Rossi: 20 kW E-Cat X Reactor is Size of Cigarette Packet

Andrea Rossi has answered a question from a reader on the Journal of Nuclear Physics about the size of the E-Cat X reactor.

Dear Mr Rossi,
What would be the weight and the volume (perhaps liters) of a 20 kw e-cat x reactor?
Thank you.

Andrea Rossi

January 13th, 2016 at 5:15 PM
Ballpark numbers: like a 20 cigarette packet, while the weight c ould be 300-400 grams, plus the apparatus to use the energy, that is different depending on the use, the fluid, etc.
Warm Regards,

So that gives a bit more detail to help us try and visualize just what the E-Cat X is like. If it turns out to be what Andrea Rossi says, it would certainly be a revolutionary product. Getting 20 kW in a combination of electricity and heat in something the size of a normal cigarette packet would be truly remarkable for something that is not radioactive and uses only a tiny amount of fuel.

Rossi has said that the E-Cat X can be scaled down to produce only a few watts — so a miniature E-Cat would be tiny compared to the cigarette-package sized reactor. And he said you could stack them together to make power outputs of any size.

  • LarryJ

    Not really. That is anecdotal evidence. The current 1 year test is of a 1 MW reactor powering some industrial process that uses a substantial amount of heat 24/7. The evidence is being monitored by a 3rd party expert who has been retained to determine if the reactor performs to the specifications in the contract between Industrial Heat and the customer. If successful that would demonstrate safe industrial operation.

  • LarryJ

    Unfortunately certification issues have prevented him from doing as you suggest. Hi initial plan was to produce and sell domestic heaters. He then discovered that to get certification for domestic use he would have to first demonstrate safe operation in an industrial setting. This is what prompted him to embark on his current path with the 1 MW industrial reactor, a much more difficult task than a simple water heater.

  • Robyn Wyrick

    Sorry, but this is clearly a false statement.

    Rossi “rumored” that the E-Cat did amazing things, and it was being tested by a group of 3rd-party testers. He was correct. They did “see” something, and then they recorded what it did, and published their findings. Then they ran a longer 6 month test, and again, published their results. AND from that publication, other researchers have claimed replication.

    AND Rossi claimed that an American company had bought the rights – presumably having “seen” it – and that again turned out to be true.

    It appears that a great many people have “seen” this amazing achievement.

    There is simply no basis in fact for your comment.

  • Thomas Kaminski

    It is easily to believe that a 20KW power source could be packed into a package the size of a cigarette pack. What is a bit harder to believe is that there could also be a heat exchanger in that volume. To see what I mean, below is a 7.2KW “instant” water heater (30Amps at 240 volts) compared to a pencil in the picture. The u-shaped copper loop is the pipe through which water flows. That is both the heat exchanger and the heater. The volume of the heater plus heat exchanger is probably slightly more than the size of a pack of cigarettes. It was one of three heaters that were used to heat 2.5PGM of water (driven off 3-phase, 208 Delta) for solar thermal array testing.

  • Owen Geiger

    “sell the rumor”? Was that intentional? Rossi is not taking our money.

  • Mike Ivanov

    Were is a big IF in very beginning :). We just do not know, what is this. All things I know so far – Lugano experiment has been more or less successfully reproduced in Russia, m.b. somewhere else. This only “peer” review for whole Rossi story so far. Everything else is a buzz and few fancy photos of 1MW box.

  • Axil Axil

    Keep the FUD flying. When the truth is revailed, this is who will be coming after it.

  • LarryJ

    Where’s your sense of wonder. We are unlikely to see anything concrete until there is product on the market and by then the speculation and opportunity for talk talk talk will be over. It’s true that much of the evidence is anecdotal but there is also much to give it substance. If the Lugano report does not convince you that the reaction is nuclear and gives a cop > 1 then you are a person who will probably not find much to interest you here. Most of us here do have a sense of wonder and love to talk talk talk and speculate about how the world is about to change. We also appreciate Rossi’s rumours or what others might call openness.

