Relationship between the burnishing process used by Mizuno and the Storms theory of NAE formation

Copyright by Edmund Storms August 2019. May be quoted freely with attribution.

Relationship between the burnishing process used by Mizuno
and the Storms theory of NAE formation
[.pdf] by Edmund Storms Kiva Labs, Santa Fe, NM (8/1/19)


Mizuno [1] has applied Pd to Ni mesh by burnishing and claimed to make excess energy by heating the material in D2 gas. This method is expected to produce the conditions predicted by Storms to cause LENR. The relationship between the burnishing method and the Storms theory of LENR is described as well as several testable predictions.


The LENR process involves two separate and independent events, one involving a common chemical process and the other caused by a unique nuclear process. The first event creates a condition in the material in which the nuclear process can function. Without this condition being present, the nuclear process cannot take place. But once this special condition forms, the nuclear process occurs without further delay. The difficulty in causing the LENR process results from failure to create this required special condition.

According to the Storms’ theory[2], this special condition, called the NAE (Nuclear Active Environment), consists of physical gaps having dimensions of a few nanometers between the atomic planes. Such gaps can be formed in many different ways, but up to the present time they have resulted when stress is relieved at random sites within the physical structure. The stress is created when the material, usually palladium, reacts with isotopes of hydrogen, thereby causing expansion. Removal of the hydrogen causes contraction, during which time most of the gaps (cracks) form. This counter intuitive conclusion results because the expansion resulting during reaction with hydrogen produces mainly compressive stress, which on average would not produce gaps. Removal of hydrogen produces contraction that results in the kind of stress required to produce gaps. Consequently, according to the Storms model, the Pd must experience deloading at one time during the study for LENR to be triggered.[3] Once formed, the NAE seems to be stable for long periods of time.

After a gap forms, generally at a grain boundary, the local stress can be relieved most easily by making the gap wider rather than by causing other gaps to form. This natural tendency causes the initial small gaps to grow wider and form what can be clearly seen as cracks rather than remain small enough to cause LENR. This process results because less energy is required to move atoms further apart once the atomic bond as been broken than is required to break the bond in the first place. Nature will always take the path of least resistance. This conventional process explains why LENR is not initiated even though many cracks are clearly observed.

The amount of overall dimensional change, hence amount of stress, is related to the amount of hydrogen that reacts, thereby causing an apparent relationship between the maximum D/Pd ratio achieved by the material and the amount of excess energy resulting from formation of numerous gaps.[4] Although, palladium is normally used to form the required gaps, which is the example used in this paper, other materials can be expected to experience the same process and consequently produce LENR.

The greater the number of gaps having the required dimension, the greater the overall rate of LENR. Because suitable gaps are rarely produced in conventional materials, the challenge is to modify the material such that a large number of independent small gaps can form during loss of hydrogen or by other means. The application of Pd to a Ni surface by the burnishing process, as used by Mizuno, achieves this requirement in two ways.

The first requirement is achieved because Pd is applied an amorphous form. Upon reaction with hydrogen, this non-crystalline structure would convert to the fcc structure at many independent sites. We can expect the resulting stress to cause many isolated gaps to form within the Pd layer. Additional gaps (cracks) would form at the Pd-Ni interface as result of the Pd expanding more than the Ni because the Pd reacts to a much greater extent than does Ni. Of great importance is that each of these processes takes place at many independent sites, with the stress not focused on only a few sites as is normally the case.

The second requirement involves the small particles of NiO that would be removed from the Ni surface and mixed with the Pd layer. A gap would be expected to form between the surrounding Pd metal and this inert inclusion, as hydrogen is lost from the structure.

If this description were correct, it would be expected to apply to all Pd found to produce LENR. I predict that commercial Pd observed to support LENR contains similar unintended inclusions that remain in the metal after the refining process and were not altered when the metal was formed into wire or sheet. Consequently, most pieces of the batch are found to produce LENR regardless of the final form created by physical means. This behavior explains why some batches of commercial Pd produce LENR for no obvious reason.

As an example, Fleischmann has described how boron is added to the molten Pd during the purification process to remove oxygen by formation of insoluble boron oxide, which floats to the surface and is physically removed. In view of the Storms model, the small pieces of oxide scattered throughout would make the Pd eventually nuclear active rather than the absence of oxygen.


