UPDATE: Thanks to artefact for finding this interesting comment made by Jack Cole on his LENR-Cold Fusion website (see comment on March 28th here: http://www.lenr-coldfusion.com/2015/03/26/promising-results-parkhomov-experiment/)
“The work has been ongoing. I have had some good results, but did not want to report them until I was certain. I have been using LAH instead of alternative hydrogen sources recently. I had a recent experiment that demonstrated the same pattern as Parkhomov’s results. Decreasing power maintained a higher temperature at 1130 to 1200C. Basically, it took ~77W to maintain 1000C, but only 55-60 to maintain 1130C. Also, took ~77W to maintain 1200C (the same as 1000C). The alumina tube melted through where the fuel was in the tube. Anyway, I need to be able to repeat this to be fully convinced. My alumina tube quality is a problem, which I think will reduce the reproducibility.”
Jack Cole of LENR-Coldfusion.com website, who has been involved in experimenting with Parkhomov-style LENR reactors, has reported today on the vortex-l mailing list that in an experiment he carried out yesterday, a reactor made of 95 per cent alumina went into a meltdown state. Picture is below:http://www.lenr-coldfusion.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/IMG_20150317_084823_361.jpg
The furnace sealant which I coated it [the reactor] with completely melted and agglomerated to the bottom of the cell (also appears to be mixed with melted alumina) . . . The tube was purchased from China and is purportedly 95% pure. It was supposed to have a continuous operating temperature of 1500C.[. . .]
The input power was ~260W. I don’t know what the R value of the insulation is. I had the cell surrounded by high purity alumina powder and covered with a thin sheet of ceramic insulation. I used standard 120V AC 60hz with a triac type dimmer switch (chops the waves starting at V=0). I’ll have to check with the manufacturer to see what the remaining 5% of the tube is. The heating element was Kanthal A1. It’s strange that the heating element was able to completely melt at points. In the past, it has always failed before melting.
I was using INCO type 255 nickel, TiH2, LiOh, KOH, aluminum powder, and Fe2O3. Good idea on the small amount of fuel which should cause some localized melting.
He said that this was the first time he had use a triac to control the input current, and the thermocouple he was using failed during the experiment, so he does not have any temperature measurements.
He later broke open the reactor and found that the fuel had formed into a solid stick (see picture below)
He said in examining the inside of the tube, discoloration and a metal coating make it hard to determine if there was melting on the inside of the tube, but he thinks that might be possible (see pictures at these links: http://www.lenr-coldfusion.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/meltedtubeinner.png ; http://www.lenr-coldfusion.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/melted2.png
Many thanks to Jack for this report — it’s very interesting to see what happens in the various experiments people are carrying out, and to see the heads of the LENR community put together to try and determine what might have happened here. It might be significant that is was not high purity alumina (95%) — the composition of the other 5% might have made a difference here.
Jack says he plans to do a control run an experiment of a similar reactor without fuel inside to see if he gets the same results. That should be quite telling. If the same result occurs, then we might be looking at something other the LENR as the cause of the meltdown.