting them being convinced that it had passed as true, just like when you have an enemy and you let him run and get himself pierced by your bayonet. I showed it to my attorney who laughed under his mustache, and we would then have brought it out at the trial. We would have destroyed them.

Rossi also apparently deceived his attorneys. Or they knew and simply liked his money. 

Actually, if this is the error he claims, this would very likely have been realized and IH simply would not have presented this in the evidentiary phase, it wasn’t a crucial part of their case, merely something very simple that could be shown and understood. However, at this point, it looks like it may not have been an error.

Because half of Smith’s report talks about this and the other half about things that are related. But the problem is—we would have won, but they would have kept the license. That’s why my lawyers told me ‘you need to tell us clearly which is your priority—getting the money or the license because listen, you won’t have both.’ And I said the license because the license has an enormous value not only in economic terms but also in technological, philosophical, and existential terms.”

And personal terms, to Rossi, who always wants to be in full control. He doesn’t really trust anyone else.

But, what do you think—didn’t they ever realize that they were wrong?

Lewan appears to be assuming Rossi is correct and a skilled engineer is wrong. It’s definitely possible, though not particularly likely. Experts make mistakes. That’s obvious. Will Lewan check these things out? This is not really difficult. I’m a blogger, not exactly a journalist, but … I might check it out further. I prefer, generally, to delegate these things to my readership — and then I will check what they find. That makes far better use of my time and l love to involve community, it’s far more fun than doing everything myself — my older habit.

I think… I’m extremely puzzled by the fact that two engineers, Murray and Smith, are so naive not to realize making errors of this kind. I cannot make conclusions because I cannot start imagining things. I can only say that they probably all thought we were fools. I think that their problem, from the beginning to the end of this affair, was just that—they underestimated the person they had in front of them enormously. I believe that they thought they could write such things without my noticing it. It’s impossible that two good engineers with excellent careers, like Murray and Smith, really can have thought that something like that was true, because if a student at the first year of engineering school takes the exam in thermodynamics and tells his professor that a pump, of which the specifications says that its minimum capacity at 2 bars is 32 l/h, has a maximum capacity of 32 l/h, he would have been sent home immediately.”

Rossi often argues like this, makes up a hypothetical situation involving something he thinks is really stupid, with a hypothetical professor, then the imaginary professor confirms his idea.

What is the 32 l/h figure? It is a dosing capacity. Can the meter dose at a rate less than that? Of course, that’s the maximum stated rate, it’s a setting, apparently, unless I’m way off here. Rossi has actually worked with these pumps, which would ordinarily create a level of respect. However, Rossi isn’t ordinary, and there are certain errors that he has made for years, in spite of them being pointed out. He takes all critique as enmity and “clownery.” He doesn’t actually consider how it might be right. He doesn’t look deeper than his own set ideas.

Continuing this, what is the maximum flow? As I read the evidence, it is the maximum set rate plus possible error under the conditions given. So, yes, it can be higher. But not much higher, as Rossi claims below. Does Rossi claim to have actually measured this? Under what conditions?

And maybe he’s right. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. His arguments, however, are not convincing to those who are careful.

Mats saw Rossi arguing against experts in that Hydro Fusion test, obviously convinced that he was right, and he has more recently made statements that show he has never understood the power measurement issue. (This was the test where Rossi later claimed to Industrial Heat that he had deliberately made the reactor fail, but not mentioning the measurement issue. So either Rossi was stuck on his own completely incorrect ideas, as appeared to Mats, or he was putting on an elaborate show to deceive Hydro Fusion — and Mats.) However it’s sliced, Rossi is often some combination of wrong and deceptive, and the deceptive part is beyond a shadow of doubt.

By the way, since you know these pumps, what capacity do they have at the actual pressure in the plant—about 0.2 bars?

“About 75 l/h.”

So he has it as double, but this is simply Rossi Says at this point. There is no other evidence that I’ve seen supporting his position. There is a statement in a brochure that these dosing pumps can, at atmospheric pressure, deliver two to three times the “stated rate.” That is interpreted by a Rossi supporter as the specified rate on the label, but that isn’t what it actually says. The real meaning is, in my opinion, not clear, but easily it could simply mean that you might have a setting of 1 l/h on the display, and an actual delivery rate two or three times that. Not necessarily at the full allowed setting, which appears to be 32 l/h.

The brochure linked above has this at the very beginning:

The gamma/L is a diaphragm-type, solenoid-driven, microprocessor based metering pump with maximum capacities to 8.4 gph (32.0 L/h) and maximum backpressures to 253 psig (17.5 bar).

So perhaps we might cut a little slack for Smith saying that the maximum capacity is 32 l/h, since the brochure actually states that. The manual does have a specification for “minimum capacity,” as Rossi claims, at 2 bar pressure. It’s a chart, not a sentence as implied, but close enough. It has this as 32 l/h at 2 bar, and 36.2 l/h at 1 bar. It is not unreasonable to extrapolate this to 0 bar (though certainly not reliable). That leads to a figure of 40.4 l/hr. However, I’m quite unclear on what “minimum capacity” means for a metering pump, because the “capacity” can obviously be lower if the pump is set lower. This kind of unclarity breeds error. Bottom line, what will one of these pumps actually deliver under the stated conditions? This is not at all difficult to measure with a bucket and a stopwatch, which is how these things are normally tested. In order to meet the 1500 kg/hour that is claimed from the flow meter, with 24 pumps, 62.5 kg/hr would be needed. A kilogram of water is close enough to a liter for these purposes.

The issue here is not the system flow rate, per se, it is whether or not the reactor pumps could deliver that flow rate. By introducing other pumps, it all gets more complicated. Had this been done openly, not a problem. But it wasn’t.

Going back in time—when did you first understand that things were not going well between you and IH?

“When I discovered that IH was making agreements with our competitors. At that point, I understood that they were trying to fill up their portfolio of intellectual property in view of litigation with us pending the huge payment they were going to have to pay. It was instinct—I had no proof, but eventually, the facts confirmed this instinctive doubt.”

He doesn’t respond with when it happened. In the timeline Chaiken constructed, the point was to show an alleged change in attitude on the part of IH. Supposedly when they got the $50 million from Woodford, IH didn’t need Rossi any more. There was no sign that IH was considering litigation with Rossi, he’s made that up. They wanted him to teach them how to make devices that worked. But they allowed him to run the Doral power sale and demonstration plant, and cooperated. The Woodford sale closed in May, 2015, after the Doral “test” had been running for about three months. In July, IH decided they needed to take a closer look, with an expert, so scheduled a visit with Vaughn and Murray, whom they had hired to manage engineering. Rossi refused to allow it, violating the Term Sheet which explicitly allowed such visits. Later, in a pleading, Rossi remarkably explained this as being because he believed Murray was a “spy.” But hadn’t Rossi already disclosed his secrets to IH? (or if there were new ones, related to new developments, i.e., Quark-X, wasn’t he obligated to disclose them?)

There was nothing about the License Agreement that didn’t allow IH to diversify. They actually were permitted to sublicense the Rossi technology, though there is no evidence that they actually disclosed it. This was all Rossi paranoia, here confirmed. Does Mats realize that?

This story has often been told by Rossi as Woodford investing because they were so impressed with the Doral plant. However, they had committed before they had seen that plant. Above, Rossi mentions a prior test that Woodford participated in. This isn’t public information, as far as I know. It may be true or not. But Woodford very clearly didn’t actually invest in Rossi technology, but in all the other stuff. That obviously enraged Rossi. He had created this, though, by being unresponsive to IH requests for assistance — if we assume that he actually had a real technology. Otherwise this is all smokescreen, fluff.

And later, on January 8, 2016, there was a meeting in Miami between you, Darden and the lawyers. What can you say about that meeting?

“Nothing, because it was a meeting between lawyers and covered by NDA.”

Implausible, though not impossible. A party may disclose their meeting with lawyers. The lawyers may not disclose it. But there might have been special conditions. We do know what conflict existed at that point, there are documents. Contrary to common Rossi claims, it simply is not true that IH did not complain “until it was time to pay.” They informed Rossi long before “time to pay,” according to his demand, that they did not consider Doral was the GPT, nor had they consented to Penon as ERV for a GPT there. Rossi actually filed the lawsuit a day prematurely, the payment was not yet late. But he did know they wouldn’t pay.

Now, there’s much more to comment, but leaving all this behind, what are your plans now?

And Rossi goes on to give his plans for starting “industrialization” of products. I’m not commenting on that. I prefer to comment where I have knowledge.

[…]

Finally—what happened to your hair?

Again, that’s Rossi’s private business. As I wrote in the blog about the trial, his wig looked normal and was attractive. It’s unfortunate that some have made light of it, making some remarks about “false hair” as if it means something about his character. That is aggressively and gratuitously rude, and it saddens me to see it.

When Rossi filed the lawsuit against IH I had to take a step back and look at all possible explanations. I was and have been open to the possibility that Rossi was involved in fraud and conspiracy. But during the discovery phase of the litigation, it became obvious that the defense couldn’t produce any convincing evidence for this hypothesis.

Mats, this is preposterous. What you have done is to set up a very narrow definition of “fraud.” Rossi engaged in fraudulent representation. The evidence is overwhelming, the situation is far from what you say, which is obviously not based on an actual examination of evidence, but on looking for something to leap out at you about fake data. There are problems with the data, none of which rise to the level of clear fraud. That’s not the core problem. The core is that what Rossi says cannot be trusted.

All technical arguments that were put forward were hollow and easily torn apart by people with engineering training.

You are focusing on technical arguments while you have a shallow knowledge of them. Your overall assessment is not based on your personal discussion with unbiased people who have no axe to grind, but on conversations in highly biased environments.

Yet, these arguments were continuously repeated by a number of people, possibly related to IH, at various forums.

There is only one person “related to IH” who has discussed this affair, and that is Dewey Weaver, who becomes a figure in the case, as an IH investor and contractor. Weaver is not among those with high engineering knowledge who have discussed the technical arguments. Weaver made highly personal arguments based on his personal and direct knowledge of Rossi and the people and the history of the relationship, not technical arguments.

Mats, it looks like you have swallowed Sifferkoll’s obviously paranoid conspiracy theory. Sifferkoll has claimed that various people have been paid to attack Rossi. There isn’t a shred of evidence of that; Sifferkooll puts together random shreds of connections, thinking, for example, that because Eric Walker was affiliated with the Baha’i faith, there is a “fundamentalist” religious conspiracy to suppress LENR (and he’s made the same argument about me, because I’m Muslim) and he’s also claimed that I’m paid to write against Rossi, when my limited funding, covering expenses, came from a source completely unrelated to Industrial Heat and Rossi, and came with no strings attached, it was actually granted for writing about Wikipedia process — and lately I’ve been crowd-funded, that’s how I went to Miami for the trial.

None of my sources have been related to Industrial Heat. This is all paranoia, very similar to Rossi himself.

