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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory...
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Overview - Present Technology Readiness Level of LENRs and using Widom-Larsen theory to guide thermal device engineering - Oct 2 2018

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Ultralow energy neutron reactions (LENRs): are a new, disruptive type of nuclear power generation technology under development in the USA, Japan, EU, China, Russia, Italy, and India. While LENRs are nuclear, they are radiation- and waste-free because they involve many-body collective quantum physics and thus differ greatly from more familiar few-body fission and fusion reactions that produce deadly energetic gammas and/or neutrons and hazardous nuclear wastes.

Japanese government NEDO-funded LENR thermal device nanofabrication and testing project (Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Toyota, and Nissan Motors teamed with four Japanese universities) recently achieved TRL-4. These results decisively refuted skeptics without public fanfare. NEDO also validated application of Widom-Larsen theory, plasmonics, materials science, and nanotech to help accelerate the device engineering pathway leading from present TRL-4 to future commercial and ultrahigh performance military LENR-based power generation systems.

Unlike nuclear fission and fusion --- and verified yet again by latest NEDO results --- heat-producing LENRs do not emit deadly ‘hard’ energetic radiation or produce long-lived radioactive wastes. Consequently, future LENR power generation systems would not require heavy, expensive radiation shielding and containment subsystems for safe operation. That unique feature confers revolutionary competitive advantages. It would enable LENR-based power systems to be vastly smaller and less expensive than fission or fusion reactors and light-enough to be safely utilized in unshielded propulsion systems suitable for many types of land vehicles, ships, aircraft, and spacecraft. It would also allow eventual development of compact, very portable LENR power systems that could compete on price/performance with advanced batteries and fuel cells.

Enrico Fermi's original Manhattan Project CP-1 Uranium fission reactor at the University of Chicago weighed ~ 400 tons and only produced 0.5 Watt (thermal) for 28 minutes went it first went critical in 1942. In 1954, USS Nautilus submarine launched with a 93% enriched 235U pressurized water reactor that produced power output of ~ 10 megawatts (13,400 hp thermal); first fueling powered Nautilus until 1957, after voyaging 62,562 miles. In 1954, USSR opened world’s first commercial nuclear power plant in Obinsk, Russia with power output of 5 MW (net electrical) produced from 30 MW (thermal). Both of these early 235U reactors were operational 12 years after CP-1 (at TRL-4 in 1942). Compared to CP-1, NEDO project devices at TRL-4 presently average 5 Watts thermal and weigh about 100 grams; entire NEDO reactor system apparatus weighs < 1,500 pounds. Given programmatic funding at level of ITER (US$125 million/yr.), there is no a priori technical reason why thermal output of LENR power systems could not be scaled-up as fast as fission technology advanced from 1942 - 1955.

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Overview - Present Technology Readiness Level of LENRs and using Widom-Larsen theory to guide thermal device engineering - Oct 2 2018

  1. 1. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 1 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 Lewis Larsen President and CEO Lattice Energy LLC Chicago, Illinois USA October 2, 2018 Lattice Energy LLC Copyright 2018 All rights reserved
  2. 2. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 2 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 Disruptive hard-radiation-free LENRs are interrelated with chemistry, nanotechnology, and nuclear physics Note: purplish-colored URL hyperlinks provided in this document and all online Lattice PowerPoints publicly posted on SlideShare are ‘live’; double-clicking on link will retrieve source document into another window of the Internet browser.
