This Year's Nobel Week Topic — Exploring the Future of Energy

Nobel Media has announced the topic to be discussed at this year’s Nobel Week Dialogue — a day of lectures and panel discussions which will be held in Gothenburg, Sweden on December 9th. From the announcement on the Nobel web site:

The Nobel Week Dialogue is a cross-disciplinary meeting bringing together a unique constellation of Nobel Laureates, world-leading scientists, policy makers and thought leaders to discuss global issues that affect us all. A forum for scientists and non-scientists alike, the objective of the meeting is to deepen the dialogue between the scientific community and the rest of society around issues that concern us all. The Nobel Week Dialogue is free to attend and accessible to a worldwide audience online.

The choice of Energy as the topic for the 2013 meeting is partly inspired by three anniversaries occurring this year, signifying landmarks in the history of aspects of the science underpinning energy research. This year we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 1913 publication of Niels Bohr’s Model of the Atom, which is often described as perhaps the single most important event in the development of quantum physics, a field at the centre of our understanding of many processes, including solar energy capture. The same year, 1913, also saw the award of the Nobel Prize in Physics to Heike Kammerlingh Onnes for the liquification of Helium-3 and the discovery of superconductivity, a phenomenon which, once adequately harnessed, could hold great potential for more efficient energy transport and storage. And lastly 2013 marks the 75th anniversary of the award of the 1938 Nobel Prize in Physics to Enrico Fermi for his work on nuclear reactions, work which went on to underpin the development of nuclear power. The connections between such fundamental scientific discoveries as these and the prospects for society’s production and use of energy lie at the very heart of the meeting, and will form some of the strands running throughout the day’s discussions.

It sounds like it could be an interesting event — especially so because the events of the day are focusing on involving dialogue between meeting participants both in person and online: “The whole day will be streamed live over the internet, and Dialogue lies at the heart of each meeting: dialogue between the featured panelists, between the panelists and the audience and between members of the audience. So audiences, both those present and those following the proceedings online, will be invited to engage in the conversations throughout.”

Naturally I hope that some of the breakthroughs in LENR that we have been discussing here will be brought up at the meeting — but I feel it will take some big news between now and then for the distinguished guests to take the topic seriously. Unfortunately, cold fusion still seems to have a certain stigma attached to it, although there are signs that may be changing somewhat. If Rossi’s partner is revealed before this event, I think there could be a good chance that the E-Cat will be part of the conversation there.