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Steorn Scepticism and Rossi

August 30, 2011

eCatNews is a single focus site. I understand that many people want to discuss a range of topics and as long as it does not distract us from the main theme, I let it go. I have ignored frequent references to Steorn. This subject (ECat) has nothing to do with that simply because they both involve an as-yet unproven new energy claim. While I suspect it is sometimes brought up to derail the conversation (but not always) there are lessons relating the two that are worth noting. That is the intention of this post. Please feel free to discuss as you will but in the future, if I see its mention in a context unrelated to the subject in the headlights, I will delete it without comment. This is not intended to suppress or hide anything but as a determination to maintain the true focus of this site.

One of the hardest things to do is to look inward and force yourself to see what you’d rather not. Absolute honesty can be tough but ultimately rewarding. Pathological sceptics hopping from case to case or the uncritical believers they shadow, often repeat the same pattern as though tramping a circular treadmill going nowhere. I understand the motive of the believer who lives a life of hope but, unless it is a job, I cannot fathom the pathological sceptic who spends thousands of hours working on something they do not believe in. Thus, in trying to fend the often monotonous (and frequently intellectually dishonest) arguments from this camp, it can seem to others that I disagree with everything they say. The best of liars use truth as a powerful weapon and the biggest truth the pseudosceptics have on their side is that, when it comes to the only result that matters, so far, they have been proven correct.
I am not a free energy activist, but a writer interested in our future and in science. Prior to Rossi’s eCat, I was intrigued by an advert the Irish company (Steorn) placed in The Economist. Why would they do such a thing (at around $17K) when what they were saying was obviously crap? I visited their site, expecting to spot the real motive quickly. I did not.
This was no alternative gimmick for a movie or a viral seed for some non-science product. They really were claiming a new energy device and they had convinced others to invest over fourteen million Euros in the tech. Curious, and expecting the truth to be revealed soon, I followed events on the forum and broke a trip to Spain to hop over to a party in Dublin in an attempt to figure out these crazy people. Despite the insults from the likes of Maryyugo and Thicket (at the time) I can assure you that the people behind Steorn were real and experienced engineers. After signing an NDA, I was privy, along with others, to many of the technical details behind the technology and the related device; the Orbo. The ideas were interesting, inventive and really, pretty damned clever.
Getting to know the main players and the technical details behind their claims led me to wonder if they had truly discovered something new. The effect of one cycle was tiny but the promise of high output at increased speed was tantalising. That said, the precision engineering required to harness that tiny amount put replication beyond the reach of most people. Thus, proof was always just around the next corner.
Having approached the subject as a sceptic, I was slowly drawn in. I genuinely liked the people behind Steorn and admired their obvious skill and intelligence. As a member of the closed forum, I met (virtually and in person) many amazing people. Some were scientists and engineers and others were driven by a belief in the people alone. I find this hard to criticise without admitting that it became an element in my psyche and approach to Orbo.
Despite my initial disbelief, I jumped over and back again from one side of the believers’ fence to the other. I never understood the CEO’s insistence that they were breaking the laws of thermodynamics or that energy conservation did not apply. Even in my most optimistic mood, I argued against this and put it down to their lack of scientific experience. All that mattered were the results they reported. Maybe they were tapping a previously unknown reservoir. To me, it was a side-show I could ignore.
I have no intention of breaking confidences and so everything I say is public knowledge viewed through the prism of my experience.
Steorn recruited a ‘jury’ of scientists (20 of them and all sceptics). The company would give them unrestricted access to Orbo and let them announce their results to the world. They organised a demo in London and then one in Dublin. I attended both.
The pseudosceptics were infuriating. They said that there would be no demo. Excuses would be made on the day. They said there was no jury. At various stages they said that the company did not exist and a whole heap of stuff that I can say for a fact was utter nonsense. Looking back over four years of broken promises however, I can also say that, on the subject of real and provable results, so far, they have been absolutely correct.
As the London demo approached, I asked myself why the company would set up something so elaborate if it was not true. And yet, on launch day, the device ‘broke’ and all those people who came from various parts of the globe, spending thousands of dollars on fares and hotels, had to be happy with a few beers with Sean. I had a great time. Steorn abandoned that version of Orbo and moved to a new design. I gave them the benefit of the doubt with renewed scepticism and a little unreasonable hope. After all, despite the pseudosceptics’ accusations, I knew the jury was real. Why would the company give the tech to a group of twenty genuine scientists if it was not real?
When the jury reported that they found no effect, my reaction was publicly negative. My scepticism was back in force and the only reason I retained any interest was because of the people involved – those in the company and those beyond.
Steorn is not dead. Even after the poor jury verdict, they held another confident demo (this time in Dublin) that convinced no-one that mattered (as far as I know).
I truly have no idea what was going on with Steorn. If I knew at the beginning what I know now, I would have had no interest in them at the outset. I find it instructive to view my own behaviour at various points on the Steorn journey and realise that there is a part of all of us open to hope beyond sense. I thought I steered a savvy path between that tendency and dispassionate logic. I now believe that I was not always successful. I still hold out a sliver of hope because I think that the engineers working there are talented and that they believe in what they are doing. I like them but unless they put a device on the market that defies expectations, I will remain a true and hard sceptic.
This has been a cautionary tale. eCatNews is not intended as a focus for a range of free energy efforts. I fully expect mankind to move beyond oil and I find it astonishing that a Manhattan-style project has not been actioned to solve our problems. It is irrational to believe that, as our planet screams across the Universe, we will never be able to scrape a tiny fraction of its energy as we go. So far, apart from a few pioneers fighting against the grain, our efforts have been dismal.
I do not have a specific interest in this field but Steorn made me aware of what is going on and that dance led me to Rossi’s eCat. I know the pitfalls. I’ve seen the signs. I understand that we cannot rely on incredulity relating to the actions of others as a reason to think one thing over another. I will not believe that Andrea Rossi’s claims are true until he proves them according to his schedule. Neither will I fall prey to the often irrational arguments of the pseudosceptics. As surely as they bask in the correct but sad glory of past ‘victories’, their single-track vision will eventually fail them.
As you weigh the evidence one way and another, distrust certainty of any flavour without proof – especially if it comes from within.
Distrust your hope if it involves your wallet but do not destroy it. Rossi is different. He is doing many of the things Steorn merely said it would do. He is worth watching.

