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Good Data

While both cells in the dual cell test have been very slowly increasing their P_xs indicators over the last several days, last night's test was particularly encouraging.

We decided to give the cell tiny little power pertubations to see what would happen as we changed current in the wire.  In the graph below we can see the power in (stepped blue line) and the power out.  Those are 45 minutes steps, which we know isn't quite enough time to let it come to equilibrium, so the rising difference between them might be explainable by that.  But once the power in holds constant, the temperatures in the cell increase.  That is VERY interesting.  Then when we tweaked the power down another step, whatever was holding the temperature up seemed to stop. 

The resistance over that time was like this for this cell:

Note the slight change of slope concurrent with the power_out rising between 07:00 and 09:00.  And then it drops off again as the current is decreased.


In cell 1.1 we had a similar story, only more dramatic.

Ont he second step down, the temperatures in the cell all rose.  The P_xs hit a new high of almost 4 W.  Then, again, when the power was held constant, the power_out rose again.  I'm open to suggestions on how to interpret this, but I'm seriously leaning towards it being the first sparks of the New Fire ever seen in this part of the world.  The resistance for this wire had a similar feature to the other wire's resistance.  Notice the resistance rise after 17:00 just when the power output rose?  Then, notice the change of slope from 06:00 to 09:00?  Curious, huh?  And, of course, the obvious fact that the resistance continues to generally decrease means the wire must still be changing dynamically somehow.  Celani believes that the wires absorb other gasses including Helium.  Perhaps Helium was absorbed and Hydrogen is slowly displacing it.


Is It Real Excess Energy?

I'm pretty encouraged.  Here's why:

  • The confidence limits for each cell at these powers are nice and tight as explained in this blog entry.  
  • Cell 1.0@105W has a confidence limit of 0.65W (5 min average)
  • Cell 1.1@103W has a confidence limit of 1.2W (5 min average)
  • Nothing in the environment was changing that we could see in the data.  
  • The pressure measurements corroborated an overall cell temperature rise.

Of course, I still have to be cautious, and here's why:

  • We are running both wires when we calibrated with only one.  But the lower powew performance with both wires fell reassuringly close to the calibration line.  
  • We are running at total power beyond the calibration. But not by many watts.  The shape of the curve is pretty smooth and predictable, though.
  • The pressure is still changing.  But the fast temperature rise events and then falls cannot be explained by this.  Additionally, many of our calibration runs were done over many days and had similar pressure drops.  When we did 0.5 bar starting runs, the results were also extremely close to the 1.0 bar runs, so the slight drift here shouldn't be ignored, but still doesn't seem to answer much.

So good progress!  We'll see how the data looks in the coming days.  I implore everyone to help scour the data, the assumptions, and the calculations for any flaws.  When we do declare that the Age of the New Fire is here, I want to do so with confidence.

In other news, we have rebuilt are doing a first heating on the insulated stainless cell, again, tonight.  This time it has a 2 amp fuse and full instrumentation on it.  We know, so far, that the thing has a very long time constant of four or 5 hours.  That'll be fun to calibrate.  It'll give is great averages, but not so great info on fast events.

UPDATE#1 - More interesting data

The last 34 hours pressure vs PXs on Cell 1.1 (Indian time on graph)




0 #123 Chuck 2013-01-25 20:50
#122, @CharlieTapp:

To the best of my knowledge, constantan wire is used primarily in theromocouples. Most common is iron-constantan and copper-constant an. Related nickel-based TC wires are Chromel and Alumel (both more than 90 percent nickel).

Since constantan is only about 45 percent nickel and the reaction expected is H-Ni, perhaps a more nickel-rich alloy might give stronger results. I'm not entirely clear on what part copper plays in the overall picture.

In fact, constantan theromocouples are used in industry where hydrogen is used as a reducing atmosphere, such as a continuous galvanize line in the steel industry, not to mention in the production of hydrogen itself from methane.

