E-Cat Plant Needs New Design (SteveW)

The following comment was first posted on this thread by SteveW

An absolutely revolutionary scientific breakthrough and discovery by Rossi. Unfortunately the laboratory test apparatus was directly adapted for commercialization. Now you add sophisticated engineering but you still have an unpractical commercial product. I was really hoping to see something totally different than the original plant. After four years of waiting, as far as I’m concerned Rossi has accomplished little to really advance this technology though I am sure he has worked very hard.

This is what happens when someone works tirelessly- going down the wrong track. I now view IH as amateurish, They are not in the big leagues, they just followed along and funded Rossi’s unbridled plans. I put the blame more on IH for being un-visionary followers. When someone works on a design for a long time they become closed to other possibilities- it’s just how the brain works.

Dramatically changing a design may mean throwing away years of work, this causes mental distress which leads to self delusion. Rossi needed a technology company to step in and say no sometimes and have vision and ideas to put into the mix.

For those still wondering if this technology is real, I suppose these pictures will help them to realize it is. But for me, I’ve already believed it’s real for a long time. I just want this technology to be released, so, now unfortunately, others will be able to design the reactors to change the world.

For Rossi’s sake, I hope this is just a decoy to deceive the competition and the real plant is being developed in secret.

Steve W

  • Warthog

    Well. it is certainly obvious to me.
    The basic structure is probably a channel, possibly rectangular. The multiple hot cats would be mounted transverse to the channel, with each end terminating at a wall. The “far” (plugged) end of would simply socket into recesses in the wall to provide lateral mechanical support. The “near” end would penetrate the other wall (probably through a lock chamber valving arrangement) to allow heater wiring, control sensors, and the like to connect to whatever control circuitry is used, and possibly for fuel element changes. The hot-cats would be in a staggered array down the length of the channel. Thus any single element can be accessed at any time
    With this geometry, the exact working fluid is pretty much irrelevant. Whatever best fits the temperature needs of the application, be that air, Helium, supercritical CO2, liquid metal, DOWTHERM, or pretty much anything else.
    And since I have discussed not at all any product other than Rossi’s “cats”, using information already in the public domain, I certainly am not “releasing bits and pieces” of anything.

  • SteveW

    Very good observation Micro, I actually began my odyssey into trying to design a more practical reactor on a similar idea. Instead of “pebbles”, I called them fuel pellets. The fuel pellets I envisioned would be designed to have a density as close as possible to the molten salt medium they were contained in so that they would stay in suspension and would flow with a current created by a tank stirrer attached through the top of the reactor vessel so as to maintain the reactor at an even temperature. I envisioned the power output of the reactor would be controlled by the number of fuel pellets in the reactor at one time. A means would be provided for automatically loading pellets into the reactor as well as a means for ejecting pellets as well. The ejector would be mounted at the top of the reactor and would have a piston activated siphon that would suck a volume of the molten salt medium from the reactor containing concentrated fuel pellets. A float at the top of the reactor vessel and attached to the shaft of the tank stirrer would continually serve to “corral” fuel pellets creating a more concentrated solution of fuel pellets for the fuel pellet ejector to expel. These fuel pellets, I envisioned could be produced cheaply on automatic machines and there shape would lend themselves to readily available parts handling machinery that would be incorporated in the fuel pellet loader and fuel pellet ejector.

    The problems I saw with the fuel pellets was in selecting the right materials to fulfill all the necessary specifications while maintaining the same density with that of the molten salt. This density could be manipulated through adjusting the volume of the centrally located reactant fuel cavity.

    I decided against this arrangement for several reasons. 1- the problematic seal that needs to be provided for each fuel pellet makes a longer “fuel rod” more practical and cost effective. 2- the fuel pellet loader and ejector was cumbersome and unnecessary and control could be better be achieved with current flow through the reactor and operating temperature of the reactor to modify power output.

  • Nicholas Chandler-Yates

    what IH really ants… is to DEMONSTRATE CONCLUSIVELY that what they have works… then they can get a patent and billions in investment dollars. THEN they can go for the big leaves… in the mean time, they should focus on making a flawless demonstration plant, and should focus on R&D for the next stage of the operation, as they expand.