Posted by on August 30, 2011. Filed under History,Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

61 Responses to Steorn Scepticism and Rossi

  1. Thicket

    August 30, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    That’s a good post Paul.

    I could write a lengthy skeptics perspective of the Steorn saga, but I’ll abide by your wishes by keeping the focus on Rossi.

    I will say that although your post contains very strong anti-skeptic bias, you accurately describe Steorn’s failure to demonstrate anything credible.

  2. Thicket

    August 30, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    Part 1 of 2 (due to post length)

    One item in the Kullander and Essen report has nagged at me. It deals with the reaction enthalpy of hydrogen over nickel catalyst.

    Here is the report.

    http://www.nyteknik.se/incoming/article3144960.ece/BINARY/Download+the+report+by+Kullander+and+Ess%C3%A9n+%28pdf%29

    The report says the following.
    ——————-
    “The enthalpy from the chemical formation of nickel and hydrogen to nickel hydride is 4850 joule/mol.

    Any chemical process for producing 25 kWh from any fuel in a 50 cm3 container can be ruled out. The only alternative explanation is that there is some kind of a nuclear process that gives rise to the measured energy production.”
    ———————–

    I had a fundamental problem with this. From personal experience I know that hydrogen over nickel catalyst can generate major exothermic heat spikes. The heat released is much larger than the 4850 joule/mol. quoted in the Swedish report. I also knew that the 4850 joule/mol for chemical formation of nickel hydride was correct.

    I knew Kullander and Essen were wrong, but there was no good explanation for their error.

    Then I came across the following, and it became clear.

    http://www.hydrogen.energy.gov/pdfs/review06/stp_3_johnson.pdf

    It’s a study on hydrogen storage using metal hydrides. It was collaborative work involving the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University, DOE Metal Hydride Center of Excellence and the National Energy Technology Laboratory.

    It’s an interesting read for those with some physics and chemistry knowledge. A key graph can be found on page 9. It shows the enthalpy of reaction range for the formation of a variety of metal hydrides. The range is approximately 10,000 – 200,000 joule/mol.

    • LCD

      August 30, 2011 at 7:36 pm

      So let me summarize, you came across a reference which you interepreted wrong and actually 100% agrees with Essen and Kullander. Then maryyugo just agrees with you without even double checking it because it fits her agenda. Got it.

      • Thicket

        August 30, 2011 at 8:35 pm

        LCD

        Yes, nickel hydride is NiH. One mole nickel plus 1/2 mole of hydrogen gas (1 mole of H) gives one mole of NiH. For the purists, yes, I know that NiH is not very stable except at high pressures.

        You assume that NiH enthalpy is at the low end of the University of Pittsburgh et al graph. Data or reference please.

        Are you saying that you think that chemical enthalpy of NiH formation is the same as physical hydrogen-nickel lattice enthalpy? Data or reference please.

        My reference is personal practical experience of highly exothermic reactions with hydrogen over nickel catalyst. Although I don’t care to find the reference, I also recall an observer (Levi?) saying that he witnessed a sudden increase in energy output when the E-Cat started up, and that it subsequently subsided.

        I’m perfectly happy to answer sincere and honest questions. Your sarcasm diminishes your credibility.

        • LCD

          August 31, 2011 at 1:17 pm

          So you want me to find a reference on top of kullander’s and the one you found that tell you the same thing? That those two were correct.and you made hopefully an honest mistake? That just sounds silly. Here is a better idea, why dont you just admit you made a mistake.
          Im pretty sure that my credibility on a bad day will overwhelm yours and maryyugos combined.

          And by the way the reason im so hard on you is because you make these bold statements without any qualifiers or implications that you might be wrong. The first time you did it you apologized, but you keep doing it.