  • Pekka Janhunen

    Looked up moletrap rule, it says “You may find it difficult to be banned from the forum but it is possible.” Congratulations, because it seems you made some kind of achievement, then. Almost entirely but not quite different from “you may find it difficult to reproduce LENR on demand, but it’s possible”…

    But, more seriously, based on his posting for a month or so, I think Rossi is proceeding in the direction you want him to go.

    • Omega Z

      Actually Pekka, If Orbo should work, it would be a better fit to smaller energy needs Of course the price needs to come down just a “little bit” 🙂
      Anyway, we may have an answer to that soon.

  • Roland
  • Roland

    lol, the comparison has admittedly limited validity, as it’s apples and oranges, however it does broadly address incredulity in certain quarters at Rossi’s implied device volume to power output. I could have gone further by noting that top dragsters make 1,000 HP/litre, but that’s for all of 4 seconds between rebuilds.

    So to answer your question, no, not only doesn’t that include the fuel tank it doesn’t even include the engine surrounding the displacement volume where the fuel is actually burned, but that’s how ICEs are rated and compared. In Ferrari’s case the the total system volume and weight are highly pertinent to overall competitiveness.

    To date we have no guidance from Rossi as to the volume or weight of the ancillary systems required to make use of the E-cat X’s output; we could, however, conjecture that the ability to directly produce electricity would minimize the volume and weight requirements of the total system, especially if drawing electrons from the system can contribute to thermal stability in some fashion thereby reducing the need for a liquid based cooling system for thermal management and energy harvesting.

  • Alan Smith

    Hi Clovis – you want to feel a heat superconductor? Get a piece of rebar about a foot (30cms) long. Get a couple of inches at one end really red/yellow hot. Then dip the red hot end in cold water. But be careful – you might burn yourself. The cool end suddenly gets too hot to hold.


    Thermal phonons can move much faster than simple thermal conductivity of iron allows for. There are other explanations -but it is a bit wierd the first time you get caught out by the phenomenon.

  • Pekka Janhunen

    I’m too lazy to dig up numbers and references and perhaps your numbers are right, but I recall that a trick in thermophotovoltaics is to use an emitter surface which emits only at one IR wavelength. Then one obtains optimum efficiency plus one obtains it using a cheaper single junction cell. This just came to my mind since you mentioned heterojunction.

    Rossi has been going after direct conversion for at least four years. I think his strive to increase the running temperature is related to that. I have no idea what he did to finally cork the bottle, but it may have been preceded by substantial development work.

    That said, I remain open to other explanations.

  • mcloki

    On Earth. Desalination, allowing new land to be farmed . Giving California, Northern Africa and the Middle east the ability to transform dry arid land into productive farmland.

  • Frank

    PT Barnum did not coin “There’s a sucker born every minute”, but, after following Rossi’s efforts for several years, the phrase rings true. I’ve lost hope that Rossi has real stuff. But, if the 20 KW power supply the size of a cigarette pack really can be sold, I’ll buy it and hook it up to a 20KW distrubition panel in a heartbeat.

    • LarryJ

      You should not let unrealistic expectations get you down. This tech is coming at us like a fast freight train. Rossi didn’t start off knowing how difficult it would be to bring this to market and it has been less than 5 years since his big demo. One year of which was spent testing his first product. He has learned a lot while traveling a very bumpy road. But now we know that he has a team behind him that can make it happen, and in as non disruptive a way as possible.

      We all wish we could have proof positive that this is all real and of course a watched pot never boils but this is not just a better mousetrap. It will trigger a massive paradigm shift. It would not help at all if Rossi did another demo and even if he did the best it would do is create a lot of Fear Uncertainty & Doubt. Fast adoption of this technology is critical to ensure a swift and non disruptive transition as possible. The only way that can happen is if everyone is absolutely convinced at almost the same time and if there is adequate product available to meet the massive demand that realization will create. The only way to do that is to have tons of product available to sell, the day you announce that it’s real. Even then, many won’t believe it which will give an advantage to those that do and allow production to keep up to demand but that advantage won’t last long if Rossi’s plans for massive production are realized. If the transition is swift enough that anyone who wants it can buy it with a reasonable delivery time then there will be very little disruption. The worst disruption will be in the fossil fuel industry but the re invigoration of the economy should easily allow the absorption of those people, many of whom are highly skilled. People and investment funds who invested in what will be stranded assets paid their money and took their chances. Speculation is a double edged sword. Chin up.