Since there was no way to discuss them in a serious way I early decided to stay away from such discussions, also closing the comment feature on this blog, yet I admire a few individuals, mostly anonymous, who continued to fight for what they considered to be the truth in those discussions.

Foolish decision, allowing you to remain ignorant. Yes, the ordinary blogs can be a mess, but this one was created to set up coherent discussions, far deeper content. It takes little courage, Mats, to be an “anonymous fighter for truth,” because there is no responsibility.

You know that I’m a real and known person, we had personal history, and I’m responsible for what I write. I created Wikiversity resources years ago so that serious writing could be done, including serious discussions. What you are thinking of as “truth,” unfortunately, is mostly conspiracy theory. There are some anonymous writers who are dedicated to objective analysis, but …. you have not been paying attention, your activity has mostly — or entirely — been on E-Cat World, which is explicitly Planet Rossi, contrary opinion is often banned. I’ve been allowed to post there, to be sure, but that’s fairly unusual (Thanks, Frank!). The actual IH voice, even though he’s not official, at least the connection is real, Dewey Weaver, is apparently not free to comment there.

I am confident that if Rossi were really involved in fraud, evidence for that would have been found during the time—a year and a half—since IH claimed to have started to be suspicious about Rossi.

Mats, you have not considered most of the evidence of fraudulent representation. You have not done your own analyses, looking for the balance, the preponderance of evidence. You may be confident, but your confidence is rooted in ignorance, sorry to say. I’m truly disappointed, I did expect better of you.

Looking back and noting that no such evidence was found, while hollow arguments have been shouted out loud, I have very little doubt that the E-Cat technology is real and that the one-year test was a clear success of a world changing technology, producing 1 MW of heat without emissions, from small amounts of harmless fuel at a COP of about 80 for a whole year!

You have studied neither the evidence in the case — it is voluminous — nor the arguments, yet you dismiss them as hollow. Some arguments are, indeed, hollow. Which ones? You just presented some arguments from Rossi, some of which were hollow. You’ve lost it, Mats.

Noting this I have also started investigating the timing for relaunching the energy conference I proposed in 2016—the New Energy World Symposium, addressing the consequences of LENR based technologies for industry, society, and finance.

Now the fun can start!

Good luck. I won’t be there. LENR technology isn’t ready, we are still at the basic science level. That’s where I’ll be, in Texas, at Texas Tech where crucial heat/helium research is being done, and at ICCF-21, which was planned to be hosted by IH in North Carolina, but because of the lawsuit, they found it necessary to withdraw, and I’m in contact with possible organizers, I’m hoping that some support can be found.

Rossi is an enemy of LENR research, sucking the life out of it. His attitude about investment in alternatives betrays his real position, he is anti-science and anti-research, except for his own.

And you are helping promote this. If you decide to look deeper, start the conversation, you would be welcome.

§

Documents:

The document defining the terms of the settlement.

Information I have, so far, indicates that this is not yet fully signed.

Rossi’s notes addressing the Expert Report by Rick Smith.

Rossi’s notes regarding arguments raised by Joseph A. Murray.

§

Note: All comments to this post will need to be confirmed by me.

So far, all fawning praise. If that’s what you like, you are welcome to it. You had some experts, people with actual knowledge, commenting before. You insulted them.

I have commented on the Lewan post, citing this page. The comment was made at July 20, 2017 at 18:33 and is awaiting moderator approval. (I draw no conclusions from the delay. No additional comments have been accepted since then.)

Reproducibility of Excess of Power and Evidence of 4He in Palladium Foils Loaded with Deuterium

This is a slide presentation from 2005, authored by M.Apicella(1), H. Branover(2), E. Castagna(3), I. Dardik(4) A. El Boher(2), S.Lesin(2),
G. Mazzitelli(1), M. McKubre(5), F.Sarto(1), C. Sibilia(3), E. Santoro(1), F. Tanzella(5), V. Violante(1), T. Zilov(2)
(1) ENEA Frascati Research Center V.le E. Fermi 45 00044 Frascati (RM) ItalyV. le E. Fermi 45 italy
(2) Energetics, Ltd, Omer Industrial Park 84965 Israel)
(3) La Sapienza University, Via Scarpa, 14 00100 (Roma) Italy
(4) Energetics LLC 7 Fieldview Lane, Califon, NJ 07830 USA
(5) SRI International 333 Ravenswood Ave, Menlo Park CA 94025 USA.

I’ve uploaded the file here. The occasion today is that Kirk Shanahan posted a commentary on this presentation on LENR Forum, in response to my suggestion that he read my 2015 Current Science paper — I had cited this document for a small part of it. Kirk commonly turns every conversation into his favorite topic, this was no exception. Perhaps we will learn something here.

Abd said I should read his paper, so I did. Nothing but recitation of what others say.

Indeed. It’s a review, not something new, and most of what is cited was quite old. However, what I wrote in that paper was considered significant by McKubre, enough to be mentioned in his 2016 ICCF-20 keynote.

In his review of helium-4 and heat correlations in 2015, Abd ul-Rahman Lomax[10] states: “Miles was amply confirmed, and precision has increased. While there are outliers, there is no experimental evidence contradicting the correlation, and only the exact ratio remains in question. In this, we have direct evidence that the effect is real and is nuclear in nature; the mechanism remains a mystery well worth exploration.” For an experimental result of earth shattering importance, first reported publicly in 1991, it took until 2015, 24 years, for this conclusion to be stated with such clarity and conviction. Why? And even now not every researcher in the CMNS world would agree that helium-4 is the primary product, or even a nuclear one!

What was largely new with the paper was the title, “Replicable cold fusion experiment: heat/helium ratio.” This, unlike most LENR experiments, is quantitatively replicable.

He referenced a Powerpoint presentation by a group of authors whose primary CFer is McKubre that details some positive CF experiments (http://www.lenr-canr.org/acrobat/ApicellaMreproducib.pdf) that I’d like to comment on.

“Primary CFer” is standard Shanahan insult. Because of language like this, I’m not about to take any issues that are legitimately raised here to the CF research community for comment, but if such consultation becomes appropriate, I’ll restate it all, leaving out the load of carp.

Many of the authors are familar names to me. Then again, I actually study the field instead of just throwing darts at it occasionally. Links added.

At the end in the background material there is a slide that actually has a calibration equation on it for their isoperibolic calorimeter. It gives electrolyte temp as a function of input power. The equation is: Telec = -0.1649 * Pin2 + 5.3636*Pin + 24.337, and it has a multiple R2 value of 1, implying it is a very highly precise equation.

The document doesn’t actually say “Telec” but it is probably the electrolyte temperature. It is the average temperature of two PT-100 sensors. The caption does not thoroughly explain what this is. “By electrolysis in LiOD” is vague.” It is presumably a D2O solution of LiOD. But calibration by electrolysis, if that is what they mean, would be problematic. It gets complicated with deuterium evolution, etc. I’d think they would calibrate with a resistor. So this is a question that could be asked of Violante.

That is a curve fit for calibration data, not precisely, only plotted. I’m not thrilled with the claimed R2 = 1, but it may simply mean that the behavior was within measurement precision. This wasn’t a scientific paper, it was a presentation at an APS meeting, by multiple authors working at different institutions. It was not peer reviewed, I expect.

“Their” refers to ENEA Frascati, i.e., Apicella, Santoro, and Violante, and to their Laser-triggered work using isoperibolic calorimetry. that also measured helium.

This can be reversed to predict Pin given the Telec values. I did it by computing Telec for Pin values of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6W, and then using the Excel fitting routine for a quadratic. I got this equation: Pin = .0022001*Telec2 +.0060493*Telec -2.6978, with an R2 = .99997 (I’m not sure why it didn’t give 1.0, probably round off error). Of course excess power (Pex) is given by Pex = Pout – Pin, and in calibration we set Pout = Pin.

The question is what a small change in calibration constants would do to apparent excess heat. So I started with the McK equation to compute Telec for the Pin’s given above, then changed the linear and quadratic term constants in the reversed equation by +1%, and recomputed the ‘new’ expected Telec.

A small problem. This is not a “McK equation.” This is for ENEA Frascati work. There is much more information on this specific work in Apicella et al, Some Recent Results at ENEA, 2005.

Then I went back to the original McK equation and computed the Pout values for those new Telec’s. At 6W Pin, the shifted equation gives an apparent excess heat of ~78 mW. In my Storms’ reanalysis, I found a +/- 2.5% shift, which translates here to a 195 mW 1 sigma value (for 2.5% shift). Thus the 3-sigma band is +/- 585 mW, which can be rounded up to 600 mW band. Thus theoretically the excess power signal needs to exceed 600 mW to be ‘out of the noise’ if a 1% CCS has occurred.

A signals has no need. We do, as humans. Need for what?

I would certainly not assert that the ENEA results are “major heat,” however, a 1% calibration constant shift would be large. Shanahan’s work and conclusions have never been confirmed. I have not verified his calculations here, but I have no reason to doubt them, they simply are not surprising, in themselves, i.e., Shahanan has been writing this for years.

In careful work, calibrations are not just done before an experiment, they will also be done after. Calibrations do shift, though the magnitude he is proposing seems high. Most electrochemists dismiss Shanahan out of hand, his CCS has been called “random.” However, in fact, he is proposing a systematic shift. If it is systematic it should not be difficult to confirm.

Shanahan’s complaints, though, are not likely to lead to that.

McK, et al have several slides claiming excess power. For example, their 3rd slide shows an excess power peak from a flow calorimeter of ~90 mW in a spike, smoothed I say more like 70 mW. This is approximately the same magnitude as the 1% CCS effect.

This presentation is not “McK, et al.” The lead presenter, by which the paper is cited, is Apicella of ENEA. Slide 3 should be compared with slide 2, which with H2O and 0.1 M LiOH. Notice how the cumulative energy out remains below the cumulative energy in, showing apparent calorimetry capture of 97.5%. There are lots of aspects I don’t like about the presentation. Slide 3 may be mislabeled, at least in the ICCF conference paper this is captioned as isoperibolic.

So … a 1% CCS effect is imagined to appear in the middle of an experiment like this, and then disappear? I do understand the irony: excess appears in the middle of an experiment and then disappears. However, Shanahan’s CCS is an anomaly that has not been confirmed by anyone. He then ignores most of the rest of the evidence.

Slide 6 show]s] “Excess Power at SRI”. They seem to plot an excess power (very noisy) and a smoothed version that apparently uses the right Y-axis based on the figure legend across the top of the graph. Those plots show peak values of ~55 mW (guessing at the units, since they stated ‘Total Power = 214mW’), which is within the 1% CCS 1 sigma.

I don’t know what we are seeing there, the plot is not familiar to me. Many SRI reports do show this kind of noisy power plot. To understand this, I’d want to see the history of this cell and run. It’s simply not there. Whether Slide 6 made for an effective presentation would depend entirely on what was said about it. I’d rather not guess.

