New LENR Test by Brian Albiston

The following has been sent to my by Brian Albiston (Wishful Thinking Energy here). He says he will start the test later today and live data will be posted here when the test begins.
This test is of a new type of reactor design and will use water vaporization calorimetry to determine COP.  The new design attempts to combat several of the failings of my previous reactor designs.  My last two reactors have used Kanthal A1 heating coils wrapped around the exterior of an alumina tube similar to the MFMP Glowstick designs.  The major problems I’ve had with this design are:
  • It requires a significant amount of power to heat the very small amount of fuel to the desired temperatures.  It requires 1200W+ to heat a gram of fuel to 1100C.  This becomes problematic for water vaporization calorimetry because the boiling becomes very vigorous and steam quality starts to degrade above 1200W (in my calorimeter).
  • The Kanthal wire must be heated to 1300C+ to reach a reactor interior temperature of 1100C.  The Kanthal A1 degrades quickly at this temperature and I have suffered many burnouts similar to other experimenters.  On my last reactor I burned out 3 coils before I gave up.
  • Exterior coils are a very inefficient way of delivering heat to the fuel as most of the heat is lost to the environment.
The current reactor is an “inside-out” design that places the heating element inside the reactor in contact with the fuel.  Since it is a new design that has never been tested before chances of failure are high…probably very high.  It is completely unknown how the heating element will behave in the fuel environment.  I’m using a $20 silicon nitride furnace ignitor.  The ceramic base of the ignitor is potted in alumina cement in the center of the reactor alumina tube.  The bottom end of the reactor is sealed using a stainless Swagelok fitting with brass ferrules.  The other end has a brass Swagelok fitting with pipe thread adapters.  Ceramic fiber insulation is used to attempt to contain the heat to the alumina portion of the reactor.
Silicon Nitride Ignitor
Silicon Nitride Ignitor
The ignitor wires pass through the Swagelok fittting and pipe and are then potted in epoxy.  The wires will definitely be a weak point of the design as they are very close to the hot area.  Making a gas tight seal around the wires also proved very difficult.  Even though they were potted in epoxy I found that air would escape the reactor by leaking between the insulation and the wire itself.  I had to connect the stranded wire leads to solid copper wire and pot both in a wire cap to prevent the leak.  The reactor was pressure tested and required several days to leak down from 44 psi to atmospheric.  A 0-500 psi pressure transducer is included at the top of the reactor.
Ignitor Potted in Alumina
Ignitor Potted in Alumina
A valve is included for pulling a vacuum prior to the start of the test.  My reactor will be placed vertically in the calorimeter and oxygen/nitrogen etc. will fall to the bottom which is where the fuel is also located.  Thus the fuel would be bathed in air with very little hydrogen if a vacuum is not pulled (at least until the oxygen and nitrogen are gettered by the other reactants).
Ignitor Reactor #1
Ignitor Reactor
The fuel is 3.125 g of INCO 255 Nickel and 0.303 g of LiAlH4.  The fuel amount is larger than I have used in the past so I have purposefully included a large amount of open space in the plumbing. The fuel amount was mostly determined by what was required to surround the heating element with fuel.
If the test proves successful at obtaining the desired temperatures and reactor longevity I will provide all of the reactor parameters including sizes, manufacturers, retailers etc.  If this thing fails at 200 C then frankly I don’t want any other experimenter wasting their time on it.  This test is also a test of the calorimeter and my streaming platform as much as it is a test of this new reactor design.
The calorimeter is made from a 5-liter capacity stainless vacuum insulated beverage dispenser.  The reactor is placed inside a 2″ pipe and the pipe is submersed in distilled water inside the vacuum flask.  The whole calorimeter is weighed on a postage scale so that water vaporization can be measured in real-time.  Water is boiled away in 500 g cycles and replenished from an adjacent reservoir automatically.
Calorimeter
Calorimeter
Electrical input energy is measured using a WattsUp? Pro energy logger.  The  COP is calculated using the specific heat and heat of vaporization of distilled water:
    Qelectric (kJ) = Watt Hours * 3600/1000
    Qideal (kJ) = 2256.7 * water (kg) + water (kg) * 4.19 * (100 – temperature_reservoir (deg C) )
    COP = Qideal /Qelectric
This COP includes all of the system losses including electrical losses in the variac, solid state relay, wiring, and heat losses from the calorimeter to the environment.  The COP should always be less than 1 (without excess heat) and will be lower at low power input because the heat lost to the environment is relatively constant (the water in the calorimeter is always at 100 C regardless of input power).
I’ve also included an Environmental loss adjusted COP that assumes a constant 33 W heat loss from the calorimeter to the environment (determined from the calibration).  This gives a better picture of the energy actually delivered to boil the water which is more useful since that is what is being measured with the mass loss.
    Qideal_env_adusted (kJ) = Qideal (kJ) + Qenvironmental_loss (kJ)
The environmental loss adjusted COP is only accurate when the calorimeter is boiling.  It will read a COP greater than one until the calorimeter heats up.  Both COPs will be most accurate at the end of each 500 g water mass loss cycle since the first part of each cycle is spent heating the water from the reservoir temperature to boiling.
The calorimeter was calibrated using a mock reactor jig with Kanthal A1 wire.
Calibration Jig
Calibration Jig
Avg_power_data2
Time_Data2
I plan to heat the reactor very slowly.  The first 12 to 18 hours will likely be spent out-gassing the LiAlH4.  After that I will raise input power very slowly every couple of hours as I check on it. I suspect that the INCO 255 nickel particle size is smaller than ideal and it may need time to sinter to a larger particle size that will hopefully be nuclear active.
The plotly data stream will be updated every 30 seconds.  The full 5 second data set will also be available real-time at the Dropbox links here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/20w0k1lhdxar3no/AACJXQNkn8XKoiUJQcn97oO6a?dl=0.  I will be available sporadically to answer questions.

The test is now live. Here are plotly charts.

Calorimeter Mass, Energy, COP
Temperature, Power, Pressure
Brian Albiston
  • pg

    If nothing else, these tests keep us entertained while we wait for the ecat test to be completed. If any of them gives us any lenr reaction it’s a bonus!

  • pg

    If nothing else, these tests keep us entertained while we wait for the ecat test to be completed. If any of them gives us any lenr reaction it’s a bonus!

  • Nicholas Cafarelli

    Several challenging new steps taken by Brian here. This will be very interesting – becoming even more interesting should the system generate many hours of data. Let us cross all our fingers and hope for a safe and long experiment.

    Get on the mailing list: http://ni.comli.com

    • Stephen

      It should provide some good data what ever the result. I like the inclusion of mass…

      Ahh i see its for the calorimeter still interesting though

  • MWerner

    Potting wires in a pass through connector can be accomplished by stripping a small amount of insulation from the middle of wire, soldering the wire at that point to fill voids between the strands, then potting inside of a housing. The solder fills the space where gas may pass internal to the wires, but the wire strands are continuous avoiding any weak points due to soldering different pieces of wire together. The housing can be machined to provide sealing features.

    • Wishful Thinking Energy

      Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll keep that in mind if I do a follow on of this type of reactor.

  • Ged

    This is a really cool and ingenious design. The calorimetry is wonderful, and there is a lot of potential with a design like this since the heat has to pass through the fuel before it can get to the environment, which might make changes in heat production more easily noticed. Also great work testing it before the run.

