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UPDATE ON PENDING FEED IN TARIFF (FIT)
The Price of Oil: As it goes up, American wealth evaporates
Glancing at the oil price chart above, is it any wonder the S&P500 has done practically nothing in the last decade? Meantime, is it any wonder many oil stocks have doubled or more in that same time span? Of course not.
But is it true that America's addiction to foreign oil can cause unrest in Egypt?
America spends around $1 billion dollars per day on foreign oil. Oil is by far the largest component of the foreign trade deficit. As a result, America's wealth is being steadily and increasingly sucked out of the country and sent to foreign oil producers. These are not opinions and a PhD in economics is not required to understand such a basic concept. These are facts. Now, in order to make up for this dependency on foreign oil (and the U.S. government's inability to acknowledge the problem and enact logical policy fixes) the United States long ago decided to reject the gold standard and allow the Federal Reserve to print money out of thin air. And this is exactly what the Fed has been doing - printing money out of thin air and devaluing the U.S. dollar.
Printing money out of thin air is enabling America to "fund" the oil war in Iraq. It allows the U.S. to "fund" its military so it can act as "policemen of the world". It allows the U.S. government to "fund" deficit spending. And it enables China to take an increasingly large ownership stake in America by virtue of their huge holdings in U.S. Treasury bonds. Most recently, the Fed has attempted to "re-inflate" the stagnate U.S. economy by implementing a $600 billion dollar "QE2" program. As I have written before, this $600 billion dollars might buy us, at most, 600 days of "economic prosperity" (remember, oil imports are about $1 billion per day). Although the U.S. dollar has not dropped as much as I expected the result of such misguided and illogical policy is to inflate commodity prices - specifically oil and food. As such, we have seen investors flock to commodities including oil, gold, wheat, corn, and other foodstuffs. [ I should mention here, the only reason the U.S. dollar has not depreciated further is because it is the least bad currency out there. Once the Chinese figure out they cannot solve their inflation problem without letting the Yuan appreciate, you will see a substantial move lower in the U.S. dollar. ]
So: "QE2" --> higher oil prices --> more $'s leaving the U.S. --> need more "QE"
(or, as we say in engineering, thermal runaway ...)
Making things even worse is American policymakers' support and expansion of the idiotic ethanol mandates. As I have written many times before this is a seriously misguided policy which merely causes huge dislocations in the food markets. Supposedly this policy is because Iowa is such an important state when it comes to Presidential elections. However, the good farmers in Iowa will one find out that they too are part of the U.S.A. and spend the same greenbacks as do citizens in every other state. A serious devaluation of the U.S. dollar will affect all Americans - even farmers in Iowa. So I repeat myself yet again: Ethanol is simply a tool by government and oil industry lobbyists to keep Americans addicted to liquid gasoline (i.e. foreign oil) when we should be transitioning to cheaper, cleaner, and domestic gaseous fuels (i.e. natural gas and hydrogen).
My readers already know I support natural gas transportation as the focal point of a strategic long-term comprehensive energy policy to reduce foreign oil imports and the need to print money out of thin air to "fund" this addiction. However, nothing is more a testament to pathetic U.S. energy policy than was an article last week's Wall Street Journal titled "Gas Exports Fuel Debate." The article discusses how Freeport LNG Development and Cheniere Energy (LNG) are making plans to export American natural gas. Think about this for a second or two. Our country is going to export a clean and cheap domestic fuel (natural gas) so that we can import an expensive and dirty foreign fuel (oil)! This ranks right up there with the oxymoronic "clean coal" initiative as how dumb American energy policymakers must appear to the rest of the world. So, as countries like Brazil, Pakistan, Singapore, Iran, Italy and even China are adopting natural gas transportation, the U.S. continues to ignore it even as the cost of our domestic natural gas is less than half what most of these countries are paying. This is unacceptable.
But to sum things up: Ben Bernanke's implementation of "QE2" has directly led to food inflation across the world. In many developing and poor countries (i.e. Egypt and elsewhere) food makes up a much larger percentage of an individual's income and is felt much more severely than in the U.S. That's my theory and I am sticking to it. What do you think?
But what are investors to do? The oil stocks I have been recommending for years are beginning to soar (again). Conoco Philips (COP), Marathon Oil (MRO), Exxon Mobil (XOM), Chevron (CVX), and Suncore (SU) have all made nice moves and are trading at or near yearly highs. COP announced excellent earnings this week and continues to refine (pun intended) its operations and assets. MRO is finally splitting up into two companies (basically upstream and downstream) and this has and will unlock value. Both these stocks have further room to run and are my favorites. Suncore jumped bigtime today (oil was up over $3/barrel) as a friendly Canadian oil supplier suddenly seems like a smart investment. Chevron announced excellent earnings today and is a strong buy under $90. Exxon's earnings will be coming out Monday but it has already had a great run from the upper $50's. Petrobras (Pbr) has lagged and has been a big disappointment, so I apologize for that recommendation. That said, if you still have it - don't sell it! So, speaking of printing money ... these oil companies will be doing exactly that! However, when the music stops (i.e. "QE2") somewhere around June, hold onto your knickers.
Gold and silver have sold off recently, but bounced back today even as the U.S. dollar strengthened. No doubt the Egyptian unrest played a big role in this action. I continue to like gold and silver, and will never suggest selling unless I see the U.S. adopt natural gas transportation to reduce the foreign oil imports that are at the root of U.S. economic decline.
RESIDENTIAL HOME UNIT OVERVIEW PROPOSAL
There are 3 major benefits and strong selling points for our Residential Electrical Units.
1. Elimination of the monthly electrical bill. Owners of the unit will generate there own completely emission free electricity for on grid or off grid operation!
2. The unit will produce an incredible "excess" of electricity independent of the power grid and can be installed inside or outside of homes with zero noise polution.
3. The option to sell the "net generated electricity" to the utility companies in those 27 states which have already passed different FIT (Feed In Tariff) plans.
The first two benefits alone will not only relieve millions from the financial burden imposed by high electricity rates but more important for many, provide priceless safety and comfort for families during electrical power failures. These two benefits would place the electrical unit in high demand resulting in high volume sales nationally and ultimately worldwide. This is true even if (the 3rd benefit didn't exists) there was no purchase agreement with the utility company to purchase the "excess net-generated electricity" the electrical unit produces.
The third benefit, selling the net generated electricity produced by the electrical unit to the utility company for many entrepreneurs nationwide, will be more important than the first 2 because it provides an investment option for earning a substantial annual income and could dramatically stimulate continuous growth of various industries. Imagine if your excess electricity could cover a portion of your mortgage payment.
It has been a long road to get to this point on many fronts. The patent hold up was just one issue we had to deal with, but progress continued regardless of these obstacles. Sadly, we had great hope that the federal FIT would be implemented, yet it has not. The Obama administration chose to waste billions of dollars on solar energy and ethanol industry which has been proven over and over again to be a waste of money. Seeing the Solyndra collapse is the perfect example of wasted and lost money.
Our agent program is in the process of being formulated and will be announced as soon as production starts with several different technologies our group has been working on. We will be introducing two basic units, each consisting of a different technology, but both will address the residential electric generator markets first. A commercial unit will follow as out development funding increases after manufacturing licensing and training starts.
What is net metering? (The Basics)
Net metering is a regulatory policy that allows people to sell electricity back to the grid from their own renewable energy facilities. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 pushed utilities to adopt net metering as a policy but enforcement and program design has fallen mostly to the patchwork of state utility regulators.
Net metering is a special metering and billing agreement between utilities and their customers, which facilitates the connection of small, renewable energy-generating systems to the power grid. These programs encourage the purchase and installation small-scale renewable energy systems (such as our new pending residential electrical unit) for home and small business owners, ensure that customers always have a reliable source of energy from the grid during times when their renewable generators are not producing energy, and provide substantial benefits to the electric power-generating system, the
economy, and the environment.
Net-Metering & Feed-in Tariffs Models & Interconnection Polices vary state by state. States can, and many have adopted there own net metering and feed in tariffs policies.
How does net metering work? In selling electricity back to the grid, one method involves simply rolling the existing power meter backwards as excess energy is pushed back onto the grid. Another method involves installing a separate meter to measure just outgoing energy.
When a net metering customer’s renewable generator is producing more power than is being consumed, the electric meter runs backward generating credits. When a net metering customer uses more power than is being produced, the meter runs forward normally. Net metering customers are charged only for the “net” power that they consume from the electricity service provider that has accumulated over a designated period or, if their renewable energy-generating systems make more electricity than is consumed, they may be credited or paid for the excess electricity contributed to the grid over that same period.
