Korean Fusion Project Announces World Record Operation for a Fusion Reactor

An article on the Phys.org site reports that the South Korean fusion project The Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR) has broken a world record for the operation of a fusion reactor.

https://phys.org/news/2020-12-korean-artificial-sun-world-sec-long.html

KSTAR announced that it had been able to operate their Tokama for 20 seconds at temperatures of over 100 million degrees. Until now, no fusion reactor of this kind has been able to sustain such temperatures beyond 10 seconds.

Director of KSTAR Si-Woo Yoon made this comment on the achievement:

“The technologies required for long operations of 100 million- plasma are the key to the realization of fusion energy, and the KSTAR’s success in maintaining the high-temperature plasma for 20 seconds will be an important turning point in the race for securing the technologies for the long high-performance plasma operation, a critical component of a commercial nuclear fusion reactor in the future.”

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PDF of Revised Rossi Paper “E-Cat SK and long-range particle interactions”

There have been a number of people reporting difficulty in accessing the updated version of Andrea Rossi’s paper “E-Cat SK and long-range particle interactions” from the ResearchGate page where it has been posted.

I was able to download a version myself, so I am uploading it here, hopefully it will not cause any problems for people.

ECatSK_and_lrpi2.1

https://e-catworld.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/ECatSK_and_lrpi2.1.pdf

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‘Major Revision’ Published of Andrea Rossi’s Paper “E-Cat SK and Long Range Particle Interactions”

Thanks to Guest for sharing about the following:

Andrea Rossi’s Paper E-Cat SK and long-range particle interactions has been updated: The Premise Reads: “This is a major revision made in December 24 2020 of the original pre-print”

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/330601653_E-Cat_SK_and_long-range_particle_interactions/link/5fe4e21792851c13feb911cd/download
Here is the Abstract of the revised paper:

Some theoretical frameworks that explore the possible formation of dense exotic
electron clusters in the E-Cat SK are presented. Some considerations on the probable role of Casimir, Aharonov-Bohm, and collective effects in the formation of such structures are proposed. A relativistic interaction Lagrangian, based on a pure electromagnetic electron model, that suggests the possible existence of very low entropy charge aggregates and that highlights the primary role of the electromagnetic potentials in these clusters is presented. The formation of these cluster may be associated to a localized Vacuum polarization generated by a rapid radial charge displacement. The
formation of these dense electron clusters are introduced as a probable precursor for
the formation of proton-electron aggregates at pico-metric scale, stressing the importance of evaluating the plausibility of special electron-nucleon interactions, as already suggested in [22]. An observed isotopic dependence of a particular spectral line in the visible range of E-Cat plasma spectrum seems to confirm the presence of a specific proton-electron interaction at electron Compton wavelength scale.

For comparison, this is the abstract of the original paper that was published in January 2019:

Some theoretical frameworks that explore the possible formation of dense exotic electron clusters in E-Cat SK are presented. Some considerations on the probable role of Casimir, Aharonov-Bohm and vacuum polarization eects in the formation of such structures are proposed. Dense electron clusters are introduced as a probable precursor for the formation of proton-electron aggregates at pico-metric scale, stressing the importance of evaluating the plausibility of special electron-nucleon interactions, as already suggested in [14]. An observed isotopic dependence of a particular spectral line in the visible range of E-Cat plasma spectrum seems to confirm the presence of a specific proton-electron interaction at electron Compton wavelength scale.

It will take some time and work to compare both versions of the paper, and to understand the new information.

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Rossi: 100 E-Cat SKL Units Have Been Combined

Some questions on the Journal of Nuclear Physics today give an indication of some of the work that Andrea Rossi and his team are involved in at the moment.

E. Hergen
December 21, 2020 at 7:41 AM
Dear Mr. Rossi,

Does the test agency test a protopype of an industrial reactor?
What is the power of this reactor for testing?

Andrea Rossi
December 21, 2020 at 9:41 AM
E.Hergen:
We are dealing with an industrial assembly of modules, changing power.
Warm Regards,
A.R

E. Hergen
December 21, 2020 at 1:48 PM
Dear Mr. Rossi,
thank you for your answer. One follow up question:
What is the maximum number of modules you combined together up to now?

