Who Buried Cold Fusion? An Open Letter to Michael Moore

The following open letter to Michael Moore was submitted by E-Cat World reader Kelley Trezise

To Mr. Michael Moore: Who Buried Cold Fusion?

I am addressing this letter to you as you are known as someone who has no fear of stepping into controversy. With that I still feel compelled to warn you, that if you take on the suggested project you will be kicking over a hornet’s nest of trouble.

The field of Cold Fusion (CF) or Low Energy Nuclear Reactions (LENR) has existed since early 1989 when Drs. Fleischmann and Pons (PF) introduced the world to the possibility of causing fusion of nuclei at relatively low temperatures in a simple apparatus and at low cost. The experiments conducted by those researchers were criticized as poorly done and it was decided by the larger part of the scientific community that they were mistaken and that no such reactions were possible.

There were in the crush of researchers that attempted to replicate the PF experiments, a few who received positive results. Their reports of net heat out, neutrons, and other indications of a nuclear processes taking place within their apparatus were mostly ignored, suppressed, or attacked viciously and those researchers were ordered to stop their experiments, pushed to leave academia, ostracized, pilloried in the press and in a few cases accused (falsely) of fraud. In spite of the abuse and threats, a few brave researchers, mostly tenured professors or those retired, continued their researches, many with their own money.

The data collected over the years accumulated in these labs, but access to the usual peer reviewed journals was cut off as those journals refused to publish any paper associated with CF/LENR. New journals were created and conferences dedicated to the field allowed some amount of communication of results, but despite the accumulating evidence, the field has struggled to be accepted. For years, inventors who applied for patents for devices reliant on CF/LENR have received the same response from the U.S. Patent office: a copy of a New York Times article explaining that cold fusion does not work, and a copy of a statement by MIT professors stating that they could not replicate PF cold fusion claims.

There has been recently a very positive but mysterious development in the field of CF/LENR with the invention of the Energy Catalyzer or E-Cat as the inventor Dr. Andrea Rossi prefers to call it. Whereas earlier devices had relatively low coefficients of performance (COP the ratio of energy output from the device to energy input to the device), this device has a minimum COP of six and ranges up to the hundreds depending upon how it is operated. The inventor claims the device fuses ordinary hydrogen and nickel thereby producing copper and large amounts of energy (tens of kilowatts) from a device of perhaps one liter in volume. It produces no radioactive waste, nor radiation that cannot be blocked easily (neutrons) and is very cheap to build and operate. When I first saw the videos of the announcement of the successful conduct of the experiments I was very skeptical but when I learned that members of the Swedish Skeptics Society and the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences witnessed its operation and they came away convinced that the apparatus worked as advertised and that it was producing energy by way of some nuclear reaction it piqued my interest.

For what it’s worth, I am just a simple mechanical engineer that knows how to apply the first and second laws of thermodynamics and after looking at the data for a number of Rossi’s experiments I am convinced his device is working and is of value. I am also convinced that it is using a non-chemical means of producing energy, that there is no slight of hand involved, that the inventor, while he is a bit eccentric and more of an Edisonian type of inventor rather than scientist, is honestly working to market a practical CF/LENR device to businesses. Dr. Rossi is self-financed and refuses to take money from investors. He is selling the devices packaged in One-Megawatt steam generator units at $2 million each. He has reportedly sold fourteen such units. In the face of the hostility of the academic field to CF/LENR over the past two decades Dr. Rossi has concluded that the only practical route to its introduction is to simply sell the product and let the market decide.

There is mystery and controversy surrounding Dr. Rossi as he had trouble with the law in the past (he was acquitted of the charges), he ignores requests for more scientific testing of his device as he believes it is a waste of time (I am convinced he is correct in that). He is as open as he can be about what he is doing but cannot gain a patent on the device at present and so must sell them in the form of a black-box to those entities that are trustworthy and capable of testing the device before purchasing.