The burnishing process was explored by rubbing a Pd rod against a 1 mm thick piece of Ni (1 cm x 2 cm) that had been previously electroplated with Pd. No NiO would be expected to be present on the Ni surface. As shown in Fig. 1, the amount of Pd transferred from the rod to the Ni was a linear function of the number of strokes after the first 50 strokes. In other words, each stroke transferred the same amount of Pd. The surface acquired a smooth bright metallic appearance where the rubbing had been applied. Fig. 2 shows islands of Pd, some of which appear to be poorly attached. This sample will be studied to determine what happens during reaction with D in the absence of included NiO.

FIGURE 1. Weight gain of the Ni sheet as result of pressing the edge of a Pd rod against the surface and moving it across the full length of the Ni plate. Each stroke was made at a random location on the surface so that most of the surface was eventually burnished with Pd.

FIGURE 2. SEM picture of a surface to which Pd was applied using the burnishing method. The Ni had been previously electroplated with Pd. Notice the islands of Pd. By eye, the surface looked polished and reflective where the burnishing had been applied.

A second sample of Ni was flame heated to about 800° C to form a visible (blue color) oxide layer after which it was burnished in the same way as the first sample. Although the blue color was removed to produce a bright metallic surface, no detectable weight increase (±0.00005 g) was produced after 600 strokes. Apparently the nature of the Ni surface affects the amount of Pd transferred to the surface. Consequently, the condition of the surface is revealed as being another important variable. This condition needs to be explored.

Any material that is not firmly attached to the surface would be expected to be pushed aside by the burnishing process and not be included in the Pd layer.

These samples will be first studied using electrolytic loading to determine how the Pd layer affects the uptake of D into the Ni using methods previously described.[5] The production of excess energy will be studied up to 85° C in D2O. If energy is detected, the samples will be studied in D2 gas up to 350°C.


Replicating exactly the procedure used by Mizuno is not as important as replicating what Mizuno caused. If he actually caused LENR, this result could be produced many different ways, as is typical of all natural phenomenon including LENR. Identifying the important variables becomes important so that the resulting LENR process can be replicated at will with total control. Some of these variables are suggested below as predictions. If these suggested methods cause LENR, this would provide further evidence that the NAE suggested by Storms is correct.

Although Storms also proposed a mechanism for the nuclear process, this part of the theory is not important when trying to create the conditions initiating the nuclear process because once the NAE forms, the nuclear process starts without any further knowledge or effort being required. Consequently, learning how to make and control the production of the NAE is the only important knowledge needed to cause and use LENR. Absence of this knowledge has been the reason for general rejection and why the various efforts have failed to make useful energy.


  1. Use of Ni that has been slightly oxidized by being heated in air to a temperature sufficient to cause thickening of the oxide layer will be more nuclear active than clean Ni.
  2. Use of Ni sbeet rather than a mesh will increase the effectiveness of the process by increasing the surface area of the deposited Pd.
  3. Use of other metals that form an oxide surface layer, such as Ag, Cu, Ti, and Fe, will be suitable as a substrate to which Pd is applied.
  4. Application of surface layers other than oxide to the substrate can be expected to improve the effectiveness of the process.
  5. Other metals that form hydrides, such as Rh, Ti, Zr, or Hf, should cause LENR when used as the burnished material.
  6. Use of softer alloys of Pd, such as Pd-Li, are expected to produce a more effective burnished layer compared to pure Pd. This alloy might also be more effective because it is more reactive to hydrogen than pure Pd.
  7. Burnished Pd can be expected to produce LENR when used as the cathode during electrolysis and gas discharge, as well as when the gas loading method of Mizuno is used.


(1) Mizuno, T. and J. Rothwell Increased Excess Heat from Palladium Deposited on Nickel (Preprint) in The 22nd International Conference for Condensed Matter Nuclear Science ICCF-22. 2019. Assisi, Italy.,

(2) Storms, E. How Basic Behavior of LENR can Guide A Search for an Explanation. JCMNS 2016, 20, 100.

Storms, E. K. A Theory of LENR Based on Crack Formation. Infinite Energy 2013, 19 (112), 24.

Storms, E. K. An Explanation of Low-energy Nuclear Reactions (Cold Fusion). J.Cond. Matter Nucl. Sci. 2012, 9, 85.

(3) Storms, E. Anomalous Energy Produced by PdD. JCMNS 2016, 20, 81.

(4) McKubre, M. C. H.; Crouch-Baker, S.; Riley, A. M.; Smedley, S. I.; Tanzella, F. L. Third International Conference on Cold Fusion, “Frontiers of Cold Fusion”, Held at: Nagoya Japan, 1992; p 5.