Andrea Rossi
December 21, 2020 at 6:38 PM
E.Hergen:
100
Warm Regards,
A.R.

This is apparently the industrial plant that Rossi and his team is currently building, which he has stated would be presented at the public demonstration next year. I suppose it could be the case that only part of the plant has been built so far, and the final version would be more than 100 SKLs.

Rick 57 followed up with a question about the controller for this plant:

Rick 57
December 22, 2020 at 5:56 AM
Dear Andrea,

related to your recent answer to Hergen, are you using just a single controller for all or each E-Cat has its own ?

Andrea Rossi
December 22, 2020 at 7:21 AM
Rick 57:
We have a single controller,
Warm Regards,
A.R.

And I posted my own follow-up:

Frank Acland
December 22, 2020 at 3:54 AM
Dear Andrea,

Interesting to learn you have combined 100 modules together so far. In your testing, has this combination of E-Cat SKLs worked as you have hoped?

Andrea Rossi
December 22, 2020 at 7:22 AM
Frank Acland:
Almost,
Merry Christmas to you and your family,
A.R.

It does sound like a lot of progress has been made of late. They must feel quite confident about the quality and operation of individual SKLs if they are now combining multiple units The fact that they can actually build 100 SKLs is quite impressive and indicates that they have a good manufacturing setup in place. It’s going to be interesting to eventually see the final product.

Rossi: 100 E-Cat SKL Units Have Been Combined

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Q&As Regarding E-Cat SKL Certification

Here is an interesting set of questions and answers posted today on the Journal of Nuclear Physics dealing with the certification process for the E-Cat SKL.

Mark U
December 20, 2020 at 8:49 PM
Dear Andrea,

Greetings from Canada!
I have some nosy questions for you about the ongoing Ecat SKL certification, if your are able to answer:

1) Does the certification agency still possess an Ecat SKL on their own premises for testing?
2) How often do they come to visit your premises, or you theirs?
3) How often are you in communication with them via video conference or phone?
4) What are the issues most discussed?
5) Have they yet asked for particular changes in order to conform to certification standard?
6) Are you as confident as ever that the Ecat SKL will be successfully certified, probably by Spring 2021?
7) Will you continue to work with the same agency – since they are already familiar with the Ecat – as the Ecat undergoes minor changes before it is ready for mass manufacturing for industrial use?
8) Is the same agency likely to do the certification for a later domestic version?

Andrea Rossi
December 21, 2020 at 5:26 AM
Mark U:
1- No, the test is made in our premises
2- many times
3- many times
4- safety
5- yes
6- yes
7- maybe
8- maybe
A blessed Christmas also to you and your family,
Warm Regards,
A.R.

It looks like the certification going on now is regards to safety. Rossi has state that they are building an industrial plant, so that would be necessary to obtain before putting them on the market. I would assume both parties are under NDA regarding this process at the moment, so all we have to go on are Rossi’s own comments. It’s not surprising to me that the E-Cat has not yet been tested outside Leonardo’s premises, as we know how protective Andrea Rossi is of his invention. It is interesting to me that here Rossi seems confident of certification by Spring 2021, we’ll have to see how that plays out.

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Brilliant Light Power Publishes Calorimetry Report Showing Significant Power Gain in SunCell Runs

There is a new report on the Brilliant Light Power  website titled “Water Bath Calorimetry (120420): Report “. The report was written by Mark Nansteel, Ph.D. who is described as a heat transfer expert.

The 22 page report describes two water bath calorimetry tests done on December 4th at BLP headquarters in New Jersey.

The link to the document is here:

Microsoft Word – Report on Water Bath Calorimetry (120420).docx (brilliantlightpower.com)

Dr. Nansteel has written a very thorough report on how the testing was done, and how results were measured. The main conclusions are presented in this graphic, which shows the energy gain in the experiment, and compares it to similar tests carried out in November — showing a significant improvement:

On the Brilliant Light Power website they state that they limited run time to get accurate calorimetry, but that the SunCell is capable of running indefinitely. They also write:

Moreover, with a Brayton cycle turbine addition, the SunCell® gain is sufficient to serve as a stand-alone power source of at least 100 kW thermal with no grid or fuel connection and no CO2 or pollution of any kind.  Over 250 kW and 10-fold gain have been achieved with this design by changing the operational parameters.  We are developing control systems to run at these extreme power density levels without occurring limitations of the cooling system that could lead to damage to the SunCell.