  3. 3. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 3 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 Ultralow energy neutron reactions (LENRs): are a new, disruptive type of nuclear power generation technology under development in the USA, Japan, EU, China, Russia, Italy, and India. While LENRs are nuclear, they are radiation- and waste-free because they involve many-body collective quantum physics and thus differ greatly from more familiar few-body fission and fusion reactions that produce deadly energetic gammas and/or neutrons and hazardous nuclear wastes. Japanese government NEDO-funded LENR thermal device nanofabrication and testing project (Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Toyota, and Nissan Motors teamed with four Japanese universities) recently achieved TRL-4. These results decisively refuted skeptics without public fanfare. NEDO also validated application of Widom-Larsen theory, plasmonics, materials science, and nanotech to help accelerate the device engineering pathway leading from present TRL-4 to future commercial and ultrahigh performance military LENR-based power generation systems. July 24, 2018, experimental paper reporting Japanese NEDO project’s exceptional excess heat results was published in peer-reviewed International Journal of Hydrogen Energy: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0360319918320925 Data reported in International Journal of Hydrogen Energy paper originates from 2017 NEDO project report shown on Slides 12 - 14: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc- japanese-nedo-industryacademiagovernment-project-nanocomposite-lenr-devices-produce- enough-heat-to-boil-cup-of-tea-feb-7-2018 Unlike nuclear fission and fusion --- and verified yet again by latest NEDO results --- heat- producing LENRs do not emit deadly ‘hard’ energetic radiation or produce long-lived radioactive wastes. Consequently, future LENR power generation systems would not require heavy, expensive radiation shielding and containment subsystems for safe operation. That unique feature confers revolutionary competitive advantages. It would enable LENR-based power systems to be vastly smaller and less expensive than fission or fusion reactors and light-enough to be safely utilized in unshielded propulsion systems suitable for many types of land vehicles, ships, aircraft, and spacecraft. It would also allow eventual development of compact, very portable LENR power systems that could compete on price/performance with advanced batteries and fuel cells. 2010 report for U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Advanced Systems and Concepts Office (DTRA-ASCO) favorably evaluated Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs. Copy of previously undisclosed contract report unexpectedly surfaced on U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security’s digital library (HSDL) website in 2017. Authors of SAIC DTRA report were two experienced physicists: Dr. George Ullrich, then Senior Vice President for Advanced Technology and Programs at Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC); and Dr. Edward Toton, a consultant with long history in defense-related work. Downloadable report pdf at URL: https://www.hsdl.org/?view&did=717806 Ullrich & Toton’s 2010 contract report for DTRA concluded: “Could the W-L theory be the breakthrough needed to position LENR as a major source of carbon-free, environmentally clean source of source of low-cost nuclear energy?” See Lattice document about report: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc-unclassified-2010-us-defense-threat- reduction-agency-powerpoint-favorably-evaluates-widomlarsen-theory-of-lenrs-may-29-2017
  4. 4. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 4 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 “According to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), if LENR works it will be a ‘disruptive technology that could revolutionize energy production and storage.’ The committee is also aware of the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency’s (DARPA) findings that other countries including China and India are moving forward with LENR programs of their own and that Japan has actually created its own investment fund to promote such technology. DIA has also assessed that Japan and Italy are leaders in the field …” Quoted directly from page #87 in 707-page National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 Report released on May 4, 2016: at URL = https://www.congress.gov/114/crpt/hrpt537/CRPT-114hrpt537.pdf Sept. 1, 2018: Proceedings of the U.S. Naval Institute published supportive article about LENRs. Author Michael Ravnitzky is civilian U.S. Navy NAVSEA employee and developmental editor for 454-page 2016 popsci book about LENRs and Widom-Larsen theory titled “Hacking the Atom.” Proceedings article begins, “LENRs offer the first opportunity since the advent of fission reactors to change fundamentally the way the Navy powers its ships, systems, and weapons…. Once the relevant LENR scientific and engineering parameters are more broadly understood and harnessed, LENR energy sources … could power underwater, surface, or airborne vehicles or stationary nodes.” Ravnitzky concludes: “Nevertheless, failure to thoroughly evaluate and develop LENR and its by-products risks missing a window of opportunity for establishing an early foothold and first-mover advantage in a disruptive technology with