Cold fusion

1989/04/01 Elhuyar Zientzia Iturria: Elhuyar aldizkaria

Fusion nuclear power will be for many an inexhaustible source of energy of the future. Solar energy, for example, has its origin in nuclear fusion. However, commercial use of this type of energy is far from observed.

In fact, it has always been considered that the beginning of a process that achieves the fusion of atomic nuclei requires extreme temperatures. The only nuclear fusion achieved to date on Earth has been the explosion of the hydrogen bomb. In this case, the heat needed for fusion is obtained by exploding a conventional atomic bomb.

However, in the last Holy Week a great news spread in the teletipos: Cold deuterium fusion has been achieved at the U.S. University of Utah. Those who have achieved cold fusion have been electrochemists Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann. They have not clearly explained how the merger has been achieved, but they have announced that the process is approximately the following: a palladium bar has been introduced into a program full of deuterium; the electric current provided by a battery of cars has been passed during the test; deuteros, deuteric cores, have been stored in the palladium; the packaging has been very compact and has passed through the crystal net of metal. According to both scientists, the energy obtained after the merger has been four times greater than that initially introduced to the system. In addition to energy, tritium and neutrons have been achieved.

Given this announcement the scientific community has been very skeptical and foreign newspapers have dedicated full pages to the subject. However, as Pons and Fleischmann are well-known and prestigious scientists, we can assure you that we will have news from you.

We will try to provide as detailed information as possible about the evolution of the problem. (Elhuyar. In the next issue of Science and Technology we will publish the article written by José Antonio Legarreta on fusion nuclear energy, which is what we expected to do previously).

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