Castagna, E.; Sansovini, M.; Lecci, S.; Rufoloni, A.; Sarto, F.; Violante, V.; Knies, D.; Grabowski, K. S.; Hubler, G. K.; McKubre, M. al. 14th International Conference on Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, Washington, DC, 2008; p 444.

(5) Storms, E. In ICCF-21 Fort Collins, CO, 2018.

Relationship between the burnishing process used by Mizuno
and the Storms theory of NAE formation
[.pdf] by Edmund Storms Kiva Labs, Santa Fe, NM (8/1/19)

Locating the NAE

The search for the Nuclear Active Environment, the set of material conditions that causes LENR is a now a thirty-year pursuit and condensed matter nuclear scientists still debate where exactly the reaction takes place in the material to generate heat and transmutations.

To this day, few agree, and yet, without knowing the location of the reaction, engineering efforts are stymied in finding a recipe that both initiates and scale the effects.

Undoubtedly, the sheer number of LENR effects adds confusion. Is there one LENR mechanism able to explain all the different observable phenomenon? The preponderance of LENR models and theories certainly challenges this idea.

“Nature would not go about creating a variety of mechanisms to cause something so extraordinary and so rare,” says Edmund Storms. “Indeed, nature is known to be very stingy in finding the fewest number of ways of doing something and getting the job done. It’s called Occam’s Razor. The idea is that the simplest explanation is probably the more correct one.”

Dr. Edmund Storms spoke about the search for the NAE – and more – with Ruby Carat on the Cold Fusion Now! podcast.

Listen to Special Guest Edmund Storms on the Cold Fusion Now! podcast here.

“It’s very obvious that some unusual characteristic of the material has to exist in which the nuclear reaction will occur, and that particular condition is rarely formed. That’s what makes LENR so difficult to reproduce,” says Dr. Storms. “It’s really difficult to create the unique condition on purpose, especially if you don’t know what it is – with there being a number of conditions that would qualify. “

Super Abundant Vacancies as the NAE?

The idea of vacancies, places where atoms or nuclei should be but aren’t, is one of these candidates for the NAE. If an empty spot exists in a hydride where hydrogen is missing, perhaps that could be the location of the reaction.  A large number of such vacancies might account for the large amount of excess heat energy produced by these system

“People who favor the idea of a vacancy as the NAE find the Super Abundant Vacancy SAV concept particularly attractive because it contains lots of vacancies. The difficulty in creating SAVs is consistent with the difficulty in making cold fusion work”, says Storms.

“Furthermore, Peter Hagelstein, who is a firm advocate of the vacancy idea, has a complicated and highly mathematical description of how a vacancy would achieve a nuclear reaction. So he and his followers of this particular view are encouraged by having a possible structure containing even more vacancies than would normally be present.”

Two types of vacancies in Pd-D

“Vacancies are a characteristic of all materials. But, some materials have the ability to make vacancies of a certain kind, and other materials favor other types of vacancies. The concept of a vacancy is ambiguous”, describes Edmund Storms.

So far, the SAV model has been developed for systems that use the metal palladium and isotopes of hydrogen.

“In palladium-deuteride, which has been studied the most and has the most information, we know of two kinds of vacancies. A vacancy can form in the deuterium sublattice. In other words, positions are present where a deuterium  should be located, and there are positions where it should be located but it is not present, which is called a vacancy.”

“Vacancies can also form in the palladium atom positions.”

The figure shows a lattice structure with all the atom positions filled, with the green balls representing palladium.

“The number of vacancies in a material is sensitive to the thermodynamic properties of that material, and the thermodynamic properties are sensitive to temperature, pressure and composition. ”

“So if vacancies were in fact where the action was, then it should be possible, very conveniently and with foreknowledge, to create them in palladium-deuteride, because we know enough about that material and its basic thermodynamic and crystallographic properties to know how to create vacancies.”

“Unfortunately, that information does not allow the cold fusion reaction to be caused with any reliability. In fact, no relationship seems to exist between the presence of vacancies, which can be determined, and whether or not excess energy can be made.”

“So there’s no proof,” says Storms, “there’s no feedback from nature to show you that particular viewpoint is correct.”

Just having vacancies in palladium deuteride does not guarantee LENR. Something else is required. 