  • Warthog

    So why do you say you don’t understand why they need to use heat?? OF COURSE Rossi (or any engineer) is going to err on the side of increased safety.
    As to criticizing your “reactor design description”…..it is obvious from the design of the Hot Cat that has been shown that it already encompasses the basic concept you are suggesting. Why do you think it has all those nice little ridges around the circumference??? Because coolant flow will be perpendicular to the mounting of the hot cat, with multiple “cats” mounted in the coolant loop. The ridges will maximize heat transfer in such a geometry..
    But it is painfully obvious that you have little or no real-world understanding of how the R&D and commercial development process works. Rossi and IH’s rate of progress has been astoundingly fast. The only way it could have been done faster is if the fedgov had stepped in and instituted a second “Manhattan Project”, which probability is precisely zero.

  • Warthog

    “The whole Rossi saga for the past four years has completely perplexed me- why do you have to use heat to keep a reaction going that produces heat?”
    To keep it under control. I have explained exactly how and why numerous times in this forum, but “once more into the breech”:
    1) The heat leaving the system with the working fluid is the sum of the heat inputs from the E-cat PLUS the external heater.
    2) The flow of working fluid exactly balances the total heat input (otherwise the reactor would get hotter).
    3) If the reactor temperature starts climbing due to the E-cat moving towards a run-away positive feedback situation, you REDUCE THE HEAT INPUT FROM THE EXTERNAL HEATER.
    4) Since you have not changed the working fluid flow rate, the reactor will IMMEDIATELY START TO COOL, thus cooling down the Ecat.
    5) Feedback control of a heater by means of a thermocouple is extremely cheap and reliable…..far more so that trying to control the flow of the working fluid by means of a control valve, flow sensor, and electronics to match.
    6) The larger the fraction of heat input by the external heater, the more “leeway” the external has to control the e-cat, and thus the safer the system is, and the easier it is to control.

  • Warthog

    “A final note, I think the Hot-cat is disinformation in order to keep competitors on the wrong track”
    Thus insulting all the scientists who tested it, and published results from it. How can you POSSIBLY think that the “Hot-Cat” is disinformation with all the tests and data???

    • SteveW

      How is that insulting? I’m not saying the Hot-cat doesn’t work as demonstrated, all I’m saying is that the hot-cat was chosen over the original e-cat for partial disclosure to prevent the more important IP from leaking out. Better to keep those trying to replicate the technology occupied with a difficult to duplicate reactor than risk losing your more valuable IP with the original e-cat that allows reactions at much lower manageable temperatures and a higer COP. The fuel was allowed to be examined by the testers, it only makes sense not to provide them with your most valuable formulation that you haven’t yet received patent protection for. The fuel provided to the testers was good enough to demonstrate a nuclear process and excess heat – that’s all that was needed. Again this is all my opinion.

  • Andrew

    I like the current design as it serves several purposes. Piling 100 units into a sea can means the reactor can be built and tested anywhere then delivered with ease. Second it gives 100 times the data… Could it be done better? Certainly. Does the current design serve other needs? Yes.

  • Warthog

    Sorry, but your commentary is ridiculous, and displays a deep lack of knowledge about the real world.
    You build for commercialization the things that you absolutely KNOW will work. Radical design changes are not going to happen in the elapsed time frame to date. I am certain that a commercial plant based on the “Hot Cat” WILL be vastly different from this first commercial version which uses the low temperature version (for which there are very viable market niches).
    This is PRECISELY the tack properly taken by a company managed by technologists of deep experience, and is absolutely correct. Companies that take other routes usually go out of business.
    As one experienced with doing precisely this sort of thing (design for commercialization) I say that the rate of progress is simply stunning and happening very fast by real-world standards.

    • Nicholas Chandler-Yates

      you also have to take into account that the photos we have seen are several months out of date, and they represent the state of R&D several months BEFORE THAT… so what we are seeing is 6 months out of date technology wise… i do hope that IH is spending their time well.

  • Omega Z

    The Original Low temp E-cat only produces 120’C output. You would need at least a COP=10 just to break even on energy conversion. You need 600’C to 800’C steam to get into conversion efficiencies of 50% heat to electricity. This requires about 1200’C plus at the reactor.

  • Omega Z

    OK Steve, I think I see where some of the disconnect is here. Your assuming heat & the fuel are the only parameters. There is also the reactor design, RF frequencies or magnetic fields involved in order to obtain high COP numbers. Something that stimulates the reaction. Also, There are different fuel compositions & controls associated with the Lt E-cats & the Hot-cats.

