The Peak Oil Crisis: The Cold Fusion Conference

May 6, 2015 7:50 PM47 comments

In mid-April the 19th International Conference on Cold Fusion (ICCF-19) took place in Padua, Italy and was attended by some 470 scientists, cold fusion bloggers, entrepreneurs, and the merely interested. The first of these conferences was held back in 1990 in the wake of the University of Utah announcement that two of its chemists had discovered a new way to release energy from the atom. The 1990 conference, however, was resoundingly ridiculed by the American Physical Association and was said to be nothing but a gathering for crackpots, pseudo-scientists, and fraudsters. However, over the decades, the conferees continued to gather in cities around the world, with some 100-300 usually in attendance. Many of those who came to the conferences were scientists who had been able to reproduce the “anomalous heat” that the University of Utah researchers had observed prior to their announcement in 1989. Most of the presentations were way down in the scientific weeds and were comprehensible only to those with considerable knowledge of particle physics, so the conferences drew little attention.

In the last couple of years, however, the tide has turned. Although Cold Fusion is still anathema to many in the U.S. and more importantly to the U.S. Department of Energy, scientists in several countries around the world are starting to see that the technology works, that it could be at least a partial solution to many of mankind’s problems, and are starting to talk about developments in the field to their local press. Most, however, continue to be unaware of recent progress in developing this new source of energy or are too wedded to their prejudices to even consider new evidence.

This year the most important development in cold fusion, unless overtaken by a competitive technology, is the acceptance test of the Rossi/Industrial heat, 1 megawatt, cold fusion reactor, which currently is underway at customer factory in the US. The engineer and entrepreneur, Andrea Rossi, who developed the first working commercial application of a cold fusion reactor, did not attend the ICCF-19 conference. However, his CEO Tom Darden of North Carolina based Cherokee Investment Partners and its subsidiary that is developing the cold fusion reactors, Industrial Heat, attended for the first time.

While many were hoping that Darden would give a progress report on Industrial Heat’s acceptance test of its first fusion reactor, they were disappointed. Darden talked only in generalities as to how he became involved with cold fusion, his dedication to the technology as a way of solving the carbon emissions problem, and his interest in financing similar projects. Two or three journalists who attended the conference however, reported being told by a “credible” source, possibly Darden, that the 400-day, 24/7, acceptance test of the one megawatt reactor is going well after several months. Rossi, who is spending full time monitoring the acceptance test, has been saying lately that the reactor has been running in the “self-sustained” mode a good piece of the time which means that it does not require any outside energy to stimulate the heat-producing reaction.

As has been the case for 25 years, mainstream media coverage of the conference was scarce to non-existent. In addition to his formal address to the conference, Darden who seems to be one of the more knowledgeable people around concerning what it going on in the field, gave a lengthy interview to a blogger. In the interview, Darden revealed that he was funding other cold fusion projects, but did not give any details.

During the interview Darden said primarily that he wants to use this technology to stop global warming and not just to make money from a new source of energy; that he invested millions of his own money in Rossi’s technology only after many tests and careful due diligence; and that he is convinced that Rossi’s or a similar technology will have major impact on the world. He notes that a cheap source of clean energy, which is exactly what cold fusion promises to be, is what mankind needs at this juncture.

Another star of the conference this year was the Russian physicist Parkhomov, who successfully reproduced Rossi’s cold fusion reaction earlier this year and has been sharing the details of his experiments with interested parties all over the world. This has made him a folk hero among those who are hard at work attempting to create still more replications of the reaction.

As could be expected many of the presentations were highly technical, and ranged from new ways of making the cold fusion reaction more reliable to aeronautical applications and even mutating radioactive waste into harmless substances. The Russians, with their ongoing Chernobyl problem, are particularly interest in this aspect of the science.

This conference was notable for it may be the last one to be ignored by the mainstream media. Should the Rossi/Industrial Heat year-long trial of a working commercial reactor be successfully completed by the time the next conference comes around, public and government perception of cold fusion could well have changed markedly. A working commercial scale reactor, which is open for public inspection, will be very difficult for skeptics to deny or ignore.

Next year’s conference will be held in Japan with a subsidiary conference in China. India was also a bidder for the honor. After 25 years, cold fusion looks like it is on a roll.