“The cold fusion reaction has been found to occur in a variety of materials, not just palladium-deuteride. Those materials have entirely different characteristics involving the ability to make vacancies. These vacancies seem to have no relationship to the ones in the palladium-deuteride. Yet, we still see the same nuclear effects.“

“We have to be very careful in imagining where this nuclear reaction actually occurs. In palladium, the reaction only occurs very near the surface when electrolysis is used. However, the surface region of the palladium cathode is not pure palladium. It’s a very complex alloy and is also very complex metalgraphically. So, a lot is going on in the material without a relationship to how people imagine palladium to behave.”

When analyzing palladium-deuteride theoretically, Edmund Storms says that “People don’t realize they’re not looking at something ideal as is described in the literature. They’re looking at a moving target. They’re looking at material that’s changed every time they do something to it. “

“Every time palladium is reacted with hydrogen or deuterium, then remove, and react again, the material is changed.  The characteristics are changed – thermodynamically, the shape, the size, the hardness- they’re all different. So how can a moving target be studied?”

Dr. Storms believes no correlation exists between the various materials producing LENR and the presence of vacancies because he sees no physical evidence relating vacancies with LENR.

“The idea of vacancies simply does not fit with the way this reaction behaves.”

“On the other hand, one characteristic that is universal and would fit is cracks or gaps in the structure. Those are totally universal and a correlation between their presence and LENR can be seen, so that’s where I focus my attention.”

Evidence for nano-cracks is universal

After years of experimental work, Dr. Storms became frustrated by failure, and wanted a direction for research. He looked to the theoretical models for guidance. Sadly, little of the mathematical machinations could tether to the reality of experimental procedure.

“I needed a guide to figure out how to treat a material to encourage it to produce the LENR effect, so I looked around at the various suggested unique features of a material, trying to figure out which one might be important.”

“After a considerable amount of trial-and-error, and logical deduction, I came to the conclusion that the only feature that made any sense were cracks.”

In 2014, Edmund Storms published The Explanation of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction An Examination of the Relationship Between Observation and Explanation, a book surveying the theories proposed to model LENR with critiques that systematically matched experimental evidence to each model’s conclusions. Together with logical deduction in thermodynamical arguments, he appraised their viability. In the end, he proposed one of his own models developed primarily from LENR observational data.

See article on Progress Report #6

When the right-sized nano-crack forms in Pd-D, Dr. Storms imagines “the hydrogen atoms would try to go into these cracks and fill them, and there would be a chemical relationship created between the deuterons occupying this crack.

“And then the question is, what would that chemical interaction do from a nuclear point of view.” Following the logic, Storms bumped up against the unknown.

“I was encouraged to believe that once this chemical structure formed, which could be described as a linear molecule of deuterons stuck together, one after another, this would start to resonate and the resonance would move the nuclei closer together periodically. “

“As the distance shorted, the nuclei in the molecule would suddenly discover they were on the way to a fusion reaction – not all the way, but with a possibility that energy could be released from their nucleus if they just did a couple things we don’t yet understand at this point.”

Storms’ idea of a nano-space filled with hydrogen creating some unique type of chemical structure is not far-fetched. Nano-technologies have uncovered many strange new phenomenon, where quantum effects are prominent and little understood. In this case, a linear hydrogen molecule is proposed to resonate to some stimulus, and engage in a new nuclear process of a gradually progressive fusion.

“I imagineas this structure resonated, the energy would be given off in small bits – not all at once as it is the case for hot fusion. In hot fusion, the energy goes off instantaneously. In cold fusion, the energy would go off slowly. I describe hot fusion as being fast fusion and cold fusion being slow fusion.”

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See the full documentary HYDROTON A Model of Cold Fusion on the Cold Fusion Now! Youtube page.

Resonating hydrogen nuclei release photons upon critical distance approach.
Graphic from The Explanation of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction.

Storms believes that slow fusion has been happening all along in various environments, but was overlooked by scientists in early fusion research because everyone was applying energy to the nuclei in order to overcome the Coulomb barrier by brute force, which automatically makes the fusion energy come off instantaneously.

“But within a linear molecule in a nano-gap, this new mechanism could exert itself, and so I imagined a resonance process would initiate a new kind of nuclear reaction.  This has always been possible but people never applied the right conditions for it to manifest itself.”

“This new phenomenon of nature might be a good source of energy and, because this is an entirely new kind of nuclear interaction, understanding might be rewarded by a Nobel prize.”

Detectable features of the Hydroton model

Dr. Storms believes the full explanation will be years in the making, and dozens of graduate students will have opportunities to get that prize. For now, finding a mathematical description for an unknown nuclear reaction remains a difficult next step. Conventional science won’t pay attention to the behavior unless a working LENR device is produced or a mathematical framework is accepted as a model.

