Part II, Ethics & Research Misconduct, with Letter from Alessio Guglielmi
As you float in the sea of information and miss-information, of knowledge and propaganda, of truth and lies, shining the spotlight at the current testing team and their past history, the team that has partnered with Andrea Rossi to help promote his e-cat fraud and scam; the fog slowly lifts, you can see the shoreline more easily, the edge of the island where Andrea Rossi with his partners and disciples have erected their house of cards, their imaginary castle. Where they design and build their free energy fraud and scam called the e-cat. Where they do their “tests” and put on their “demonstrations.” Where they materialize, with their incantations, all of its many, absolutely stupid, and ridiculous physical incarnations.
Going from this in the beginning:
Notice that the main resistor is on the outside of the device.
It is our opinion that this model of the e-cat device is nothing but hollow copper tubing. There is another resistor with wires going into the copper pipe. We believe this internal resistor is positioned near the temperature probe in the “chimney.”
To this, the latest version:
With declining tests claiming over 200 COP in the beginning, to the latest tests claiming only a COP of 3. Promising always to be selling commercial units to “customers,” but one never materializes. With only one 1MW plant ever built, redressed many times with new clothes, to try and give the impression it was different units. Selling licenses to many disciples who dream of making this world a better place, (in addition to getting filthy rich), but now buying back those licenses, (when the disciples consider legal action), in an attempt to keep out of jail.
To understand our position more fully concerning misconduct by scientists involved with Andrea Rossi, please read our article: Andrea Rossi, E-cat, Industrial Heat LLC – LIES, Tests, Ethics & Research Misconduct
It is our humble opinion, based on worldwide standards of ethics for scientific/engineering testing and research, that the following people have engaged in ethic violations, including research and scientific misconduct; in addition this “research and scientific misconduct” is being used to advance the acceptance of, and obtain money for, the e-cat fraud and scam.
Andrea Rossi…………. Chief Scientist, Industrial Heat LLC (a self-imposed title)
Giuseppe Levi………… Bologna University, Bologna, Italy
Evelyn Foschi…………. Bologna, Italy
Bo Höistad……………… Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
Roland Pettersson….. Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
Lars Tegnér…………….. Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
Hanno Essén…………… Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
For a long time leading up to the second report at the beginning of every article we said:
“All of those who believe in Andrea Rossi, all of those who think Rossi is some kind of savior who will “save the world,” all of those who are disciples of Rossi, say the same thing — everyone should be looking forward — looking to the next bit of news or the results of the next test or demo. We say that is pure PROPAGANDA. THAT is exactly what keeps these types of scams alive. THAT is exactly what the scammers, like Rossi, want you to think and believe, instead of thinking for yourself. All those who only look forward in these types of scams will only see more false hope, more lies and falsehoods, more money going into the scammers’ pockets. What everyone should be doing is looking backward — to find out how the world of free energy and cold fusion/LENR arrived at the sad state of affairs it is currently in at this time.”
“A brief message to the authors of any future report on any test of any e-cat by the crook Andrea Rossi:
- If you put your name on a paper analyzing one of the e-cat tests or demos, and in the paper there are claims lacking in provability by others, i.e. (requires the reader to “trust” the authors), your paper is worthless to all but a scammer and in our opinion, you become an accomplice with Rossi and a partner in his scam.
- If you put your name on a paper analyzing one of the e-cat tests or demos, and in the paper there are outrageous claims of free energy, and the testing procedure did not eliminate all of the possible ways the demo or test might have been falsified, your paper is worthless to all but a scammer and in our opinion, you become an accomplice with Rossi and a partner in his scam.
- If you put your name on a paper analyzing one of the e-cat tests or demos and claim the e-cat is, or even the possibility of the e-cat being, a cold fusion/LENR device, and you do not prove in your paper that some type of cold fusion/LENR did in fact take place, your paper is worthless to all but a scammer and in our opinion, you become an accomplice with Rossi and a partner in his scam.
- If you put your name on a paper analyzing one of the e-cat tests or demos and a truly independent third party cannot perform their own test to verify the claims in your report, your paper is worthless to all but a scammer and in our opinion, you become an accomplice with Rossi and a partner in his scam.”
This testing team published their first official report on a “hot-cat” on 16 May 2013, on arXiv.
The title was: “Indication of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device”
Within 4 days they had published a revision on 20 May 2013. After extreme critical comments and critical publications they issued their final version #3 only about three weeks after the initial date of publication.
The version #3 included an appendix on electrical measurements.
