355) Discussing SPAWAR neutrons, etc.

Ludwik Kowalski; 10/31/2008
Department of Mathematical Sciences
Montclair State University, Upper Montclair, NJ, 07043


1) Introduction
There was an exchange of interesting messages about CMNS phenomena on a private Internet discussion list for researchers. After showing four messages posted today I will show the abstract of a paper that Takahashi attached to his message.

2) Message posted by Ed Storms (from USA)
I would like to throw an idea into the discussion pot and see what  kind of soup results. We all know that a few neutron have been detected from CF cells.  When  tritium is measured at the same time, the ratio strongly favors tritium. The challenge has been to explain this behavior.

If the neutrons result from a hot fusion reaction, such as caused by fractofusion, why is the tritium not made in the amount expected to result from hot fusion [where the number of neutrons is the same as the number of tritons] ?

Helium is produced when excess heat is detected. Suppose the helium starts with enough energy to produce neutrons from the well known alpha/n reaction. Most efforts to detect neutrons have failed because the basic helium-energy producing reaction was not initiated. Most successful studies that actually produced the helium-heat reaction did not use neutron detectors. Therefore, this emission was missed because the number of neutrons is too small to be noticed without a sensitive  
neutron detector.

In other words, helium and tritium are made by the NAE [Nuclear Active Environment favoring CMNS phenomena] and neutrons are emitted in small amount because the resulting alpha can have enough energy to cause the alpha-n reaction with impurities within a F- P cell {Fleischmann-Pons cell], such as B or Li.

Takahashi is one of the few people who measured the energy of emitted neutrons under conditions that produced some heat.  These neutrons had an energy that could have been produced by an alpha/n reaction. What do you think of this idea, which is counter to what we have assumed to be the case?

[Ed Storm is the author of a book about CMNS phenomena (1)] :

3) Message posted by Mahadeva Srinivasan (from India)
There seems to be strong evidence to suggest that tritium appears invariably after a neutron burst. We have gone on record to suggest that both neutron and tritium occur simultaneously. I can pull out all our results which support this contention for you.

In your alpha to neutron model where does the tritium come from? Keeping in mind the experimentally confirmed branching ratio anomaly, I would therefore propose that what ever be the origin of tritium, neutrons seem to be a small byproduct or side reaction of that process.

P.S.
* We had pointed out in our ICCF1 paper that many groups at BARC seem to have independently noted that invariably tritium is observed in the electrolyte only after a large neutron burst is recorded. See for example Figs 3 and 7 of the Overview paper by Iyengar et al at ICCF1. So I continue to support the notion that tritium and neutrons are coupled.

* Whether tritium also arises from the same NAE which generates helium is worth examining. Ed has a good point!

* The very concept of an NAE proposed by Ed suggests hot spot behaviour. We had observed hot spots through autoradiography in Ti tagets in very many TiD targets. (See our Provo meeting paper of 1990 titled "Observation of Tritium in Gas/Plasma Loaded Ti Samples". (This paper has just been uploaded by Jed in the lenr site. THANKS JED!)

* Our papers on Statistical Analysis of neutron emission published first at ICCF1 and repeated on a different Milton Roy cell  in 1994 and published in ICCF5 once again pointed out that there are many instances of bunched neutron emission suggesting that there seem to be events where hundreds of neutrons are emitted.

* So what does all this mean? Neutrons are localised in time; Tritium is localised in space (hot spots & NAE); Tritium and neutrons are coupled.

* Superimpose on this the branching ratio anomaly of 10**(-8) you come to the tantalising conclusion that micronuclear explosions seem to be occurring, highly localised in space and time.

* So far I have not seen any evidence that He and Tritium are coupled, meaning that they are both occurring in the same event. But Eds hunch that there cant be two categories of NAE forming sounds quite plausible. May be they are all coupled and all emanating from micronuclear explosions!

* This is where I come back and once again emphasise the importance of statistical analysis of the neutron emission. As far as I can see neutron diagnostics is the only tool through which we can investigate the concept of cascade events.