These 2 guides are valuable resources. Everyone should download these free guides and use them to educate themselves and use them as a desk top references. Freeing The Grid is a free 112 page Guide produced by the
Network For New Energy Sources. . Connecting To The Grid is a free guide produced by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council's (IREC)
Articles on Net Metering Current Laws
Panel of state lawmakers debates net metering expansion
California Set To Raise Solar Net Metering Cap - Renewable Energy ...
Net-Metering Advocates Push for Support
What is a Feed-in Tariffs
A feed-in tariff is an energy supply policy that is currently growing in popularity throughout the United States. A number of states have recently begun implementing FITs and a few utilities have launched utility-specific FIT policies to help meet their renewable portfolio standards (RPS).
Feed in tariffs offers a guarantee of payments to renewable energy developers for the electricity they produce. Payments can be comprised of moneytary compensation alone or of electricity bundled with renewable energy certificates.
FIT policies can be understood as an advanced form of production-based incentive, where a payment is awarded for the actual electricity produced ($/kWh). PBIs are distinguished from capacity-based incentives like rebates, where a payment is awarded on the basis of how much capacity is installed ($/watt). . These payments are generally awarded as long-term contracts set over a period of 15-20 years on average.
As an advanced form of PBI, FIT payments can be determined in three ways:
1) based on the actual levelized cost of RE generation. This is the most common choice for FIT policies around the world because it awards a payment level sufficient to ensure the profitability of RE investments;
2) based on the utility’s avoided costs, either in real time, according to a locational marginal pricing formula, or based on utility projections of long-run fossil fuel prices, as under the Public Utilities Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA); or another example;
3) offered as a fixed-price incentive that is established arbitrarily and without regard to avoided costs or to levelized RE project costs.
FIT Policies Currently Enacted in the United States FIT policies are being experimented with in the United States, though at a smaller scale and less comprehensively than in a number of European countries. To date, several utilities in California, Florida, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, and now
Wisconsin have implemented different variations of FIT policies.
Fla. utility adopts new tariff. When the utility company in Gainesville, Fla., decided last fall to adopt a feed-in tariff, it picked a rate that would generate a 5 percent rate of return annually for home and business owners who install solar or approved renwable energy alternatives.
The program, which started March 1, pays roof-mounted system owners 32 cents per kilowatt-hour generated, guaranteed for the next 20 years. By comparison, those feeding power into the grid previously earned 12.5 cents per kilowatt-hour through a net metering program. Used by several states, net metering gives home and businesses that generate power credits on their electric bills, which offset energy usage.
That feed-in tariff rate makes Gainesville's program the first in North America to generate a profit for those selling their power to the utility.
In California, a feed-in tariff program offers a rate that varies depending on the time of day power is generated. It ranges from a low of 8 cents per kilowatt-hour during off-peak times to a high of 31 cents during peak demand hours. But overall, it averages out to a level that makes it not enough to really spur demand.
Articles on Feed in Tariffs & Current News
Wisconsin First in Midwest to Introduce Feed-in Tariff Bill in 2010
States Can Create Renewable Energy Feed-in Tariffs
Vermont feed-in tariffs become law
US lawmakers outline plan for feed-in tariff bill 2010
Feed-in tariffs could transform U.S. renewable energy market
Hawaii Feed-in Tariff Framework Set by PUC
Florida Utility Kicks Off Solar Feed-in Tariff, a First for the U.S.
Indiana Legislator Introduces Feed-in Tariff Bill
Policy Corner: Feed-in Tariffs Offer Farmers Clean Energy Revenue
Feed-in Tariff Systems Take Hold in North America
The information in this up date is presented in keeping with the assurance made to all Agents/Trainers in the our Group, that they will receive on going quality support. We do understand the frustration created by the limited information being released on the pending residential electrical unit, however, due to the uniqueness of the technology and the potential seismic influence it will have on several industries in the short term such as on the automobile and aviation industry, we believe it would be in the best interest of everyone involved that we wait until we have completed our final trial of the electrical unit and is geared up to begin production and distribution before any formal
public announcement is made!
At this time I feel that it is important that I stop to reiterate a point that has been made several times in previous updates! This website is presented primarily as a public awareness campaign designed to create awareness of
the incredible features & benefits of this soon to be released new technology and it's associated business opportunity to all users of electricity and home business opportunity seekers.
We Do Not Need And Are Not Attempting To Raise
Investment Capitol Through The Acquisition of Agent/Trainer Fees. The Only Reason The Group is Accepting Applications For Independent Agent/Trainers Distributorships At This Time Is At The Request Of Its Members. Here's
what I suggest to those Group Members who are considering signing-up but are skeptical! Wait! Wait until after the completion of the final trial period and production and distribution begins.
Many Group Members are waiting. However, many others are signing-up now with the objective of being the first or one of the first distributors in there community or state. If You Wait until production begin, You Will Still Be Getting In Early And Will Be In Great Position! The fees will at this point dramatically increase but you will be given an advance notice before the Agent/Trainer price increase is announced at the end of the month! It is your choice which option you choose at this time.
We are extremely excited about the potential of our electrical unit. We are absolutely sure it will be received as the ultimate renewable energy source when compared to other sources.
We are still waiting on congress to advance positive Net Metering and Feed In Tariff legislation. While we have however, seen some progress on energy policies, it seems that this progress has been dramatically slowed by attempts to pass the health care legislation. What we hope for is the defeat of the health care bill and attention shifted to the energy bill which will include many benefits, from production incentives, to customer incentives, energy rebates, tax rebates and many other polices designed to put people back to work, and ultimately eliminate our dependence on foreign oil!
We hope that feed in tariff legislation will be passed very soon which will make ownership of renewable energy distribution systems such as our new electrical unit very profitable "before" our unit is publicly announced. With the expected allocated "billions" going into the renewable energy industry, coinciding with the release of our new patented emission free electrical
unit which is designed for homes and small businesses, timing would be perfect! For those who have had storm related power outages for up to a week, these markets will surely explode once announced.
Over 27 individual states have already moved forward with their own versions of FIT, so just like with Net Metering, the feds are getting a late start. However, once the health bill is defeated, we expect that the current administration will recognize the need to quickly move forward with the energy bill and make positive advancements with Feed in Tariffs and Net Metering legislation which would make investing in renewable energy generating systems profitable. To do so would provide true stimulus to our economy.
by Mike Adams, NaturalNews Editor
The following article was originally published on NaturalNews.com. It details how cold fusion was already not just proven, but was gaining acceptance - so much so that the U.S. Navy sponsored research was even reporting “data supporting the reality of cold fusion.” - Editor
Thee world owes Fleischmann and Pons a huge apology: The cold fusion technology they announced in 1989 — which was blasted by arrogant hot fusion scientists as a fraud — has been proven true once again by U.S. Navy Researchers. In papers presented at this year’s American Chemical Society meeting, scientist Pamela Mosier-Boss presented data supporting the reality of cold fusion, declaring the report, “the first scientific report of highly energetic neutrons from low-energy nuclear reactions.”
Technically, it’s not the first report at all, however. It might be the five-hundredth report, given how many people have been working on cold fusion since 1989 in laboratories across the world. Following the politically-motivated assassination of cold fusion credibility in 1989, the cold fusion movement went underground, renaming itself to LENR (Low Energy Nuclear Reactions). As LENR, cold fusion has been proven true in literally thousands of experiments conducted over the past two decades.
I first went public with the true story about the conspiracy against cold fusion in 1998. It described this classic conspiracy against a new technology, schemed up by desperate defenders of old technology — hot fusion researchers who, after hundreds of billions of dollars in research money, have yet to produce a single sustainable hot fusion reaction that produces more energy than it consumes. The arrogant hot fusion researchers have the same snooty attitude as cancer researchers: “Just give us another billion dollars,” they say, “and we’ll find a cure!”
It’s been the same story for nearly three decades now, and hot fusion still does not work. A working cold fusion unit, however, can be built on a kitchen countertop for less than $2,000, and it does not require a doctorate in physics to pull it off, either. It is precisely this simplicity that offends the arrogant hot fusion pushers who act much like medical doctors in the vicious defense of their territory.
Cold fusion isn’t some magical free energy machine. It produces excess heat, but slowly. So don’t go thinking this is some kind of Mr. Fusion device that you can feed some banana peels and expect to get clean electricity out the other end.
Rather, cold fusion converts mass to heat energy, slowly losing a bit of mass through very low-energy nuclear reactions (hence the LENR name) that generate excess heat. In practical terms, cold fusion produces hot water.
