Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
About New Energy Science and Technology
New Energy Foundation
This Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
covers basic queries about New Energy science and developing technologies.
The revolutionary New Energy field concerns spectacular new sources
of energy that have achieved substantial validation in laboratories
around the world, but which are not yet accepted by the scientific
establishment. We welcome you to make your own judgment about
what constitutes substantial validation and why the scientific
establishment does not yet accept New Energy in its various forms,
but please do perform your own examination of the important
evidence that is gathered at this and other referenced New Energy
websites and publications. Despite the great accomplishments of
modern official science, we have concluded that its organizations
and journals are significantly mired in obsolete science and technology
paradigms that are holding back progress; we hope that you will
come to appreciate this. (If, in fact, that is not your opinion
already!) The existence of New Energy R&D around the world and
its under-reporting and mis-characterization by the "mainstream"
scientific media is evidence of a profound paradigm paralysis.
If you are new to the New Energy
field, you may find the information here particularly helpful.
We will continue to review and modify this FAQ to include responses
to common questions from our visitors. If you have a question
and the answer isn't here, please ask us and we'll try to answer
you if the question brings up new thoughts not already addressed
in this FAQ. Please understand that we cannot respond to all
of our e-mail, due to limited staff time! For the most comprehensive
information on current research, published papers, patents, business
developments, outside media coverage, and government actions (and
inaction), we recommend subscribing
to Infinite Energy magazine. By subscribing or purchasing
Infinite Energy magazine at one of many newsstands in the
United States and Canada, you will be helping to increase support
for this field. You may download a free selection
of Infinite Energy articles [Download
Selection of Articles (.pdf)] to
give you an idea of what we cover and how we report on it. Infinite
Energy is published by the non-profit New Energy Foundation, which is based in Concord, New Hampshire. We hope that this
FAQ and the free selection of articles will encourage you to subscribe
to Infinite Energy and to contribute charitably (and tax-deductibly)
to our efforts.
Questions About Cold Fusion
(Condensed Matter Nuclear Science (CMNS); Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions (LENR); "Hydrino" Energy; New Hydrogen Energy, etc.)
Download David Nagel's "Questions and Answers About Lattice-Enabled Nuclear Reactions," which is a great companion to our FAQ section.
Questions About Vacuum
(Zero Point Energy (ZPE); Aether Energy;
Space Energy; Orgone Energy)
Questions About Environmental Energy
Extensions to and Revisions of
the Second Law of Thermodynamics
Answers to General Questions
What is New Energy and what are its
In this FAQ we capitalize the term New Energy
for emphasis, so that it will not be confused with the general expression
"new energy," which depends on one's perspective about
what is "new." New Energy is the term applied to new sources
of energy that are currently not recognized as feasible by the "scientific
establishment," but for which compelling evidence and
in some cases overwhelming evidence exists in at least three
1. New hydrogen physics energy (a.k.a. "cold
fusion," more generally Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions or LENR,
"hydrino" physics, and other water-based energy sources)
energy release far beyond the normal chemical energy of hydrogen-oxygen
combustion (up to millions of times beyond).
2. Vacuum energy (Zero Point Energy or "ZPE,"
Aether energy, or Space energy) descriptions of vast energy
sources from the vacuum state.
3. Environmental energy, i.e. energy from sensible
thermal energy (in particular, the energy of molecular motion),
through significant extensions to the Second Law of Thermodynamics
the supposedly "impossible" extraction of energy from
a single temperature reservoir.
[Back to Top]
New Hydrogen Physics Energy
"Cold Fusion," or more generically Low-Energy Nuclear
Reactions (LENR), is the large, worldwide field of scientific investigation
devoted to the work launched by Drs. Fleischmann and Pons with their
announcement at the University of Utah on March 23, 1989. This area
of New Energy is among the most widely explored and verified of
the new energy sources. See, for example, the technical paper resources
at: www.lenr-canr.org or at http://world.std.com/~mica/cft.html.
Evidence for LENR consists of substantial nuclear-magnitude
excess heat (more heat output than other energy input, and far beyond
ordinary chemical explanation) in electrochemical cells, gas-phase
cells, ultrasonically activated cells, solid state devices in hydrogen
gas, etc. There is also evidence of a surprising variety of nuclear
products: helium, where no such helium gas levels existed before
the experiments; tritium (a radioactive isotope of hydrogen); low
levels of neutrons; charged particle emissions; gamma rays; transmutation
of heavy metals to become other metals. (Yes, this sounds like "modern
alchemy" and it is!) Dr. Randell Mills, now of the BlackLight
Power Corporation in New Jersey (www.blacklightpower.com),
prior to the Fleischmann-Pons announcement pioneered a theory of
"Classical Quantum Mechanics" that allows hydrogen's electron
to drop below the conventionally understood ground-state level and
thus release energy, leaving what he calls "shrunken"
hydrogen or a "hydrino." Triggered by the Pons-Fleischmann
announcement, Mills developed a catalytic process-using other elements
in contact with the hydrogen-to release this energy. Mills and his
associates, who are pioneering a variety of emerging technologies
and new forms of matter ("hydrino hydrides"), do not agree
that the excess heat in "cold fusion" comes from nuclear
reactions. On the other hand, some cold fusion researchers report
the accurate correlation of helium product with excess heat in what
amount to essentially radiationless nuclear reactions. We are talking
about different albeit related experiments. Hydrogen in exotic environments
is the common theme, and there is common ground in many of these
"cold fusion" and "hydrino" experiments. We
believe that the diverse data will ultimately lead to a comprehensive
and unified physical understanding, which may even incorporate findings
from another form of New Energy research "vacuum energy."
[Back to Top]
This is a very controversial area of New Energy research, even within
the paradigm-breaking New Energy field. The central idea is that
what we normally think of as the vacuum of space itself can be tapped
for energy! Nonetheless, vacuum energy is very real, based on robust
experiments and devices that we have observed and measured. Like
new hydrogen physics energy, it also has a variety of carefully
conceived theoretical explanations behind it-not all of which can
be correct. In many respects, Vacuum Energy is on as solid ground
as New Hydrogen Physics Energy-provided that the appropriate information
and devices within this field are accessed. There is, indeed, much
misinformation floating around. The field of vacuum energy actually
predates the Fleischmann-Pons work by many years, but ultimately
this area of physics may provide part of a crucial understanding
of what is going on in New Hydrogen Physics Energy.
However, the large field of claimed devices
that appear to work as "perpetual motion machines," with
no apparent fuel, not even hydrogen, is also the area of
New Energy that is most fraught with uncertainties about which devices
work and which ones do not. There is a range of quality from highly
competent and scientifically credible work to incompetence in measurement;
and, there are cases of probable outright fraud. The basic conceptual
framework of vacuum energy is that the so-called "vacuum"
of space is not really a vacuum at all, i.e. there is no such thing
as "nothingness" or a true "void." What we normally
think of as a vacuum (a space devoid of particles with mass) is
actually pulsating with energy that can be exhibited in experiments
and tapped in technological devices. The term most often associated
with this energy is Zero Point Energy, or "ZPE" for short.
This comes from standard quantum mechanics theory, which says that
"quantum fluctuations" in a "space-time electromagnetic
foam" of an extremely small granular size (far below the size
of atoms) form a jiggling field of energy. An excellent research
compendium on the Zero Point Energy viewpoint about vacuum energy
is the book by Moray B. King , Quest for Zero-Point Energy: Engineering
Principles for "Free Energy" (2001) [order
from our catalog].
Another radically different perspective on vacuum
energy has led, beginning in the mid-1980s, to prototype technological
devices that generate electricity and motive power from the vacuum,
devices which we have personally examined on-site. The theoretical
model is not "ZPE," but rather a pervading massfree form of energy that can exhibit electrical properties, as well as
anti-gravitational properties, and which can also convert to massbound (ordinary mass) forms under the proper circumstances. This line
of investigation originated with the work of Nikola Tesla (1856-1943),
the pioneer of our present electrical power generating grid of alternating
current (and the recognized original inventor of radio), and with
the controversial biomedical scientist Dr. Wilhelm Reich (1897-1957),
who experimented in mid-20th Century with what he called "orgone"
energy. It turns out that both Tesla and Reich had remarkably accurate
things to say about a dynamic ether (or aether), the static "luminiferous ether" form of which was rejected by 20th
Century physics as a carrier of light waves, following the ascendancy
of Einstein's relativity theories. Unfortunately, because of major
theoretical errors that have entered modern physics and pervade
it, an energetic, dynamic ether with properties measurable in
the laboratory was overlooked. The work of Dr. Paulo and Alexandra
Correa of Canada (www.aetherometry.com and www.aethera.org)
has built on and apparently has validated the stream of aether physics
work that was begun by Tesla and Reich.
Yet another researcher of some prominence in vacuum
energy is Tom Bearden, whose book, Energy from the Vacuum,
appeared in 2002 (www.cheniere.org).
He and his associates have developed and patented a so-called Motionless
Electromagnetic Generator (MEG), of whose testing validation we
are not yet sure. Still another researcher important to vacuum energy
is Kenneth Shoulders, (http://www.svn.net/krscfs)
whose well-known, patented "high density charge cluster"
science and technology has impressed a host of investigators. Shoulders
has found ways to generate microscopic, dense, moving clusters of
millions of electrons, which conventional physics understanding
says should not be able to exist because of intense electrical repulsion.