[v1] Thu, 16 May 2013 13:09:56 GMT (1840kb)
[v2] Mon, 20 May 2013 12:43:10 GMT (1238kb)
[v3] Fri, 7 Jun 2013 12:53:15 GMT (1909kb)
It wasn’t until 26 Jun 2013, that Stephan Pomp and Göran Ericsson published their rebuttal on arXiv.
Titled: Comments on the report “Indications of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device containing hydrogen loaded nickel powder”
[v1] Wed, 26 Jun 2013 21:20:21 GMT (237kb)
[v2] Tue, 17 Sep 2013 15:41:34 GMT (280kb)
When Rossi’s testing team published their first report on the e-cat in 2013 it was quickly shred to pieces by every critic who read it because, not only was it severely lacking in standard science protocols, it clearly was just a marketing piece using the testing team as gullible fools. In 2013 many critical articles were published about the report.
Between the 2nd and 3rd revision of the original report by the testing team, Alessio Guglielmi, University of Bath, sent a scathing letter to many people.
His letter was sent to:
With full permission from Alessio Guglielmi we are publishing his letter in its entirety, exactly as he sent it to us, minus email addresses.
From: Alessio Guglielmi
Subject: Ethics of your recent work with Mr Rossi
Date: 27 May 2013 11:58:24 BST
To: Giuseppe Levi, Torbjörn Hartman, Bo Höistad, Roland Pettersson, Lars Tegnér, Hanno Essén
Cc: Ugo Bardi, Dario Braga, Sylvie Coyaud, Camillo Franchini, Giancarlo Ruocco
Dear Doctors Levi, Foschi, Hartman, Höistad, Pettersson, Tegnér and Essén,
I have read your recent manuscript `Indication of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device containing hydrogen loaded nickel powder´ on arXiv and I am very perplexed.
You are aware that several alleged technical mistakes have been pointed out, such as omitting control on DC current input (which has been acknowledged by Prof. Essén in a recent interview) and assuming that the output heat is released by a perfect black body (this assumption is contested by Prof. Gianni Comoretto, for example). The picture that emerges, and I am sorry if this sounds offensive, is that some crucial measures have not been taken seriously enough on a discovery that, if genuine, would alter the history of mankind.
However, I have an issue that appears to me even more important, because it concerns the very essence of your continued activities on Rossi’s device. Our job as researchers is to advance knowledge, and to do so whatever we investigate must be reproducible by other researchers, so that the knowledge we generate becomes established and we can move forward. This seems at odds with your behavior. You went to the workshop of a private individual who claims to be solving half of mankind’s problems, and performed measures on a device that you could not fully control and that is not available to other researchers. Therefore, your manuscript does not contain any reproducible experience. So, how does it advance knowledge? What do we learn?
This brings me to asking another natural question: who will profit from the release of your manuscript? You do realize that Mr Rossi sells distribution licenses and that he needs to convince customers to order some of his plants. There is no doubt that your manuscript will help that market, but is this something that academics should do? Is our job to help a private sell his stuff in the absence of solid, reproducible evidence?
In other words, I wonder whether you are adhering to the scientific method and I wonder whether what you are doing is legitimate for academics. Others questioned your technical ability, but I think that the ethical questions that I am posing here come before, also because they are more understandable by the layman. I trust that you appreciate my frankness, and I hope that you can prove my concerns unjustified.
I am forwarding this letter in copy to several persons who are following this matter: Ugo Bardi (Professor of Chemistry, Univ. Florence, blogger), Dario Braga (Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research, University of Bologna), Sylvie Coyaud (Scientific Journalist, Il Sole 24 Ore), Camillo Franchini (blogger, former Supervisor of the CAMEN nuclear plant) and Giancarlo Ruocco (Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research, La Sapienza, Rome). Whoever wishes to publish this letter is welcome to do so, of course, and I hope that also the answer could be given public form.
Could you please forward this letter to Dr Foschi, whose address I could not find?
University of Bath
Other outspoken critics were Göran Ericsson and Stephan Pomp, Division of applied nuclear physics, Uppsala University, Sweden. They published a rebuttal to the report by the original testing team.
Here is their paper:
Comments on the report ”Indications of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device containing hydrogen loaded nickel powder.” by G.Levi, E.Foschi, T.Hartman, B.Höistad, R.Pettersson, L.Tegnér, H.Essén. by Göran Ericsson, Stephan Pomp, Division of applied nuclear physics, Uppsala University, Sweden
We will only copy the abstract and part of the introduction.