Their 8th slide shows more calorimetric results for laser triggered experiments. They plot energy and power on the same graph. Of note is at the start the output power slightly exceeds input power (i.e. positive small excess power signal) but it basically tracks the input power, which is a good indication that the calibration is off or there is something else going on (Storms’ first data set for Pt-Pt F&P cell work showed negative input power feedback due to ground loops). Later on, they get spiky output power when input power is constant. The spikes are about 190 mW peak values (~2.5 times the 1% CCS effect (or just a 2.5% CCS as found in Storms’ results)).

First, see Slide 2. This is a hydrogen control. This is what zero XP looks like, for a few hours. I’d really want to see much more to be thoroughly satisfied, but this is what they have. Hydrogen does not present this messy power output.

Slide 8 does not show more than two days of startup. The scale for this plot was not designed to show what may have been early excess power, but the accumulated energy has deviated early on. The plots of total input energy and total output energy are confusing; cold fusion researchers don’t seem to recognize the communication problem. However, the XP they are concerned with mostly shows up in the last days of this experiment. This is not impressive power, for sure, but it becomes more impressive when compared with the helium measurements.

So my point is that the apparent excess power/energy values shown in these slides could *easily* be a very small CCS. It seems important to me that the reality of these signals need to be determined and not just assumed to be real excess energy.

I don’t assume it’s real excess energy. It is a set of real measurements; unfortunately, we don’t have them. We have calculations done from them. It would be enough for the most important purposes that these measurements are handled consistently. “Very small” is Shanahan’s own view, not some reliable measure. 2.5% CCS hardly seems small to me, for something routinely observed to be much more stable.

Since I am looking at the Apicella, et al, slides – some other points:

In Slide 7, they state some conclusions which I find contradictory. In the first line they say: “(D/Pd > 0.9 in some cases also with less loading) have been observed at ENEA.” Then in the 2nd line they say: “We can conclude that high D loading is a necessary condition for excess of power production during loading of Pd with D.” But if one can get apparent excess power at <D/Pd=0.9, then it is incorrect to conclude that that is a requirement.

Yes, and this indicates poor editing. However, this is the reality: for a very long time, high loading was considered completely necessary. Experiments without that high loading normally did not show excess heat. The apparent contradiction goes away if we think that, say, 85% loading is high, and, historically, it used to be thought that anything above 70% loading was impossible. And that is why the early failed replications stopped loading at 70% or so, and why, now, we can look at those and see the failures as highly predictable.

However, there is recent work by Ed Storms that indicates that once conditions showing XP are set up, the loading may decline and XP may continue, quite a distance below those high numbers. This is unconfirmed, so far, but … it does make sense, given some of the odd events that have been reported, such as the original FP meltdown in about 1984.

Of course they don’t specifically say right there that >0.9 is the requirement, but in Slide 12 they do. These slides were presented in 2005, and today in 2017 the mantra is still “>0.9”. I disagree, it simply takes a little more work to get the effect when the Pd loading is <0.9.

I suggest not confusing initial conditions with what is necessary for a maintained effect.

In slide 10 they show some 4He results for laser-triggered experiments. I note that the indicated background level is ~0.55e16 and the strongest result is 1.05e16, i.e., less than 2X background.

Helium is very energetic. So sue God.

I find that to be ‘working in the noise’, and I require much more replication to be convinced this plot shows anything of value. There’s also no way to evaluate if these signals come from leaks or not.

Leaks would be unlikely to match an otherwise irrelevant and minor excess heat calculation. That is a “way to evaluate.” If Shanahan isn’t convinced, I’m not offended. He has a right to not be convinced. However, how much funding should be allocated to convincing him? What has happened is that the heat/helium evidence was considered by those who fund research to merit replication with increased precision, the classic way to test “pathological science.”

Much weaker evidence was seen by Huizenga in 1994 to be astonishing. So Shanahan’s assessment of that nothing “of value” has been shown is itself without value, worthless, exaggerated polemic, a broken record that he’s stuck playing out, maybe for the rest of his life. Ah, what a dismal prospect!

Slide 11 shows results from the SRI “M4” experiment. I’ve noted elsewhere that I have looked at the calorimetry of this run, and determined that it could well be affected by a CCS. However, there is some *very* fancy data workup going on here, and I require a full explanation of that to be able to evaluate the data’s validity. I asked McK twice for that info and never got it. The He values plotted here never exceed the usual outside air value of 5.22 ppm, and there is no report of what the 4He concentration was in the lab at the time the experiments were run, so we can’t honestly reject leaks once again.

What did Kirk ask? The data in that slide presentation is skimpy. The full report is as shown in my paper. The chart shown is not the original calculation; apparently McKubre found an error in the headspace volume and recalculated. (Which drove Krivit bonkers.) I still consider this work more or less seat of the pants and approximate. I have far higher expectations of Texas Tech and ENEA this time around. I’m hoping they use more of the Miles approach, but Shananan’s ascription of his CCS hypothesis to SRI flow calorimetry is problematic.

If he can convince THH that this is worth taking further, I’ll support that. But, bottom line, the heat/helium data almost totally demolishes Kirk’s argument. It becomes very, very unlikely that bogus heat and bogus helium data would match as well as has been observed, as often as has been observed.

Their 4th slide shows excess power from the Energetics lab that uses the “Superwave” on the input, and they don’t explain the calorimetric method. The excess is about 2.5W on an input of 4W. This clearly needs to be explained further, and the accuracy and precision clearly established, especially when the “Superwave” is being used. Ditto on the 5th slide, which is another Energetics lab results slide showing even greater apparent excess power.

The Superwave work was later replicated by SRI and ENEA, with extensive experimental series; this was published in the ACS LENR Sourcebook, 2008. I haven’t heard much about Superwave lately. The ET work went to the University of Missouri, the SKINR lab there.

None of the scientific approaches, so far, show promise for commercial power generation. Cold fusion at this point is a scientific curiosity. However, sufficient potential is there to justify exactly what both U.S. DoE reviews recommended: further research to address fundamental questions. Originally, it was thought that neutron radiation was important, it is now know that this was a complete red herring. Helium is the identified ash, there really isn’t another candidate with serious support. So measuring helium does become a method of verifying the heat, if that is considered necessary. Because measuring helium is difficult and can be expensive, finding other correlated measures would be of high value for the research.

Aiming at “convincing skeptics” is an obsolete concept that can backfire. Nailing down what is known is of high value, increasing predictability and clarity..

A mind is a terrible thing to waste

Kirk Shanahan is the most-recently published, practically the last standing critic of LENR who has been published in a peer-reviewed journal. His view of himself might be that he has demolished “cold fusioneers,” as he has called researchers and writers, but that they are stubborn and refuse to recognize utter defeat.

Funny how easy it is to imagine that about others and not notice the old saw: that when we have one finger pointing at others, we have four fingers pointing back at ourselves. Any sane skeptic must be aware of this problem, and not rely on self-assessment for conclusions about social position, argumentative success, and the like.

On LENR Forum, kirkshanahan wrote: 

Wow…I thought we had dispensed with Abd’s garbage on this forum. Oh well…one more time…

In this case, I didn’t post my “garbage” to LENR Forum, someone else did, and that’s a sign that someone else saw it as worthy of consideration. I like it this way. Consider it some kind of informal peer review. Zeus46 is anonymous, but so is most genuine peer review in journals.

Shanahan has never figured out how to use the Forum quotation interface, which would allow him to properly attribute the quotation. He makes his attitude clear. Most LENR writers don’t bother with Shanahan any more. I’ve taken him seriously, have agreed that some of the dismissal of Shanahan may be unfair, and, as part of this consideration, I have identified and pointed out errors; yet I have never encountered gratitude for this, only abuse. I continue only for one reason: CMNS needs critique, and it’s not easy to come by, so I encourage it.

Because there are now several posts and pages relating to Shanahan, I’m creating a Shanahan category and will be applying it. This post is a review of his LENR Forum comment. I did not make that comment, Zeus46 did. If Shanahan had difficulty distinguishing Zeus46’s comments from mine, Zeus46 did link here.

ABD quoted me and wrote:

KS wrote: There are 38 references listed. 3 of them refer to the ‘general rejection’ of LENR by mainstream science (they refer to the books by Huizenga, Taubes, and Park).

ABD: The books are references for the statement: “The special condition required to cause the LENR reaction is difficult to create. This difficulty has encouraged general rejection by conventional science [13-15] and has slowed understanding.”

My response: What’s yer point???

Shanahan takes every discussion as a debate, and in a debate, some will never concede fact alleged by the other side. It will either be wrong or “beside the point.” Sometimes I have points to make, other times I simply note, for the reader, fact. What I wrote was simple, verifiable fact, and if there is no point to simple, verifiable fact, then there is no possibility of communication. Consensus can be built from fact.

What, indeed, is the point of Shanahan’s asking “What’s yer point???” ??? Someone seeking straight and clear communication would have written nothing or would have written something like “Yes.” Not what he wrote. This has been going on for years.

ABD quoted me and wrote:

KS wrote: If you look closely at Figure 2, you will see the He/Heat values exceed the theoretical amount in some cases.

ABD: No. In one case, the value is on the theoretical amount, but something must be understood about this data. If what is being calculated is the heat/helium ratio, and if the actual ratio is a constant, experimental error will cause greater deviation from the actual ratio if the produced heat (or helium) are at low values. I have never seen the data presented with careful consideration of error bars as they affect the ratio.

My response: As I put in my original disclaimer, I did this review quickly, and Abd has found a minor error I have made. Let me correct that now.

Does he correct the error? (Yes, below.) “I thank Abd for noticing my error.” Shanahan doesn’t do apologies, not that I’ve ever seen. And then he, has, in the past, gone on to assert that it doesn’t matter, because New Reason He Was Really Right. He doesn’t break that pattern here.

(On LENR Forum, authors may edit their posts, so he could actually fix the error. He could use strike-through to avoid making the comments of others unintelligible. He could point to the correction, etc. As of this writing, the original post has not been touched. When I see an error like that, I immediately address it. In a recent post here, I’d made a huge mistake. When it was pointed out, I immediately unpublished that post, returning it to draft status, responded to the user who had pointed out the error, and created a new post documenting what I’d done. And then I fixed the error, and rewrote the post that had depended on it. Shanahan seems to have no concept of using these fora to develop scientific or social consensus. Will he ever turn around?)

What is funny is that once again, correcting my error places Storms in an even worse light.

Once again, we can see the polemic intent. It is about good light and bad light. Does the light change reality? Bad light on something would be bad interpretation. From my own training, what is highly likely is that Shanahan will careen from one error to another, because the error of others is a matter of certainty to him. He won’t recognize nuances, and what occurs to him as a result of his world-view he will think of as plain and simple evidence or … proof. What does he come up with?

Storms’ Figure 2 is an alternative presentation of the ‘heat/helium correlation’ idea. He plots the number of experiments obtaining a value for the number of He atoms/watt-sec that lies within a specified range versus the mid-range value for that ‘bin’, in a typical histogram approach.