[Back to Top]
This is the least prominent of the New Energy sources, the one that
has the smallest group of pioneering scientists and inventors, but
it is potentially one of the most important areas of New Energy
technologies. Its experimenters and proponents cast significant
doubt on the universal validity of the Second Law of Thermodynamics,
which for over 150 years has proclaimed that it is impossible to
extract useful work from the thermal motion of atoms and molecules
using only a single temperature reservoir with no lower
temperature reservoir to which to exhaust waste heat. Some of this
research has been reviewed and discussed at length in articles in Infinite Energy (Issues, #29, #37, and #43),
but a recent landmark paper by physicists and a mathematician at
the University of San Diego ("A Solid-State Maxwell Demon," Foundations of Physics, Vol.32, pp.1557-1595, October 2002, www.kluweronline.com),
seems to offer nearly conclusive proof that devices that do create
work from a single temperature reservoir can be built. The paper
proposes a laboratory-testable, solid-state device that uses the
electric field energy of an open-gap p-n junction semiconductor
device to drive a solid-state mechanical piston. The authors used
numerical results from a commercial semiconductor device simulator
to verify their analytical model. They describe the proposed device
as a "thermally rechargeable capacitor which, in this incarnation,
is used to power a linear electrostatic motor." Thus, all the
thermal energy in the environment in the air, water, and solid
earth can be converted to useful work, if the environmental
energy advocates are correct, as we strongly believe they are, based
on our own thorough examination of this field, including our own
laboratory experiments. (Patents for devices invented by Kenneth
Rauen, based upon these 100% repeatable laboratory effects, have
been applied for under a for-profit corporation.)
[Back to Top]
What are the advantages of New Energy
over conventional renewable energy?
Like conventional renewable energy technologies—such
as solar power and wind power—the cost of the “fuel” for New Energy
technologies is zero or effectively zero (e.g., the cost
of extracting heavy water from ordinary water to use in LENR processes
is minute compared to the value of the energy released). In both
conventional renewable energy technologies and in New Energy technologies,
there are costs associated with the initial capital expense of the
equipment, maintenance items, etc. However, New Energy technologies
are not dependent on whether the Sun is up or on weather conditions.
(Obviously, some conventional renewables, such as geothermal energy,
do not have weather or sunlight-related constraints.) The great
advantage of New Energy technologies, however, is that they are
inherently compact and concentrated— small units
can be made to provide a source of power anywhere— such as
in homes and offices and including installation in transportation
vehicles (cars, trains, ships, airplanes, and space vehicles).
Enough is already known about the various New Energy devices now
on the drawing boards to realize that their capital cost per watt
will be substantially less than for large arrays of solar cells
or farms of wind-powered generators, as examples.
Like conventional renewables, there will be
either zero or vanishingly small pollution associated with the use
of New Energy devices. In some of the New Hydrogen Physics Energy
devices, questions might arise concerning very low levels of radiation
emitted, the effects of escaped “hydrinos,” and transmutations of
metals within the devices. However, there is every reason to believe
that even these New Hydrogen Physics Energy devices, which alter
the structure of atoms within them, will be able to be designed
to be completely safe. Vacuum Energy devices and Environmental Energy
devices would have, by definition, zero pollution.
What will the world be like in the New
[Back to Top]
The post-Hydrocarbon Fuel Age will be unrecognizable
to people alive today. Central station power plants belching smoke
and harmful gases will be a thing of the past: there will be no power
grid. The grid will gradually wither and die during the transition
to distributed New Energy devices, which could be as rapid
and dramatic as the transition to the personal computer/Internet era
that began in the mid-1970s. Pollution caused by hydrocarbon-fuel
combustion will be a thing of the past. In a world of effectively
free energy (no significant recurring costs for the energy), all the
world’s populations will become richer. People will be able to be
much more self-reliant, unchained from central controlling authorities
that today rule energy use. (Governments will continue to try to tax
and control the use of energy, but they will fail—as they have failed
so far in trying to tax the Internet.) It will be possible to build
self-contained dwellings and communities anywhere that construction
materials can be brought in—in forests, atop mountains, on remote
islands, on the surface of bodies of water, and even on ocean or lake
floors! There will be no geographic localization of fuel resources
(such as in the Middle East today), so the fight over oil will disappear
as one underlying cause of conflict and war. Cheap desalination and
water pumping will make deserts bloom. It will be extremely cheap
to produce clean, potable water anywhere. Agriculture will profoundly
change, as New Energy makes available anywhere: fertilizer, light,
heat, cooling, and shelter from insect pests. Transportation disasters
in which people are burned alive by hydrocarbon fuels will be an unimaginable
nightmare of the past; no one will think of carrying such explosive
substances on fast-moving vehicles! Through discoveries already made
in the LENR field, it will be possible to remediate existing nuclear
waste— reduce it to non-radioactive forms. And, shocking but almost
certain to happen, it will be possible to produce rare elements cheaply
through LENR reactions— yes, an age of “modern alchemy” will emerge.
The inexorable increase in Earth’s population will
come to an end as all peoples become richer and smarter. The new
physics ratified by the New Energy devices—based on concrete, repeatable
experimental results, not on the absurd fictions of present day
archaic mainstream physics theories—will dramatically increase
the ease of space travel in ways that are foreseeable today. Terrestrial
civilization will spread into the Solar System and beyond. We will
become a true spacefaring civilization, whose destiny will be the
stars. Finally, new knowledge about biology and medicine, gleaned
from the new insights on biophysical energies that can be shown experimentally to pervade space (the aether), may radically improve health. A revolution
in medicine is already in the making in some of the now proved-as-effective
complementary medicine. Complementary medicine, its modalities that do work, will gain a proper grounding in the physics and biology
of nature that present physics does not address. These new views of
life will alter human perceptions about our true nature and those
other living beings with whom we share this planet. A Copernican-magnitude
revolution in philosophical outlook is inevitable in the New Energy
[Back to Top]
Will the present electric power-grid eventually
Yes. Most certainly, it will wither and
die. Gone will be unsightly overhead wires. Gone will be the expense
associated with maintaining the grid—a large percentage of what we
pay today for electricity. Gone will be power outages during storms.
Gone will be accidental electrocutions of workers who maintain the
grid. Gone will be the need to have residential or commercial properties
sited near an electrical power grid pole or node.
How difficult will it be to retrofit a
home or business with New Energy technologies?
It will be very easy. The wiring in the house
or office that distributes electricity to lighting, outlets, and other
devices, can remain in place. The New Energy electric power generator,
which is expected to be not much bigger (and it may be even smaller)
than a typical home furnace today, will be placed somewhere in the
basement, outside, or in the living quarters of the residence or business.
It will be attached to the electrical panel where electric power is
admitted to the house today. New Energy heating devices will simply
replace existing furnaces, if the present ones are oil, gas, wood,
or coal-based, but the air, water, or steam lines that distribute
heat within the house can remain in place. Cooling devices, such
as air conditioners, will, like furnaces, simply be replaced—the cool
air distribution will occur with the existing ductwork. Some items
within the home may have their own built-in New Energy devices. For
example, it may be that personal computers will come equipped with
their own power sources that never need replacement during the lifetime
of the product.
[Back to Top]
Won’t the advent of New Energy technologies
terribly upset the world economy?
The world economy will change dramatically with
the advent of New Energy, as it has every time new technologies are
introduced, such as the printing press, the steam engine, photography,
distributed electricity, electric lighting, automobiles, airplanes,
radio, television, nuclear energy, space travel, communications satellites,
personal computers, the laser, and the Internet. However, because
of the central role of energy in all areas of human activity—in the
provision of heated and cooled shelter, lighting, food, clean water,
transportation, and power for manufacturing—the New Energy revolution
will have a much more dramatic impact on the world economy. It will
be one of the most profound changes in human history— rather akin
to the taming of fire. Initially, when the first high-profile, ready-for-production
New Energy device is announced, there will likely be a very big shock
to stock markets and prices of fuel. But the world will become much
the better, after this initial upset has passed. Now that you know about this possibility, you can begin to think about preparing
financially for the coming transition.
[Back to Top]
Will there still be a market for hydrocarbon
fuels in the New Energy Age?
In the New Energy Age, there will still be a market
for hydrocarbon substances (oil, natural gas, even coal), at least
for a time. These will be used in the chemical industries to make
plastics and in many other industrial processes in which these substances
have value as feedstocks. However, since the cost of generating energy
will effectively drop to zero (once the capital costs of equipment
are paid), it will be possible to use the carbon from the carbon dioxide
in Earth’s atmosphere, and the hydrogen from water, as basic ingredients
to form hydrocarbon substances—this will become cheaper than transporting
hydrocarbon substances across oceans, as an example.
Are there now any New Energy devices on
the market that generate electricity or produce heat and cooling?
All New Energy devices—for generating electricity, heat, and cooling—are
currently in the research and prototype development stage. You cannot
buy one of these experimental devices—yet— from anyone. That could
change at any time. When it does, the worldwide interest in prospective
utilitarian New Energy technologies will ramp up considerably, since
it will then be very clear to many scientists, technologists, and
investors (who are now far too skeptical) that this science and technology
is for real. The New Energy Foundation hopes to play a significant
role in getting these prototype demonstration devices on market.