“At this point I do not know – nor does anybody else know – how to describe the Hydroton model mathematically in a way that would make this acceptable to mainstream scientists.”

Still,  some features of Storms’ nano-NAE might provide quantitative parameters. Elaborating on the “slow” fusion process, Storms explains how smaller bits of a nuclei’s mass can turn into energy, and justifies the reasoning with observed experimental data.

“I believe the mass is converted to energy and the energy appears as a photon of a frequency (or wavelength or energy) which is not as large as a normal nuclear reaction would produce, but is large enough so that the energy contained in that photon is able to move away from the source, and be deposited and turned into heat as it passes through matter further away in the apparatus.”

Somehow, resonant nuclei are proposed to lose only a tiny bit of mass as they move closer, with that little bit of mass being converted into two photons going in opposite directions, as is required to conserve momentum. Both photons have enough energy to leave the nano-gap, with the energy being turned into heat elsewhere in the apparatus.  But the photons do not have enough energy to leave the apparatus, as evidenced by the lack of radiation detected outside the apparatus.

“We know precisely how the energy of a photon is converted to heat as it passes through matter. That’s well known. And these photons are no different than any other photon, so they just simply pass through matter, and lose energy as photon energy is converted to heat energy, which is called a phonon.”

“Nevertheless, some do have sufficient energy to get to a detector and are detected. A little bit of radiation is in fact seen experimentally. But it is not nearly enough to explain the amount of heat that is being given off. And I argue that’s because 99% of the photons that are made, are absorbed before they get outside to the detector.”

Storms estimates that the photon energy is “probably somewhere around 10keV. When the phonons are very much more energetic than that, they would be detectable.”

While heat is the main LENR effect, transmutation products are also found. Storms requires the Hydroton model to address this LENR effect as well.

Fusion and fission can occur simultaneously

“The linear molecule, that I call a hydroton, can attach itself to other atoms that happen to be nearby, such as impurity atoms that happen to be out of place in the NAE, for example in the crack with other debris.“

“When the fusion reaction takes place, those other nuclei that are attached chemically to the Hydroton experience ambiguity about their nuclear state. The energy being generated by the fusion reaction is re-directed to force one or more of these hydrogen nuclei into the nuclei of this attached atom.  In other words, fusion precedes and is required for transmutation to take place.”

Talking about the Pd-D systems, Storms says, “Normally, palladium contains some platinum. But after the LENR reaction has occurred over a period of time, many other elements are present as well.  A couple of these elements are heavier than palladium. Obviously something has gone into the palladium nucleus and stayed there. “

“On the other hand, most of these nuclear products are lighter than palladium, but when the weights of two of these products are added, the sum nearly equals the weight of palladium. In other words, the Pd nucleus seems to have split into two unequal parts after some D or H have been added to the nucleus.”

“It’s fascinating that this is a combination of fusion and fission taking place simultaneously in the material. That’s an entirely new concept in its own right. ”

But Storms believes that “this process requires fusion of hydrogen to provide the energy to overcome the Coulomb barrier, which would stand in the way of such a thing happening normally.”

 All of the hydrogen isotopes  (protons, deuterons, and tritons) will all fuse with each other. The mechanism that causes fusion is the same in each case, but the nuclear products of each of those reactions if different. Likewise, the transmutation products are all different but the same mechanism causes the process.

Testing LENR models requires a reaction to work

The only way to determine whether or not SAVs or nano-cracks are where the reaction takes place is to test the ideas. However, testing LENR theories requires the ability to make a reaction happen on demand, and that difficulty is part of the problem in determining which model fits best.

Says Edmund Storms, “To learn, the reaction needs to happen. Negative results aren’t very useful because millions of events can cause the reaction not to occur.  Only a couple conditions may be required to make it work. So, when the reaction doesn’t happen, which of the many ways failure might be caused is difficult to identify. There are just too many of them.”

“But if it works, then the conditions that apply can be identified. But, it works so seldom the information has accumulated only very slowly over the last  thirty years.”

“When the unique condition is identified, than active material could made with reliability. That’s what we’re striving to accomplish at this point. We have to know the cause of the nuclear process.  The only way of finding out is to explore using the right tools. Unfortunately, very few people have access to those tools.”

Impurities are the key to making nano-cracks

Edmund Storms’ is currently working in his private Kiva Labs treating palladium in various ways trying to encourage the production of nano-spaces within the metal.