And why is hot water useful? Because with hot water, you can produce steam. Steam turns turbines that generate electricity. This is how coal power plants work, too, except they’re burning coal to heat water instead of using cold fusion. Conventional nuke plants work the same way, too, using much higher-energy nuclear reactions to heat vast amounts of water that drive electricity-generating turbines.
So heating water with cold fusion is a big deal. If the technology can be scaled up and applied properly, it could spell an end to the era of dirty coal power plants.
And that, friends, could mean a very big deal for reducing CO2 emissions and avoiding a worsening of global warming. It will even help global warming skeptics, too, because even if you don’t believe global warming is real, the climate still changes on you. Mother Nature can’t be debated. It just reacts.
Whether you recognize the reality of global warming or not, cold fusion technology could reduce air pollution due to coal power plant emissions. Coal power plants are the No. 1 source of mercury pollution on our planet, in case you didn’t know. That’s because burning coal spews mercury into the air, which then contaminates oceans and land masses, contaminating the world with mercury.
(Perhaps there are mercury skeptics who do not believe coal power plants spew mercury at all, or that mercury is safe for human consumption. The mercury skeptics are probably dentists, come to think of it…)
Cold fusion, by the way, does not produce radioactive waste. So it’s not like a world full of cold fusion power plants would create yet another radioactive waste problem. It might cause a shortage of palladium, though, which is one of the metals typically used in cold fusion devices.
Some of the more astute readers of this website will probably figure out that investing in palladium futures ahead of any widespread production of cold fusion devices would no doubt be extremely profitable. But that kind of product roll out is likely years away, at best.
And that’s assuming that this latest round of cold fusion announcements won’t get clobbered yet again by the hot fusion conspirators. I’m half expecting an updated news announcement in a day or two, with a headline like, “U.S. Navy Retracts Cold Fusion Announcement, Scientists Accused of Fraud” or some such nonsense. If you see such a headline, remember what you’re reading here, and you’ll know it’s all been manipulated to erase the reality of cold fusion from the sphere of public knowledge.
Cold fusion, after all, could revolutionize the energy industry and spell doom for coal and natural gas. I know a bunch of executives in Wyoming who are shaking in their (insulated) boots right now at the thought of cold fusion sidelining natural gas.
Below, you’ll find selected quotes from noted authors on the subject of Cold Fusion. Feel free to quote these in your own work provided you give proper credit to both the original author quoted here and this NaturalNews page.
Nowhere are the resistance to and promise of a new energy technology more dramatically revealed than those of the case of cold fusion. This well-researched approach has the potential of reversing much of the pollution while turning the interests of the energy monopolies upside down. Unfortunately, even the environmentalists haven’t yet given new energy alternatives a fair look. The cold fusion Revolution: The unfolding cold fusion saga has provided us with an illustrious thirteen year history that would make the suppression of Tesla seem like a school exercise.
- Reinheriting the Earth: Awakening to Sustainable Solutions and Greater Truths by Brian O’Leary
The coup de grace was delivered to cold fusion when the US House committee formed to examine the claims for cold fusion came down on the side of the skeptics. ‘Evidence for the discovery of a new nuclear process termed cold fusion is not persuasive,’ said its report. ‘No special programmes to establish cold fusion research centers or to support new efforts to find cold fusion are justified.’
- Alternative Science: Challenging the Myths of the Scientific Establishment by Richard Milton
Cold fusion The fusion of hydrogen atoms into helium at room temperature. In 1989 two scientists announced that they had produced cold fusion in their laboratory, an achievement that if true would have meant a virtually unlimited cheap energy supply for humanity. When other scientists were unable to reproduce their results, the scientific community concluded that the original experiment had been flawed.
- The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know by E. D. Hirsch, Joseph F. Kett, James Trefil
Thus within two months of its original announcement, cold fusion had been dealt a fatal blow by two of the world’s most prestigious nuclear research centres, each receiving millions of pounds a year to fund atomic research. The measure of MIT’s success in killing off cold fusion is that still today, the US Department of Energy refuses to fund any research into it while the US Patent Office relies on the MIT report to refuse any patents based on or relating to cold fusion processes even though hundreds have been submitted.
- Alternative Science: Challenging the Myths of the Scientific Establishment by Richard Milton
Patent Office of any application mentioning cold fusion; 3) Suppression of research on the phenomenon in government laboratories; 4) Citation of cold fusion as “pathological science” or “fraud” in numerous books and articles critical of cold fusion in general, and of Fleischmann and Pons in particular.” One of the DOE panel members, Prof. Steven Koonin of Caltech (and now Provost there), said, “My conclusion is that the experiments are just wrong and that we are suffering from the incompetence and delusion of Doctors Pons and Fleischmann…
- Reinheriting the Earth: Awakening to Sustainable Solutions and Greater Truths by Brian O’Leary
Six months after cold fusion was announced, the American Department of Energy denounced it. In Japan, the people who are considered authorities blindly emulated the attitude of the Americans, as they invariably do, and they too pontificated against cold fusion. Perhaps it was inevitable that most people would assume the claims are cock and bull nonsense. In keeping with the tide of the times, countless books and articles have been published attacking cold fusion. The very act of researching cold fusion has become scandalous.
- Alternative Science: Challenging the Myths of the Scientific Establishment by Richard Milton
Equally illuminating were the remarks of Professor John Huizenga, who was co-chairman of the US Department of Energy’s panel on cold fusion and who came down against the reality of the process. In a recent book on the subject, Professor Huizenga observed that ‘The world’s scientific institutions have probably now squandered between $50 and $100 million on an idea that was absurd to begin with.’ The question is, what were his principal reasons for rejecting cold fusion.
- Alternative Science: Challenging the Myths of the Scientific Establishment by Richard Milton
This was perhaps the high-water mark of cold fusion. Scores of organisations over the world were actively working to replicate cold fusion in their laboratories, and although many reported difficulties a decent number reported success. And by the end of April, Fleischmann and Pons were standing before the US House Science, Space and Technology committee asking for a cool $25 million to fund a centre for cold fusion research at Utah University. Then things began to go wrong.
- Alternative Science: Challenging the Myths of the Scientific Establishment by Richard Milton
Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite NaturalNews.com with clickable link.
Low-energy nuclear reactions could potentially provide 21st Century society a limitless and environmentally-clean energy source for generating electricity, researchers say. The report, which injects new life into this controversial field, will be presented here today at the American Chemical Society’s 237th National Meeting. It is among 30 papers on the topic that will be presented during a four-day symposium, “New Energy Technology,” March 22-25, in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of the first description of cold fusion.
“Our finding is very significant,” says study co-author and analytical chemist Pamela Mosier-Boss, Ph.D., of the U.S. Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) in San Diego, Calif. “To our knowledge, this is the first scientific report of the production of highly energetic neutrons from an LENR device.”
The first report on “cold fusion,” presented in 1989 by Martin Fleishmann and Stanley Pons, was a global scientific sensation. Fusion is the energy source of the sun and the stars. Scientists had been striving for years to tap that power on Earth to produce electricity from an abundant fuel called deuterium that can be extracted from seawater. Everyone thought that it would require a sophisticated new genre of nuclear reactors able to withstand temperatures of tens of millions of degrees Fahrenheit.
Pons and Fleishmann, however, claimed achieving nuclear fusion at comparatively “cold” room temperatures — in a simple tabletop laboratory device termed an electrolytic cell.
But other scientists could not reproduce their results [or so the mainsteram media was told - Ed.], and the whole field of research declined. A stalwart cadre of scientists persisted, however, seeking solid evidence that nuclear reactions can occur at low temperatures. One of their problems involved extreme difficulty in using conventional electronic instruments to detect the small number of neutrons produced in the process, researchers say.
In the new study, Mosier-Boss and colleagues inserted an electrode composed of nickel or gold wire into a solution of palladium chloride mixed with deuterium or “heavy water” in a process called co-deposition. A single atom of deuterium contains one neutron and one proton in its nucleus.
Researchers passed electric current through the solution, causing a reaction within seconds. The scientists then used a special plastic, CR-39, to capture and track any high-energy particles that may have been emitted during reactions, including any neutrons emitted during the fusion of deuterium atoms.
At the end of the experiment, they examined the plastic with a microscope and discovered patterns of “triple tracks,” tiny-clusters of three adjacent pits that appear to split apart from a single point. The researchers say that the track marks were made by subatomic particles released when neutrons smashed into the plastic. Importantly, Mosier-Boss and colleagues believe that the neutrons originated in nuclear reactions, perhaps from the combining or fusing deuterium nuclei.