[Back to Top]
Are there experiments that can be performed
by serious, technically inclined amateurs—technicians, engineers,
scientists in other fields, and students—to demonstrate new energy?
Yes, but these experiments must be done with care,
patience, and understanding.
• In the area of New Hydrogen Energy Physics, Dr. Edmund Storms (Los Alamos National Laboratory, retired), a pioneer experimenter in the cold fusion field, has published "How to Produce the Fleischmann-Pons Effect."
• Dr. Randell L. Mills and S.P. Kneizys published
a comprehensive pioneering paper in 1991, “Excess Heat Production
by the Electrolysis of an Aqueous Potassium Carbonate Electrolyte
and the Implications for Cold Fusion,“ Fusion Technology, Vol.20,
August 1991, pp.65-81. This paper has explicit instructions
for producing excess heat in experimental apparatus with a variety
of sizes. Fusion Technology can be examined at many university
engineering or science libraries. NASA scientists reproduced this
work and reported their positive findings in NASA Technical Memorandum
107167, February 1996. This NASA publication was reprinted in Infinite
Energy, #7,pp.62-69. These references are probably the best way
to begin to explore excess heat phenomenon in ordinary water solutions.
• In the area of Vacuum Energy, a huge body of
experiments to measure the characteristics of the aether is provided
by Dr. Paulo and Alexandra Correa on www.aetherometry.com.
These experiments involve simple sheet metal boxes, called Faraday
cages, accurate mercury thermometers, commercially available gold-leaf
electroscopes, oscilloscopes, Tesla coils (also commercially available),
and other rather simple laboratory equipment. The simplest experiment
to carry out involves measuring the astounding thermal difference
that can be detected between nearby air and the zone slightly above
a Faraday cage surface in a darkened room. This experiment, with
extensive controls, was described in detail by the Correas in “The
Reproducible Thermal Anomaly of the Reich-Einstein Experiment Under
Limit Conditions,” Infinite Energy, #37, pp.12-21. A guide
to other aether-measurement experiments is to be found in Eugene Mallove’s
review of the Correa work posted on their site, “The Correa Science
and Technology: An Appreciation.” It designates which of their downloadable
monographs have hands-on experiments that can be performed.
[Back to Top]
When will the “New Energy Age” begin?
In some sense it has begun already, given the quickening
pace of a diverse group of technologies that are under development.
The New Energy Age will accelerate dramatically as soon as a pre-production
prototype New Energy device emerges that is “anointed”—unequivocally
declared to be real in the judgment of a major mainstream media
outlet, such as Time, Newsweek, Business Week,
a major daily newspaper, or a major television network. Sad to say,
it will require such media recognition before society begins to move
in a big way! In the meantime, the science and technology proceeds
without widespread media acclaim— apart from the occasional favorable
article, which still does not declare that the particular New Energy
source has been established to be real with zero doubt. Wild times
will ensue when a major publication does declare a New Energy device
to be indisputably real. A media frenzy of almost unparalleled
magnitude will then rock the global psyche. If the Fleischmann-Pons
effect had been robust and easily reproducible—it was not—the New
Energy Age would have gotten into full swing in 1989. If the U.S.
Department of Energy report on cold fusion in 1989 had been balanced,
not a reckless rush to an unethical, negative judgment—as it most
certainly was—a widely recognized scientific revolution would have
occurred in the early 1990s. The New Energy Age would by now be well
under way. Citizens of the world can “thank” the U.S. Department
of Energy’s ERAB (Energy Research Advisory Board) report for this
[Back to Top]
How is New Energy R&D being funded?
Given the importance and reality of New Energy,
a huge amount of investment money, by right, would now be flowing
into the field. It is not. By and large, potential investors and government
agencies are not convinced. Therefore, the general media have not
been convinced about New Energy —and ignore it or ridicule it. Money
talks! And when there is little or no money in something, the media
do not talk about it. It is a vicious Catch-22: insufficient R&D
funding to bring about the robust new Energy devices necessary
to make a breakthrough with the general media, which coverage would,
in turn, prompt the funding required to develop the robust devices.
Despite this terrible, illogical circumstance, exceptionally good
people and groups have, indeed, invested in New Energy already. Here
are some of the higher profile cases, but this is not to be
taken as a comprehensive list— the funding situation is in flux:
• The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI)
put at least $6 million into cold fusion work, mostly at SRI International,
until the mid-1990s. EPRI published a final report confirming the
Fleischmann-Pons discovery. EPRI is the research arm of most of the
U.S. electric utility industry. Dr. Michael McKubre’s group at SRI
International has continued to work on cold fusion/LENR through selected
grants from advanced military research groups and from Japanese and
• The patented Patterson power cell technology
in the LENR area received self-funding from Dr. James Patterson and
several private investors, but Clean Energy Technologies, Inc. of
Sarasota, Florida fell into hard times for reasons unrelated to the
validity of the basic patented technology. (A significant buy-out
offer, reportedly $15 million, was tendered by Motorola in the mid-1990s,
but the offer was not accepted.)
• The U.S. Navy funded several cold fusion efforts
at a handful of federal laboratories since 1989. In 2002, the U.S.
Navy published a positive report, encouraging new research to be funded.
• Several investors funded ENECO of Salt Lake City,
for its LENR work, which has now been put on hold. That company has
now moved into the area of patented advanced thermal energy conversion
• Dr. Mitchell R. Swartz, of Jet Technology in
Massachusetts, has primarily self-funded his own cold fusion/LENR
work — as well as a monumental effort to overcome patenting obstacles
at the USPTO.
• Dr. Les Case, of Fusion Power, Inc. in New Hampshire,
has pioneered and self-funded one of the most impressive forms of
LENR reactions, gas phase “catalytic fusion,” a process which has
been confirmed at SRI International.
• Privately-held BlackLight Power Corporation,
of Cranbury, New Jersey, has received by far the largest investment
influx from several power companies and many private investors— an
estimated $10 to $30 million. There continue to be reports of an
• Since 1987, Dr. Paulo and Alexandra Correa have
expended some $1.2 million of their own funding into developing their
patented Pulsed Abnormal Glow Discharge (PAGDTM)
reactor technologies, which generate electrical power and drive special
types of spinner electric motors.
• China, France, India, Italy, Japan, and Russia
each have their own way of funding New Energy research in the LENR
area. Italy at present seems to have the most actively funded program.
Several Italian corporations pursue active R&D programs. Similar
corporate funding exists in Japan (e.g. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Advanced Technologies Center), and university professors in Japan
continue to pioneer in cold fusion research. A large, mis-managed
research effort was launched by Japan’s MITI government agency, the
so-called “New Hydrogen Energy” (NHE) program. It was abandoned in
the mid-1990s after an estimated $30 million expenditure. Though
many scientists in that program continue their research, the ending
of the official funding has been used in anti-cold fusion attacks.
• Dr. Daniel Cavicchio and Dr. Eugene Mallove
helped launch the New Energy Partners, LLC investment fund for New
Energy, which did manage to raise funding for several of the struggling
cold fusion companies. This NEP initiative is currently in a holding
• Various philanthropic individuals, such as former
heads of a few U.S. corporations, supported and in some cases continue
to support Cold Fusion and other New Energy projects. Other individuals
with high technology backgrounds have selectively invested in New
Energy technologies, quietly and privately.
• The non-profit (501c3) corporation, New Energy Foundation, was founded by Dr. Eugene Mallove and colleagues
in New Hampshire in late 2002. It is intended to help fund New Energy
R&D worldwide through select grants to New Energy scientists and
companies. New Energy Foundation will also help support publication
efforts (such as Infinite Energy magazine) and books, New Energy
conferences (such as the 10th International
Conference on Cold Fusion, ICCF10— Cambridge, MA, August 24-29,
2003), and other pro-active New Energy efforts. (www.infinite-energy.com).
[Back to Top]
What is the best way to invest in New Energy
As with any other investment, first and foremost
one must be properly informed. The resources of this website and
links to other sites are an important good beginning. A subscription
to Infinite Energy, with its careful following of New Energy
R&D work, and sudden claims and counter-claims for this and that
“device,” would be extremely useful (and could help avoid a mistaken
investment!). The New Energy Foundation and its New Energy Research
Laboratory (NERL) stand ready to assist potential investors in determining
whether a particular opportunity brought to the prospective investor’s
attention by third parties has validity and other merit— not always
an easy matter to determine, as we have found.
If I am a student planning to be in
science or engineering and would like to work in the New Energy field,
what courses should I take and in what fields would it be best to
It would be most useful for you to major in any
of the basic sciences (physics, chemistry, biology, materials science)
or in electrical, mechanical, or aerospace engineering. As you take
your courses, be aware that your professors will, for the most part,
not take kindly to questions and comments that suggest that there
may be major cracks in the foundations of knowledge that they are
dispensing. Learn from this! You will be observing a paradigm shift
in progress. Watch what happens when you confront your professors
with technical papers and news reports about New Energy. You may be
amazed at their responses. There is room for all kinds of people in
the New Energy field—business people, environmentalists, architects—not
only scientists and technologists. If you are not yet in college,
why not consider doing a school report about some aspect of New Energy?