    Good luck, Brian! I am looking forward to seeing how this inside-out system can perform.

  • Bob Matulis

    A lot of hard work has been put into this and I wish you the best of luck. Agreed that the heater location poses risks of failure but worst case is to improve and try again! Once you sort out these issues I look forward to the reliable results provided by the Parkhomov style “water vaporization calorimetry”.

  • Gerard McEk

    A very ingenious design, Brian I will carfully follow the test. I like the direct COP measurement. That is quite advanced and I look forward seeing the results which I hope will be positive! Good luck!

  • Allan Kiik

    It is probably too late already, but if experimenters have some kind of magnetic field sensor (like these – http://www.robotshop.com/en/magnetic-sensors-compass.html ) or even old time phone speaker (without membrane) or guitar pickup, it would be nice to have whatever kind of indication of magnetic fields around the reactor to see if there is anything abnormal going on when reaction starts.

  • Gerard McEk

    A very ingenious design, Brian I will carfully follow the test. I like the direct COP measurement. That is quite advanced and I look forward seeing the results which I hope will be positive! Good luck!

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Yes Gerard & I too will be following Brian with this designs run.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Gerard TRIAC current & frequency response from Lugano test. Good luck on your power sourece design effort. jim

  • Sanjeev

    We had discussed the advantages of the inside out design earlier. I’m glad that you implemented it.
    Its a tricky but ingenious setup and it will be interesting to see how it performs. I’m still trying to understand the design, is there a cross section diagram ?
    If its the same Ni that showed overunity last time, then we may see some gain here also.
    Great work !

    • Wishful Thinking Energy

      I don’t know if this helps Sanjeev. Ignitor base is at the left, heating element surrounded by fuel in the middle, alumina plug and Swagelok on the right. This was taken before the rest of the plumbing was added to the left end.

      • Sanjeev

        Yes, it helps, thanks. I guess the fuel is directly in contact with the heating element? Can that cause problems ?

        • Wishful Thinking Energy

          I don’t know what it will do. That’s the purpose of the test I guess. The powdered nickel has not affected the resistance of the element unheated.

          • Obvious

            Neat design. Best of luck.

      • Valeriy Tarasov

        Good Luck !

        • Wishful Thinking Energy

          Getting the reactor open to inspect it proved to be quite difficult. I finally had to crack the alumina tube containing the igniter so that I could inspect it.

          The leads going to the igniter had melted together in a few places but I do not think this was the cause of failure because the wires were not measuring a short. The resistance was over 10K indicating an open circuit.

          The fuel was clumped around the igniter and had melted near the base. I think the base of the igniter is the most likely region of failure. The heating element broke away from the base during inspection. The porcelain igniter base was degraded and showed signs of high heat. I think most likely due to the high heat, corrosion, or possibly even due to the molten fuel a short occurred near the base of the igniter which further exacerbated the problem.

          It may be possible to extend the life of the igniter by encasing the element in a thin alumina tube and potting the base in alumina cement, but considering that the igniter was several hundred C from the desired temperature region when failure occurred I’m not hopeful that this would be a long lasting design. At this point I don’t plan on doing another igniter test.

          • Andreas Moraitis

            From a methodological point of view, your design appears to be more trustworthy than many others that we have seen. So it might be worthwhile trying to overcome the technical problem. But yes, it could be difficult, and it would possibly require multiple tests – therefore I understand your attitude. Thank you anyway for your work, it is highly appreciated!

          • Wishful Thinking Energy

            Whether I choose to continue with this design or with another I’m committed to using water based calorimetry. It is the only way I will trust the results myself.

  • Sanjeev

    We had discussed the advantages of the inside out design earlier. I’m glad that you implemented it.
    Its a tricky but ingenious setup and it will be interesting to see how it performs. I’m still trying to understand the design, is there a cross section diagram ?
    If its the same Ni that showed overunity last time, then we may see some gain here also.
    Great work !

    • Wishful Thinking Energy

      I don’t know if this helps Sanjeev. Ignitor base is at the left, heating element surrounded by fuel in the middle, alumina plug and Swagelok on the right. This was taken before the rest of the plumbing was added to the left end.

      • Sanjeev

        Yes, it helps, thanks. I guess the fuel is directly in contact with the heating element? Can that cause problems ?

        • Wishful Thinking Energy

          I don’t know what it will do. That’s the purpose of the test I guess. The powdered nickel has not affected the resistance of the element unheated.

          • James Andrew Rovnak

            Nice idea. Great test ahead, following with enthusiasm. Jim

      • Valeriy Tarasov

        Good Luck !

  • Dave

    The original design, such as used by Parkhomov, where the heating wire is wound outside of the core may have an advantage with regard to core temperature versus power. If the core does not have any additional heat flow paths other than through the heater wire it will reach the temperature of the heater wires themselves. It will be greater if LENR begins to take place.
    The heat flux flows outwards from the heater wires when the coil is tightly wound so very little drop in temperature occurs between the wire surface and the core. This is in contrast to the normal gradient in temperature that is seen in this new design as the heat flows from the wires. MFMP guys measured a 400 degree difference between the core and the outside of their glow stick at 1200 C at the core.
    I suspect that the drop will not be that large with the new plan, but it will likely be substantially greater than the old method.
    Congratulations for your many interesting ideas and I hope to see you succeed with this experiment. Thanks.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Yes & watch out for the negative resistance in the Hot E-Cat as you ramp temperature up. Jim
      PS are you firing this with a TRIAC source?

    • Obvious

      Most people are winding the coil way too tight, IMO. The overly tight wraps block heat flow from the inside heading out. The tight wraps heat each other as well as the tube, so this also causes coil failure by overheating.
      The interior of a tube will heat higher than the outside, even with loose coils, since the heat transfers equally from a larger area to a smaller one, while heat can escape outwards while being transferred to larger area.

      • Dave

        The tight winding of the coil ensures that the highest temperature is reached in the core for a certain amount of heater power. I suppose someone with plenty of time available could make a thermal model of the total heat flow and come up with the optimum spacing.

        You may be overly concerned that the coils are blocking the heat flow from the core to the outer surface of the device. Actually, I suspect that the thermal resistance of the coil material is less than that of the material filling the space between the coils. If this is true. as I would expect, the more coil material in the path the better the conductivity.

        The way I understand it is that the wire melts at a certain temperature and that adding insulation around it should allow the heater to require less power to reach that temperature. If the coil is wound tightly the core will approach the wire temperature at a lower input power which is ideal.

        Core power must transverse a finite value of thermal resistance on its way to the heater coil. This should ensure that the core is always a little hotter than the wire. And, as you expect core heat flux through the coil and eventually out of the system is going to increase the coil temperature. That is going to require the use of a coil material that can take the additional temperature rise due to LENR activity.

        It may become necessary for us to actually calculate or measure the operating temperature of the heater coils if we are to achieve a long term operating system. Measuring it’s resistance versus temperature under calibrated conditions may be required.