          Stop hitching yourself to maryyoyo who I think most people have just given up on. There is still hope for you. I think.

          • Thicket

            September 1, 2011 at 12:27 am

            LCD

            In other words, you don’t have the technical knowledge to provide a cogent response.

          • LCD

            September 1, 2011 at 2:25 am

            Are you serious, so you are saying that you don’t see that your own reference gives the same 4850j/mol number as K and E’s reference?

            You don’t see that your reference is in mol of H2 and and K and E’s is in mol of Ni.

            You don’t see that the graph that you state “doesn’t include Ni” actually does?

          • Thicket

            September 1, 2011 at 12:02 pm

            LCD

            Of course I see it. Did you see my post acknowledging the 1/2 mole of hydrogen gas needed for the reaction? Maybe you didn’t or maybe you didn’t understand it.

            Now back to your claim. You make an unsubstantiated assumption on enthalpy of nickel hydride.

            * I don’t think you understand the difference between the chemical nickel hydride (as per Kullander and Essen) and nickel metal hydride lattice (a subset of metal hydrides from the University of Pittsburgh et. al. study)

            * I don’t think you understand the significance of Rossi’s solid nickel catalyst in hydrogen forming nickel metal hydrides. Kullander and Essen assumed it was a simple chemical reaction. It wasn’t. They were wrong.

            * I think you’ve either ignored or don’t understand that nickel metal hydride is a fundamental part of a major energy storage device in common use. The reason is that it has high energy density. I’m not even sure you know what energy density is without looking it up.

            * The technical expertise you’ve demonstrated stops at high school chemistry where you learned about moles.

            * You have no practical experience with nickel catalysts in a hydrogen environment.

            I suggest that you show some integrity by admitting you are out of your depth.

          • LCD

            September 1, 2011 at 1:44 pm

            Lol
            Thicket, is that for thick headed.
            Let me put it to you in plain english. You dont have a point. You dont have any corroborating evidence for your attempt at an explanation of rossis device and you havent shown any of us that you know what are talking about.

            You’re own reference suggests that the enthalpy you question is very similar.
            Explain how you get from your source that it should be higher tjan what EK calculated, clearly.
            Furthermore your comparison of NiMH to Ni and Hydrogen is so apples.and oranges I dont know where to begin. .

          • Thicket

            September 2, 2011 at 3:58 am

            There you go with your insults again.

            You have again not even attempted to answer any technical questions. I can only conclude that you are incapable of doing so. Waving of hands won’t help you.

            In terms of NiMH and Nickel hydride, let me explain (again).

            Kullander and Essen calculated the enthalphy of Nickel hydride creation from standard heats of formation. They assumed that the Rossi reaction was the chemical formation of nickel hydride. It’s not.
            Nickel hydride, NiH(0.5) (I don’t know how to type subscripts here) is an unstable chemical compound except for high pressure.

            Rossi uses nickel impregnated catalyst. The reaction is a nickel metal hydride physical absorption/desorption of hydrogen in a lattice with nickel.

            The Kullander/Essen chemical enthalphy is simply wrong. It’s not the reaction that takes place on solid catalyst with metallic nickel.

            You’re right about the apples and oranges. Kullander and Essen thought it was apples, but in reality it was oranges.

          • LCD

            September 2, 2011 at 1:20 pm

            Thicket do you even know what the metal is in NiMH? Or what the actual chemical compond is of the Ni?
            Explain to all of us what is “ni impragnated catalyst” and how you came to that conclusion? Also since youve no doubt done the calculations? What is the exact pressure inside rossis reaction chamber oncr it heats up? Explain the tiny amount of Hydrogen consumed in the demo.

            Please answer the question, how does your source show that EK are wrong?

  3. Thicket

    August 30, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    Post 2 of 2

    Nickel hydride was not tested so we don’t know the enthalpy of reaction. It’s very likely much higher than 4850 joule/mol.

    The problem with the Kullander and Essen assumption is that hydrogen over nickel involves a physical reaction with an enthalpy much larger than the chemical reaction to form nickel hydride.

    The enthalpy of reaction for the physical formation of nickel hydride will not be a well-defined number. It will vary depending on many physical factors including pore volume, pore size, active surface area and nickel dispersion. The chemical formation of nickel hydride is a fairly precise number and can be easily found in a chemistry data base.

    I’m not saying that the physical enthalpy of nickel hydride formation on the E-Cat catalyst is the only or even major source of E-Cat heat. I’m saying that Kullander and Essen were wrong when they concluded that only a nuclear reaction could release significant heat in the E-Cat since chemical reaction enthalpy was too low.

    I suspect some may take the physical reaction enthalpy data I’ve referenced and do calculations using Rossi’s catalyst weight data and hydrogen use information from the demonstrations. I don’t trust Rossi’s information so I won’t find such calculations credible. If Rossi says there were 10 grams of nickel catalyst in the reactor but there actually was 1 kg only Rossi would know. We don’t know what’s under that pile of insulation and Rossi has been clear that he’s been meticulously secretive about his reactor contents.

