A legion of scientific skeptics worldwide has for months been asking the question: "Where's the paper?"
Their long wait is over.The latest data submitted for publication by University of Utah cold-nuclear-fusion researchers B. Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann will be published in the July 25 edition of the Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry.
But don't rush out and invest in palladium just yet. The 56-page article does not give a formula for producing cold nuclear fusion - a potential source of cheap, inexhaustible, clean energy.
"However, despite all the criticism the authors have received, indeed the heat measurements they have done leaves no other conclusion than that there is more energy output than input," Louk Bergmans, journal publisher said in a telephone interview Friday from Switzerland.
The paper, entitled "Calorimetry of the Palladium-Deuterium Heavy Water System," contains experimental data and results obtained by Pons and Fleischmann before September 1989.
According to Bergmans, their manuscript was first submitted to the European journal on Dec. 21, 1989. A revised manuscript was accepted by the referees in March 1990.
"The big step forward in the paper is the extensive mathematical modeling," said Dr. Fritz Will, director of the U.'s National Cold Fusion Institute. "And they are presenting many more experimental results - 10 to 20 times as many as were in the first paper."
Last year, the journal was the first publication to publish the experimental data of the electrochemists who announced in March 1989 that they'd achieved a sustained fusion reaction in a seemingly simple table-top experiment.
Doubters, who now outrank defenders, hurled criticism after criticism at the paper and its authors.
But Will said the latest paper is much more conclusive than that published in the Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry or a more recent abbreviated paper in the Journal of Fusion Technology.
"This is much more extensive in its mathematical treatment. It also contains a lot of detail about experimental results, both in tabulated form and in the form of scientific graphs," Will said. "It won't be an easy paper to read because of the extensive mathematical treatment contained in the appendix, published with the paper."
But will it silence fusion critics?
"I suppose we should wait and see. I would certainly hope so, but it is difficult to predict the reaction, especially that of the non-electrochemists," said Will. "I would hope that people would be satisfied about the large experimental body published in the paper. But it will not give a recipe as to how to proceed to get large amounts of excess heat."
Will, who next week will tour fusion labs in Japan and India, is relieved and excited the paper will soon be available.
Its release couldn't be more timely.
The state Fusion/Energy Advisory Council this month will conduct a financial audit and scientific review of state-funded fusion experiments at the U.