* I have been trying to convince Pam and the SPAWAR group that they are well placed experimentally to verify this independently !

4) Message posted by John Fisher (from USA)
Polyneutron theory predicts exothermic reactions between a polyneutron An and deuterium 2H that generate reaction products 1H, 3H, and n.  Reaction energies depend on whether the polyneutron contains an even or an odd number of neutrons. Reaction is favored by increased energy and is inhibited by a correlation barrier for An ---> AH (in which a proton is substituted for a neutron in a polyneutron).

For odd-A polyneutrons the reactions in order of their rates are

An + 2H ---> (A+1)n + 1H + 8.9 MeV   (favored)
An + 2H ---> (A-1)n + 3H + 3.6 MeV
An + 2H ---> (A+1)H +  n + 8.9 MeV  (inhibited).

For even-A polyneutrons the reactions in order of their rates are

An + 2H ---> (A+1)n + 1H + 0.5 MeV
   An + 2H ---> (A+1)H +  n + 0.5 MeV  (inhibited)
An + 2H ---> (A-1)n + 3H – 4.8 MeV (endothermic).

(Energies are written only to the nearest 0.1 MeV because experiment has not provided more accurate experimental evidence for polyneutron masses.) For reaction energies above 1 MeV we expect 1H and n with energies 8.9 MeV, and 3H with energy 3.6 MeV; and we expect the neutron reaction to be strongly inhibited by a correlation barrier. For reaction energies less than 1 MeV we expect 1H and n with energies 0.5 MeV and again we expect neutrons to be strongly inhibited. Overall we expect more tritium than neutrons. (In an earlier communication I have accounted for helium in proportion to heat without direct or indirect generation of neutrons: most heat comes from the 8.9 MeV 1H reactions and the helium comes from polyneutron decay.)

I appreciate that polyneutron theory is unpopular. By this communication I do not expect to change the situation in the short term. But I have hopes for the cumulative influence of polyneutron predictions in the long term.

[John Fisher has been promoting the idea of polyneutrons for many years. The latest version of his theory is described in the proceedings from a 2008 conference (2)]

5) Message posted by Akito Takohashi (from Japan)

Dear Ed and all; this is good idea. As you know, my past group at Osaka University made serious efforts, under the Japanese New Hydrogen Energy Project (1994-1998), to search possible correlation between excess heat, He-4, neutron, tritium and X-rays. We used most sophisticated method available at that time. I am attaching a summary paper, for people who do not have it.

We had some results to draw what was taking place, but it was not definite. We used only Pd-plates for the cathode of D2O electrolysis (c.f. H2O). The main difficulty was low level of excess heat, very low [rate of ] nuclear emissions and [poor] reproducibility.

Now, in 2008, we have had some [progress with] reproducibility. The nano-size-Pd samples have shown encouraging results by the Energetics-SRI-ENEA method of US+SW electrolysis, The SPAWAR co-deposition electrolysis method, The Arata-type nano-particle D-gas loading method, The Celani-type nano-wire D-gas loading method, etc.

If we can combine again these newer methods and the past sophisticated diagnosis methods (see the attached paper), [then] we will have a good chance to [study] the correlation between the observed products. That would lead to understanding of the underlying mechanism. Unfortunately, funding to support such investigations is not available.

I do have some theoretical ideas but will not touch upon them today.[Akito Takahashi used to be an experimental nuclear physicists. But, after retiring, he decided to focus on theoretical considerations, as illustrated in (3)]

[Akito Takahashi used to be an experimental nuclear physicists. But, after retiring, he decided to focus on theoretical considerations, as illustrated in (3)]

6) Abstract for the 1998 paper by Takahash et al. (4):
Using two electrolysis systems based on D2O/Pd electrolysis,experimental searches were tried to find correlation between excess heat and possible nuclear products (neutrons, X rays,tritium and helium). One was the open electrolysis system, with twin cells to study correlation between excess heat, X-rays and neutrons The other was the closed electrolysis system to study correlation between D/Pd ratios, excess heat, neutrons and helium. No very clear correlation between excess heat and any nuclear products have been observed, but several marginal-level data were obtained to show helium-4 production when excess heat were observed in the closed electrolysis system. In few cases by the open electrolysis experiments, clear excess heat was observed with no visible increases of characteristic X-rays and neutrons over the background. Burst events of soft X-rays and neutrons were observed in few cases, being independent of excess heat production.

