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You are here: > News > March 29, 2009

Cold Fusion Acknowledged 20 Years Later

The original press release from the American Chemical Society, and a compilation of mainstream news coverage of this historic validation on the anniversary of the original announcement.

by Sterling D. Allan
Pure Energy Systems News

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Source: New Scientist (has enlarged view)

Surely you've all heard by now of the major cold fusion validation breakthrough announcement that was made this last week on the 20-year anniversary, to the day, of Pons and Fleischmann's original announcement of the cold fusion phenomenon.

It looks like finally cold fusion may have turned the corner from being a spurned, fringe science to being embraced by the scientific community after a long and cold separation.

A March 23 press release by the American Chemical Society, a flagship peer review organization of mainstream science, states:

Researchers are reporting compelling new scientific evidence for the existence of low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR), the process once called "cold fusion" that may promise a new source of energy. One group of scientists, for instance, describes what it terms the first clear visual evidence that LENR devices can produce neutrons, subatomic particles that scientists view as tell-tale signs that nuclear reactions are occurring.

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, 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)

About ACS

The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 154,000 members, ACS is the world's largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

Since that landmark announcement, many major news organizations have picked up the story.

I've been getting several emails a day from people alerting me to this landmark development.  

We actually ran a link to this development on the day it first unfolded.  But due to the milestone nature, I thought it would be good to post a compilation of some of the mainstream press coverage as indexed by Google.

# # #

Coverage from Around the World

Results for <Cold Fusion> search in Google News, March 29, 2009 5:45 am

Navy Chemist May Have Rediscovered 'Cold Fusion'

FOXNews - ‎Mar 25, 2009‎
The 'cold fusion' device produced this pattern of 'triple tracks' that may be caused by high-energy neutrons resulting from a nuclear reaction. ...

Cold fusion warmed over (subscription) - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
Cold fusion was a heart-stopping idea. Take some off-the-shelf electrochemistry kit, add heavy water and presto - no more energy crisis. ...

Scientists in possible cold fusion breakthrough

AFP - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
WASHINGTON (AFP) — Researchers at a US Navy laboratory have unveiled what they say is "significant" evidence of cold fusion, a potential energy source that ...

Cold Fusion at 20: Hope Springs Eternal

Newsweek - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
For those of you with memories that go back to 1989, the news that cold fusion has not slinked off into the abyss might come as a bit of a surprise. ...

After 20 years: New life for cold fusion?

Scientific American - ‎Mar 23, 2009‎
By Katherine Harmon in 60-Second Science Blog Is the science community warming to cold fusion? It's been 20 years to the day since Martin Fleischmann and ...

Cold fusion experimentally confirmed - ‎Mar 23, 2009‎
PORTLAND, Ore. — US Navy researchers claimed to have experimentally confirmed cold fusion in a presentation at the American Chemical Society's annual ...

March 23, 1989: Cold Fusion Gets Cold Shoulder

Wired News - ‎Mar 22, 2009‎
By Randy Alfred 2 hours ago 1989: Two electrochemists announce they've produced energy with a fusion reaction in a benchtop apparatus at room temperature. ...

The greatest moment in science. Almost - ‎Mar 22, 2009‎
It was 20 years ago today that the world of science went crazy. Or as crazy as someone can go with a test tube in each hand. Which, as it turned out, ...

New Cold Fusion Evidence Reignites Hot Debate

IEEE Spectrum - ‎Mar 25, 2009‎
25 March 2009—On Monday, scientists at the American Chemical Society (ACS) meeting in Salt Lake City announced a series of experimental results that they ...

Cold fusion a possible source of power?

Nuclear Engineering - ‎Mar 25, 2009‎
There is compelling new scientific evidence for the existence of low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR) according to one group of scientists. ...

Scientists Claim 'Significant Evidence' Of Cold Fusion

RedOrbit - ‎Mar 25, 2009‎
A US Navy laboratory has produced “significant” evidence of the controversial energy source known as cold fusion, the Associated Press reported. ...

Cold fusion is back: Scientists report evidence

Merinews - ‎Mar 25, 2009‎
Cold fusion can be a low cost, abundant and environment friendly source of energy that can contribute towards solving mankind's energy problems. ...

Bringing Nuclear Fusion One Step Closer The power supply is ...

Softpedia - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
By Tudor Vieru, Science Editor The dream of developing a method of obtaining nuclear fusion has been a long-standing one for physicists, ever since the idea ...

Cold Fusion Proven True by US Navy Researchers - Will Suppression ...

Natural - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
(NaturalNews) The world owes Fleischmann and Pons a huge apology: The cold fusion technology they announced in 1989 -- which was blasted by arrogant hot ...

Undernews For March 24, 2009 - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
Has Washington gone mad? Certainly there are other factors affecting political matters, but if you are feeling that those in charge - regardless of party ...

Scientists confirm Cold Fusion experiment

TG Daily - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
By Samantha Rose Hunt Chicago (IL) - It has been reported that researchers from the US Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) have observed ...

US Navy researchers 'confirm cold fusion'

Personal Computer World - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
US Navy researchers claim to have achieved cold fusion, with its promise of safe and easy generation of electricity from seawater, according to a US report. ...

Cold Fusion Gets a Little Respect

Greentech Media - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
The study of low-energy nuclear reactions, aka cold fusion, is coming in from the cold. At least the intrepid band of scientists pursuing cold fusion ...

A Tentative New Hope for Discredited Cold Fusion

Discover Magazine - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
Cold fusion is the dream that won’t die for some nuclear physicists. If they could replicate the nuclear reaction that powers our sun under room temperature ...

New evidence of cold fusion - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
Researchers from the US Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) have reportedly observed lab-controlled cold fusion. ...

Cold fusion a hot topic – again

Science a Gogo - ‎Mar 24, 2009‎
by Kate Melville Researchers from all over the globe are reporting intriguing new evidence for the existence of low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR), ...

Cold fusion makes a comeback

KSL-TV - ‎Mar 23, 2009‎
By Ed Yeates SALT LAKE CITY -- That controversial table-top experiment dubbed cold fusion simply won't die. In fact, it isn't even fading away. ...

Cold fusion - back with a bang?

TechRadar UK - ‎Mar 23, 2009‎
Three separate groups of researchers - including one group from the US Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Centre (SPAWAR) - are reporting "compelling" ...

'Cold fusion' rebirth? New evidence for existence of controversial ...

EurekAlert (press release) - ‎Mar 23, 2009‎
SALT LAKE CITY, March 23, 2009 — Researchers are reporting compelling new scientific evidence for the existence of low-energy nuclear reactions (LENR), ...

Navy scientist announces possible cold fusion reactions

Houston Chronicle - ‎Mar 23, 2009‎
By ERIC BERGER Copyright 2009 Houston Chronicle A US Navy researcher announced today that her lab has produced “significant” new results that indicate cold ...

Our Coverage

We posted the following bullet in our news at on March 23.

Our Follow-up Coverage

  • Nuclear > Cold Fusion >
    60 Minutes: Cold Fusion is Hot Again - A report by CBS News' 60 Minutes program on April 19, 2009 states: "When first presented in 1989 cold fusion was quickly dismissed as junk science. But, as Scott Pelley reports, there's renewed buzz among scientists that cold fusion could lead to monumental breakthroughs in energy production." (PESWiki; April 20, 2009)

See also

Page composed by Sterling D. Allan March 29, 2009
Last updated December 24, 2014




"It is harder to crack a prejudice than an atom." // "I'd rather be an optimist and a fool than a pessimist and right." -- Albert Einstein

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