Tom Whipple is a retired government analyst and has been following the peak oil issue for several years.




  • jameswmakepeace

    I wonder what percentage of those attending were real fusion scientists and what percentage were greens, flat-earthers and wacko’s ! There is no such thing as a “free lunch” in physics and it is absolutely certain that nobody will achieve a useable energy bonus from so-called “cold fusion” in the next few lifetimes.
    The saddest part of the fusion story is that the immensely expensive tokamak experiment (ITER), still building in France, is simply a vast income source for a few elite scientists, who already know their system won’t produce energy in useable or reliable quantities, but who keep convincing governments to pump in the money because they are too embarrassed to admit they have backed a dead horse.
    Equally sad is the fact that the only really powerful application of fusion, which definitely did produce vast amounts of energy, came from Lawrence Livermore California. That of course was the H-bomb… but the giant lasers at Livermore are capable today of the experiments to complete the struggle to master controlled fusion as a safe, clean and reliable energy source for the truly long term… at least they would be if the Washington weapons wonks hadn’t side-lined the project in favour of military work.
    Laser fusion has come closer to success than any other approach so far, but time is running out as the fossil fuels are burned, the environment is increasingly damaged and the energy alternatives steadily diminish for a human population which is now growing completely beyond control. How sad that a species which supposedly is the most intelligent ever evolved on this planet should finally be responsible for its ruin, when we could so easily have given ourselves and our world a huge lease of life in which to become truly civilised and perhaps conquer other worlds in this immense universe which lies waiting !
    Europe and other countries had laser fusion projects too, but no European government has the self-honesty or the drive to make it happen. The European laser fusion project is now unfunded and forgotten. All the best people have already moved on after realising they were wasting their time working towards such a goal while fools and Philistines hold the levers of power.
    What a sad tale for us all !

    • GordonDocherty

      If you want two positively charged squash balls to collide do you:

      a. whack them into a squash court and hope they bounce around enough to hit
      b. roll them into either end of a tunnel with a negative charge at its central point.

      a. is “fusion” by the hot method
      b. is LENR

      So, OK, it’s not quite as simple as that, but there is no free lunch either in LENR, just the use of constraints (such as localized very deep potential wells and suitable THz-range phononic vibrations using wave superposition – three phase AC with superimposed waves is a typical ingredient of current LENR systems) on much smaller numbers of atoms. After all, when we want to cut something, we don’t get a massive steam hammer and smash it up, we simply use scissors or a scalpel… just as well, as surgery done the way the “hot” method is being attempted would be very messy indeed… Brute force, in other words, is seldom the best way to get things done.

    • No need to wonder if you have the ability to find out for yourself, the details are all available freely on ICCF-19 website. Information is at your fingertips and if you can’t use it you go in the category of flat-earthers straight !
      I hope you are not one of them and your remark about wackos being present in ICCF is just your attempt to show your “superior knowledge”, of course, cold fusion, as the TV says is nothing but a pseudoscience. No one need use their own brain, TV is always right !
      If you include the reputed scientists from all over the world, industrialists, and eminent personalities like Darden, Carl Page, Lowell Wood, Airbus team and many more who attended the conference, in the class of wackos, then one must question your intelligence and intention. No offense , but many people like yourself are uninformed on this important matter (or at worst, believe the disinformation being spread by corrupt media), so I’d recommend educating yourself on the matter first. The LENR knowledge base on E-Cat world is a good starting point.

      • Not so much whackoes as deluded and gullible people. Rossi is an obvious crook and a convicted felon. The possibility that the pile of junk he has been showing off is actually cold fusion is vanishingly small.

        • Patrick Ellul

          So you still think that the customer running Rossi’s 1MW plant for the past 5 months is not true even though people claim to have seen it?

          • +Yes, go look on Ecatworld. they have found the plant it’s in florida in a warehouse not hooked up to anything. Of course it’s an amiturish attempt to fool some very easily fooled people.Looks like it worked. Lets see Rossi explain this.( Lucy, you got some splaining to do!!)

          • Patrick Ellul

            So Darden and co are all duped through the nose? They have never visited the plant in action at the client site? Is that what you still think?

          • When nuclear regulatory inspectors visited IH, they were shown an empty building as Rossi’s “factory”. The financial officer of Cherokee Group had no idea who Rossi was.

