Hope for Planet Rossi

On E-Catworld, Chapman wrote a post about the Quark-X, put up by Frank Acland, which looked at some of the same facts and ideas as I just covered on my consideration of the Gullstrom report, part of Rossi’s blog: Fact, Flabber, Flim-Flam, or Fun?

Chapman definitely lives on Planet Rossi, but here shows a willingness to recognize that something is missing. That is a cause for hope (when this happens on any “side.”) It’s worth looking at. So his report and my comments are below. I’d much rather respond here than there, though I will probably toss a nickel or two in that pond.

My comments are in indented italics. Frank Acland wrote:

Thanks to Chapman for posting this comment in the thread about the E-Cat QX paper and photo here. I thought it would be useful to feature it as a separate post.

I commend Frank for doing this. Otherwise, posts — and especially long posts — get buried in the flow of drek and irrelevancies. Here, it’s featured.

I see a lot of folks that are asking the right questions, only to be shut down by a few well meaning folks insisting on some pretty wrong facts.

He noticed. This is actually common. I operate on an ontology which distinguishes fact from interpretation and conclusions and opinions. While there are edges where it can be difficult to tell the difference it is normally not all that difficult. If what is being discussed is a written report, the text of the report is generally fact! That is, fact as to what is in the report, at least! And then people interpret this and then present their interpretations as fact. That is often what I’m pointing out.

Ignore all the diagrams, the speculations, the guesses. Look at the facts we know, and the actual statements from Rossi.

Great place to start, especially if one considers Rossi honest and accurate, and even if one doesn’t, what he writes or says is still the fact of what he writes and says.

1. There is a 1 Ohm resistor in series with the E-Cat QX reactor.

Right. It appears to be a ballast resistor or shunt resistor, and questions about its accuracy are beside the point in the report. It would be accurate enough, if it’s a standard ballast or shunt resistor. I’d have wanted to see the resistor actually described, but that’s a detail more applicable to standard scientific papers (given that the resistance is a crucial part of the analysis).

2. There are two meters hooked up in parallel reading the voltage across the resistor, but nothing is stated regarding the applied power source.

Well, not “nothing.” It says “a power source supplying direct current.” It is implied that there is no other power source. Technically, the source is turned on and off, but let’s not quibble. It’s on during the measurement period. However, the voltage is not stated, nor any other characteristics of this DC current source. My guess would be it is set for constant voltage, not constant current, but that’s a guess.

3. The use of two redundant meters is an issue of protocol, and protects the test from bad data due to meter failure or inaccuracy, which is also the likely reason they are two completely different makes and models.

It’s odd, because this kind of meter is very common and they are quite reliable. A two-meter setup would normally be used with one meter for current (either directly using an internal shut or indirectly though measuring voltage across a shunt resistor (i.e, a resistor in series with the load used for measuring current by the voltage the current causes across it) — and the other meter for voltage, either the voltage from the supply, across the entire circuit, or for measuring load power, the voltage across the load. I’d expect either one of these setups, but not what was actually done. The variations in the readings are normal for inexpensive meters. 0.4 percent variation between them is well within what I’d expect. For this kind of work, 1% precision is quite enough, and the resistor itself may only be that precise. We don’t know what they used, unless someone has identified it.

4. During the test, in the frame sample provided, we see that the resistor voltage drop is 100 mV. From this we can calculate that the series current at that time is 100 mA.

Yes. Setting aside blatant fakery, this is obvious.

5. After powered operation for a duration of 1.8 seconds, the oil bath surrounding the reactor showed a temperature increase that calculates out to 20 watts (per second) of generated heat.

Aw, 20 watts would be 20 joules per second, not watts per second. Watts are a rate. This measure is odd. A power during of 1.8 seconds is quite short. How was this measured? And measuring temperature rise takes time, there are response times. The calorimetry method and data, I do not find clear. However, the conclusion drawn is clear: assuming steady state, the calculated heating power from temperature rise is 20 watts. A common objection to Rossi power measurements is around the use of AC power and especially chopped power where measurements can be tricky. If this is actually DC power, as stated, those complications go away. There are, however, reasons to suspect that this is not fully accurate. I’ll get to that.

6. Rossi says that the reactor has low/negligible/nonexistent resistance. It is not stated if that assumption pertains only to the operational state, or even when “cold”.

I think I’ve read that statement from him.

7. When taken as a whole, if the voltage drop on the reactor really is zero, the total power consumed by the ASSEMBLY (including ballast resistor) is just the resistors 10 mW. This results in an operational COP of 2,000.

Right. very clear. If the voltage drop on the reactor is zero.

