Cold Fusion Reaction Replicated

New Scientist, Table-top fusion, back with a pop:

Reports that the bubble had burst for a form of cheap, table-top nuclear fusion may have been premature. Rusi Taleyarkhan, the physicist at the centre of a furore surrounding so-called bubble fusion, was last week cleared of scientific misconduct.

In 2002, Taleyarkhan, then at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee and now at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, published a paper in Science claiming that bombarding a solvent with neutrons and sound waves produced tiny bubbles that triggered nuclear fusion reactions. Then in March 2006, Purdue began investigating allegations of misconduct against Taleyarkhan, amid accusations that the evidence of fusion he reported was actually caused by a radioactive isotope of californium.

However, on 7 February, Purdue absolved Taleyarkhan's group of any misconduct. The verdict follows independent verification of Taleyarkhan's results by Edward Forringer of LeTourneau University in Texas and his colleagues last November (Transactions of the American Nuclear Society, vol 95, p 736).

I want my “Mr. Fusion”!

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6 Responses to Cold Fusion Reaction Replicated

  1. BroD says:

    I was envisioning something more along the lines of a lava lamp.

  2. Mojo says:

    If I was looking for confirmation of a really controversial finding, I’m sure nobody would dispute the work of a university like LeTourneau with a reputation in physics that is known as far away as Big Sandy and Gilmer. Cold fusion is a natural study area for that school though since the chair of the LeTourneau Physics Department (well, physics part of the Chemistry and Physics Department), Associate Professor Steven Ball, lists one of his primary areas of interests as “Science – Faith Integration”.
    Looks like you may have to wait just a bit longer for your Ronco Perpetual Motion Machine.

  3. Michael says:

    Ouch.

    Although the guy who did the experiment has a real Ph.D from a real place — “Forringer, Edward R., Assistant Professor of Physics. B.S., Guilford College, 1995; M.S., Michigan State University, 1997; Ph.D., Michigan State University, 2004.” — I’m a little concerned about whether he did the work in his own lab or used Taleyarkhan’s lab. If, as it seems, it was the latter, then even if they are both acting in good faith, the odds that there’s some sort of contamination in the lab producing the neutrons is just too high.

    Back to the present.

  4. DILBERT DOGBERT says:

    I would be real carefull to site anything coming out of LeTourneau University in Texas. Back in the day a coworker told me about LeTouneau. He was working on a pair of generators trying to sync them. A guy came up and said “Shut er down” My friend said hey I am almost finished give me a couple of minutes. The LeTourneau guy said it is “Time for prayer” Mr LeTourneau is very concerned that the shop shut down for prayer. So he shut’r down. Seems LeTournau made a pack with god that if he was allowed to succeed he would devote his life to what ever church he belonged to.
    I don’t know anything about the university but a little bit of caucion is in order.

  5. DILBERT DOGBERT says:

    I would be real carefull to site anything coming out of LeTourneau University in Texas. Back in the day a coworker told me about LeTouneau. He was working on a pair of generators trying to sync them. A guy came up and said “Shut er down” My friend said hey I am almost finished give me a couple of minutes. The LeTourneau guy said it is “Time for prayer” Mr LeTourneau is very concerned that the shop shut down for prayer. So he shut’r down. Seems LeTournau made a pack with god that if he was allowed to succeed he would devote his life to what ever church he belonged to.
    I don’t know anything about the university but a little bit of caucion is in order.

  6. Dan Riley says:

    Linking the Purdue misconduct investigation to the Forringer result, the californium issue–or any claim at all about the science–is pure spin. There is no science content in the Purdue announcement, and everything further about the Purdue internal investigation (including what allegations were investigated) is confidential.

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