            I have no idea what Darden knows or does but for sure, he didn’t say a single tangible thing at ICCF19.

          • Patrick Ellul

            Darden must believe in Cold Fusion since he made such a long passioned speech to a big crowd of Rossi like people at the Cold Fusion Conference. So again, you think that Darden is stupid enough to not visit his own customer and have a look at the 1MW plant in action in person.

          • So basically you’re saying you didn’t understand what the post on Ecatworld was showing. That was an older picture of the plant being assembled. Nobody has ‘found the plant’ in its current location.

          • People also claim to have seen my pink, invisible, flying unicorns (PIFU™).

            Which people, Patrick? What customer? Names and interviews please.

          • Patrick Ellul

            Read Darden’s passioned speech about Cold Fusion research. We can only conclude, that based on your views, Darden has been fooled by Rossi, that he hasn’t even bothered to go and check out the 1MW plant in action or even talk to the customer who has it. Speech transcript here:

    • taser_this

      As an attendee of the ICCF-19 conference, I can assure you the characterization you put forth is wholly inaccurate, and grossly misinformed.

      Also, the negative view of Cold Fusion/LENR that you proffer is in direct contradiction of what a growing number in science, business and policy have since overcome. While you are in the majority, it is on the wrong side of history.

      Tom Whipple presents a very accurate and attuned summary of where LENR stands and of the conference. He more likely than not correct that this was the last ICCF conference that shall be ignored by mainstream media and the scientific and political establishment.

      • Tom Whipple is gullible. I explained to him via various posts of his, that Rossi’s claims are unsupported and his “evidence” is faulty. He refuses to consider this. His summary is neither accurate nor likely.

        LENR stands uproven and Rossi stands a confirmed criminal who is trying a new scam. By the way, what ever happened to Defkalion? We had the same discussion about them for several years!

        • I remember when Defkalion invited you, MaryYugo, to evaluate their equipment.

          I remember how you declined their offer, chickened out, and resorted to what you do best, spreading drivel on the internet.

          Cheers !

          • Obviously I was right because Defkalion has since completely disappeared. Where are they and what are they doing now, Gerrit?

            For those not familiar with the episode Gerrit mentions, that total liar, Hadjichristos claimed that he would allow me to test Defkalion’s reactor. It was simply a ploy. He never intended to allow a test. I sent him two colleagues — one a distinguished professor of physics and the other a well trained enthusiast in alternative power sources, Henning Dekant. Hadjichristos evaded meeting with either one although both were available near Defkalion’s Canadian office. Of course, all of Defkalion’s offices are closed now — exactly what one would expect of a successful developer of a cold fusion reactor, right Gerrit?

            I don’t spread drivel. I tried to bring common sense to all the gullible people who thought Defkalion was anything other than lying thieves and a second rate copy of Rossi’s obvious scam.

    • Check out
      I think you are wrong, and you maybe be paid by big oil to make waves.
      It is a lot easier to pay a sceptic to make waves then to pay all the scientists that believe in LENR to make false claims. Cold Fusion always worked from day one. The proper conditions were not in place for the experiment to work for everyone in 1989…

      • jameswmakepeace

        Neil you are entitled to your view but I can assure you I do not work for “Big Oil” to “make waves”. In fact I am extremely wary of “Big Oil” as a cynical profit driven monster which is happy to ruin our planet, just so long as the dollars keep rolling smoothly in. I have worked in fusion for the past few years and I absolutely know there is (as I said) no such thing as a free lunch in physics”. So-called “cold fusion” can never possibly become seriously useful in meeting the energy challenge. The ratio of energy in to energy out in other fusion reactions is so challenging that nature could never leave such a simplistic “back door” wide open. Had she done so, it would have been exploited long ago.

    • Steven Irizarry

      fucking faggot

  • As an attendee of that conference, i can assure you that there weren’t any “greens, flat-earthers and wacko’s”: Bill Gates technology advisor, Airbus, some of the automotive industry players and lots of others that weren’t ready to tell who they are working for.

    Concerning Hot-fusion we are not going to see any working reactor for a very long time (never in my opinion). As for Cold Fusion, i’m very confident that the revolution will come to us in a short period of time (2-5years max).