Writing skills will be needed aplenty. There will be much to write
about as a new world of possibilities opens up for humankind. The
field especially needs good science journalists— those who
do not follow the pack-mentality that is so prevalent.
[Back to Top]
Who is opposing New Energy science and
Only fools and small-minded people would oppose
research on something so wonderful—even if there were only a 10% chance
that it was correct (and the true percentage is far higher —100%,
in our opinion). Sad to say, there are plenty of fools arrayed
against New Energy. Most of them are in academia and in government
agencies charged with managing scientific research—though there are
outstanding exceptions. To paraphrase and turn the tables on the enemies
of New Energy in their attacks against frontier researchers, “This
shows that a Ph.D. is no guarantee against foolishness.” There are
plenty of science Ph.D.s and even Nobel laureates who have obscenely
attacked cold fusion, vacuum energy, hydrino physics, and investigations
into loopholes in the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Their credentials
are worthless. What they have to say on the subject of New Energy
usually amounts to no more than uninformed bigotry. These people
apparently believe that science has come to an end—that the broad
outlines of physics and biology, as described in current texts, are
on absolutely secure grounds. One of the greatest buffoons in the
sad array of enemies is Robert Park of the American Physical Society
and the University of Maryland, whose “What’s New” electronic column
gives weekly cues to an army of incompetent “science journalists,”
who then misinform other journalists, the establishment’s so-called
“scientists,” and cowering government bureaucrats and politicians.
Many people assume that it must be the “oil companies”
who are blocking New Energy research. Not so! In our view, these
large companies are fundamentally too stupid to understand what is
about to hit them. Their executives all have “golden parachutes”
anyway, so they do not really fear that a complete collapse of the
hydrocarbon economy will hurt them individually. Moreover, a handful
of people from existing energy companies have, in fact, already shown
that they are prepared to jump ship and get involved in New Energy.
[Back to Top]
Who is ignoring New Energy science and
For almost 14 years now—the time since the Fleischmann-Pons
announcement— we have observed a very strange phenomenon. Those who
one might expect would have the greatest interest in and enthusiasm
for New Energy, show no interest in it at all — in fact provably (it has been brought to their attention) they deliberately ignore it. These are the establishments of activist environmental
groups! In toto, these groups raise hundreds of millions of dollars
a year in contributions for their environmental causes, and they do
do much good work. However, apparently they are very threatened by
the possibility that their leadership in protecting the environment
will be upstaged by a radically different solution for environmental
ills, which they know little if anything about and which they have
not championed. Also holding them back, there is a strong anti-technology
sentiment among these groups—quite a Luddite streak. Real technological
solutions are not their cup of tea. So they proclaim that the solution
to the world’s ills is, amazingly — hydrogen! Only when they talk about hydrogen they insist that solar power and wind power will
be required to generate this hydrogen from water— never is there the merest mention of the possibility of cold fusion or other
New Hydrogen Physics Energy solutions, which they most certainly have heard about.
It might be argued that these environmentalists
have just absorbed the physics establishment’s verdict on New Energy,
but we think that is not a credible hypothesis. They are so anti-establishment
to begin with, the problem lies somewhere else: their arrogant need
be in charge so that they can continue to play to the political
and financial parties that support them. It may be that some of
these groups will have a change of heart and will some day do what
they should have been doing for over a decade— support New Energy,
or talk about it at least as one possibility! But we are not holding
our breath. When cold fusion was announced on March 23, 1989, within
days or weeks— before there was any way to know one way or the other
whether the cold fusion claims would hold up— we had these prominent
environmental figures say these absurd things about cold fusion
(again, this was in 1989): Jeremy Rifkin, “The fusion findings
are the worst news that ever happened. Right when we are beginning
to develop a global awareness of the problems of global society,
here come some scientists saying we don’t have to deal with these
problems.” Amory Lovins, “Most of the costs of fusion will be in
the stuff you wrap around it to get electricity, from the turbine,
to the plant site, to the health physicists and other clean up services
you need, all of which will make it at least as expensive as fission.
The right place for a fusion reactor is where we have one—in the
Sun, 93 million miles away.” Today these propagandists promote the
environmentalists “hydrogen economy”— while failing to mention that
there may be or are energy sources far more appropriate
to solving the world’s environmental ills. In truth, these activists
do not really want to solve these problems. They want to
be in the public eye talking about them and collecting money for
them. They crave — and they get— the adoration of the mainstream
[Back to Top]
Answers to Questions About Cold Fusion
(Condensed Matter Nuclear Science (CMNS); Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions (LENR); "Hydrino" Energy; New Hydrogen Energy, etc.)
So as not to unnecessarily repeat ourselves, please realize that many questions about cold fusion are answered in Dr. Eugene Mallove’s 8,500-word Memorandum to the White House (“The Strange Birth of the Water Fuel Age”); this memorandum was requested by the Clinton Administration in early 2000, thanks to the prompting of our supporter, the late Sir Arthur C. Clarke; it was later sent to the Bush Administration as well. Unfortunately, nothing has been done about it. The abdication of scientific and environmental responsibility by Federal officials in the matter of cold fusion is appalling and unconscionable. The Memorandum asked for no Federal funding for research in this area. It simply asked for one thing: “Mr. President, you need do only one thing now: Publicly state that you are going to investigate this matter and then do it.” Even this very simple action has not been taken.
What is “cold fusion”?
The collection of phenomena that has come to be called “cold fusion” was discovered in the mid-1980s by professors Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons, who used their own money (about $100,000) to perform the electrochemical experiments that led to their announcement at a press conference on March 23, 1989 at the University of Utah. One of the most intense controversies in the history of science erupted almost immediately. The phenomena reported by chemists Fleischmann and Pons defied then current understandings of how nuclear reactions could occur—they were never thought to be able to happen under such mild, modest temperature conditions (with the exception of radioactive decay). In a small, vacuum-insulated glass cell they had electrically split heavy hydrogen (deuterium) from oxygen in the molecules of a heavy-water solution. The heavy hydrogen was compressed into a palladium metal electrode, after which the cold fusion effects emerged after days and weeks of careful measurement. The reaction products in “cold fusion” were not present in the expected amounts for normal high-temperature plasma fusion (hot fusion at millions of degrees, such as in the cores of stars). Even if such novel reactions were agreed to be occurring at all, that they were not producing intense neutron or gamma radiation (the very fact that Fleischmann and Pons were still alive!) caused great consternation and paradigm paralysis in members of the scientific establishment. This was especially the case for those who were working on the multi-billion dollar program in thermonuclear fusion. The funding for hot fusion—always shaky anyway—was instantly threatened by the potential shifting of funding away from hot fusion, to the then unresolved question of “cold fusion.”
Two years later, through a program initiated by the Office of Naval Research (ONR), a detailed study began which involved the Naval Space Warfare Systems Center, San Diego (SPAWAR), the Naval Air Warfare Center, Weapons Division (China Lake, CA) and the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (Washington, DC). This study attempted to replicate the initial cold fusion claims and related effects and understand their origin. This work, carried out between 1991 and 2001, demonstrated that the effects are reproducible, that a correlation exists between the dominant heat source (referred to as excess heat, discussed below), and the apparent creation of a potential nuclear product—ordinary (garden variety) helium (i.e., helium-4, which has two neutrons, two protons, and two electrons)—that can be produced in conventional fusion but is not usually observed.
Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions (LENR) are more generically applied to the host of reactions that occur within and/or on the surface of certain metals when in contact with forms of hydrogen (usually heavy hydrogen—also called deuterium—which has a nucleus consisting of a proton and neutron, as opposed to regular hydrogen which has a proton only nucleus), including hydrogen gas (usually involving heavy hydrogen), or water (usually heavy water) which of course contains hydrogen—and when triggered under special conditions. LENR produce excess heat (much more heat out than can be accounted for by ordinary chemical reactions), helium, sometimes tritium (a radioactive isotope of hydrogen), low levels of neutrons, charged particles, gamma rays, and even transmutations in heavy metals in the LENR devices. In some experiments parts of the host metal have been significantly transmuted into other elements—it is as though “alchemy” has risen from the grave of scientific history! From our perspective in examining the overwhelming evidence for low-energy transmutation of elements in “cold fusion” reactions, it most certainly has! LENR reactions have been seen with palladium, titanium, nickel, platinum, gold, other metals, and with some ceramic materials. [Back to Top]
What sources of information can I access
about cold fusion?
Infinite Energy Magazine is one good resource for continuing coverage of the field. The magazine has been in publication since March 1995 and
is circulated around the world to over 40 countries.
Primary websites that focus specifically on cold fusion/LENR should be consulted:
See other important websites on our Links page.
The website of BlackLight Power Corporation (www.blacklightpower.com) does not like to advertise that the company’s highly reproducible New Energy generating processes from hydrogen bear a strong connection to cold fusion/LENR phenomena. But any serious investigation of cold fusion/LENR should not overlook this remarkable work.
