Fusion catalized from graphite?

  • Thread starter CCatalyst
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Summary:
Who would have thought that pencils could create nuclear power? (Besides myself).
My name "crystal catalyst" because I believe that is the best way to achieve fusion. It was inspired by the Pons and Fleishman experiments. Were they actually right? I don't know. But maybe they were on the right track, as having the fusion fuel loaded inside a crystal catalyst that holds the fuel atoms closer together, making them easier to fuse.

Now, watch this.
Now, the erbium and titanium are used because of a hexagonal molecular lattice. But I think those elements are a little rare. So I was thinking of other hexagonal lattices and carbon in the form of graphite popped into my head.

So do you think this could work if this experiment used graphite instead? Also, what would happen if you were to fuse a deuterium isotope with carbon-12? Would you just get nitrogen-14? That would be the best scenario.
 

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  • #3
berkeman
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Summary:: Who would have thought that pencils could create nuclear power? (Besides myself).

It was inspired by the Pons and Fleishman experiments. Were they actually right?
Cold Fusion is on the list of Forbidden Topics for PF discussions (see the Rules under INFO at the top of the page):
Cold fusion and LENR
Also, YouTube videos are not an acceptable source for starting technical discussions at PF (that is also in the Rules). This thread is temporarily locked until you can send me some valid technical references for what you want to discuss. Please be sure that the references are from valid peer-reviewed journals -- you can find a list of such journals also in the PF Rules. Thank you.
 
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  • #4
berkeman
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@CCatalyst sent me a link to a popular press article, which is based on peer-reviewed publications. Thread is re-opened to discuss these links:

https://www1.grc.nasa.gov/space/science/lattice-confinement-fusion/

NASA Detects Lattice Confinement Fusion

A team of NASA researchers seeking a new energy source for deep-space exploration missions, recently revealed a method for triggering nuclear fusion in the space between the atoms of a metal solid.


Their research was published in two peer-reviewed papers in the top journal in the field, Physical Review C, Volume 101 (April, 2020): Nuclear fusion reactions in deuterated metals” and “Novel nuclear reactions observed in bremsstrahlung-irradiated deuterated metals.”
 
  • #5
Astronuc
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Summary:: Who would have thought that pencils could create nuclear power? (Besides myself).

It was inspired by the Pons and Fleishman experiments. Were they actually right?
No, their experiments were discredited, although a lot of people theorized how it might work with Pd, with its particular electron configuration ([Kr]4d10). Certainly, there is an interest in the theoretical aspects. Cold fusion might be of interest for neutron sources, but it impractical for 'energy generation' unless one can separate charges, meaning getting electrons away from nuclei with a meaningful potential or current.

Summary:: Who would have thought that pencils could create nuclear power? (Besides myself).

Now, the erbium and titanium are used because of a hexagonal molecular lattice. But I think those elements are a little rare. So I was thinking of other hexagonal lattices and carbon in the form of graphite popped into my head.
Yes, Ti and Er are hcp elements, as are Zr and Mg, among others. Graphite is not the same structure, and it has Z of 6, as opposed to 22 and 68 for Ti and Er, respectively.
Summary:: Who would have thought that pencils could create nuclear power? (Besides myself).

So do you think this could work if this experiment used graphite instead? Also, what would happen if you were to fuse a deuterium isotope with carbon-12? Would you just get nitrogen-14? That would be the best scenario.
No. Reading the NASA (PhysRevC.101.044610) paper, they are considering d+d fusion, more probable the p+12C, but unlikely in graphite. One would more like produce deuterated methylene (usually an intermediate state) or methane.

From the articles abstract, "d-D nuclear fusion events were observed in an electron-screened, deuterated metal lattice by reacting cold deuterons with hot deuterons (d∗) produced by elastically scattered neutrons originating from bremsstrahlung photodissociation (where “d” and “D” denote 2H)." So, it's not 'cold fusion' and does not involve d+12C.
 
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  • #6
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Well, the reason why I wanted to use carbon was because it is more common. Won't the fusion process release neutrons and won't that eventually split the Erbium or Titanium? Or do the neutrons have too little or too much energy?

Also, I just wanted to point out that just like the P&F experiment, the fuel is loaded in the metal. UNLIKE the P&F experiment, fusion was CONFIRMED in the NASA experiment. But is it enough to be economical?
 
  • #7
TeethWhitener
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Also, I just wanted to point out that just like the P&F experiment, the fuel is loaded in the metal. UNLIKE the P&F experiment, fusion was CONFIRMED in the NASA experiment.
Also unlike P&F, it's not cold fusion. They're irradiating the sample with ~3 MeV gamma rays to cause photodisintegration of deuterons and release of neutrons.
 
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  • #8
Astronuc
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Won't the fusion process release neutrons and won't that eventually split the Erbium or Titanium? Or do the neutrons have too little or too much energy?
No. Stable isotopes of Er and Ti would simply absorb neutrons and emit gammas. Fission really doesn't occur for atoms lighter than thorium. We often talk of spallation reactions (fast neutrons and high energy protons), or in the case of lower energy neutrons (radiative capture and subsequent transmutation by beta decay, or sometimes alpha for certain heavy isotopes).

Also, I just wanted to point out that just like the P&F experiment, the fuel is loaded in the metal.
The original work by Pons & Fleischmann involved deuterium in palladium metal. I vividly remember the NE department fielding calls from people wanting to know about investing in palladium, or asking department faculty for opinions on the announcement. While the faculty were reluctant to take a position, other than they were still waiting for details, I took a position that it was nonsense.

LENR research took off during the ensuing decades.

But is it enough to be economical?
Definitely NOT!
 
  • #9
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Loading the hydrogen isotope into a metal and firing deuterons into it to do fusion reactions is 60 years old at least. A film of titanium over something like silver works well as a self loading target. Bulk titanium works less well because the hydrogen isotopes don't stay where you put them. Preloaded targets are a high tech industry.

This seems limited by all the things that limit neutron generators, except the acceleration is wildly indirect. So from a process that produces too little fusion heat to detect, but useful amounts of neutrons to... a process that when fed with a linac, fusion is barely detectable. They did manage to detect a few thousand events, so congrats to NASA.... I guess?
 
  • #10
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No. Stable isotopes of Er and Ti would simply absorb neutrons and emit gammas. Fission really doesn't occur for atoms lighter than thorium. We often talk of spallation reactions (fast neutrons and high energy protons), or in the case of lower energy neutrons (radiative capture and subsequent transmutation by beta decay, or sometimes alpha for certain heavy isotopes).
You're not suggesting that the atoms in the metal will last forever in the fusion reactor, are you?
Definitely NOT!
Which one? The P&F experiment or the NASA one?
 
  • #11
Astronuc
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You're not suggesting that the atoms in the metal will last forever in the fusion reactor, are you?
No. Atoms like Er and Ti (both hcp metals; there are others) are simply to hold atoms of deuterium (and maybe tritium) close together with the expectation that some will fuse under some imposed conditions.

If neutrons are present, over time, nuclides of Er and Ti will be transformed in other elements. For example, Er-166 would absorb a neutron and become Er-167, which is stable and could also absorb a neutron with a higher probability than either Er-166 or Er-168.

https://physics.nist.gov/PhysRefData/Handbook/Tables/erbiumtable1.htm
Similarly, Ti has several stable isotopes, which would absorb neutrons and increase in A by +1 each time.
https://physics.nist.gov/PhysRefData/Handbook/Tables/titaniumtable1.htm

The P&F experiment or the NASA one?
Both actually. P&F is not practical, and the NASA approach is not economical, IMO.
 

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