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Scott Chubb in Nov 2010 Physics Today Letter gives a theory of cold fusion without gamma rays.

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On Jan 23, 2011, at 3:24 PM, nick herbert wrote:
"Thank you Brian for providing information on what
might be the most important discovery of the 21th-century--
the Focardi-Rossi cold-fusion demonstration at University
of Bologna (1/14/11) which produced 12 kW of heat for more than 30 minutes
using ordinary hydrogen and Ni as the reactants.
This experiment is important not only because of the large amount
of heat produced but also because it uses hydrogen rather than
deuterium which would make power reactors based on the F-R Effect
much cheaper to run.
However I (Nick Herbert) am very skeptical concerning the results of this
experiment and predict that it will go the way of Pons-Fleishman, that is,
it will never be able to be reproduced by other researchers and may even
be a scam.
I hope I am wrong because this Bologna invention could truly change the world.
Here is my reasoning (I welcome input from Brian and other physicists).
Focardi & Rossi are disturbingly vague concerning the actual mechanism of
their reaction except that it is some sort of nuclear reaction between protons
(hydrogen nuclei) and Nickel. Such a p-Ni reaction would be expected to produce
an isotope of copper in an excited state which upon de-excitation would transfer some
of its energy to the water bath. Since this is a nuclear reaction rather than a chemical
one, we expect a great deal of energy from each reaction R.
The conversion factor between nuclear energies (MeVs) and heat energy (Joules) is:
1 MeV = 1.6 X 10^-13 Joules
Now suppose each nuclear reaction R produces 1.5 Mev.
Then to produce a power output of 12 kW (= 12000 Joules/sec) would require
a reaction rate R(dot) of 5 x 10^16 reactions/second.
R(dot) = 5x10^16 reactions/second
Consider a typical p-Ni reaction with Ni(58)--the most abundant Ni isotope (68.3%)
(taken from an AEC Chart of the Nuclides)
p + N(58) --> Cu(59)* --> Ni(59) + positron + neutrino + gamma.
According to the AEC chart the positron and neutrino share an energy of 3.78 Mev
and the gamma takes away another 1.1 Mev. For the sake of easy calculation I assume
the average kinetic energy of the positron is 1.5 Mev AND THAT THIS ENERGY IS ABSORBED BY THE WATER BATH. The rest of the beta-decay energy is taken away by the neutrino and plays no further part in the calculation.
Hence the figure used here of 1.5 Mev per reaction.
However in addition to the heat energy, each nuclear reaction produces 3 gamma rays-- one
(of energy 1.1 Mev) from deexcitation of Cu(59)* and two gamma rays of (0.511 Mev each)
from annihilation of the positron.
Hence the Focardi-Rossi reactor operating at 12000 watts might be expected to produce a gamma ray output of
G(dot) =  15 x 10^16  gamma rays/second.
The strength of a radioactive source is measure in Curies
1 Curie = 3.7 x 10^10 disintegrations/sec
Thus the calculated gamma ray flux from the F-R reactor is then
equivalent to a radiation source of strength
4x10^6 Curies of gamma radiation
[expected output from the Focardi-Rossi reactor]
From the Wikipedia entry on the Curie as a unit of radiation
"A radiotherapy machine may have 1000 Curies of a radioisotope such as Cesium 137
or Cobalt 60. This quantity of nuclear material can produce severe health effects within a few minutes of exposure."
ONE THOUSAND CURIES is considered a seriously dangerous radiation source.
Yet the calculated radiation strength of the Focardi-Rossi reactor (running at 12000 watts) is in the range of ONE MILLION CURIES.
To their credit the researchers at Bologna placed a gamma ray detector along side the reactor but it detected essentially nothing during the course of the experiment.
In conclusion, I wish the Italian experimenters every success and hope that their invention will revolutionize the world by producing a cheap, efficient and clean source of energy for mankind.
However the total lack of gamma rays from what is supposed to be a nuclear reaction is highly suspicious. If I were an investor I would be extremely cautious about putting money into this scheme until F & R manage to produce a plausible mechanism for the operation of their device.
What's your thinking concerning this device, Brian?
Nick Herbert
On Jan 23, 2011, at 2:34 AM, Brian Josephson wrote:
--On 22 January 2011 16:54:37 -0800 Paul Zielinski wrote:
It's a long thesis and not everyone has the time to wade through it.
She has an interesting article in July 2010's Scientific American (requires subscription to read it all on line):
Is the Universe Leaking Energy?
Total energy must be conserved. Every student of physics learns this
fundamental law. The trouble is, it does not apply to the universe as
a whole
PS on the subject of Sci.Am., take a look at
and my comment.  Disgraceful, but one expects no better from them!
PS2: are you (Sharon especially) aware that a cold fusion reactor has been demonstrated in Italy?  The 'scientific report' is due out soon. See
and <http://www.lenr-canr.org/News.htm>
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