It’s a curious situation to be in. We have an inventor, Rossi, who is claiming that in a few months he will be unveiling a technology the like of which has never been seen — a technology which, if it works as advertised, could fundamentally change the way the world works.
Along with this we are living in a time of economic collapse, soaring energy and other commodity costs, political upheaval in the Middle East (heart of the oil producing world), a natural disaster with an ongoing nuclear crisis. There’s more than enough uncertainty, doubt and fear to go around.
Mr Rossi is giving us a ray of hope for something better amidst all this turmoil, yet the fact is that we are going to have to wait until October for final confirmation of whether he says he has what he has.
A question that has occurred to many is why did he do the public demonstration and announcement when he did — in January — when the launch is nine months later? Rossi was actually asked this question during a question and answer session with the Swedish technology magazine NyTeknik:
Johnny: Dear Mr Rossi. Why did you choose to go out public at this point in time, since you plan to demonstrate a 1MW plant within a few months?
Rossi: very good question, I would have preferred not to go public before the 1 MW operation. But my friend Focardi was getting mad at exiting now, so I did. Friendship has a price.
The answer is not completely coherent, perhaps because of Rossi’s English. But it seems that Sergio Focardi had something to do with the decision. Focardi has said that his involvement with the development of the e-cat is over, so perhaps he wanted to make the announcement at the completion of his work, and Rossi obliged him by participating in the January conference. In any case, says Rossi would have preferred to have remained quiet until October.
Now the cat is out of the bag, Rossi does not seem to be shy. He answers questions on his web site regulary and has done some fairly high profile interviews. He has invited certain trusted people to examine his device, and they have reported on their findings.
One thing that Rossi has not done is to discuss the most secret inner workings of the E-Cat. He has said that there is a catalyst he uses to enable the reaction and this will not be revealed until the patent has been approved.
So the public is left in a position of suspense. As with any new and controversial technology there are believers, skeptics, observers and analysts all trying to understand what is going on. We’ve been here before, most notably in 1989 with Pons and Fleischmann when they announced the discovery of a process for creating cold fusion.
Will this affair be a repeat of that previous one — where the hopes of many were high, but eventually were dashed? It’s not possible to say at the moment. At least we have a date to look forward to, and between now and October the buzz will most certainly be growing. Perhaps Rossi will do something more to help clarify the picture while we are waiting.