  • LarryJ

    Suppose you are a greenhouse operator and your competitor across the street starts heating his greenhouse with an ecat. He doesn’t have to kill your price, he just has to beat it. All of a sudden he’s eating your lunch. Because he has now added your customers to his portfolio he can expand more rapidly than you. Surprise! one day he’s on your doorstep offering to buy you out because he knows exactly how to make your operation competitive again.

    The danger with Rossi’s technology is that if one group is able to implement the technology before other groups it would greatly tilt the playing field in an unfair way. I believe Rossi is quite aware of this problem which is why he so badly wants to have massive production capabilities in place before he markets his products. That would greatly minimize the damage.

    • artefact

      In the beginning they should sell limited amounts of reactor power per person/company so that the new fire is distributed more evenly. Everyone saves some money but no one has the power to rule over others because of the cheap energy.

      • LarryJ

        It would be better to flood the market. That would guarantee an even distribution without having to implement difficult to manage quotas and would also avoid a black market. Remember that these devices do not appear difficult to manufacture. A smartphone is orders of magnitude more complex.

        • artefact

          That would work. But I guess gouvernments will want to have the rollout controlled to not disrupt the global market too much.

          • LarryJ

            If we had a worldwide authoritarian government I could see that happening but we don’t yet. Any government that tries to slow the distribution of this technology will be in exactly the same boat as the greenhouse operator who refuses to upgrade. The countries that allow fast adoption will eat the lunch of those that put roadblocks in the way. I think the only governments that would react in the manner you describe would be authoritarian governments with nothing to lose who would fear what this technology could do to their hold on power. North Korea is in the news lately. I would not be surprised if they agreed with a very controlled roll out.

            • artefact

              I do not disagree with you. I just see a possibility (to whatever percentage) that, in face of such a big change, the big industrial countries may have/will agreed on some common rules to protect the global economy since all countries have one global market that effects all.

            • TomR

              LarryJ, thank you for sharing your thoughts, I am in agreement with almost everything you have said these last few days.

  • Pekka Janhunen

    Thermophotovoltaics is not the same as thermoelectric. I’m not sure if you mixed them or made a typo.

  • artefact

    Like making Mars a better place or
    building underground caverns on the moon.

    • Steven Irizarry takes more than energy to terraform mars

      • artefact

        on Wiki:
        “The overall energy required to sublimate the CO2 from the south polar ice cap is modeled by Zubrin and McKay. Raising temperature of the poles by 4 K would be necessary in order to trigger a runaway greenhouse effect. If using orbital mirrors, an estimated 120 MWe-years would be required in order to produce mirrors large enough to vaporize the ice caps. This is considered the most effective method, though the least practical.”

        The most effective but least practical method may become the most practical with lots of cheap energy heating the caps directly.

  • Jarea

    Bob please, keep commenting here. Some of your comments are really good and informative.

    • I agree. Bob’s comments are generally considered, interesting and informative, if rather one-sided. I think it’s important that we try to avoid falling into the trap of unquestioning acceptance of AR’s claims, and commenters such as Bob provide the necessary counterbalance.

      I’m sure that admin was just issuing a gentle warning to keep within posting guidelines, and I hope that Bob stays with us and continues to provide the cautionary element that a balanced discussion requires.

    • Andreas Moraitis

      I had also no problems with Bob’s posts. Besides, I have seen hundreds of ‘repetitive’ comments on this blog that have not been criticized or removed.

  • Jarea

    Really? thanks frank? He just copied what Rossi has posted here in a comment and you wanted to kick him?. Not fair.