Mr. Rossi´s e-cat patent and black box approach
Let´s assume Andrea Rossi is right and the e-cat actually works, and his e-cat patent is sound. We are not excluding this possibility, neither do we exclude it may be a hoax. If it is a hoax it would be certainly the last hoax of that kind. Customers who purchase the 1 MW e-cat will soon find out if it works. Many scientists think it must be a hoax, not only because there is no accepted theory to explain the effects, but also because of the secretive black box approach of the inventors and very speculative explanations of the effect.
We have examined Mr Rossi´s e-cat patent application a little deeper, the patent filed under WO2009125444 and US2011/0005506. The e-cat patent is description is rather general, no specific details are given to the materials concerned. It merely says to use nanometric particles of nickel and fuse with hydrogen under pressure and high temperature, with copper as one of the reaction products. It does not specify further catalysts ingredients. However, at other occasions, Mr Rossi has mentioned that catalyst activity is involved. Moreover, people familiar with the manner know that the precise control of the materials used is of utmost important for the effect of LENR, cold fusion and excess heat.
The international search report has also given a negative judgment on patentability based on incomplete disclosure and speculative nature of the claims.
It seems Mr Rossi is avoiding to give the exact details in order to protect his invention. However, we do see the risk that the patent may be either disallowed on the grounds of insufficient disclosure, or if granted, once the patent is challenged it may be revoked. Then he would have no protection at all.
Competitors may also isolate the nickel powder in the machine, before or after the process, and find out anyway what the exact composition is, and copy the technology.
We believe it would have been better to give more specific details and examples to substantiate the patent, to make sure it is a strong patent – rather than following this black box approach which risks to discredit the whole concept in case of delays and technical problems. Why not consider to disclose the full details and the licence production to other cash rich manufacturers and technology companies, rather than being so secretive. Besides the need to develop the technology further which may be beyond the skillset of Mr Rossi´s team. Then the proliferation of a new game changing technology would be much faster and more efficient. Mankind would thank him.
Dr. Christian Schumacher,
StepChange Innovations GmbH