Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A New Hope: Cold Fusion

Cold fusion is back in the news.

If cold fusion can be made to work, it could power the world cheaply on a virtually limitless supply of seawater. But scientists don't even know if it's possible.

Now a new study has produced evidence for the existence of low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR), the new name for the controversial process labeled "cold fusion" two decades ago.

Fusion is the energy source of the sun and other stars. It occurs when atomic nuclei are combined. Today's nuclear plants employ fission, the splitting of nuclei. Scientists have been striving for decades to tap fusion to produce electricity from an abundant fuel called deuterium that can be extracted from seawater. Fusion would not come with the radioactive byproducts of fission.

At a meeting of the American Chemical Society, the scientists described today what they claim is the first clear visual evidence that LENR devices can produce neutrons, subatomic particles that scientists view as tell-tale signs that nuclear reactions are occurring.

In all, 30 papers on the topic will be presented at the meeting this week as part of a 20th anniversary nod to the first description of cold fusion.

Today's announcement was not just a birthday wish, however.

"Our finding is very significant," said chemist Pamela Mosier-Boss of the U.S. Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) in San Diego, Calif. "To our knowledge, this is the first scientific report of the production of highly energetic neutrons from an LENR device."
That is very interesting. So far all the cold fusion guys have been able to do is to create low grade heat. Good enough for warming your coffee. Not good enough to boil water. In any case understanding what is going on will probably be useful one way or another.

I like this fusion method when it comes to generating mass quantities of energy:

Bussard's IEC Fusion Technology (Polywell Fusion) Explained

Why hasn't Polywell Fusion been fully funded by the Obama administration?

Cross Posted at Classical Values

1 comment:

99% said...

POLYWELL: Q << 0.000001 (pure speculation at this point).
COLD FUSION: Trash.


Hope you like your coffee cold.