LETTER TO INSPECTOR GENERAL
LETTER TO INSPECTOR GENERAL
Office of the Inspector General Commerce Department
We have been informed that you are interested in information regarding cold fusion and low-energy nuclear reactions and the policy of the Office of Patents and Trademarks with respect to patent applications. The following information may be of some interest:
As the director of the first research laboratory at the University of Utah Research Park, I was intensely interested in the March 23, 1989 announcement called by the University of Utah administration (not called by Pons and Fleischmann). The announcement of a new source of energy was most exciting to me. That day I began the plans for trying to be of some help (systems engineering background, missile system specialist for several years). By mid April 1989 we had organized the Fusion Information Center and obtained offices at the University of Utah Research Park.
By July 1989, we had decided that information gathering and the publishing of such information would be our best role. Our first edition of Fusion Facts was published in July 1989 and continued as a monthly publication for several years before being incorporated as a part of the Journal of New Energy, a peer-reviewed, quarterly, scientific journal (abstracted from the first issue by Chemical Abstracts -- the world's foremost scientific abstracting organization).
B. THE ATTACKS ON COLD FUSION
By the fall of 1989 it was apparent that someone had organized and was carrying out a campaign against the new technology of cold fusion. Here are the facts, insofar as we have been able to gather and publish them. Please note that all of this was done in secrecy (except for the ERAB subcommittee).
A subcommittee of the Energy Research Advisory Board traveled to various laboratories where successes in cold fusion had been claimed. If the research was measuring neutrons, they were told that it was background radiation. If the researcher was getting tritium, they were told that it was contamination. If excess heat was being produced, they were told that they didn't have proper calorimetry. Except for one small paragraph in the ERAB final report, demanded by one of the honest members of the committee, the report was entirely negative of cold fusion.
An arrangement was made for someone in the Office of Patents (any type of coercion or reward is unknown) to ensure that no cold fusion patent application was accepted for patenting. Each person, as far as we have been able to determine, was sent the same information: a copy of a newspaper article from the New York Times saying that cold fusion doesn't work; a copy of the paper by 16 Ph.Ds from MIT stating that they could not replicate cold fusion (this is the paper where the authors removed the data showing that they did get a small amount of excess heat).
A person (representing powers-that-be in Washington, D.C.) called many of the physics and chemistry departments at major universities in the United States. Here was his message as relayed to me from one such department: "If you have so much as a graduate student working on cold fusion, you will get no contracts out of Washington."
All of the editors of the major scientific journals were contacted and were instructed not to publish articles on cold fusion. All editors but one then set up barriers against cold fusion publications. The one editor who did not accept that type of instruction was Professor George Miley, editor until this year of Fusion Technology, the international journal of the American Nuclear Society.
An amount of $30,000 (or $40,000 - different sources) was given to Random House to have a "hatchet job" done against cold fusion. The result was the widely acclaimed (by orchestration) book by Gary Taubes, Bad Science, The Short Life and Weird Times of Cold Fusion c 1993. For one knowledgeable on the cold fusion development, it is obvious that this book was a deliberate hatchet job.
In addition to the above well-orchestrated activities, some appointed, or self-appointed, scientists have been very active in traveling to conventions, etc. and doing their best to challenge any positive cold fusion results. Two of these are (were) Dr. Douglas R.O. Morrison (CERN, Switzerland) and Professor John R. Huizenga of University of Rochester (chairman of the ERAB subcommittee, if my memory is correct).
One of the most active protagonists has been Robert Parks, who has some association with the American Physical Society. (The current president of the American Physical Society, in a recent conversation, denies that Robert Parks speaks for the society.) Parks was instrumental in preventing a recent conference from being held in a proffered auditorium in a government facility. Parks has an email list of many people in the DOE and about once a month or more often sends out statements that ridicule any cold fusion or low-energy nuclear reaction experiments, papers, books, etc.