    As to IH/Rossi manufacturing, Any additional plants “They build” will likely be of the same nature as the pilot plant. A means of data collection. For mass production products, I see 2 logical paths. Licensed to many players with a data package from there R&D, Or everything farmed out to a manufacturer who ships them a product ready to sell.

    We tend to think in what we consider the traditional path. Today there are many Corporations who sell their name brand products & don’t even own a factory. Just a warehouse. Like Apple & their I-phones. Apple doesn’t own an I-phone factory. One of their major suppliers is Foxconn in Taiwan. They merely manufacture it to Apples design specs.

    This does not prevent Apple from saying THEY build I-phones for the consumer. They did design & build the prototypes then contract a manufacturer for mass production. IH/Rossi may already have preliminary arrangements.

  • Albert D. Kallal

    I guess the question is what is meant by “big leagues”. The current pictures and designs show amazing progress from the first 1MW plant we saw. The pictures show a VERY NICE and well developed plant.

    We can argue that the Apple I was a toy, and really only a computer board.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_I

    Jobs had much greater vision, but you don’t have un-limited time nor resources. There comes a point where you have to get some kind of product out the door, or you “idea” will just sit on the lab bench.

    While one might want a better e-cat, or consumer e-cat, one, following companies like Apple, their first product was not much to speak about. However, that first product laid the ground work for the Apple II. The result was the “fastest” company in history to a reach billion dollars in sales.

    And who says that IH and Rossi has taken the wrong path? We don’t have any other products in this marketplace!

    About 4 years ago Brillouin came on the scene. They stated they have a “physics” understanding of LENR. And they stated they can turn LENR on and off at will. They stated because they understand “how” LENR works, they have a market advantage. However, 4 years later here we are and we don’t see a product from them.

    Obviously, just like the jump from the Apple I to a “packaged” ready to run computer like the Apple II was not easy. Silicon Valley was FULL of companies and people attempting to build such products, but history shows it was not easy.

    I guess the question is “how” do you know that IH took the wrong road? The same was said of the Wright Brothers

    “if you REALLY do have a working flying machine, then you can name your price and have all the money you need and your plane would be flying all over the place by now!!”.

    So the idea of a flying machine was AMAZING! And people stated that such machines cannot be real since if anyone had such a machine they would be living like a king!!

    Looking at the first 1MW plant, Rossi clearly was un-capitalized. Looking at the latest plant – it looks to be VERY well built. The COP of this machine is unknown, and the possibility that building such a high quality plant might be “too soon”, but I see little choice on how to move forward.

    I certainly agree that over time better designs may come out, but getting to market with “what you got now” is extremely important.

    And such designs and R&D started years ago. It is ONLY by the efforts of Rossi can NOW likely other companies raise money!

    4 years ago, no one would have invested much of anything in LENR because so few believed it was possible. In fact when the Personal Computer industry did not exist, Apple could NOT find money from standard lending institutions and banks (since they never heard of the personal computer industry and it did not exist yet!!). So a new form of financing bubbled up called venture capital, or as people in Silicon Valley use to call it “vulture capital” (since you give up so much of your rights for the money and thus they are vultures!).

    Even today, I doubt few if any investment funds will spend money on LENR.

    I suppose Apple and Steve Jobs could have waited several more years to come out with a better design (for both the Apple I, and the Apple II). However waiting would have risked them loosing their huge market gains they made. There ARE other LENR players just like there was a valley full of people racing to build the next computer!

    For sure the tides of LENR are changing rapid right now, but on the other hand I fail to see what is wrong or amateurish in the current e-cat plant. And I fail to see what the “wrong” road IH is and the current path the e-cat is going down.

    Given that this industry will be worth billions, then anyone here is free to run off and prove they have a better approach, better designs, and better solutions and better technology.
    Until such time that occurs, then such claims of the wrong road, or poor choices technology wise are simply speculation and conjecture.

    You could consider some molten salt system, but then again, you adding more systems and complexity (you don’t know they already gone down that road either). And I like the size of the existing units – I don’t see why 4 or 6 of these small units would not be packaged and ideal for a home e-cat unit. And likely controlling “flow” to remove heat is a big part of the current designs anyway. Who says they don’t use flow as part of their equation? And who says they don’t use multiple thermocouples? And who says they actually need multiple thermocouples for one reactor chamber anyway?

    It is a “sheer assumption” that additional sensors will help.

