US Defense Threat Reduction Agency Releases LENR Report — “Investigation of Nano-Nuclear Reactions in Condensed Matter”

Thanks to Joseph J for posting about a report that has been published by the US Defense Threat Reduction Agencey (DTRA) titled “Investigation of Nano-Nuclear Reactions in Condensed Matter”. The report is written by Pamela Mosier-Boss of SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific, Lawrence Forsely of JWK International and Patrick K. McDaniel of the University of New Mexico.

According to Wikipedia the DTRA “is an agency within the United States Department of Defense and is the official Combat Support Agency for countering weapons of mass destruction (chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and high explosives). DTRA’s main functions are threat reduction, threat control, combat support, and technology development. The agency is headquartered in Fort Belvoir, Virginia”

It is not clear to me exactly when the report was written, but the final page of the document shows a form which shows when various approvals have been given. The most recent references listed in the report are from 2012, so it appears that it has been circulating within the agency for a few years prior to this release. This paper was given approval for public release on Jun 7 2016 by the Public Affairs department of the DTRA.

The report itself is very lengthy and from a cursory reading is an analysis of the scientific evidence for nuclear reactions occurring in the metal lattice in LENR systems. The report focuses on the palladium-deuterium systems which were introduced in 1989 by Pons and Fleischmann.

The report can be accessed at the LENR-CANR site here: http://lenr-canr.org/acrobat/MosierBossinvestigat.pdf, and I have uploaded it to ECW here: http://www.e-catworld.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/MosierBossinvestigat.pdf

There is a lot of detail in the report that will be no doubt interesting and useful to researchers and replicators, and I would imagine important to the work that the MFMP is doing at the University of Aarhus now. Below are some excerpts of points I found to be of particular interest.

“At the time of the [Pons and Fleischmann] announcement in 1989, SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific scientists were involved in developing batteries for torpedo propulsion. The lead scientist in those torpedo propulsion efforts, Stanislaw Szpak, was aware of the Fleischmann–Pons experiment prior to the press conference and knew about the long incubation times needed to fully load bulk Pd with D. To reduce the incubation time, he developed the Pd/D co-deposition process as a means to initiate low energy nuclear reactions (LENR) inside the Pd lattice. In this process, working and counter electrodes are immersed in a solution of palladium chloride and lithium chloride in deuterated water (p. 1).

[. . .]

“The Pd/D co-deposition process has been shown to provide a reproducible means of manufacturing Pd-D nano-alloys that induce low energy nuclear reactions (LENRs). Cyclic voltammetry (2,3) and galvanostatic pulsing (4) experiments indicate that, by using the co-deposition technique, a high degree of deuterium loading (with an atomic ratio D/Pd>1) is obtained within seconds. These experiments also indicate the existence of a D2+ species within the Pd lattice. Because an ever expanding electrode surface is created, non-steady state conditions are assured, the cell geometry is simplified because there is no longer a need for a uniform current distribution on the cathode, and long charging times are eliminated. (5)

“By using the Pd/D co-deposition technique and co-depositional variants (6) (based on flux control(7,8)), solid evidence (i.e., excess heat generation,(7,9,10), hot spots, (11) mini-explosions, ionizing radiation, (12) near- IR emission, (13) tritium production, (14) transmutation, (15) and neutrons (16)) has been obtained that indicate that lattice assisted nuclear reactions can and do occur within the Pd lattice. (p. 2) . . .

“Besides LENR, the Pd/H(D) system exhibits superconductivity. Palladium itself does not superconduct. However, it was found that H(D)/Pd does and that the critical temperatures of the deuteride are about 2.5 K higher than those of hydride (at the same atomic ratios).(19) (p. 2)

[. . .]

“Once understood, LENR has the potential to be a paradigm-shifting, ‘game-changing’ technology. Nuclear energy systems have power densities six orders of magnitude greater than chemically-based energy generation or storage systems. The ability to harness a new nuclear energy source for either thermal or electrical conversion, without the generation of penetrating energetic particles, would have a profound commercial and military impact ranging from small footprint power systems to mobile systems to larger stationary power systems. Depending on how the technology scales, it could be used as a power source for expeditionary warfare and military bases as well as surface ships/submarines; nuclear battery for autonomous C4I operations (communications, computers, satellites); and long duration UAV and USV ops (propulsion). Such a technology would have a profound effect upon one of the U.S. and DoD’s largest financial and environmental costs: burning hydrocarbons from imported oil and gas with their attendant CO2 footprint. Indeed, many U.S. military actions this century, and the most costly in the 1990’s, have been driven by, or consequences of, the geopolitics of oil. Decreasing the use of foreign oil would result in both an energy savings and a reduction in US military presence, and fleet costs, in maintaining access to foreign oil and natural reserves.