8. If all the above is TRUE AND ACCURATE, then the COP is actually orders of magnitude greater, because the resistor is actually producing 10 mW of heat directly, and ALL of the heat from the reactor is FREE, and has no mathematical connection to input power level.

Indeed. If the voltage drop is zero, in fact, take this to an extreme, there is no information from the system to the QX from the power input and the heat is independent, as described.

9. That means that the QX is entirely current dependent, and the circuit could just as well have used a .5 ohm ballast, reduced the voltage to 50 mV, maintained the exact same 100 mA current through the reactor, and exhibited an operational COP of 4,000. Go to a .25 ballast and you get a COP of 8,000. Because the voltage drop on the ballast has no direct bearing on the reactor, but it simply sets the current passing THROUGH the reactor. This is basic electronics…

Yes, it is. The current can’t do any work in the reactor.

I have seen so many people talking in circles and convincing each other that Rossi said something OTHER than what was printed right there before our eyes. And folks are changing their minds and saying “yeah, I guess that’s right”. WRONG. Read it again. It says what it says.

It does.

Now, if someone has additional actual FACTS to throw in, fine. But do not just have a group hug and decide that the paragraphs in the intro suddenly transformed or mutated. Rossi said very specific things. Stick with what we know. We can theorize about the MISSING facts, but we can’t just decide we do not like, and will abandon, the actual facts given.

Sensible. However, don’t be surprised if some people assess fact based on what conclusions might be drawn from it. If the conclusion does not fit the person’s ideas, it must be wrong and the usual place considered is the reported fact. It must be wrong. It’s a logical error, but quite a common one.

Either there is something fundamental Rossi excluded, or the QX is a current dependent reaction chamber that utilizes the presence of a 100 mA current to stimulate the release of nuclear binding energy from a small reserve of an as yet not fully disclosed amalgam of Li dust, LiAH, and ???. The reaction is singularly dependent on the current passing through the reactor, and yet exhibits little to no independant electrical resistance, making it susceptible to unstable runaway conditions, which require an external driver/ballast resistor to clamp max current to within safe levels. The size of that ballast is dependent upon tolerance factors and power handling ability of the selected ballast. The smaller the ballast, the higher the overall COP of the circuit as a whole.

In the lawsuit, a point was made about COP going up as input power went down. This was the subject of much derision, because, hey, the mathematical formula! However, the derision depends on an unstated idea that the output power is independent of the input power. But in SSM isn’t it? Yes. However, this would also mean that control is lost. This was pointed out by IH engineers as something odd or suspicious, not as proof of fraud. IH never actually insisted on fraud. More on “something is off about these reported results.”

And you want to know what is REALLY wrong with this picture? There is ONE fact that makes me doubt these numbers, and the zero resistance of the reactor… If the reactor has zero resistance, then there is NOTHING keeping him from daisy chaining 100 of them in series with a single ballast resistor fixing a 100 mA series current flowing through ALL of them, and delivering a 2KW reactor running off a single AAA battery!!! That’s technically right, but at the same time SOOOOO wrong that there MUST be something missing.

I agree with the conclusion, something is missing, or something has been added, assumed as literally true, that isn’t. First of all, the Quark-X is claimed to be a plasma device, generating a plasma. It’s gas-filled, and gas discharge devices operate by creating a plasma. When the plasma is created, the resistance, which can be very high before breakdown voltage is reached, goes down greatly. But not to zero. Ever. If it does this, this is itself an astonishing physicial phenomenon, something totally unexpected, at room temperature, for sure.

But there is more: I was unable to find any gas discharge devices with a breakdown voltage less than 75 volts. What is the initial applied voltage to the device? We are given no information. The power supply voltage is not stated. We have no information about operational voltage. What breakdown voltage, necessary to create a plasma, would be expected for a hydrogen atmosphere in the device? Not knowing the pressure, it’s a bit up in the air, but I’d not be surprised, for hydrogen, for it to be 200 V. What if that voltage is maintained, with a current of 100 mA?

The device would be dissipating 20 W. The voltage across the shunt resistor would be 100 mV.

I’m not saying this is what was happening, I’m saying that it is consistent with what was reported in the Gullstrom paper. Rossi’s statement about the resistance being zero is not reflected in the Gullstrom paper. “Zero” is generally not a measurement.


Nice job, Chapman. If you find me making mistakes on this blog, you are more than welcome to correct them. In fact, please do. I depend on my friends for that function.

One more point: initiating the plasma discharge is glossed over in the paper. As mentioned, that would be expected to take a relatively high voltage, even if only for a moment. Once the plasma is set up, current can maintain it at much lower voltage, by continuing to ionize the gas. But that requires continuous power input. Not zero.