        • Obvious

          The conductive flow in or out of the tube is greatly inhibited by any material change, gap, etc.. Each material change requires IR radiation to jump the gaps, reducing heat flow. But the wires too close together cook each other, which is worse. Imagine the view factor for the wraps: they see a wire on two sides, the inner tube on the inside, and the outer tube to the outside. So overly tight wraps dump almost half of their radiated heat to the adjacent wrap, and around 1/4 in and 1/4 out, (to grossy simplify).The optimum spacing for longevity is 4X the wire diameter between wraps. Probably 2 to 3 times would be OK. If the coil is not hot enough without wrapping it super tight, then a better coil needs to be made that can reach the right temperature.
          The trick is to get the coil in maximum contact with the ceramic body, which essentially means cementing it in. If the cement is just the right thickness, it will increase the surface area on the outside, improving heat radiation, but will not actually thermally insulate the coil, or perhaps only insulate the coil slightly. The wires need enough separation to allow the cement to carry the bulk of the conducted heat, and absorb the bulk of the radiated heat to convert it to conducted heat (phonons).
          IMO, the reaction heat is radiated (photons) but is activated by phonons, so that the two can act simultaneously transferring heat in opposite directions. But the radiated heat needs to be converted to conducted heat near the exterior, or allowed to exit the device altogether, or the reaction cannot be controlled by the power supplied to the heater coil. Blocking the internally radiated heat with the coils may interfere with the heat-phonon-photon transfer/exchange mechanism.

  • Axil Axil

    This test run will provide another data point involving how the amount of fuel reacts in the reactor. The “fuel amount” theory suggests that any fuel load over 1 gram will produce a sharp energy pulse when the temperature of the fuel get into the LENR reaction light off range. This test does not protest the reactor structure (alumina tube) with a metal reinforcement to handle the explosion of LENR power at light off condition. This large fuel load might be expected to blowout the alumina tube. The size of the nickel powder particle is a new parameter here, This powder might not be as reactive as the larger powder sizes at the light off temperature range. The black body resonance temperature point is higher for this powder particle size than the larger powder particle sizes. This might affect the light off reaction mechanism.

    Rossi might adjust his fuel load to something under 1 gram to avoid explosion when the LENR reactor first sets in.

  • Axil Axil

    This test run will provide another data point involving how the amount of fuel reacts in the reactor. The “fuel amount” theory suggests that any fuel load over 1 gram will produce a sharp energy pulse when the temperature of the fuel get into the LENR reaction light off range. This test does not protest the reactor structure (alumina tube) with a metal reinforcement to handle the explosion of LENR power at light off condition. This large fuel load might be expected to blowout the alumina tube. The size of the nickel powder particle is a new parameter here, This powder might not be as reactive as the larger powder sizes at the light off temperature range. The black body resonance temperature point is higher for this powder particle size than the larger powder particle sizes. This might affect the light off reaction mechanism.

    Rossi might adjust his fuel load to something under 1 gram to avoid explosion when the LENR reactor first sets in.

  • Axil Axil

    In this test, the fuel heating method does not involve any possible EMF stimulation. Only heat is applied to the fuel and not EMF from an outside coil. If EMF stimulation is important, then the LENR reaction might not light off or the light off temperature might change. There are many parameters that have changed in this test from the others that have gone before. It will be hard to tell which parameter did what in the after test analysis.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      The Lugano PCE 830 current trace & frequency content from Rossi’s report. We both watch with interest to see what evolves. I know EM stimulation is necessary to get the ULM neutrons interacting with the NI & Li atoms to form & release subsequent isotope energy. The neutrons have to come from electron/ proton (hydrogen ions presence) at the metals surface. Great day & good luck Brian. Thanks for adding to our knowledge. Jim

      • Stephen

        Thanks Jim. I’m trying to picture that as a Fourier Transform. Would that be a square wave? Or something more complex?

    • Mats002

      Hi Axil, about how many parameters have you gathered so far, and what value ranges and combination have you ruled out thanks to all the experiments and other input? What about making a spreadsheet with all this information? Parameters can be grouped together and rule-outs can have a value for level of uncertainty instead of yes/no. If/when you can visualize your mind map that might help being in control and I am curious what it would look like 🙂

      • Stephen

        Wow Axils mind map!!! That would be awesome. But certainly multidimensional! 😉

  • Axil Axil

    In this test, the fuel heating method does not involve any possible EMF stimulation. Only heat is applied to the fuel and not EMF from an outside coil. If EMF stimulation is important, then the LENR reaction might not light off or the light off temperature might change. There are many parameters that have changed in this test from the others that have gone before. It will be hard to tell which parameter did what in the after test analysis.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      The Lugano PCE 830 current trace & frequency content from Rossi’s report. We both watch with interest to see what evolves. I know EM stimulation is necessary to get the ULM neutrons interacting with the NI & Li atoms to form & release subsequent isotope energy. The neutrons have to come from electron/ proton (hydrogen ions presence) at the metals surface. Great day & good luck Brian. Thanks for adding to our knowledge. Jim

      • Stephen

        Thanks Jim. I’m trying to picture that as a Fourier Transform. Would that be a square wave? Or something more complex?

        • James Andrew Rovnak

          Yes square waves have a lot of frequency content above the fundamental which one easily calculates from pulse width. Jim -Lets March on Stephen, this is real engineering fun at its best, no less! I’m too old to do these calculations anymore but fun to watch the new generation of engineers step up to the plate.

        • Dave

          Stephen, the actual waveform is shown on the left. It consists of half cycles of the drive waveform. The number of half cycles of both positive and negative excursion as well as the time between them balances out certain harmonics of the drive.

          The right graph shows that the second harmonic, fifth harmonic, eight harmonic, etc. are balanced out. The deep nulls reveal that the signal is not changing in the time domain during the period used to derive the spectrum.

          The fact that the second harmonic is balanced out reveals that there are an equal number of positive and negative half cycles present.

          It is possible that the spectrum shown on the right is a direct transform of the limited time domain signal shown on the left. I can not be sure of this without doing the complex math.

          • James Andrew Rovnak

            Dave when that current pulse hits the fuel element it deposits its EM content there is my take at both the positive & reverse current pulses in their time & that’s what drives & stimulates Rossi’s LENR powders. No balancing out but both hit the micro burst of LENR in the tube to stimulate it into reaction is my take. Both forward & backward current flows move the SSP electrons at surface of Metals NI & Li separately in time. This stimulation is needed to form Ultra Low Momentum (ULM) neutrons into existence form electron hydrogen ions collision’s at the metal surfaces. Just think about it. Larsen shows this beautifully in his graphs.

            http://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen?utm_source=uploader_profile&utm_medium=ssemail&utm_campaign=upload_digest

            There is a lot of contention about Larsen’s theory but It makes much sense to me as a nuclear engineer looking for ultra low speed neutrons to form the isotopes giving us all this energy too cheap really to meter finally.

          • Stephen

            Thanks Dave

          • James Andrew Rovnak

            Take a look at this Stephen for Li process in LENR

            http://unifiedgravity.com/resources/WO2014189799-PAMPH-330-2.pdf

          • James Andrew Rovnak

            Nice explanation Dave refreshed me on a few things also. Believe current pulses thru heater coil are directly influencing LENR process’s of Rossi & Parkhomov & MFMP GS3 testing with TRIAC sources. Doesn’t appear to be enough EM in Variac sources others have failed replication with. Think Chinese are getting EM input from stepping DC voltages quite a bit to start process in (ssm) mode for some period.