Yes.

He overlays a Gaussian fit to the data as a curve on the graph. The number of experiments obtaining a He/heat value in the selected range is indicated by a pink box on the plot. Storms also adds a vertical black line on the plot, and labels it “D+D=He”. I observed pink boxes at larger values than the black line.

Here is the plot:

My mistake was to imagine Storms was using the data from his book’s Figure 47, which does show 1 point above the theoretical line and to assume he’d added a couple more (which would be expected based on prior data characteristics). In fact there are several pink boxes at zero values and most are above the black line. Only 1 lies below. So, my mistake, Storms does NOT show any positive values above the theoretical line.

That wasn’t the only mistake, the imagination didn’t fit what was in front of him. Shanahan, as well, knew that this was not the data from the 2007 book, because there were more data points. Yes, he wrote quickly and without caution.

So, I have to ask, what happened to the data point from Figure 47 that was well above the theoretical line? Apparently, without telling anyone, Storms has rejected that datum.

He does tell us in his formally published paper. And I pointed to this. In correlation studies (and that original figure 47 was a correlation study) one will report all data. In attempting to determine a ratio, one may eliminate clear outliers. I discussed all this, and Shanahan starts out responding as if he has never seen any of this. He is reactive and attached to his point of view, which boils down to “I’m right and they are wrong.” Does he go any further than that?

But that radically alters the interpretation of Figure 2. As I noted in other comments, that one datum alters the estimated standard deviation such that the 3 sigma spread encompasses the 0 line as well as going well over the theoretical line. It also swings the average up a bit. If you clip it out, you get a radically different picture, i.e. supposedly ‘all’ data points are now below theoretical (and we (meaning Storms and other CFers) have an ‘explanation’ for that). In my prior comments on Figure 47 from Storms’ book, I discussed why clipping out that high value was an illegitimate thing to do.

Miles reported it. The purpose of Storms’ Figure 47 has been ignored; it appears to me that it was an attempt to show that the ratio settled as the reported energy (or average power for the collection period, similar) increased. As mentioned above, in a correlation study, cherry-picking results is very dangerous. Miles did not do that. He also has zero-heat and zero-helium results (and three outliers of a different kind, experiments where reported heat was significant, but no significant helium was found). All results are part of Mile’s full consideration. Shanahan almost entirely ignores all this.

Storms’ Figure 47, nor his values on the next page, do not consider the 0/0 or 0/energy values. However, that next page does show the “flyer,” and has a note on it: “eliminated from average.”

So of course Storms looks “worse” in this light. The “light” is what Shanahan sees with his eyes closed. He may again excuse his “errors” — if he does admit error here, I suspect he might not — by his having written quickly, just dealing with one paragraph at a time.

So let’s see if he straightens up and flies right:

The functional difference is that including it leads to the conclusion the experiments are too imprecise to use in making the ‘desired’ conclusion. Excluding it means you can use the data to support the LENR idea. But which of these is forcing the data to a predefined conclusion do you think?

What conclusion? And is it “desired” or observed?

Data like this was enough to inspire about $12 million in funding for a project with the first declared purpose being to confirm the heat/helium correlation with greater precision. That’s the only “conclusion” that I care about, long-term. Long ago, within my first year of starting to again look at LENR evidence, I personally concluded that there was much stronger evidence, with a replicable and confirmed experiment behind it, than was commonly being represented — and that includes representation by the CMNS community. There are historical causes for this that I won’t go into here.

It is SOP to exclude an obvious outlier, when calculating a data correspondence, i.e., a ratio, particularly where the outlier has less intrinsic precision than the other values. Whenever this is done, it should properly be reported; it is unfortunately common for LENR reports to only show “positive” results, perhaps because some workers might do dozens of experiments and only see signs of LENR in a few. That is a systemic error in the field that I’ve been working to correct. Some researchers think it is preposterous to report all that “useless junk,” but that is the kind of thinking that has inhibited the acceptance of LENR, allowing vague claims to seem plausible that it’s all “file drawer effect.”

Abd said: “I have never seen the data presented with careful consideration of error bars as they affect the ratio.” – Perhaps, but I have discussed just that before, and now again in summary. Obviously Abd reads what I write, but apparently very selectively (which is typical of people looking to discredit something but not seeking to understand).

And Shanahan’s response here shows how he understands what I write, which is apparently very little. He does not show evidence of my reading “selectively,” yet proceeds to draw conclusions from his own imagination.

He apparently agrees with me, makes the point that he’s said this before (and he may have, I don’t know). I was writing about what was in front of me, his comments, and commenting, mentioning a problem that I know, and if he were interested in the development of consensus, he’d acknowledge the possible agreement. But somehow he converts this to an intention to discredit him.

Rather, my goal is to separate the wheat from the chaff. What is useful about Shanahan’s commentary? As I think I pointed out, few are paying any attention to him any more. The attention he is getting on LENR Forum and here is almost the entire sum of it. As far as we know, he is not submitting critiques of published papers to journals, nor is he writing and submitting original work or reviews. He is more or less, now, confined to complaining about how he has not been accepted, while continuing to display the personality traits that suppress consideration in the real world.

ABD quoted me and wrote:

KS wrote: I have previously commented in this forum on the related Figure from Storms book, which only had 13 numbers on it rather than 17, where I noted that the spread in the data indicates the precision of this measurement is too poor to allow one to make the conclusions Storms does. This hasn’t changed by the addition of 4 points.

From his notice of 17 rather than 13, Shanahan could have realized that this wasn’t the same data. Likewise what Storms writes about “four independent laboratories,” whereas Figure 47 reported from two. What conclusions? I infer several possibilities from this, one of which is that Shanahan is not truly familiar with the evidence. It can be tricky to remember stuff if you believe it is all bogus, it tends to blur into one solid mass of Wrong. (This is an aspect of how belief undermines clear understanding.)

From the Storms paper under review:

This ratio has been measured 17 times by four independent laboratories, the result of which is plotted in Figure 2. This collection shows a range of values with an expected amount of random scatter. Of considerable importance, the average value is equal to about 50% of the value expected to result from d-d fusion. This difference is thought to result because some helium would be retained by the palladium in which the LENR reaction occurred. When efforts were made to remove all the trapped helium from the palladium, the expected value for d-d fusion was obtained [33].

Figure 2 : Summary of 17 measurements of both helium and energy production during the same study [32]. Superimposed on the distribution of values is a fit to the Gaussian error function. The fit is typical of an expected amount of random error being present in the measurements. The value for this ratio resulting from deuterium-deuterium (d-d) fusion is known to be 23.8 MeV for each nucleus of helium made.

Unfortunately, ref 32 is to a Storms paper that does not contain support for the caption. Decent journal editing would have caught this. I have seen the histogram before, but couldn’t find it easily (as I write this, I still haven’t found it); but I was able, without much difficulty, to find the data, given in Storms Current Science paper, which I cited. It is also in his 2014 book.

ABD: Shanahan doesn’t know what he’s looking at. The “Storms book” he is referring to is Storms (2007). Figure 47 in that book is a plot of helium/heat vs excess power, for 13 measurements from two sources: Miles and Bush & Lagowski. The Miles data is more scattered than the Bush data. Miles includes one value with the lowest heat (20 mW). The associated helium measurement generates a helium/heat value that is an obvious outlier.

This newer histogram I think is from data in Storms book (2014), The Explanation of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction. Table 9 (p. 42) is a summary of values. There are 19 values. It looks like Storms has omitted one value (2.4 x 10^11 He/W-sec) as “sonic” (Stringham), one as an outlier (4.4), and maybe one as “gas loading,” (McKubre, Case), then perhaps has added one. Or maybe he left in the Case value (2.0).

My response: “Shanahan doesn’t know what he’s looking at.” – Really? Really??

Really, really, and literally really. Truthfully and on clear evidence. He didn’t know, and has acknowledged that he thought this was from Storms (2007), when it obviously was not. An error. Small or otherwise.

All-too-common interpretive principle: Your errors are fatal, demonstrating ignorance and stupidity and worse, whereas mine are minor, trival, of no consequence, and I was right anyway.

“I think”? Yes, Abd is right, you have to guess at where it comes from.

Well, I did better than guess, but it’s not a certainty, merely very likely, since Storms has published this data at least twice, once in his book (2014), which Shanahan might not have, and once in Current Science in 2015, with the appropriately named Introduction to the main experimental findings of the LENR field — and this was cited in my response.

This was an actual peer-reviewed paper. I know that my own paper’s review in that Special Section of Current Science was real (and even initially hostile!), and also the copy editing was strong. That’s a real (and venerable) multidisciplinary scientific journal. If Shanahan thinks that nonsense is being published there, he could certainly write a response. If they wouldn’t publish it, I would, I assume, working with him to clean it up — or THH could assist, etc. — arrange publication anyway, but I doubt that Shanahan has tried. (We could help him clean it up, and what he submitted to Current Science would be his choice, not ours. I.e., I would advise, with help from anyone Shanahan was willing to allow to see the draft.

As I noted in my initial review, the referencing on this paper stinks. Where the data comes from is actually not specified, so you can’t check it.

That’s correct that it is not specified, but it is possible to check it.

The citation error is one item on the pile of indications that this was a predatory publisher. I’ve seen this happening to more than one older researcher. Takahashi, a genuine scientist, not marginal, published in a predatory publisher’s journal.

However, what’s the topic here? Formally, on LENR Forum, the topic was the paper. So, granted, it’s poorly referenced. What else can we agree upon? Shanahan wrote, however, about the underlying data, and it’s easy to find the substantially identical underlying data. I did not actually research this all the way. The Current Science paper gives references for all the measured values. With only a little work, someone could reproduce the histogram with full references. How important is it?

From my point of view, all this is likely to become relatively obsolete soon. The standing evidence — which Storms does show, as did I in my own paper — was quite enough to justify significant investment in research funding. Shanahan is, too often, focused on being right, whereas the real world is focused on exploring science and especially mysteries with possible major real-world consequences.

How much attention should be given to Shanahan’s CCS and ATER ideas? Basically, unexpected recombination, the major core of this, should be always be considered with the FP Heat Effect, and, where practical, measured (which can include finding upper bounds). That has already been done to some extent (Shanahan seems to mostly ignore this, but he’s welcome to correct me or request confirmation).

Abd makes some interesting guesses about where it comes from, and most importantly, he notes that Storms’ is picking and choosing what to look at. A clear recipe for making the data say what you want it to say, instead of what it actually says.

Again, he could be agreeing. However, I’ve personally gone through the exercise of looking at what data to present in a summary chart. I wanted to present it all, in fact, all the data we have. I came to realize that this was a monumental task, with hosts of data selection problems. Many of the data points are isolated measurements. Then there are variations in experimental technique. I don’t think that Storms selected the data to show based on desired outcome. On the other hand, Storms does not state how he picked what studies to show.