“People have always asked ‘Where’s the neutrons?’” Mosier-Boss says. “If you have fusion going on, then you have to have neutrons. We now have evidence that there are neutrons present in these LENR reactions.”
They cited other evidence for nuclear reactions including X-rays, tritium (another form of hydrogen), and excess heat. Meanwhile, Mosier-Boss and colleagues are continuing to explore the phenomenon to get a better understanding of exactly how LENR works, which is key to being able to control it for practical purposes.
Mosier-Boss points out that the field currently gets very little funding and, despite its promise, researchers can’t predict when, or if, LENR may emerge from the lab with practical applications. The U.S. Department of the Navy and JWK International Corporation in Annandale, Va., funded the study.
Other highlights in the symposium include:
Overview, update on LENR by editor of New Energy Times – Steve Krivit, editor of New Energy Times and author of “The Rebirth of Cold Fusion,” will present an overview of the field of low energy nuclear reactions, formerly known as “cold fusion.” A leading authority on the topic, Krivit will discuss the strengths, weaknesses, and implications of this controversial subject, including its brief history. (ENVR 002, Sunday, March 22, 8:55 a.m. Hilton, Alpine Ballroom West, during the symposium, “New Energy Technology)
Excess heat, gamma radiation production from an unconventional LENR device —Tadahiko Mizuno, Ph.D., of Hokkaido University in Japan, has reported the production of excess heat generation and gamma ray emissions from an unconventional LENR device that uses phenanthrene, a type of hydrocarbon, as a reactant. He is the author of the book “Nuclear Transmutation: The Reality of Cold Fusion.” (ENVR 049, Monday, March 23, 3:35 p.m., Hilton, Alpine Ballroom West, during the symposium, “New Energy Technology.”)
New evidence supporting production and control of low energy nuclear reactions — Antonella De Ninno, Ph.D., a scientist with New Technologies Energy and Environment in Italy, will describe evidence supporting the existence of low energy nuclear reactions. She conducted lab experiments demonstrating the simultaneous production of both excess heat and helium gas, tell-tale evidence supporting the nuclear nature of LENR. She also shows that scientists can control the phenomenon. (ENVR 064, Tuesday, March 24, 10:10 a.m., Hilton, Alpine Ballroom West, during the symposium, “New Energy Technology)
Wed, 10 Dec 2008 20:57 UTC
Haiko Lietz 21.10.2008
If we can trust in the BlackLight Power
A look at the
In 2006 the retired head of energy banking at Morgan Stanley had
Hydrino Theory Scares Off Scientists
Mills and co-workers have published
As is known a hydrogen atom consists of a proton in its core and an electron. According to quantum mechanics in the hydrogen ground state the electron is closest to the core. It cannot get closer. When energy is added to the atom the electron jumps to a higher, precisely calculable energy level. When it falls back to a lower level the stored energy is released again in the form of light. Now Mills claims that there are 137 energy states below the ground state. If an electron fell to one of those levels accordingly more energy was released. Hydrogen atoms below ground state are called "hydrinos." Because those are stable energy could effectively and permanently be extracted from hydrogen. If true, hydrogen not only was an energy carrier, but also an energy source.
In the so-called
The "breakthrough" proclaimed in May is said to rest on the development of a new cyclic catalytic process. The announcement of a 50k Watt prototype is remarkable because the power generation in preceding
Multiple Experimental Confirmations
Meanwhile scientists at Rowan University in New Jersey have scrutinized and confirmed the 50k Watt claim. To generate the according amount of heat (1 million Joule) 1.5kg of a catalytic substance were used. "These results are unexpected given conventional chemistry and may represent a validation the BLP scientists have indeed uncovered a novel technology for producing energy from the hydrogen atom," a recently published interim
Rowan scientists had already checked BlackLight claims in 2002 in a NASA sponsored study and
To gain more certainty in 2005 Greenpeace and other environmental NGOs had charged researchers at the University of North Carolina to independently assess the claims. Chemist Richard Maas and physicist Randy Booker got five days unfettered access to the BlackLight facility and conducted their own measurements. "We went in with a healthy amount of scepticism," Mass
Critics object that such confirmations cannot be labelled "independent" because BlackLight Power was either in a consultant role or their laboratory had been used. Both has been avoided by German physics professor Johannes Conrads. The plasma researcher had a private interest in this work but the employer he had worked for for 30 years, the Jülich Research Center, feared repercussions if he engaged in experiments. He found an open ear at Bochum Ruhr University provided that no "crazy theories" were involved. But Mills' plasma lamp burned. "I very well remember the sunburn I had the next day," says Thomas Wrubel who was involved in the experiment. The BlackLight Power reaction produces intense ultraviolet light. "Such an extreme ultraviolet emission is not expected," Gerrit Kroesen from the Technical University of Eindhoven comments who is currently engaged in studying the BlackLight Process himself. "You have to make very difficult mental bends to explain it."
Conrads and Wrubel tried to get to the bottom of the mysterious light emission using well-founded and established methods, even modifying the experiment. For one year they worked on the experiment on and off. But they never found an explanation for the plasma because "the minimally required energy was by all the rules not available. We either have a new chemical reaction we could not nail down or it is something else strange," Wrubel looks back wondering. For the 2003
One Pro for Each Contra
Hans-Joachim Kunze, the now retired director of the institute in Bochum, could not lay Mills' claims to rest until this day. "Standards that we have in physics for 100 years simply don't matter for Mills." Last year he wrote a short
Also among theoreticians a stimulated debate has flared up. The ESA scientist Andreas Rathke
Still many are kept from taking BlackLight Power's claims serious for theoretical reasons. But should the US company really have developed a technology that eventually made ordinary water a fuel, theory would certainly become secondary.
Many eyes now rest on Dutch physics professor Kroesen. He has just started "totally independent" experiments and does not want to publish anything that is not absolutely certain. "It's important that we do our job as scientists in a careful and sincere way. This is expected from us anytime, but with this topic it is even more necessary." But progress is slow, without a dedicated budget, working with students and equipment that has been borrowed here and there. "Some colleagues believe this is all bull. But some like it, even though they may not acknowledge this in public," Kroesen says. Kunze welcomes Kroesen's efforts. "He's a good physicist. What he finds will be correct."
The device fires an intense pulse of electricity – half a million amps and 100,000 volts. It has just completed preliminary testing at Sandia National Laboratories' "Z Machine" facility in New Mexico, US. Researchers hope the component could help narrow the gap between the fusion technique being used there and the one that currently leads the field. Some experts are sceptical about its chances, however.
Nuclear fusion harnesses the process that powers stars, generating power by binding atomic nuclear together. Unlike nuclear fission, which drives existing nuclear power stations, it offers hope of producing nuclear energy cleanly.
Sandia is developing a method called inertial confinement, to compress and heat small pellets of hydrogen isotopes. The process forces the isotopes to fuse together, producing helium and releasing energy.
Although inertial confinement is popular in the US, an alternative technique, known magnetic confinement, has shown greater practical promise. This involves pushinghydrogen atoms together using magnetic fields and it is the basis for an experimental fusion reactor called ITER, an international project. Following several years of intense negotiations, ITER will be built in Caderache, France, in 2008.
Inertial confinement is less efficient partly because the fusion produced is relatively short-lived. Each time the reaction fizzles out, researchers have to wait hours while devices called Marx generators recharge. These components kick-start a fusion reaction and function like gigantic spark plugs.
But a new device called a linear transformer driver (LTD) could drive this kind of fusion for much longer. By firing every 10 seconds, engineers hope to boost fusion power output. Just a few of the components have been tested so far.
"This is the most significant advance in primary power generation in many decades," says Keith Matzen, director of Sandia's Pulsed Power Centre. Test firings show LTDs to be 50% more efficient than the method currently used at the Z Machine.
The LTDs were developed by researchers at the Institute of High Current Electronics in Tomsk, Russia, in collaboration with Sandia colleagues. Each "spark plug" is about the size of a shoebox and contains a switch coupled to several large capacitors. A circular ring of 20 such units, wired in parallel, can produce half a million amps and one hundred thousand volts. Linking several rings together increases the final voltage produced. Researchers estimate that about 60 rings should be enough to power a fusion reactor.
LTDs achieve better performance partly because they are simpler than Marx generators, which need extensive wiring and hundreds of thousands of gallons of insulating water and oil. Neither do LTDs generate the magnetic fields that slow the passage of current and reduce performance.