    This mistake by Kullander and Essen is just one more example of the faulty ‘appeal to authority’ approach taken by Rossi supporters. ‘So many respected scientists can’t possibly be wrong about E-Cat’, the argument goes. Sorry folks, but they can be wrong. This example where Kullander and Essen neglected the physical enthalpy of nickel hydride formation, they were wrong.

    • maryyugo

      August 30, 2011 at 5:05 pm

      Excellent points about the nickel hydride reaction. You may wish to email Kullander and Essen. They’re planning to give more presentations about the E-cat, presumably without any new data. This information could make them less liable to looking foolish later on.

      • LCD

        August 30, 2011 at 7:28 pm

        Yeah Yeah email them please! Tell them exactly that.

    • John Dlouhy

      August 30, 2011 at 5:45 pm

      Thicket, you wrote “I suspect some may take the physical reaction enthalpy data I’ve referenced and do calculations using Rossi’s catalyst weight data and hydrogen use information from the demonstrations. I don’t trust Rossi’s information so I won’t find such calculations credible.”

      While we must accept Rossi’s word on the weight and composition of the metal, and secretly it could have been larger, the enthalpy of formation of the solid solution would still be limited by the amount of gas available. In this case that was determined by Essen and Kullander weighing the pressure tank before and after the demonstration and finding it less by only a gram. Not enough to account for the observed heat, even with the highest figures from the graph on page nine.

      • maryyugo

        August 30, 2011 at 6:02 pm

        Just out of curiosity, what was the starting weight that they supposedly accurately measured a gram under? And what sort of device did they use for the measurement? Measuring things doesn’t seem to be K and E’s long suit.

        • Ransompw

          August 30, 2011 at 6:11 pm

          I’m sorry but go to any scientific paper and eliminate any measurements because you don’t trust them and what do you have? NOTHING! So based on this position, in my opinion you must concede that NO scientific paper ever proves anything and they are all deficient and clearly point to a fraud or scam.

          If that is the criteria for belief, you will never believe anything you don’t perform personally, which just might be the case.

          • maryyugo

            August 31, 2011 at 2:25 am

            “I’m sorry but go to any scientific paper and eliminate any measurements because you don’t trust them and what do you have? NOTHING! So based on this position, in my opinion you must concede that NO scientific paper ever proves anything and they are all deficient and clearly point to a fraud or scam. ”

            That’s classical “believer” nonsense– I hear that sort of silliness all the time. The criteria for scientific evidence are a properly designed and performed experiment using proper controls and calibrated equipment in a reproducible fashion. And the reproduction must be done independently. I can guarantee you that if an outfit like a major test lab or a major university (officially under departmental approval) can reproduce Rossi’s results, I’ll be among the first to believe them.

          • maryyugo

            August 31, 2011 at 2:26 am

            And by the way, ever try to measure a gram difference in weight when the cylinder’s weight is measured in kilograms? You can do it but it’s far from a casual job. I’d want to know exactly how it was done and K & E didn’t say.

          • Ransompw

            August 31, 2011 at 4:47 am

            What’s the snippy believer stuff. You act like it is an insult, I actually see it as a compliment. I’m willing to give Rossi the benefit of the doubt. I am a positive person I see the glass as half full and I don’t spend my time grousing around bitter with the world. I actually don’t get you. Have you ever had any success in your life or has it just always sucked. Well I’m a believer, proud of it and it really hasn’t hurt me at all, maybe you should try it.

          • maryyugo

            August 31, 2011 at 7:25 am

            “Have you ever had any success in your life or has it just always sucked. Well I’m a believer, proud of it and it really hasn’t hurt me at all, maybe you should try it.”

            Let’s make sure I understand you: you’re proud of being gullible and easily bamboozled? Why?

          • Ransompw

            August 31, 2011 at 1:42 pm

            Being optimistic and positive is not being guilible and easily bamboozled. I haven’t invested any money in Rossi’s Ecat and I probably spend less time on these site then you do, so I have to this point invested less then you. But I don’t look at the world through a skeptical lens. For me anything is possible and I am happy to remain hopeful with a wary eye toward the unproven. You just seem to believe the proper method is to doubt everything. I dream great dreams and reach for the stars and as a result I have accomplished much in my life and intend to accomplish even more. What have you accomplished with your tail between your legs?

        • LCD

          August 30, 2011 at 7:37 pm

          Wow you should talk.

          • maryyugo

            August 31, 2011 at 2:27 am

            “Wow you should talk.”

            Of course I should. I do precise controlled experiments with properly calibrated instruments often and some are specifically in the relevant field which is heat transfer and fluid flow.

          • LCD

            August 31, 2011 at 8:54 pm

            “Measuring things doesn’t seem to be K and E’s long suit.”

            Your brain is a failed experiment in rationality and critical thinking.

