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 BlackLight Power Inc. : too good to be true?
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markie
Skeptic Friend

Canada
356 Posts

Posted - 10/03/2005 :  19:39:28  Show Profile Send markie a Private Message
Here's a site I've known about for several years now and just repaid it a visit:

http://www.blacklightpower.com

The brainchild of Dr. Randal Mills (sp?), it claims many incredible things, like using water for fuel, at energy levels between that of combustion and fusion. The claimed phenomenon - that there are electron orbital levels *below* that of which was thought of as ground state, may be responsible for what has been intrepretted as 'cold fusion' in some experiments.

So hydrogen is extracted from water, and using a catalyst is made to bond with other compounds, with an incredible release of energy, and resultant 'waste' (very stable) hyrdride-like compounds which are *entirely new*, environmenally safe, and potentially very useful to industry!

To top it off, Dr. Mills also claims to unify the very divergent aspects of physics today: Maxwell's equations, Plank's equation, DeBrogolie equation, Newton's laws and Special and General Relativity equations.

Mills also debunks the 'spookiness' which theorists have interpretted quantum physics as having. And much more.

And you can invest in the company! Lots to explore on the website.

Mark

H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 10/03/2005 :  19:44:06   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by markie
And you can invest in the company!
How much have you sunk in so far?


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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BigPapaSmurf
SFN Die Hard

3192 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  04:58:17   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send BigPapaSmurf a Private Message
Its a scam which already has a 50million dollar investment from the US gov if I remember correctly, luckily they still dont read too well. This guy marks very high on the crackpot index, and surprisingly you cant find any of his data in peer reveiwed journals, Im shocked.

"...things I have neither seen nor experienced nor heard tell of from anybody else; things, what is more, that do not in fact exist and could not ever exist at all. So my readers must not believe a word I say." -Lucian on his book True History

"...They accept such things on faith alone, without any evidence. So if a fraudulent and cunning person who knows how to take advantage of a situation comes among them, he can make himself rich in a short time." -Lucian critical of early Christians c.166 AD From his book, De Morte Peregrini
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markie
Skeptic Friend

Canada
356 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  04:58:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send markie a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by H. Humbert

quote:
Originally posted by markie
And you can invest in the company!
How much have you sunk in so far?


None. But if I had more money I would seriously consider it.

But what do you think of the science propositions?

Mark


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BigPapaSmurf
SFN Die Hard

3192 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  07:32:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send BigPapaSmurf a Private Message
Pure speculation at best, supported by little or nothing.

Just use your imagination and you can be just like him, rich and a scumbag.

This guy has already covered his bases claiming to be threatened by "special interests" so when it never happenes he can say he was suppressed. This is the number one rule for free energy machinists.

http://www.phact.org/e/con_man.htm

Im not saying in the furute mass amounts of ernergy wont be gotten, just not by this guy/method.

"...things I have neither seen nor experienced nor heard tell of from anybody else; things, what is more, that do not in fact exist and could not ever exist at all. So my readers must not believe a word I say." -Lucian on his book True History

"...They accept such things on faith alone, without any evidence. So if a fraudulent and cunning person who knows how to take advantage of a situation comes among them, he can make himself rich in a short time." -Lucian critical of early Christians c.166 AD From his book, De Morte Peregrini
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markie
Skeptic Friend

Canada
356 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  08:25:06   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send markie a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by BigPapaSmurf

Pure speculation at best, supported by little or nothing.

Just use your imagination and you can be just like him, rich and a scumbag.

This guy has already covered his bases claiming to be threatened by "special interests" so when it never happenes he can say he was suppressed. This is the number one rule for free energy machinists.

http://www.phact.org/e/con_man.htm

Im not saying in the furute mass amounts of ernergy wont be gotten, just not by this guy/method.



Papasmurf, isn't that how it usually is. Great things are always in the past or the future, while any present work that is out of the mainstream *must* be worthy of scathing ridicule.

Here's snippets from an article that is actually informative. Enjoy!

From

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/9951,baard,11218,1.html

quote:


...

His company, BlackLight Power Inc., formed in 1991, expects to receive in January patents on the energy and chemicals, which Mills says derive from "shrinking" the hydrogen atom's orbitsphere. BlackLight Power, with a research staff of 25, will submit its findings to premier scholarly journals by that time, he adds.

