Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Evidence on the transmutation of heavy elements

I've reactivated this blog after a hiatus of several months.  At some point sometime back I joined the vortex-l mailing list.  This is perhaps the best place to find the latest news and commentary on what's going on with cold fusion.  I still have quite a bit to learn about the basic science involved in LENR.  Sometimes, however, I like to jump into a technical thread, which I invariably seem to turn into a philosophical discussion; for example, there was this exchange today:

The present mode of academic research, of excluding from consideration anything that has not been entered into the official record, is only suitable for legal courts and the obtaining of tenure.  It's not the most efficient way of getting at the truth by any means, and as I become more and more familiar with academic research, I'm grateful not to feel bound by it.

Also, over the weekend, I somehow felt confident enough to offer the outlines of my own theory about what is going on with LENR, which proceeds from a recent article in Science that discusses a new quasi-particle that is created from a photon and an electron.  The basic idea is this:  when hydrogen atoms are drawn into the nickel lattice, the electrons and protons are dissociated, and the electrons enter into the free moving electrons of the metal.  Then comes along a high energy photon, which combines with one of the electrons, creating the new quasi-particle, a so-called "dipolariton."  The new particle is a boson rather than a fermion and is a static dipole, apparently meaning it has a positive and a negative charge.  I would imagine that the negative side is instantly attracted to a nearby proton, and because the two are not both fermions, they readily combine, yielding a high energy photon and a slow neutron.  The photon bounces around a cavity in the metal lattice until it combines with another electron, starting the process anew.

The slow neutrons react primarily with impurities in the lattice.  I'm guessing that any palladium atoms that it encounters quickly re-emit it.  For reasons that have yet to be worked out, the reaction only takes place between free protons and free electrons, so you have to have a flux of hydrogen, which agrees with the evidence.

I'll need to look into the possible Pd-104(n,*) reactions and what their half-lives are.  I also need to better understand Fermi-Dirac statistics, Einstein-Bose statistics, the possible interactions between fermions and bosons.

In the exchange above, with a fellow by the name of Abd ul-Rahman, who is quite knowledgeable about particle physics, he presented additional details on Peter Hagelstein's latest thinking as well as an experiment that is being prepared for publication.  He primarily took issue with the specifics of Widom and Larsen's theory, while I was concerned solely with neutron flux as a general phenomenon, and to a certain extent I think we ended up speaking past one another.  But he mentioned that there are questions about reliability of the evidence on transmutations, and I need to better understand these issues.  What he mentioned about Peter Hagelstein's work with lasers also squares well with my dipolariton explanation, although he's looking at a Bose-Einstein condensate of deuterons and at specific laser frequencies, and I don't have any opinion on these things yet.

Here are some links to further reading that came up during the thread:
  • "About the possibility of decreased radioactivity of heavy nuclei," http://www.osti.gov/energycitations/product.biblio.jsp?osti_id=512913
  • "Cold Fusion and Decrease of Tritium Radioactivity," http://www.lenr-canr.org/acrobat/Reifenschwcoldfusion.pdf
  • "Reduced radioactivity of tritium in small titanium particles," http://www.lenr-canr.org/acrobat/Reifenschwreducedrad.pdf
  • "Debate Between Douglas Morrison and Stanley Pons & Martin Fleischmann," http://lenr-canr.org/acrobat/Fleischmanreplytothe.pdf
  • "Robert Godes of Brillouin Energy Comments on LENR Research," http://www.e-catworld.com/2012/04/robert-godes-of-brillouin-energy-comments-on-lenr-research/
  • "Carbon nanotubes: The weird world of 'remote Joule heating,'" http://phys.org/news/2012-04-carbon-nanotubes-weird-world-remote.html
  • "10th International Workshop on Anomalies in Hydrogen Loaded Metals" (abstracts), http://www.iscmns.org/work10/Abstracts.pdf

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