Andrea Rossi: Breakthrough to clean cheap energy via ‘E-Cat’ LENR (cold fusion) catalyser!

Posted: May 29, 2011 by tallbloke in Energy, Nuclear power
Tags: , ,

The nuclear world is all abuzz over this invention. A nuclear reaction which leaves no waste. It uses a catalyst (possibly aluminium)  and a patented process to convert Nickel and Hydrogen to Copper, releasing a lot of energy in the process. 1MW system due to come online in November in Greece, this is exciting stuff.

The blog seems pretty busy: 934 comments and counting

A few more details, but see the first link for more complete information.

Tests and demonstrations have been carried out, the process succesfully generated 1.5 Kw while requiring an energy input of only 80W, sometimes dropping to 20W. It looks like there may have been a replication in America too.

If this is the real deal, the implications are enormous. Nickel is relatively abundant, and if the catalysing agent is too, then there would be a stampede to license the process and generate commercially. Prices as low as 1 cent per Kw are being discussed. You can be sure it will cost the consumer a good deal more though…

Clearly, a clean power production process with no dangerous residues and no emissions of unpleasant substances such as sulphur dioxide, thorium or fine particulates would be of huge benefit. No co2 emissions would make those who believe in it’s power to dangerously affect Earth’s climates should be happy too.

I’ll have a hunt around for some schematics to brighten the post up with. Meanwhile, some youtube links:  In italian. Maybe Michele can help with a couple of the more important points?

Description of test carried out at Bologna University this January
The date in the title seems to be a typo, should be 2011 not 2001

Translation of interview (validated by Rossi) with blogger Daniele Passerini
Rossi prefers to  his process a ‘Low Energy Nuclear Reaction’ rather then ‘cold fusion’.

More validation, from the Swedish sceptics society, plus better descriptions and photos.

Ric Werme was already on this one back in January – 330 comment WUWT post here:

A lot of comments on this post at physorg:

  1. Tim Channon says:

    Be wary of the links in the article, bad people and blacklisted domains are very close.

  2. tallbloke says:

    Good find Tim. It’s good to see that the author has a sceptical but open minded approach.

  3. @Tim Channon says:
    From the link you gave:
    The nature of the catalyst has not been disclosed. This prevents attempts to replicate the experiments, or to discuss the topic theoretically.
    That catalyst is aluminum: Blacklight Power uses a nickel-aluminum alloy:
    Common reaction between NaOH and Aluminum:
    sodium aluminate
    Al + NaOH + H2O = NaAlO2 + 3H (1)

    But they obtain Sodium Hydride, that would be like this:
    sodium hydride
    2Al + NaOH + 2H2O= NaH + Al2O3 + 3H (1a)

    and, to allow the reaction reach its next step, there must be a reduction reaction:

    Al2O3 + 6H = Al + 3H2O (2)
    Which, in turn, it is produced by decomposing H2O with electricity.

  4. Michele says:

    Italian video :
    Professors say : “The setup/reactor is a secret … ”

    I think …..
    How much is it ?

    “… Any revolution wishes to break slavery chains but when these chains are broken, another ones already ready. Since cave times nothing has changed and never will change, because the most artful, frequently the most corrupt always will impose himself to others. And depending on mood of the people, he will put on himself dictatorship or democracy clothes. But the person always will be the slave even if imagines that is free… Once, maybe, and to revive the free person, but the people always will be the slave”.

  5. tallbloke says:

    Good work Adolfo!

    I asked Dr Rossi about the catalyst on his blog. Here’s his brief reply.

    Andrea Rossi
    May 30th, 2011 at 7:49 AM
    Dear Mr Roger Tallbloke:
    The catalysts are available.
    Warm Regards,

    If it’s aluminium, then no problems with availability, given that bauxite is one of the most common minerals on the planet.
    So, Nickel: plentiful. Hydrogen: plentiful. Aluminium: plentiful.

  6. tallbloke says:

    The components of the reactor are not too difficult to make, the materials for the reaction are easy to obtain. I think I will ask Dr Rossi how much is a unit, or a license to make one myself. 🙂

  7. Michele says:

    @ tallbloke


  8. Zeke the Sneak says:

    “Rossi was using a nickel catalyst to explore ways of making a fuel by combining hydrogen and carbon monoxide and apparently, observed quite by accident, that his [apparatus] was making extra energy. So then he explored it from that point of view and, apparently, over a year or two, amplified the effect.

    He’s exploring the gas loading area of the field. This is also a region, a method used in the heavy water, or the heavy hydrogen, system. But in this case, it was light hydrogen, ordinary hydrogen and nickel and what happens is quite amazing.

    You create the right conditions in the nickel, and he has a secret method for doing that, and all you do is add hydrogen to it and it makes huge amounts of energy based upon a nuclear reaction.””

    This is incredible work, and I have no question that these effects are ready to go online, since the Navy has announced it has confirmed LENR in 2009. What is most interesting to me is that Rossi is not working with deuterium and palladium, but has by accident discovered that he can use common elements. I would love to read about this accident! At any rate, my only guess is that he has discovered a “near field” antenna effect which hits the right harmonic in the nickel.

  9. Zeke the Sneak says:

    Now we find out how politicized the patent process is.

    Minor patent printing violations are already being used to fine and penalize small businesses all over the country. One of hundreds of examples of a new law involves an agregious case against small company that produces suspender buckles, sued for having left a patent number on its buckles for too long.

    I read an article about blacklight power in which a scientist laments the patent was given to Dr Mills for lowering the state of hydrogen. He said “We didn’t realize what it was.” I am sorry not to provide the link, but this was the gist of the comment.