Despite howls from the scientific establishment that Mills is a relic of the "cold fusion" trend quashed a decade ago, BlackLight Power Inc. has raised more than $25 million from about 150 investors. While that's hardly a huge sum in this Internet-crazed era, it's coming from serious money and energy people. Prominent among them are multibillion-dollar electric utilities PacifiCorp, based in Oregon, and Conectiv, which serves Mid-Atlantic states. RS Funds, Eastbourne Capital Management, and executives retired from the top echelon of Morgan Stanley have also put in millions. With Mills holding on to controlling shares, BlackLight Power now is turning away private investors.

"I'm impressed with how Randy's gone about this," a retired Morgan Stanley executive says, "with experiments to test the theory at every step. And the potential payoff is almost unimaginable."

Conectiv senior vice president David Blake concurs: "We're past the scientific verification stage. The talk now is about commercial applications," perhaps within seven years, he says. Blake sits on the BlackLight Power board of directors.

....

He used profits from the farm to cover the tuition at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where he graduated first in his class. After that he breezed through medical school at Harvard University, while simultaneously taking science courses at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The son of a farmer, and a farmer himself, turned out to be an academic superstar.

"It's the American story," says Dr. Robert Park of the American Physical Society. "But he's still wrong."

Park has concluded that the hydrino theory is wrong in his upcoming book, Voodoo Science: The Road From Foolishness to Fraud. Park is not alone is being rankled by hydrinos. The hydrogen atom is the simplest, most common, and most tested element. It's nearly universally agreed that a free-floating hydrogen atom is in what's called "the ground state"—you can't bring its electron closer into its nucleus. Telling physicists that they've got that wrong is like telling mothers across America that they've misunderstood apple pie. It's that fundamental.

"If you could fuck around with the hydrogen atom, you could fuck around with the energy process in the sun. You could fuck around with life itself," claims Dr. Phillip Anderson, a Nobel laureate in physics at Princeton University. "Everything we know about everything would be a bunch of nonsense. That's why I'm so sure that it's a fraud."

....



Dr. Johannes Conrads, former director of the Institute for Low Temperature Plasma Physics at Ernst Moritz Arndt University in Greifswald, Germany, told a gathering of the American Chemical Society in October that he was able to produce "remarkably high energy" from a Mills cell. But Conrads said he thought the energy could be coming from an effect within dense regions of plasma produced through the BlackLight Power process.

Dr. John A. Spitznagel, chief scientist for Siemens Westinghouse Power Corp.'s science and technology center in Pittsburgh, says that several years ago he too was intrigued by energy he was getting from a Mills cell, but that it wasn't enough to pursue at that time. But he remains "in a sort of monitoring mode" should Mills return with further verifications and the more refined approach that BlackLight Power claims to have developed.

Despite many qualms about the hydrino theory, Spitznagel says that he believes Mills "speaks with honesty and conviction."

...

Michael Jacox, assistant director of Texas A&M's Commercial Space Center for Engineering and a nuclear engineer, says he felt compelled to study the Mills cell in relative secrecy when he was a research scientist for the Department of Energy. While at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory, Jacox says he read about the Mills cell and decided in 1991 to perform independent experiments along with electrochemical experts on staff in battery development.

"We actually purchased a total of three large electrolytic cells and conducted very controlled experiments," Jacox says. "We followed the protocols Randy suggested and followed his technique and we got the same results he had," Jacox says. "We were encouraged but we determined that what we had was probably not sufficient to break a news release, especially with [cold fusion] going sour so soon before."

The team began more thorough testing, Jacox says, including side-by-side comparisons of catalyzed cells and control cells, when his bosses suddenly balked.

"In the middle of that process there was a management decision that said we should pull the plug on the whole project and not disclose that we had been involved in the project at all," Jacox says. The team decided to instead investigate hydrino compounds in "almost a clandestine operation."

...

Researchers at other well-known government labs also say they are afraid to speak on record about their interest in Mills's work. One said that he plans to visit BlackLight Power on his vacation time. Jacox says his team found in the materials "an anomaly that we could not explain with conventional theory but that we could explain with Randy Mills's theory. That does not necessarily validate the Mills theory, but gosh."

Jacox continued to be frustrated by the proscription against testing Mills cells, "so I left the lab in large measure because of that."

...

Tests at Lehigh University are interesting, confirms Dr. Alfred Miller, a senior research scientist there who has tested BlackLight Power's compounds. Miller probed the energy levels of the atoms by bombarding them with X rays and measuring the energy of the electrons leaving the atoms—a technique called X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. "I try and exhaust all possibilities and there really aren't an enormous number of conventional explanations" for what he found.