    And why is a home module based on EXISTING 3 or 4 modules string together not appropriate for consumers?

    We don’t know if each module has only one thermocouple, or several? Given a rather “small” reactor chamber (about the size of a large grape), it not any kind of given that multiple senses are required or even needed. And having smaller chambers allows one to “scale” and modify heat output. (just like some modern engines today can turn off a cylinder as opposed to throttling all cylinders). You gain some significant control by approaching things this way.

    And “key” to LENR is the control issue, not that LENR exists! Larger units likely cannot be controlled.

    I am not convinced that a chamber the size of a large grape needs anything more then what Rossi has now, and how this problem been attacked. History may show IH and Rossi took the wrong path, but it may equally well show they took the only prudent path available at this time.

    Regards,
    Albert D. Kallal
    Edmonton, Alberta Canada

    • SteveW

      When Apple II was introduced they didn’t have much to compete against. There was basically the Pet and the TRS-80 (nicknamed the trash 80). Large computer industries didn’t take the home personal computer market seriously. While large computer company executives from the likes of IBM rolled their eyes at the small home computer market, Apple was gaining strength and expertise and a loyal customer base. The market for the home computer was being created by Apple and Apple was growing with it under the unwitting eyes of IBM. Unfortunately for IH and Rossi this situation does not exist for the energy market.

      When IH releases their product, the large energy conglomerates are not going to sit idly by. They will put huge resources into LENR. They will try and delay deployment of the e-cat to choke them off financially. Sure, you can’t expect the first release of a product to be fully developed. Under that logic, Henry Ford should have waited until he had developed the Ford Mustang instead of selling the Model T. The car industry grew in technology with Ford. However, that first model-T had all the basic components, though primitive, that cars have today. I don’t think Henry Ford would have been successful if he tried to introduce a car without, say, an ignition system for example.

      And I’m sorry, but I think that the 1 megawatt plants design is not incrementally improvable like the model-t. In my opinion IH needs a product that can be improved upon out of the starting gate. Once that gate opens, the world gets to look under the hood and make changes. For me, the problem with the e-cat goes right to the core- the reactor core is an impractical, problematic design. Since the whole one megawatt plant is designed around this reactor core, the whole plant becomes obsolete and you cant re-engineer that- you have to start over while the best minds of the world are doing the same thing.

      What IH does have is the secret fuel. If they can claim IP for that and it has broad enough claims they might be alright, but that’s a big if.

      I leave open the possibility that I am completely wrong and the e-cat plant does need more or less the reactor system it has now and say a molten salt reactor that I have described may not work at all with this technology. I don’t know the operating requirements of this technology, nor does probably anyone outside of IH know them. I am only speculating.

      I also leave open the possibility that IH may have other reactor designs besides the one megawatt plant that may be far more advanced than any conceptualized here. Of course, they would try to keep secret these plans the same way that Apple keeps there next I-phone specs secret. Of course they may try to throw off their competition by showing the one megawatt plant.

      In the end, I hope Rossi is successful.

      Have a good night,

      • Albert D. Kallal

        Large resource rich companies might jump on LENR, but they still going to be 4+ years behind what Rossi has now.

        And we may will find that the e-cat “core” has the basic design that may be changed many times, but the rest of the system will not need any kind of re-tooling.

        And if Lennox, Trane and other home heating companies don’t jump on this band wagon, then a consumer e-cat could most certainly take over HUGE parts of that EXISTING industry. The cell phone market was saturated and many companies were considering leaving. This is the EXACT time Apple came into that market with a revolution product. People thought Apple was NUTS to go into an over supplied low margin business and make handsets.

        So I don’t see why not the same market opportunity exists for e-cat in home heating. Even with LARGE investments, such companies are likely 4-5 years behind Rossi. And 4-5 years is all one needs to grab a HUGE part of the home heating market, just like apple did into an EXISTING and SATURATED cell phone market.

        So I really don’t see much different between the established and mature and saturated home heating and home hot water market, then say Apple jumping into the existing cell phone market.

        You grab this market first, then “bumping” out the established leader is VERY hard.

        Samsung, Google, Microsoft all have FANTASTIC tablet offerings, You can quite much argue that Apple created the tablet market! Now, just try bumping them OUT of that market – VERY hard to do! Some other tablets are likely better – but why switch?

