Financial and scientific reviews of the University of Utah's National Cold Fusion Institute, requested in order to evaluate the progress of experiments there, won't get under way until next month.
If that soon.The Fusion/Energy Advisory Council, the state's fusion watchdog, this week asked U. President Chase N. Peterson to present names of 16 outside scientists qualified to review the university's nuclear cold-fusion experiments.
The list, to include eight recommendations from the faculty and eight from the institute, must be submitted to the council by July 9. Four of the 16 will be selected by a council-appointed committee to conduct the actual evaluation of the scientific experiments, data and results.
Council Chairman Raymond Hixson said the four must have expertise in physics, metallurgy, electrochemistry and calorimetry (heat measuring).
Meanwhile, council member Joseph Gubler, a Cedar City CPA, will head the subcommittee that's organizing a financial review of the $5 million the Utah Legislature appropriated to open the Institute.
Both reviews were prompted by Hugo Rossi, dean of the U. College of Science, and 22 faculty members, who were disgruntled recently upon learning that an "anonymous" $500,000 donation to the fusion institute actually came from the university's Research Foundation.
The revelation sparked a protest against Peterson from faculty members across campus, including a demand for an immediate scientific and financial review of the institute.
Both Peterson and institute director Fritz Will said they welcome the reviews.