Rossi blogged about all this.

Frank Acland
July 22, 2017 at 6:48 PM

Dear Andrea,

Just asking for a clarification, if you don’t mind:

In the latest Rossi-Gullstrom paper you report under energy input: V=0.1 R=1 Ohm → W=0.01

You explained to me in our interview that the E-Cat has a resistance, but you did not include it to keep the resistance of the E-Cat confidential, and this meant that the COP was conservative.

My question: does this mean that the 0.1 V is the voltage across the resistance of the E-Cat and the 1 Ohm resistor combined?

Many thanks,

Frank Acland

Andrea Rossi
July 22, 2017 at 9:03 PM

Frank Acland:
What I said is that should the E-Cat have an R the measurements would be conservative.
Warm Regards,

This is utter nonsense. What measurements would be “conservative?” The voltage given in the article is about 100 mV across the 1 ohm resistor, indicating a current of about 10o mA.

Increase in the resistance of the E-cat would increase the voltage across the E-cat, which would then require more input voltage, with the 105 mV becoming less and less relevant to power input. I.e, with significant R. the power input to the system and to the device itself would increase with R.

Rossi has a screw loose, somewhere. And Gullstrom is gullible, accepting nonsense and repeating it.

Neglecting the R (assuming it is zero), with the simple circuit implied, leads to a total input power of about 10 mW (100 mV times 100 mA), and then at an output power of 20 W — set aside for a moment all the possible flakiness there — the COP would be 2000. But if the resistance of the QX is 200 ohms, the voltage across the QX would be 20 V, and at the same current, the input power to the QX would be 2 W. COP 10.

With 2000 ohms, which does not seem impossible, input power would be 20 W, COP 1.

As Chapman keeps pointing out, this is very basic circuit analysis, the kind of thing I learned in high school, long before advanced physics.

Oystein Lande
July 23, 2017 at 1:18 PM

Dear mr Rossi,

Regarding the Rossi-Gullstrom paper:

The total power supply was not mentioned, but some say you used a 24 V battery?

If this is correct your total input power to the experiment setup would be 24V * 0,1 A = 2,4 Watts.

Can you confirm the battery voltage?


Andrea Rossi
July 23, 2017 at 1:57 PM

Oystein Lande:
Our power source can be either 120 or 220 V AC, or we can use 24V DC batteries.
Obviously your calculation is wrong, because one thing is the voltage at the power source, a totally different thing is the voltage that goes to the E-Cat through the circuitry of the control system.
In the same Gullstroem-Rossi paper you can read the voltage measured by the 2 voltmeters.
Warm Regards,

Classic Rossi. He claims Lande is “wrong,” but what Lande wrote is correct as stated. If there is an error, Rossi does not point it out. Lande assumed a supply current of 100 mA, running through a simple loop circuit, which will have the same current everywhere, and if this is the supply current, then the total power input to the experiment was 2.4 W. The comment about using AC power was irrelevant. The comment about reading voltage in the G-R paper was irrelevant, i.e., Lande assumed that data. 

Rossi commonly used overall system power in calculating COP, i.e., what Lande did. Here, he deflects to power supplied to the E-cat, which is unknown because of the missing resistance value, and the situation is the opposite of what he claims: if resistance is not zero, input power has not been calculated “conservatively,” i.e., in this case, by overstating it. It has been understated, and drastically so.

July 23, 2017 at 2:15 PM

Dr Andrea Rossi
Is the E-Cat QX an electric conductor or does it have a resistance ?

Andrea Rossi
July 23, 2017 at 2:57 PM

The E-Cat QX has the same conductivity of Ag.
Warm Regards,

Total misdirection. All materials are conductors, to some degree, some show very low conductivity, others high. Some show “negative resistance,” which is not actually negative resistance (there is no such thing) but is a resistance which decreases as current flow increases. Plasma lamps are an example: as the current increases, the ionization of the gas increases so the conductance increases.

But pure silver (AG) is highly conductive. A plasma that is that conductive would be, all by itself, with no XP, an amazing phenomenon under the experimental conditions. The conductivity of silver cannot be used to calculate resistance in the set-up given, because the dimensions are not given. A very thin wire of silver could have high resistance. If the reactor was bulk silver (no gas), the resistance would be very low.

My hypothesis is tending to settle. Rossi is insane, something is drastically off.

It would not be insane for him to want to conceal the actual resistance of his device; but it simply means that, without more information, the input power cannot be calculated and Gullstrom and Rossi are far off. His rationalizations are insane.