"Fusion is an important future energy source, and this does seem to be a significant breakthrough in its field," says Duarte Borba, who works on the world's largest fusion reactor, the Joint European Torus in Culham, UK.
However, he adds that the magnetic confinement technique, which is used in JET and is the basis for ITER, is more advanced. "The basic technological pieces have already been built and are well tested – we just need to integrate them," he explains. "Simulations [of a finished reactor] may suggest big improvements from a new technique but until they are tried you can't be sure."
Results on LTD development will be presented at the IEEE International Pulsed Power and Symposium on Fusion Engineering conferences in Albuquerque in June 2007.
BURNABY, B.C. -Tucked away in the back corner of an old mattress warehouse in this Vancouver suburb sits a silver sphere not much larger than a human head. Like some mad inventor's futuristic Chia pet, it sprouts wires that lead to banks of capacitors, batteries capable of delivering their charge at lightning speed.
It could easily pass for a school science project from some overly keen teen -- complete with its very own home-made flourishes, like a particle detector hidden inside a stovepipe and held together with black electrical tape.
But if this is a science project -- and in many ways that is what it is for Michel Laberge, the 40-something PhD who has spent five years building it -- it is among the most ambitious. This modest assemblage of wires and dreams is in fact a home-brew nuclear-fusion reactor -- if reactor is the right word to describe a device that has achieved a micro-second's worth of miniscule energy output just seven times in the past few years.
But for Mr. Laberge, a slightly dishevelled Quebecer who built his fusion device in an old gas station on an island near Vancouver, it is the prototype for something enormous -- something that, in his words, "will actually save the planet."
He admits it is a lofty goal. "This is an outrageously ambitious project," he says. "Thousands of physicists have spent billions every year for the last 40 years [trying in vain to produce fusion] and I'm saying I'm going to take those guys and do it."
Mr. Laberge is hardly alone in the corner of the country that bred the hydrogen fuel cell more than two decades ago. Ballard Power Systems Inc. pioneered that technology, which promised cars that dripped nothing but water from their tailpipes, not far from where Mr. Laberge and his three-man company, General Fusion, are working today.
Last week, Ballard announced that it had sold off its automotive fuel-cell division and admitted that the hydrogen-powered car remains little more than a distant dream. Ballard will now focus on the decidedly less glamorous work of making fuel cells for forklifts, backup power and cogeneration units that produce power and heat for homes.
But if Ballard has stumbled, the tech-friendly environment its early successes fostered in B.C. is flourishing, with dozens of small to medium-sized companies working on everything from fuel-cell-powered cell phones to revolutionary new kinds of batteries.
Few, however, embody the bold promise of new technology as well as Mr. Laberge, who has drawn around him some of the same people who first saw Ballard's promise. One of them is Michael Brown, now executive director of Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital, Canada's largest clean-energy venture-capital fund.
"If this form of fusion works, this is worth not millions but more than billions," Mr. Brown said. "I used to say that you can have a one-comma opportunity, a two-comma opportunity or a three-comma opportunity. This may be a four-comma opportunity. You write out a number with zeroes and four commas, that's a big number."
The reason: If fusion works, it will use as an energy supply a material -- deuterium -- that is so prevalent it could power all of Earth's needs for millions of years. And it will do it cheaper than coal power, completely without greenhouse gases and without risk of nuclear meltdown. (A coal plant produces more radiation than a fusion plant would.)
If it were achieved, fusion could almost instantly end the most vexatious issues confronting society today: climate change and peak oil.
There is no dispute that the "if " needs to be bolded, capitalized and triple underlined, given that vast sums of money and the world's brightest scientific minds have so far been unable to create a fusion reaction that produces more energy than it sucks up. Most have been abysmal failures.
That those examples are exceedingly rare has not tempered Mr. Laberge's ambitions, despite his unlikely path into his current field. As a student, he had studied laser physics before landing a job at Creo Inc., the B.C. maker of printing technology that was bought out by Eastman Kodak Co. in 2005.
Two weeks before his 40th birthday, however, he looked at his life's work and gulped.
"I said, 'OK, what am I doing here? I'm making printing so cheap that I can fill your mailbox with junk mail. This is what my hard work produces here -- cheap junkmail'," he said.
Thinking back to his PhD studies, which had brought him into contact with fusion, he quickly latched onto that idea.
"I knew that the energy situation of the planet is a complete disaster --and we're going straight for total disaster -- so we need some solution to that," he said. "I decided that fusion is the solution so I say, 'OK, I'm quitting Creo and I'm going to do fusion my-self. '"
Begging and borrowing from friends and family, he managed to cobble together enough cash to begin his work.
Where nuclear fission produces electricity by splitting apart atoms -- a process that can release enough energy to level cities -- fusion is exactly the opposite. It works to join atoms together, a process that also produces enormous energy.
But it is exceedingly difficult to achieve because it involves melding together the protons of two atoms that naturally repel. The usual way to do it is to create a shockwave in a sphere that will press together the atoms in the centre with extraordinary pressure and temperatures of 100-million degrees Celsius.
Sustaining those conditions has proven impossible in the nearly eight decades since fusion was first proposed as a theory. The world record is the production of 16 megawatts of power for less than a second, and the most intensive global effort to beat that mark is a hugely expensive one. ITER, a recently formed international research-and-development project whose partners include the European Union, Japan, China, India and the United States, plans to build a fusion reactor in France with a budget of ¤10-billion, a construction time of 10 years and no ambitions to produce marketable electricity.
Mr. Laberge believes he and his team can build a functioning prototype fusion unit for $50-million in half a decade, and produce commercial electricity with a $500-million reactor. General Fusion has already raised $1.4-million this year, and has pencilled-in commitments for another $5-million to $6-million as part of a financing campaign.
He is not crazy. Although he has not described his successes or methods in refereed publications -- "basically because I really don't like writing papers," he says -- some of Canada's leading fusion physicists say there is no reason to doubt he has achieved fusion.
They do, however, question whether he can succeed.
"What he has done is not enough because everybody can get fusion. It doesn't take anything," said Emilio Panarella, a long-time fusion scientist with the federal government who now runs Ottawa-based Fusion Reactor Technology Inc., and has his own backyard project to solve the fusion puzzle.
"But the objective is so important that any enthusiastic person that joins this race is to be applauded, not reprimanded."
Mr. Laberge himself is strikingly up-front about his own somewhat modest successes. In well over 30 tries, he has created fusion in only seven, and each produced an infinitesimal amount of energy.
Not only that, it now takes him a week between attempts. For fusion power to work, he needs to be able to make an attempt once a second. He figures that a bigger machine that produces compression with steam-powered pistons, instead of the bits of exploding foil he now uses, will solve those issues.
But for that to work, he will need to make steam-powered pistons act with space-age precision. For atoms to stick together, they need to be hit with a perfect compression wave that will come from all sides of the sphere at exactly the same time. It is akin to compressing a balloon without letting it get misshapen -- except Mr. Laberge has to synchronize the compression from 200 different pistons in one-millionth of a second.
Whether Mr. Laberge can pull it off remains a potentially show-stopping question that he hopes to answer in the next two years with a pared-down, $10-million prototype.
If he can, he will be about 60% of the way to creating fusion power. Still, there is no doubt that those investing in this gambit are rolling the dice, and Mr. Brown hopes to convince big oil and utility companies to invest as one strategy for his retrieving his money if the technology doesn't work.
"The chances are that we will lose our money," he admits. "But it's not one-in-a million odds. I think we're in the 20%-to-25% likelihood of getting through the first part, and if we do succeed, the prize is unbelievably big. So from a risk-reward perspective, this is a risk that's worth taking."
Some Discoveries That Are Really Cookin’
It always amazes me when garage inventors discover breakthroughs that should have been accessible to academics for decades. I wonder how they could have been missed.
My friend the professional inventor Jerry Smith has for many years made a very nice living doing exactly this. I attribute this phenomenon to a special kind of myopia: Academics tend to focus very narrowly, while independent inventors sometimes have the luxury of time to allow their minds to wander freely, synthesizing knowledge from diverse fields.
Now an expert in radio technology may have figured out how to use it to address two of humanity’s greatest challenges: cancer and the generation of energy.
The Los Angeles Times reports that John Kanzius made his breakthrough in response to a death sentence from leukemia. With just nine months to live, he used his expertise to build a kind of specialized microwave.
Essentially, it introduces nanoparticles of metal into living tissue. The tiny metal particles have a special affinity for cancer cells, and therein lies the trick.