He says “It’s very clear why impurities are important. When people have attempted to study very pure palladium, they’ve failed. Successful palladium has identifiable impurities in it. The problem is, we don’t know what those impurities are doing – their true concentration or their interaction.”

“Impurities at a grain boundary make a grain boundary weaker and, therefore, more susceptible to cracking. But, a lot of little cracks are required, not a few big cracks. Big cracks don’t work, and big cracks actually prevent the formation of small cracks. Making a large number of small cracks is difficult because Nature wants to make large cracks.” 

“So, trying to get the material to form a lot of little cracks is the challenge, although using suitable impurities seems to improve success. However, the number of possible impurities and their combinations is close to infinity. Consequently, finding the right combination by trial and error becomes a matter of luck!”

“I describe what I do as simply buying a lottery ticket and waiting to win. Every once in a while, I win a small prize, but so far, I have not won the lottery.

I buy a ticket, and see if I’m going to win, and if don’t, I buy another ticket.”

Edmund Storms is hopeful that a solution will be found, either by a lab in the U.S., or in one of the many countries around the globe desperate for energy.

“I’m optimistic that a solution will be found. However, this particular phenomenon of nature is one of the more difficult ones to figure out. It’s difficult because it has no theory behind it, it is not something science can conveniently understand, but also a very negative attitude is being applied by conventional scientists.”

“Fortunately, a few individuals with a lot of money have  set up laboratories in the US. If they persist, I expect they will figure it out.”

“I know this is happening in other countries as well. For example Japan has a very active program that is making progress in understanding. I suspect China also has a program, with both of these countries having a huge incentive to figure out how this works; the United States, not so much.

See also:

Q&A on the NAEShift theoretical focus from nuclear consequences to chemical beginnings

LENR behaviors that theory must explain

How to evaluate LENR theory?

How basic behavior of LENR can guide a search for an explanation

LENR theory paper revised with more detail

Edmund StormsHow basic behavior of LENR can guide a search for an explanation [.pdf] has been revised with more details.

Download [.pdf]


How basic behavior of LENR can guide a search
for an explanation
[.pdf] by Edmund Storms

The LENR effect was identified 27 years ago by Profs. Fleischmann and Pons as production of extra energy in a normal chemical structure, in this case PdD. Over a thousand published papers now support the discovery and the energy is shown to result from fusion of hydrogen isotopes without the need to apply energy and without energetic radiation being produced. By conventional standards, the claims are impossible. Nevertheless, a new phenomenon has been discovered requiring acceptance and understanding. The major behaviors and their present understanding are described in this paper and are used to suggest how an effective explanation might be constructed. Once again, science has been forced to either reject the obvious or accept the impossible. In this case, the normal skepticism needs to be ignored in order to determine if this promised energy source is real and can provide the ideal energy so critically

Low Energy Nuclear Reaction (LENR) or Cold Fusion was introduced to the world 27 years ago by Fleischmann and Pons(1), Univ. Utah, with expectation of great benefit to mankind. Instead, their claim for a new kind of fusion was quickly rejected (2), an attitude that continues even today. Over the years, several thousand papers addressed the subject with a large fraction supporting the claim(3). Mastery of about 1000 papers is now required to understand the effect.

A description of all the known behaviors and all proposed explanations would require much more than a single review paper. Here, only the tip of the large iceberg will be examined along with some original results not published elsewhere. The selection of behaviors is designed to focus attention on only the essential conditions required to cause the LENR effect. Limits will be set using observed behavior in order to evaluate proposed explanations. The new kind of nuclear interaction needed to explain LENR is expected to fall within these limits. In other words, boundaries need to be identified to keep the imagination from running wild. The LENR effect is assumed consistent with all rules normally applied to conventional chemical and nuclear behavior. Nevertheless, a novel mechanism is clearly operating and needs to be acknowledged.

Many conditions needing consideration are not quantitative or lend themselves to mathematical analysis. While frustrating to conventional scientists, these unique behaviors must be made part of a successful explanation. Quantitative behaviors can be used to expand understanding once the basic process is understood.

An effective explanation needs to solve several difficult problems. The Coulomb barrier needs to be overcome without using more energy than is normally available in a chemical structure at room temperature. Neutron formation, which has been suggested by several theoreticians (4, 5), is prohibited because the required energy of 0.78 MeV and the required neutrino can not be expected to be available at the same site at the same time. Once fusion has occurred, the mechanism must then dissipate the huge nuclear energy released by the process without producing local destruction of the chemical structure or energetic radiation. The mechanism must also account for various transmutation reactions known to occur. Failure to combine these events in a way that is consistent with known chemical and nuclear behavior dooms most efforts to explain the process. In contrast, a single mechanism is proposed in this paper to cause all observed behavior while being consistent with known chemical and nuclear behavior.