Some books accessible to the general reader which give appropriate discussion of the history and science of cold fusion are:
Fire from Ice: Searching for the Truth Behind the Cold Fusion Furor by Dr. Eugene F. Mallove (1991, John Wiley and Sons)
Excess Heat: Why Cold Fusion Research Prevailed by Charles Beaudette (2000, Oak Grove Press)
The Rebirth of Cold Fusion: Real Science, Real Hope, Real Energy by Steven B. Krivit and Nadine Winocur (2004, Pacific Oaks Press)
Science of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction: A Comprehensive Compilation of Evidence and Explanations About Cold Fusion by Edmund Storms (2007, World Scientific)
Many of the papers presented at recent conferences and published in journals are now archived at http://lenr-canr.org.
A number of books giving negatively biased views were published early on, of course ignoring almost all of the experimental evidence: Too Hot to Handle (Frank Close, 1991); Cold Fusion: The Scientific Fiasco of the Century (John Huizenga, 1992); Bad Science: The Short Life and Weird Times of Cold Fusion (Gary Taubes, 1993).
An excellent video documentary, “Cold Fusion: Fire from Water,” was produced in 1999 (70 minutes, VHS or DVD).
[Back to Top]
What is excess heat?
Many chemical and nuclear processes are “exothermic,” meaning they produce more energy out than is input. For example, when you strike a match, it burns until the fuel is exhausted, producing energy—small energy in (from the striking motion), large energy out. Some LENR devices produce energy the way a burning match does: no energy is input after an initiation trigger, but a steady stream of heat is produced. Other LENR devices require an external source of electrical energy, or ultrasonic sound energy, to keep the reaction going. The electrical or other energy input into the system produces some heat, and the LENR reaction produces additional or “excess” heat. For example, with electrochemical cold fusion you might input 1 watt of power and get out 3 watts, so 2 watts are excess. Some electrochemical LENR systems get much better performance than this; input is a fraction of a watt and output is up to a kilowatt or more for a time. More commonly, LENR performance has not been nearly that good. The conditions that produce such excellent performance have not been easy to pin down— if they had been, the cold fusion controversy would have been over long ago!
[Back to Top]
Is cold fusion chemical, nuclear, or something
Cold fusion (LENR) cannot be a simple chemical process, because it consumes no ordinary chemical fuel and it produces no chemical ash—nuclear products are observed. Many LENR cells contain mostly water, which is inert material that cannot burn or undergo any other exothermic chemical reaction. Cells also contain metal hydrides, which can produce a small amount of chemical heat, but cold fusion cells have produced thousands to millions of times more energy per unit of mass than any chemical cell could. For example, a cell containing 40 milligrams (0.04 grams) of metal hydride, and no other potential chemical fuel, produced 86 megajoules of energy over a two month period. The best conventional chemical fuel is gasoline; only a few exotic rocket fuels produce more energy per gram than gasoline, and they are not much better. It would take 2,000 grams of gasoline to produce 86 megajoules of energy, so (if the entire .04 gram quantity of metal hydride somehow had been burned chemically, through the process) the cold fusion cell would have been 50,000 times better. Furthermore, no cold fusion cell has ever shown any sign of terminating its output for lack of fuel. In fact, because important evidence exists that the reaction is related to fusion between deuterium (i.e., heavy hydrogen) nuclei, it is reasonable to assume that the number (0.04 grams of metal hydride) was actually not burned at all, and that a considerably smaller amount of material was involved in the actual process. In particular, assuming that the reaction involves deuterium fusion, and the production of helium-4, each time fusion takes place the amount of energy that is released is actually 20 million times as much as the comparable energy that is released each time a single molecule of gasoline is burned. Furthermore, since the cell that produced 86 megajoules was deliberately turned off after two months, it is plausible that the reaction is not the result of chemistry at all. If it had been left on, it might have run for years, or decades. Nobody knows how long it might have run. Consistent with the idea that the process is nuclear, there is a very real indication that in some LENR systems the reaction is catalytic—in other words, the metal responsible for the reaction is not necessarily consumed, it just facilitates the nuclear reaction like a chemical or biological catalyst or enzyme.
Cold fusion does produce nuclear ash: garden variety helium, a low level of neutrons, and in some cases tritium (an unstable hydrogen isotope that has a nucleus that possesses one proton and two neutrons), other low-level radiations, and transmutations in the host metal. It produces trillions of times fewer neutrons than plasma fusion or conventional nuclear fission, and most scientists believe that nothing resembling hot plasma fusion can take place in or on a metal lattice. So if cold fusion is a nuclear fusion or fission reaction (or perhaps it embodies aspects of both fission and fusion), it must be very different than any previously known nuclear reaction. It has not been demonstrated conclusively that the helium, tritium, and other nuclear ash from all LENR reactions is sufficient to account for all of the heat generated. However, in an extremely careful study performed by researchers from SRI (Menlo Park, CA), it was demonstrated that the amounts of helium-4 that were required to account for the excess heat, in at least one experiment, could be recovered systematically within a level of error (less than 3% or 0.05 million electron volts) that not only was well within experimental bounds associated with the measurement process but through a procedure in which, with time, helium was recovered from the host material after the experiment in a time-dependent fashion, in such a way that with time the accuracy of the correlation improved. More qualitatively, not only in this experiment (where the recovery process was significantly improved) but in some additional LENR experiments, excellent correlation has been measured—e.g. just as much helium is produced for the excess heat measured as would be expected in the equivalent hot fusion reaction that yields not heat but deadly gamma rays. If LENR is not strictly a nuclear process, then perhaps this is a new source of energy never before observed, which occasionally produces nuclear reactions as side effects. Some theorists who have examined LENR phenomena have this viewpoint, though the “mainstream cold fusion” view is that LENR reactions are all strictly nuclear-based, just not yet fully understood.
Beginning in 2006, the group from SPAWAR began to observe higher energy helium-4 nuclei (alpha particles) on a regular basis, through a well-defined triggering process. Although the individual events (which they routinely record from high energy particle tracks that appear at the surface of plastic films—referred to as CR39 films) occur at a relatively low rate, as a function of time, the composite images created in these experiments provide compelling evidence that reactions involving nuclear processes are taking place. After the initial experiments were conducted, groups from four other laboratories performed precise replications of the same experiment. Subsequently, evidence of neutron and gamma ray emission in the same kinds of experiments was also observed. Although the emissions associated with these experiments were all at low levels, the fact that they occur is very important for convincing mainstream physicists that the effects involve nuclear processes because: 1) The effects involve the creation of high energy particles in situations that cannot be explained using ordinary nuclear physics; 2) The effects are highly reproducible and involve well-known procedures that are familiar to nuclear physicists.
If cold fusion cells are at least in part
nuclear, why aren’t they extremely hot?
Many people think that because nuclear reactions can produce gigantic amounts of energy—such as in exploding thermonuclear weapons—that means nuclear reactions must be very hot, like the inside of the Sun. This is incorrect. An impure sample of radium that is radioactively decaying, or some uranium compound that is undergoing fission of its uranium atoms might be cold to the touch, or barely warm—depending on the conditions. These samples can produce dangerous ionizing radiation. The individual radioactive decays of atoms or fission reactions that occur atom-by-atom inside these materials produce millions of electron volts (eV) of energy release, whereas the atoms in a chemical reaction releases only a few to 10 electron volts at most. But atoms undergoing conventional nuclear reactions in the impure sample are few and far between, whereas trillions of atoms in the chemical sample simultaneously participate in the chemical reaction. That’s why a simple match can be very hot at its tip when it ignites. Although a nuclear reaction produces millions of times more energy than a chemical reaction, in some cases the chemical reaction produces much more power over a short period of time. This is why a burning match is hotter than the impure sample of radium. The radium remains warm for thousands of years, the match burns out in a minute or two.
What is the difference between power and
energy? What are watts, joules, kilowatt-hours, and BTUs?
These may not be the most “Frequently Asked Questions,” but they ought to be, because power and energy are Frequently Confused Concepts. Power is the rate of energy release at a given instant in time—how much energy is released per unit time at that instant. Energy is power integrated—added up—over time. Power is measured in watts, kilowatts, and horsepower. Energy is measured in joules (watt-seconds) or kilowatt-hours. A power level of 1 watt that continues for 1 second equals 1 joule—because 1 watt is 1 joule per second. The integrated energy from a 100-watt light that runs for 60 seconds equals 6,000 joules. A good fact to keep on file: 4.18 joules equal 1 calorie, which is enough energy to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius.
In U.S. industry, thermal energy is sometimes measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units). A BTU is the energy it takes to raise one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit. One BTU equals 1,055 joules. One horsepower equals 746 watts.
[Back to Top]
Why doesn't cold fusion produce dangerous
ionizing radiation and neutrons?