direct value to the Navy, as well as military, strategic and geopolitical implications … The fundamental secret of the atomic bomb and other disruptive technologies was simply that they were possible. If we wait until LENR starts to appear in international portfolios, or in the hands of adversaries, it could be too late.”: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc-sept-2018-issue-proceedings-of- us-naval-insititute-published-9page-article-re-lenrs-as-disruptive-new-energy-technology-for- military-sept-3-2018 Radiation-free LENRs could be revolutionary game-changer for future military applications. Unlike Uranium fission reactors, absence of radiation shielding and containment requirements could enable LENRs to replace today’s age-old chemical combustion technologies with 21st century green nuclear power & propulsion across a broad range of land vehicles, aircraft, ships, and spacecraft. Nanoparticulate LENR fuels could have energy densities 5,000x greater than gasoline, which would confer decisive combat systems advantages on future battlefields: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc-lenrs-are-revolutionary-disruptive-energy- technology-for-future-military-power-and-propulsion-applications-may-24-2018
  5. 5. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 5 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 2015 - 2018: Japanese government-funded NEDO project advanced LENR thermal device technology from TRL-3 to TRL-4. By wittingly or unwittingly following precepts of Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs, project scientists successfully increased average LENR device excess heat production by ~ 1,000x (typical device excess heat output increased from milliwatts up to Watts) relative to prior best-practices experimental results, thus advancing LENR technology from TRL-3 to TRL-4. This huge gain in device performance was achieved in 2.5 years with expenditures of < US$54 million. Synopsis: NEDO project designed and fabricated nanoparticulate LENR devices that produced 3 - 24 Watts (average ~ 5 Watts) of excess heat for periods ranging from several days up to 45 days with repeatability of > 70 - 80%. These devices consisted of 90 - 120 grams of specially fabricated, purpose-engineered ~2 nm Ni/Pd nanoparticles hosting nascent LENR active sites that were intermixed with ~ 1 kilogram of larger 1 mm ZrO2 or SiO2 “filler beads.” Mixtures of Ni/Pd nanoparticles and filler beads were poured into cylindrical stainless-steel 500 cc reaction chambers that were sealed and filled with 99% pure Hydrogen (H2) or Deuterium (D2) gas. After being filled and sealed, reactors were heated to specific device working temperatures of 200 - 400o C, after which excess heat production above input power was measured over duration of experiments with sensitive calorimetry. See URL: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc-march-2- technova-seminar-in-tokyo-released-more-info-re-nedo-lenr-device-project-march-12-2018 For 15 years prior to NEDO project inception, LENR technology had stagnated at ~ TRL-3. During that time, vast majority of best-practices LENR experimental systems were DC current-driven aqueous H2O or D2O electrochemical cells with bulk metal ~ cm2 99% pure Pd metal cathodes, 99% pure Pt anodes, and various salts dissolved in electrolytes. Calorimetrically measured excess heat production in such systems typically ranged from several milliwatts up to 0.5 Watts (average was only tens of milliwatts; values > 1 Watt were quite rare). Repeatability and duration of significant excess heat production varied widely. Most of the time, heat was sporadic at milliwatt levels and typically only lasted for several days. In labs with best experimental track records, excess heat production of 100s of milliwatts for several days and 10 - 20% repeatability for given batches of electrodes were then considered best practices, state-of-the-art experimental results. Enrico Fermi's original Manhattan Project CP-1 Uranium fission reactor at the University of Chicago weighed ~ 400 tons and only produced 0.5 Watt (thermal) for 28 minutes went it first went critical in 1942. In 1954, USS Nautilus submarine launched with a 93% enriched 235U pressurized water reactor that produced power output of ~ 10 megawatts (13,400 hp thermal); first fueling powered Nautilus until 1957, after voyaging 62,562 miles. In 1954, USSR opened world’s first commercial nuclear power plant in Obinsk, Russia with power output of 5 MW (net electrical) produced from 30 MW (thermal). Both of these early 235U reactors were operational 12 years after CP-1 (at TRL-4 in 1942). Compared to CP-1, NEDO project devices at TRL-4 presently average 5 Watts thermal and weigh about 100 grams; entire NEDO reactor system apparatus weighs < 1,500 pounds. Altogether, these facts argue that future commercial versions LENR power generation systems, which would not require any radiation shielding or containment subsystems, could have higher effective system power densities than 235U fission reactors. This idea is supported by theory, which estimates that local power density inside μ-scale LENR active sites could briefly reach peak values as high as E(J) = 1.0 x 1021 Joules/sec.m3. Given programmatic funding at level of ITER (US$125 million/yr.), there is no a priori technical reason why thermal output of LENR power systems could not be scaled-up as fast as fission technology advanced from 1942 - 1955.