This paper has two parts, with the first describing the important observations on which an explanation must be based. The second part uses a few assumptions combined with these chosen behaviors to provide an explanation about how LENR can be initiated using a proposed mechanism. This mechanism is clearly much different from that causingn the conventional hot fusion process. Ironically, this conflict is used to reject the claims for LENR rather than guiding a search for the cause of the difference. Consequently, this difference must be clearly understood before the novel features of LENR can be explored.

Unlike hot fusion, LENR takes place in and requires a chemical structure to operate. The role of this structure must be understood before physics is applied to understanding subsequent nuclear process. Clearly, a unique and rare condition must form in the structure in which a nuclear process can function. The nature of this condition is discussed following the discussion of hot fusion.

Continue reading How basic behavior of LENR can guide a search for an explanation – Revised here.

What does theory do and how does it need to be tested?

For this discussion, I use the word “theory” to describe any attempt to explain using unifying concepts, regardless of the detail or the certainty being applied or expected.

All phenomenon in Nature are complex and do not have a single behavior. Some phenomenon have a single and obvious characteristic, such as gravity. But a full understanding requires more information than only a falling apple provides. A theory attempts to bring all the behaviors together into a single unifying understanding.

Sometimes, the behavior complex is large and involves many kinds of behaviors, such as is found for LENR. This phenomenon involves chemistry, nuclear physics, quantum physics, nano-technology, heat measurements, radiation measurements, and psychology. Each behavior appears to be isolated from every other behavior while being very unreliable in its occurrence. A different set of behaviors are even observed when different conditions are used. As result, a person has difficulty in knowing how many independent phenomenon are operating.

Without a unifying explanation, these behaviors make no sense, they can not be produced with reliable expectation, and amplification of the effect becomes impossible. We are forced to explore the effect at random, by trial and error, without any expectation of success.

This limitation can be greatly reduced when an effort is made to unify all the separate behaviors. Success requires the correct identification of the behaviors without introducing too much arbitrary imagination. The explanation must also be consistent as much as possible with behavior already accepted in chemistry and physics.

The best theory takes the greatest number of behaviors into account.

Unfortunately, we are presently overwhelmed by theories based on small subsets of the behavior complex.

The psychology of theory is also important. Some people seem to think that theory supports a claim, a conclusion, or a reveals something new about Nature. It does not. Theory is ONLY a tool used to connect a collection of behaviors so that the unifying characteristics can be revealed.

Theory can be neither proven or disproven. Only a logical relationship can be proven or disproven, but this kind of relationship is not a theory of natural behavior. Mixing these two kinds of explanations creates much confusion, especially in the minds of mathematicians who think their equations actually are an expression of the real Nature.

A theory of natural behavior simply relates a collection of behaviors in order to predict future behavior under a wide variety of conditions. For example, the laws of thermodynamics allow the behavior of chemical systems to be predicted when a wide range of conditions are used. The theory does not reveal how how or why these behaviors occur, except perhaps as result of using imagination.

Quantum theory attempts to answer such questions, but again much imagination must be used. The part of any theory based only on imagination is subject to change as more understanding based on behavior is achieved. Of course, the part of theory based on behavior, rather than imagination, remains unchanged. The connection between these two different aspects of theory remain confusing to many people, even to scientists.

To state another way, theory proves nothing about Nature and is subject to change without notice as the part based on imagination is modified. Nevertheless, the human mind must have an explanation regardless of how effective it might be in describing Nature. Any crazy idea will serve as long as it attempts to satisfy this craving. That is why so many theories are applied to LENR. LENR is a theory vacuum that must be filled. Pretending this need does not exist or is not important is pointless because it is basic to human nature.

Nevertheless, this does not mean all theories need to be taken seriously. Eventually, someone will put the pieces together in the correct way and the theory will become part of conventional understanding. The sooner this happens, the sooner the effect will be accepted by conventional science.

New graphic from updated version of The Explanation of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction depicting resonating hydrogen nuclei upon approach
New graphic from updated version of The Explanation of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction depicting resonating hydrogen nuclei upon approach

In my case, I have attempted to unify as many behaviors as possible while identifying all the behaviors and citing the sources. I also attempted to show the deficiencies of other theories, which need to be filled rather than stubbornly insisting on deficient ideas.