His 2014 book lists 30 helium studies. Many of them provide no clear information about the heat/helium ratio. Many are obviously flawed in different ways. Post-hoc analysis of correlation studies is problematic; it is primarily useful for suggesting further research. Even the Miles work, which is outstanding for this, was not designed in full anticipation of the importance, and was not uniform experimentally. Miles did not set up a full protocol for rigorous correlation study. Close, but not completely. For example, what do you do if some incident creates possible major error in measuring heat? Miles varied the cathode material and created two outliers (that don’t show in the Storms chart). Apparent heat but no apparent helium. Miles later wanted to study this, I think, submitting a proposal to the DoE, which was denied. I suspect that the importance wasn’t established, and investigating Pd-Ce cathodes remains a possible avenue for research. I do not recommend at this point that the Texas Tech/ENEA collaboration complicate the work by trying to explore outliers. Yet. First things first! Keep it as simple as possible, as few variables as possible.

Right now, I’m only considering, and only a little, Shanahan’s response. A deeper study would list all helium studies and set up some selection criteria in an attempt to generate more objective data for a histogram. It might look at the sources for the histogram and compare these studies with the entire body of studies. Until then, my impression is that Storms’ selection criteria were reasonable; particularly if we understand that what is really needed is more precise confirmation, that this does not shut the book, close the case, lead to a final conclusion, and for what purpose would we even think this?

I notice that Shanahan’s critique here is ad hoc and without foundation. He is essentially alleging cherry-picking without showing any evidence for it. The single outlier is acknowledged by Storms in the prior publications. The failure in sourcing is really a journal failure, my opinion; for when a paper is submitted by a scientist in his eighties, I don’t expect perfection. AStorms did not ask me — or anyone, as far as I know — about the wisdom of that submission there. I’ve advised him against spinning his wheels with useless and unfocused repetition of speculations, his “explanations.” He doesn’t like it. So I’ve mostly stopped.

ABD quoted me and wrote:

KS wrote:

This newer histogram I think is from data in Storms book (2014), The Explanation of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction. Table 9 (p. 42) is a summary of values. There are 19 values. It looks like Storms has omitted one value (2.4 x 10^11 He/W-sec) as “sonic” (Stringham), one as an outlier (4.4), and maybe one as “gas loading,” (McKubre, Case), then perhaps has added one. Or maybe he left in the Case value (2.0).

ABD: It’s been confirmed. Maybe Shanahan should actually read my paper. After all, I cited his JEM Letter. It is not a “hand-waving” argument, but, obviously, this cried out for more extensive confirmation with increased precision. And so, I’m happy to say, that work has been funded and is under way. And they will do anodic erosion, I’m told, to test what is apparent from the two studies that did it (McKubre and Apicella et al, see my paper for references). These are the two studies where dissolving the surface of the cathode took the helium level up to the full theoretical value, within experimental error. Two other Apicella (Violante) measurements did not use anodic erosion, and results were at about 60% of the theoretical.

My response: The quote attributed to me is just what Abd wrote immediately above. Cut-and-paste malfunction. If Abd will actually use my quote I might be able to respond.

Apparently Shanahan did not look at my original comment. It’s here, as cited by Zeus46: Reviewing Shanahan reviewing Storms. What is quotation of Shanahan and what is my comment is clear there, I hope. Zeus46 translated the blog format to LF format and incorrectly set up quotations. It was not exactly a cut-and-paste error, but a reformatting error. Shanahan could easily have responded to what was written; after all, he knows what he wrote and then what I wrote, and he could be even more clear if he actually followed Zeus46’s link and read the original.

ABD quoted me and wrote:

KS wrote: Exactly so. So one shouldn’t try to work with these numbers until they are shown to be free of the errors Storms points out, which hasn’t happened.

ABD: Shanahan ignores that correlation can show relationships in noisy data. (This is routine in medicine!) Leakage, quite simply, doesn’t explain the experimental evidence. It could have had an effect on some individual measurements. No, we were not going to wait for “error-free” measurements, but rather how to proceed was obvious: the data shows quite adequate evidence to justify funding further research to confirm these results, and this is a replicable experiment, even if heat, by itself, is not reliable. The variability creates natural experimental controls.

My response: “Shanahan ignores…” No, I don’t. But Abd ignores the point that correlations derived from fictitious data (excess heat is likely not real) are worthless. For the record, I have been using statistics for many years, and Abd has added nothing to my knowledge base.

And I can see here — and, I’m sure, many others who read this can also see — the problem.

First of all, “fictitious data” is not defined. Shanahan is not actually talking about fiction, i.e., made-up, invented data, as distinct from the results of actual measurements (and calculations from measurements). Correlation is how we distinguish random variation from systematic, causally connected variation. What the heat/helium data shows is correlation, which can be quantified. The quantification shows a high probability that the data is not random.

(Storms uses that data to show the kind of variation typical of experimental data which is, by the nature of the work, approximate, not fully precise.)

There is, then, likely, a causal connection. This, in itself, does not show “nuclear,” only that there is likely some common cause.

Shanahan, when he says that the data is “fictitious,” is actually stating, with remarkable lack of sophistication, that because the heat data might be non-nuclear in nature (his own theory), it’s fictitious, not “real.” That’s preposterous. It’s real, that is, there is actually an anomaly, or Shanahan’s entire publication history is bogus. He is simply claiming that the anomaly is not nuclear in nature. Not “real nuclear” heat. But real heat, in some cases, caused by unexpected recombination, or … a real measurement anomaly, systematic, caused by some kind of calibration constant shift, perhaps caused by heat being generated in a place different from expectation or calibration.

This runs into many problems that he glosses over, but one at a time. Cold fusion researchers have studied anomalous heat, it is often called by a neutral name, like the Anomalous Heat Effect. Shanahan agrees there is an AHE. He claims it is due to unexpected recombination or sometimes, perhaps, other causes.

Great, so far. Now, in some studies, there was a search for other results, measurement of tritium, neutrons, transmutations, and other possible correlated conditions, i.e., material, current density, etc., and in particular, and with the most interesting results, helium evolution (generally in the gas phase in electrochemical experiments, but also some other study).

Helium, of course, could, in some experiments, be the result of leakage. That’s been the standard objection for years. However, in some experiments, helium levels rose above ambient. Still, someone might suggest that local helium was high because of nearby experiments releasing helium.

However, would we expect, then, that heat and helium would have strong correlation or weak correlation? If a correlation is proposed, what would be a plausible explanation for it, and how could this be tested? Have those tests already been done? If not, is it possible to suggest that there be tests for this? Is it plausible enough to justify spending research dollars on it?

Shanahan is clearly rejecting the significance of correlation.

“Leakage, quite simply, doesn’t explain the experimental evidence. It could have had an effect on some individual measurements.” – And it certainly does. But in the ATER/CCS proposed mechanism there is a way to get increasing He signals in cells that show apparent excess heat. You all will also note that Abd does not respond to my specification that lab He concentrations need to be reported. Another thing he conveniently ignores.

I’ve made the same suggestion. I don’t ignore this. Once one is arranging many helium measurements, background helium should be routinely measured. However, Shanahan refuses to recognize the infinite regress he is creating. Some local anomalous helium would be very unlikely to correlate with heat. It would contaminate controls as readily as experimental heat-producing cells. Shanahan here is not being specific; he is assuming that increased heat production represents some major difference in cell behavior. In fact, it’s typically only a few degrees C in temperature, and cells with high heat may actually be at a lower temperature, it depends on experimental details.

And then how likely is it that the ratio ends up roughly on the money for deuterium conversion to helium? With reasonable consistency, over many experiments with multiple research groups? The work that it takes to obtain the AHE and the work that it takes to collect precise helium samples is quite different. The sampling with Miles, at least, was done blind. And Miles did measure background helium, and also studied leakage, quantified it.

“the data shows quite adequate evidence” – As I noted, that is true only if you start dropping out data that causes that conclusion to not be true. That’s bad science.

Shanahan is quoting out of context. “Adequate” had a specific referent, which Shanahan ignores. Adequate to justify new and substantial funding to test the hypothesis. What data? What conclusion? Shanahan is struggling with ghosts, cobwebs in his mind. Must be frustrating.

“The variability creates natural experimental controls.” – What? That makes no sense.

No sense to Shanahan, demonstrating that he is lacking in sense. This is really obvious, so obvious that I’m tempted not to explain it unless someone asks. Okay, I’ll say this much, though I’ve said it many, many times.

What happens with FP Heat Effect experiments is that researchers will make a series of cells as identical to each other as reasonably possible. Further, with heat/helium, the same cell is observed for heat and gases are sampled for helium. With different cells, but ostensibly identical, the only clear variation is the amount of heat, so “dead cells” are controls. What is different about a dead cell vs one showing anomalous heat. This is basic science, reducing variables as much as possible.

When Miles reports 33 observations of heat and helium, with 12 showing no heat and no helium, and 21 showing heat (and 18 showing significant helium), that is not 33 different cells, it is a smaller number, with multiple samples of gas taken with heat measured (and averaged) for the gas collection period.

Unfortunately, not all the cells were identical. However, the single-cell results, showing helium varying with average heat in a single collection period, are self-controls of a kind, because the cell is identical. To discuss this further would require very detailed analysis of the Miles work.

That Shanahan doesn’t see the idea shows that he has never deeply considered these reports, which go back to 1991. He looks at them enough to find what he thinks a vulnerability and takes a potshot. It gets old.

If THH here wants to assist looking more deeply at Shanahan’s claims, great, or if anyone else wants to do that, I’ll support it. THH has already started some of this.

ABD quoted me and wrote:

KS wrote: I published a consistent, non-nuclear explanation of apparent excess energy signals, but of course Storms refuses to recognize this.

ABD: Shanahan expects Storms to “recognize” Shanahan’s explanation as “consistent” with the evidence Storms knows well, when Shanahan, with obviously less experience, does not recognize Storms’ opinions, and merely asserts his own as valid?

My response: Read carefully here folks. Abd is pulling a fast one. He implies I ignore Storms’ opinions/conclusions. I don’t, I provide an alternative. I do not assert it is valid, I assert it has the potential to be valid. Like all proposed mechanisms, it must be confirmed experimentally, but that will never happen when the people who can do so refuse to accept it and instead resort to falsified representations of it to justify ignoring it. Abd’s response above is a veiled ‘call to authority’ (“Storms is the authority and Shanahan isn’t, so believe Storms”) which is recognized as an invalid logical technique, often used to intimidate others into silence. It has no inherent truth value.

I have not said “believe Storms,” and on this issue, in particular, I do not depend on Storms for anything (other than I specifically cited in my own paper).

In fact, I encouraged Storms to write in more detail about heat/helium and he actually wrote a paper on it and submitted it to Naturwissenschaften. They came back and requested a general review of cold fusion. I regret that, in fact, because a general review will cover a vast territory whereas cold fusion needs focus on narrow specifics, confirmed results, and especially the clearest and most widely confirmed.