“Abstract: In a recent report titled “Indications of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device containing hydrogen loaded nickel powder” and published on arXiv, G. Levi and co‐workers put forth several claims concerning the operations and performance of the so‐called E‐Cat of inventor Andrea Rossi. We note first of all that the circumstances and people involved in the test make it far from being an independent one. We examine the claims put forth by the authors and note that in many cases they are not supported by the facts given in the report. We present results from thermal calculations showing that alternative explanations are possible were the authors seem to jump to conclusions fitting pre‐conceived ideas. In general we find that much attention is drawn to trivialities, while important pieces of information and investigation are lacking and seem not to have been conducted or considered. We also note that the proposed claims would require new physics in not only one but several areas. Besides a cold‐fusion like process without production of any radiation also extreme new material properties would be needed to explain what rather seems to be a problem of correct measurement. Therefore, it is clear to us that a truly independent and scientific investigation of the so called E‐Cat device, convincingly demonstrating an “anomalous heat energy production” has not been presented in the arXiv report and is thus, to‐date, still lacking.”
- Introduction and general comments
In a recent report titled “Indications of anomalous heat energy production in a reactor device containing hydrogen loaded nickel powder” and published on arXiv, G. Levi and collaborators put forth several claims concerning the performance of the so‐called E‐Cat of Andrea Rossi. Below we examine several of these claims. Our comments reported here are based on the report as uploaded on arXiv (http://arxiv.org/abs/1305.3913v2) and Elforsk home pages on May 20, 2013 (version 2). Any possible subsequent updates have not been considered.
The intended audience of the arXiv report is a bit unclear, but we must assume that the authors have intended to write a comprehensive technical report that contains all the relevant information and data in order to validate their observation of excess, anomalous heat. Judging by the names in the author list, they must certainly have been aware of the large degree of skepticism that surrounds Rossi and his claims. We would therefore have expected the authors to clearly describe not only how they have dealt with the technical details, but also any possibilities of fraud. However, as detailed below, we find the report lacking in both technical detail, experimental and analysis methods as well as in discussing sources of possible deception.
Even though it is pitched as a technical (scientific) report, the report lacks some fundamental technical information regarding the three presented tests, such as:
- A description, motivation and discussion on the choice of measurement methods and procedures.
- Complete electrical wiring diagrams including the resistive heating coils, the control box and the measurement points, extending from input mains, and including ground and all three phases.
- Mechanical diagrams of the device, including geometry and material composition.
- Any data whatsoever from the “dummy” test mentioned on page 17 of Ref .
- We would also have expected a presentation of comprehensive tables giving all the validated, fundamental measurements done in the course of the tests – or possibly a reference to a web page where such information can be found and retrieved.
Since no access to the core of the device was granted, and thereby no real scientific investigation of the core processes were allowed, it is unclear why a group of scientists (including chemists, nuclear and theoretical physicists) should be assigned to perform this measurement. The task seems rather to require expertise in IR and electrical measurements. It would therefore seem more appropriate that an independent agency expert in such measurement techniques were assigned the task; in Sweden the Technical Research Institute, “Sveriges Tekniska Forskningsinstitut (SP)” could possibly be contacted. It would then also seem appropriate to use similar methods and measurement protocols as those in determination of the COP of heat pumps, where, as in the present case, the input is electrical power and the output is heat.
A major problem with this test is the many restrictions and conditions that seem to have been imposed by Rossi on the measurement group and their work. In our opinion, a truly independent test, even of a “black box” device, would mean work in our own laboratory, with our own equipment, with only written instructions (and possibly telephone support) by the “inventor”, with a measurement method of our own choosing etc. The report indeed states that the aim of the work is “to make an independent test of the E‐Cat HT reactor under controlled conditions …” (pg 1). However, we note several circumstances that contradict this statement:
- The first author, G. Levi, has been closely involved in numerous tests and promotions of the E‐Cat together with the inventor, A. Rossi, over the last 2 ½ years. His independence is not as clear as one would wish,
- Several of the other authors, at least R. Pettersson and H. Essén, have also participated in previous demonstrations arranged by Rossi and have then to some degree committed to a positive appreciation of the device,
iii. The measurements were done in Rossi’s premises in Italy with a corresponding loss of control over important factors in the measurement process,
- The “reactor” and its control circuits were operated by personnel assigned by Rossi (in the December test even started before the investigators were given access),
- Measurements were done on (at least) two different types of devices, 2 Ericsson et al., Comments on the report ”Indications of anomalous heat energy production …”
- Estimating the heat output by a combination of IR camera measurements and convection calculations represents a new situation compared to previous tests, seemingly imposed by the circumstances (i.e. Rossi) rather than by choice.
