When given $300 for an airline ticket anywhere, what kind of woman chooses to attend a conference of the American Chemical Society? And she’s not even a chemist, much less a scientist of any stripe. Yes, the ACS annual meeting was in sunny San Francisco this spring and part of her getaway trip included an afternoon with a New Energy group at her host’s house, meeting with an inventor who drove up from Los Angeles, and a dinner party when physicist Thorsten Ludwig of Germany joined them. But, really…You don’t go to a science conference to bask in the sunshine. These professional society meetings take place in huge imposing conference centers and pull in thousands of attendees. The many technical sub-groups are each assigned their own presentation room, sometimes in nearby hotels.
The category that attracted me to the ACS was a two-day session on New Energy Technologies. That title was a change from calling it a Cold Fusion symposium, but most of the papers presented in the room were from that specialized field. Dr. Ludwig stood out as an exception when he gave a PowerPoint show about zero-point energy research.
Cold fusion first hit the news in 1989 when two electrochemists in Utah, Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons, were pushed by university rivalries into a premature announcement of their breakthrough. By electrolyzing heavy water, they had released abundant heat energy by apparently fusing atoms inside a small metal lattice in a flask at room temperature, so their effect was soon misnamed “cold fusion.” It seemed to be a simple, inexpensive way to create a power-generating fusion reaction on a desktop. But when some respected laboratories couldn’t reproduce it and others didn’t get consistent results, the two were driven into obscurity. The term “cold fusion” became synonymous with quackery for many physicists.
Chemists, however, kept up interest in the effect and have in recent years allowed a room at their annual conference to be used for symposia on cold fusion. This year’s New Energy Technologies symposium at ACS had about fifty presentations.
“There’s still some resistance to this field,” New Energy Technologies symposium organizer Jan Marwan of Berlin said. “But we just have to keep on as we have done so far, exploring cold fusion step by step, and that will make it a successful alternative energy source.”
Is the effect truly fusion? Not all are convinced, and spokesmen for the field respond to the controversy by using the term Fleischmann-Pons Effect. Low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR) has also been an acceptable substitute term. New Energy Times’ publisher Steven Krivit, who co-wrote The Rebirth of Cold Fusion in 2004, now argues that it’s not fusion and so much more is happening that it shouldn’t even be called Fleischmann-Pons Effect. The LENR model is far more complex, he says, and can account for transmutations, success with ordinary water and other aspects of the heat-releasing experiments. He says using the term cold fusion makes the users look like idiots.
For brevity’s sake I’m going to use the outmoded phrase here. No matter what the field is called, however, progress is happening around the world, from Osaka National University—professor Yoshiaki Arata’s cold fusion systems using nano-structured materials—to Italy, India, and Russia.
Xing Zhong Li at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China, is developing a cold fusion reactor to demonstrate that the reaction can happen without producing dangerous radiation. I thought that was an accepted fact.
George Miley, a professor at the University of Illinois, reported on progress toward a longer-lasting type of battery via a new cold-fusion process.
Soviet Frontier Scientists
Vladimir Vysotskii, a scientist with Kiev National Shevchenko University in Kiev, Ukraine, cited surprising evidence in biological systems. Bacteria can undergo a type of cold fusion process and could be used to help dispose of nuclear waste. The bacteria transmute—transform—radioactive elements into other isotopes.
On a separate topic, Vysotskii’s first of two slide shows was about bubble cavitation which he says is a path to developing new energy technology. What led Vysotskii onto this path was the work of A.I. Koldomasov who developed the new energy source after observing cavitation-implosions (bubbles caving in on themselves) in water, as happens with “water hammer” in pipes. According to one description, Koldomasov’s device vibrated a mixture of fast-flowing waters and produced more heat energy than the energy which powered the piezoelectric vibration (oscillator). The device was reported to have put out forty kilowatts of heat energy with only two kilowatts of electrical input.
Some years ago I heard that the Koldomasov technology had been exported to Edmonton, Canada, by entrepreneurs. It was a vortex technology sounding like something the late Viktor Schauberger would have invented. Rumors said that prominent scientists from the LENR/cold fusion scene visited the northern city and saw the thing putting out more energy than it took to run it. At the ACS meeting last month I asked Massachusetts Institute of Technology physicist Peter Hagelstein if he had seen the Koldomasov invention in operation. Yes, he replied, “I saw the (anomalous electrical) arcs.”
Unfortunately, in Edmonton apparently-greedy entrepreneurs hashed the business aspect, and the venture ended in a legal mess. A Korean brought to Canada as part of the scientific team is back in his own country, and Koldomasov is dead. Vysotskii persists with water jet experiments, encouraged by the fact that cavitation occurs in nature. When I asked him specifically what his country is doing toward developing bubble cavitation prototypes into commercial power generators, Vysotskii gave a noncommital statement that they were doing “interesting” work.
Game Changing Science
During his second presentation—about transmutation of nuclear waste—it became obvious that Vysotskii is aware of the wisdom of learning from nature. He told about the failure of attempts to get unnatural monocultures of microbes (microorganisms) to make a beneficial change in radioactive waste water. The one-type bacteria seemed to suffocate in their own wastes. However, later successful tests involved numerous types of different cultures of microbes working in symbiosis (cooperation)—similar to how natural diversity of tree species intertwined creates a sturdier, more resilient forest than a plantation where trees are all of the same type.
