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General Update from HUG Lab

Written by Ryan Hunt on .

We are working incessantly on the science, the engineering, and all the organizational issues associated with all the kind offers of help we got last week at ICCF.  Malachi, LENR lab wizard extraordinaire compiled this list of things we are doing this week in the shop and lab.

US Version 1.3 Cells:

We are currently loading the Celani wire in cell A.  It is down to R/R0 of 0.88.  We will let it load for a while still and then we will perform another live run.  After the upcoming live run we will be making  a few changes the to protocol.

We will consolidate our data, graphs, observations and feelings about protocol 2.0 and write up our conclusions.  A few point are listed below:
    -First live run (simultaneous run in US and EU)
    -US live run with power through Celani wire in Cell A (#4)
    -Calculations on chemical energy and apparent excess heat

When this is out of the way, we want to move in a different direction for the Celani V1.3 Cells.  We want to make Cell B the new active cell and convert Cell A to a control cell.  Here are a few ideas for this change:
    -Take Celani wire out of cell A and analyze it.  Leave NiCr wire in for heating. 
    -Take Celani wire out of cell A and cut a small piece off to analyze.  Put the remainder in cell B to aid any possible LENR. 
        Optionally: Replace the NiCr wire in cell B with the Celani wire from cell A, or leave the NiCr in place and just add the wire from cell A as a third wire.  Opinions?

CTC Business:

We built up a shiny new Concentric Tube Calorimeter to display at ICCF18.  Now that the show is over, it's timet o put it to work.  We have moved both of our CTCs to a new location in the corner of the LENR Lab.  There is a wooden rack with space for four CTCs.  We are qualifying and calibrating the second one while building up a third CTC concurrently.

CTC #1: 50m Constantan

We will continue this experiment based on some suggestions from Ecco, a frequent and much appreciated contributor.  We will also start to prepare a report to discuss what we know so far.  A few points below:
    -Low resistance is difficult to trust the way we made the electrical connections
    -LENR Stick starts to leak at high temperatures, leak not detectable.
    -Aluminum foil allows us to reach a temp of +500C
CTC #2:

We are calibrating the second CTC and LENR Stick combo with an oxide wire.  An experiment has not yet been defined for this CTC and LENR Stick.  Suggestions?  We have some short lengths of Celani wire still available.  Another loading vs resistance test is a possibility.

Water Flow Calorimeter: Multi-wire LENR Stick

We have completed calibration on the water flow calorimeter.  After 6 runs we have a 200 mW confidence interval at 95% and a 300 mW confidence interval at 99%.  These are at high power, 32 Watts input.

We just completed assembly of a new LENR Stick with a total of 3 Celani wires.  One 270 layer wire at 69 cm long, one 350 layer at 70 cm long and one 400 layer at 46 cm long.  The resistance of these wires will be measured using a common ground wire for all three. 

The protocol document is viewable here:

Vacuum Bottle Calorimeter and other New Equipment 

We are doing the testing and characterization of the vacuum bottle calorimeters that we brought to ICCF.  A document explaining this device will be put together soon, since we already have the diagrams prepared and a lot of practice explaining it.  We also have the water jacketed camera cell available, but no immediate tests defined.  
More Power Supplies
We are assembling several more power supply/instrumentation trays to use with the new experiment apparatus that we have to play with.
Malachi and Angie seen here working on the new power supplies.  The power supplies are documented here (rough draft only): Power Supply Manual  (As you will see, much work remains for the user interface software.)

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+1 #50 Robert Ellefson 2013-08-07 21:08
Schematics, explanatory prose, three-dimension al renderings, formalized mission statements, quotes on new reactor vessels made from various materials and configurations, these things and much, much more are all in the works RIGHT NOW. This includes announcements about MASSIVE expansions to the number of people who will be working directly with us in coordinated fashion to achieve all of our objective in GLORIOUS DETAIL! All in the open! Live!
But first, there is the matter of due diligence. Lots of it. I could tell you that we have recruited a huge scientific advisory board consisting of nearly every one of the foremost researchers in the field who we were able to directly approach at ICCF18, but I would rather do it once I can name those advisors. Doing this requires a rather careful and deliberate process that I do not wish to undertake hastily, given the sensitivity of their employment considerations. We are at the beginning steps of the process still, owing to other, even more exciting preconditions that must be legally structured before we can proceed further into those steps. Meanwhile, science has been progressing at HUG and in Europe. We have been meeting and communicating with people across every level of society who are seeking to help us accomplish our goals, but we need to complete our carefully-delib erated, formal preparatory work before we can proceed to structuring many of these future relationships. We are also preparing the finishing work on a huge backlog of posts that we have been working up to, which you all will get to read shortly. In fact, other people might beat us to some of these posts, so keep your eye on the international press for a while....
0 #49 Ecco 2013-08-07 19:29
@bob: true. as I mentioned previously, the effect of dynamic changing conditions would have to be thoroughly tested with inactive wires beforehand to ensure that there won't be false positives.