The potential is tremendous but the path at present is very difficult. I believe we are on the cusp of a transformation for the better for the entire world. This will produce a transformation as dramatic as the introduction of the steam engine or the diode. Imagine the world without nuclear fission, coal, or natural gas power plants, no need for long transmission lines (possibly none at all) and a dramatic decline in the need for oil. Imagine an essentially pollution free device that emits no greenhouse gases and produces energy at one cent per kilo-watt-hour allowing the desalinization of sea water, the total separation of waste, the remediation of waste sites and even holds out promises to perform the transmutation of hot nuclear waste into benign atomic forms. Aircraft would no longer need to carry flammable fuel, home power units would allow energy independence, and finally wars over oil need no longer be fought. I hope the seemingly utopian perspective allowed does not throw you off.

So, why you might ask yourself, do I need to be involved in pushing this agenda? Firstly, we have invaded other countries for the sake of maintaining the status quo and as a result many have died. But there would have been no need if the discussion and research were done twenty years ago. Secondly, we are suffering an economic depression at the lower economic ranks but an economic boom at the higher wealth levels and this development will overturn much of that. Lastly, we are suffering from lack of academic freedom as attested by the freeze-out of this subject. By compelling academia to face their failure perhaps it will open the door to greater discoveries.

Dr. Rossi is attempting to work from the top down with his commercial approach to the introduction of CF/LENR. But a second prong should be used in the attack if a real revolution is to be achieved and that needs to come from the grass roots upward. This subject needs to be addressed in the open and dramatic format that only a film can deliver. I cannot imagine this subject and an investigation into the recent event of the E-Cat being fairly addressed in even single two hour episode. But if done well, an audience can be kept riveted to the subject and in the end informed as to what the future looks like should they choose to reach out and embrace it.

As I have said earlier, be warned that you are about to open a Pandora’s box of trouble, as you are dealing with human beasts at their lowest state who are presenting a full plumage display of their vanity, conceitedness, arrogance, and fear with its attendant hatred of the unknown and those who dare to speak truth to power.

Sincerely,

Kelley Trezise, a.k.a. Steve Robb, a.k.a. Zedshort

Here is the Sixty Minutes treatment of the subject:
Part One:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SE1gXIsRc_Y&feature=results_video&playnext=1&list=PL0453F9762AC972CD
Part Two: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anXa8f0dhjI&feature=results_video&playnext=1&list=PL0453F9762AC972CD

Here is the first of a series of eight videos entitled “What Ever Happened to Cold Fusion?”:

Here is the first of three videos of Dr. Robert Duncan at the Missouri Energy Summit 2009:

  • Wes

    Who speaks for “Cold Fusion?” I nominate “cold fusion” to speak for itself! No amount of promotion is going to get this technology ito the hands of the public faster than getting this technology into the hands of the public. When you can buy a working unit with a manufacture’s warranty in Target Stores, the media will beat the doors off the hinges to get the story.

  • http://www.grupoice.com Jorge Jimenez

    I am from a country of those who call the third world, I would rather say that today there are no classes of worlds there is only one and some who lived in a rating of 1 at 4 ° world gradually realize that there is only one . What surprises me is that, as an engineer, I was interested for many years to follow up on everything related to LENR and now Ecat Andrea Rossi.
    Nothing could give us more successful that pasciencia wait while those who can finish shape your creative work. It would lose a lot of energy if we go into a series of debates that only make us lose the compass and find the right course to take in this new phase that comes. Do not speculate, just admire and accept that knowledge is what will free us and nothing else.
    So a man today has the power to reach the stars and the other to give us the cheapest energy of all history, there is something wrong with this?

  • Bernie Koppenhofer

    Hi Kelley: Writing Michael Moore is a good idea, Moore could wake the media……but we also need the government to wake up, that is my mission see below.

    If you are as frustrated as I am about the LENR situation and believe as I do that LENR is an important energy source that the world desperately needs, please read on:

    I sent the following email to my Federal government Representatives please add or delete your own thoughts on the subject, but please write your Representatives.

    It is easy, google “congress.org” enter your zip in upper right hand corner. Click on your Reps.

    “Dear Representative:

    Subject: LENR Fast Track

    There is a preposterous situation occurring within our government that I hope your leadership can correct. Our Patent office refuses to grant patents for LENR reactors because it is their position LENR is impossible. LENR has been demonstrated in hundreds of experiments by many scientists around the world. In fact, Mr. Andrea Rossi has demonstrated his reactor many times and it has now been demonstrated the reaction can be reproduced from his patent application. This bureaucratic or purposeful obstruction is stalling a revolutionary energy source the world desperately needs. Your leadership is required now to remedy the above situation and to put LENR patents on a fast track. Thank you.”