“The natural uranium witness material experiments suggest that LENR can be used to create a hybrid fusion-fast fission reactor. Fusion is neutron rich but energy poor while fission is neutron poor but energy rich. Figure 3-1 illustrates the concept of behind a hybrid reactor that combines rich fusion neutrons with rich fission energy. A hybrid fusion-fast fission system capable of fissioning fissile, or fertile, actinides has an impact on nuclear power systems and the remediation of nuclear waste.

“The 23 years of LENR research at SSC Pacific has resulted in 33 publications, 42 presentations/posters/conference proceedings, three technical reports, and one patent. A complete bibliography can be found in Appendix I. (p. 83)

[. . .]

“There are indications that the field of LENR is slowly gaining acceptance. The Environmental Division of ACS has hosted five New Energy Technologies symposia between 2007 and 2011 and published two symposium books. Katherine Sanderson of Nature reported on the March 2007 ACS symposium that was held in Chicago, IL. She reported that the program chair for the session (not a cold fusion scientist) was impressed by the results that were presented
and was ‘keeping an open mind on the matter.’ As for herself, she said she was initially skeptical. After seeing the presentations, she indicated, ‘Cold fusion? I don’t know, but the evidence that something weird is happening is there. Maybe it’s time to think about this again…’

“On March 26, 2012, Mosier-Boss and Forsley were invited by Dr. Michael Adams of Xavier University to speak at the ACS Undergraduates Technical Symposium on “Nuclear Power Generation – Lessons from Fukushima Daiichi and Future Directions.” These presentations are included in Appendix III. (p. 86)

[. . .]

On November 2011, the LENR research at SSC-Pacific was terminated. The official reason given by SSC-Pacific’s PAO, Jim Fallin, to Steve Krivit of New Energy Times for the termination the LENR work at SSC-Pacific is:

“In response to your recent query,” Fallin wrote, “while I won’t discuss details of our internal decision-making processes, I will confirm SPAWAR plans no further low-energy nuclear reaction (LENR) research. There are other organizations within the federal government that are better aligned to continue research regarding nuclear power. We have taken initial steps to determine how a transition of low-energy nuclear reaction (LENR) research might occur.

“The implications of this statement are that both SPAWAR HQ and SSC-Pacific say that the phenomenon is real and that it is nuclear in nature. (p. 87)

“Initial criticism of the purported Pd/D low energy nuclear reactions centered upon the phenomena’s reproducibility. Many years later this was understood to be due to the long incubation times required to fully load the Pd with deuterium. However, early on, Dr. Stanislaw Szpak, an electrochemist at the Naval laboratory in San Diego, developed an alternative method of initiating low energy nuclear reactions using Pd/D co-deposition. In this process palladium metal is plated out in the presence of deuterium gas. The advantages of this approach are that the palladium metal loads instantly with deuterium, the experiments can be done faster, there is a great deal of experimental flexibility, and the experiments are reproducible. Other groups from SRI, UCSD, Texas A & M, the Navy Laboratory in China Lake, and Berkeley have obtained positive results using the co-deposition process.” (p. 96)

I am not sure what the internal protocols are within the DTRA regarding public release of documents, but its interesting to me that this report should have been given clearance for public release this summer.

  • http://www.animpossibleinvention.com/ Mats Lewan

    Washington based The Daily Caller, with 16.5 million unique visitors per month, just published this story:

    Feds May Have Made A Huge Breakthrough In Cold Fusion
    http://dailycaller.com/2016/09/11/feds-may-have-made-a-huge-breakthrough-in-cold-fusion/

  • bfast

    Thanks, TractorEngineer. I logged in to find just this information. ‘Seems that the stamp of approval hasn’t been given, that this is a pre-release document.

  • Albert D. Kallal

    Well, you have two issues.

    #1 – is LENR real, are their experiments that show excess heat?

    The answer is clearly yes.

    I mean when the first solar cell was developed, your response is why is industry not placing them on buildings? You mean someone invented a device that will turn sunlight into electricity without moving parts? That going make that person and company billions!

    The simple matter is solar panels were not ready for really any commercial application for a VERY long time. (50 or 60 years!) The first use of this technology was military and commercial satellites where budgets were un-limited.

    Any intelligent person who takes the time to study the evidence of LENR will most certainly conclude that the heat effect exists and an output (COP) of > 1 is possible. This is a reasonably intelligent conclusion.

    The problem is high output – and reasonable cost.

    #2 – is LENR real, why no commercial systems?

    Well, that goes back to when the first solar panel or solar cell was built – you did not by magic see solar panels on rooftops everywhere. Today you do!

    So the issue with LENR is not the MANY experiments that show excess heat. The issue is commercial output and viability of such systems. So just like the first solar cell that produced electricity from light, it would have been silly to ask how come industry is not putting such panels on rooftops.

    The question is not LENR, but WHEN the technology will reach commercial viability (or will it ever?).

    I never encounter ANYONE who’s spent time looking into LENR not walking away realizing it is real.