      • Thicket

        August 30, 2011 at 6:46 pm

        John Dlouhy

        Sorry, but I don’t accept any measurements done with Rossi in the room. Remember the camera showing him adjusting the electric heater in the Lewan demonstration?

        I also wonder how one goes about measuring one gram of hydrogen by simple weighing, but this is a red herring. Why would I believe a measurement of hydrogen when demonstration observers have shown their inability to measure steam or understand the reactions that are taking place?

      • Tim

        August 31, 2011 at 6:00 am

        John D,

        I certainly am not an expert in Nickel chemistry, but my understanding was that it could have a certain amount of hydrogen loaded into the pores in a physical process without actualling forming the hydride. Then, as the system is heated, an exothermic reaction can occur. The amount of available hydrogen, or other reactant for that matter, might be much more than the approximate gram of hydrogen that was measured.

        Again, I am no expert in this. I am repeating issues that I have read on other forums by individuals of unknown credibility, but it seems sensible to me.

    • LCD

      August 30, 2011 at 6:39 pm

      Per mole of what?

      From the reference quoted by Essen and Kullander.

      “The average values for enthalpies calculated for
      nickel hydride and nickel deuteride are: DeltaHh = −4850 J · mol−1 Ni or 9700 J · mol−1 H2″

      Your reference is quoting per mol of H2 while Essen and Kullander are referring to mol of Ni so I’m not sure what you are saying.

      Essen and Kullander actually overestimated to be conservative.

      • LCD

        August 30, 2011 at 7:26 pm

        So I don’t know if I made myself clear but essentially your reference agrees with Essen and Kullander if we assume that in that graph H2 with Ni is at the low end.

  4. Ransompw

    August 30, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    I will preface this post with an admission. I did not know of Steorn until the subject was mentioned on some sites discussing Rossi. But, having said that…

    I think the Rossi Ecat is very different from the Steorn saga for the following reasons.

    First, the evidence for Cold Fusion/LENR is much stronger. It goes back even before Pons & Fleischmann and has been arguably demonstrated many times. Nickel/Hydrogen has been the subject of tests before Rossi, and others Ahern and Brilluion are reporting positive results since Rossi. So while a commercial product is still highly debatable, the evidence that something is happening, (ie nuclear reaction) is becoming somewhat hard to ignore even for the main stream scientifictic community which banished it to Voodoo science many years ago. Goodness even Krivit believes its reality. And if you will pardon the cliche “Where there is smoke (Steam) there is fire.

    Second, while we have debated the results of the various demonstrations involving the Ecat, I find the results of Kullander/Essen and Lewan somewhat compelling. While some hidden energy source has not been ruled out and while the measurement of output was wanting, what we do know from those tests is pretty strong evidence of O/I. And while Krivit has suggested that the testers were played by the puppet master Rossi, I really don’t see it. Heck, Lewan really could have with very little real effort accurately measured output. He didn’t in the second test but he did measure the water and the disappearance of over half of the input water is strong evidence of O/I of at least 3/1. Further, the Kullander/Essen test would not even have produced steam based on the measured input. Finally, these really were the type of independant tests imagined in Steorn and both sets of testers came away with just the opposite impression as the Steorn jury and they were there, something no of us can .

    Lastly, Rossi has promised something more definitive to me then anything else, a sale of a product to a third party. Now, I think this could turn out to be fodder for skeptics if the customer is not credible or the information released is lacking, but I am willing to wait to see the players in this drama because they may put this matter to rest if they are credible.

    I also think we are still awaiting the end game for this saga and therefor have not reached the moment when the curtain falls away and all is revealed. So I suppose hope also springs eternal because the world could certainly use some good news. So I think cautious (very) optimism is still warranted.

    • maryyugo

      August 30, 2011 at 5:07 pm

      “Lastly, Rossi has promised something more definitive to me then anything else, a sale of a product to a third party.”

      Yes. But Rossi has not named the third party and until he does, we won’t know if it’s truly independent. For example Ampenergo and Defkalion are not independent of Rossi nor would yet another company in the US that he helped to form be independent.

      • Ransompw

        August 30, 2011 at 5:29 pm

        So what’s your point, I said exactly that in my post

        • maryyugo

          August 30, 2011 at 6:03 pm

          It’s not OK to agree with you and enlarge upon your “point”? Ampenergo and Defkalion are not independent of Rossi — many people won’t know that.

          • Ransompw

            August 30, 2011 at 6:20 pm

            Actually, I think most if not all posting to this site are pretty informed about the various players in this saga. And it is certainly OK to agree with a post and enlarge, but when you lift a quote from a post which is incomplete and then comment it doesn’t look like enlargement, it looks like criticism. So I just didn’t know if you had read it thoroughly or whether you were trying to make another point.

  5. maryyugo

    August 30, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    “The pseudosceptics were infuriating. They said that there would be no demo. Excuses would be made on the day.”

    Some (a few) people wrote that. Most people did not after the involvement of “Dr. Mike” and Scott and Marissa Little– all reputable engineers and scientists from the US who came all the way to London to be shown nothing and not even the courtesy of a visit to Steorn’s Dublin laboratory. That was when it was clear Steorn was a bald face scam.

