This week’s revelations by Andrea Rossi about Leonardo Corporation’s business plan and technical strategy has been one of the most surprising things I have learned since I started following the progress of Rossi’s E-Cat.
I was not terribly surprised to learn that Rossi was planning to sell heat, rather than plants, because this is something he has talked about on and off over the years. The thing that took me off guard was the fact that in Rossi’s plan the E-Cat plants are to be controlled directly from Leonardo Corp’s headquarters. I just hadn’t even considered that as a possibility.
However, thinking about it, there are plenty of remote control application in the world, and knowing Rossi’s business philosophy, business goals and his desire for protection and control of his IP, this strategy – assuming it can work technologically – fits with his outlook.
There has been a lot of discussion on the implications of this strategy, and I have been thinking about it quite a bit, and some of my thoughts are outlined below.
Benefits for Leonardo:
- The control secrets are off-site, providing more IP protection and confidence to implement E-Cat technology into the world.
- Leonardo is able to directly monitor the performance of the E-Cat plants at multiple plants from one location, helpful for data collection and troubleshooting especially in the early days of sales and installations
Risks for Leonardo
- In addition to providing an unprecedented energy source, the business plan is unusual. Industries may be suspicious about the secrecy and be wary of participating.
- There will be significant costs required to set up, maintain and protect the telecommunications systems involved.
- Using the internet to deliver the control signals to the e-cats adds another layer of complexity to the E-Cat’s operations. Internet connectivity may be problematic at times and Leonardo would likely be a target for hackers trying to steal secrets, or trying to disrupt their operations.
- The more plants that are installed, the more complex the remote control and monitoring becomes. If Leonardo is knocked offline completely, then E-Cat plants in all locations will cease to work, affecting customers financially and operationally, and Leonardo loses revenues until resolved.
Benefits for Customers
- Cost savings on heat for their industrial processes.
- Reduction in carbon emissions.
- No need for upfront investment in an unknown technology.
- If it doesn’t work, or if does not work well, no loss to the customer. No need for training staff to run the E-Cat operations.
Risks for Customers
- With E-Cat power supply dependent on internet connectivity, cost savings are dependent upon stable internet communications with Leonardo. If internet connectivity is unreliable, E-Cat benefits will be reduced.
- There will be a need to continue to provide and maintain a backup energy source.
- Entering into a 5-year contract could lock in higher costs if E-Cat costs go down as the technology improves over time.
My interest in the E-Cat and LENR in general has always been because of the practical benefits it can potentially provide. I think it is a good sign that Andrea Rossi is now working on an implementation plan, because I think the sooner that LENR can be put to work in the real world, the better. Whether Rossi’s plan will be successful still remains to be seen. Even he has stated that it may not be the long term strategy:
Dr Andrea Rossi:
Your strategy to maintain the control system centralized in your HQ is one of the most genial solution you could think about.
It has resolved the reverse engineering issue and allows us to maintain a direct observation of the behavior of all our Ecats. Surely this will be our strategy for the first “pioneers” years. Eventually, we will see.