        • James Andrew Rovnak
    • Mats002

      Hi Axil, about how many parameters have you gathered so far, and what value ranges and combination have you ruled out thanks to all the experiments and other input? What about making a spreadsheet with all this information? Parameters can be grouped together and rule-outs can have a value for level of uncertainty instead of yes/no. If/when you can visualize your mind map that might help being in control and I am curious what it would look like 🙂

      • Stephen

        Wow Axils mind map!!! That would be awesome. But certainly multidimensional! 😉

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Bian mentions some solid state relays down stream of the VARIAC i presume. If this is the case wouldn’t we expect EM stimulation from chopped sine wave power source input. Would still like to see spectrum of input power to igniter. Didn’t realize Brian was using VARIAC in some fashion. PCE 830 power spectrum analyzer gave nice picture of input current pulse & their spectrum profiles for Lugano i,e, see picture of its output below in my other comment. CHEERs Axil this test will be interesting, period.

  • Axil Axil

    Regarding: silicon nitride furnace ignitor

    Nitrogen is a known LENR reaction poison. The experimenter should have used a silicon carbide ignitor to avoid possible nitrogen contamination of the LENR reaction zone. Nitrogen may keep this experiment from showing any LENR activity.

    • Ged

      It’ll be interesting to see how well the furnace element maintains integrity, or if it can leak silicon and nitrogen into the reaction.

  • Mike Henderson

    I love the approach and the validation / calibration work done up front.

    A word of caution is that SiC will react with hydrogen at high temperatures. I suppose it would form methane and slilane and perhaps longer chain molecules. In the future, you may wish to seal the heater element inside an alumina sleeve.

    One manufacturer uses a silica coating on their SiC heating elements to protect from interaction with hydrogen.

    “There is a protective coating of silicon dioxide on the silicon carbide. Hydrogen reduces this
    coating and causes the Starbar to deteriorate. Very dry or very wet hydrogen is detrimental to
    long service life.

    Starbar heating elements can be used in Hydrogen at DP +75 up to 2370ºF (1300ºC) at a watt
    loading of 25-30 watts per square inch. The maximum recommended temperature for Hydrogen at DP-60ºF is 2000ºF at 25-30 watts per square inch.

    We have found that an atmosphere which contains any percentage of hydrogen whatsoever will react with silicon carbide if the temperature exceeds 2370ºF (1300ºC).”

    Source: http://www.isquaredrelement.com/pdf/atmospheres.pdf

    • Mike Henderson

      In fact, silicon nitride is used in H2 / O2 rocket motors. It appears to be a very good choice for this environment.

  • Mike Henderson

    **facepalm**

    Brian is using a silicon nitride heater, not silicon carbide. If you read my previous post here about reactions between SiC and H you can ignore it. My apologies.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Thanks for commenting Mike, very nice thinking as usual, Jim

    • Mike Henderson

      In fact, silicon nitride is used in H2 / O2 rocket motors. It appears to be a very good choice for this environment.

  • vokzzi V

    This experiment will be successful regardless of the results.We can not repeat the same thing over and over again and expect to learn new things.
    Good luck , Brian !

  • vokzzi V

    This experiment will be successful regardless of the results.We can not repeat the same thing over and over again and expect to learn new things.
    Good luck , Brian !

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian you may see the home E-Cat show up about 200 C – watch carefully! Jim

  • Axil Axil

    Its may be possible to directly apply high freqency low voltage induction heaating of the alumina tube to eliminate the cost of heater elements and heating coil failures. Such induction heating equipment is cheap.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/1000W-ZVS-Low-Voltage-Induction-Heating-Board-Module-Tesla-Coil-New/111670733608?_trksid=p2141725.c100338.m3726&_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIC.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20141212152715%26meid%3De12ca0f1910342c9905ff26fe7f1d731%26pid%3D100338%26rk%3D11%26rkt%3D28%26sd%3D321746752332

    It also may be possible to determine the temperature of the aluminat tube by calibrating its electrical resistance against temperature.

    • Wishful Thinking Energy

      I’ve steered away from induction and microwave heating in the past because it makes using thermocouples more difficult. Perhaps using the resistance method of temperature measurement or an IR pyrometer would make it more feasible.

      • Robert Ellefson

        I’m currently using Molybdenum wire, which I’m planning to encapsulate in Resbond 920 to prevent oxidation, if I’m lucky. If that doesn’t work, I may go to an inert atmosphere, so that I can use the Molybdenum wire as an RTD and stimulus coil combination. I really don’t want to rely on thermocouples inside the solenoid, for the same reasons you are avoiding them. If I could find a reasonable-cost way to platinum-plate this molybdenum wire, I would do that in preference to relying on the Resbond 920 encapsulant. However, the long-term viability of that route is also in question, as I’m not sure that the plating would survive extended operation at these temperatures.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Brian I would step power up/down a little to stimulate LENR process more. You seem to be loosing some LENR thru lack of stimulation is my guess. IMHO Jim

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        Jim, as I note in the test description you must ignore the “Env. Loss COP” until the calorimeter is boiling. This early in the test it will not be accurate because it assumes a constant 33W heat loss from the calorimeter to the environment which is only true when the water inside has reached 100C. I wish we seeing positve COP but it is too early at this point.

        • James Andrew Rovnak

          I think the water is boiling way before we reach 200 C entry of LENR home Heater E-Cat energy point, No Wishful? I thought make up water was already at boiling point? What is your opinion on that observation?

          Sorry I think I see what you are saying. I thought make up water was on heater plate to maintain approximate boiling point?

          • Wishful Thinking Energy

            Looking at the 5 second data it looks like something shorted at 6:40:31, sample 13426. Over the course of 7 minutes the current jumps from 0.614 Amp to over 2 Amps at 6:47:28, sample 13509. During this period the power increases from to 72 W to 244 W while the input voltage remains constant. Near the end temperature is all over the place. The thermocouple is measuring exterior temperature. Interior temperature will likely be several hundred degrees higher than the exterior.

            I’ll have to wait for the reactor to cool to do the post-mortem and determine if this design is worth a second try.

          • Ged

            Does sound like some sort of runaway electrical event, such as conduction from the molten Al as you speculated below. Aluminum is 59% as electrically conductive as copper, and lithium is about a third of Al, but still within the same order of magnitude conductivity as copper.

            I guess an easy fix is to somehow get a ceramic sleeve to hide the igniter and its wires from the fuel, if the fuel shorting out the wires is the culprit.

          • Axil Axil

            Nanoparticles of aluminum can mimic many elements based on the number of atoms in the nanoparticle. This is called superatom behavior

            http://www.pnnl.gov/science/highlights/highlight.asp?id=803

          • Gerard McEk

            Brian, did you do an outopsy yet?

          • Wishful Thinking Energy

            No, it’ll probably be tomorrow morning before I can get to it unfortunately.

      • Mats002

        Power up, temp up, psi up and goes down after a while, looking good so far. If something gets nuclear in this run I hope it is the device and that all family members are happy!