    • Steve Robb

      The emphasis on leadership is important as it will grab their attention. I suspect that 90% of the time the email will be ignored with nothing more than an acknowledgment email form response but I will try.

  • Robert Mockan

    A documentary needs collaboration. Moore can provide the voice and presence in the video, but he would not be my first choice. I believe retired Governor Jesse Ventura would be more suitable. He is well known not only as a statesman but also through his television show and many appearances. For background knowledge as a consultant my first choice would be Jed Rothwell, who has been outspoken about the LENR field for many years, is acquainted with many of the researchers in the field, is a journalist, but perhaps most relevant he knows where the skeletons are buried, so to speak. There are so many others who could contribute to a documentary, but those two names could really get the ball rolling if they decided to take on the task.

    • Robert Horning

      Jesse Ventura would be a good choice, both in terms of legitimate skepticism of what is going on as well as somebody who would lend an air of credibility to the topic. The whole world of LENR research is off-beat enough that it would be a fun bit of investigative journalism and worth spending some time trying to put all of the pieces together and even find out who the major players are.

      There are things to be done here, and I do find the entire topic very fascinating and even entertaining. Everything from the grand conspiracies to low budget scientific research, garage tinkerers, and people literally all over the world trying to figure out what, if anything, is going on is certainly something worth taking notice about.

      The fans of LENR are almost as fanatical (the root word for “fan”) about their topic as Star Trek fans, perhaps even more so. There is a role that could happen with such a documentary, and it could be presented in a legitimately balanced manner.

  • Bill Colias

    Getting Michael Moore involved would be a mistake. He has a tendency to create controversy with his work, even when little exists. Besides, you don’t want alienate people from CF just because they might have an issue with Michael Moore’s prior work.

    • Steve Robb

      What you are saying in essence is that there is a large body of people who cannot think clearly and act only as reactionaries. Michael Moore like “X” therefor I am opposed to “X”. I’m not sure I really care about the “opinions” of such simpletons but I see your point. I tend to not like Michael Moore but whatever or whoever it takes it would help. Let the reactionaries rot.

      • Robert Horning

        The problem here is that Michael Moore already carries significant political baggage that might be better left alone. More specifically he already annoys a number of people… and they are not necessarily just the “wealthy” or “ignorant” either that he claims are annoyed.

        Certainly Mr. Moore has espoused political views that from my perspective turn off about half of the country, and specifically he has been perceived as a Democratic Party propagandist (if you want to get specific). It isn’t even isolated to work he has done in the past, but when he is asked his opinion on a wide variety of topic by reporters or even events he attends and supports.

        This isn’t really a “reactionary” move, but simply an issue that anybody who wants to further the cause of promoting the Energy Catalyzer might want to go another route and get somebody who is at least perceived as a bit more neutral and unbiased.

  • art

    Open-literature publications exposing results of good scientific studies are needed to clearly establish facts and develop a credible underpinning of theory. I searched Web of Science for open-literature publications on “low-energy nuclear reactions” and “cold fusion”, by year, and plotted results (Excel spreadsheet). The results hint at a lower-than-expected number of publications in 2011, compared to 2010 and 2009, for both topics. Typically it requires a year or two between when research starts (i.e., when research funding happens) and results begin being published. Thus, the (possible) dip in publication rate of scientifically peer-reviewed papers that can be found with search terms “low-energy nuclear reactions” and “cold fusion” MIGHT be construed as a continuing research effort, but with no opportunity to publish in the open scientific literature (i.e., federally funded research that has national security issues, or research that is funded by private companies able to impose “can’t publish” requirements). Or not. The overall level of scientific ambiguity in the “ecat area” is astounding.

  • londo

    If there is a lie to be told, Michel Moore is the right man to do it. This entire CF business has gone way beyond silly. I’ve personally gone from hopeful to all but completely convinced that CF is mainly a result of hope, confusion and self deception.
    Think we will soon se people looking for quiet way out of this entire fars.