    “They said there was no jury. ”

    Not exactly (and by the way, the jury was 22 people carefully chosen by Steorn and many were anything but skeptical. If you call Hugh Deasy a pseudoskeptic, he’ll debate that vigorously– he’s as devout a believer as one could be.

    Anyway most critics did not say there was no jury. I and many others said a jury MAKES NO SENSE since one can prove or disprove an claimed overunity motor with a 0.5W/cc power density in less than a week of *proper* testing by experienced testers with appropriate precision equipment and a well designed test. That’s *exactly* what Steorn never allowed. Just as Rossi so far has not. That’s one of the many parallels between the cases.

    The major difference is that Rossi has shown operating reactors to the press and to visiting scientists. Steorn never did that. Was Rossi just lucky? Did he have a trick (nickel hydride perhaps) up his sleeve? We may find out soon… There’s that words again– the one Steorn always used: SOON!

    • maryyugo

      August 30, 2011 at 5:14 pm

      Sorry for the typos… I have no way to correct them.

      • timycelyn

        August 30, 2011 at 5:54 pm

        I know – it bugs the hell out of me when I see them after posting, too! I’m trying to discipline myself to write it in word and paste across- the spell checker finds most of my bloopers…

        • maryyugo

          August 30, 2011 at 6:05 pm

          More kawphy before writing also helps prevents erroars.

  6. John Dlouhy

    August 30, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    Paul writes: I fully expect mankind to move beyond oil and I find it astonishing that a Manhattan-style project has not been actioned to solve our problems.”

    I have never understood our leaders’ inability to appreciate the fundamental importance of energy in human endeavor. Philosophically it is the actual bridge between human will and the ability to interact with and affect our environment, that is, the very reality of space, matter and energy in which we exist.

    In a more practical sense, energy powers the machines of industry that provide us with our material wealth, motivates our transportation, lights our night, conveys our messages, and cools and heats our homes. We should at the very least use limited energy resources more efficiently and yet such simple things as insulating window covers, white roofs, and better insulation aren’t even considered, never mind legislated. This is mostly due to letting the time value of money dictate our important decisions, instead of the scarcity of energy.

    When our economy started collapsing in 2007, the government should have implemented a “Manhattan” style energy project using the best energy alternatives of the day. Now, 4 years later, after printing TRILLIONS of dollars, the economy has not been fixed. Creating fiat currency can NOT fix real problems. That requires real energy. Imagine What 2 trillion dollars of solar thermal energy would mean to the economy right now and how many jobs it would have produced over the last 4 years.

    Our leaders are either ignorant of energy’s importance, which I find very unlikely, complicit in a horrifying strategy against humanity, which I hope not, or aware of ground breaking technology which can solve our problems. The latter is what I hope for.

    • Stephen

      September 2, 2011 at 7:42 am

      It’s been said before : We, humans, just don’t live long enough to appreciate the consequences of our (in)actions.

  7. LCD

    August 30, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    To Thicket
    Per mole of what?

    From the reference quoted by Essen and Kullander.

    “The average values for enthalpies calculated for
    nickel hydride and nickel deuteride are: DeltaHh = −4850 J · mol−1 Ni or 9700 J · mol−1 H2”

    Your reference is quoting per mol of H2 while Essen and Kullander are referring to mol of Ni so I’m not sure what you are saying.

    Essen and Kullander actually overestimated to be conservative.

    • Thicket

      August 30, 2011 at 9:34 pm

      LCD

      See above for my response.

      I have another question for you. If nickel hydride is such a poor energy generator as you assume what about the case of the common nickel metal hydride battery? It includes a negative anode of nickel metal alloy capable of absorbing and desorbing hydrogen.

      This battery isn’t a direct comparison of Rossi’s E-cat, but it’s quite clear that nickel metal hydrides are chosen for their high energy density (About 100 Whr per kg) and not because the reaction is low energy. The energy density compares to 60 Whr per kg for nickel cadmium batteries and 160 Whr per kg for lithium ion batteries. These three, along with the old lead acid batteries, are common energy storage devices.

      I think that Rossi’s E-Cat is also a good energy storage device (not energy creation device).

      • LCD

        August 31, 2011 at 3:39 pm

        See above

  8. William Martin

    August 30, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    As someone who is hopeful but cautious about Andrea Rossi’s invention, I know that some of the world’s best liars are the most likable people. They are, by definition, persuasive. I don’t think that Andrea Rossi is one of these people, but there’s no guarantee he isn’t, either. So, the people from STEORN may have been nice, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they weren’t lying. My feeling is that the people of STEORN were honestly convinced of their product and decided to demonstrate it before working out its kinks. But, as I said, the question of whether they are honest or not is ultimately a topic of speculation that won’t be answered until they are proven one way or another.

    • maryyugo

      August 31, 2011 at 2:20 am

      “My feeling is that the people of STEORN were honestly convinced of their product and decided to demonstrate it before working out its kinks. But, as I said, the question of whether they are honest or not is ultimately a topic of speculation that won’t be answered until they are proven one way or another.”