Storms has made errors in his heat/helium publications and I have pointed them out.

My point was that Shanahan appears to expect Storms to recognize his critiques, when Storms has addressed them — at least some of them, and Shanahan has presented a bit of a moving target — years ago and considers the matter resolved. Shanahan uses Storms lack of continued consideration as if it were proof of Storms’ scientific bogosity.

There is a far better approach, that could work to move beyond the limitations that Shanahan experiences, but it seems he is not interested. He prefers to complain about others. And if this isn’t true, he’s quite welcome to demonstrate otherwise. Starting here and now.

At this point I can’t tell if this is Abd or Zeus46 writing, but whoever it is wrote:

“Shanahan’s views are idiosyncratic and isolated, and he has neither undertaken experimental work himself, nor managed to convince any experimentalist to test his ideas. To the electrochemists involved with LENR, his views are preposterous, his mechanism radically unexpected.

I wrote that, and all Shanahan needed to do to identify this would have been to follow the link in Zeus46’s post. He calls it the “full monty.” I.e., the “real deal.”

Yes, I’m sure that response is frustrating. After all, LENR is anomalous, unexpected. However … Shanahan’s explanations are, generally, a pile of alternate assumptions, chosen ad hoc, and his claim is that they have been inadequately considered, but who decides what is adequate and what is not? Shanahan?”

But these paragraphs are nothing but CF fanatic fantasies. There’s nothing in them worth responding to.

“Who decides what is adequate and what is not” is a question, not a fantasy. I then proposed a possible answer: Shanahan. What does Shanahan think? How does he assess this?

I proposed a practical standard: funding decisions. It’s enough if it is funded, not if it is not.

Nowhere in all this does Shanahan point to any “fantasy.”

He is fighting his own ghosts, wasting his own life. It’s quite common, and this has almost nothing to do with cold fusion, itself. It’s a people thing, and that’s my primary interest: people. Not cold fusion, that’s just something that I happened to learn about, for better or worse.

Let’s just remove the outliers

Second of the series of posts I promised on the He/excess heat correlation debate, as noted by Shanahan and Lomax. And this one is a little bit more interesting. Still, I’m going to examine the many issues here one by one, so if you expect a complete summary of the evidence from this post or the ones that follow you will be disappointed.

Lomax here:

[Quoting Shanahan in italics] On the other hand, the energy/helium ratio does not have this problem. The independent errors in the He and power measurements are unlikely to combine and create a consistent value for this ratio unless the helium and energy both resulted from the same nuclear reaction.

Yes. Very unlikely, in fact. On the order of one chance in a million, or more.

As I have noted the value is not consistent, thus the quoted statement is nonsense.

The value is consistent within experimental error.

There is much more of interest in these comments than might first appear.

Continue reading “Let’s just remove the outliers”

Minds open brains not falling out?

First of a sequence of comments on Lomax’s recent blog here on Shanahan’s review of Storms posted in LENR Forum.

Lomax writes:

Ah, Shahanan, obsessed with proof, lost science somewhere back. Science is about evidence, and testing evidence, not proof, and when our personal reactions colour how we weigh evidence, we can find ourselves way out on a limb. I’m interested in evidence supporting funding for research, and it is not necessary that anything be “proven,” but we do look at game theory and probabilities, etc.

I agree with Lomax’s second statement here. Science is exactly about weighing evidence. And I understand the explicitly acknowledged bias: Lomax wants more research in this area. I disagree with the statement that “Shanahan is obsessed with proof”. It would be accurate to say that Shanahan, both implicitly and explicitly, is looking for a much higher standard of evidence than Lomax. There is no proof in science but when evidence reaches an amount that overwhelms prior probabilities we think something is probably true. 99.99% and we call it proof. The numbers are arbitrary – some would set the bar to 99.9999% but this does not matter much because of the exponential way that probabilities combine.

Let us see in detail how this works. Continue reading “Minds open brains not falling out?”

Reviewing Shanahan reviewing Storms

A New Source of Energy using Low-Energy Fusion of Hydrogen

On LENR Forum, Alainco posted an abstract and link to a new Storms article on LENR. Kirk Shanahan promptly reviewed it. This post will study the Shanahan review. It is possible that we will review the article itself more intensely. But first, a little on the journal itself. Continue reading “Reviewing Shanahan reviewing Storms”

If I’m stupid, it’s your fault

See It was an itsy-bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot error and Shanahan’s Folly, in Color, for some Shanahan sniffling and shuffling, but today I see Krivit making the usual ass of himself, even more obviously. As described before, Krivit asked Shanahan if he could explain a plot, and this is it:

Red and blue lines are from Krivit, the underlying chart is from this paper copied to NET, copied here as fair use for purposes of critique, as are other brief excerpts.

Ask Krivit notes (and acknowledges), Shanahan wrote a relatively thorough response. It’s one of the best pieces of writing I’ve seen from Shanahan. He does give an explanation for the apparent anomaly, but obviously Krivit doesn’t understand it, so he changed the title of the post from “Kirk Shanahan, Can You Explain This?” to add “(He Couldn’t)”

Krivit was a wanna-be science journalist, but he ended up imagining himself to be expert, and commonly inserts his own judgments as if they are fact. “He couldn’t” obviously has a missing fact, that is, the standard of success in explanation: Krivit himself. If Krivit understands, then it has been explained. If he does not, not, and this could be interesting: obviously, Shanahan failed to communicate the explanation to Krivit (if we assume Krivit is not simply lying, and I do assume that). My headline here is a stupid, disempowering stand, that blames others for my own ignorance, but the empowering stand for a writer is to, in fact, take responsibility for the failure. If you don’t understand what I’m attempting to communicate, that’s my deficiency.

On the other hand, most LENR scientists have stopped talking with Krivit, because he has so often twisted what they write like this.

Krivit presents Shanahan’s “attempted” explanation, so I will quote it here, adding comments and links as may be helfpul. However, Krivit also omitted part of the explanation, believing it irrelevant. Since he doesn’t understand, his assessment of relevance may be defective. Shanahan covers this on LENR Forum. I will restore those paragraphs. I also add Krivit’s comments.

1. First a recap.  The Figure you chose to present is the first figure from F&P’s 1993 paper on their calorimetric method.  It’s overall notable feature is the saw-tooth shape it takes, on a 1-day period.  This is due to the use of an open cell which allows electrolysis gases to escape and thus the liquid level in the electrolysis cell drops.  This changes the electrolyte concentration, which changes the cell resistance, which changes the power deposited via the standard Ohm’s Law relations, V= I*R and P=V*I (which gives P=I^2*R).  On a periodic basis, F&P add makeup D2O to the cell, which reverses the concentration changes thus ‘resetting’ the resistance and voltage related curves.

This appears to be completely correct and accurate. In this case, unlike some Pons and Fleischmann plots, there are no calibration pulses, where a small amount of power is injected through a calibration resistor to test the cell response to “excess power.” We are only seeing, in the sawtooth behavior, the effect of abruptly adding pure D2O.

Krivit: Paragraph 1: I am in agreement with your description of the cell behavior as reflected in the sawtooth pattern. We are both aware that that is a normal condition of electrolyte replenishment. As we both know, the reported anomaly is the overall steady trend of the temperature rise, concurrent with the overall trend of the power decrease.

Voltage, not power, though, in fact, because of the constant current, input voltage will be proportional to power. Krivit calls this an “anomaly,” which simply means something unexplained. It seems that Krivit believes that temperature should vary with power, which it would with a purely resistive heater. This cell isn’t that.

2. Note that Ohm’s Law is for an ‘ideal’ case, and the real world rarely behaves perfectly ideally, especially at the less than 1% level.  So we expect some level of deviation from ideal when we look at the situation closely. However, just looking at the temperature plot we can easily see that the temperature excursions in the Figure change on Day 5.  I estimate the drop on Day 3 was 0.6 degrees, Day 4 was 0.7, Day 5 was 0.4 and Day 6 was 0.3 (although it may be larger if it happened to be cut off).  This indicates some significant change (may have) occurred between the first 2 and second 2 day periods.  It is important to understand the scale we are discussing here.  These deviations represent maximally a (100*0.7/303=) 0.23% change.  This is extremely small and therefore _very_ difficult to pin to a given cause.

Again, this appears accurate. Shanahan is looking at what was presented and noting various characteristics that might possibly be relevant. He is proceeding here as a scientific skeptic would proceed. For a fuller analysis, we’d actually want to see the data itself, and to study the source paper more deeply. What is the temperature precision? The current is constant, so we would expect, absent a chemical anomaly, loss of D2O as deuterium and oxygen gas to be constant, but if there is some level of recombination, that loss would be reduced, and so the replacement addition would be less, assuming it is replaced to restore the same level.

Krivit: Paragraph 2: This is a granular analysis of the daily temperature changes. I do not see any explanation for the anomaly in this paragraph.

It’s related; in any case, Shanahan is approaching this as scientist, when it seems Krivit is expecting polemic. This gets very clear in the next paragraph.

3. I also note that the voltage drops follow a slightly different pattern.  I estimate the drops are 0.1, .04, .04, .02 V. The first drop may be artificially influenced by the fact that it seems to be the very beginning of the recorded data. However, the break noted with the temperatures does not occur in the voltages, instead the break  may be on the next day, but more data would be needed to confirm that.  Thus we are seeing either natural variation or process lags affecting the temporal correlation of the data.

Well, temporal correlation is quite obvious. So far, Shanahan has not come to an explanation for the trend, but he is, again, proceeding as a scientist and a genuine skeptic. (For a pseudoskeptic, it is Verdict first (The explanation! Bogus!) and Trial later (then presented as proof rather than as investigation).

Paragraph 3: This is a granular analysis of the daily voltage changes. I note your use of the unconfident phrase “may be” twice. I do not see any explanation for the anomaly in this paragraph.

Shanahan appropriately uses “may be” to refer to speculations which may or may not be relevant. Krivit is looking for something that no scientist would give him, who is actually practicing science. We do not know the ultimate explanation of what Pons and Fleischmann reported here, so confidence, the kind of certainty Krivit is looking for, would only be a mark of foolishness.

4. I also note that in the last day’s voltage trace there is a ‘glitch’ where the voltage take a dip and changes to a new level with no corresponding change in cell temp.  This is a ‘fact of the data’ which indicates there are things that can affect the voltage but not the temperature, which violates our idea of the ideal Ohmic Law case.  But we expected that because we are dealing with such small changes.

This is very speculative. I don’t like to look at data at the termination, maybe they simply shut off the experiment at that point, and there is, I see, a small voltage rise, close to noise. This tells us less than Shanahn implies. The variation in magnitude of the voltage rise, however, does lead to some reasonable suspicion and wonder as to what is going on. At first glance, it appears correlated with the variation in temperature rise. Both of those would be correlated with the amount of make-up heavy water added to restore level.