References
(1)
Ed Storms, “The Science of Low Energy Nuclear Reaction: A Comprehensive Compilation of Evidence and Explanations about Cold Fusion;” Singapore: World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., 2007. 312 pp. $71.OO (hardcover) ISBN-13978-981-270-620-1.

(2)
John C. Fisher “Outline Of Polyneutron Theory;” in proceedings of 8th International Workshop on Anomalies in Hydrogen/Deuterium Loaded Metals, 13-18 October, Sheraton Catania, Sicily, Italy. Edited Jed Rothwell and peter Mobberley. The international Society for Condensed Matter Nuclear Science.

(3) Akito Takahashi and Norio Yabuuchi “D-Cluster and Fusion Rate by Langevin Equation,” in proceedings of 8th International Workshop on Anomalies in Hydrogen/Deuterium Loaded Metals, 13-18 October, Sheraton Catania, Sicily, Italy. Edited Jed Rothwell and peter Mobberley. The international Society for Condensed Matter Nuclear Science.

(4) “Original Experimental Study on Correlation between Excess Heat and Nuclear Products by D2O/Pd Electrolysis,” by Akito Takahashi, Hirotake Fukuoka, Kenichi Yasuda and Manabu Taniguchi. International Journal of of Material Engineering for Resources, vol. 6 No.1, 1998.

APPENDED ON NOVEMBER 1, 2008

7) Horace Heffner wrote: (from USA)
Ed wrote: “To summarize, Horace, an energy difference exists between the three reaction paths that you expect to influence the reaction rates.  This difference does not have an influence when the reaction is initiated at high energy. Why not?”

The energy difference does have an influence because the mass deficit from the final products limits the energy available from the reaction.  If specific strong force bonds do not form then no kinetic or radiant energy results from their formation. If a strong force bond forms that must be broken in order to make some final fusion product, then the energy must be available in the excited nucleus to break that bond, i.e. to undo it, else the reaction is not feasible.  Energy is key.

Further, in a vacuum initiated kinetic fusion reaction there is no electron in the excited He* intermediate product reducing the amount of available energy.  This makes the reaction pathways fairly simple. In the lattice it is feasible for electron catalyzed fusion to occur.  A catalytic electron has an energy related influence on the final products feasible, and this influence varies with time.

Ed also wrote “In addition, until the reaction is initiated, how do the nuclei know how much energy will be released, hence what the rate should be? “

The energy exciting the intermediate 4He* comes primarily from formation of strong force bonds.

Ed also wrote “The He reaction is suppressed in a vacuum because emission of the required gamma violates several rules, hence is hard to initiate.”

Yes, there is a momentum problem and maybe a long half life for any gamma emission that allows the other branches to occur first.  Again, this problem doesn't exist if there is an electron in the He*.  The electron can radiate away the energy to the lattice in small increments.

Ed also wrote “In contrast, the He reaction is very favored in a solid. Obviously, the environment plays an important role.”

Yes indeed, but here it takes the Deflation Fusion model to understand this I think.  The deflated state is very brief - too brief to provide electron catalysis for high energy vacuum collisions except at energies so extreme fusion is otherwise expected.  Electron catalyzed fusion in the vacuum is thus just not readily observable. Though it is brief, the deflated state repeats rapidly enough (has sufficient observation probability) when in an appropriate lattice environment to make fusion observable.

Ed also wrote “Why would the environment not also affect the tritium reaction, independent of any energy considerations?”