Frank Acland
July 23, 2017 at 7:18 PM

Dear Andrea,

How many 20W E-Cat QX reactors would you be able to operate from a single control box like the one you used in the recent Gullstroem-Rossi paper?

Many thanks,

Frank Acland

Andrea Rossi
July 23, 2017 at 9:21 PM

Frank Acland:
One hundred.
Warm Regards,

Again, the paper, section on the experiment.

Description of the apparatus:
The circuit of the apparatus consists of a power source supplying direct current, a 1-Ohm resistor load, and a reactor containing two nickel rods with LiAlH4 separated by 1.5 cm of space.

That’s very simple. There is slightly more complication:

During the test, a direct current was switched on and off.

There is a switch.

When the current was switched on, a plasma was seen flowing between the two nickel rods.

“Flowing” is a non-physical description. Gullstrom needs an editor. The plasma is not moving. The charge carriers are, within it, but that is quite slow for even large currents, and this would not be “seen.” The plasma would be seen, if the container allows light to pass. Plasmas generally require a much higher strike voltage than the voltage that will maintain the plasma. The lowest value I’ve ever seen for strike voltage is 75 volts. The gas in the QX would be expected to be hydrogen, which has a relatively high strike voltage compared to, say, neon. Something is missing from the description or some entirely new physical process has been found (not merely LENR).

[…] Input: 0.105 V of direct current over a 1 Ohm resistance.

The article goes on to estimate power by assuming black-body radiation, which would be utterly inappropriate for a plasma light source, which will tend to be narrow-band radiation, and would drastically overestimate radiated power. This is entirely different issue. The issue being considered here would be input power. The information stated does not imply input power, but only input current. It’s stated oddly, ungrammatically, but the intention is to state a direct current input, which is measured in amperes, not volts, but 105 mV over a 1 Ohm resistor indicates 105 mA of current through the resistance. The assumption is that this is then the current through the device, which follows from the simple circuit described.

The only “control box” described would be a DC power supply that can be switched on or off. If the device uses 100 mA of current, to run 100 devices in parallel from a single such supply would draw 10 A, which is a common power supply specification. Rossi is giving almost zero information.

The system is displayed in figure 5. In the figure, the yellow thermometer measures the temperature of the oil inside the heat exchanger. In the left in the figure there is two voltmeters that measure the mV of the current passing through the 1 Ohm brown resistance.

Very poorly edited…. What is displayed in figure 5 is not the “system.” It’s missing the power supply. There is what I’ve commonly seen: two meters, one across a shunt to measure current. Normally, the other would be measuring total power supply voltage. Instead, the current measurement is made with two meters instead of one. for no sane reason. What I suspect: the arrangement was normal, but then a lead was moved to create what is seen, to avoid disclosing actual input power (which would then tell us the conditions on the device, which Rossi wants to conceal.)

Gullstrom has been duped into supporting a “secret” experiment, the description of which is missing critical detail. He’s not the first! This is not science, he is supporting an unconfirmed commercial claim, and his report is not confirming it, because of the missing information which he fails to note. He goes on to confuse the power dissipation in the shunt resistor with “energy input,” which is preposterous. 

Rossi goes on with more “information” about the QX. He is not necessarily talking about the experiment that Gullstrom witnessed, and the image conceals almost as much as it reveals. Where are the leads connected? How many wires are going into the QX? It looks like a two-terminal device, but, if so, how is it controlled? Where are the electronic components Rossi talks about? To be damaged by heat as he claims, they have to be intimately placed with the QX. If there are only two wires, how is the QX system controlled with a DC input?

The calorimetry appears to be very primitive. A fixed amount of oil is being heated, and for a very short time, apparently, the temperature rise is only 1.58° C. If the device is immersed in oil, the heat capture efficiency given is strangely low.

I can imagine some set of conditions that would then lead to descriptions similar to what Rossi and Gullstrom have written. But for an experimental report, we would not normally need to guess, to supply hypotheticals for the most basic aspects of the experiment. But I will give an obvious possibility.

Perhaps Rossi has found an effect that creates a plasma without high input voltage. I have elsewhere mentioned such a possibility: radioactive gas (which will lower the strike voltage greatly). If something heats the gas to a high temperature, this may create a plasma, I don’t know the temperature necessary for hydrogen off the top of my head. However, the apparatus shown doesn’t indicate such high temperatures. The analysis of peak radiation doesn’t show it, as given. One would need much more information.

This is a classic Rossi mess.


