Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Here We Go Again - Cold Fusion

      In a previous job with a major technology company I reviewed submitted ideas and patents for heating and cool inventions.  Never got a submission for cold fusion device, but got a lot for devices that pulled free energy out of the air, ground, power lines.  Many came with their "university experts," of course many cleared the patent office, and many had a list of newspaper and semi-tech magazine endorsements.  However, it generally took minimal effort to demonstrate how all violated the Second Law of Thermodynamics.  Of the hundreds of submissions, we pursued none. Deja Vu!
This is either world-changing news or "one of the most elaborate hoaxes in scientific history," reports Mark Gibbs at Forbes. An Italian engineer who claims to have achieved cold fusion—the holy grail of clean energy—says his E-Cat device has been deemed credible by an independent team of scientists from European universities. They're all legit scientists with reputations on the line, writes Gibbs, but there's one huge caveat: Their paper has yet to undergo peer review. If inventor Andrea Rossi is right, however, it would mean cheap, pollution-free power for the world. Think "10,000 times the energy density and 1,000 times the power density of gasoline," notes ExtremeTech. Too good to be true? Maybe so, writes Francie Diep at Popular Science. Rossi doesn't exactly have a sterling reputation based on previous "spurious inventions" of his, and many mainstream scientists doubt that cold fusion is even possible. What's more, the paper "leaves out crucial details, for example referring to 'unknown additives' instead of specifying what chemicals actually go into the reaction."  

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