"When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change."   —Max Planck


Analysis Of Miley Data
Consequences Of Partitioning The Photon Into Its Electrical And Magnetic Vectors Upon Absorption By An Electron
Nickel Transmutation and Excess Heat Model Using Reversible Thermodynamics - The Least Action Nuclear Process (LANP) Model
Re-thinking Cold Fusion Physics: An Essay
Cold Fusion and the First Law of Thermodynamics: An Essay
Can We Explain Excess Heat Uncertainty With a Law of Physics: An Essay
The Atom's Temperature
Cold Fusion and the Three Laws of Thermodynamics
Review Of Temperature Issue And My Calculations 12/8/15
Theory of Heat I - Non-equilibrium, Non-quantum, Blackbody Radiation Equation Reveals a Second Temperature Scale
Theory of Heat II - A Model of Cell Structure and Function
Theory of Heat III - Nickel Transmutation and Excess Heat Model Using Reversible Thermodynamics

Review of Temperature Issue
and My Calculations 12/8/15

Daniel S. Szumski1
1Independent Scholar, 513 F Street, Davis, CA 95616, USA, danszumski@gmail.com

Email | Author's Response | Calculations

A. Email


Mel Miles has sent Infinite Energy a letter regarding your essay "Cold Fusion and the First Law of Thermodynamics." The editors have accepted it for publication in Issue 125 (the next issue).

The letter is posted below for your reference. Would you like to respond in print? We have space to run a response immediately after the letter. If you are interested, I would need the response by December 11 so I have time to run it by the editors.


Thermodynamics and Cold Fusion

There were several statements that I found to be incorrect in the recent article "Cold Fusion and the First Law of Thermodynamics: An Essay" by Daniel S. Szumski (see Infinite Energy, September/October 2015, pp. 31-33). First, the statement relating cold fusion to "the only nuclear process that allows an end run around the First Law of Thermodynamics" is simply not correct. As clearly stated in my recent publication1, the D+D fusion reaction is thermodynamically possible at room temperature as are many other fusion reactions. The best criteria for possible reactions based on thermodynamics are that the change in the Gibbs energy (triG) must be negative for the condition of constant temperature (T) and pressure (P). This is often expressed as (dG)T,P >0 for any spontaneous process and actually involves a combination of the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics2. For D+D fusion to form He-4 at standard temperature (298.15 K) and pressure (105 Pa), triG is -2.30084x1012 J mol-1. This is certainly a very large and negative value for triG and shows that this D+D fusion reaction is thermodynamically possible at room temperatures1.

The many critics of cold fusion would have certainly used thermodynamic arguments against cold fusion if such arguments were valid. The critics instead used arguments regarding the very slow reaction rates involving the large coulombic barrier for fusion reactions at room temperature. Thermodynamics provides only information about the initial and final states and is silent on the rates of any reactions or on the magnitude of any activation energy barriers. If these reaction barriers did not exist, however, then all light elements would continue to undergo fusion reactions even at room temperature until they were all converted into iron and nickel. Similarly, fission reaction of heavy elements would also continue until iron and nickel were the final products. Szumski could have instead correctly stated that cold fusion allows an end run around the coulombic activation energy barrier. Chemistry does this frequently by the use of catalysts that provide lower activation energy barriers and greatly increased reaction rates, but catalysts only apply to slow reactions that are thermodynamically possible. It should not be totally unexpected that catalytic pathways may increase the reaction rates for cold fusion. In my opinion, the Pd/D system provides fusion reaction pathways that somehow minimize the coulombic barrier.

Another incorrect statement by Szumski regarding thermodynamics is that "The First Law of Thermodynamics requires that we either 1) see gamma bursts or 2) account for the gamma energy in some other way." The First Law can only tell us the total amount of energy that can be expected for a fusion reaction. This Law cannot tell us whether this energy will be in the form of gamma bursts or gamma energy or in other forms of energy.

Finally, the thermodynamic temperature can only be expressed in Kelvin (K). Temperature cannot be expressed as "joules/s or joules/m2·s". Furthermore, temperature is an intensive property (independent of the amount of a substance) while the energy unit of Joule (J) implies an extensive property (depends on the amount of a substance.)3 Therefore, the Joule cannot be involved as a unit for temperature. In my years of teaching physical chemistry at the university level, I have never seen a text book that used anything other than Kelvin for the thermodynamic temperature. The only expression that I could find where temperature is a derivative is T=(6U/6S)V where U is the internal energy (J) and S is the entropy (J/K). This is a purely thermodynamic definition of temperature as the ratio of the changes in the internal energy and entropy of a constant volume (V), closed, constant-composition system4. Note that T still has the units of Kelvin and nothing more.

  1. Miles, M.H. 2015, "Thermodynamics and Kinetic Observation Concerning the D+D Fusion Reaction for the Pd/D System," Journal of Condensed Matters Nuclear Science, Vol. 16, 17-22.
  2. Atkins, P. and dePaula, J. 2002. Physical Chemistry, 7th Edition, W.H. Freeman and Company, New York, pp. 109-110.
  3. Ibib., p. xx-xxi.
  4. Ibid., p. 122.