        However, Apple got the market first. We call this in the technology field a “real estate” grab. Facebook did the same thing – they worked on grabbing market, not profits. For years they made nothing, now they do what, over 1 billion per qtr?

        A home heating version and hot water e-cat has much the same opportunity and chance. And if they grab that market, then when you go to Home Depot to get a re-fill cartridge, they only going to carry a few brands – just like office depot only carries several major brands of toner for laser printers.

        And consumers will NOT swap out a perfectly good working heater no more then people will drop their iPad and go purchase a Microsoft tablet. So apple created the tablet market with the iPad, and it now saturated. However if you already have an iPad, why switch and go out and purchase another from a different vendor?

        Same goes for the home heating market. You invest in a working system, who wants to now toss out a perfectly good working system?

        And I see nothing in this e-cat design that “prevents” from updating the core. In fact it looks quite possible! And with such smaller modules, then even home units likely could be updated over time. So changing of JUST the core looks to be rather possible (if not better then most designs). And with an integrated core + controller, then a swap of the both looks to be rather possible also!

        So over time the chemical soup, or even halving the size of the core, or even switching over to hot-cats looks possible (with a hot cat, you simply increase the flow of water to remove more heat).

        The existing control system is highly based on software, and thus I see the design as rather flexibly for swapping out the small grape sized reactor with new types of cores in the future. In fact because of such modules, the rest of the pluming and most of the system can remain un-changed.

        Regards,
        Albert D. Kallal
        Edmonton, Alberta Canada

      • Omega Z

        Rossi has indicated that the design of the reactor is critical to the process. At the conclusion of the Lugano test when they cut the reactor open to extract the ash, he wouldn’t let them examine the internals of the reactor.

        He has also said that building bigger reactors is possible(50Kw, 100Kw, Etc), But that control becomes exponentially harder. Possibly what is learned from the smaller reactors will lead to the ability to control larger ones in the future. Unless of course, the nature of the beast forbids it. It’s also a possibility that the nature of the beast means that no 2 reactors will ever respond in the same manner & will always require separate control boards to properly function as a whole.

        I don’t understand peoples rush to have this technology handed over to the academics. NASA did great things in a very short time working with the pioneers of rocketry. After the academics took over, well, they’ve kind of shifted to neutral for the past 30 years.

        Apparently, Some at NASA have become aware of this. They have begun farming things out to the private sector with a new bunch of pioneers. Some apparently want to do something other then fly in circles around this big blue marble.

        • MasterBlaster7

          Lets also remember that there is no acceptable theory for LENR. It is all trial and error. How do you fully optimize a system without knowing how it truly works?

          I think the true worth of the academics is figuring out the theory of LENR…not designing the products.

          I think the true worth of THIS e-cat plant is to make a commercially successful device…that saves the customer money. That is it.

          The true worth of this plant is to make the MSM and MSS do a 180 on LENR. Then the brains and money will flow freely.

    • Alan DeAngelis

      With a lot of small units instead of one big one you get better heat exchange.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZU7Kvkk4js

  • chad

    Hello all,

    I’ve been lurking a long time but this is my first post. I have been thinking about the 1 MW plant since we saw the tinfoil version early on. After reading steve’s post I thought I would contribute my suppositions. I have to agree with Steve in one sense, that this plant design is a terrible design for 1 MW plant. Any engineer looking at it and it’s Rube Goldberg-ness can easily think up a bunch of ways to do it much more eloquently.

    Having 100 parallel 10kw (or what ever) reactors in a shipping container is far from 1 MW unit ready for consumers. This thing should be a meter cubed with a cold water pipe coming in a hot water pipe going out and an Ethernet connection and three phase power. So I agree the design is dumb for 1 MW heater.

    However it is a perfect design for a 100 unit-year test facility. It’s a device in a customer’s location that provides inexpensive thermal energy for what ever process needs it. Chances are pretty good the customers not actually paying for this. It gets free or discounted energy for the deal. While Rossi and IH get 100 units running for a year straight compiling mounds of data and unit operational hours. This will go a long way toward securing patents and providing evidence for certification. If they have 100 units running for year that’s effectively 100 years worth of time accumulated for the smaller devices. It would be my guess is that the 1 MW units true purpose is to simply rack up hours, BTU Data, longevity data, thermal data, and safety data. It’s just a big data gathering, over complicated test fixture.