As anyone who uses microwave ovens much knows, metal heats up in microwaves. Therefore, the nanoparticles literally burn the cancer cells to death.
It put his cancer into remission (doctors almost never call cancer “cured,” because microscopic particles may remain. Extreme remission happens when no cancer can any longer be found.)
Dr. David Geller, who is co-director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's liver cancer program, tested the machine. It has since been tested for four years at the MD Anderson Cancer Center. Researchers have, for example, been able to completely eliminate liver cancer in test rabbits.
Kanzius has filed a patent and is exploring commercialization. (Disclaimer: I have conceived a way to potentially augment his discovery, and am talking about it with one of the world’s experts in nanotechnology. We are exploring filing a derivative patent. Such a patent would work only with the original patent’s cooperation.)
It’s not really as radical an approach as it sounds. Before he died, my father underwent radiofrequency (RF) ablation to kill cancer in his kidney. Needles are inserted into tumors, and RF energy heats them up. However, healthy tissue can be damaged, and often not all the cancer is killed. It’s crude.
Comparing RF ablation to the Kanzius method is like compa ring a surgical knife of the 1800s to today’s lasers. The lasers can burn off single layers of cells; so can Kanzius.
Nobel laureate in chemistry Richard Smalley, who died in 2005, commented on the method as follows: "Nothing has the potential to help people, to help patients, more than this. You have to promise me to keep doing this work."
It has the potential advantage of killing cancers so small that they are undetectable with current methods. It might even find use as a preventive treatment, though this is speculation on my part. (My last girlfriend has an extremely high-risk profile for breast cancer, as do millions of women with her genetic condition. Physicians have seriously proposed that she undergo radical mastectomy as a preventive measure. Clearly, the Kanzius method offers a far more benign alternative.)
The researchers are currently focused on finding a method of binding nanoparticles with antibodies that will attach only to cancer cells. They believe it could lead to a shot to treat any kind of cancer. Clinical trials are three-four years away.
In 2007, a serendipitous discovery led to a whole other potential application. Out of curiosity, Kanzius heated saltwater in his generator. When he held a match next to the saltwater, it burned brighter than a match should. It was burning hydrogen liberated via RF stimulation from the saltwater.
Rustum Roy, a renowned Penn State University chemist, has called this the most remarkable discovery in water science in the last century.
(Second disclaimer: An entrepreneur I know is in discussions to license the energy use of this technology. If he does, there may be an investment opportunity for Emerging Capital Report readers. Stay tuned.)
It’s still unclear whether the energy input (via radio) is surpassed by the output (work from burning hydrogen). However, even assuming there’s no net energy gain, this may prove a far more efficient way of generating hydrogen than alternatives. (As I previously reported, careful analysis indicates that hydrogen cannot affordably be transported, because so much bleeds off.)
Generation of hydrogen at the point of use -- for instance, from saltwater carried in your vehicle -- may revive this as a possible alternative to fossil fuels. A key question is whether this is a more efficient way to store and transport energy than an electric battery.
The radio frequency (RF) energy would still have to be generated, but advanced systems could capture the energy of braking and use it to recharge batteries, which could then power the RF generator. This might not eliminate gasoline, but it could serve to power a superior hybrid vehicle of tomorrow. Such transitional technologies could help power the world until we deploy the truly advanced energy systems now on the drawing boards, which can completely replace fossil fuels.
To your profitable future,
Hydrogen as an everyday, environmentally friendly fuel source may be closer than we think, say Penn State researchers.
"This process produces 288 percent more energy in hydrogen than the electrical energy that is added to the process."
-- Bruce E. Logan, Kappe Professor of Environmental Engineering, Penn State
"The energy focus is currently on ethanol as a fuel, but economical ethanol from cellulose is 10 years down the road," says Bruce E. Logan, the Kappe professor of environmental engineering. "First you need to break cellulose down to sugars and then bacteria can convert them to ethanol."
Logan and Shaoan Cheng, research associate, have recently demonstrated a method based on microbial fuel cells to convert cellulose and other biodegradable organic materials directly into hydrogen.
The researchers used naturally occurring bacteria in a microbial electrolysis cell with acetic acid — the acid found in vinegar. Acetic acid also is the predominant acid produced by fermentation of glucose or cellulose. The anode was granulated graphite, the cathode was carbon with a platinum catalyst, and they used an off-the-shelf anion exchange membrane. The bacteria consume the acetic acid and release electrons and protons creating up to 0.3 volts. When more than 0.2 volts are added from an outside source, hydrogen gas bubbles up from the liquid.
"This process produces 288 percent more energy in hydrogen than the electrical energy that is added to the process," says Logan.
Water hydrolysis, a standard method for producing hydrogen, is only 50 to 70 percent efficient. Even if the microbial electrolysis cell process is set up to bleed off some of the hydrogen to produce the added energy boost needed to sustain hydrogen production, the process still creates 144 percent more available energy than the electrical energy used to produce it.
For those who think that a hydrogen economy is far in the future, Logan suggests that hydrogen produced from cellulose and other renewable organic materials could be blended with natural gas for use in natural gas vehicles.
"We drive a lot of vehicles on natural gas already. Natural gas is essentially methane," says Logan. "Methane burns fairly cleanly, but if we add hydrogen, it burns even more cleanly and works fine in existing natural gas combustion vehicles."
The range of efficiencies of hydrogen production based on electrical energy and energy in a variety of organic substances is between 63 and 82 percent. Both lactic acid and acetic acid achieve 82 percent, while unpretreated cellulose is 63 percent efficient. Glucose is 64 percent efficient.
Another potential use for microbial-electrolysis-cell produced hydrogen is in fertilizer manufacture. Currently fertilizer is produced in large factories and trucked to farms. With microbial electrolysis cells, very large farms or farm cooperatives could produce hydrogen from wood chips and then through a common process, use the nitrogen in the air to produce ammonia or nitric acid. Both of these are used directly as fertilizer or the ammonia could be used to make ammonium nitrate, sulfate or phosphate.
The researchers have filed for a patent on this work. Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. and the National Science Foundation supported this work.
A recent Science Friday broadcast on National Public Radio featured an interview with the researchers. You can listen to the show and learn more about the technology here.
Scientists are Finally Understanding Hot Fusion
Some scientists at the esteemed Max Planck Institute have just cracked one of the thorniest unsolved questions about electricity. It may have powerful applications.
New Scientist reports that ball lightning — the mysterious form of energy sometimes seen during thunderstorms — has been created in the lab.
The Max Planck Institute’s scientists have figured out how to use underwater electrical bursts to generate ball lightning. (Technically, they call it “luminous plasma clouds” — but if it looks like a duck and quacks like one…)
The creations last for about half a second and are eight inches in diameter. This makes their size comparable to the size of naturally occurring ball lightning, which has been reported by many observers, including scientists, for centuries.
Even such luminaries as Charlemagne, King Henry II and the renowned physicist Niels Bohr reported seeing it.
The laboratory-created version doesn’t last nearly as long as has often been reported. However, when people are startled or frightened, time often seems to pass more slowly. So it’s possible the observers were wrong about duration.
It’s also possible that the scientists have yet to understand the properties of these balls fully, and that optimization is possible. That frequently happens with scientific discoveries, especially as engineers become involved.
The scientists are hopeful that these plasma fields will deepen understanding of “hot” fusion reactions such as those inside stars. The intent is to develop an inexhaustible power source based on the fusion of deuterium atoms. Deuterium is a special form of hydrogen found in seawater.
The water tank contains two electrodes. One is in contact with the water, while the other is insulated from the water by a clay tube. The high voltage burst causes enormous currents to flow through the water momentarily. When the current enters the clay tube, it ionizes the water and a “burp” of plasma rises to the surface.Interestingly, more than one approach has proven successful in recent months. Earlier this year, Israeli scientists succeeded using microwaves. Specifically, they use a burst of 5,000 volts to vaporize water in a glass tank and the ball lightning is a byproduct.
The plasma balls display some interesting properties. They glow brightly yet are cold. This is reminiscent of neon lights, or fireflies (which use a chemical process to effect the same result).
An “ionic wind” is created in the vicinity of the plasma such that a sheet of paper placed above it is lifted — yet does not ignite.
Some have speculated that the ionic clouds are actually enabled by nanoparticles of dissolved materials, such as clay from the underwater apparatus. However, research indicates that it’s just ionized hydrogen and oxygen. In effect, a special kind of electrolysis effect is occurring.