Melvin H. Miles
Ridgecrest, California

B. Author's Response [w/Changes from 12/26/15 in red]

I hope that I have not misstated my position regarding the thermodynamics of cold fusion. I said:

"The idea that small quantities of energy can facilitate these reactions flies in the face of reason. How can you possibly operate a low temperature machine to produce nuclear fusion?

And yet, as certain as we are that this cannot happen, we have memorialized this concept in the names we have chosen for our very special process: Low Enery Nuclear Reaction, Chemically Assisted Nuclear Reaction. Why not simply advertise it as the only nuclear process that allows an end run around the First Law of Thermodynamics."

This last sentence is my attempt at sarcasm. I'm sorry that it has been misunderstood. You are correct Professor Miles... an end run around the First Law is not possible; and given sufficient free energy [2.3x1012 J mol-1 or more], reported transmutations (G. Miley, J. Patterson, New Energy, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 5-38, 1996.) are thermodynamically possible in a room temperature device. And, therein lies the one cold fusion fact that we must be absolutely clear about. Nuclear transmutations require thermonuclear energies and temperatures. It is our task, to find out how these conditions occur in that room temperature device.

Professor Miles' discussion then touches on the related scientific subject, my statement that temperature is a derivative. I first encountered Max Plank's words "...and this differential coefficient is the temperature, T." (Eight Lectures in Theoretical Physics, 1915, Pg 105) more than 30 years ago. However, it was not until about 4 or 5 years ago that I saw the nuance in what he was saying, but I misinterpreted it. Let me explain.

bb spectra

Consider the equilibrium blackbody (BB) spectra in Figure 1. For each of the six temperatures shown, the area beneath the spectral curve is the BB's total spectral emittance. The total emittance described in this way (joules/m2-s, or with the conversion factor v2, joules/s) is a unique description of that BB's temperature. I have then gone on to show that the same units occur when I take a free body around either of two nucleii in Mossbauer resonance. I called both of these "temperature", an intensive property of matter, while as Professor Miles has pointed out, what I am really looking at is an extensive property, the power, J, existing between two Mossbauer resonant nucleii. In my notation, that power is: v2. The energy is: e. And the temperature is given by Wein's displacement law: v2. I have computed these and related quantities for the E = 0.01MeV thermonuclear ignition event: vy vy; with the following results: Power required, J = 1939 Joules/s = 1.202x1016MeV/s; TR = 4.11x107 °K (solar core); vy = 2.418x1018/s; 1.2X1018 fusion events/sec; Yield = 4.60x106Joules/sec. My calculations are available at my web site: LeastActionNuclearProcess.com.

These calculations show that thermonuclear temperatures and energies are possible in this reversible thermodynamic process. And because it is reversible, this process leaves absolutely no change in nature as a result of its operation. Therefore, its presence is hidden from our observation, and it will be difficult to measure. Our task should be: How do we accomplish these measurements? Professor Miles has identified an important issue with the LANP model.

Additional commentary 12/26/15 - Temperature is an intrinsic property of matter. By this measure it is a property that is inherent to the material itself, and its measurement is independent of the amount of the material present. Density and hardness are other examples. But I want you to understand that these and other intrinsic properties are not absolute. All of them are affected by the samples temperature. However, temperature itself differs from all other intrinsic properties in that it is also independent of the type of material under consideration. And if we look carefully at temperature's intrinsic character, we find that it is actually the power density within the material, and more specifically, the blackbody spectrum in the interior of the material body. We must be clear that this is not the heat content or the energy contained in the sample, These are extrinsic properties that exist just as easily outside the material, and furthermore, they are depend upon the amount of matter present.

So let us look more carefully at temperature, and the intrinsic property that it brings to a material sample. The blackbody spectrum has units Joules/m2-s, or applying the conversion factor frac this becomes Joules/s. These are both units of power. In other words, when we specify the temperature of a material object, we are actually specifying an entirely different intrinsic property: the power density within the sample. And the reason that the temperature is the apparent intrinsic property is because Wein's Displacement Law, vmax = 5.89x1010TR, uniquely specifies the temperature represented by any blackbody spectral distribution, regardless of its material composition.

There is one point where Professor Miles and I are in disagreement. I believe that there is no requirement that "the Pd/D system provides fusion reaction pathways that somehow minimizes the coulombic barrier." The LANP model finds that both the required thermonuclear temperature and energy are possible in the electrode, and there is no need for some undiscovered pathway. Professor Miles thermodynamic conditions appear to be sufficient.

Finally, I don't see any problem in the way that I have addressed the gamma issue. In both cases: "1) see gamma bursts, or 2) account for the gamma energy in some other way" only the total amount of energy is referenced. This is precisely what Professor Miles' argument requires.

I find reviews like that which Professor Miles prepared to be extremely usefull. I work by myself. I greet all reviews and critiques with enthusiasm.

Daniel S Szumski, independent scholar
Davis, California

C. Calculations