Understanding the logical connections in my theory will reveal a total structure that connects many behaviors. Appropriate testing to keep, modify, or discard any ideas can then be used to refine the model.

Examples of how nature dissipates nuclear energy

I’m trying to encourage use of known behavior to evaluate the possibly explanations for LENR.

One of the goals of scientific theory is to improve application of the phenomenon being explained. A theory is not “useful” if does not actually describe how LENR works so that the theory can be used to improve the ability to produce LENR at commercial rates. When this definition is applied, the present theories are not useful.

A great deal is known about nuclear behavior in general and LENR in particular. This information is being ignored in preference to using imagined processes having very little relationship to what is known or is possible based on logic. We need to start by acknowledging and agreeing on some basic conclusions. We need to apply these conclusions consistently to every effort to explain LENR. We can fill in the details as we go along, but not at the start of the process.

The lesson provided provided here involved a universal characteristic of all nuclear reactions, with one apparent exception. Normally, when a nuclear reaction of any kind occurs, the energy is released as KINETIC energy contained in emitted particles, including photons.

When fusion takes place at any temperature under any condition, except LENR, the nuclear product fragments into two particles.

Release of nuclear energy [.ppt]

Nuclear energy is normally released by fragmentation, but LENR is different.
Nuclear energy is normally released by fragmentation, but LENR is different.

This conclusion leads to another.

Muon fusion shows that simply bringing two D close together, even at low temperature, results in the normal fragmentation of the product. This means that any imagined process that simply forces the D to get close enough to fusion can be expected to release energy by the normal fragmentation mechanism. Clearly any process that brings the two D close enough to fuse during LENR also must involve a process that releases the energy in a manner different from what nature normally uses because the hot fusion products are not detected during LENR.

In the case of LENR, the nuclear products do not fragment. This result is most clearly seen in the production of helium created in numerous studies and the transmutation products created by Iwamura et al. Tritium production is less clear in this regard but is nevertheless consistent with this conclusion.

Helium can result from two deuterons combining into a single nucleus. This reaction produces more energy/He than any other possible source of helium. The amount of energy/He measured during LENR is close to the amount resulting from D-D fusion and is significantly greater than the amount resulting from any other source of helium.

The process of helium production shows no evidence for the energy being released as the kinetic energy of particles or fragments resulting from the process. In other words, the helium results from a mechanism that is very different from the mechanism normally used by nature to dissipate nuclear energy.

If we agree on these facts, we can conclude that LENR requires a process that both lowers the Coulomb barrier and at the same time dissipates the resulting energy in a novel manner using an unusual mechanism. The only challenge is to find a mechanism that combines lowering of the barrier with energy dissipation in a consistent and logical way. In other words, we need to stop looking for individual mechanisms for these two processes that act independently of each other. We must look for a single unifying mechanism.

Let’s move on to examine some of the proposed processes, starting with the “breathers” idea.

Several people have proposed a spontaneous temperature change can occur in a material such that some local regions can get cold enough of a BEC to form or hot enough for normal fusion to occur. Although this concept violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics, the event is proposed to be brief and random, which are considered exceptions to the Second Law.

Let’s start by imagining the sequence of events. First a D atom gets suddenly very cold by losing energy to its surroundings. We will not be concerned how this happens just yet. For a BEC cluster to form, other D atoms have to move from their present locations some distance away from the cold spot to the cold spot while the spot remains cold. To move, a D must have kinetic energy. So, the process is imagined to result in energetic D accumulating together into a structure that does not have energy.

Where does the energy go that each added D brings to the growing BEC? Now an energy extracting mechanism must be proposed such that as energy is brought to the site by each D, a mechanism removes the energy to the warmer surroundings. This is no longer a random process and it must continue long enough for many D to diffuse from sites located at increasing distance from the growing BEC. To repeat, the D has to move by diffusion, which requires energy. Once it joins the BEC, it has to dump this energy into the surrounding atoms. This event has to occur hundreds of times as this BEC grows on its isolated site. In addition, millions of other isolated sites within the lattice have to grow similar a BEC. This process has to take place for weeks in order to continue producing energy at the observed rate and duration.

Consequently, we have to imagine conflict with three basic requirements: violation of the Second Law, the violation of Gibbs energy requirements, and creation of an energy extracting mechanism not know to exist. This idea seems to require a high level of conflict in order to justify a process that has no reason to exist other than to explain LENR. This level of conflict is too high to apply this idea to LENR.