So, what is the practical significance of all this? As yet, it’s unclear. “Hot” fusion has been the next great energy source for decades, and always seems to be 20 years away. I’m not holding my breath for that one, especially when alternatives (including so-called cold fusion) are stirring up so many interesting results.
Having said that, it may have more down-to-Earth significance. One of the challenges in generating a true “hydrogen” economy is the efficiency of converting water to hydrogen and oxygen. Specifically, it currently takes more energy input to split them than is recoverable by burning them.
That’s a big problem (although I am watching a California startup that may just have cracked the problem using an ingenious approach). A better understanding of these unique plasmas that dance around like living beings may hold the cluesto a better approach to generating hydrogen.
That would be huge.
To your profitable future,
RECENT NEWS ARTICLE FROM BMW
By Clifton B. Parker
|The governorn takes time to fill up at the campus’s new public hydrogen fueling station. (Debbie Aldridge/UC Davis)|
With a cloudy sky above him, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger promoted hydrogen-powered vehicles as the future's bright transportation alternative during a visit to campus Tuesday.
"Let's create some action," said Schwarzenegger, signing an executive order to launch the nation's first Hydrogen Highway Network while a crowd of about 300 people looked on at the Unitrans Yard on Garrod Drive off of La Rue Road. "This starts a new era for clean California transportation," he said.
The event marked his first gubernatorial visit to a UC campus. Schwarzennegger drove a hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle to the media gathering and refueled it at UC Davis' new hydrogen fueling station.
The university's new hydrogen fueling station is the first publicly accessible station on California's Hydrogen Highway, and the governor was the first member of the public to use it.
"This is the future of California and the future of our environmental protection," he said.
The search for cheaper, cleaner fuels gave impetus to Schwarzenegger's Hydrogen Highways initiative. California's Hydrogen Highways involves the building of hundreds of hydrogen refueling stations across the state, creating an infrastructure for what some believe will be the fuel of the future.
Chancellor Larry Vanderhoef greeted Schwarzenegger, noting, "We see ourselves at the university as having a special responsibility to undertake objective research in the public's interest. Today's launching of the California Hydrogen Highway is an important step in the exploration of possibilities for the future."
The UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies held the event in conjunction with the Governor's Office and the California Environmental Protection Agency.
The program consisted of a couple dozen hydrogen-powered vehicles on display with their manufacturers hosting exhibit booths. Dozens of media, local and national, were in attendance, cordoned off by moveable fences. A helicopter flew overhead toward the end of the governor's address.
"This is like a movie set, but it's better," said Schwarzenegger, adding that alternative fuels like hydrogen could help communities protect their environment and people from pollution. "Growth and protecting our natural beauty go hand in hand," he said.
and hydrogen-enriched natural gas for refueling natural gas transit buses. It is capable of refueling up to eight light-duty hydrogen vehicles per day, and currently supports two Toyota hybrid vehicles and a Unitrans bus.
In its research fleet, UC Davis has two hydrogen-powered Toyota SUVs (the most at any university campus, a distinction shared with its sister campus UC Irvine) and a new transit bus, the first in the nation in everyday service to be powered by a blend of hydrogen and natural gas.
The campus Hydrogen Pathways research progr
The governor vowed that the state government would "lead by example" and build support for hydrogen fuel. He promised to seek federal funding for research and implementation efforts, and said businesses would look more favorably upon California when it offers alternative fuel choices in the future.
The Institute of Transportation Studies is a research unit on campus that receives funding from the government, private industry and foundations. Faculty and student researchers there have studied issues such as the adoption of new technologies by consumers and data analysis of emissions.
With more than 40 faculty members, 15 research staff and 80 graduate students involved, the ITS researchers are based primarily in the campus's College of Engineering and College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
"None of us knows what the future of transportation will be. But we do know change is needed," said ITS-Davis director Daniel Sperling. "We should take wise first steps now to find the best path. Intelligent demonstrations, strong research and public education are imperative if California will continue to lead in efforts to clean our air and reduce greenhouse gases that are warming the planet."
To use the hydrogen fueling station, individuals and companies will have to sign an agreement with the university. The station offers pure hydrogen for refueling fuel-cell vehiclesam is supported by 16 industry partners. Its station already is attracting non-university users. Two Honda fuel-cell cars participating in a demonstration project of the city and county of San Francisco drove to the governor's event today from San Francisco and refueled here for their return trip.
General Atomics, San Diego, CA;
It has been concluded that production of hydrogen is well suited to the characteristics of fusion energy production, and could be a larger market for fusion energy than even electricity production. These studies have shown that electrolysis, high temperature electrolysis and thermo-chemical water-splitting all have the potential to be attractive techniques for the production of hydrogen.
The United States has embarked on a serious effort to transform our transportation economy from one that is largely petroleum-based to one based on hydrogen. This has come to be known as the Hydrogen Economy. If successful, this transition will result in significant improvements in energy efficiency and environmental quality. A hydrogen economy can be based on domestic energy resources and would make possible a high degree of energy security.
Hydrogen is an energy carrier, not an energy source. While hydrogen is the most plentiful element on earth, virtually all of it is chemically bound. Energy must be invested to separate hydrogen from the water, hydrocarbons or carbohydrates in which it is bound. The most straightforward, cleanest and sustainable pathway to hydrogen is decomposition of water. This can be accomplished by electrolysis using electricity, by high temperature electrolysis using both heat and electricity, and by a variety of thermo-chemical water-splitting cycle processes using only heat. Radiolysis is a potential technique for splitting of water that could use fusion energy directly to make hydrogen.
Fusion energy could be the ultimate best source of the energy needed to make the vast amounts of hydrogen needed for a hydrogen economy. Several studies done over the years have allhydrogen using fusion energy.
The DOE hydrogen program is currently developing these techniques, and is also developing high temperature nuclear fission reactors that could use these techniques for hydrogen production. Fusion can take benefit from this development. Use of fusion for low temperature electrolysis will have no impact on the fusion designs envisioned for electricity production. High temperature electrolysis and thermo-chemical water-splitting, which offer the potential for higher efficiency and lower costs, would have impact on the fusion designs and would add additional requirements and constraints to the already difficult fusion reactor design process. Strict control of tritium to avoid contamination of the hydrogen product will be especially important. Several fusion design concepts have been developed that appear to successfully meet the requirements for hydrogen production.
Production of hydrogen for the Hydrogen Economy is an attractive mission for fusion energyand could be a much larger ultimate use of fusion than electricity production. Special fusion reactor designs will be needed for high efficiency production of hydrogen, but low temperature electrolysis could be used with no constraints on fusion design. Fusion does have the potential to provide the ultimate source of fuel for the Hydrogen Economy. Ford seeks speed record for fuel cell-powered vehicle
Author: RP news wires
Ford Motor Company will take its 10 years of hydrogen research expertise to the Bonneville Salt Flats in August in an attempt to set the world land speed record in a hydrogen fuel cell-powered Ford Fusion.
The Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 fuel cell car – a collaboratively engineered racer with Ballard, Roush and Ohio State University – is one of two vehicles Ford’s fuel cell research team is helping prepare to set world land speed records. Ford researchers also are working with Ohio State University student engineers on its Buckeye Bullet 2, a fuel cell-powered racer that will compete for a similar world record in the unlimited-class category.
“Racing is part of Ford Motor Company’s DNA, so it seemed only natural for us to build a fuel cell race car that runs on hydrogen, a fuel that could someday play a key role in meeting the energy needs of the transportation sector,” said Gerhard Schmidt, vice president, Research & Advanced Engineeringfor Ford Motor Company. “Our goal in attempting this record is to further expand our technological horizons with fuel cell-powered vehicles. The collaboration with Ohio State University also affords us an opportunity to work closely with a prestigious university, which provides out-of-the-box thinking from student engineers and helps us recruit talented young people to work at Ford Motor Company.”
The land speed record attempt will take place during Bonneville Speed Week from Aug. 10-17. The attempt will be sanctioned by the Southern California Timing Association.
The Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 land speed record vehicle was designed by Ford engineers and fabricated and built by Roush in Allen Park, Mich. Ohio State students are providing the design of the 770-horsepower electric motor, while Ballard is supplying the hydrogen fuel cells. Ford retiree Rick Byrnes, a veteran Bonneville racer, will pilot the Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 car on its record attempt.
Ohio State students have designed their unlimited-class vehicle, dubbed Buckeye Bullet 2, from the ground up. Ballard donated the hydrogen fuel cells for Ohio State’s car, Roush its engineering services and Ford has provided overall project coordination and expertise in fuel cell drivetrains.