Nobody knows for certain why the primary signature of cold fusion is excess heat, not deadly radiation. Nevertheless, many LENR theorists have put forth very intriguing proposals for the mechanism of these reactions. There are, in fact, many dozens of competing theories—a smaller number of which are very well fleshed out. The exact nature of the LENR reactions is one of the many unsolved scientific mysteries surrounding them. Some scientists think that because the effect does not produce intense radiation, it cannot be a nuclear process. Others say the energy is produced, but then somehow absorbed by the metal lattice—either as high frequency vibrations, or through coherent processes in which many delocalized vibrations are involved. A potentially important point of confusion associated with the possible origin of this last kind of effect has been a failure by nuclear physicists to accept the idea (even though it actually is known to be present in conventional fusion) that longer range effects (involving electromagnetism) can induce changes in how nuclear reactions can take place through processes that are time-dependent and involve changes in the environment that are far from the location of a potential nuclear reaction. (Also, potentially, in solids, changes in electromagnetism can be caused by many particles interacting with each other.) In particular, in conventional fusion the effects of electromagnetism are also present in the reaction that creates helium-4, and for this reason this reaction occurs infrequently because far from the reaction, the heavy hydrogen—deuterium—nuclei that are involved have to be prepared by the environment in a very specific way: 1. With no net magnetic spin; 2. With a particular form of angular orientation—referred to as being in a d-like configuration (similar to the way electrons can bond to each other and to atoms through d-like chemical bonds, in solids and molecules).
In any case, it is a good thing that LENR does not produce dangerous ionizing radiation because if it did, LENR cells would require elaborate shielding and LENR would be difficult, expensive, and dangerous to commercialize. From a scientific perspective, the lack of radiation and neutrons is puzzling, but from the point of view of business, commercialization, and the environment, this is a priceless advantage. This is not to say that there are not nuclear hazards associated with LENR reactions! There are nuclear reactions occurring where they have previously not been observed; thus it is possible to imagine LENR research leading to new kinds of reactions that could be employed in weapons—perhaps small, “clean” versions of previously implemented conventional nuclear weapons. But so far, there does not appear to be a simple route to this deadly application. No LENR reaction being discussed openly seems to have even a tiny hint of a “runaway” characteristic that could release large quantities of energy in a short time—the requirement to make a bomb.
What is “hot” fusion (conventional, plasma
[Back to Top]
Hot fusion is the kind of nuclear reaction that powers the Sun and the stars—it is also the reaction used in thermonuclear weapons (hydrogen bombs). At temperatures of tens to hundreds of millions of degrees Celsius (or Kelvin), the nuclei of hydrogen atoms can get close enough together, frequently enough, such that the nuclear force between some of the close-approaching nuclei has a chance to overcome the natural tendency of the positively charged nuclei to repel one another. The nuclei then join or fuse to form helium nuclei. This releases enormous energy. Fusion of light elements to form heavier elements (e.g. hydrogen fusing to helium) is the opposite of fission, which is the release of energy by splitting heavy uranium or plutonium nuclei.
[Back to Top]
What is the present status of controlled “hot” fusion?
Scientists the world over have spent more than five decades and billions of dollars (an estimated $17 billion in the U.S. alone) to investigate the possibility of mimicking with devices here on Earth the fusion reactions of the stars. These are complex and large machines that rely on high magnetic fields or powerful lasers to compress and heat fusion fuel, typically the isotopes of hydrogen, deuterium, and tritium. The output of these hot fusion reactors is deadly neutron radiation, which must first be converted to heat in molten metal flowing around the core of the reactor. This heat must then be used to make steam to generate electricity. The process is fraught with exceedingly difficult engineering problems, and at best it would become another kind of power generation that leaves much radioactive waste in irradiated components. The controlled hot fusion program has made enormous strides since the 1950s when it began, but unlike cold fusion it is far below what is called healthy “breakeven” in its energy balance—much more energy output than input, but all agree that the earliest possible time when “practical” hot fusion devices (still the size of an athletic stadium) might be available is at least three decades away. Moreover, the success of hot fusion always seems to be “just 20 to 30 years away.” This has led to the very appropriate joke, “Hot fusion is the energy of the future—and always will be!” Hot fusion is a very tough engineering problem. Many engineers—even those favorable to hot fusion—suggest that the ”tokamak” reactor approach (magnetic confinement fusion) or the giant laser approach (inertial confinement approach) being followed by the U.S. Department of Energy will never result in commercially viable technology.
The U.S. hot fusion scientists, and their colleagues in other countries, continue to want to build a gigantic, complex test reactor called ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor), which might begin to operate in another decade. A commercial hot fusion power plant would not be on-line until at least 2040. The annual budget for hot fusion research in the U.S. regularly exceeds $500 million, and the program now seeks increased funding, which Congress previously killed, for ITER and other large-scale experiments.
[Back to Top]
How does cold fusion differ from hot fusion?
Cold fusion releases enormous quantities of energy in the form of heat, not ionizing radiation, as in hot fusion. This heat energy is thousands to millions of times what ordinary chemical reactions could possibly yield. If “cold fusion” is a heretofore unknown form of benign nuclear reaction—as most researchers in the cold fusion field believe—there is more potential cold fusion energy in a cubic kilometer of sea water than in all of the known oil reserves on Earth. When it is assumed that the deuterium fusion process that produces helium-4 is responsible for the excess heat in each fusion reaction, 1 million times as much energy is released as the amount of energy that is released when gasoline is burned. It appears to be possible to create these reactions using ordinary water (which has a concentration of approximately 0.0002 molecules of heavy hydrogen per molecule of light hydrogen). Assuming that this is true, in principle any volume of ordinary water that has the same mass of water as a second volume of gasoline that has the same mass has 200 (=0.0002 x 1 million) times as much energy. n this kind of situation, because of differences in density, the associated volume of gasoline is about a factor of 6.3 larger but has a mass that is 5 times greater, and the actual available energy is smaller when the volume of water is smaller than the volume of gasoline. When these differences are taken into account, it turns out that one gallon of ordinary water can release approximately 160 times as much energy from fusion than the comparable amount of energy that can be released by burning a gallon of gasoline. Since routinely it is now possible to drive an automobile 30 miles from a gallon of gasoline, using cold fusion reactions it is entirely possible that it will be possible to drive an automobile 160 times farther, or 4800 miles, using a gallon of ordinary water! Furthermore, since helium-4 is the most inert element that exists in nature, assuming that no other products are responsible for the heat, it may be possible to do this without any pollution or harmful products, whatsoever.
Cold fusion, in contrast to hot fusion, occurs in a relatively simple apparatus. Cold fusion/LENR reactions are not at all like conventional hot fusion reactions. If they were, cold fusion experimenters would be killed by massive flows of radiation—neutrons and gamma rays.
[Back to Top]
Are there theories that can explain cold
Cold fusion researchers have attempted to find theoretical models to explain the observed cold fusion effects: large thermal energy releases, low-level nuclear phenomena, and the absence of massive harmful radiation and other conventional nuclear effects. There is yet no single, generally accepted theory that explains all these phenomena. There is no doubt, however, that the phenomena exist and will eventually be explained. It is difficult to come up with a single theory that fits all the data. A potentially important point, however, is that considerable confusion about the potential role of electromagnetic effects and the application of conventional ideas involving quantum mechanics exists in the one reaction (involving deuterium fusion and the creation of helium-4) associated with conventional fusion that appears to be relevant to cold fusion. The underlying formalism (quantum electrodynamics and quantum field theory) associated with the theory that explains this reaction is actually quite rich and, in principle, can be applied in creative and innovative ways that hold great promise, especially in situations involving condensed matter. In situations associated with smaller (micrometer and nanometer size) finite crystals, the associated physical situations which, it can be argued, can only realistically be described using these kinds of models, are only beginning to be understood in conventional situations. In fact, because recent evidence exists that shows excess heat can be created on-demand in these kinds of environments, this kind of formalism (quantum electrodynamics and quantum field theory) may hold great promise for providing considerable theoretical insight concerning mechanisms for explaining the excess heat effect. Alternatively, the explanation for excess heat as well as other phenomena might lie in alternative forms of nuclear reactions, or in exotic “super-chemistry” requiring major modifications to quantum mechanics, or something even more peculiar (such as tapping of the so-called “zero-point energy” at the sub-atomic level, or the involvement of what others call vacuum or aether energy).
[Back to Top]
Is there a future for cold fusion?
Unfortunately, cold fusion has been widely attacked, belittled, and ignored in the U.S. and most of Europe, except Italy. Funding for research in the U.S. is very scarce. A few privately funded U.S. scientists are working on it, and “underground” research continues at many laboratories. Fortunately, cold fusion research is not Big Science. It does not need massive installations, just relatively small-scale, dedicated work. Cold fusion energy development will dominantly be the territory for private industry. There is no need for massive government investment.
Probably the most difficult hurdle in trying to come to terms with cold fusion is that it seems too fantastic, “too good to be true” economically and socially, and too unexpected scientifically. But the same was said about many other scientific revolutions, like anesthetics, electric lighting, airplanes, antibiotics, space flight, and nuclear fission. Cold fusion and allied discoveries will probably revolutionize the world in ways we can barely begin to imagine. People who think that such revolutionary changes cannot happen have forgotten the lessons of history. We should remember the sentiments of Michael Faraday, to whom we owe our revolutionary electrically powered civilization. He wrote: “Nothing is too wonderful to be true.”
[Back to Top]
Are there technologies other than cold
fusion/LENR that could release energy from water?
Yes. Many of these are covered in back issues of Infinite Energy, but let us categorize the prominent ones here (not an exhaustive list):
- Catalyzed hydrogen shrinkage reactions—based on the hydrino physics of Dr. Randell Mills of BlackLight Power Corp.