The SAFIRE Plasma Reactor: The Breakdown of a Miracle in Seven Steps

The following has been submitted by an ECW reader.

The SAFIRE Plasma Reactor: The Breakdown of a Miracle in Seven Steps

By: An Addict of Aureon Energy Ltd. and Self Organizing Plasmas

The SAFIRE Project represents a revolutionary energy technology that’s also capable of producing transmutations, remediating nuclear waste, and perhaps much more. Although the verified, repeated results Montgomery Childs, Michael Clarage, and the other members of their core and extended team have produced are astounding, the basic concept of what they are doing is simple. There’s no big mystery about how their technology works. Yes, that’s right. By reviewing their videos, reading their papers, listening to their interviews, studying other papers about self organizing plasmas, and checking out the work of an extended list of other inventors who have built devices utilizing the same phenomena, all the most critical pieces of information become obvious. This essay is an attempt to present the most fundamental pieces of know how in a concise and easy to understand manner.

The Reactor

The SAFIRE Plasma Reactor is a sophisticated engineering marvel connected to an array of sensors and data acquisition equipment. However, the basic design it utilizes to produce a self organizing plasma (man-made ball lighting, complex space charge configuration, macro-EVO) is very straightforward. Two flat circular cathodes of a large surface area are positioned at equal distances on opposite sides of a central spherical anode. This spherical anode can be solid or hollow and either will “work” to produce excess heat and transmutations. A hollow anode can be useful because deionized water can be pumped through the interior for cooling, sensors of various types may be placed inside, and pressurized hydrogen or deuterium can be pumped through the interior resulting in a migration to the exterior surface. However, hollow anodes are not required. Solid anodes work and are cheaper and simpler.

A multitude of materials for the anode will work to produce excess heat, according to Montgomery Childs, the Director of the Safire Project. However, we know that in one of their patents an iron nickel alloy with at least 20% nickel is listed. Further research and an analysis of their published videos indicates that in some cases they are using an alloy composed of at least three elements: Tungsten, Nickel, and Iron. It’s almost certain they’ve tested pure anodes of each of these materials. As we know, Tungsten seems to react very energetically (sometimes vaporizing) when exposed to a self organized plasma. This effect has been witnessed in a variety of exotic energy systems. Logic dictates that a combination of elements that may help produce a balance – producing copious energy while preventing short term destruction of the anode – would be useful.

A few examples of Tungsten Nickel Iron alloys can be found on the following site:

https://www.albmaterials.com/tungsten-nickel-iron-w-ni-fe-high-density-alloy-ball.html

[In one experiment, if I’m interpreting the information from one of their videos correctly, they started with a W-Ni-Fe alloy and the examination of the anode from a third party detected the Tungsten, Nickel, and Iron starting elements and the following many of which are transmutation products if not all of them: Carbon, Barium, Calcium, Titanium, Zinc, Chromium, Sulfur, Chlorine, Calcium, Potassium, Lanthanum, Cerium, Silicon, Tin, etc.]

Personally, I’d guess they’ve also tried various super alloys like the following but this is just a guess.

https://continentalsteel.com/blog/what-is-the-difference-between-hastelloy-and-incoloy/#:~:text=Hastelloy%C2%AE%20(milled%20by%20Haynes,are%20highly%20resistant%20to%20corrosion.

The Gaseous Environment

The SAFIRE Project is able to introduce a number of different gases into their reactor including hydrogen, deuterium, helium, argon, nitrogen, oxygen, and air. By observing their videos closely it’s plain to see they are often using a combination of hydrogen and nitrogen and sometimes a combination of hydrogen, nitrogen, and argon (we know this last combination has been tested due to the notes hanging in Monty Childs garage). Most of the time in the videos it seems as if they are testing various ratios of hydrogen and nitrogen, as notes from his garage indicate that the introduction of nitrogen triggers the production of copious double layers and reduces the input power required. We know they have tested many different ratios of hydrogen and nitrogen from the notes in their hands. From the display of their mass spectrometer it seems that this combination was used during certain experiments that produced surges of excess power that melted anodes.