In 2004, Ohio State students set the unlimited land speed record for an electric vehicle by running 315 mph in the first Buckeye Bullet, dubbed BB1.
Hydrogen Part of a Broader Effort
Ford’s strategy for alternative fuels is built around multiple technologies, including hydrogen fuel cells. This flexible approach allows the company to meet goals for customer needs, environmental impact and shareholder interests. The strategy does not focus on one catch-all solution but includes a flexible array of options, including hybrids, E85 ethanol, clean diesels, bio-diesels, advanced engine and transmission technologies, and hydrogen fuel cells.
The company already has a fleet of 30 hydrogen powered Focus fuel cell vehicles on the road as part of a worldwide, seven-city program to conduct real world testing of fuel cell technology. The 30-car fleet has accumulated more than 540,000 miles since its inception in 2005.
Ford also is conducting tests with the world’s first plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, the Ford Edge with HySeries Drive. The Ford Edge with HySeries Drive uses a series electric drivetrain with an onboard hydrogen fuel cell generator to give the vehicle a range of 225 miles with zero emissions.
Currently, Ford offers gasoline-electric hybrids including the Escape Hybrid and Mercury Mariner Hybrid. The company will also offer hybrid versions of the Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan in 2008.
Everyone tries to break speed records, this time its Ford. Ford recently released details on a planned all new Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 car. The Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 fuel cell car - a collaboratively engineered racer with Ballard, Roush and Ohio State University - is one of two vehicles Ford’s fuel cell research team is helping prepare to set world land speed records.
This car is soon gonna be the fastest fuel car in the world. The car will be cooled through ice bath cooling system, this is mainly because the front is sealed in order to keep the drag coefficient as low as possible. This car features a 770-hp electric motor.
It's time for Canada to get back into the fusion power field John Skelton, Special to the Sun Published: Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Is there a way out of the wretched dilemma of significantly reducing greenhouse-gas emissions while still pursuing the growth required to maintain our standard of living?
A technology that Canada helped pioneer, but abandoned in a round of budget cuts, could be the answer.
After 65 years of effort and false starts, real progress is finally being made on fusion energy. Regrettably, Canada is no longer at the table, having withdrawn its support to the international consortium funding this work.
As of today, a fifth-generation fusion reactor, and the first design expected to produce more energy than it consumes, is under construction near Marseille in the south of France.
The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) is slated to attain "first plasma" by 2016 and is, indeed, the last step to the elusive "sustained ignition" objective (necessary for the production of large amounts of energy) first proposed by Manhattan Project scientists in 1942.
Sixth-generation, commerce-ready designs are on the drawing boards and await engineering results from ITER to move forward. Japan and China expect to pour first metal and concrete for a sixth-generation reactor by 2030.
Motivated by high energy prices and global warming, and an unexpected acceleration in the pace of technological advances, many consortium members are now compressing their initial timelines for the completion of their commitments toward a viable fusion reactor.
To cite just one example: In September 2006 the Chinese Academy of Sciences announced that its Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokomak (EAST) reactor had at last achieved a temperature of 100 million degrees, the threshold needed for sustained fusion. No wonder it is making progress: China has 4,000 researchers working full time on a wide variety of fusion energy projects.
Japanese energy specialists expect that the sixth-generation reactor design will produce in the range of one gigawatt of electricity and do so at a cost competitive to that of uranium-fuelled fission reactors. The raw materials to produce the fusion reaction fuels are water, lithium and deuterium (heavy hydrogen.)
Lithium is a common metal, in daily use in mobile phones and laptop batteries. There is enough deuterium for millions of years of energy supply, and easily accessible lithium for several thousands of years.
With essentially zero long-lived radioactive waste, zero greenhouse-gas emissions and none of the safety concerns associated with fission reactors, one can begin to see the attraction of fusion power.
It is the green technology with the most potential to make a real difference to the climate-change debate. There are, of course, many skeptics as to the wisdom of pursuing fusion power, and with reason. Progress has been elusive. In 1951, president Juan Peron of Argentina announced with great flourish that his country had, on the advice of an unscrupulous former Nazi scientist, succeeded in building a fully functional thermonuclear reactor. Pure fantasy.
Then the "cold fusion" fiasco of 1989 threw another dose of cold water on the viability of fusion technology. A long period of international bickering over which country should host ITER followed.
As with the development of any complex technology, the outcomes are uncertain and the costs high, but advances in much of science have been plagued with bunglers and bloopers.
The first crude steam engine, built in 1712 by Thomas Newcomen, intermittently produced all of one-half horsepower of output. It was not until some 100 years later that high-horsepower machines were widely available. Few would argue today that those years of trial and frustration were a waste of time.
Canada's resource-sector companies should be given incentives to develop fusion energy expertise. This policy would support their vital long-term interests by helping them prepare for the not-far-off future when conventional energy sources are significantly less economical to exploit. Energy and materials know-how is, after all, their prime line of business, and there is more to green technologies than building better wind farms and refitting homes with insulation.
The record profits in the resource sector make this a propitious time to increase investment in this transformative technology. The Canadian industrial average for R&D spending is 3.8 per cent of revenues, whereas the oil and gas sector invests less than one-tenth of this percentage. The way forward should be clear: Add fusion energy research to the list of projects qualifying for carbon tax credits. What companies do with this incentive is up to them.
Private corporations are notably more skilled at getting things done than are governments. It is time to begin to develop a robust Canadian economic potential in the post-Kyoto world. John Skelton, a former senior policy adviser with Industry Canada, is an educator with the Canada Museum of Science and Technology. © The Vancouver Sun 2007
LUTEC AUSTRALIA PTY LTD displays prototypes that amplifying electricity by at least five times. This technology could save our planet but it also begs the question; Where Does The "EXTRA" Energy Come From?: Lutec replies.
In 1831 the great English scientist Michael Faraday discovered that electrical energy can be produced by magnetism when accompanied by … motion. Notice that a rotary device infers motion, one of the two elements required.
167 years later in 1998 Ludwig (Lu) Brits and Victor (John) Christie applied for patent protection over an invention titled "A Means of Controlling a Rotary Device". The invention, the brain child of Lu Brits, was further developed by the two men from an existing concept design of Lu’s and were subsequently granted patent in New Zealand, Australia, the USA, Mexico, Israel, Turkey, Russia, Eurasia, South Africa, Africa, Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia and many other countries. See www.lutec.com.au for more details.
The rotor has permanent magnets embedded and stands in oil drum like fashion on a top and bottom bearing allowing it to spin freely through 360 degree rotation. External to the rotor, steel cores are wound with copper wire and placed in a fixed position independent of the rotor. Now of course the rotor cannot spin freely any more because the magnets are attracted to the steel core of the coil and so this is acting as a locking brake. The key is in how to cause the magnet to pass the steel core of the coil that is trying to attract then hold the magnet and so prevent the rotor from revolving.
As the magnet is attracted to the steel core of the coil it pulls the rotor with it, this is then motion caused by "Natural Magnetic Attraction". When the magnet is situated in the appropriate position opposite the steel core of the coil a short pulse of electrical energy is caused to be sent through the coil windings. This has the effect of turning the steel core temporarily into a magnet of like polarity to the permanent magnet. This causes repulsion from each other and so the revolution of the rotor continues. Absolutely critical to the efficient running of the machines is the accuracy of the timing and duration of the switching of the input pulse. The rotational speed is dictated by the amount of electrical energy of that input pulse. There is a lot of energy stored in the rotor created by the motion, however the motion itself is the result of the magnets being attracted to and then repelled from the steel core of the coils.
There are a couple of other very interesting things that occur about this time that we won’t go into here, and the coils in the LEA remain at room temperature even with the coils outputting their maximum energy. So we have a rotor that continues to spin, it is now in Motion, the. The motion permits induction resulting in the wiring of the coil/s to become exited. The amount of inputted electrical energy expended that magnetises the steel core of the coils, and does a couple of other things not mentioned here, is a far less amount than the electrical energy produced by the same coils. The input is a separate circuit to the output. All the input energy is expended. The resulting electricity production proves once more Mr Faradays discovery.
So where does the extra electrical energy come from? It’s not EXTRA energy, it is actually newly produced! And it comes from the interaction between the MAGNET’S natural magnetic attraction and natural magnetic repulsion causing the MOTION and the MAGNETISM in the coils then producing the new ELECTRICAL energy, just as Mr Faraday said it would.
Mr Faraday rocked the scientific establishment of the time back in 1831 with evidence that magnetism and motion create electrical energy. Brits and Christie are doing the same in 2007 by simply applying the principle extremely efficiently.