    If this is all real, and I’m seeing less and less evidence that it isn’t, then you can bet IH and Rossi have lots of engineers and fluid dynamicists and thermal people and electronics people and everyone else figuring out how to scale this from very small to the very large. Costing the least amount of money to manufacture in the smallest volume possible. The design and its intention make perfect sense.

    If

    chad

    • EEStorFanFibb

      great post chad. i bet you’re correct. data, data data.

    • builditnow

      Agreed, It’s likely a 100 unit-year test facility to gain UL certification and patents.
      According to Rossi he applied for certification of this model and he is still trying to get it.
      He has to keep testing the same model he originally applied for.
      A new model would start the certification process over from close to scratch.

  • Omega Z

    Steve W

    I believe this pilot plant incorporates many changes that are not visually appreciated. Like a Cat/Mouse reactor & that everything fits within the Container which wasn’t the case in the former 1Mw plant in which most of the plumbing was external & E-cats on the roof. The E-cats have shrank.

    If you have something that works, you stay with it. Major changes in short periods of time can easily derail everything. This is a new technology, poorly understood & every step is a learning process. Improvements will be incremental for a long time.

    Due to the fact that this is a poorly understood technology, I would suggest that this 1Mw pilot plant is a actually a learning platform. Each reactor has it’s own control module & can be individually removed from the system.

    With this in mind, many have complained that Rossi has 1 pilot plant instead of many. With the design of this pilot plant, Rossi actually has 100 E-cat plants all contained within a 1Mw pilot plant. He has data acquisition for every E-cat reactor. If some explicable issue arises with a single reactor, he can remove it & study the issue while the plant continues in operation.
    I feel this is a well thought out process for the task at hand.

    For those who think products go from concept to product in a short period of time, That is a myth. The I-phone which is actually just improvements of old existing technology took 6-8 years from concept to the 1st I-phone sold in the market.

    Since the 1st I-phone, All improvements have been incremental in nature. Slight advancement in Chip technology & energy management, increased memory as it has scaled down & improved programming code.

    I have not seen 1 major advancement in phones since the famous- (10 March 1876) “Mr. Watson — Come here — I want to see you”. It has all been incremental & a blending of different technologies. The Cell phone itself is nothing but an advanced radio technology(Walkie Talkie) using towers to connect beyond it’s local range.

  • builditnow

    Steve W, you missed the point.
    Rossi is going for UL certification of the “old” E-Cat that he applied for certification for a couple of years back. You cannot UL certify one product and apply the certification to a different product, hence the old E-Cat is logging the hours required by UL.
    New products are in the pipeline, be happy 🙂

  • Gerard McEk

    So this is the first commercially designed prototype and you want it to be about ten years ahead in design. You forget all the steps you need to do to make a commercial plant. That alone takes a lot of time. And yes also IH has a say in it for their customers, they spend $ 13 M. Now IH/Rossi have a monopoly on this product. Only when others start to make a similar LENR products, sophisticated design will take off and competition will force the development. Although I tend to agree that everything goes slow, I believe that it goes quick enough for the phase it is in.

  • GreenWin

    Industrial Heat is at the moment a holding company for the rights it purchased from Rossi. They have zero need or desire to demonstrate anything to the public. IH is managed by eco-conscious businessmen supported by investors looking to commercialize this technology for ROI and humanitarian purposes. It is perplexing to hear demands that Rossi do this and IH do that – AS IF they have something still to prove. They do not.
    However, you have some good ideas for reactor design and control. Why not do your own Parkamhov and try out your ideas. The bill of materials is reasonable and you seem to have an engineering background. I would love to see a molten salt cooled/buffered reactor! Remember too, “If you build it, they will come.”

    • SteveW

      I completely agree, IH has no responsibility to demonstrate anything. Frankly, if I was IH, I would say nothing or show nothing. Furthermore, unlike others I demand nor expect nothing from IH. However, if they do decide to disclose information I do have the right to say what I think about it. As far as the hot cat is concerned, I’m not making a demand that they disclose information about the original E-cat, I am just making an inference that the hot-cat is in reality meant for public display because it does not contain the same level of IP that the original e-cat posses. I didn’t arrive at this conclusion lightly, it took two weeks of brainstorming a reactor design to figure out the hot-cat is a dead end and not a good choice for a reactor core. It is however a good bone to throw to those trying to do a replication effort. The extreme high level of heat will throw most off and if they do succeed in getting some excess heat, any device will be commercially impractical.