    Concerning “laser fusion” there was some interesting papers about us of laser for cold fusion presented during the conference by very capabale “wacko’s”, some that are not blatting about conquering the universe or calling others “fools”, and curious enough to have a look at the numerous experiences that proves cold fusion to be real.

    • Bill Gate’s technical advisor? Who was that? As for the cold fusion revolution, it’s been coming since 1989 and it’s no closer to fruition now than it was before 1989. What it seems to have done is spawned a whole bunch of wishful and incompetent people who see a phenomenon where the evidence suggests none.

      • His name is Lowell Wood. Look him up. You might learn something.

        Your problem (well, one of them anyway) is that you equate Rossi with the field of Cold Fusion/LENR. For whatever reason you spend copious amounts of time and energy popping up all over the place trying to discredit Rossi, as if by discrediting him you discredit the entire field. But you ignore most of the research and advances that have taken place in the field, which have nothing whatsoever to do with Rossi. No matter, trolls like you will soon retreat back into your caves to eat crow.

        • Wrong again, Josh. I never said much about the “entire field” of LENR, only about high power claims which are easy to test and are NEVER properly tested. All those I looked at are either obvious crookery or simply poorly documented and tested. That includes Rossi and Defkalion (obvious crooks) and the poorly documented and probably false claims of Brillouin, Miley, Swartz, etc. etc. etc. And then there is Nanospire whose claims of high radiation exposure are simply nutcase.

          I have no idea about low power claims. I don’t care much about it. It does seem to be fanciful thinking and measurement error. Nobody seems to take proper care to do good calorimetry. And the papers are almost always hard to read and badly illustrated so I don’t bother.

          I will see what I can find out about Lowell Wood. Let me know when Gates invests in high power LENR, OK? If it’s real, why would he not? And soon?

        • According to Mats Lewan who spoke to him, Wood was at ICCF on his own and not for Bill Gates. Mats also described him as very quiet.

          • What do you mean ‘according to Mats Lewan?’ Guess where Mats got his information from? Lowell Wood. So it was Lowell Wood who said he was there on his own. But he definitely wasn’t on his own a few months earlier when he visited the cold fusion lab at ENEA with Gates. So maybe we should take Wood’s statement with a grain of salt.

          • Josh, you sound confused. I have no idea what you’re going on about. Let me know when Mr. Gates or his foundation makes an investment in Rossi. I hope they consult me first. Billionaire Dick Smith did (along with other people he talked to) when he contemplated a million dollar investment in Defkalion a couple of years ago. Fortunately for him, he took my advice and that of others and did not give them any money.

            Meanwhile, Jed Rothwell provided some equipment or service to Defkalion to the tune of $2000 and they still owe it to him about which he complains on Vortex from time to time.

          • Patrick Ellul

            Bill Gates Foundation did invest in cold fusion. not with Rossi. But with ENEA. Fact.

          • Of course not with Rossi. Rossi is a crook. And we know Gates’ Foundation invested with ENEA how?

          • Patrick Ellul

            If you can read Italian, which I can, see this: which says that Bill Gates’ foundation will finance some ENEA projects regarding cold fusion.

          • I don’t remember that, and Bill gates said he was working independently on that subject, not via gates foundation.

            Anyway this is a details.

            don’t imagine that Bill gates let his image in ENEA without long discussion.

            Mary you can add also the chief scientist of Airbus Group, JF Geneste who supported emerging LENR industry in front of an audience…



            dear mary, please admit LENr is real, that whoever is Rossi, his device is working, that LENr industry is interesting corps and tycoon since 25 years, despite initial difficulties and mindguard attacks…

            please give us vacation.

  • Among the people present there was the usual scientists, showing usual results, that are fantastic and ignored… Nothing new.

    However there was many younger people, some young scientists, some engineers, some small and big investors…

    The lack of media coverage, despite presence of Carl Page, Tom Darden, of Ukrainian and Russian scientists, of LENR-Cities which claim support of Airbus Chief Scientists, the announce of Tohoku LENR lab, evidence of technology able to clean Fukushima salted water, is shocking…
    It least they should have insulted the participant as some do on blogs…
    Anyway the good news is I know why they just go silent (even Mats was not allowed to go there professionally), it is because they know LENR is real, so they cannot criticize without fear of backdraft… they cannot however support because of the existing groupthink and it’s mindguards…
    so, don’t see, don’t hear, don’t talk. they wait for the first to talk.