On CTC cells, though, there is a resistance thermometer detector (RTD) element which senses the average temperature of blown air heated by the cell (LENR stick) along its entire length. See here for more details:


I think this should be able to smooth out changes due to the dynamic (or "creative") use of heating wires, to some extent, compared to doing the same on standard Celani cells (which use spot temperature measurements). If the total input power is always kept constant I would expect that computed output power would at the worst get understated.

Switching input power up/down however, this can cause temporary false positives during the power down phase.
0 #48 bob 2013-08-07 18:26
Apologize for being slightly off topic here, but your forum's spam filter didn't like my attempt to ask if anyone from MFMP had contacted Dennis Cravens about replicating his ongoing NI Week demo (ends tomorrow Aug 8)?
0 #47 charlie tapp 2013-08-07 18:02
@ robert greenyer on the subject of coated tubes why not use the one that got accidentaly coated in copper. also i have showed other people this websight and it is hard for them to understand can you guys post a simple schematic along with voltages, amperages,numbe r of thermocouples and what they represent might be helpfull for people to get on board. i have seen lots of other blogs were people do not realy understand what is going on with mfmp. but they want to really bad
0 #46 bob 2013-08-07 17:11
@Ryan, Ecco I would discourage the use of dynamic heating protocols on any calorimeter except for the water bath one. Varying the heating brings thermal inertia and internal convection effects into play and could easily produce false positives unless carefully calibrated for. Steady state (or quasi steady state) heat balance equations are so much simpler to deal with. The water bath is a thermal collector/integ rator with large thermal inertia itself, so thermal inertia in the apparatus itself doesn't matter as much there. One must be careful to apply the same dynamic inputs to the control bath, however.
0 #45 Ecco 2013-08-07 15:48
@Ryan Hunt: if your multi-wire LENR stick in the water calorimeter is mounted and ready to go, I think it's probably better to keep this idea for CTC#1 or #2 as especially if implemented fully (with the internal tubes for high thermal gradients on the wire(s) itself by conduction) it would require a lot of testing under different input power conditions with inert wires to verify that calibrations hold.

Without changing anything, it might be a good idea to frequently vary heating coil power on the LENR stick as it is, to achieve some sort of dynamically changing conditions. However, I think this time you should try experimenting relatively frequent (every 1-5 minutes) changes instead of holding power for a long time. Thermal inertia might disguise or fake some amount of excess heat, though.
0 #44 Ryan Hunt 2013-08-07 15:31
I love the graphics, Ecco. I like the potential for sharp gradient in the last ones. We need to decide almost immediately if we want to try wrapping two separate heating coils onto the existing LENR stick because we are otherwise ready to start loading immediately and begin that experiment as it sits. The process of wrapping the heaters will involve a great deal of dis-assembly and require testing to make sure the calibration of the calorimeter holds after the modification. The risk is that we still won't achieve a gradient comparable to the original Celani cell. On our V1.3 cells, I know we have observed greater than 100C/cm gradient between the mica support and the middle of the span.
Right now I am leaning towards going ahead the way it is and getting dynamic gradients by powering up and down in small steps. The advantage is we know what temperature the chamber is.
Any thoughts?
0 #43 Ecco 2013-08-07 12:48
@Robert Greenyer: regarding thermal expansion, actually I was referring to the coupling between the steel bases of standard Celani cells and the new steel tubes. I think there's potential for new hydrogen leaking problems especially as you increase temperatures. With an all-steel build there might better ways to cap and seal both ends of the main steel tube.
0 #42 Robert Greenyer 2013-08-07 07:45

Enamelling and thermal expansion matching is a well understood science. Think cookware. RTD would be nice, but it comes down to resources.
+1 #41 Ecco 2013-08-07 00:49
@Robert Greenyer: yes, that sounds the simplest/best idea, but watch out for thermal expansion.

By the way, speaking of improvements, would it be possible to use a RTD sensor on the steel converted Celani cells to measure the average outer temperature of the steel tube (or the average temperature of sections of it), like on the inner/outer tube on US CTC cells? This would allow to calculate the power emitted (even with the Stefan-Boltzman n law) much more accurately than with spot measurements using standard thermocouples.
+3 #40 Robert Greenyer 2013-08-07 00:14

A simple lagged steel tube, potentially, enamelled on the inside, may be best.
+1 #39 Ecco 2013-08-06 23:26
@Robert Greenyer: why gold coated quartz glass tubes? Aren't they made to better emit infrared radiation to the outside rather than retain it? They're mainly used in the infrared heating industry as far as I understand.

