How much will an e-cat cost?

Dr. Rossi has promised to sell 10kw e-cat boilers for home use for 5,000 euro by November, 2011.  This number, which works out to 500 euro per kw has become used as “the cost of an e-cat”.  Is this what the cost will be ten years down the road?

Oh my no!

We don’t seem to understand the incredible powers of mass production and the free enterprise system.  (This, not the car, not “the assembly line”, was Henry Ford’s great invention imho.)  Lets look at how these two work together to bring down the price of an e-cat.

First, an analysis of the current cost of an e-cat.  The first e-cat boilers will be significantly more than an e-cat, they will include everything necessary to work as a home boiler.  This means electronics, heat exchangers, a rather large lead and boron lined box, etc.  Second, as far as I can tell these things will be hand assembled by Rossi himself.  Even if they are not, they will be hand assembled as an automated process has surely not been developed yet.  Third, the components are very pricey compared to what they will be.  Rossi uses a very fine nickel powder.  The manufacturing process for this is rather limited, so it is not very mass produced.  As a result it is quite a lot more expensive than pure nickel.  However, once e-cats are mass produced and there is a significant market for this fine nickel powder its cost will be marginally more than the cost of raw nickel.  The same goes for the hydrogen.  Hydrogen of normal purity apparently doesn’t produce a reaction, however highly purified hydrogen does.  This purification process is surely currently expensive.  How do I know this?  Simple, it isn’t mass produced.  Once big automated machines are producing huge volumes of the stuff it won’t be expensive any more.

Hold it, Bruce, who’s to stop the hydrogen purification company from charging a mint for the purified hydrogen even when they can make it for cheap?  This, folks, (for those who don’t already understand this) is the joy of the free enterprise system.  Lets say I am sitting around with a big lump of cash looking for a place to spend it.  Someone shows me just how overpriced high-purity hydrogen for e-cats is.  What will I do?  I’ll get into that lucrative market.  If I continue to maintain overprice, another player will get in.  This will continue until all of us have more capacity than there is market for.  We will then be given a choice — sell a little bit of hydrogen at a high price, or sell more at a slightly lower price.  This will produce a pricing war amongst the suppliers who need to sell highly purified hydrogen to justify the millions that they spent building the hydrogen purification machine.  That is the law of supply and demand.  It is a “law” like the law of gravity.  It works every time, even though most who don’t understand it can find all sorts of examples where it doesn’t seem to work.  Truth is, with a bit of time it works every time.  It doesn’t, however, work instantly.

So what will the true cost of an e-cat be?  It’ll be just a bit more than the cost of the raw materials involved.  Rossi says that there’s about 50cc of nickel in a 5kw reactor core.  Nickel currently costs about $8 per pound.  Nickel weighs about 8 grams per cc, so there’s about 400 grams of nickel in a 5kw core, or 80 grams of nickel per kw.  That’s about 1/5 pound.  So the nickel cost is less than $2 ($8 * 1/5 = $1.6).

Hydrogen is readily available in water.  It merely takes energy to get it out.  Energy will be generated with e-cats, so it is close enough to free.  So the cost of hydrogen is nothing less than negligible.

The catalyst is still an unknown.  Rossi says that it is a common and abundant material.  For purposes of this estimation, lets say that it costs the same as the nickel.

So the “fuel” of the e-cat should eventually cost less than $5 per kw.  This should, if Rossi’s estimates are accurate (I find him to be more than a bit of an exaggerator), mean that energy will cost about $0.0012 per kw/h ($5 per kw continuously for six months (4320 hours)).

What of the e-cat itself?  It consists of:

  • A metal container which is about the size of a man’s fist for 5 kw of output.
  • A resistive heating element.
  • A hydrogen input tube.
  • An unknown “frequency” generator (Electromagnetic? Audio? Who knows.)