  6. 6. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 6 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 Widom-Larsen theory: no fusion or fission occurs in LENR systems One of two key peer-reviewed journal papers about the Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs is: “Ultra-low momentum neutron catalyzed nuclear reactions on metallic hydride surfaces” A. Widom and L. Larsen European Physical Journal C - Particles and Fields 46 107-112 (2006) http://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/widom-and-larsen-ulm-neutron-catalyzed-lenrs-on-metallic- hydride-surfacesepjc-march-2006 Dr. Rajagopala Chidambaram, who recently retired as Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, encouraged us to submit a subject matter review paper: summarized our LENR theoretical work thru 2008 in Pramana (published by Springer on behalf of the Indian Academy of Sciences - see acknowledgments at very end): “A primer for electro-weak induced low energy nuclear reactions” Y. Srivastava, A. Widom, and L. Larsen, Pramana - Journal of Physics 75 617 - 637 (2010): http://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/srivastava-widom-and-larsenprimer-for- electroweak-induced-low-energy-nuclear-reactionspramana-oct-2010 Unlike few-body nuclear reactions in hot ionized stellar plasmas, supernova explosions, and huge Tokamaks like ITER, what enables electroweak LENR processes to proceed at significant rates at modest temperatures and pressures in condensed matter are many-body collective quantum effects. Many-body collections of quantum mechanically (Q-M) entangled charged particles (surface plasmon electrons on metals or delocalized π electrons on aromatic Carbon rings and graphene) can absorb E-M energy and transfer it to a subset of the many-body collection of entangled electrons via short-duration, nuclear-strength local electric fields > 2.5 x 1011 V/m enabled by breakdown of the Born-Oppenheimer approximation. Field-mediated energy transfer raises effective masses for some Q-M entangled electrons above thresholds that permit direct reactions with nearby entangled protons in many-body collective en + pn  1n+ ν electroweak reaction that produces safe ultralow energy (ULE) neutrons and benign neutrinos. Widom-Larsen theory also provides detailed description of LENR active sites in condensed matter. It specifies reactants and products (protons, electrons, ULE neutrons, and local atoms that capture neutrons), microscopic physics, and dimensions. For a number of reasons, physical size of active sites ranges from ~ 2 nm (on aromatic Carbon rings) up to maximum dimensions of 100 - 200 microns. Such sites can spontaneously form on many surfaces or at certain interfaces; active sites do not involve bulk conduction electrons as a reactant in case of H-loaded metal hydrides. One active site went nuclear; multiple nascent sites + nanoparticles (green)
  7. 7. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 7 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 Neutron production rate controlled by input energy; not multiplicative like fission LENR active sites need non-equilibrium conditions and input energy to produce neutrons. In condensed matter systems, suitable sources of required input energy include (can combine multiple sources simultaneously): DC or AC electric currents; ion currents crossing surfaces or interfaces; fluxes of incoherent electromagnetic (E-M) photons, e.g. ordinary light sources; fluxes of coherent E-M photons, e.g. lasers; and incoherent resonant E-M cavities, e.g. sealed stainless-steel reaction vessels where E-M photons radiate from interior walls. In case of Widom-Larsen (W-L) collective many-body magnetic analogue (of W-L E-field mechanism in condensed matter) that occurs in electrically neutral ionized Hydrogen plasmas, input energy required for LENRs to occur comes directly from spatially organized magnetic fields having mainly cylindrical geometries. Once neutrons are produced, what occurs in and near LENR active sites is long-established nuclear physics. Involves ULE neutron captures on local atoms and eventually mostly beta- and some alpha-decays of unstable isotopes. Nanometer- to micron-scale LENR active sites located on surfaces or at interfaces are intimately intertwined with nanotechnology, materials science, and plasmonics. LENRs produce nuclear transmutation products akin to a stellar r- or s-process that operates in condensed matter at STP and can create simple or complex nucleosynthetic networks, depending on rates and total duration of neutron production (effectively, local neutron dosage). Once neutron production and capture processes begin, LENR active sites rapidly heat-up to as much as 4,000 - 6,000o Kelvin. Intense nuclear heating of sites rapidly destroys local quantum coherence; sites’ mean operating lifetimes are therefore only 200 - 400 nanoseconds (estimated). Brief birth-life-death cycles of LENR active sites can occur all over device working surfaces. If cm2- areas on device surfaces are analyzed post-experiment with SIMS on μ length-scales, elements and isotope ratios observed at various surface locations can vary greatly because local history of active sites (cumulative neutron dosages) can differ substantially from one location to another. In 1994, U.S. Navy SPAWAR researchers used high-resolution, high speed infrared digital imaging camera to videotape surface of a working Palladium (Pd) cathode in an aqueous electrochemical LENR co-deposition cell experiment. In fascinating YouTube video clip (screenshot is shown below), one can directly observe birth-life-death cycles of thousands of tiny LENR active sites: they turn on-and-off in random patterns like flickering lights of fireflies dancing across a field on a summer night - see URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OUVmOQXBS68
