Cold Fusion Heats Up

Cold fusion is considered by many to be the Holy Grail of energy production: a contained, low-energy nuclear reaction that could theoretically produce endless, self-sustaining, and incredibly cheap energy. But, just like the Holy Grail, it has been more myth than reality.

Countless scientists have tried to successfully demonstrate cold fusion, and all have failed – until now. energyNOW! anchor Thalia Assuras takes a look at a technology that could change the way we think about energy.

image via energyNow!

Late last month, an Italian inventor named Andrea Rossi, claimed a successful test demonstration of cold fusion at the University of Bologna. His power plant, named E-Cat (for Energy Catalyzer), passed its biggest test yet, producing energy for over five hours. The test aimed to generate one megawatt, and averaged 470 kilowatts over the test duration, but fell short of its target because of a technical glitch.

Rossi says his technology succeeded where others have failed because he uses a secret catalyst to react with small amounts of nickel powder and hydrogen gas. The resulting reaction creates energy in the form of heat without any emissions, radioactive materials, or nuclear waste. The E-Cat’s energy output was measured by tracking water boiled off during the reaction, and Rossi says his test produced as much energy as 70 gallons of gasoline.

The E-Cat was built for and tested in front of an unnamed American company that intends to commercialize the technology, but questions still remain about the E-Cat’s viability. For instance, several reporters were allowed to witness the test, but only for a few minutes at a time. And, the E-Cat remained plugged into a power supply throughout the demonstration.

Skepticism aside, this test demonstration could be a significant step toward finally realizing the potential of cold fusion’s promise. Rossi says he expects the E-Cat to go into mass production soon. The full video is available below:

Editor’s Note: This video content comes to us as a cross post courtesy of energyNow! Author credit for the content goes to Thalia Assuras.

  • brooklynguest

    The demonstration of October 28th of last month was the most recent of a string of successful demonstrations of the energy catalyzer dating back to a demonstration on 1/14/11.

    • Anonymous

      What was successful about it?u00a0 Who was the client?u00a0 How do you know there was a client other than what Rossi says?u00a0 How do you know the power output and input other than what the anonymous customer’s representative said?u00a0 Who actually saw data taken?u00a0 Why was a large diesel generator connected to the “plant” and running during the entire test?

  • I buy it if an independent testing organization with a reputation to lose has verified and certified its safety and performance.

  • Anonymous

    You did a great job of properly pointing out that the so-called megawatt plant test was seen by reporters and scientists only in brief segments and none saw how the data were taken.u00a0 They had to rely on an unknown anonymous customer’s representative. And indeed, a large generator remained connected and running for the entire test.u00a0 nnThere was a minor error:u00a0 no test has ever been done at the University of Bologna or any other university.u00a0 U of B issued a specific statement denying any official connection or association with Rossi.u00a0 They said they planned a test program contracted for by Rossi but that Rossi had not yet funded it.nnThere has never been an independent test of the E-cat.u00a0 Most of the tests were done using an output measurement called heat of vaporization of water which is unreliable.u00a0 No test has ever been properly “controlled” by using a blank run with calibration.u00a0 Instead, there have been lively arguments about the validity of testing, arguments which could have been easily settled by such a run.nnRossi could easily, safely, quickly, and cheaply have an independent test done by a credible and reliable university or government lab.u00a0 He has always refused such tests including a recent offer by an LENR enthusiast, Dr. Celani.u00a0 Instead, Rossi says he says he has now sold a total of 14 megawatt “plants” — one to a secret client and 13 to a military organization which wants their test results and everything else about them kept secret. This is hard to believe.nnRossi has associated himself with an organization run by the Schneiders.u00a0 They offer for sale magnetic motors that could not possibly work because they have no energy input.u00a0 There is no evidence any has ever been sold or tested properly.u00a0 The offer for these is probably a scam similar to that perpetrated by Steorn.nnThere is no convincing evidence that Rossi has actually solved the cold fusion problem and especially none that he has ever sold anything.u00a0 That part is all according to him and him alone.n

  • Skepticism aside?u00a0Skepticism aside? u00a0There should be nothing butu00a0skepticism for this completely unverified demonstration.

    • Guest

      Those were the exact same words that went through my head when I read that bit.

  • Failed until now? u00a0This demonstration is a joke and the “scientist” an obvious charlatan. u00a0You should have someone who isn’t an idiot review your articles before they’re published.

  • Big Doug

    A “secret” catalyst, eh?u00a0 That he won’t reveal (because it’s secret) so no one else can prove/verify/disprove it.nThis con goes back two centuries, usually involving perpetual motion.u00a0 If people pay for it, he wins.

  • Anonymous

    More humbug for the unwary. Firstly, it wasn’t fusion – there is no evidence that two hydrogen (or deuterium)u00a0atoms fused to form a helium atom. Interaction of hydrogen with certain transition metal catalysts are exothermic, hence the production of heat. And the fact that it was plugged into a power supply the whole time is more than just a little bit suspicious. If he has truly produced a ‘cold-fusion’ system, he should be eager to demonstrate it in rigorously controlled conditions under the scrutiny of the scientific community. I wish I knew the name of the company so I could make sure not to invest.