Please recognize that this was a very well thought-out and orches8trated scheme to destroy cold fusion. These were clever and well done operations. We have been told that were it not for Fusion Facts and its rapid exchange of information of successes in various parts of the world, cold fusion would have been dead. That is more credit than we deserve.
C. THE COLLECTION OF PROFESSIONAL PAPERS
The Fusion Information Center, Inc., is believed to have accumulated the world's largest collection of papers on cold nuclear fusion, new-hydrogen energy (the Japanese label), low-energy nuclear reactions, and other enhanced energy papers. We have collected and reviewed over 3,000 papers on cold fusion and low-energy nuclear reactions, read the papers, written reviews, and published the reviews. Over 600 papers from over 200 laboratories in 30 countries report some successes in replicating or extending the original work of Pons and Fleischmann. Dr. Mitchell Swartz and I have presented papers on this extensive review of the literature.
In addition, this office has published New Energy News, for the past six years. All members of the Institute of New Energy receive this newsletter. In addition, beginning in January 1996, this office began publishing the Journal of New Energy, a quarterly, peer-reviewed, scientific journal. The reason was the lack of professional journals that would publish some of the new-energy and new-science papers. For example, we have published six papers about torsion field fluctuations which report on formerly highly-secret work done by over 25 laboratories in the former USSR. This journal has published two issues providing the proceedings of two International Conferences on Low-Energy Nuclear Reactions.
All of this published information (Fusion Facts, New Energy News, & Journal of New Energy), covering a ten-year period, has now been published on a CD-ROM. If a copy of this CD-ROM would be of interest to you, we would be pleased to send you a copy.
D. THE ROLE OF THE DOE
As is well-known, political appointees to government agencies come and go but the real work of the agency is accomplished by the network of civil servants who bear the burden of continuing and exercising the Congressional mandates for their offices.
Here is a summary of the current situation in DOE:
The DOE is required by law to handle the disposition of all high-level nuclear wastes including weapons-related liquid wastes (such as at the Hanford Site, Washington state) and the spent-fuel pellets from nuclear power plants and from nuclear submarines. In about 1993 or 1994 a contract was given to the National Research Council to prepare a study on the best methods for separation and/or transmutation of nuclear wastes. The result was the following large publication printed and distributed in 1996: Nuclear Wastes: Technologies for Separations and Transmutation, Committee on Separations Technology and Transmutation Systems, Board on Radioactive Waste Management, Commission on Geosciences, Environment, and Resources, National Research Council, published by National Academy Press, Washington, D.C. c1996 by the National Academy of Sciences.
It is not known if the contract was awarded with counsel and advice on the expected outcome. However, the end result was a statement to the effect that there is no known method of handling radioactive wastes that is more cost-effective than geologic storage. That has been and still is the major objective of the DOE - geologic storage. Any proposals that claim to have new technology that will stabilize high-level radioactive wastes are rejected. In one DOE document asking for proposals, it was explicitly stated that no cold fusion proposals would be accepted.
Several laboratories, including our own, have demonstrated that there is technology that appears to be effective in transmuting radioactive wastes. None of this work, to our knowledge, is government funded. Apparently, the network of those opposing cold fusion and other low-energy nuclear reactions is most effective throughout the DOE, as well as in the appropriate division of the Office of Patents. It is believed that this opposition group is mainly related to the hot-fusion community of scholars and lobbyists and that the activities are being largely supported by federal funds provided to the hot fusion community.
If you have any questions or would like to have more information, I would be pleased to help in any way that I can, including my personal testimony in any hearings. My home phone number is 801-467-3338.
Best personal regards, /s/ Hal Fox, President, Fusion Information Center, Editor, FF, NEN, and JNE
[Note: The above letter was shared with several addressees and they were asked to use their influence with members of Congress to encourage this Inspector General's office to seriously consider the unconstitutional aspect of the denial of patent rights to inventors. Ed.]
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