With the “black box” approach imposed by Rossi (due to several “industrial trade secrets”) in the present case, the measurements are restricted to total system energy (power) IN and energy OUT. Performing and reporting these measurements with the utmost care then becomes the one critical task in order to establish the existence, or not, of any anomalous heat production. In the present case, energy INPUT is supplied by the electrical resistor coils inside the reactor; in addition there is the alleged energy contribution by reactions in the nickel powder.
Regarding the INPUT electrical power we note:
- Considering the fundamental and crucial importance of the measurement of the input electrical power, it is rather surprising that the report is quite brief on the details of the electrical circuits and measurements. The lack of a clear circuit diagram has already been mentioned. Other concerns not discussed in the report are the possibility of DC power, the waveforms of voltage and current at various points in the system, the possibility of power through ground leads or other ways that undisclosed electrical power can be supplied to the device.
- Previous tests have reported important discrepancies between the electrical input power as claimed by Rossi and those actually measured by specialists with proper electrical measurement equipment, to the extent where no excess heat production could be inferred . With the knowledge of such critical observations a much more thorough reporting on the electrical measurements should have been provided.
- To be more specific still, since the results of the expert measurements referred to in the previous paragraph seem to have deviated from what was claimed by Rossi by a factor of about 3, which happens to coincide with the excess heat observed also in the March test, we would have expected a clear description of how the risk of such inconsistencies was avoided, and even an involvement of the specialists from the SP institute.
- In view of these severe inconsistencies, the fact that the control unit providing the electrical power was “not available for inspection, inasmuch as they are part of the industrial trade secret” (pg 15) is even more disturbing.
The authors claim “the reaction is fueled by a mixture of nickel, hydrogen, and a catalyst, which is kept an industrial trade secret” (pg 1). In view of the secrets surrounding the reactor fuel powder we wonder:
- How can the authors know there is nickel inside the reactor?
- How can the authors know there is hydrogen inside the reactor?
- In addition, the reference to ”industrial trade secrets” with regard to the composition of the “fuel” makes all speculation about what is powering the alleged reactions meaningless.
Energy OUTPUT is purely by heat – radiation and convection – since no radioactivity above background has been observed in any of the tests reported here.
But these were not the only critics. For instance Ugo Bardi published this:
“Saturday, May 25, 2013
E-Cat: fool me n-times…..
Posted by Ugo Bardi
The E-Cat keeps returning. Initially I had found it intriguing, then sort of fun (also here). Eventually, I had lost all interest in this ever-repeating story of unverified and unverifiable claims.
However, the recent publication on ArXiv of a series of tests on a new version of the E-Cat has generated a flurry of questions arriving into my mailbox. So I figure I could briefly comment on this subject, here.
Basically, the new ArXiv report is nothing new: it is the same style and substance of earlier reports from Rossi. It is true that it has at least a veneer of scientific correctness, but it falls apart after just a cursory examination. The new tests have the same problems of the earlier ones: poor experimental set-up, inadequate instrumentation, lack of reproducibility, and, more than all, the impossibility for external observers to verify the characteristics of the experimental set-up.
If you want to read an in depth criticism of these latest results, you can look at the post by Ethan Siegel of “Starts with a Bang”. If Rossi and his followers want to revolutionize physics, they have to do way better than this.
Now, as I said, the story of the E-Cat keeps repeating itself. This is the n-th claim of success of a long series that has led to nothing verifiable and that has become rather boring. What’s not boring in the story is the question of why these claims find so much resonance with people everywhere. It is important to understand this point, because our survival in the coming decades depends on whether we’ll find good solutions for the problems we face; from mineral depletion to climate change. And good solutions need good science. Let’s not forget that.”
Critics Ethan Seigel and Peter Thieberger posted this article on May 21, 2013:
The E-Cat is back, and people are still falling for it!
Here are a few comments from that article:
“Science literacy is a vaccine against the charlatans of the world that would exploit your ignorance.” -Neil deGrasse Tyson
Well, I guess it’s that season again. The charlatan who claims to have invented a cold fusion device — the same device whose flaws were exposed here two years ago — has just held an “independent test” of his device, and there’s now a physics paper out claiming that this device works, and must be powered by some type of nuclear reaction!…
….What we must do, when confronted with a claim that’s this extraordinary — that we have a device, at low-temperature, with neutral atoms, fusing atomic nuclei — is demand evidence that shows this is really true, and that we aren’t falling victim to some elaborate ruse.