Author: Abd ulRahman Lomax

See http://coldfusioncommunity.net/biography-abd-ul-rahman-lomax/

6 thoughts on “Hope for Planet Rossi”

  1. Hi Abd,

    Great mascotte you have there. What is that brown spot in its neck. It looks the Weasel has had surgery on his vocal ligaments and now has to stay quiet for a while.



    1. Ah, we see what we want to see, particularly when we have no clue as to weasel anatomy. Weasels are mammals like us. The dark spot is well below a neck, more like between the shoulders, more like the position of the heart. It’s unclear what it is. I thought it might be an effect of how the fur is laying. Other photos of this species show that white fur with no visible blemishes. Maybe it was a bit of his lunch.

      I highly recommend studying the weasel, or stoat, or ermine, these are all names of the same species. This is an Alaskan Weasel. There are some great videos of the species, in England, showing how they catch rabbits. They can take a rabbit that is ten times their size. What the stoat does in the video might be familiar, if you think. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODEUK5sB5vE

      Crazy, beautiful animals.

        1. On the other hand, the rabbits who sit around watching a stoat chase a rabbit, wearing him out, and catching and killing him, as if nothing is happening, bother me just a little. “Oh, look at Ralph! We told him not to play with stoats, look what’s happening to him now! Such a shame, tsk, tsk. Now, what’s for lunch?

          Stoats are very dangerous to small mammals (even many much larger than stoats). Humans are even more dangerous. Have some respect, folks.

  2. So: for the quark-X data.

    In the second experiment, we have a potentially more secure output measurement (rate at which oil heats up) and a similar input power measurement.

    My first and best conclusion – unaltered by all the subsequent ifs and buts – and those are needed when dealing with such poor write-ups as Rossi produces – is as Abd says here, the input power is some unknown voltage across the quark-X multiplied by the (properly measured ) current through the quark-X. And inserting plausible voltages for plasma discharge we get input power in the 10s of Watts similar to the claimed output power.

    If you look at the paper write-up you can see that he clearly states that he is measuring the power in the resistor, and indeed calculates power from a single voltage and resistance as would be the case for that. Which is weird. It makes the input power claims unfounded.

    On top of that Rossi claims in an interview with Frank that – what? it is difficult to tell from Frank’s confused notes. If the quark-X has a low resistance under this 100mA operating condition obviously the power in is low, but Rossi has given no information about how he knows that. It is only in Rossi-world that such 100% rubbish input power measurement could be spun into “oh well maybe Rossi is right”.

    We see here the Rossi effect at full volume. Rossi’s published methodology is as Abd and iI suggest: measure the power in a 1 ohm resistor in series with the reactor, and assume that the reactor power is equal to or lower than this. Absurd. The picture would appear to support this clear statement.

    ECW readers get quite concerned at this, because it is difficult even for them to work out some way that this could be real. Their worldview requires them to believe what Rossi says, so it is a problem.

    After much blog speculation, rossi comes back with further explanations that (sort of) satisfy people. this is post hoc – where rossi has read all the forum comment and is able to select the best most inventive ideas for how it could possibly work and confirm them. We saw and example of this with the (later contradicted by rossi0 endothermic reaction excuse for the doral test power dissipation. it was blog sourced and afterwards mentioned by Rossi.

    All of this is exactly what we expect given my reading of Rossi’s character. Rossi does not care about technical accuracy. His technical statements are essentially random. Locally equations are used that make sense. Globally there is no sense that it needs to be consistent. Given the partial information you need both technical expertise and the persistence to piece things together to process this properly. Few can do it. And misinterpretation of the fragmentary evidence is easy to do and complex and technical to disprove.

    This is a perfect foil for blog acceptance. ECW readers will nearly always manage a half-plausible positive misinterpretation and Rossi can later drop hints that confirm this without ever tying himself down to something clear and substantive that can be contradicted.

    the communication mechanism and audience Rossi has established is a work of pure genius, and serves his clear desire for public adulation, as well as his need to draw in naive new investors.

    It is frustrating commenting if you care for technical accuracy, because the distinction between accurate and innaccurate readings is too comples to be followed by most. Those with a facility for words and no concern about technical plausibility can interpret the fragmentary facts in the only way which makes sense (to them). IHFB delivers this with great skill and flagrant disregard for technical sense. He is honest about his reasoning: he needs – for it to make sense – and interpretation that preserves the truthfulness of Rossi’s statement that the input power is 10mW (or less – unstated consrvative approximations are allowed, thus making it a bit easier to square the circle.

    All this is interesting psychology and fascinating rhetoric. It still makes me annoyed. I just like looking at technical problems and reaching as good an answer as can be found, preserving uncertainty. Not a great crowd-pleaser.

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