        • James Andrew Rovnak

          Do you know what Brian’s power source looks like. Both Parkhomov & Rossi use EM noisy TRIACs & I don’t know of any successful LENR stimulation using VARIACs, do you? Jim

    • Alain Samoun
      • pelgrim108

        Alain, here is a video from somebody using induction to heat a fuel tablet. I have no idea what the worth of the video is but it is short and entertaining.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j11d1g1oSFo

        • Alain Samoun

          Interesting. Thanks

  • Axil Axil

    Its may be possible to directly apply high freqency low voltage induction heaating of the alumina tube to eliminate the cost of heater elements and heating coil failures. Such induction heating equipment is cheap.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/1000W-ZVS-Low-Voltage-Induction-Heating-Board-Module-Tesla-Coil-New/111670733608?_trksid=p2141725.c100338.m3726&_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIC.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20141212152715%26meid%3De12ca0f1910342c9905ff26fe7f1d731%26pid%3D100338%26rk%3D11%26rkt%3D28%26sd%3D321746752332

    It also may be possible to determine the temperature of the aluminat tube by calibrating its electrical resistance against temperature.

    • Wishful Thinking Energy

      I’ve steered away from induction and microwave heating in the past because it makes using thermocouples more difficult. Perhaps using the resistance method of temperature measurement or an IR pyrometer would make it more feasible.

      • Robert Ellefson

        I’m currently using Molybdenum wire, which I’m planning to encapsulate in Resbond 920 to prevent oxidation, if I’m lucky. If that doesn’t work, I may go to an inert atmosphere, so that I can use the Molybdenum wire as an RTD and stimulus coil combination. I really don’t want to rely on thermocouples inside the solenoid, for the same reasons you are avoiding them. If I could find a reasonable-cost way to platinum-plate this molybdenum wire, I would do that in preference to relying on the Resbond 920 encapsulant. However, the long-term viability of that route is also in question, as I’m not sure that the plating would survive extended operation at these temperatures.

    • Alain Samoun
      • RFguy

        Alain,

        At what frequency does this device operate? Also, have you been able to melt the alumina tube with it?

        Is it possible to determine the amount of energy deposited inside your load with precision?

        Could you describe the method you are using to match the induction heater to the load so that adequate power is delivered? I have never played with one of these types of devices but have plenty of experience with RF transmitters in general. Most of the time it requires a careful design in order to obtain efficient operation at the required output power.

        • Alain Samoun

          9-10 KHz but this will have to be confirmed.
          I think that the melting point of Al2O3 is above 2000C I don’t intend to get so high. Your other questions need development but this thread is to follow Brian test. See you later…

      • pelgrim108

        Alain, here is a video from somebody using induction to heat a fuel tablet. I have no idea what the worth of the video is but it is short and entertaining.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j11d1g1oSFo

        • Alain Samoun

          Interesting. Thanks

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Nice test Brian, great work, Jim

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    So far excellent Brian, I think you have done it. you got the home E-Cat at 200 C now let make for the Hot E-Cat at 600 C Jim

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Check Rossi’s blog, I told him to stop over & give you a pat on the back for a great show.

    http://www.rossilivecat.com/

  • Bob Matulis

    Power and temp tracking pretty well as of 15:14. Will be fun to see what happens when T>600C.

  • Bob Matulis

    Power and temp tracking pretty well as of 15:14. Will be fun to see what happens when T>600C.

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian I would step power up/down a little to stimulate LENR process more. You seem to be loosing some LENR thru lack of stimulation is my guess. IMHO Jim

    • Wishful Thinking Energy

      Jim, as I note in the test description you must ignore the “Env. Loss COP” until the calorimeter is boiling. This early in the test it will not be accurate because it assumes a constant 33W heat loss from the calorimeter to the environment which is only true when the water inside has reached 100C. I wish we seeing positve COP but it is too early at this point.

      • James Andrew Rovnak

        I think the water is boiling way before we reach 200 C entry of LENR home Heater E-Cat energy point, No Wishful? I thought make up water was already at boiling point? What is your opinion on that observation?

        Sorry I think I see what you are saying. I thought make up water was on heater plate to maintain approximate boiling point?

  • Obvious

    Neat design. Best of luck.

  • Obvious

    Most people are winding the coil way too tight, IMO. The overly tight wraps block heat flow from the inside heading out. The tight wraps heat each other as well as the tube, so this also causes coil failure by overheating.
    The interior of a tube will heat higher than the outside, even with loose coils, since the heat transfers equally from a larger area to a smaller one, while heat can escape outwards while being transferred to larger area.

    • Dave

      The tight winding of the coil ensures that the highest temperature is reached in the core for a certain amount of heater power. I suppose someone with plenty of time available could make a thermal model of the total heat flow and come up with the optimum spacing.

      You may be overly concerned that the coils are blocking the heat flow from the core to the outer surface of the device. Actually, I suspect that the thermal resistance of the coil material is less than that of the material filling the space between the coils. If this is true. as I would expect, the more coil material in the path the better the conductivity.

      The way I understand it is that the wire melts at a certain temperature and that adding insulation around it should allow the heater to require less power to reach that temperature. If the coil is wound tightly the core will approach the wire temperature at a lower input power which is ideal.

      Core power must transverse a finite value of thermal resistance on its way to the heater coil. This should ensure that the core is always a little hotter than the wire. And, as you expect core heat flux through the coil and eventually out of the system is going to increase the coil temperature. That is going to require the use of a coil material that can take the additional temperature rise due to LENR activity.

      It may become necessary for us to actually calculate or measure the operating temperature of the heater coils if we are to achieve a long term operating system. Measuring it’s resistance versus temperature under calibrated conditions may be required.

      • Obvious

        The conductive flow in or out of the tube is greatly inhibited by any material change, gap, etc.. Each material change requires IR radiation to jump the gaps, reducing heat flow. But the wires too close together cook each other, which is worse. Imagine the view factor for the wraps: they see a wire on two sides, the inner tube on the inside, and the outer tube to the outside. So overly tight wraps dump almost half of their radiated heat to the adjacent wrap, and around 1/4 in and 1/4 out, (to grossy simplify).The optimum spacing for longevity is 4X the wire diameter between wraps. Probably 2 to 3 times would be OK. If the coil is not hot enough without wrapping it super tight, then a better coil needs to be made that can reach the right temperature.

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Still believe you could use some EM stimulation from steps up/down at this point like beginning of test. Jim Are your solid state switches giving you a chopped sine wave power input? Jim Is power input just due to sine amplitude applied to fuel? Must look at power circuit, but not sure where iits located?

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Still believe you could use some EM stimulation from steps up/down at this point like beginning of test. Jim Are your solid state switches giving you a chopped sine wave power input? Jim Is power input just due to sine amplitude applied to fuel? Must look at power circuit, but not sure where iits located?

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian here is Rossi’s EM pulsed current & frequency spectrum form Lugano report. How does it compare to yours, if that info is available? Jim

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian here is Rossi’s EM pulsed current & frequency spectrum form Lugano report. How does it compare to yours, if that info is available? Jim

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Good night Brian see you in the morning. do you have an assistant taking over while you get some well deserved sleep?
    Jim

  • Sanjeev

    Pressure is falling now. A good sign.
    For some reason the graphs are not auto updating or scrolling for me.

    • Ged

      I’ve had that problem before. They are scrolling for me thankfully, on Firefox, but not sure what makes or breaks that behavior with it.

      • Sanjeev

        I clicked pan and panned it to see the latest data and it works. Somehow the last data was going out of the frame for me. All well now.

  • Sanjeev

    Pressure is falling now. A good sign.
    For some reason the graphs are not auto updating or scrolling for me.

    • Ged

      I’ve had that problem before. They are scrolling for me thankfully, on Firefox, but not sure what makes or breaks that behavior with it.

