Today I began and completed a review of Akito Takahashi’s presentation on behalf of a collaboration of groups, using the 55 slides made available. Eventually, I hope to see a full paper, which may resolve some ambiguities. Meanwhile, this work shows substantial promise.
This is the first substantial review of mine coming out of ICCF-21, which, I declared, the first day, would be a breakthrough conference.
I was half-way out-of-it for much of the conference, struggling with some health issues, exacerbated by the altitude. I survived. I’m stronger. Yay!
Comments and corrections are invited on the reviews, or on what will become a series of brief summaries.
The title of the presentation: Research Status of Nano-Metal Hydrogen Energy. There are 17 co-authors, affiliated with four universities (Kyushu, Tohoku, Kobe, and Nagoya), and two organizations (Technova and Nissan Motors). Funding was reportedly $1 million US, for October 2015 to October 2017.
This was a major investigation, finding substantial apparent anomalous heat in many experiments, but this work was, in my estimation, exploratory, not designed for clear confirmation of a “lab rat” protocol, which is needed. They came close, however, and, to accomplish that goal, they need do little more than what they have already done, with tighter focus. I don’t like presenting “best results,” from an extensive experimental series, it can create misleading impressions.
The best results were from experiments at elevated temperatures, which requires heating the reactor, which, with the design they used, requires substantial heating power. That is not actually a power input to the reactor, however, and if they can optimize these experiments, as seems quite possible, they appear to be generating sufficient heat to be able to maintain elevated temperature for a reactor designed to do that. (Basically, insulate the reactor and provide heating and cooling as needed, heating for startup and cooling once the reactor reaches break-even — i.e., generating enough heat to compensate for heat losses). The best result was about 25 watts, and they did not complete what I see as possible optimization.
They used differential scanning calorimetry to identify the performance of sample fuel mixtures. I’d been hoping to see this kind of study for quite some time. This work was the clearest and most interesting of the pages in the presentation; what I hope is that they will do much more of that, with many more samples. Then, I hope that they will identify a lab rat (material and protocol) and follow it identically with many trials (or sometimes with a single variation, but there should be many iterations with a single protocol.
They are looking forward to optimization for commercial usage, which I think is just slightly premature. But they are close, assuming that followup can confirm their findings and demonstrate adequate reliability.
It is not necessary that this work be fully reliable, as long as results become statistically predictable, as shown by actual variation in results with careful control of conditions.
Much of the presentation was devoted to Takahashi’s TSC theory, which is interesting in itself, but distracting, in my opinion, from what was most important about this report. The experimental work is consistent with Takahashi theory, but does not require it, and the work was not designed to deeply vet TSC predictions.
Time was wasted in letting us know that if cold fusion can be made practical, it will have a huge impact on society. As if we need to hear that for the n thousandth time. I’ve said that if I see another Rankin diagram, I’d get sick. Well, I didn’t, but be warned. I think there are two of them.
Nevertheless, this is better hot-hydrogen LENR work than I’ve seen anywhere before. I’m hoping they have helium results (I think they might,) which could validate the excess heat measures for deuterium devices.
I’m recommending against trying to scale up to higher power until reliability is nailed.
Update, July 1, 2018
There was reference to my Takahashi review on LENR Forum, placed there by Alain Coetmeur, which is appreciated. He misspelled my name. Ah, well!
Some comments from there:
Alan Smith wrote:
Abd wrote to Akito Takahashi elsewhere.
“I am especially encouraged by the appearance of a systematic approach, and want to encourage that.”
A presumptuous comment for for somebody who is not an experimenter to make to a distinguished scientist running a major project don’t you think? I think saying ‘the appearance’ really nails it. He could do so much better.
That comment was on a private mailing list, and Smith violated confidentiality by publishing it. However, no harm done — other than by his showing no respect for list rules.
I’ll point out that I was apparently banned on LENR Forum, in early December, 2016, by Alan Smith. The occasion was shown by my last post. For cause explained there, and pending resolution of the problem (massive and arbitrary deletions of posts — by Alan Smith — without notice or opportunity for recovery of content), I declared a boycott. I was immediately perma-banned, without notice to me or the readership.
There was also an attempt to reject all “referrals” to LENR Forum from this blog, which was easily defeated and was then abandoned. But it showed that the problem on LF was deeper than Alan Smith, since that took server access. Alan Coetmeur (an administrator there) expressed helplessness, which probably implicated the owner, and this may have all been wrapped in support for Andrea Rossi.
Be that as it may, I have excellent long-term communication with Dr. Takahashi. I was surprised to see, recently, that he credited me in a 2013 paper for “critical comments,” mistakenly as “Dr. Lomax”, which is a fairly common error (I notified him I have no degree at all, much less a PhD.) In that comment quoted by Smith, “appearance” was used to mean “an act of becoming visible or noticeable; an arrival,” not as Smith interpreted it. Honi soit qui mal y pense.
I did, in the review, criticize aspects of the report, but that’s my role in the community, one that I was encouraged to assume, not by myself alone, but by major researchers who realize that the field needs vigorous internal criticism and who have specifically and generously supported me to that end.
Shane D. wrote:
Abd does not have much good to say about the report, or the presentation delivery.
For those new to the discussion, this report…the result of a collaboration between Japanese universities, and business, has been discussed here under various threads since it went public. Here is a good summation: January 2018 Nikkei article about cold fusion
Overall, my fuller reaction was expressed here, on this blog post. I see that the format (blog post here, detailed review as the page linked from LF) made that less visible, so I’ll fix that. The Nikkei article is interesting, and for those interested in Wikipedia process, that would be Reliable Source for Wikipedia. Not that it matters much!
Update July 3, 2018
I did complain to a moderator of that private list, and Alan edited his comment, removing the quotation. However, what he replaced it with is worse.
I really like Akito. Wonderful man. And a great shame Abd treats his work with such disdain.
I have long promoted the work of Akito Takahashi, probably the strongest theoretician working on the physics of LENR. His experimental work has been of high importance, going back decades. It is precisely because of his position in the field that I was careful to critique his report. The overall evaluation was quite positive, so Smith’s comment is highly misleading.
Not that I’m surprised to see this from him. Smith has his own agenda, and has been a disaster as a LENR Forum moderator. While he may have stopped the arbitrary deletions, he still, obviously, edits posts without showing any notice.
This was my full comment on that private list (I can certainly quote myself!)
Thanks, Dr. Takahashi. Your report to ICCF-21 was of high interest, I have reviewed it here:
I am especially encouraged by the appearance of a systematic approach, and want to encourage that.
When the full report appears, I hope to write a summary to help promote awareness of this work.
I would be honored by any corrections or comments.
Disdain? Is Smith daft?