Miller emphasizes that he didn't want his tests being interpreted as unequivocally confirming the hydrino theory, but "over the years I haven't really come across too many things that haven't been explainable. At least if you thought about it long enough and hard enough."

Because Mills has produced freely available physi
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  09:02:19   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message
Woah, I honestly thought Markie was joking.

But Markie, you're right. Every now and then people say something is insane which turns out to be correct. But I'd rather keep my money and be right 9,999 times then lose it and be right once.

Oh, and if you invest in the SFN, I'm sure we will achieve the same results, whatever those may be.

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  09:31:44   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message
quote:
Papasmurf, isn't that how it usually is. Great things are always in the past or the future, while any present work that is out of the mainstream *must* be worthy of scathing ridicule.



All unevidenced claims are worthy of scathing ridicule.

Thats the part you repeatedly fail to comprehend markie.

Seriously, if this guy is on to something, and he can provide the evidence to support his claims, then he'll likely get the appropriate recognition.

Just look at this year's Nobel Prize winners for Medicine.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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Subjectmatter
Skeptic Friend

173 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  09:46:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Subjectmatter a Private Message
Invest in me! I promise to provide more energy and halides than you can eat!
I'll produce halides with esters inside them, special today on ethyl methanoate halides, tastes of rum truffle!
And remember: why would you want halides, unless they taste of RUM TRUFFLE?

I'm afraid no Nobel laureates have criticised my research yet, but they will if they ever hear of it and care enough!

Sibling Atom Bomb of Couteous Debate
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sts60
Skeptic Friend

141 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  09:50:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sts60 a Private Message

Conectiv senior vice president David Blake concurs: "We're past the scientific verification stage. The talk now is about commercial applications," perhaps within seven years, he says.

That was six years ago. But we're right on the verge now, you bet!

Blake sits on the BlackLight Power board of directors.

I feel safer already.

BlackLight Power boosters scoff that they've seen no practical application of quantum theory since the atomic bomb and nuclear power,

Yeah, aside from fission power and fission and fusion weapons, all of which have no impact on the real world, what else has quantum theory done for us except solid-state applications like computers and lasers and handheld GPS units and solar cells and smoke detectors and defibrillators and useless stuff like that?

and say they have little time for theorists who call Mills a charlatan while teaching that the fundamental mechanics of cause and effect are subverted at the subatomic level. Mills's camp responds: Fraud? Let's talk about fraud. Quantumists have us living in myriad dimensions filled with "probability waves" and unobservable "virtual particles" that flit in and out of existence,

Of course, quantum theory - including probability waves and virtual particles - actually makes predictions which have been tested all over the world for about a century, and enabled hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of business a year, but why should "hydrinoists" let that little distinction trouble them?

and they say we may one day slip through wormholes in space to visit other universes or go back in time.

No, that's speculation. It's not surprising that BlackLight's suckers^H^H^H^H^H^H^H investors can't separate advanced scientific theory from wild-ass speculation.

"I'll have demonstrated an entirely new form of energy production by the end of 2000,"

Yep. I'll have to look at my light bill, so I can tell Allegheny Power to switch me over to that clean, limitless hydrino generated electricity.

Great things are always in the past or the future, while any present work that is out of the mainstream *must* be worthy of scathing ridicule.

Ah, yes. The one statement without which no pseudoscientific notion would be complete. But before you get some money and invest it, please remember:

They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright brothers.
But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown.
- Carl Sagan

You can put me on the record that "hydrino" power will always be a great thing of the future, as long as gullible, scientifically-illiterate folks are willing to cough up the dough.
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  10:17:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message
quote:

Yeah, aside from fission power and fission and fusion weapons, all of which have no impact on the real world, what else has quantum theory done for us except solid-state applications like computers and lasers and handheld GPS units and solar cells and smoke detectors and defibrillators and useless stuff like that?



Don't forget the STM

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
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sts60
Skeptic Friend

141 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  11:30:51   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sts60 a Private Message
Oh, yeah. We had one of those in the lab where I used to work. Pretty cool, dealing with single atoms at a time.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
25970 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  11:38:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
Don't forget to check out John Baez's Crackpot Index.

It's people like Mills which prompted the US Patent and Trademark Office to change their rules again regarding models. A long time ago, every invention required a working model to be submitted. Back in the mid-20th century, the model requirement was dropped. Ever since 2001 or so, though, the USPTO requires a working model before granting a patent for any perpetual-motion or "free energy" device.