      • Sanjeev

        I clicked pan and panned it to see the latest data and it works. Somehow the last data was going out of the frame for me. All well now.

  • Bob Matulis

    Any word when power will be stepped up? It has been about 6 hours since the last change

    • Ged

      Sounds like he’s going to wait 12 to 18 hours to outgas the LiAlH4 before doing any power steps.

      • Mike Henderson

        Just bumped up 5 W.

        • Ged

          Well, he did only say “likely” after all ;), a nice surprise. Now that it’s past the 33 W equilibrium point, guess we should start seeing heating towards boiling and mass loss, soon.

          • Mike Henderson

            I found the timing of your comment and the power step mighty coincidental. He’s toying with us? 😉

  • Bob Matulis

    Any word when power will be stepped up? It has been about 6 hours since the last change

    • Ged

      Sounds like he’s going to wait 12 to 18 hours to outgas the LiAlH4 before doing any power steps.

      • Mike Henderson

        Just bumped up 5 W.

        • Ged

          Well, he did only say “likely” after all ;), a nice surprise. Now that it’s past the 33 W equilibrium point, guess we should start seeing heating towards boiling and mass loss, soon.

          • Mike Henderson

            I found the timing of your comment and the power step mighty coincidental. He’s toying with us? 😉

  • Ged

    Quick question: wondering if the mass graph of the water is working, or if it’s not active yet until we get to higher powers and boiling? Or just too cool to lose any mass at a noticeable rate?

    • Sanjeev

      I think the water is still well below 100C. We will not see the mass change until it starts boiling.

    • Mike Henderson

      I wondered the same. The power input is only about 33 watts, the same as the level he said was naturally lost to the surroundings when the calorimeter is at 100 deg C. So perhaps there isn’t much evaporation yet.

  • Ged

    Quick question: wondering if the mass graph of the water is working, or if it’s not active yet until we get to higher powers and boiling? Or just too cool to lose any mass at a noticeable rate?

    • Sanjeev

      I think the water is still well below 100C. We will not see the mass change until it starts boiling.

    • Mike Henderson

      I wondered the same. The power input is only about 33 watts, the same as the level he said was naturally lost to the surroundings when the calorimeter is at 100 deg C. So perhaps there isn’t much evaporation yet.

  • Sanjeev

    The reactor settled after 30 mins. A long time constant.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Are you plotting data on spread sheet Sanjeev? Jim

  • Sanjeev

    The reactor settled after 30 mins. A long time constant.

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Are you plotting data on spread sheet Sanjeev? Jim

  • Mats002

    Power up, temp up, psi up and goes down after a while, looking good so far. If something gets nuclear in this run I hope it is the device and that all family members are happy!

    • James Andrew Rovnak

      Do you know what Brian’s power source looks like. Both Parkhomov & Rossi use EM noisy TRIACs & I don’t know of any successful LENR stimulation using VARIACs, do you? Jim

  • Stephen

    Thanks Dave

  • Mats002

    Same procedure goes on iteration for iteration, massage H into the surface of Ni, that is the idea and it keep looking good. The earliest temp that might start some excess heat is around 600 C depending on which physical point temp is measured at.

    • Mats002

      Question to Brian: how/where is core temp measured in this setup? If temp is measured outside core (which is likely to avoid temp measure failure), do you have some reference to know temp diff between core and temp measure probe?

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        Mats, the temp is measured on the exterior of the reactor. The interior temperature will be much higher. There is likely a huge variation of temperature from the surface of the igniter and the fuel closest to it to the fuel at the reactor walls. I couldn’t come up with any way of getting an accurate calibration on this since you basically have to have the fuel in the reactor to get accurate heat transfer characteristics.

    • pelgrim108

      Question to Brian:
      1. what is TC1 measuring? ( I am guessing bucket water temp)
      2. what caused the 2 kilogram jolt at 03:48? ( I am guessing first bubbles from boiling)
      3. Is the fuel conducting some electrical current from the ignitor?

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        1. Correct, bucket water temp.
        2. The scale occasionally has data dropouts that appear as momentary readings of 10000g. Fortunately they are rare.
        3. Maybe this was the cause of failure? Perhaps as the Li and Al melt they start to conduct a lot of current? Hard to know at this point.

    • Abd Ul-Rahman Lomax

      I see this design and my reaction is “Uh oh! There we go again!”

      If one has a Parkhomov design, uninsulated, yes, it takes a lot of power to make the thing hot. Parkhomov addressed this by packing his reactor in insulation. He continued to have various problems related to the reactor burning out. The design, with the heating coils wrapped around the reactor alumina tube, at both ends, with the thermocouple in the middle, and with alumina cement over the heating coils, is guaranteed to create very hot coils, with the reactor underneath being cooler, and with the thermocouple being even cooler, as can clearly be seen in the Vasilenko image just before reactor failure.

      Use a tube furnace, and insulate the furnace well. Make the furnace large enough to hold two fuel tubes, with whatever else is put on them. Contact between hot hydrogen and thermocouples is not advisable. It is possible that PtRh thermocouples will survive this environment, but I would not guarantee it.

      Rather, use a Jiang approach to measure heat. If there is a stable insulator (constant heat conductor), and the temperature on both sides of it is measurement, the energy passing through that insulator will be proportional to the temperature difference. This can and should be calibrated with dummy cells with a heater inside, everything else identical.

      So I think of this: The fuel tubes (alumina containing various fuel mixtures) are held end-wise in the center of an alumina tube. Call it Tube 2, the original fuel tube being Tube 1. Tube 2 is open on the ends, so that hydrogen gas, if released, can escape. While a thermocouple could be placed on the outside of Tube 1, I’d leave it out. On the outside of Tube 2 is Thermocouple 2. Tube 2 is held centrally in Tube 3, another alumina tube. Thermocouple 3 is on the outside of Tube 3. There is a single thermocouple inside the tube furnace, though if one wants to verify the uniformity of temperature in the tube furnace, more than one could be used.

      (With experience, some of these thermocouples might be eliminated as unnecessary. Bottom line, we don’t have the experience yet, Thermocouples are cheap compared to the labor involved in running these experiments)

      The furnace thermocouple is used to regulate tube furnace temperature. To reach a study temperature, with no fuel, a known power would be needed. The insulation should be carefully prepared to be reproducible, a constant. If there is major XP, the input power to the tube furnace heater will be reduced to keep temperature constant. That will be an immediate measure of XP, if this happens. However, that’s a slow response.

      If there is burst power, it will show as an increase in T2 vs T3. T3 itself may rise in temperature, being heat-sinked to the oven environment. All this can be calibrated at the range of temperatures used.

      Do not burn out your heaters! If you need more power, use better insulation. If Kanthal is not stable at the temperatures required (Kanthan A-1 should be good up to 1400 C continuous operating *if it is not physically stressed.* What has been happening, I think, is that burying this in alumina cement has been stressing it as the cement cracks.)

      Don’t consider that the first job is “replicating XE.” Rather, the first job is creating a test-setup that can reliably heat fuel to controlled temperatures, and measure any energy release (including chemical energy, and using known chemical mixtures would be one way of calibrating the setup).

      Record the temperature data with fast capture, at least until this is shown to be unnecessary. If there is concern about possible hot spots and thermal runaway, from XE, it is very unlikely that the tube will fail before there is a measurable rise in temperature of T2.