You need to make the tubes 100% opaque so that no IR radiation besides what the tube itself emits as it heats up escapes the cell.
+1 #38 bob 2013-08-06 23:03
@Robert Greenyer Why not go for tri-layer? From inside to out: metal - insulator (eg. Ceramic, fibre glass) - metal. That way the outer metal jacket will be at a low enough temperature to retain its structural properties (eg. H2 pressure). The inner 2 layers can extend the full length but be "floating". Ie. not participating in pressure seals. The bonus with this tri-layer is that with 2 thermocouples you get a conduction calorimeter to explore.
+1 #37 Robert Greenyer 2013-08-06 23:02
@Ecco #35

Ryan and I were discussing just this configuration last night.
+1 #36 Robert Greenyer 2013-08-06 22:36
@Ecco #22

Mathieu and I were discussing options last night and we came up with inner side gold coated quartz or even steel/copper. We recognise that getting above the curie temperature of nickel may be important.
+2 #35 Ecco 2013-08-06 16:36
@bob: even if it will turn out to not work as I originally thought, I still think it might be useful to have two heater wires on both ends of the LENR stick. Even without cycling input power between them, this configuration will allow MFMP to adjust the temperature gradient along the cell length while the experiment is running. Who knows how much of it is actually needed, or if tweaking it live will trigger LENR in unexpected ways. It's worth trying since it's trivial to add an additional external heating wire, compared to adding more heating wires inside the reactor chamber.

That a temperature gradient along the cell length could be required is Celani's hypothesis, not mine. I merely adapted it to my design and proposed a possible mode of operation along what was suggested during ICCF18 (ie active H2 flux as a possible LENR trigger) and in the existing LENR literature (for example the Piantelli patent).
+1 #34 bob 2013-08-06 15:28
@Ecco It makes sense that if LENR is some kind of lattice phonon coupling that an elevated temperature would enhance the effect. In any case what we have been debating is the requirement for a thermal gradient layered onto the elevated temperature.

What I was questioning in my last post was the suggestion that a gas phase thermal gradient is required to bring more H2 molecules to the "party". I believe that at the gas pressures we are talking about there are already lots of H2 molecules per sec colliding with the active wire. Any convective enhancement provided by a thermal gradient in the gas phase would be minimal.
+1 #33 Ecco 2013-08-06 14:58
Experimental data in the LENR literature (even from successful Celani experiment replications, ie STMicro/Mastrom atteo) show that the higher the temperature, the more intense the excess heat effect gets. This is called a positive feedback behavior, which is what allows self-sustaining operation or thermal runaway in fortunate cases.

So, I don't think that temperature is going to be a limiting factor, quite the opposite in fact.
+1 #32 bob 2013-08-06 14:40
@all According to gas theory the collision frequency of gas molecules with a solid surface is proportional to pressure and inversely proportional to square root of temperature. ie. higher pressures = higher collisions per sec; higher temperatures = lower collisions per sec (but at higher energy). At the pressures we are talking about the rate at which molecules are hitting our active surface is very large.

Does this argue against thermal gradients in gas phase as means to bring more H2 molecules to the active site? ie. the rate determining step in the chain is not the rate at which H2 can be brought to the surface but rather the rate at which absorbed H2 can be replenished at the LENR reaction site.
+1 #31 bob 2013-08-06 14:02
@Ecco Would not the exothermic LENR reaction create its own longitudinal gradient? ie. reaction sites would be at specific locations along a length of wire and create "hot" spots.

In metal hydride H2 storage systems you need to cool the metal hydride to absorb the H2. You need to heat it to drive off the stored gas. This would indicate that absorption of H2 in these materials is higher at lower temperatures. If the same effect is happening in the active layer on the wire then the hotter the wire gets the less H2 is going to be able to stay absorbed into the lattice. (recognizing that kinetics of absorption probably has an inverse relationship with temperature) Since absorbed H2 is presumably the fuel for the LENR reaction, it would indicate that to sustain the reaction at a particular site you need to continually remove the LENR heat or you will cause the local lattice to heat up and "starve" your reaction site. The one way you don't want to remove this heat is via desorbing H2 from the lattice. Much better to remove this heat by conduction into the bulk core of the wire. For that to work you have to have an adjacent "cooler" zone. Hence longitudinal gradient.

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