Electrochemical "Cold Fusion" trials at IPP Garching
Following the report of Fleischmann and Pons, an attempt was made by the Bavarian Bubble Bottle Team to reproduce their claims of cold nuclear fusion. This attempt failed. Three electrolytic cell experiments were conducted using palladium cathodes and platinum anodes in a 0.1 Molar solution of LiD in heavy water, without any signs of neutrons, tritium or gammas above backgrounds, and within 0.3 Watt accuracy calorimetry and no excess heating. Excess heating at the levels of F&P would have been easily detected, if present. Intrinsic tritium, differing from each D(2)O bottle tested, was however observed. The longest experiment ran for 21 days and was an attempt to duplicate the large "melting incident" of F&P. This was terminated on April 28, 1989, by throwing the vacuum-cast 22 gram, deuterium-loaded palladium cathode directly into liquid nitrogen, immediately next to a bare BF(3) counter (backed by 25cm of moderator), in order to attempt one of the Italian ENEA neutron production variants. No neutrons above backgrounds were seen while counting for one hour, and none was seen while the piece warmed to room temperature over the next hour. Post mortem analysis of the darkened, hardened Pd piece showed large crystal grains (up to 2mm x 2mm) and continuing evolution of gas bubbles at the grain boundaries, even four days after the experiment was ended. Eight weeks after loading, the catalytically active palladium piece continued to create heavy water when exposed to oxygen in the air.
Bibliographic Reference: Report: IPP III/149 EN (1989) 40 pp.
Availability: Available from Max-Planck-Institut für Plasmaphysik, 8046 Garching-bei-München (DE)
Record Number: 199010329 / Last updated on: 1994-12-01
Original language: en
Available languages: en