On the Vortex-l mailing list today, Jones Beene published an interesting account that was related to Brian Ahern by Nelson Gernert, who was the chief researcher Thermacore, Inc., a company involved in thermal engineering where experiments were carried out with nickel powder in 1996.
Gernert added 2.5 pounds of nickel powder (200 mesh of Ni-200) into a 3 liter stainless steel Dewar. The Dewar weighed 300 pounds. It was a strong pressure vessel with a hemispherical volume. Thermacore evacuated the nickel under vacuum for several days before adding H2 gas at 2 atmospheres (apparently there was no potassium but this detail needs to be verified).
The most amazing thing happened next. The powder immediately and spontaneously heated before external power could be added. The Dewar glowed orange (800C) and the engineers ran for cover. No external heat had been used and no radiation monitors were running. The nickel had sintered into a glob alloyed into the vessel and could not be removed.
The (then) owner of Thermacore, Yale Eastman was frightened that an explosion was imminent and that someone could be killed. He forbade any further work on LENR. The incident was not published.
The link to the full text of the post is here: https:[email protected]/msg110068.html