Krivit: Paragraph 4: You mention what you call a glitch, in the last day’s voltage trace. It is difficult for me to see what you are referring to, though I do note again, that you are using conditional language when you write that there are things that “can affect” voltage. So this paragraph, as well, does not appear to provide any explanation for the anomaly. Also in this paragraph, you appear to suggest that there are more-ideal cases of Ohm’s law and less-ideal cases. I’m unwilling to consider that Ohm’s law, or any accepted law of science, is situational.

Krivit is flat-out unqualified to write about science. It’s totally obvious here. He is showing that, while he’s been reading reports on cold fusion calorimetry for well over fifteen years, he has not understood them. Krivit has heard it now from Shanahan, actually confirmed by Miles (see below), “Joule heating ” also called “Ohmic heating,” the heating that is the product of current and voltage, is not the only source of heat in an electrolytic cell.

Generally, all “accepted laws of science” are “situational.” We need to understand context to apply them.

To be sure, I also don’t understand what Shanahan was referring to in this paragraph. I don’t see it in the plot. So perhaps Shanahan will explain. (He may comment below, and I’d be happy to give him guest author privileges, as long as it generates value or at least does not cause harm.)

5. Baseline noise is substantially smaller than these numbers, and I can make no comments on anything about it.

Yes. The voltage noise seems to be more than 10 mV. A constant-current power supply (which adjusts voltage to keep the current constant) was apparently set at 400 mA, and those supplies typically have a bandwidth of well in excess of 100 kHz, as I recall. So, assuming precise voltage measurements (which would be normal), there is noise, and I’d want to know how the data was translated to plot points. Bubble noise will cause variations, and these cells are typically bubbling (that is part of the FP approach, to ensure stirring so that temperature is even in the cell). If the data is simply recorded periodically, instead of being smoothed by averaging over an adequate period, it could look noisier than it actually is (bubble noise being reasonably averaged out over a short period). A 10 mV variation in voltage, at the current used, corresponds to 4 mW variation. Fleischmann calorimetry has a reputed precision of 0.1 mW. That uses data from rate of change to compute instantaneous power, rather than waiting for conditions to settle. We are not seeing that here, but we might be seeing the result of it in the reported excess power figures.

Krivit: Paragraph 5: You make a comment here about noise.

What is Krivit’s purpose here? Why did he ask the question? Does he actually want to learn something? I found the comment about noise to be interesting, or at least to raise an issue of interest.

6. Your point in adding the arrows to the Figure seems to be that the voltage is drifting down overall, so power in should be drifting down also (given constant current operation).  Instead the cell temperature seem to be drifting up, perhaps indicating an ‘excess’ or unknown heat source.  F&P report in the Fig. caption that the calculated daily excess heats are 45, 66, 86, and 115 milliwatts.  (I wonder if the latter number is somewhat influenced by the ‘glitch’ or whatever caused it.)  Note that a 45 mW excess heat implies a 0.1125V change (P=V*I, I= constant 0.4A), and we see that the observed voltage changes are too small and in the wrong direction, which would indicate to me that the temperatures are used to compute the supposed excesses.  The derivation of these excess heats requires a calibration equation to be used, and I have commented on some specific flaws of the F&P method and on the fact that it is susceptible to the CCS problem previously.  The F&P methodology lumps _any_ anomaly into the ‘apparent excess heat’ term of the calorimetric equation.  The mistake is to assign _all_ of this term to some LENR.  (This was particularly true for the HAD event claimed in the 1993 paper.)

So Shanahan gives the first explanation, (“excess heat,” or heat of unknown origin). Calculated excess heat is increasing, and with the experimental approach here, excess heat would cause the temperature to rise.

His complaint about assigning all anomalous heat (“apparent excess heat”) to LENR is … off. Basically excess heat means a heat anomaly, and it certainly does not mean “LENR.” That is, absent other evidence, a speculative conclusion, based on circumstantial evidence (unexplained heat). There is no mistake here. Pons and Fleischmann did not call the excess heat LENR and did not mention nuclear reactions.

Shanahan has then, here, identified another possible explanation, his misnamed “CCS” problem. It’s very clear that the name has confused those whom Shanahan might most want to reach: LENR experimentalists. The actual phenomenon that he would be suggesting here is unexpected recombination at the cathode. That is core to Shanahan’s theory as it applies to open cells with this kind of design. It would raise the temperature if it occurs.

LENR researchers claim that the levels of recombination are very low, and a full study of this topic is beyond this relatively brief post. Suffice it to say for now that recombination is a possible explanation, even if it is not proven. (And when we are dealing with anomalies, we cannot reject a hypothesis because it is unexpected. Anomaly means “unexpected.”)

Krivit: Paragraph 6: You analyze the reported daily excess heat measurements as described in the Fleischmann-Pons paper. I was very specific in my question. I challenged you to explain the apparent violation of Ohm’s law. I did not challenge you to explain any reported excess heat measurements or any calorimetry. Readings of cell temperature are not calorimetry, but certainly can be used as part of calorimetry.

Actually, Krivit did not ask that question. He simply asked Shanahan to explain the plot. He thinks a violation of Ohm’s law is apparent. It’s not, for several reasons. For starters, wrong law. Ohm’s law is simply that the current through a conductor is proportional to the voltage across it. The ratio is the conductance, usually expressed by its reciprocal, the resistance.

From the Wikipedia article: “An element (resistor or conductor) that behaves according to Ohm’s law over some operating range is referred to as an ohmic device (or an ohmic resistor) because Ohm’s law and a single value for the resistance suffice to describe the behavior of the device over that range. Ohm’s law holds for circuits containing only resistive elements (no capacitances or inductances) for all forms of driving voltage or current, regardless of whether the driving voltage or current is constant (DC) or time-varying such as AC. At any instant of time Ohm’s law is valid for such circuits.”

An electrolytic cell is not an ohmic device. What is true here is that one might immediately expect that heating in the cell would vary with the input power, but that is only by neglecting other contributions, and what Shanahan is pointing out by pointing out the small levels of the effect is that there are many possible conditions that could affect this.

With his tendentious reaction, Krivit ignores the two answers given in Shanahan’s paragraph, or, more accurately, Shanahan gives a primary answer and then a possible explanation. The primary answer is some anomalous heat. The possible explanation is a recombination anomaly. It is still an anomaly, something unexpected.

7. Using an average cell voltage of 5V and the current of 0.4A as specified in the Figure caption (Pin~=2W), these heats translate to approximately 2.23, 3.3, 4.3, and 7.25% of input.  Miles has reported recombination in his cells on the same order of magnitude.  Thus we would need measures of recombination with accuracy and precision levels on the order of 1% to distinguish if these supposed excess heats are recombination based or not _assuming_ the recombination process does nothing but add heat to the cell.  This may not be true if the recombination is ATER (at-the-electrode-recombination).  As I’ve mentioned in lenr-forum recently, the 6.5% excess reported by Szpak, et al, in 2004 is more likely on the order of 10%, so we need a _much_ better way to measure recombination in order to calculate its contribution to the apparent excess heat.

I think Shanahan may be overestimating the power of his own arguments, from my unverified recollection, but this is simply exploring the recombination hypothesis, which is, in fact, an explanation, and if our concern is possible nuclear heat, then this is a possible non-nuclear explanation for some anomalous heat in some experiments. In quick summary: a non-nuclear artifact, unexpected recombination, and unless recombination is measured, and with some precision, it cannot be ruled out merely because experts say it wouldn’t happen. Data is required. For the future, I hope we look at all this more closely here on CFC.net.

Shanahan has not completely explored this. Generally, at constant current and after the cathode loading reaches equilibrium, there should be constant gas evolution. However, unexpected recombination in an open cell like this, with no recombiner, would lower the amount of gas being released, and therefore the necessary replenishment amount. This is consistent with the decline that can be inferred as an explanation from the voltage jumps. Less added D2O, lower effect.

There would be another effect from salts escaping the cell, entrained in microdroplets, which would cause a long-term trend of increase in voltage, the opposite of what we see.

So the simple explanation here, confirmed by the calorimetry, is that anomalous heat is being released, and then there are two explanations proposed for the anomaly: a LENR anomaly or a recombination anomaly. Shanahan is correct that precise measurement of recombination (which might not happen under all conditions and which, like LENR heat, might be chaotic and not accurately predictable).

Excess nuclear heat will, however, likely be correlated with a nuclear ash (like helium) and excess recombination heat would be correlated with reduction in offgas, so these are testable. It is, again, beyond the scope of this comment to explore that.

Krivit. Paragraph 7: You discuss calorimetry.

Krivit misses that Shanahan discusses ATER, “At The Electrode Recombination,” which is Shanahan’s general theory as applied to this cell. Shanahan points to various possibilities to explain the plot (not the “apparent violation of Ohm’s law,” which was just dumb), but the one that is classic Shanahan is ATER, and, frankly, I see evidence in the plot that he may be correct as to this cell at this time, and no evidence that I’ve noticed so far in the FP article to contradict it.

(Remember, ATER is an anomaly itself, i.e., very much not expected. The mechanism would be oxygen bubbles reaching the cathode, where they would immediately oxidize available deuterium. So when I say that I don’t see anything in the article, I’m being very specific. I am not claiming that this actually happened.)

8. This summarizes what we can get from the Figure.  Let’s consider what else might be going on in addition to electrolysis and electrolyte replenishment.  There are several chemical/physical processes ongoing that are relevant that are often not discussed.  For example:  dissolution of electrode materials and deposition of them elsewhere, entrainment, structural changes in the Pd, isotopic contamination, chemical modification of the electrode surfaces, and probably others I haven’t thought of at this point.

Well, some get rather Rube Goldberg and won’t be considered unless specific evidence pops up.

Krivit: Paragraph 8: You offer random speculations of other activities that might be going on inside the cell.

Indeed he does, though “random” is not necessarily accurate. He was asked to explain a chart, so he is thinking of things that might, under some conditions or others, explain the behavior shown. His answer is directly to the question, but Krivit lives in a fog, steps all over others, impugns the integrity of professional scientists, writes “confident” claims that are utterly bogus, and then concludes that anyone who points this out is a “believer” in something or other nonsense. He needs an editor and psychotherapist. Maybe she’ll come back if he’s really nice. Nah. That almost never happens. Sorry.

But taking responsibility for what one has done, that’s the path to a future worth living into.

9. All except the entrainment issue can result in electrode surface changes which in turn can affect the overvoltage experienced in the cell.  That in turn affects the amount of voltage available to heat the electrolyte.  In other words, I believe the correct, real world equation is Vcell = VOhm + Vtherm + Vover + other.  (You will recall that the F&P calorimetric model only assumes VOhm and Vtherm are important.)  It doesn’t take much change to induce a 0.2-0.5% change in T.  Furthermore most of the significant changing is going to occur in the first few days of cell operation, which is when the Pd electrode is slowly loaded to the high levels typical in an electrochemical setup.  This assumes the observed changes in T come from a change in the electrochemical condition of the cell.  They might just be from changes in the TCs (or thermistors or whatever) from use.