    • atanguy

      Lies about bush,the Iraq war,the guns lobby, the decline of the US car industry, the disastrous health care in this country etc… etc.. Yea we need Michael to spread the words about CF. Good idea!

      • bkrharold

        Michael Moore is very careful that everything in his films is true and may be independently verified. If he takes this project on, I would expect him to do due diligence, just as he did with his past works. Unfortunately since Rossi will not disclose his secret, it will be impossible to verify his new energy device.
        However there is a large body of documented evidence which has now been published by other Scientists, leaving no doubt that anomalous heat production does occur, and it cannot be explained by current theoretical Physics. If Michael Moore can report on just this aspect of LENR, it may persuade enough people to move this field into the mainstream, where it can be studied openly by researchers without fear of ruining their careers.

        • Bill Colias

          Michael Moore creates controversy. We really don’t want to alienate anyone interested in LENR, even if they are conservative.

        • Steve Robb

          I don’t understand why people keep harping on the details of the design. You don’t need the details in order to apply the first and second laws of thermodynamics to a system to determine if it is working as claimed. The tests (demonstrations) that were performed were applications of the first law to the system and those showed net energy out of a substantial amount. That is all that law can do and that is all it need do. The system works as advertised.

  • http://www.choicedowsing.com kwhilborn

    This is news?
    If you guys start writing articles about your hemroids I am outta here.

  • Tom

    A film like that would be great. I don’t think it needs quite as much controversy as Michael Moore would bring. A little bit is good but for something which would benefit everyone, why should there be any argument? To whoever does do it, good on them, but please focus on cold fusions positive aspects.

  • Ryan

    I like the concept of this idea and, if Mr. Moore was to do it, I feel it would probably bring a good deal of attention to the matter. However, politics in the US has become so polarized that pretty much anything brought out by Mr. Moore would most likely be dismissed immediately by the conservatives in our society, if not demonized since it comes from the ‘enemy’.

    Given that the only support being shown actively here, little as it is, is from Republicans such a move might cause that support to disappear as not to seem like they are agreeing with an ‘evil’ liberal. Then again, perhaps the liberals would pick up on it then and support it.

    I guess it really doesn’t matter which side supports it, half-hearted and limited as that support is likely to be, since so many of them are simply corpratists (re modern fascists)and will do whatever their funders/corporate backers tell them to. If LENR/CF doesn’t mesh with those backers interests then the politician’s statements and actions will match that view. It doesn’t help that the general consensus on LENR/CF by the average public (if they are aware of it at all) is that it is bunk science. It’s much easier to convince them that there’s nothing to look at and to focus on whatever the corporate backers want them to look at or support instead.

    There’s a long way to go for LENR/CF to get accepted and I suspect it will have to be mainstreamed somewhere else, and shown to be beneficial beyond a doubt, before our ‘leaders’ even consider it here.

  • Cliff Bradley

    Michael Moore? Do you really think that Michael Moore would care about this? Michael Moore is completely liberal agenda driven and this potentially makes the global warming folks irrelevent. He won’t like that.

    Seriously, we need to figure out who can influence the patent offices and get them to help with patents.

    By the way, that two or three year old video in 8 parts was awesome! I remember 1989 and how everyone completely tossed out Pons and Fleischman, their work, everything because it could not be replicated. Now we have a good idea why it could not be replicated – “necessary conditions, but not sufficient.”

    • atanguy

      “makes the global warming folks irrelevent” Do you really think that people who fight global warming will be against the E-Cat? And in the opposite side the Oil/Coal barons would support it? Twisted mind my friend…

    • will

      Cliff, Michael Moore, like everybody who is concerned about climate change wants climate change to be mitigated immediately. The consequences of climate change and acidification of the sea will destroy Moore’s life and his children’s lives as surely as it will yours and mine.

      If climate change were solved tomorrow, Michael Moore would still have enough “liberal agenda” concerns to make documentaries about for the rest of his life.

  • James Rovnak

    I am a retired Nuclear Engineer who has followed recent and past developments in LENR and agree Kelly Trezise. Hopefully Michael will respond positively and quickly to shed more light in this area which will be a great benefit to all.

    • Jim

      He’ll reply… if he can make a buck out of it.