  • GreenWin

    Steve, this is a hand built prototype plant. Of course it is big and bulky and perhaps greatly inefficient in design. This system appears to be based on the original 1MW concept tested in 2011 – with better component parts and plumbing. Which makes the plant just fine for its prototype purpose.

    What you may find interesting is the STMicroelectronics LENR patent — http://www.e-catworld.com/2013/09/23/st-microelectronics-files-lenr-patent/
    This device is made by a giant chip manufacturer and may indicate the potential for chip-centric LENR systems in the future. Given the potential for a solid state LENR device, there are thousands of design and engineering opportunities that address your concerns.
    I think we let the good Dr. Rossi finish his year long prototype burn-in proving a commercial MTBF rate and then consider design improvements, simplification, size reductions, etc. Walk before jog. 🙂

  • Frechette

    Can you imagine having to replace a failed fuel rod in this so called heat exchanger sealed reactor? Rossi needs to get data on reliability of his

  • EEStorFanFibb

    I don’t get this post either. The plant looks a lot more sophisticated than previous iterations. It’s a work in progress done in semi-stealth. I’m nothing but encouraged by these pics.

  • Oceans2014

    The writer goes on for five paragraphs about what is wrong with Rossi tech yet never gives a hint of what he would suggest differently, could it be that Steve is working on a Top Secret engineering project breaking new frontiers in electronics.

    Maybe SteveW will make a follow-up post and explain his concerns and vision for this project ?

  • Sanjeev

    SteveW, how did you completely miss the hot-cat ?
    Its made by IH without any help from Rossi, as both IH and Rossi have officially announced. IH took the plumbing nightmare of Rossi and turned it into a pencil sized device capable of producing KWs for months on just 1 gram of fuel. It is such a big breakthrough that its off limits on the Ragone chart. We have seen its glimpse in the Lugano report.
    So I do not understand how can IH be amateurish. They are secretive and opaque, but not incompetent.

    Now, we do not know the purpose of this 1 MW “ancient” plant of Rossi’s. May be that’s what the customer want and that’s what he paid for many years ago. May be its purpose is to get the certificates, patents and to convince the investors. Wait for the big event, the launch of 1 MW plant is only a start. (Hopefully !)

  • SteveA

    This is the type of project that should have hundreds of engineers and researchers working on it, if not thousands. If Wall Street were completely convinced that it was a home run the funding would be there for a team such as this. I don’t believe the irrefutable proof has been demonstrated yet for investors to open up their wallets to finance this type of team. There are still too many people shouting “scam” so no body wants to be the one that bet their clients money and lost. Do we have any idea how many people are working at IH now? A few dozen? To me the choice of the 1 mW was a little odd since the cost just to scale it up to this level is enormous. A smaller 10 kW system would be much easier and more inexpensive for a proof of concept to put out in the field, but I guess that isn’t what their customer wanted.

    • Omega Z

      A 10Kw E-cat would be of little use in an Industrial setting.
      That is the equivalent of 3 burners on your cook stove. About 34K Btu’s.

  • mcloki

    What a modern age we live in. Everyone wants iPhone levels of quality from every product. Even a hot water heater. Which all the E-cat is. It’s a heating element. How sexy does it have to be? All I want is heat delivered to an application. I’m not showing off my e-cat to anyone. It’s a backroom, basement type of machine. The application of industrial design can come after they have worked out the kinks. The boxes that the e-cat are in now are for easy access so changes and improvements and most of all learning can be done easily. Once they have maximized the potential then they can worry about miniaturization.
    This “Design question” is a red herring. Rossi isn’t building a known object like a car or a cake. He’s creating a new device or a new recipe. It’s more art than application of engineering. Essentially this is what hard work looks like, though I doubt many would know it to see it.

  • Nigel Appleton

    Why should it be expected that this would be a production-ready item? The mission was to demonstrate long-term running. It is probable that this will be accomplished. A huge amount will have been learnt that simply would not have been learnt from something of fixed format and design. It is essential at this stage to be able to tweak – or indeed make radical changes. Slotting in different sensors, different pumps, reprogramming,

    I think we can be sure that lessons will have been learnt, ideas tested, designs improved, miniaturisations proposed and efficiencies identified.

    And, you know, in my own (biological) field, I have often benefited by being second or third in the market, learning from the ways the “trailblazers” fell flat on their faces by over-hasty product launch