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Raleigh investor Darden still bullish on controversial nuclear technology
Triangle Business Journal ^ | Lauren K. Ohnesorge

Posted on 10/11/2014 8:06:57 AM PDT by Wonder Warthog

Triangle Business Journal

Cherokee Investment Partners' Tom Darden

Lauren K. Ohnesorge Staff Writer- Triangle Business Journal Email | Twitter

Cherokee Investment Partners CEO Tom Darden could save the world.

Or at least have a hand in paying for a rescue, if a controversial nuclear technology device lives up to its inventor’s hype.

The startup he helped create – Industrial Heat – acquired the rights to Andrea Rossi’s controversial Italian low energy nuclear reaction technology in January.

His partner in the venture, Cherokee’s J.T. Vaughn, said at the time that it was about creating a new, cleaner energy source, a technology to “raise the standard of living in developing countries.”

Poll: Could nuclear technology solve the coal pollution problem?

Industrial Heat raised $11.6 million last year, and has been quiet about what’s happening with Rossi’s new energy catalyzer.

Until now.

Darden lets us in on the two words that sold him on the technology: “Air pollution.”

Why he invested:

“I’m serious — it’s about air pollution and coal,” Darden says. “Our company is called Industrial Heat. Our job is to make industrial heat and industrial heat is made by coal… We don’t think any energy should be made by coal, so that’s why I’m doing this. This could be a way to eliminate the use of coal.”

While he acknowledges that no technology takes off without the numbers to attract financial investment – he says he’s not in it for the money. He’s in it for the potential the technology has to solve the air pollution conundrum.

“This might be the answer,” he says, pointing to solar plus battery storage as another technology he’s watching heavily.

What it is:

Rossi’s technology, dubbed E-Cat, is a black box that, according to reports, uses cold fusion to generate large amounts of green energy cheaply.

And, according to a new 54-page report leaked on the Internet, the technology has been verified by third-party researchers.Those researchers collected data over a 32-day time span in March, producing 1.5 MWh of energy.

“This amount of energy is far more than can be obtained from any known chemical sources in the small reactor volume,” the report reads.

Darden calls the new data “promising.”

“So we’ll continue to work on it,” he says.

Darden says his group was not involved with the test cited in the report.

“We built the reactor, but we shipped it over to Switzerland,” he says.

The road ahead:

The E-Cat is not being developed without controversy. A previous third-party analysis of the device, published in 2013, was attacked by critics.

Rossi, an Italian inventor and a convicted fraudster (convicted of tax fraud), has, himself, been the subject of global scrutiny.

But Darden isn’t concentrating on the buzz or the skeptics. He’s concentrating on the mission, he says.

“I don’t care who gets there first, how it happens,” he says. “I just want to see it happen.”

And he’s had several high level conversations about the technology, such as one with Chinese officials on a recent trip to China.

TOPICS: Chit/Chat
KEYWORDS: bollocks; coldfusion; energy; kevmo; lenr
The current owner of the E-Cat technology speaks out, validating the reality of development of commercial technology based on research by Andrea Rossi.
1 posted on 10/11/2014 8:06:57 AM PDT by Wonder Warthog
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To: Wonder Warthog

See also:

2 posted on 10/11/2014 8:09:21 AM PDT by Wonder Warthog (Newly fledged NRA Life Member (after many years as an "annual renewal" sort))
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To: Wonder Warthog
I like the fusion stories but I think you should focus on the work of these players.

Here's another "small fusion" concept that a private company is working on: The technique they're using is called "plasma focus fusion." They're currently rebuilding their experiment to eliminate arcing that was vaporizing their electrical connection and contaminating the plasma. They expect to have the new device up in a few months; they've already moved the connector outside the vacuum chamber, and have successfully used an indium ring and silver plating on the steel baseplate to reduce the resistance to 6 μΩ.

( Eric Lerner's focus fusion process involves creating electricity directly without the need for heating water to spin a turbine. The cost is but a fraction of coal power production, nearly inexhaustible fuel supplies, and totally clean.)

And another, unfortunately their website is being rebuilt, called "Polywell fusion" that's based on the Farnsworth-Hirsch Fusor, as extended by the late Dr. Robert Bussard. They have finished proving that their magnetic containment scheme will work for a net-power-output fusion device, and posted a paper on arXiv:

Also worthy of note are Electron Power Systems and General Fusion both of which are less promising to my mind than either the Plasma Focus or the Polywell. LENR isn't dead, but it's going very slowly. Here's a blog post on the Polywell arXiv paper, which details what they've accomplished and announced, and what remains to be done:

I hope fusion will be solved this decade; I think it's a virtual certainty that if it's not, it will be in the 2020s.
3 posted on 10/11/2014 11:17:21 AM PDT by ckilmer (q)
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To: ckilmer
I've followed Bussard's "Polywell" for quite a while, and am at least "name acquainted" with the focus fusion work. The Electron Power Systems and General Fusion, I have no familiarity with (but will soon....thanks for the links!).

But I honestly think that "cold fusion" will rapidly overtake all of them and leave them all behind. Rossi and Darden are going to have to build a lot of E-Cats to cook all the CROW that the perennial skeptopaths are going to be eating.

4 posted on 10/11/2014 11:54:13 AM PDT by Wonder Warthog (Newly fledged NRA Life Member (after many years as an "annual renewal" sort))
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To: Wonder Warthog

General Fusion is a Canadian company working out of Vancouver that has canadian government backing.

5 posted on 10/11/2014 7:31:20 PM PDT by ckilmer (q)
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To: Wonder Warthog

Here’s one more fusion company. They’ve got funding from ARPA-E and now a couple more investors.

6 posted on 10/13/2014 6:44:11 PM PDT by ckilmer (q)
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