That’s about it.  In mega-mass production, with the Chinese making the thing  as fast as they can, how much will this cost, ten bucks?  Close enough.  So for an e-cat itself, we’ll spend about $2 per kw.  Now output is less than $0.002 per kw/h.  Cool, but factor in that the major use of energy is not thermal, we need rotary energy or electrical energy.  That cannot be produced efficiently.  If an e-cat can run at 300c, as Rossi claims, electricity generation will be about 30% efficient, so energy will be about $0.006 per kw/h (plus amortization on the cost of the generator + heat engine.)  If the e-cat can only heat to 150c (slightly higher than what’s been demonstrated) then generation efficiency will drop to about 20%.  Now energy will cost about $0.01 per kw/h (plus the amortization on the cost of the generator + a larger heat engine.)

That’s why I have been saying the ENERGY IS OBSOLETE.  It’s practically free!

Now to answer the most obvious of questions:

1 – What about Rossi’s cut?  Won’t we have to pay beaucoup bucks to Rossi for his patent rights?  Well, not really, for the following reasons:

  • At some point Rossi will make more money by taking less royalty than by taking more.  Lets look at the extremes.  If Rossi charges $.50 per kw/h, his product will be nothing more than a scientific novelty.  Rossi will get maybe $1 million per year.  If he charges $.05 per kw/h, and the non-Rossi costs are $0.05 per kw/h, the $0.10 per kw/h of heat will have some uses as a heating system, but it won’t put coal or oil out of business.  Rossi will be earning probably $50 million per year.  Not bad.  If Rossi charges $0.01 per kw/h, and the cost of production is $0.02, he now can produce heat at $0.03 per kw/h.  He will sweap the entire heating market, but he still won’t really challenge the electricity production or automotive markets.  Rossi will be earning hundreds of millions per year in royalties.  If Rossi simply charges as much as a royalty as is the production costs of the e-cat, the thing will output heat at $0.004 per kw/h.  Electricity and rotary energy will be between $0.012 and $0.02 per kw/h.  Current world energy consumption is about 150,000,000,000,000 kw/hours.  Rossi’s take, about $300 billion per year.   As you can see, the more Rossi charges, the less he makes.  By charging very little, he will easily become the richest man ever.
  • If Rossi over-charges on royalties seriously hampering the development of his technology countries that have little respect for patent law, such as China, and many African nations, will get an incredible economic boost.  While this will challenge the first world, it will not particularly slow down the spread or low price tag on e-cat energy.
  • Whether Rossi over-charges or not, there will be all manner of exploration into other ways of generating LENR.  They will be found, and they will find ways of circumventing Rossi’s patents.
  • Patents only have an 18 year lifespan.  In the scheme of things, that’s not very much.  In fact it’ll take all 18 of those years for the e-cat to become the dominant energy source.  After that, Rossi’s royalties will only apply to any patentable improvements he makes on his technology.  The royalty he gets from these will be limited to the amount of improvement they make on the “public domain” version (current version) of the e-cat.

2 – What about the price of Nickel? Won’t it go through the roof?  Well, not yet.  Lets say that tomorrow the world started using e-cats to produce 150,000,000,000,000 kw/hours of energy, enough to maintain our current lifestyle.  Well, according to Rossi, 0.00005 pounds of nickel produces 1 kw/h.  So the consumption rate of nickel will be about 350,000 tons per year.  Current nickel consumption is 1,500,000 tons.  So nickel consumption would jump by about 25%.  This is hardly enough to freak out the price of nickel.  Nickel is one of the most abundant metals.  There are significant untapped reserves.  We’ll be using A WHOLE LOT more energy before we suffer from significant nickel price increases.  That said, by time we have our personal flying machines, by time we each have a greenhouse that grows all of the crops we need with artificial light, by time we have found every way of exploiting this cheap power, we’ll probably get there.

3 – How fast will the price drop?  This is the million dollar question.  The price will drop under the influence of market forces.  I forecast that the per kw/h price will be 50% in two years.  It’ll be 10% in 5.  It’ll be 1% in 10.  My forecast is that the price will bottom out in about 20 years when factors like nickel supply start to take effect.  (Please note that weather forecasters aren’t perfect either.)

3 – Why is it worth knowing this?  If we don’t have a clear grasp of the market forces, if we don’t have a sense of  how the price of the e-cat will drop with time, we will be very poor at predicting the effect of the e-cat on the future.  If our predictions are all wrong, our planning for the future will be just as wrong.