The environment does affect the tritium reaction, the branching ratio, but just not independent of energy considerations. The key to understanding the branching ratio in detail is being able to model tunneling probabilities, lattice electron wave functions, and  
catalytic electron behavior, including radiation, sufficiently to estimate the mean value m and deviation s of the catalytic electron energy deficit through time.  This is undoubtedly a very large undertaking, both theoretically and experimentally.  The underlying concepts are fairly simple though.


Ed also wrote “After all, the tritium is generated with only a small fraction of the total energy just like the helium.”

I don't think this is right.  The mass deficit of the resulting products differs. The energy of the tritium reaction, 4.03 MeV  *is* the available energy, not 23.9 MeV or some large number (ignoring any vacuum energy exchanges that might occur).  It actually takes a lot *more* energy away in the form of mass (19.87 MeV) to form tritium from the He* than helium.  See discussion below.

Ed also wrote “The process of distributing the energy, I expect, would be similar in the two cases. Therefore, the energy associated with the total, ideal process would not be operating on the actual reaction products. Why then should the total energy play a role?”

Because the breaking of a strong force bond, or the failure to form such, changes the final mass deficit and thus the reaction energy available.  Again, the mass deficit energies are given by:

D(D,p)T   4.03 MeV
D(D,n)3He   3.27 MeV
D(D,gamma)   23.9 MeV

A small waveform electron in the He* intermediate product reduces the above energy by an amount depending on the electron waveform size at the time of the final product formation.

If the electron wavelength is sufficiently small to momentarily impose a 6 MeV additional deficit, then at that time the energy to permit the D(D,p)T or D(D,n)3He reactions is not available.

Another way to look at this is to assume the 4He* activated nucleus is created upon fusion, having 23.9 MeV energy embodied in the thermalized motion of the constituents: two neutrons, two protons, and an electron.  The highly non-linear motion of the constituents places various amounts of strain on each of the bonds until some  
energy is radiated away and the process continues, or one or more of the bonds is broken an reaction products result.  Under this assumption the bond breaking to enable the D(D,p)T reaction requires 23.9 MeV - 4.03 MeV = 19.87 MeV.  Similarly the bond breaking to enable the D(D,n)3He reaction requires 23.9 MeV - 3.27 MeV = 20.63 MeV.

If in a given environment at some point, we suppose the catalytic electron creates and energy deficit -E(m,s), where m = -6 MeV, and s = 0.25 MeV, then T production would be a  4 sigma exception event, and neutron production would be a 7 sigma exception event.

It is notable that the catalytic electron wave function can be expected (at least in my framework) to expand until it can occupy a chemical energy sized orbital.  It can also radiate energy in the process.  The energy for the expansion and radiation is supplied by a combination of the action of the zero point field and fusion energy.

8) Peter Gluck wrote: (from Romania)
[Responding to Ed Storms] Just to mention that the optimal form of Pd samples was not tested yet. In my opinion it is metallized fibers- e.g. carbon nanotubes coated with Pd and probably other metals in layers- really monodimensional, kind of Patterson beads in one dimension. This is logical if we accept that LENR happens at the surface, in limited areas. The difficult part is the manufacture of these metallized fibers, despite a great experience existent the field. But actually it is no progress in higher heat effects obtained and reproducibility is still white (or gray) magic rather than a science. My explanation- poisoning with gaseous impurities from air that inactivate NAE is ignored. O.K- but if we do not believe in occult phenomena we have to find some explanation and prove it experimentally. Each year I am getting older and more worried for the future of the field.

[Responding to Akito Takahashi] Volume is useless, we need surface, therefore Pd coated on some nanofiber at a minimum thickness and protected with a monomolecular layer of some material is ideal. I think that all really strong heat release events as Mizuno's historical unquenchable cathode or cathode 64 of Energetics had some aleatory protective layer and avoided poisoning.

9) Akito Takahashi wrote
[Responding to Peter] I agree with your view "mono-dimensional Pd samples". Actual forms are of maximum-surface & minimum-volume as nano-wire, nano-particle or complex composite, nano-fabricated (designed) fractal samples, etc. We will try many forms of such materials. Man must get aging every day after day, but try to get something new.