  10. @Zeke the Sneak says:
    May 30, 2011 at 7:14 pm
    This thing would eventually endanger the already established politicians´windmills market 🙂

  11. @Zeke: BTW Windmills remind us of politicians: Almost useless but making a lot of noise 🙂

  12. Zeke the Sneak says:

    Adolfo says; “BTW Windmills remind us of politicians: Almost useless but making a lot of noise”

    Yes and to paraphrase: every normal person who sees them must be tempted at least once to spit on his hands, hoist a black flag, and begin the beheadings!

    Of the windmills that is. cough cough. 😀

  13. Tenuc says:

    Based on the limited information available, I’m very sceptical that this will ever become a major part of future energy production mix. Until a good theoretical understanding of the underlying physics is developed, scaling and safety issues will make development slow and difficult.

    @Adolfo… “I absolutely love windmills. I guess you could call me a big fan”… 🙂

  14. tallbloke says:

    “Windmills remind us of politicians: Almost useless but making a lot of noise ”

    While waving their arms around.

  15. Allan Kiik says:

    In Rossi-Focardi paper, on page 7 there is a statement: “Nevertheless we have an experimental evidence of a large energy that can only arise from nuclear reactions between Nickel and Hydrogen, the only two elements existing in our apparatus.”
    Swedes (Essen/Kullander) have analyzed used nickel powder and they did not find any other elements (only iron, about what Rossi told it’s a contamination from reactor walls), so it looks like there’s no “secret catalyzer” as different element/substance but only modified isotopic composition – it’s depleted on Ni58 and enriched with Ni62 and Ni64. In latest comments, Rossi has confirmed that only these two isotopes are reacting in his device.

    There are some theoretical considerations provided by some italian physicists on Rossi’s blog but none of them contains any plausible explanation about how the reaction initially starts up. Rossi promised (in earlier comments) to make some tests deep underground, to see if his reaction is sensitive to high-energy cosmic rays, mostly muons, who have been showed by Sakharov to be able to catalyze cold fusion.

    And it’s not accidental discovery, see early work by Piantelli for example, they have started this research soon after Fleishmann-Pons.

  16. tallbloke says:

    Hi Allan, and welcome to the talkshop.
    In his interview with Daniele Passerini, Rossi states that he began his research on his ‘catalyser’ two years before Fleishmann-Pons published.

    “22PASSI. Good day Eng. Rossi, I thank you for accepting this interview. Everybody is asking themselves how you did manage to perfect your Energy Catalyzer? Somebody even suspects that you stole the idea, for example, from Professor [Francesco] Piantelli from the University of Siena, who in the 1990s worked together with Professor [Sergio] Focardi on “cold fusion” research. Could you explain us where, why, how and where you started working to this project?

    ROSSI. I started in 1987. As facts show, my process strongly differs from previous efforts: nobody has managed to manufacture a working device so far. Facts count, not words.

    22PASSI. 1987 would mean two years before the strongly disputed Pons-Fleischmann experiment.

  17. Allan Kiik says:

    Looks like Rossi changes his story continuously, in some early comments he told us that he started the E-cat research few years ago by reading all published work by others (especially Piantelli and Focardy in the 90-s). I don’t think he can provide any evidence about his cold fusion work preceding Pons and Fleischmann.

  18. Allan Kiik says:

    Who started Ni-H research? Looks like it was Piantelli, few months after F-P press conference.

    Click to access Cold_Fusion_Italy.pdf

    At page 171 we can read:
    “The research in the field of nickel – hydrogen systems started from an
    experimental observation by F. Piantelli at the end of 1989 concerning a
    strange thermal effect at low temperature in a sample of nickel with
    hydrogen. Piantelli spoke of this effect to his friends S. Focardi and R.
    Habel during the SIF congress in Trento (October 1990). They decided to
    experimentally verify the observed phenomenon, which had been
    obtained in a context completely different from the electrochemical one of
    Fleischmann, Hawkins and Pons (J. Electroanal. Chem. 261, 301 (1989))
    and with completely different working hypothesis which cannot be taken
    back to be CF or electroweak interactions (EWI);”…

  19. tallbloke says:

    Hi Allan,
    good info, thanks. I guess it’s who dares wins in the kind of cutting edge work they are engaged in. At the end of the day, generating serious amounts of power will decide who is the winner here I think.

  20. Gregg says:

    We should soon see if a marketable product can be economically manufactured.
    An American company has recently licensed the Italian E-Cat LENR (aka cold fusion) technology. The name of the company is Leonardo Technologies and it is being run by an ex Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy at DOE (Bush appointee) named Robert H. Gentile. They have over $90M in DOE consulting contracts, so seem to be well connected politically. Robert Gentile appears to be of Italian descent. Coincidentally, the Italian inventor of the cold fusion technology, Andrea Rossi, is a co-founder of Leonardo Technologies.

    Here’s their website:

    One important thing that I noticed on their web site is a recent particularly large donation of the following: “LTI announced a sizeable donation of a directional solidification furnace to the Montana State University – Bozeman College of Engineering. This equipment was custom-designed to develop novel crystalline materials for use in solid-state thermoelectric energy conversion systems.”

    Obviously, this solid state crystalline material could directly convert heat from the cold fusion device to electrical energy, which is a way to make this invention more useful and economically viable.

    Also, here’s a little more information on more recent testing of the E-Cat device:

  21. […] I have a good feeling about this process, which I blogged back in May, but that’s all it is. We have too little data to be able to judge at this point. Andrea […]