      No. First they lied repeatedly about what they claimed they had already done. They are verified total liars. They could never have had a 505HP motor, a “start stop or continuous self running device” or an 0.5W/cc generator. Yet they claimed at one time or the other all of the above.

      Additional proof that they scammed is that they were told again and again by multiple independent people how to test their device or barring that, how to get it tested. Scott and Marissa Little of Earthtech attended the Kinetica aborted demo and also the infamous “aftersessions” where non working Minato wheels were shown and covertly video’d. At no time did Sean or Steorn ask the Earthtech people or Dr. Mike for any assistance in testing even though both were there, both were competent and were willing.

      Steorn also lied when they offered a test kit for sale. Far as anyone knows, nobody has gotten one except maybe two or three people and none of those people could make it work.

      Steorn is an unequivocal unmitigated pure large vicious fraud in which the perpetrators had no evident intent ever other than to separate the gullible investors from their money, something that they did effectively for more than four years to the tune of a total over 20 MILLION Euros. Not bad as frauds go.

  9. LCD

    August 30, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    You know I’ve talked to my colleagues for a while and we’ve come to the conclusion that while it may seem like we can do a better job of calorimetry with 20/20 hindsight the sad fact of the matter is we keep making mistakes in our proposals for future measurments.
    Not going to get into any boring details but in essence every hypothetical test we come up with we eventually find a loophole that invalidates it.

    Interestingly we can’t disprove the measurements are absolutely incorrect either and we’re left with the conclusion that it “might be right or wrong.” Mind you we are referring to black box testing with some input power. I’m sure there is a method that will eventually prove the thing works but it is neither obvious nor easy.

    In conclusion it seems easy to cast doubt the thing works or doesn’t work at all but very hard to prove or disprove conclusively.

    Ultimately we think that the October test, short of being enclosed completely in glass with everything visible, will have a loophole found that calls for a retest.

    If (we think) however, there is a long endurance (time dept on blackbox size) test with a self sustained 1MW thermal output, then that would likely do it.

    • John Dlouhy

      August 31, 2011 at 1:26 am

      You got it LCD. It is people who don’t actually work with real things, building or testing actual assemblies who suggest that a certain demonstration would be easy. The scenario you offer is what played out last winter and early spring as scientists had access, tested it, and later realized what you called “loopholes”, oversights in their method. Of course its possible to measure it, but not nearly as easy as most seem to think.

      The focus on output has obscured the most important reason to test a large powered machine. Faking an INPUT. To sneak a few kilowatts into a machine is not that difficult. To sneak in a megawatt of electrical power is an entirely different story. You have issues of transformer capacities, breaker limits, power line capacity, metering and others that would make a long duration test with a faked 1 megawatt input nigh impossible.

      As for the output, we’ll have to wait and see what they come up with. It is supposed to be for a commercial heating application.

      • maryyugo

        August 31, 2011 at 7:45 am

        “The focus on output has obscured the most important reason to test a large powered machine. Faking an INPUT. To sneak a few kilowatts into a machine is not that difficult. ”

        No. It’s impossible to fake either input or output measurements if there is independent testing. The power would be supplied by the independent experimenter of course– the way it should ALWAYS have been done. It is folly to use Rossi’s lab, his power source, his coolant and his measurement method and his hands on the heater controls. Yet that’s what happened so far, every time.

        “To sneak in a megawatt of electrical power is an entirely different story. You have issues of transformer capacities, breaker limits, power line capacity, metering and others that would make a long duration test with a faked 1 megawatt input nigh impossible.”

        Total gibberish. A gently used megawatt diesel generator can be bought for less than $100K and fits on a moderate sized truck bed. I linked a photo of one that was being installed deep underground to one of the Rossi discussion sites — either moletrap or Defkalion’s forum or maybe both. No connection to the power line is necessary and you wouldn’t be able to hear the machine if it was buried deeply enough. You can run a long time if you have enough diesel or keep replenishing it in a building some distance away from the supposed megawatt plant.

        But faking megawatts is not the likely scenario. The usual thing if it’s a scam is delay, changing the goal posts, making “improvements and changes”, and then more delays– problems with regulators, with investors, with client requirements and so on. Or the demo is done without proper access being given to the independent testers. There’s all sorts of ways to obfuscate. That’s why testing a simple E-cat on a tabletop done independently is the way to go if you really want to know if Rossi is for real.

      • LCD

        August 31, 2011 at 8:59 pm

        So I guess the latest is two months, ya that would do it.

    • maryyugo

      August 31, 2011 at 2:22 am

      Yeah– that’s why some of us keep on saying: no megawatt “plant” is necessary or desirable to prove that the E-cat works. What’s needed in proper input and output measurements done by someone unconnected in any way with Rossi. And Rossi could be present to monitor his secrets but he could not lay a hand on any controls personally. All his instructions would have to be considered and carried out by the independent experimenters.