10) Ed Storms (responding to John Fisher)
I agree, the polyneutron theory has some useful features and predictions. The next step is to show that polyneutrons actually exist based on some measurement outside of CF and show the conditions that cause the predicted reactions to occur.  Without such supporting information, the idea has no greater benefit to the field than the  
other equally unsupported ideas.  Can you think of a way to demonstrate the actual existence of polyneutrons?  What exactly  has to happen in a F-P cathode to start the sequence of events you predict?

11) Drew Meulenberg wrote: (from India)
I believe that Horace has the essentials of a correct model for LENR. See italicized comments interleaved with his story. These comments are mainly based on K. P. Sinha's and my paper at ICCF-14 (and the consequences).

> “... in a vacuum initiated kinetic fusion reaction there is
> no electron in the excited He* intermediate product reducing
> the amount of available energy.  “ The "starting energy of the
> He* nucleus is also higher. This means that there is more
> time for (therefore more chance of) fragmentation before the
> nuclear energy drops below the critical values. Therefore,
>2 channels dominate.

He also wrote “This makes the reaction pathways fairly simple. In the lattice it is feasible for electron catalyzed fusion to occur.” KP and I feel that 2 electrons (a lochon) are required to catalyze the LENR.

> “A catalytic electron has an energy related influence on the
> final products feasible, and this influence varies with time.”

The closer the deuterons approach, the higher the electron energy (1-D effect) and, therefore, the smaller its orbit and Compton wavelength.

>“...The electron can radiate away the energy to the lattice in
> small increments.”

This post-fusion action of the electrons / lochon is the critical ingredient that blocks the fragmentation channels by dropping the nucleon energies below threshold. The energies drop below the D(D,n)He3 threshold (3.27 MeV) first; then the D(D,p)T  threshold (4.03 MeV). If the process is too slow, fragmentation will occur.

> Though it is brief, the deflated state repeats rapidly enough
> (has sufficient observation probability) when in an appropriate
> lattice environment to make fusion observable.

I'm assuming this refers to the phonon frequencies, which may exceed 1E14/second.

> The environment does affect the tritium reaction, the branching
> ratio, but just not independent of energy considerations.  The key
> to understanding the branching ratio in detail is being able to
> model tunneling probabilities, lattice electron wave functions,
> and catalytic electron behavior,

KP and I have done all this in our ICCF-14 presentation and subsequent work.

>   including radiation, sufficiently to estimate the mean value m
> and deviation s of the catalytic electron energy deficit through time. 

Radiation coupling of excited nucleons with the lattice (via the electrons / lochon) is not straight forward since it is an interaction of the nucleon near-field radiation with the "inside" of an electron wave function. Nevertheless, that is our goal over the next few months.

12) What started this thread?
The answer to this question came in the form of a message posted today by Akito. The attached file (quoting earlier contributions to this thread) reminded me that the discussion was triggered by a claim, made by the SPAWAR team, that their triple-prong tracks, in CR-39 detectors, are due to neutrons of several MeV. Responding to their message I wrote: “Most of [the interactions with fast neutrons would consist of] scattering (elastic and inelastic), the rest [would] consist of several competing reactions, such as 12C(n,p), 12C(n,d) etc. One of these reactions might be 12C(n,alpha)8Be, where 8Be always fissions into two alpha particles, immediately. That would indeed produce three alpha particles outgoing from a single point. . . . Most triple-prong events would originate deep inside the CR-39, rather than at its surface. Multiple-etching technique (used by SPAWAR people and by Oriani) would either confirm or refute this expectation.”

I also wrote “But how certain are SPAWAR people that neutrons with energies exceeding 6 MeV are emitted during electrolysis? Hopefully, the answer will emerge before the ICCF15.” In another place I speculated about projections of the tripple-prong events, seen in CR-39. In most cases one of the projected 12C(n,alpha)8Be prongs would be considerably shorter than two other prongs. This observation was based on the old angular distribution data published by Takahashi.