- Water arc discharges—excess energy releases. By Dr. Peter and Neal Graneau
- Excess energy from turbulent cavitation excitation of water, e.g. The HydroSonic PumpTM of HydroDynamics, Inc. of Rome, Georgia (USA)
- Carbon arc discharges under water, which produce an excess energy phenomenon. Variously called: CarboHydrogenTM Gas or AquaFuel
[Back to Top]
Answers to Questions on Vacuum Energy
What is “vacuum energy”?
The Greek philosopher Aristotle (384 – 322
BC) taught that a vacuum could not exist in nature. This led for centuries
to the often repeated, incorrect phrase, “Nature abhors a vacuum.”
This mis-information persisted for two millennia, until the German
physicist Otto von Guericke (1682-1686) showed with a dramatic experiment
in 1657 that a vacuum—a space devoid of air—could actually be made
by pumping the air out. But the question remained, “What, if anything,
‘fills’ that region of no air once it is formed?” Is it a zone
of “nothing”? Physicists dealing with basic questions, such as “What
is heat?”; “What is light?”; and “What is combustion?”, invented various
invisible, massless “fluids” that could be infiltrating matter and
the space between hypothetical atoms—and which could also be present
in the presumed airless space among planets and stars. In fact, all
physicists toward the end of the 19th century were convinced that an invisible ether (alternate spelling, aether) was some kind of a stiff, static, pervading medium
that allowed waves of light and other “electromagnetic” waves
to vibrate through it. But this aether, they believed, had to have
the property of not offering resistance to the motion of celestial
bodies—otherwise these would gradually change their orbits from the
medium’s presence as an energy-draining obstruction.
Early in the 20th century, the aether question became sidetracked by the theory of Special
Relativity (1905) promoted by Albert Einstein, which came into prominence
under peculiar circumstances around 1919. Relativity supposedly dispensed
with the need for an aether in which electromagnetic waves
would vibrate. (See Infinite Energy, Issues #38 and #39, special
“Einstein Reconsidered” issues). Since the ascendancy of Einstein’s
relativity theory, the idea of an aether with properties that would
allow such “transverse vibrations” has seemed superfluous, so the
ether was totally abandoned as an archaic, wrong concept by the physics
establishment. The space vacuum is said to be mathematically described
as a four-dimensional “space-time” plenum, i.e. there is no space per se and no time per se individually, only “space-time.”
As with the premature dismissal of “cold fusion” in 1989, this proved
to be a disastrous mistake by the scientific establishment—though
it most certainly does not acknowledge that fact— not yet.
At the same time, the scientific establishment
— and many of those who oppose its rejection of “free energy” claims
for this or that device— has come up with a new host of properties
of the vacuum. In the theory of quantum mechanics, the vacuum is
said to pulsate with a kind of “electromagnetic foam” at a scale far
below the size of atoms — this is called “zero point energy” or “ZPE.”
Some of those who suggest that there have been and are today various
“free energy” devices that look like they are running on “no fuel,”
suggest that the ZPE is being tapped for energy. Encouraging this
view are some prominent mainstream physicists’ assertions that the
energy density of this ZPE is huge, on the order of 1094 grams per cubic centimeter of vacuum! (Strangely, the mainstream almost never suggests that this energy might be tapped technologically— it’s
just fun for the textbooks.)
Simultaneously, modern cosmologists who accept
Einstein’s relativity theories (virtually all of them) have invented
all manner of concepts to explain puzzling observations about the
vacuum of the universe. They say that filling the universe is invisible
“dark matter,” “dark energy,” and “quintessence”— and they cite supposed
evidence for this from astronomical observations. They have concocted
all manner of mathematical vibrating “string theories” to explain
all of creation— all of particles, all of everything. In fact, they
talk about a “Theory of Everything” being nearly complete—“just around
the corner.” However, this appears to be a cosmic joke on modern
physicists, much as perfect circle “epicycles” to describe planetary
motions were a joke on astronomers who worked before the 17th century. These Theory-of-Everything physicists have apparently not
learned the most basic foundation of “Science 101”: Experiments are
paramount! Experiments contradicting the most elegant and seemingly
correct theory must be taken very, very seriously. Theories must
be thrown out and modified if experimental evidence contradicts the
accepted theory. This is not happening in modern physics.
It turns out, that aside from the ZPE theories, which would seem to
allow the extraction of energy from the vacuum— even by the mainstream
physicists’ own quantum mechanical theory, there are straightforward
measurements that can be performed in laboratories that appear to
show incontrovertible evidence of a host of other aether properties
that have all along been right under our very noses. The measurements
have been ignored, of course, as is the case when paradigm paralysis
dominates. Please consult the references cited below, and learn about
this astonishing turn of events.
[Back to Top]
What sources of information can I access
that deal with vacuum energy?
• An excellent research compendium on the Zero
Point Energy viewpoint about vacuum energy is the book by Moray B.
King, Quest for Zero-Point Energy: Engineering Principles for “Free
Energy” (2001) [view
• Both Nikola Tesla and Wilhelm Reich had remarkably
accurate things to say about a dynamic ether (or aether), the static “luminiferous ether” form of which was rejected by 20th Century physics as a carrier of light waves, following the ascendancy
of Einstein’s relativity theories. Unfortunately, because of major
theoretical errors that have entered modern physics and pervade it,
an energetic, dynamic ether with properties measurable in the laboratory was overlooked. The work of Dr. Paulo and Alexandra Correa of Canada
(www.aetherometry.com and www.aethera.org)
has built on and apparently has validated the stream of aether physics
work that was begun by Tesla and Reich.
• Tom Bearden’s book, Energy from the Vacuum,
appeared in 2002 and may be ordered from (www.cheniere.org).
• Robert L. Forward, “Extracting energy from the
vacuum by cohesion of charge foliated conductors,” Physical Review
B, Vol.30, No.4, pp.1700-2.
• Kenneth R. Shoulders, whose well-known, patented
“high density charge cluster” science and technology has impressed
a host of investigators, has a key patent (and others) that should
be consulted: U.S. #5,018,180, “Energy Conversion Using High Charge
We reviewed some of these sources in answers
to “General Questions,” but let us repeat the information here in
[Back to Top]
Who were some of the historical scientists
and inventors who have dealt with vacuum energy?
There are dozens of people who have claimed
to have produced devices that on first appearance seem to violate
conservation of energy (the First Law of Thermodynamics), but which
the various theories of vacuum energy suggest are actually being “fueled”
by an energetic medium. Some of these devices may have been improperly
measured by the inventors and their associates, leading to incorrect
conclusions that energy was being tapped from the vacuum. Other figures
seemed to have been proceeding on a direct path to vacuum energy devices,
from the experiments that they carried out. To name a handful of
the more prominent, more frequently discussed inventors and scientists
(but not to diminish others not mentioned):
A) Deceased: Robert Adams, Paul M. Brown, Edwin V. Gray, Howard Johnson, T. Henry Moray, Wilhelm Reich, Floyd Sweet, Nikola Tesla.
B) Present: Tom Bearden, John Bedini, Paulo and Alexandra Correa, William Hyde, Kenneth Shoulders, Paramahamsa Tewari.
[Back to Top]
What experimental devices exist today that embody vacuum energy?
The two most prominent claimed technologies
in vacuum energy today, and their presently achieved U.S. patents,
• Motionless Electromagnetic Generator (MEG) of
Tom Bearden and his associates
— 6,362,718 “Motionless Electromagnetic Generator”
• Pulsed Abnormal Glow Discharge Reactor (PAGDTM)
of Dr. Paulo and Alexandra Correa
— 5,416,391 “Electrochemical Transduction of Plasma
— 5,449,989 “Energy Conversion System” (5/12/95)
— 5,502,354 “Direct Current Energized Pulsed Generator
Utilizing Autogenous Cyclical Pulsed Abnormal Glow Discharges” (3/26/96)
[Back to Top]
Is there a connection between technologically-derived
vacuum energy and “Chi,” “Qi,” “Prana,” and other claims of “biophysical
energies” or “subtle energies”?
Yes, this is one of the most remarkable emerging
conclusions that can be taken from the new energy field. In our view,
a compelling case is building up that those technological devices
that actually do tap vacuum energy, are also tapping a source
of energy that is part and parcel of the functioning of all life.
For centuries, various types of what are now in the West called “complementary
medicine”—therapeutic healers, acupuncturists, Reiki therapists, and
the like—have been used in Oriental cultures. This has now spread
to the West and there are big battles being fought over these complementary
medicine therapies. A large and growing percentage of patients now
using Western medicine also employ Eastern practices. These multi-mode
medicine users are, by and large from the assessments of some studies,
expressing great satisfaction. These therapies (other than acknowledged
“placebo effect” aspects) would seem to have no basis for their functioning, if biological systems such as the human body were exclusively biochemical and neurological systems with no interspersed and surrounding
biophysically active medium—aether, “orgone,” etc. However, the line
of work begun in the 20th Century
by Wilhelm Reich and others in the West is converging to provide physics-based
explanations of the “aetheric body” model of living organisms that
is operating in conjunction with conventionally understood biochemical
processes. See, in particular, the scientific monograph, “Fundamental
Measurement of Biological Energies-I,” downloadable from www.aetherometry.com,
monograph AS2-28. There appears to be much more to the electrical
and energy properties of organisms than can be accounted for by the
limited models of mainstream physics.