Although they most probably do not add water intentionally, the screen of their mass spectrometer shows that small but significant quantities of water vapor are in their system. This is likely almost inevitable unless they perform an intensive “bake out” procedure. The importance of the percentage of water vapor in the low pressure (a rough estimate might be between 10 and 20 Torr) plasma environment is unclear. Perhaps they will elaborate on this at some point. Interestingly, it seems that hydrogen and not deuterium is the gas they use most frequently. This represents another aspect of the simplicity of this phenomena: hydrogen of the ordinary isotopic ratio works. Pure deuterium, which is more expensive, is not required.

To provide a specific example, here are the atomic mass units and percentages from their mass spectrometer read out during one of their experiments. You can find many such screens during their videos.

2 (H2) 34.6%

3 (Likely the H3+ ion which is common in DC plasmas) 4.08%

28 (N2) 43.3%

29 (Likely a molecule consisting of two different isotopes of nitrogen 15N – 14N) 11.0%

14 (N) 5.83%

18 (H2O) 1.17%

The result if you add up the percentages above equates to 38.68% hydrogen and 60.13% nitrogen with 1.17% water.

Electrical Input, Double Layers, and Massive Excess Energy

The SAFIRE Reactor utilizes direct current (DC) electricity with very low ripple, meaning that it’s very clean. The cleanliness of the input may or may not be important: for all we know the application of “dirty” or pulsed DC or the application of a secondary signal (AC or DC) over the first may even be useful. Yet simple direct current works. This is great news because there’s no “magic frequency” that’s required. Before we continue, it should be pointed out that the voltage and the current can be independently controlled, and the input power is current restricted. Once a suitable voltage is applied that ignites the plasma and is deemed sufficient for the experiment, the current is increased. As the current is increased various plasma regimes are produced. After moving past the appearance of tufts, growing tufts, and spinning tufts, the beautiful double layers start to form around the anode. These large, expansive double layers are impossible to miss and represent alternating layers of electrons and ions. Importantly, they also act as (or produce) electromagnetic containment fields that eliminates the need for the powerful external electromagnets used in hot fusion experiments. This is yet another feature of this phenomena that proves its simplicity and extreme utility. Because these self organizing structures do the work of producing their own containment fields, the complexity of building a plasma reactor utilizing this technology is reduced by at least an order of magnitude. As Montgomery Childs has stated, paraphrasing, they give the plasma the conditions they think it would like and let it do all the work for them. This is unlike traditional hot fusion systems in which you do all the work, spend billions of dollars, and the plasma gives back little to nothing – barely reaching break even and certainly not proving economically viable.

When you increase the current further, the large nested double layers collapse towards the anode and form one intense double layer with an extremely sharp voltage gradient just off the surface. The result is a brilliantly glowing yellow-orange ball of light producing copious excess energy in a variety of forms of heat, light, electricity, and electromagnetic fields. Most of these emissions will convert rapidly into a “thermal response” producing heat that could be captured to boil water, produce steam, and turn a generator. It’s also during this time period that transmutations in real time are captured with an optical spectrometer and elements are also transmuted on and inside of the anode. As if a miracle had transpired, all of this happens with no hard radiation being detected.