The Soviet experimenters took water distilled from an atomic reactor operated by Kiev Institute for Nuclear Research and fed it to the live microbes. The diverse population of bacteria accomplished a controlled decontamination of hot (radioactive) wastewater; microorganisms transmuted highly-radioactive isotopes into a state of dramatically less activity than was measured in reactor water without microorganisms.
He said these results can solve the mystery of what scientists discovered in some isolated areas inside the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station accident zone, and what scientists found over time after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In certain places, despite the initial high level of radiation pollution, they found a speeded-up decrease of radioactivity.
In light of this possibility of accelerated decontamination, what should we ask our leaders to do? I believe people should insist that the nuclear power industry research and plan for serious cleanup, but don’t co-opt these transmutation discoveries to justify creating more radioactive waste. However I don’t expect the nuclear industry will acknowledge outside-the-box science anytime soon.
The Ukrainian discovery is not quite as astounding if you’ve already read about the chicken-and-egg experiments of a French scientist named C. L. Kervran, who incidentally was the French government’s expert on radiation poisoning. Mainstream scientists ignored his conclusions that chickens who are fed a calcium-poor diet transmute potassium from oats into calcium to harden their eggshells. Kervran described the change as a low-energy nuclear reaction.
What else does biological transmutation mean? Some frontier scientists say it means that the mainstream science model of the atom needs to be reconsidered. And if such a basic building block could be something other than what the experts teach, then a revolution in science is overdue.
Could Einstein Be Wrong?
Right now we could listen to the voices of dissident scientists from around the world such as those in the international Natural Philosophy Alliance (NPA) who are meeting at Cal State University in Long Beach, California on June 23-26. They also host a day of science demonstrations and talks for the public, on the 26th. One of their public event speakers is an expert in Global Positioning Systems and will focus on the surprising fact that GPS runs on Newtonian Mechanics (classical physics) instead of Einstein’s form of relativity. I remember the late Jean-Paul Vigier, distinguished physicist from France, telling me that NASA uses a type of mathematics that they don’t share with university mathematicians.
This magazine may not reach you before June 26 but you can always check out the website http://www.worldsci.org where the dissident scientists speak out in online video conferences. Some of them, such as NPA organizer Greg Volk and World Science Database webmaster David de Hilster, explain science concepts clearly—in plain words that we nontechnical persons can easily understand. If you are a technical person, or a funder, think about helping to create some of the experiments that need to be done. Volk says “My desire is just to understand nature better.” And he recognizes that the really innovative science advances come from outside the mainstream science community.
Natural Philosophy Alliance was founded by the late John Chappell in 1994. When the NPA was included albeit reluctantly in a physics conference in Vancouver, I sat in a University of British Columbia stuffy room listening to a then-small NPA group present their ideas to their peers. Now the alliance has grown and makes wider use of an informal but effective peer-review in which volunteers read and comment on papers of fellow scientists. Their system helps NPA members improve their science and describe it more clearly, rather than emphasizing acceptance or rejection of it. To see the quality of NPA papers, click the “Abstracts” tab at http://conf17.worldnpa.org/.
Diversity of Discoveries
At the chemical society conference in San Francisco, I met Thomas Stolper, who a few years ago wrote a biography of Randell Mills, appropriately titled Genius Inventor. Stolper is upbeat about the research and development path that Dr. Mills is pursuing today.
More than a decade ago, Mills’ basic physics breakthroughs led him to experiment with ordinary water and a catalyst to test his theory’s predictions. Water, as you know, is made of molecules each containing an oxygen atom and two hydrogen atoms. His theory predicted that an unusually small type of hydrogen atom, which he calls a hydrino, could be formed.
Mills learned that when the hydrogen atoms shrink, new materials are created. Perhaps that discovery could someday prevent the need for mining certain metals from the earth. His invention called the BlackLight Process ap
pears world-changing in another way; it points toward transforming the energy industry. The energy released from his process is about 200 times more than from burning an equal amount of hydrogen gas. His company says this new energy source can be used for heating and power generation—either in big central power plants or smaller distributed power—and in powering vehicles. Mills’ company recently signed its seventh commercial agreement, this time licensing an Italian energy provider to use the BlackLight process to make heat. That abundant heat can be turned into electricity. Mills and his colleagues make use of science conferences themselves; they have had more than eighty peer-reviewed science papers published about his new chemical process which releases energy from hydrogen atoms.
Recently BlackLight developed an even more efficient and cheaper route from water to electricity. Instead of the need to convert heat into electricity, the technology called CIHT is a unique electrochemical cell that proceeds directly to electricity.
So much else is happening; watch Sterling Allen’s PESwiki website for daily news. And I’ll try to blog more about the emerging inventions (www.JeaneManning.com). As I write this, two Americans are heading to the former Soviet Union to test a high-energy-output magnetic converter they have been funding. It has some similarity to the pioneer magnetic invention of John Searl of England.
With the famous inventor Searl scheduled to be there, the Extraordinary Technology conference, July 29 to August 1, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is shaping up to be an especially interesting event. While the Natural Philosophy Alliance focuses on bridging physics theorists with technicians who do hands-on experiments, Extraordinary Technology conference organizer Steven Elswick advertises the device builders as his star speakers. Consider attending a New Energy conference—while they still attract only hundreds, not thousands.