Have I got it right?  Nope.  Have I got it figured closer than you do?  Well, that depends on whether you recognize the powers of mass production and the law of supply and demand.  If you are sure that I’ve got it wrong, please show me so that my planning for the future can be improved.

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60 Responses to “How much will an e-cat cost?”

  1. Brad Arnold Says:

    Nickel is a “transition” element. Therefore, it is possible that when LENR is understood iron (Fe) will have tremendous energy density (like Ni’s half a million times the energy density of oil) too!

    Great article. Can’t wait for LENR to go mainstream, because then corporation will start incorporating it into their products (like cars, ships, portable generators, desalination plants, etc.).

    • Anthony Scalzi Says:

      I have no doubt that once the mechanism of the Ni-H reaction is understood and fully characterized, that it will be adapted to work with other metals especially iron for its abundance.

  2. Bob Norman Says:

    Very good analysis of the situation. The amount of Nickel required has grown from what I first remember. I think that as the process is better understood and more precise controls are put in place, the amount of Nickel required per unit of energy will decrease, which will help mitigate the expanding need for Nickel. I would also anticipate new material being found that gives the same affect.
    There are huge deposits of Nickel in the asteroid belt, potentially that can be mined to extend the capacity available, but that’s way down the road.
    One of the issues is how much Hydrogen is needed for 6 months of operation. Presently Rossi loads the chamber manually. There was a number given on Hydrogen usage a while back, but I don’t recall the number. I remember thinking at the time that Hydrogen will be needed to be added periodically to keep things running. How this is done for things like home units is still an issue. I’m assuming that small hydrogen bottles will be attached to the Heating units and they will need to be periodically refilled.
    It would be great if it would be as easy as going to a local Kiosk and filling you Hydrogen bottle. Maybe the Fuel trucks that deliver today could also keep your hydrogen bottles filled. Maybe the do both for a while, with fuel oil going away over time. The cost profit difference in this will be huge to the supplier.
    The numbers presented seem as good as any considering all the unknowns.

  3. G Singh Says:

    Good upbeat article. Other costs to consider are the cost of the electronics, maintenance and servicing of unit and customer support etc.

    Hopefully after the science is understood something with a higher melting point can be used as the powder and allow a higher temperature and pressure yield for the output steam. This would allow the e cat to directly replace coal, diesel, gas and fissionable nuclear an as energy source to drive power plant turbines. That would be SWEET.

  4. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    The drug companies have perfected the maximization of profit potential of a patented product. Drug companies routinely charge thousands of times the cost of production. The drug usually doesn’t get cheap until after the expiration of the patent when it goes generic.

    If Rossi fails to get a US patent, he would be better off forming an energy company, where he could protect his industrial secret.

    Edison and Westinghouse initially owned their own power plants and grids.

    • brucefast Says:

      I think that there is a huge difference between the drug companies and the e-cat.

      Firstly, usually a drug impacts a relatively small population. Lowering the price, therefore, doesn’t necessarily have a dramatic increase on the scope of the drug.

      Secondly, an effective drug is one that does a better (sometimes only) job of treating a given condition. So now the customer’s motivation is greater than financial, the customer wants the “better”. This is very different from the e-cat whose only real advantage is that it is cheaper. (It is true that a car that doesn’t need refueling as often is “better” than a car that goes for a year without needing a refill, but this factor isn’t enough to motivate most people to become customers.)

      Thirdly, most expensive drugs are paid for by insurance companies. In this relationship the desire of the customer is quite disconnected from the cost. If the customer doesn’t clearly feel the high price of a drug, the fact that it will make his life “better” becomes a much more powerful motivation than the fact that it may ultimately cost him indirectly (like through higher insurance rates.)

      I therefore think that the fact that drug companies charge a mint for meds is pretty much irrelevant to the question of what royalty would be most effective for Dr. Rossi.