  • KindWizard

    Cold Fusion’s motto: “It doesn’t work either, but it’s cheap.”

  • Google *The Fusion Revolution* for an overview of the latest developments in Low Energy Nuclear Reaction (LENR). LENR has been proven to work in laboratories in Europe, Asia, Canada, and the USA. We know the LENR effect is real. The engineering problem is in designing a cost effective product that can be sold in the marketplace. Andrea Rossi claims to have a LENR reactor working right now in a 400 day Beta test in a factory in the USA producing heat for an industrial process. Other companies claim to be close to producing marketable products. Obstacles include certification issues, patent protection, and the usual reliability problems for any new technology. The first LCD and plasma televisions looked terrible and were very expensive. Now you can buy an excellent 1080P LED-LCD television for just $400. I think we have enough information and proof to suggest that LENR will be a major energy producing source in this century. How long it will take to actually get products into stores is unknown, but there is reason to be optimistic that it may happen relatively soon, perhaps even as early as 2016 or 2017.

    • On ECW they’ve found the so called 1Mw plant in Florida and of course it’s not hooked up to anything, it’s embarrassing that adults would be fooled by such an obvious scam, they not only are proud to be fools , they are an evil influence in the world as real solutions to clean energy are obscured by the bullsht.

      • The one megawatt plant is producing heat for an industrial process. You can make any claim you wish, but E-Cat World does not back up your criticism.

        • The only way you “know” that, Christopher, is from Rossi’s blog and some enthusiast in Italy, also from a blog. There is no evidence Rossi has or ever had a megawatt “plant,” a real customer, a working ecat, the ability to make cheap isotopes, a robotic plant, a military customer, or any of the other wonders claimed on E-Cat World without a shred of credible evidence.

          Or perhaps you can tell us where this wondrous plant is and who owns it? Or what happened to the plant Rossi said he sold to the US Military almost three years ago?

          • Rossi has credibility because of his ground breaking work that has been verified by many others, and which is now in the hands of Industrial Heat LLC. You, by contrast, continue to make silly statements in an attempt to deny the obvious.

  • Some of those involved moved their savings accounts from banks to sinkholes so that tells you how great the judgment is with the fanatics involved. They are filling rapidly with sea water as we speak.

  • Haniya Ahmad

    it does not require any outside energy to stimulate the heat-producing reaction. islam quotes
    on life

  • Where did this maryyugo character come from? Now she is reaching the point of being just plain silly.

    • Ah, but I don’t CLAIM to be an authority on anything, so you can stop looking. I collect and state facts and obvious conclusions. As it happens, I do know about calorimetry and power and energy measurements but you don’t need to believe that to understand what I write.

      Defkalion was recognized and claimed to be “indipendent” of Rossi, LOL. They tried to get a million dollar investment from Dick Smith, the Australian billionaire. I helped him specify testing which would have revealed their fraud and which they declined to have done. They then got enough funding to build a few silly devices which obviously did not work as claimed but in the meantime, they pulled the wool over the eyes of several NASA folks who should have known better. Peter Gluck was also soundly bamboozled by Hadjichristos of Defkalion.

      Mercifully, their funding apparently dried up and they have not been heard from for now going on at least six months. RIP Defkalion. Can Rossi be very far behind?

      • Can’t imagine why you equate Rossi with Defkalion. Rossi warned us about Defkalion years ago. Meanwhile he has allowed his ecat to be tested by some very serious engineers and scientists.

        Beyond all that, a very serious company has invested in the Rossi program. Obviously, they are convinced of the potential and are funding a commercial installation. I for one am convinced there is much to be accomplished here. Potentially the energy distribution will never be the same once this technology is in place. Time will tell maryyugo! !

        • I equate Rossi with Defkalion because both are extremely obvious scams of the same type.

          Those serious engineers and scientists you refer to, made every mistake possible, were called on those mistakes, and failed woefully to correct them. The most glaring and dumbest is that they NEVER ONCE used a proper calibration method for the full operating temperature range of the device. Heck, for all the steam temperature ecat demonstrations, NO CALIBRATION at all was used. That there was no attempt to deceive was ASSUMED. That is exactly what con men want.

          Nobody is funding any commercial installation. If you think someone is, who is it and where is it and how can we check that it’s real?