The control of this plasma regime in which the double layers collapse close to the anode producing what looks like a brilliant star is critical. We know that The SAFIRE Project has melted at least one anode and other companies utilizing self organizing plasmas have destroyed a variety of materials. Also, you do not want to move past the negative resistance regime and enter a true arc discharge in which the plasma ball will vanish and the experiment will end. Basically, when any material is sitting within the core of man-made ball lighting or an Exotic Vacuum Object (EVO) it can suffer tremendous stress that can result in melting or even vaporization. Likely, The SAFIRE Project have discovered optimal combinations (of gas pressures, input power, elements in the anode) that can prevent such damage from happening. However, there are other solutions that they may not have tested yet. This includes utilizing a different electrode configuration in which there is no central anode. In this setup there would be a cathode on one end of a tube (perhaps quartz) and an anode on the other end. Existing literature going back many decades explain how in such a setup (if the parameters of the system are correct) a self organizing plasma will start to form on the anode or cathode. As the current is increased, the self organizing plasma will start to slowly move away from the electrode, attached only by a tether. Eventually, when this structure reaches it’s maximum level of self organizing it will detach from the electrode completely. At this stage it is a “free floating fireball.” The benefit of this setup would be that the plasma ball would not be in physical contact with any component of the reactor. This means there would be nothing to destroy. However, this also means that the fuel would be composed of the gases added to the reactor and whatever nano-particles are sputtered off the electrodes. When such a free floating plasma ball has formed, it can be detected both visually and on an oscilloscope due to the ion acoustic oscillations it will produce. If the power is adjusted further, the fireball will actually blink on and off, casting off double layers and rebuilding them only to repeat the process over and over. The author hopes SAFIRE will not only continue testing their current configuration but also the one described above as a potential way of overcoming any material science limitations.

(The author would like to speculate that a “free floating fireball” as described above might be capable of being pushed to a higher level of self organization (thus more excess energy) than one wrapped around a physical anode. In this case, the core of the “free floating fireball” becomes positively charged and is indeed a virtual anode. Also, in such a setup higher pressures might induce the fireball to compress smaller in size resulting in a higher plasma density, which might or might not be favorable.)

The Breakdown of a Miracle

Here’s a concise list of what you need to know about SAFIRE. Please note that there are obviously many standard engineering issues that would need to be sorted out, but the basic effect is not highly complicated. In fact, I’d go so far as to say it’s far more simple than any traditional LENR technology (electrolytic or gas loading) or hot fusion technology.

1) Two large surface area disc shaped copper cathodes. If their distance from each other can be adjusted on the fly that is a plus. The use of copper may not be an absolute requirement. For example, aluminum may work or, if you want to get exotic, a diamond coated, hydrogen doped electrode with a negative electron affinity.

2) A solid or hollow anode of any number of materials including nickel, iron, and tungsten. An alloy with all these elements might be even more useful. Additions of molybdenum and chromium might be interesting as well. Make sure to degrease and clean the surface well because oil and other contaminants could make generating a stable plasma difficult.

3) A low pressure gaseous environment with varying ratios of hydrogen and nitrogen or hydrogen, nitrogen, and argon. A small bit of water from the atmosphere may or may not be important. A good pressure range might be between 10-20 Torr.

4) A current restricted power supply in which the voltage and current can be independently controlled. A typical voltage used by SAFIRE might be 600-1000 volts (sometimes higher or lower) and anywhere from a few to 40+ amps. Please note that the required amperage will depend upon the size of your anode. A smaller spherical anode will require less amperage than a large one. The power supply and control system should also be setup in such a way that it could survive surges of massive back currents. The SAFIRE Reactor can produce surges of up to 12 million watts that can destroy power supplies.

5) A careful and gradual increase in current after igniting the plasma with a sufficient voltage. Eventually, after passing through several other plasma regimes, large nested double layers will be produced. However, it’s the phase in which they collapse to one double layer close to the anode that triggers the excess heat and transmutations.

6) Equipment to monitor everything! Countless types of equipment could be mentioned here. However, I’d just like to mention that the idea of being able to watch the ion acoustic waves show up on an oscilloscope during the transition to the negative resistance regime (when the double layers show up and the current/voltage relationship flip flops) sounds incredibly exciting to me.

7) Safety gear! Safety protocols! Only PROFESSIONALS that are QUALIFIED and have a SUITABLE LABORATORY should ever dabble in this type of experimentation. Simply put, if you don’t know what you’re doing there are a gazillion ways to get hurt, severely injured, or worse.