What appears to me, here, is that Shanahan is artificially separating out Vover from the other terms. I have not reviewed this, so I could be off here, rather easily. Shanahan does not explain these terms here, so it is perhaps unsurprising that Krivit doesn’t understand, or if he does, he doesn’t show it.

An obvious departure from Ohm’s law and expected heat from electrolytic power is that some of the power available to the cell, which is the product of total cell voltage and current, ends up as a rate of production of chemical potential energy. The FP paper assumes that gas is being evolved and leaving the cell at a rate that corresponds to the current. It does not consider recombination that I’ve seen.

Krivit: Paragraphs 9-10: You consider entrainment, but you don’t say how this explains the anomaly.

It is a trick question. By definition, an explained anomaly is not an anomaly. Until and unless an explanation, a mechanism, is confirmed through controlled experiment (and with something like this, multiply-confirmed, specifically, not merely generally), a proposals are tentative, and Shanahan’s general position — which I don’t see that he has communicated very effectively — is that there is an anomaly. He merely suggests that it might be non-nuclear. It is still unexpected, and why some prefer to gore the electrochemists rather than the nuclear physicists is a bit of a puzzle to me, except it seems the latter have more money. Feynman thought that the arrogance of physicists was just that, arrogance. Shanahan says that entrainment would be important to ATER, but I don’t see how. Rather, it would be another possible anomaly. Again, perhaps Shanahan will explain this.

10. Entrainment losses would affect the cell by removing the chemicals dissolved in the water.  This results in a concentration change in the electrolyte, which in turn changes the cell resistance.  This doesn’t seem to be much of an issue in this Figure, but it certainly can become important during ATER.

This was, then, off-topic for the question, perhaps. But Shanahan has answered the question, as well as it can be answered, given the known science and status of this work. Excess heat levels as shown here (which is not clear from the plot, by the way) are low enough that we cannot be sure that this is the “Fleischmann-Pons Heat Effect.” The article itself is talking about a much clearer demonstration; the plot is shown as a little piece considered of interest. I call it an “indication.”

The mere miniscule increase in heat over days, vs. a small decrease in voltage, doesn’t show more than that.

[Paragraphs not directly addressing this measurement removed.]

In fact, Shanahan recapped his answer toward the end of what Krivit removed. Obviously, Krivit was not looking for an answer, but, I suspect, to make some kind of point, abusing Shanahan’s good will. Even though he thanks him. Perhaps this is about the Swedish scientist’s comment (see the NET article), which was, ah, not a decent explanation, to say the least. Okay, this is a blog. It was bullshit. I don’t wonder that Krivit wasn’t satisfied. Is there something about the Swedes? (That is not what I’d expect, by the way, I’m just noticing a series of Swedish scientists who have gotten involved with cold fusion who don’t know their fiske from their fysik.

And here are those paragraphs:


I am not an electrochemist so I can be corrected on these points (but not by vacuous hand-waving, only by real data from real studies) but it seems clear to me that the data presented is from a time frame where changes are expected to show up and that the changes observed indicate both correlated effects in T and V as well as uncorrelated ones. All that adds up to the need for replication if one is to draw anything from this type of data, and I note that usually the initial loading period is ignored by most researchers for the same reason I ‘activate’ my Pd samples in my experiments – the initial phases of the research are difficult to control but much easier to control later on when conditions have been stabilized.

To claim the production of excess heat from this data alone is not a reasonable claim. All the processes noted above would allow for slight drifts in the steady state condition due to chemical changes in the electrodes and electrolyte. As I have noted many, many times, a change in steady state means one needs to recalibrate. This is illustrated in Ed Storms’ ICCF8 report on his Pt-Pt work that I used to develop my ATER/CCS proposal by the difference in calibration constants over time. Also, Miles has reported calibration constant variation on the order of 1-2% as well, although it is unclear whether the variation contains systematic character or not (it is expressed as random variation). What is needed (as always) is replication of the effect in such a manner as to demonstrate control over the putative excess heat. To my knowledge, no one has done that yet.

So, those are my quick thoughts on the value of F&P’s Figure 1. Let me wrap this up in a paragraph.

The baseline drift presented in the Figure and interpreted as ‘excess heat’ can easily be interpreted as chemical effects. This is especially true given that the data seems to be from the very first few days of cell operation, where significant changes in the Pd electrode in particular are expected. The magnitudes of the reported excess heats are of the size that might even be attributed to the CF-community-favored electrochemical recombination. It’s not even clear that this drift is not just equipment related. As is usual with reports in this field, more information, and especially more replication, is needed if there is to be any hope of deriving solid conclusions regarding the existence of excess heat from this type of data.”


And then, back to what Krivit quoted:

I readily admit I make mistakes, so if you see one, let me know.  But I believe the preceding to be generically correct.

Kirk Shanahan
Physical Chemist
U.S. Department of Energy, Savannah River National Laboratory

 Krivit responds:

Although you have offered a lot of information, for which I’m grateful, I am unable to locate in your letter any definitive, let alone probable conventional explanation as to why the overall steady trend of increasing heat and decreasing power occurs, violating Ohm’s law, unless there is a source of heat in the cell. The authors of the paper claim that the result provides evidence of a source of heating in the cell. As I understand, you deny that this result provides such evidence.

Shanahan directly answered the question, about as well as it can be answered at this time. He allows “anomalous heat” — which covers the CMNS community common opinion, because this must include the nuclear possibility, then offers an alternate unconventional anomaly, ATER, and then a few miscellaneous minor possibilities.

Krivit is looking for a definitive answer, apparently, and holds on to the idea that the cell may be “violating Ohm’s law,” when it has been explained to him (by two:Shanahan and Miles) that Ohm’s law is inadequate to describe electrolytic cell behavior, because of the chemical shifts. While it may be harmless, much more than Ohm’s law is involved in analyzing electrochemistry. “Ohmic heating” is, as Shanahan pointed out — and as is also well known — is an element of an analysis, not the whole analysis. There is also chemistry and endothermic and exothermic reaction. Generating deuterium and oxygen from heavy water is endothermic. The entry of deuterium into the cathode is exothermic, at least at modest loading. Recombination of oxygen and deuterium is exothermic, whereas release of deuterium from the cathode is endothermic.  Krivit refers to voltage as if it were power, and then as if the heating of the cell would be expected to match this power. Because this cell is constant current, the overall cell input power does vary directly with the voltage. However, only some of this power ends up as heat (and Ohm’s law simply does not cover that).

Actually, Shanahan generally suggests a “source of heating in the cells” (unexpected recombination).  He then presents other explanations as well. If recombination shifts the location of generated heat, this could affect calorimetry, Shahanan calls this Calibration Constant Shift, but that is easily misunderstood, and confused with another phenomenon, shifts in calibration constant from other changes, including thermistor or thermocouple aging (which he mentions). Shanahan did answer the question, albeit mixed with other comments, so Krivit’s “He Couldn’t” was not only rude, but wrong.

Then Krivit answered the paragraphs point-by-point, and I’ve put those comments above.

And then Krivit added, at the end:

This concludes my discussion of this matter with you.

I find this appalling, but it’s what we have come to expect from Krivit, unfortunately. Shanahan wrote a polite attempt to answer Krivit’s question (which did look like a challenge). I’ve experienced Krivit shutting down conversation like that, abruptly, with what, in person, would be socially unacceptable. It’s demanding the “Last Word.”

Krivit also puts up an unfortunate comment from Miles. Miles misunderstands what is happening and thinks, apparently, that the “Ohm’s Law” interpretation belongs to Shanahan, when it was Krivit. Shananan is not a full-blown expert on electrochemistry — like Miles is — but would probably agree with Miles, I certainly don’t see a conflict between them on this issue. And Krivit doesn’t see this, doesn’t understand what is happening right in his own blog, that misunderstanding.

However, one good thing: Krivit’s challenge did move Shanahan to write something decent. I appreciate that. Maybe some good will come out of it. I got to notice the similarity between fysik and fiske, that could be useful.


Update

I intended to give the actual physical law that would appear to be violated, but didn’t. It’s not Ohm’s law, which simply doesn’t apply, the law in question is conservation of energy or the first law of thermodynamics. Hess’s law is related. As to apparent violation, this appears by neglecting the role of gas evolution; unexpected recombination within the cell would cause additional heating. While it is true that this energy comes, ultimately, from input energy, that input energy may be stored in the cell earlier as absorbed deuterium, and this may be later released. The extreme of this would be “heat after death” (HAD), i.e., heat evolved after input power goes to zero, which skeptics have attributed to the “cigarette lighter effect,” see Close.

(And this is not the place to debate HAD, but the cigarette lighter effect as an explanation has some serious problems, notably lack of sufficient oxygen, with flow being, from deuterium release, entirely out of the cell, not allowing oxygen to be sucked back in. This release does increase with temperature, and it is endothermic, overall. It is only net exothermic if recombination occurs.)

(And possible energy storage is why we would be interested to see the full history of cell operation, not just a later period. In the chart in question, we only see data from the third through seventh days, and we do not see data for the initial loading (which should show storage of energy, i.e., endothermy).  The simple-minded Krivit thinking is utterly off-point. Pons and Fleischmann are not standing on this particular result, and show it as a piece of eye candy with a suggestive comment at the beginning of their paper. I do not find, in general, this paper to be particularly convincing without extensive analysis. It is an example of how “simplicity” is subjective. By this time, cold fusion needed an APCO — or lawyers, dealing with public perceptions. Instead, the only professionalism that might have been involved was on the part of the American Physical Society and Robert Park. I would not have suggested that Pons and Fleischmann not publish, but that their publications be reviewed and edited for clear educational argument in the real-world context, not merely scientific accuracy.)

Shanahan’s Folly, in Color

Well, a little color. As covered in It was an itsy-bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot error, Kirk Shanahan digitised a chart from page 87 of Storms, The Science of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction, even though the data was on the next page in Table 7. Ah, well, you do what you need to do.

So, today, I loaded the data in to a spreadsheet, and here it is, ODS, and if you need another format, ask. The first plot shows all the data, and looks like the Storms plot, but with a little extra and without the 23.8 MeV/He line; that is equivalent to about 2.6 x 10^11 He atoms/watt-sec.

Continue reading “Shanahan’s Folly, in Color”

It was an itsy-bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot error

A comment today pointed out a post by kirkshanahan on LENR-Forum.

zeus46 wrote:

KShanahan. What’s that story about the time you were trying to dispute some ‘cold fusion’ findings by showing a non-correlation between two factors, but ballsed up the analysis, and ended up unknowingly proving it? Or something. Abd used to write about it. Never heard your side of it. Maybe something about a horizontal line on a graph?

In my 2010 J. Env. Monitoring paper, there is a slight error in my discussion
of a specific figure. Abd has tried to use that to discredit everything I write
in a ‘throw the baby out with the bathwater’ style. I replied to him here on
lenr-forum, but in brief… Continue reading “It was an itsy-bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot error”