      Heating with a tube furnace should be very uniform, unlike the quite irregular Parkhomov design.

      Some ideas: weigh the fuel tubes with sufficient accuracy to be able to determine if hydrogen has escaped. Enclose the tube furnace in a containment that is gas-tight, and then capture escaping gases and test them for hydrogen.

      The really good idea that Parkhomov had was supplying hydrogen through a measured quantity of Lithal. It is also possible that the lithium-aluminum alloy that will probably wet the nickel in the hot fuel tube is of importance. To determine what is happening, remember the principle of single-variable controls. There can be unexpected differences from variables, and when more than one variable is changed, it becomes difficult to tease out the causes of observed effects. So I’d think of mixtures of nickel, lithal, and lithium-aluminum. One control cell could be *exactly the same as a test cell,” but very leaky, so that the hydrogen leaks out. So the only variable, then, is hydrogen pressure.

      As has been suggested by others, a major cause of tube failure here is very high hydrogen pressure. So use heavier tubes (as well as being prepared for explosion at all times in the experiment, at least above 100 C.) There may still be very high pressure in the tubes after the experiment, so exercise caution even when they are cooled.

      Repeat experiments many times, exactly the same, and then many times with single variables. From “exact” replications, one will discover the natural variation caused by uncontrolled variables.

  • Mats002

    Same procedure goes on iteration for iteration, massage H into the surface of Ni, that is the idea and it keep looking good. The earliest temp that might start some excess heat is around 600 C depending on which physical point temp is measured at.

    • Mats002

      Question to Brian: how/where is core temp measured in this setup? If temp is measured outside core (which is likely to avoid temp measure failure), do you have some reference to know temp diff between core and temp measure probe?

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        Mats, the temp is measured on the exterior of the reactor. The interior temperature will be much higher. There is likely a huge variation of temperature from the surface of the igniter and the fuel closest to it to the fuel at the reactor walls. I couldn’t come up with any way of getting an accurate calibration on this since you basically have to have the fuel in the reactor to get accurate heat transfer characteristics.

    • pelgrim108

      Question to Brian:
      1. what is TC1 measuring? ( I am guessing bucket water temp)
      2. what caused the 2 kilogram jolt at 03:48? ( I am guessing first bubbles from boiling)
      3. Is the fuel conducting some electrical current from the ignitor?

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        1. Correct, bucket water temp.
        2. The scale occasionally has data dropouts that appear as momentary readings of 10000g. Fortunately they are rare.
        3. Maybe this was the cause of failure? Perhaps as the Li and Al melt they start to conduct a lot of current? Hard to know at this point.

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian are you just incrementing power with manual VARIAC increases? Is your power source skematic available somewhere to look at. When you have a minute, Jim

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian are you just incrementing power with manual VARIAC increases? Is your power source skematic available somewhere to look at. When you have a minute, Jim

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Brian you seem to be getting some nice thermal upset on every power increase that look like LENR activity might be present but the COP measurement method may have a long time constant filtering effect on detecting quick response to power increases. Both Parkhomo & Rossi were successful with TRIAC ( noisy EM environments ); have any comments or feelings on subject? Jim Thought temperature upsets showed things happening LENR wise, but COP seem to be big filter?

  • Ecco

    It looks like the reactor failed/stopped working.

  • Wishful Thinking Energy

    The igniter heating element has failed. I’ll have to do a post-mortem do determine the cause of failure. I’m disappointed I didn’t get at least one COP reading. Well, at least we now know another thing not to try.

    • Mike Henderson

      Perhaps a relatively minor wiring issue? There aren’t many failure modes for a chunk of ceramic. I liked the alternative pass-through potting idea someone posted yesterday.

      Keep up the great work!

    • Sanjeev

      It should not fail at just 450 C.

      • Ged

        Maybe it was the contact with the fuel. But the wires sound a more likely culprit as Mike points out.

        • Sanjeev

          I guess 450C means a much higher inside temp. So yes, the connections can melt.

          • Mike Henderson

            450 °C seems mighty coincidental with this item from the Wikipedia article on solder.

            “Alloys that melt between 180 and 190 °C (360 and 370 °F) are the most commonly used. Soldering performed using alloys with a melting point above 450 °C (840 °F) is called ‘hard soldering’, ‘silver soldering’, or brazing.”

            Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solder

          • Omega Z

            15% SILVER SOLDER starts flowing beyond 1100°F or 600°C.
            Dozen years ago I used to buy that for $6.99 a pound(28 sticks). Now I guess it’s around $50.

  • Wishful Thinking Energy

    The igniter heating element has failed. I’ll have to do a post-mortem do determine the cause of failure. I’m disappointed I didn’t get at least one COP reading. Well, at least we now know another thing not to try.

    • Mike Henderson

      Perhaps a relatively minor wiring issue? There aren’t many failure modes for a chunk of ceramic. I liked the alternative pass-through potting idea someone posted yesterday.

      Keep up the great work!

    • Sanjeev

      It should not fail at just 450 C.

      • Ged

        Maybe it was the contact with the fuel. But the wires sound a more likely culprit as Mike points out.

        • Sanjeev

          I guess 450C means a much higher inside temp. So yes, the connections can melt.

          • Mike Henderson

            450 °C seems mighty coincidental with this item from the Wikipedia article on solder.

            “Alloys that melt between 180 and 190 °C (360 and 370 °F) are the most commonly used. Soldering performed using alloys with a melting point above 450 °C (840 °F) is called ‘hard soldering’, ‘silver soldering’, or brazing.”

            Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solder

          • Omega Z

            15% SILVER SOLDER starts flowing beyond 1100°F or 600°C.
            Dozen years ago I used to buy that for $6.99 a pound(28 sticks). Now I guess it’s around $50.

  • GlowFish

    Are you sure it is the actual heater element? Perhaps some wiring came loose such as the joins with the screw connectors. A quick multimeter check of the ignitor with the wires disconnected would confirm.

  • Wishful Thinking Energy

    Looking at the 5 second data it looks like something shorted at 6:40:31, sample 13426. Over the course of 7 minutes the current jumps from 0.614 Amp to over 2 Amps at 6:47:28, sample 13509. During this period the power increases from to 72 W to 244 W while the input voltage remains constant. Near the end temperature is all over the place. The thermocouple is measuring exterior temperature. Interior temperature will likely be several hundred degrees higher than the exterior.

    I’ll have to wait for the reactor to cool to do the post-mortem and determine if this design is worth a second try.

    • Ged

      Does sound like some sort of runaway electrical event, such as conduction from the molten Al as you speculated below. Aluminum is 59% as electrically conductive as copper, and lithium is about a third of Al, but still within the same order of magnitude conductivity as copper.

      I guess an easy fix is to somehow get a ceramic sleeve to hide the igniter and its wires from the fuel, if the fuel shorting out the wires is the culprit.

    • Gerard McEk

      Brian, did you do an outopsy yet?

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        No, it’ll probably be tomorrow morning before I can get to it unfortunately.

  • Alain Samoun

    9-10 KHz but this will have to be confirmed.
    I think that the melting point of Al2O3 is above 2000C I don’t intend to get so high. Your other questions need development but this thread is to follow Brian test. See you later…

  • Wishful Thinking Energy

    Plot of last moments.