    A great video from CBS that spawned several startup LENR companies is this short CBS piece from 2009:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTvaX3vRtRA
    The above is a MUST watch video.

    MOST interesting in above is how CBS asked the APS (America Physics Society) to send them an independent physicist that could look into LENR for the CBS story.

    That person came back after visiting a lab in Israel. The physicist was shocked to realize that cold fusion (LENR) was real – despite all the mainstream news and press saying otherwise.

    I mean, Intel built the first computer on a chip. However, it was really 7+ years later that consumer computers for purchase became available. But the transistor only came out in the late 1950’s. And really, the first electronic computers only appeared in the 1940’s, and personal computers did not arrive until the late 1970’s. (so again 30+ years).

    When uranium was first discovered, the physics community scoffed at the idea that heat could occur without burning of some fuel. Heat without combustion was thought impossible! You mean some dirt can reaming in the ground and produce heat for 100’s of years without burning fuel?

    When the science community FINALLY accepted that heat could occur without burning fuel and some chemical reaction? To save the HUGE AMOUNTS OF EGG on their faces they said such heat will never be useful to mankind.

    And to be fair, it took about 50 years before working nuclear reactors were built after the discovery of this new energy source.

    So be it uranium and nuclear reactors, or solar cells – 50 years easy passed before such technologies became viable.

    And to be honest, I still think solar panels are science fiction and one of the most cool devices man has ever created.

    So LENR has several challenges:

    Breaking down the skeptics and fixing the idea that LENR is junk science lumped in with UFO groups.

    Reaching commercial viability.

    So what Rossi claims he has is very much like the Wright Brothers. MANY people stated if the Wright brothers REALLY do have a flying machine that can be controlled, then they can easily ask anyone a king’s ransom for such a technology.

    The other problem is the existing nuclear industry no more wants LENR then did the computer industry wanted personal computers.

    MIT has had a cold fusion course taught for several years now. All students receive a working LENR device that produces excess heat well beyond input power (and well beyond chemical heat). To be fair, the course is un-audited (noncredit), but it is kind of shocking that we have courses at MIT giving students working LENR devices, teaching them a cold fusion 101 course, and yet the VAST majority of the science community is still at the doubting stage!!! I

    It really shows the mess the science community is at today.

    So no need for a bunch of dry science papers on LENR – watch the CBS video, and visit ECW once a week!

    Regards,
    Albert D. Kallal
    Edmonton, Alberta Canada

  • Bernie Koppenhofer

    If you missed it Tom Conover’s “OOPS” post on JONP is a must read. (:

  • psi2u2

    You are missing the key factor of ethos. The report supplies ethos to already known or rumored findings.

  • radvar

    It’s simply amazing to me (rhetorical gambit, attempting to establish your sagacity) that you have posted a comment expressing such ignorance of LENR, innovation investment, and industrial secrecy.

  • Observer

    It has a copyright because not all of the authors were government employees at the time the report was produced.

  • sam

    I asked Douglas Natelson of Nanoscale
    view blog his opinion on the report.

    Douglas Natelson9:57 AM
    Sam, I flipped through it. The report does not really conform to what one would expect for a scientific paper, and the author takes it basically as a given that there are definitely low energy nuclear reactions happening, going all the way back to Pons and Fleischman in ’89. My views on this stuff have not changed since I wrote this or this, the passion of LENR supporters notwithstanding. The TL/DR version: It would be incredible and awesome if it were true, but I have yet to see experimental work that actually meets the standards of reproducibility one would expect for a real effect.

    • Bob Greenyer

      Of course – if a documents layout does not conform then the data must be invalid. Was he aware this is a report and not a paper?

      Granted – he admits to flipping through it, so perhaps he missed the reproducibility of the co-deposition technique.

      • georgehants

        Morning Bob, I think that until the day that MFMP can replicate reliably, any openly any report on a COP of 1+ Cold Fusion, or your own work from the incomplete information that you have to work with, then if is clear that Cold Fusion is nothing but unconfirmed scraps of information from sources that could or could not be fully relied on.
        Only closed-minded fools say it cannot be, open-minds sit as we have for five + years with Rossi etc. and keep hoping.
        Rossi, other than to instigate a very restricted body of interest, has in no way shown a single, indisputable, open demonstration, or information that others can follow now, that would confirm his claims.
        The now millions of arguments on the subject are all a complete waste of time.
        Until an open, repeatable publication is available to this World, far preferably unrestricted and free of patent crap, but if it must be, then a standard patent giving the necessary information to be replicated by anybody, skilled in the art, then we as always wait and hope.

        • Bob Greenyer

          Yes. And I do not care who does it either.

      • sam

        Bob
        I told Douglas about your work with Aarhus University.
        Gave him the link to your thread
        on Ecat world.
        So maybe he will take an interest in your work.
        Maybe you could reply to him on his July 30 blog ask me something as I did.
        Regards
        Sam