[Back to Top]
Is there any mainstream research that substantiates
There are significant controlled studies that substantiate
the effectiveness of complementary medicine modalities, such as acupuncture.
However, we are increasingly seeing Western medicine’s technological
imaging and sensing devices being applied to prove that bodily
effects without conventional biological explanation are occurring.
To cite one of the best examples we have encountered, please read:
“Evaluation of Acupuncture Using fMRI and Ultrasonic Imaging,” by
Chang Sok So (Dept. of Anatomy and Neurobiology), Joie P, Jones &
David D. Kidney (Department of Radiological Sciences), University
of California at Irvine; Takuso Saito, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Proc. of the National Academy of Sciences USA, Vol.95, 1998,
pp.2670-2673. In this study, it is conclusively shown with scientifically
blinded examination using ultrasonic and other stimulation of an acupuncture
point in the foot of a subject (many subjects were used): 1. The acupuncture
point on the foot, known by acupuncturists to help vision when stimulated,
resulted in nearly instantaneous production of activation in
the visual cortex of the brain of the subject —a completely reproducible
effect that could be toggled off and on; 2. The acupuncture point
was found to be highly localized (within a fraction of a millimeter);
and 3. The speed of transmission of the information from the foot
acupuncture point to the visual cortex of the brain, as measured by
fMRI, was at least 1,000 times any known nerve transmission speed!
Dr. Joie P. Jones explained, at a public lecture in June 2001 (Society
for Scientific exploration Meeting, LaJolla, CA), that because the
functional MRI (fMRI) minimum time localization of measurement is
about 80-microseconds, the actual transmission speed to the brain
might be faster than even this astounding 1,000-fold figure.
A footnote, which illuminates the sad state
of mainstream science today: The group’s technical paper, which
is obviously of overarching importance, was submitted to Nature magazine, which rejected it without review— according to Dr. Joie
Jones. Subsequently, five sympathetic Nobel laureates in the biological
sciences, who were impressed with the paper, urged Nature to reconsider its decision. It did not. Therefore, the paper had
to be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of
Sciences, which does not censor the work of its participants.
Thus, a fundamental finding about the human body’s functioning,
and the medical effectiveness of a disparaged technique— acupuncture—
has been submerged, at least for now.
[Back to Top]
Answers to Questions on Environmental Energy
is “Environmental Energy”?
Here is one simple case of the use of environmental
energy, but this application is not a form of New Energy, since
it operates on already accepted principles: There have been proposals
to use the temperature difference between the warmer top parts of
the ocean and the colder lower-lying parts to generate useful electric
power. This can be done with various electrical devices and specialized
engines that operate between temperature reservoirs that do not have
a very big difference in temperature between them. But what if it
were possible to take the energy out of the top part of the ocean
without relying on the colder water far below the ocean surface? The
science of thermodynamics, in particular the Second Law of Thermodynamics,
says this cannot be done. It is impossible, we are told, to
produce useful work by taking heat out of a single warm object (here,
that object is the ocean surface) without having a lower temperature
reservoir to dump “waste” heat into. That is the supposed restriction
that science has lived with for over 150 years. Therefore, “Environmental
Energy,” in the context of New Energy, is the attempt to violate this
supposedly sacrosanct “law.”
The term seems ambiguous on its face, but it
is the best one we could come up with to describe this potentially
huge (for all practical purposes, infinite) source of New
Energy. The atoms and molecules in all matter move, vibrate, and
jiggle— each atom and molecule has a kinetic energy (motion energy)
and other kinds of motion energy associated with rotation and vibration
(within multi-atom molecules, as an example, there is vibration
of the bonds between them). In a gas especially, the atoms or molecules
may be moving very fast in all directions. Thus there is definitely
energy of movement contained within all matter. The question is
this: Under what circumstances can this motion energy be extracted
and used to produce useful work?
[Back to Top]
What is the Second Law of Thermodynamics?
There are many ways of stating the Second
Law of Thermodynamics—there are many textbook definitions associated
with different scientists. But its essential conclusion is that a
heat engine (an engine that uses heat and operates in a cycle) cannot
convert 100% of the heat produced within it (from, say, fuel combustion)
to an equivalent amount of useful work. Nature has supposedly saddled
us with an efficiency limitation that cannot be broken.
What is Carnot efficiency?
Carnot efficiency is a term that describes the maximum efficiency that can be reached by a heat engine in
converting heat to work. The Carnot efficiency has a simple formula
that has been around since the early part of the 19th Century, when young French engineer Sadi Carnot proposed it based
on his study of steam engines. (Strangely enough, he put forth his
formula when the very nature of heat as molecular motion was still
being debated!) The formula is: Efficiency = (Temperaturehigh – Temperaturelow)/Temperaturehigh.
Here, the temperatures must be given in the absolute temperature scale
— Kelvin degrees, which begins at “absolute zero,” which is some -273°C
below 0 °C (the freezing point of water). So, at a typical ambient
temperature of 20 °C (approximately 293 K), the Carnot efficiency
of an engine operating between that temperature and 273 K (0°C) is
(293-273)/293 = 6.8%. For a much more elevated temperature process
with a high temperature of say 1,000°C, dumping its waste heat to
a 20°C environment, the Carnot efficiency is 77%. Note well, that
as the temperature of the high and low temperature reservoirs approach
each other, the efficiency goes down and becomes 0% when Thigh=
Tlow. This is another way of saying that if Carnot efficiency
is indeed the upper limit for the efficiency of a heat engine, an
engine cannot be made to extract work out of a single temperature
reservoir — such an engine would have “zero efficiency.”
[Back to Top]
What sources of information can I access
that deal with “environmental energy”?
You can read any standard thermodynamics textbook,
and it will spell out quite clearly why you cannot use environmental
energy from a single temperature reservoir. Carnot efficiency will
be used to “prove” the Second Law and the Second Law will be used
to establish Carnot as the upper limit to efficiency— perfect circular
logic! But you can also read the work of those who challenge the Second
Law. There is a growing body of such technical literature. Here is
• Some of this research has been reviewed and discussed
at length in articles in Infinite Energy (Issues #29, #37,
• A recent landmark paper by physicists and a mathematician at the University of San Diego (Sheehan et al., “A Solid-State Maxwell Demon,” Foundations of Physics, 32, 10, 1557-1595, October 2002, MaxwellDemonOct2002.pdf) seems to offer nearly conclusive proof that devices that do create work from a single temperature reservoir can be built. The paper proposes a laboratory-testable, solid-state device that uses the electric field energy of an open-gap p-n junction semiconductor device to drive a solid-state mechanical piston. [See also: Daniel P. Sheehan, "Four Paradoxes Involving the Second Law of Thermodynamics," Journal of Scientific Exploration, 12, 2, 1998, 303-314, http://www.padrak.com/ine/SHEEHAN.html ; Vladislaw Capek and Daniel P. Sheehan, Challenges to the Second Law of Thermodynamics, Springer, 2005 ; Wayne Proell, The Thermodynamic Theory and Engineering Design of Supercarnot Heat Engines, Cloud Hill Press, 1984 ; Wayne Proell, The Thermodynamic Exploration for High Efficiency Internal Combustion Engines, Cloud Hill Press, 1993 ; Wayne Proell, The Thermodynamic Exploration for Solid State Heat Engines, Cloud Hill Press, 1999]
[Back to Top]
What evidence is there that there are major
flaws in the Second Law?
The evidence against the Second Law comes in three
- Experiments that produce separations of hot and
cold with, in the limit, zero energy input. In other words, in the limit the spontaneous separation into hot and cold
- The growing evidence in the scientific literature
that many classes of macroscopic Maxwell demons are possible.
- The third class of evidence actually comes from
the field of Vacuum Energy: The observation of thermal anomalies
associated with Faraday cages (see above reference to the Reich-Einstein
experiment)— spontaneous (aether generated) separations of hot
[Back to Top]
What is a “Maxwell Demon”?
This was James Clerk Maxwell’s hypothetical
microscopic intelligent being, who could reside at a small opening
in the partition between two chambers of a gas, each initially at
the same temperature. The “demon” would observe molecules in motion
as they approached the opening between the chambers, measure their
velocities, and sort them into hot and cold ones (fast or slow moving)
just by opening and closing a small door covering the opening at
the appropriate times. If such a demon could exist, it could create,
in effect, a “spontaneous” separation of a uniform temperature reservoir
into a hot and a cold zone. With such a separation of the gas into
two different temperature regions, an engine could be made to perform
useful work. Such a hypothetical demon — or its equivalent (such
as a specially designed membrane, and so forth)— has been deemed
impossible by the physics establishment. Such demons cannot produce
robust macroscopic effects. Critics of the universal applicability
of the Second Law of Thermodynamics believe otherwise.
[Back to Top]
What is a “Perpetual Motion Machine
of the Second Kind”?
This supposedly “impossible” kind of machine
would take environmental energy from a single temperature
reservoir (the environment) and convert it to work with 100% efficiency—
without a lower temperature reservoir being used to accomplish this.
Critics of the universal applicability of the Second Law believe
such machines can be built. They suggest that they have experimental
evidence to prove this. The ultimate proof, however, will have to
be in robust engines that achieve this objective.