      • John Dlouhy

        August 31, 2011 at 3:20 am

        I think the scope of your consideration is just too small, maryyugo. If Dr. Rossi had only the intention of proving himself then he would likely follow your game plan. But his concerns are much wider, including the patent process, protection of his industrial secret, licensing, legal obligations, actual technical hurdles, industrial implementation concerns, and the list continues. Its difficult to imagine dealing with so much and it doesn’t surprise me that his actions are sometimes different from what we would do.

        • maryyugo

          August 31, 2011 at 7:35 am

          Yeah well… maybe. Or maybe Rossi won’t do a simple test that would prove the E-cat works because he can’t and he’s trying to hide that with all that presumed complexity.

          I’m not saying this necessary applies to Rossi but it is an absolute hallmark of scammers that they complicate and obfuscate and delay what would be a simple, direct, cheap and fast test. And the foremost way they do it, in energy related scams, is to propose some immediate and totally unnecessary, spectacular practical application.

          OK examples: Dennis Lee had his generator, Goldes has his always-around-the-corner-for-the-last-20 years magnetic motor/generator, Steorn had motors, a cell phone charger and an African pump, Tilley had a classy, sexy electric DeLorean auto, a boat and *gasp* a gold cart. All the whack jobs on peswiki.com have some sort of motor, generator, car, boat, pump or other gadget that is completely unnecessary to prove their theory and in fact complicates and confuses any attempt to verify a proof.

          So Rossi needs no humongous plant to prove the E-cat works and he needs none of those plans you speak of. All he needs is less than a week of independent testing of a single small E-cat on a table top and if it worked, the world would instantaneously be a different place, the mainline news media would be full of Rossi’s story, and everyone would support and help him and be flocking to be the first to get an E-cat. But of course, he won’t do it.

          And BTW, he isn’t “Dr. Rossi”. His doctorate degree is from a now defunct diploma mill. It’s worthless. This has been discussed and documented many times elsewhere.

        • Haldor

          August 31, 2011 at 7:58 am

          Exactly say to yourself what would look more impressive for a commercial roll-out:

          1. A table top steam engine
          2. A steam locomotive

          • maryyugo

            August 31, 2011 at 4:29 pm

            Did you ever see some of the early steam engines? They were no locomotives and they didn’t need to be to prove that steam power was real.

  10. georgehants

    August 31, 2011 at 9:09 am

    Wonderful article ADMIN, but nearly every comment a complete waste of time with the E-CAT to be demonstrated in a few weeks.
    Not a single comment to my inquiry about Justice for Pons Etc.

  11. Eldering_G

    August 31, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    Admin, thank you for a frank and revealing post. You state: “And yet, on launch day, the device ‘broke’ and all those people who came from various parts of the globe, spending thousands of dollars on fares and hotels, had to be happy with a few beers with Sean. I had a great time.” No demo …, and still you had a great time. It’s what makes this E-cat story fascinating. It’s my daily soap series, with cliffhangers like: will Rossi finish his reactor in time, will it run as advertised? Will there be a day of conversion for Maryyugo, or the total breakdown of georgehants? If it comes to nothing, I had a great time following the story. If however it’s a success I will have been a close witness to one of the greatest inventions of the last fifty years. I hope for the best, but there are a lot of indicators pointing in the other direction. Let’s wait and see. If you want, you can call me a pseudolurker 🙂

    • maryyugo

      August 31, 2011 at 4:46 pm

      “Will there be a day of conversion for Maryyugo?”

      No there won’t, Eldering –not really. My philosophy if the E-cat works is the same as if it doesn’t. Show me the evidence and if it’s adequate, I will believe it. That won’t change whether the E-cat works or not.

      • LCD

        August 31, 2011 at 8:18 pm

        You have no discernible philosophy other than to spout out nonsense that a 10 year old with access to google can refute like a 30 year veteran.

        • Stephen

          September 2, 2011 at 7:48 am

          LCD, please explain what you mean by “a 30 year veteran”? Thanks.

  12. LCD

    August 31, 2011 at 8:51 pm

    To george
    Here is my two cents on Justice for Pons and Fleis…
    If the ecat is successfully demonstrated then I think younger scientists would have every right to go to their older counterparts and demand an explanation as to why something like this happened on their watch? How was it that you let good science go un-noticed. I think that movement would lead to an investigation of MIT’s alleged false data, which played a big role in the witch hunt.

    Regardless of the outcome of the investigation MIT should be socially forced to apologize to the scientific community and F&P in particular for social injustices.

    Finally I think that in due time a nobel prize to the pair should be awarded for efforts made to the field.

    Note this is if Rossi or anybody successfully proves LENR to the world.

    Also I should note that to a certain extent, SPAWAR has already proven that F&P were on to something so justice has really already been served in a small dose.

  13. Tony

    September 1, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    I’m surprised that I don’t find anybody bringing up the Genesis World Energy scam of a few years ago. Their mo looked just like this. License the tech out by region; increase jobs; etc. Same kind of big claims, same kind of secrecy.