So it's not as if the combination of hydrogen and constantan at elevated temperatures has never happened before.
+1 #122 charlie tapp 2013-01-25 18:23
i was looking into constantan wire and it seems it is mostly used for strain gauges because resistance changes verry accurately with an objects thermal expansion just wondering if that is accounted for in your calculations? also does anyone know what kind of lighting some of the other labs that have had positive results had in thier labs, flourecent lighting puts off high frequency radio waves mabee that is stoping the reaction or holding it back,a few different expierements i have read talk about after leaving for the night for some reson when they returned in the morning they found a melted pile of possible lenr,try playing around with the lighting.
0 #121 Ecco 2013-01-25 14:01
A testing procedure to try when you're bored:

- With the current starting pressure of 1 bar, increase active wire power to 52W , heating wire to 88W (total 140W). Increase slowly to check out if glass temperatures remain within safe margins.

- Check out P_Xs at high temp.

- Let the cell cool to room temperature.

- Vacuum H, inject H again at the highest starting pressure that can be safely sustained at about 150W of thermal power. (5 bar?)

- Apply maximum power again (52+88W), let it rest in this way for 8-12 hours. Extend to 24 hours or more if interesting changes in impedance(red) occur.

- Let the cell cool to room temperature.

- Decrease pressure to 1 bar

- Apply 48W to the active wire for 90 min

- Apply 50W to the heater wire for 90 min (total: 98W)

- Increase to 52W + 88W

- Take note of changes in P_Xs compared to tests made before the high pressure run.
0 #120 Ron B 2013-01-25 00:39
It would seem possible to a 1 minute (Nyquist limit ) resolution with the existing data.

A nice digital storage scope on a few inputs/outputs would really be interesting.

Would you like to borrow one?
0 #119 Ged 2013-01-25 00:11

Really looking forward to this update. The data has been interesting so far, a lot of very good stuff developing.

I wonder if we can figure out the impulse response of the control system; as that would give a very powerful mathematical tool for detecting excess heat (or any other perturbation of the system's function).
0 #118 Ecco 2013-01-24 23:04
I guess I was wrong with my idea of MFMP's plans for today :lol:
(referring to the cooling off step started a while ago)
0 #117 Ecco 2013-01-24 22:28
@Robert Greenyer: ok, I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Anyway, regarding the cells currently being tested in the US: if it doesn't interfere with David Roberson's test (since the last power step has lasted more than 90 minutes and I feel the US team is going to leave it like that overnight), I wonder if would be possible to explore higher temperatures by raising input power to the active wire at like 50-52 watts (like last time) and to the heater wire at 85-90 watts or more if glass temperatures and the wire allow (the heater wire definitely should be able to take the load).

That's for testing the possible positive temperature feedback effect that the wire is supposed to have. At some point temperatures should rise significantly more than what input power alone would suggest.
0 #116 Robert Greenyer 2013-01-24 20:54
@Ecco / All

I think most of these questions are going to become redundant in the near future. We will be preparing a post over the next few days that will explain what I mean.
0 #115 Ecco 2013-01-24 20:29
Of course, what I proposed would need new calibrations, etc.
I'm not sure if this is feasible with wires that are already loaded.
0 #114 Ecco 2013-01-24 20:16
@Ryan Hunt: the cells haven't settled yet, but it looks like with about 100W of input power, P_Xs calculations will start to show positive values. However I personally do not find very reassuring that this is happening at the limits of the calibrations initially performed. The apparent xs is tiny too.

I'm aware that the steel cell will fix most of these problems, however according to the information provided it appears it will responding slowly to changes.

I would suggest, to, at some point, wrap the glass cells tubes in 0.5 mm thick metallic foil in order to help them building up heat with less power than currently needed, in a reproducible and safe manner, and to place external temperature sensors on it to be on the safe side with measurements too.

They wouldn't retain as much heat as the insulated steel cell, but they would allow observing changes quickly at higher temperatures than currently allowed by wire limits.

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