What we need, if we want to take this claim seriously, is solid, incontrovertible evidence that what’s being claimed is what’s actually happening. Because one of the most important responsibilities that science has to society is to protect it from frauds, hucksters, shysters and con artists who would defraud you out of your money, time, and trust with their cheap trickery and chicanery.
I’m taking it for granted that the vast majority of you don’t have the required expertise to tell whether this is legitimate, or whether this is an example of someone trying to swindle you (and all of us) into investing in something that’s meritless….
….So we’ve got to ask, is this test the real deal, or is it nothing more than crackpottery, as Lubos Motl says? Let’s answer the following question: What would it take to convince a reasonable observer that you’ve got a controlled nuclear reaction going on here?….
….So they’re again claiming that this is nickel + hydrogen fusion, which should result in copper. Now, it’s important to know, the last time this was claimed, the nickel that was analyzed was found to contain the isotopic ratios of normal nickel mined on Earth, while the copper (10% of the product) was found to contain the isotopic ratios of copper found naturally on Earth, not the ratio you’d expect to find copper in if nuclear fusion had occurred! (Since only Nickel-62 and Nickel-64 can fuse with hydrogen into copper, it’d be impossible to get a 10% copper product in any case!)
For this test, Rossi disallowed the examination of either the reactants or the products, claiming that it would reveal his secret catalyst. So option 1 wasn’t available.
Rossi also refused to unplug the machine while it was operating! Now, Peter Thieberger (who co-wrote this post with me, and who is a respected nuclear/particle physicist) has demonstrated just how easy it would be to keep power flowing to a device in such a way to fool an ammeter, which is a device for measuring electrical current. In other words, it would show that no current was flowing when one actually was!….
….So, what did this team actually do?
They measured the tube, from a distance, with an infrared camera, to determine its temperature over time. They claim to have set up radiation detectors at a distance to look for high energy photons, but do not include those results. (They say that the results are available upon request. If you get them, please post them in the comments!)
They claim that the input power is well-measured and comes out to an average of 360 Watts, over a timespan of around four days. They provide no data for this, they simply claim it. What can you do; are they telling the truth, are they telling the truth as best as they know it, or something else? Without the data, how can you know?….
…..I’m done pretending that this is science, or that the “data” presented here is scientifically valid. If this were an undergraduate science experiment, I’d give the kids an F, and have them see me. There’s no valid information contained here, just the assumption of success, the reliance on supplied data, and ballpark estimates that appear to be supplied “from the manufacturer.”
This is not a valid way to do science at all. And this is certainly not even close to meeting the criteria required for extraordinary evidence to back up such an extraordinary claim.
I — for once — will also encourage you to read Lubos’ take on this, because he seems to be the only person other than me who recognizes what awful pretend-science this is.
Now that a little time has passed we can ask, who benefited from the first hot cat report?
- We now know that Andrea Rossi used the first report in his patent application.
- We now know that Andrea Rossi used the first report to obtain a SGS safety certificate.
- We now know that Andrea Rossi used the first report to sell his IP and license his phony technology to Industrial Heat LLC. Industrial Heat LLC received their funding by getting 11-13 investors to put up about US$11.5 million.
- We now know that even though the testing team tried mightily to fool people into thinking they were doing “science” no “science” has benefited, no scientific knowledge has increased.
- We now know that the testing team did not answer the critics, and they never proved anything.
Now we have the second report from this testing team. It is as full of holes as the first report. It is junk science.
It is ethical, and scientific misconduct just like the first report.
The second report was put on the web in a blog on October 8, 2014, when arXiv would not allow it on their website.
It is now November 20, 2014, six weeks after the report was issued, with no attempt by the testers to justify their claims in the report.
After the second report was put online, many people, some even friendly to Andrea Rossi and cold fusion/LENR, have written about and criticized this second attempt at – what it is we are not quite sure.
Based on the absolutely mind boggling claims in the second report the testing team should have put all of their information, data files, videos, and pictures online for all to see. We asked for this just days after the release of the report.
The problem is that since six weeks have passed, and who knows how long it will be until they provide answers to the critics, it is now possible that the original data is compromised.
Published November 20, 2014