  • Wishful Thinking Energy

    Plot of last moments.

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Interesting & i now know you have tried chopped sine waves etc looking at your past experience. I would like to see a Rossi / Parkhomov TRIAC as your power source. I’m sure there is something there. You need ultra low momentum neutrons to feed the isotope formation process leading to nuclear energy release. Although there is a lot of speculation of where & how the LENR process takes place. Larsen beautifully done slide show makes a lot of sense to me with my nuclear reactor & nuclear engineering & controls career background.

    When you have a minute take a look at Larsen’s slide show for some dream material

    http://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen?utm_source=uploader_profile&utm_medium=ssemail&utm_campaign=upload_digest

    I think there is some EM frequency content there in the Sharpe current pulses that make ULM neutrons at the metal interfaces that you don’t get with chopped sine waves of amplitude modulation of sine wave power inputs Brian.

    Gerard McEk has even proposed a power supply design to explore the relationship between EM frequencies & LENR in future replications.

    http://disq.us/8n5t0d

    Jim

    I stand in awe at all your attempts & like you, I think you have met her on just maybe many occasions, but the Lady took your fuel elements like just now.

    Thanks for your efforts & just press on please! I want to study your past results as I leave today.

    You should have seen home E-Cat at 200 C & the Hot E-Cat about 600 C & even more so with a better EM source in the power supply. Don’t think you need really high temperatures to start the LENR process.

  • James Andrew Rovnak

    Take a look at this document when you have a minute Brian!

    http://unifiedgravity.com/resources/WO2014189799-PAMPH-330-2.pdf

  • Wishful Thinking Energy

    Getting the reactor open to inspect it proved to be quite difficult. I finally had to crack the alumina tube containing the igniter so that I could inspect it.

    The leads going to the igniter had melted together in a few places but I do not think this was the cause of failure because the wires were not measuring a short. The resistance was over 10K indicating an open circuit.

    The fuel was clumped around the igniter and had melted near the base. I think the base of the igniter is the most likely region of failure. The heating element broke away from the base during inspection. The porcelain igniter base was degraded and showed signs of high heat. I think most likely due to the high heat, corrosion, or possibly even due to the molten fuel a short occurred near the base of the igniter which further exacerbated the problem.

    It may be possible to extend the life of the igniter by encasing the element in a thin alumina tube and potting the base in alumina cement, but considering that the igniter was several hundred C from the desired temperature region when failure occurred I’m not hopeful that this would be a long lasting design. At this point I don’t plan on doing another igniter test.

    • Andreas Moraitis

      From a methodological point of view, your design appears to be more trustworthy than many others that we have seen. So it might be worthwhile trying to overcome the technical problem. But yes, it could be difficult, and it would possibly require multiple tests – therefore I understand your attitude. Thank you anyway for your work, it is highly appreciated!

      • Wishful Thinking Energy

        Whether I choose to continue with this design or with another I’m committed to using water based calorimetry. It is the only way I will trust the results myself.

  • Abd Ul-Rahman Lomax

    I see this design and my reaction is “Uh oh! There we go again!”

    If one has a Parkhomov design, uninsulated, yes, it takes a lot of power to make the thing hot. Parkhomov addressed this by packing his reactor in insulation. He continued to have various problems related to the reactor burning out. The design, with the heating coils wrapped around the reactor alumina tube, at both ends, with the thermocouple in the middle, and with alumina cement over the heating coils, is guaranteed to create very hot coils, with the reactor underneath being cooler, and with the thermocouple being even cooler, as can clearly be seen in the Vasilenko image just before reactor failure.

    Use a tube furnace, and insulate the furnace well. Make the furnace large enough to hold two fuel tubes, with whatever else is put on them. Contact between hot hydrogen and thermocouples is not advisable. It is possible that PtRh thermocouples will survive this environment, but I would not guarantee it.

    Rather, use a Jiang approach to measure heat. If there is a stable insulator (constant heat conductor), and the temperature on both sides of it is measurement, the energy passing through that insulator will be proportional to the temperature difference. This can and should be calibrated with dummy cells with a heater inside, everything else identical.

    So I think of this: The fuel tubes (alumina containing various fuel mixtures) are held end-wise in the center of an alumina tube. Call it Tube 2, the original fuel tube being Tube 1. Tube 2 is open on the ends, so that hydrogen gas, if released, can escape. While a thermocouple could be placed on the outside of Tube 1, I’d leave it out. On the outside of Tube 2 is Thermocouple 2. Tube 2 is held centrally in Tube 3, another alumina tube. Thermocouple 3 is on the outside of Tube 3. There is a single thermocouple inside the tube furnace, though if one wants to verify the uniformity of temperature in the tube furnace, more than one could be used.

    (With experience, some of these thermocouples might be eliminated as unnecessary. Bottom line, we don’t have the experience yet, Thermocouples are cheap compared to the labor involved in running these experiments)

    The furnace thermocouple is used to regulate tube furnace temperature. To reach a study temperature, with no fuel, a known power would be needed. The insulation should be carefully prepared to be reproducible, a constant. If there is major XP, the input power to the tube furnace heater will be reduced to keep temperature constant. That will be an immediate measure of XP, if this happens. However, that’s a slow response.

    If there is burst power, it will show as an increase in T2 vs T3. T3 itself may rise in temperature, being heat-sinked to the oven environment. All this can be calibrated at the range of temperatures used.

    Do not burn out your heaters! If you need more power, use better insulation. If Kanthal is not stable at the temperatures required (Kanthan A-1 should be good up to 1400 C continuous operating *if it is not physically stressed.* What has been happening, I think, is that burying this in alumina cement has been stressing it as the cement cracks.)

    Don’t consider that the first job is “replicating XE.” Rather, the first job is creating a test-setup that can reliably heat fuel to controlled temperatures, and measure any energy release (including chemical energy, and using known chemical mixtures would be one way of calibrating the setup).

    Record the temperature data with fast capture, at least until this is shown to be unnecessary. If there is concern about possible hot spots and thermal runaway, from XE, it is very unlikely that the tube will fail before there is a measurable rise in temperature of T2.

    Heating with a tube furnace should be very uniform, unlike the quite irregular Parkhomov design.

    Some ideas: weigh the fuel tubes with sufficient accuracy to be able to determine if hydrogen has escaped. Enclose the tube furnace in a containment that is gas-tight, and then capture escaping gases and test them for hydrogen.

    The really good idea that Parkhomov had was supplying hydrogen through a measured quantity of Lithal. It is also possible that the lithium-aluminum alloy that will probably wet the nickel in the hot fuel tube is of importance. To determine what is happening, remember the principle of single-variable controls. There can be unexpected differences from variables, and when more than one variable is changed, it becomes difficult to tease out the causes of observed effects. So I’d think of mixtures of nickel, lithal, and lithium-aluminum. One control cell could be *exactly the same as a test cell,” but very leaky, so that the hydrogen leaks out. So the only variable, then, is hydrogen pressure.

    As has been suggested by others, a major cause of tube failure here is very high hydrogen pressure. So use heavier tubes (as well as being prepared for explosion at all times in the experiment, at least above 100 C.) There may still be very high pressure in the tubes after the experiment, so exercise caution even when they are cooled.

    Repeat experiments many times, exactly the same, and then many times with single variables. From “exact” replications, one will discover the natural variation caused by uncontrolled variables.