  8. 8. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 8 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 According to Widom-Larsen theory and supported by vast body of peer-reviewed third-party experimental data, LENRs do not emit ‘hard’ MeV-energy neutron or gamma radiation; they do produce nuclear end-products (stable isotopes) consistent with transmutation of chemical elements by a neutron-catalyzed process. While deadly hard radiation emissions cannot be detected, creation of nuclear transmutation products can be detected post-experiment with sensitive mass spectroscopy analysis (ICP-MS, SIMS, or best with a Cameca nanoSIMS 50L) that can identify and measure elements and isotopes thereof. If one begins LENR experiments with test samples that are very well-characterized with respect to elements and isotopes initially present, and then post- experiment one observes either very significant 6-sigma isotopic shifts and/or unexpected appearance of different elements in sample materials --- and if external contamination can confidently be excluded --- one can reasonably conclude that a hard-radiation-free nuclear transmutation process must have somehow occurred during such experiments. Rigorous explanation of why LENR neutrons in condensed matter active sites have ultralow energy (momentum) and are almost all captured locally is provided on Slide #21 in following public PowerPoint: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc-two-facets-of-wl- theorys-lenractive-sites-supported-by-paper-in-phys-rev-lettjuly-23-2015 Only small percentage of heavier-mass electrons in LENR active sites will react with protons (to produce neutrons) during short site lifetimes. Per Widom-Larsen theory, unreacted heavy electrons in active sites can absorb locally produced or incident gamma photons and directly convert them to infrared (IR), accompanied by small, variable ‘tail’ in soft X-rays. This efficient conversion is why deadly MeV-energy gamma radiation is not produced by LENR devices while producing excess heat. Such local conversion of gamma radiation to benign IR in active sites is analogous to photon spectrum upshifting and downshifting that occurs with certain quantum dots. Lattice was awarded U.S. Patent #7,793,414 B2 “Apparatus and method for absorption of incident gamma radiation and its conversion to outgoing radiation at less penetrating, lower energies and frequencies” on Feb 22, 2011; see: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/us-patent-7893414-b2 In condensed matter LENR systems, usable excess heat is derived from two main sources: (1) Direct gamma conversion to IR: prompt and delayed gammas produced in neutron captures and nuclear decays are converted to IR (heat) by unreacted heavy-mass electrons present in active sites; (2) Scattering of energetic charged particles: α and β particles from nuclear decays impact and heat-up atoms in LENR device materials. Stable elements are produced as final end-products: because LENR transmutation networks follow extremely neutron-rich nucleosynthetic pathways that eventually terminate in rapid beta-decay cascades down to stable isotopes. This process is illustrated in model pathways of many LENR transmutation networks provided in Lattice PowerPoints posted on SlideShare, such as:
  9. 9. Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC 312-861-0115 lewisglarsen@gmail.com 9 Overview of LENR technology and Widom-Larsen theory of LENRs - October 2, 2018 Direct evidence for Widom-Larsen active sites is provided by post-experiment SEM images of LENR device surfaces that exhibit scattered distinctive, μ-scale crater-like nanostructures. SIMS analysis has clearly shown nuclear transmutation products located in such cratered areas and in nearby ejecta. Researchers have also observed morphologies suggesting flash boiling and rapid quenching of refractory metals (looks identical to results of high-power laser ablation of metallic surfaces). See Slides #59 - 73 with regard to strong morphological similarity between active site ‘craters’ and laser ablation effects: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc- radiationfree-nuclear-propulsion-for-advanced-hypersonic-aircraft-june-13-2014 Lattice recently discovered that there are deep similarities between causal mechanisms for many-body collective electroweak nuclear catalysis (en + pn reaction in condensed matter), enzymatic catalysis, and chemical catalysis. These three types of many-body collective catalytic processes all require high local electric fields ≥ 1010 V/m to function properly; see public PowerPoint: https://www.slideshare.net/lewisglarsen/lattice-energy-llc-japanese-confirm-lattice-hypotheses-re- importance-of-adsorbed-protons-and-high-local-electric-fields-in-chemical-catalysis-june-27-2017 Occasional reports of what are now known to be LENRs have been published episodically in peer-reviewed scientific journals for over 100 years. However, anomalous effects observed in such experiments were heretofore not attributed to nuclear processes because characteristic energetic radiation emissions were totally absent. In 1951, Albert Einstein encountered a young Cornell PhD student with then-inexplicable experimental data: “Einstein’s lost hypothesis: is a third- act twist to nuclear energy at hand?", Mark Anderson, Nautilus magazine, pp. 21 - 29 Winter 2013- 14 issue Nov. 28, 2013: http://nautil.us/issue/7/waste/einsteins-lost-hypothesis

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