On another note, I can't think of a single working theory which was ever suppressed by scientists before being accepted. Really, it's only the church and whacked-out dictatorial governments which have ever tried to do such things.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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markie
Skeptic Friend

Canada
356 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  13:07:19   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send markie a Private Message
Ricky, what you said makes me wonder if you play the lottery or such. (I don't myself.) I wonder if skeptics in general, that is, logically conservative people, tend to avoid risk.

Dude, apparently you missed the part in the article which describes that Dr. Mills is very open about people inspecting and reproducing his work? You said
quote:
Seriously, if this guy is on to something, and he can provide the evidence to support his claims, then he'll likely get the appropriate recognition
Right, and in the meantime just ridicule him. Or am I expecting too much of skeptics to suggest they practise a moral ethic of respecting one's fellow human beings?

sts60, please get the context, which was the question of practical applications of quantum technology *since* nuclear power in regards to *energy generation*. (Is that a strawman I smell burning?) Also, note that Mill's theory purportedly accounts for all the things current quantum theory does technologically, and more. Another difference is that Mill's theory is apparently unified, while quantum theoretical constructs obviously are not.

Dave W says, "It's people like Mills..." And the implication is....

Here is what the late Eugene Mallove says in his review of Robert Park's book [i]Voodo Science , the Road from Foolishness to Fraud" , taken from

http://www.infinite-energy.com/iemagazine/issue30/voodoo.html

quote:
After assaulting the main body of cold fusion research, Park singles out for attack Dr. Randell Mills of BlackLight Power Inc. (see Infinite Energy, Issue No. 17 pp. 21-35 and Issue No. 29, pp. 40-41). He says that Mills did not offer "any experimental evidence" for his claims of excess energy caused by catalytic hydrino formation. Park does not discuss the multiple channels of experimental and astrophysical data that Mills has cited to defend his theory. He covers up the serious, positive results that the NASA Lewis Research Center published in its official report on the Mills replication. But Park, at his core, argues mainly from theory: "But those who bet on hydrinos are betting against the most firmly established and successful laws of physics." Mr. Certain asks rhetorically, "What are the odds that Randall [sic] Mills is right? To within a very high degree of accuracy, the odds are zero."
So Dave, I suppose "suppression" is in the eye of the beholder.

(Eugene Mallove, a wonderful human being, was found murdered in 2004. I don't know if they have found the persons responsible. See http://www.eugenemallove.org for a glimpse of this great guy.)

Mark

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sts60
Skeptic Friend

141 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  13:47:10   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sts60 a Private Message
sts60, please get the context, which was the question of practical applications of quantum technology *since* nuclear power in regards to *energy generation*.

That part of the article wasn't talking about power generation. Perhaps the context wasn't as obvious as you think. But let's stipulate that was the context. I answer: so? Do we judge the validity of a theory on the basis of "What have you done for me lately?" It's irrelevant - the article was showing Mills' supporters deriding quantum theory because fission and fusion aren't new? What sort of idiot viewpoint is that?

(Is that a strawman I smell burning?)

Not a strawman. Quantum theory is spectacularly successful and backed up by an incredible array of experimental verification, not to mention entire industries fundamentally enabled by it - not to mention those completely revolutionized by it.

Also, note that Mill's theory purportedly accounts for all the things current quantum theory does technologically, and more. Another difference is that Mill's theory is apparently unified, while quantum theoretical constructs obviously are not.

One hallmark of good science is that it recognizes its limitations. Quantum theory and general relativity are both enormously successful (your GPS receiver wouldn't work right without accounting for general relativity, and would take up a roomful of equipment without quantum theory), but they are not reconciled. Scientists understand the limitations of both.

Mills basically claims he has created a scientific theory without limits - a real theory of everything. If he's right, he can take his place with Newton and Einstein.

But so far, everything to me points to him taking his place along with those other Harvard MDs, Deepak Chopra and John Mack - pseudoscientists at best, outright charlatans at worst.

You just remind me to eat my words when Mills revolutionizes all of science and gives everybody limitless clean power. But I'm not holding my breath, and I'm sure as hell not giving him my hard-earned money.
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2005 :  14:49:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message
quote:
Right, and in the meantime just ridicule him. Or am I expecting too much of skeptics to suggest they practise a moral ethic of respecting one's fellow human beings?


The ridicule has nothing to do with respect. If a person puts forth a theory and claims it to be true without backup evidence, then that theory deserves to be ridiculed. And if someone to proposes a theory without any supporting evidence, while claiming to be upheld to the rigors of the scientific process, does that person deserve respect?

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
Edited by - Ricky on 10/04/2005 14:50:16
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