The Dream of Self Sustain

Montgomery Childs already hinted during one of his presentations that in the future the cathodes of the SAFIRE reactor may not be required, because they think that the plasma ball itself is producing most of the electrons it needs to sustain itself from the general environment of the chamber. I think this is a simple way of saying that in the future the reaction might become self sustaining in that once a certain amount of input power has been applied to create the self organizing plasma that the plasma ball itself might be able to continue existing without externally applied power. This is different than simply closed looping the system by using the heat to produce steam, turn a generator, and then re-direct a small portion of that electrical output back into the power supply. What I’d like to point out is that such a self sustained mode of operation might be easier (although this would need to be tested) with a free floating plasma ball rather than one that is wrapped around an anode. This is because I suspect that at the level of self organization that would allow for the plasma ball to power itself the anode would be damaged or possibly destroyed. If a plasma ball floating between one anode and one cathode were self sustaining, there would be no damage because it wouldn’t be touching anything.

One major reason I believe such a self sustaining mode is possible is due to the fact there are existing experiments in mainstream scientific literature in which such a free floating plasma ball (created by a DC discharge) is maintained by simply cutting off the external electrical power to the circuit, keeping the circuit closed, sometimes placing a capacitor/resistor in the circuit, and applying another form of energy. For example, using a resistance heating coil on the cathode to induce thermionic emission or applying microwave or radiowave radiation. If they had been using an optimal fuel mixture with hydrogen, I believe that the heat from the LENR reactions would have been enough to sustain the plasma ball.

Conclusion

The SAFIRE Plasma Reactor is far more complex than what this document describes. To build a reproduction of their large reactor would be quite an undertaking. Yet the basic principles they utilize that result in excess energy and transmutations are simple. Please note that their first system was built in bell jar with various ports added! There is no reason why qualified professionals at university research centers and other suitable laboratories cannot seek to study the astounding and truly PARADIGM SHIFTING properties of self organizing plasmas (macro-EVOs) while the SAFIRE Project races towards the production of their industrial prototypes and commercialization.

The author wishes the SAFIRE Project and all the various companies that are utilizing the phenomena of self organizing plasmas tremendous success. By harnessing the potential of this miracle that’s literally light years beyond the invention of fire, we can rescue our civilization, build a better world for our species, and one day travel the stars to seek a place among the other intelligences in the universe.

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UN Report: Urges Low-Carbon COVID Pandemic Recovery

The United Nations Environment Programme has issued a new report titled Emissions Gap Report 2020: An Inflection Point, which predicts that despite a dip in carbon emissions due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, there is an urgent need for a green recovery due to the threat of dangerous temperature rises.

https://www.unenvironment.org/emissions-gap-report-2020

Here is a summary:

Despite a dip in greenhouse gas emissions from the COVID-19 economic slowdown, the world is still heading for a catastrophic temperature rise above 3°C this century – far beyond the goals of the Paris Agreement. But UNEP’s Emissions Gap points to hope in a green pandemic recovery and growing commitments to net-zero emissions.

It would seem like the environment is ripe for adoption of new energy technologies that produce no carbon emissions. Solar, wind, and nuclear are the choices that seem to be most in favor these days, but each has its drawbacks when it comes trying to solve the energy problem quickly. Andrea Rossi is surely aware that there is a need that he can fill with the E-Cat SKL, once he is able to introduce it.

Rossi on E-Cat’s SKL Energy Gain: Zero Point Energy Transfers Energy to Electrons ‘Not in Phase’

Here’s an interesting exchange on the Journal of Nuclear Physics regarding the theory behind the excess energy produced by the E-Cat. Since Andrea Rossi has now rejected the idea that the E-Cat is a LENR device, he has other ideas.

Physicist
December 15, 2020 at 4:01 AM
Dr Rossi,
How does your theoretical hypothesis on
http://www.researchgate.net/publication/330601653_E-Cat_SK_and_long_range_particle_interactions
to explain the appearence of anomalous energy, if you exclude the LENR ?