          Time will tell? Time has already told:

          2007 Rossi says he heated an entire factory by replacing it’s steam boiler with an ecat boiler

          2011 Levi tests a steam temp ecat and gets yp to 135kW peak and appx 20kW steady state for hours from a baseball sized device with a “COP” (output power divided by input power) of 10 to 20.

          2012 Rossi demonstrates a variety of ecats which make around 10 -15kW, are larger, and have a COP of 6. Rossi claims that the COP of 6 is a throttle down for safety.

          2015 The Swedish scientists results including the so-called Lugano experiment yields a COP of 2-3 and a power out of around 2.5kW. Actually, Thomas Clarke analyzes these results, does the math and publishes a document showing that the most probable COP is 1.0 or less and that the Swedish scientists used a wrong number for the emissivity of the hot cat.

          So here is progress, Rossi style: ever diminishing claims for COP and power. Wonderful, isn’t it? In 8 years. And time will tell? What do you think it will tell and why do you think it, Delverman?

          • I refer to your own words “Ah, but I don’t CLAIM to be an authority on anything”, yet here you go making all these preposterous claims against Rossi and all the men of science who have tested his device.

            Yes, Rossi is making serious progress with an entirely new energy source- It took years for skeptics of your ilk to accept that the Wright brothers were indeed correct about flight.

          • You’re really comparing Rossi, a convicted felon who never achieved anything, with the Wright Brothers? The Wright Brothers had an airplane which flew. It took a while to get widespread acceptance because there was no internet.

            Rossi has a silly collection of leaky boxes, stashed inside a container, in an UNKNOWN place and supposedly funded by an UNKNOWN customer. The Men of Science you speak of are UNKNOWN and unaccomplished professors who did the supposed tests on their own and not with their universities. The only exception to unknown is Essen and he is probably past his “best by” date. As for Levi, his main feats of science involve brewing coffee! I kid you not. Check his bibliography at the UniBo web site.

            Like other believers in Rossi’s “religion,” Delverman, you failed to respond to a single issue I raised — so I ask you: any idea why none of those brilliant scientists ever asked Rossi permission to calibrate the measurement systems for electrical power and power out over the full operating temperature range of the claimed ecat? And why they used error prone indirect methods (thermal cameras) to measure the reactor’s temperature when direct methods (thermocouples and RTD’s) were available? Do you even know what it means to make such measurements?

          • Like you I don’t claim to be an an authority Maryyugo- but I’ve been know to have common sense. In this case common sense tells us that Rossi has something new and significant and obviously complex with his invention. If he can prove his theories within 10 years it would be a remarkable accomplishment considering the potential impact on everyone’s life.

            Don’t forget, he(Rossi) is only funded with a few million vs the billions spent on conventional technology- obviously existing energy companies(oil, nuclear, etc.) would spend many more billions to keep Rossi and his invention in doubt. It’s reasonable to assume that his harshest critics may be funded by them.

  • lugano report is dubious on the calorimetry.
    however the measurement made in ferrara are solid (I eliminate the conspiracy theories that are impossible given the freedom granted to physicist).
    the isotopic measurement are solid and surprising (which make fraud again incoherent). moreover countrary to the legend spread by some conspiracy theorist, Rossi did not touch the samples, and only watched that no manipulation error was done (There is a clear interview of Bo Hoistad).

    this situation is complex, and the errorof calibration by the physicist team, that cannot be blamed to industrial heat, did not help. You need to analyse all the avaliable evidence around E-cat, from ferrara to lugano, and build hypothesis that are coherent.

    the conspiracy theory (hidden wires, stage magic, tampered samples) are not possible given the independence of the tests, freedom to install instruments, reactor let alon with scientists for hours or days…

    the general error theory, COP=1, is incoherent too with Ferrara calorimetry and Lugano isotopic analysis.

    finally that something nuclear work, question is how efficiently, is the only possibility.

    this method demand some effort that few analyst do. that is the general problem of cold fusion science since the beginning.

    analysing data need effort and with enough bias, fallacies and dishonesty you can reject all evidence one by one, and concluding something that is absurd compared to the whole dataset.

    after all it took many years for Wright plane to be accepted as real, while it was flying in public place with certified witness since long.

    nothing new.

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