Andrea Rossi
December 15, 2020 at 5:30 AM
Physicist:
During our experiments we found the formation of charge clusters that have a density that cannot be easily explained inside the usual paradigms. To understand this phenomenon it is essential to overcome the paradigm according to which elementary particles are massive point-like objects, accepting instead the concept of a pure electromagnetic origin of the matter.
Not to mention the fact that from a point-like model of the electron would derive an infinite electric field.
The formation of clusters of electrons in phase causes a lower entropy and the exploiting of the zero-point energy, with transfer of energy to the electrons not in phase. We are working on the study of this mechanism and on an integration of the paper you cited, updating it with the discoveries we made in the last two years of experimentation.
Warm Regards,
A.R.

Andrea Rossi has stated recently that he is continuing to work on the theoretical as well as the practical side of the E-Cat, and from this and other comments it sounds like an update to his theory paper is in the works.

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Vattenfall to Explore Possibility of Small Nuclear Reactors for Estonia (Press Release)

Thanks to ECW reader Layman for posting a link to a press release from Swedish power company Vattenfall whose stated goal is “to enable fossil free living within one generation”.

https://group.vattenfall.com/press-and-media/pressreleases/2020/vattenfall-advances-its-estonian-cooperation-on-small-modular-reactors

“Vattenfall advances its Estonian cooperation on Small Modular Reactors”

Energia to explore the possibilities for Small Modular Reactor (SMR) deployment in Estonia. Building upon the present collaboration the parties have now signed a Letter-of-Intent to further expand their co-operation.

”Recently, we’ve seen a growing interest in small-scale nuclear reactors. Vattenfall’s intent with this project and in stepping up our cooperation is to support Fermi Energia to achieve a successful European SMR initiative. We will now deepen our studies in specific work areas and extend our collaboration until the submission of an application for a decision in principle by the Estonian Parliament. This will provide know-how to Vattenfall in an area where we’re building up our competence,” says Torbjörn Wahlborg, Senior Executive Vice President Generation at Vattenfall.

The collaboration will further explore the maturity of SMR technology and the prospects for deployment of one or several such reactors in Estonia. In addition to Vattenfall the initiative involves other European energy companies. All participants gain practical SMR technology insights and contribute their own experience.

“We’re happy to cooperate with a leading European utility operating nuclear power that is committed to reaching decarbonization in one generation. Higher safety, simplicity, lower capital cost and smaller size make nuclear a realistic option also for Estonia. This is recognized by the Estonian Government in the forming of a governmental nuclear energy working group. Innovative nuclear energy deployment is very challenging, but it is equally challenging to reach true carbon neutrality in all sectors of a Nordic society,” says Kalev Kallemets, CEO of Fermi Energia.

“Our cooperation with Fermi Energia leads us to a better comprehension in one of many areas of development. Vattenfall will share its previous experience of nuclear power plant construction. Our particular work areas within this agreement are how to structure newbuild financing, construction and costing, HR development, SMR operator and staff training and supply chain developments,” says Mats Ladeborn, Head of Fleet Development within BA Generation.

High CO2 emissions
The fact that Estonia has the highest CO2 emissions per produced kWh of electricity among EU member states is a rationale for the cooperation. The nation’s electricity generation is highly dependent on oil shale whereas Sweden has among the world’s lowest CO2 emissions and practically fossil free electricity generation due to a combination of hydro and nuclear power, wind power and solar PV.

The Estonian government has decided to form a national working group on nuclear energy to assess the introduction of nuclear power generation. The group will analyze – with the help of foreign experts – the suitability of introducing nuclear energy for ensuring the security and safety of Estonia’s energy supply. The working group will be convened this year and has a two-year working plan.

Fermi Energia has begun based on relevant study a formal dialogue with two municipalities on conditions that will hopefully lead to their agreement of being included in National Designated Spatial Planning (NDSP). The latter is the formal government led process including strategic environmental impact assessment of choosing the suitable site. Initiation of a planning process for potential SMR technologies justifies the formation of a regulatory system suitable for SMR deployment.

“Nuclear power comes with very low CO2 emissions and may contribute to the reduction of fossil fuel usage within the EU. The evolution of SMR technology looks promising and it is natural for us to follow technical developments within all sources of power generation that we utilize ourselves. A transition of Estonian electricity production would be a significantly positive climate measure for the EU as a whole,” says Mats Ladeborn.