  5. James Says:

    This will revolutionize the world! Do you realize the savings a large manufacturing plant will achieve via E-Cat? The cost of every plant manufactured product will drop dramatically over the follow decade after the E-Cats introduction!
    The U.S. economy, provided U.S. companies adapt quickly, will possibly become a global force again by being able to offer much more competitive prices on their product as well as much more competitive wages to their worker increasing everyone’s quality of life!
    The only businesses that will go in the opposite direction are the eye gougers in the oil market as there will be a rather sizable shift in wealth, sending some once very wealthy oil tycoons much further down the Forbes 500, if not off of it altogether!
    If this proves to be a feasible energy production platform, it will almost instantaneously change the market and business models globally! This could be another “One Small Step for Man, One Huge leap for Mankind!” Well done Rossi!

  6. Brad Arnold Says:

    By the way, for a foreshadowing of how political conservatives will react to the e-cat, read this from the National Review Online:

    Of course their first reaction is: “This can’t be serious.” But then notice the knee jerk reaction: “As a thought experiment, it’s worth thinking through what might happen to the wold if “production costs for anything” were to markedly decrease. Might labor-intensive manufacturing in emerging economies take a hit? And if so, will this contribute to large-scale political unrest? Moreover, resource extraction is not just important to OPEC: Norway, Australia, Canada, and the United States, among many other countries, might see a pronounced internal shift of economic and political power.”

    Notice the emphasis on what would “take a hit?” Also, notice the preoccupation with “resource extraction?” Finally, the concern with “internal shift(s) of economic and political power?” Count on the oligarchy beating the conservative’s war drums inside their bubble world where up is down. Frankly, it is very depressing that so many people could be so completely fooled and made into tool to protect the super-rich (even though the e-cat and LENR will make the economic pie much larger for everyone).

  7. Roger Bird Says:

    Brad Arnold, your bigotry is showing. I am a card carrying conservative. You talk as though a conservative is a different species hiding in a human skin.

    With E-cat, I am still undecided. I hope Rossi is right and makes a freaking bundle. It will change the world. I could buy an e-cat and say good bye to the utility company.

    There is still in my mind the thought that it could be too good to be true. I also don’t understand why Rossi doesn’t just start his own electric utility. Money talks very loudly. Conventional talk is an entertaining form of hot air.

    Roger Bird

    • Brad Arnold Says:

      Roger Bird, OK you caught me, I am really turned off by what has been called the “echo chamber” that has evolved in US conservative politics. Frankly, I love “real” conservatives like (of all things) Richard Nixon. Those old conservatives would be booted out of today’s GOP. We can argue opinions, but we ought not disagree on facts. The GOP has become nothing less than a vehicle of the oligarchy – totally owned and operated by the big money corporate and big-business donors. It makes me want to cry (by the way, I am a “moderate”).

  8. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    The dictionary definition of conservative and liberal has nothing to do with political conservatives and liberals. “Liberals” are the enemy of liberty. “Libertarians” are the true defenders of liberty.

    The status quo is big government. Most conservatives, including myself, want minimal government. It’s the libs that want to preserve the status quo. I predict that the windmill hugging greenies will resist the ecat more the drill-drill-drill crowd.

    The ecat will greatly reduce the need for government. Government will have to figure out how to finance road construction…..maybe go to toll roads. Personally, I’m looking forward to flying my steam powered helicopter.

    With no grid, big-brother will have trouble keeping tabs on the masses.

  9. Bob Norman Says:

    LENR technology will kill Solar and wind and it can’t happen too soon. Both technologies are not really viable replacements for oil, this technology is. Yes, there will be huge political upheavals as a result of this technology, but it will occur over a number of years and if planed for properly it can be managed. Typically governments don’t do well at doing the right thing, so I’m expecting some major push back for various directions. Eventually though, technology rules and change marches forward.

  10. Roger Bird Says:

    I am loving this discussion. I find the analysis of what will happen if the e-cat works to be insightful and interesting. With regard to insight and interest, the analysis of what will happen if it works seems to surpass the analysis of whether the thing actually works or not. I see too much taking too many people’s word for stuff. For example, Rossi said that he sold his house to fund the 1Mw project. But no one seems to have confirmed that. There are too many of these taking someone’s word for it so that I tend to be about ten degrees toward the skeptical side (out of 180 degrees). And perhaps I am a little afraid to believe for fear of being disappointed.

    • brucefast Says:

      “the analysis of what will happen if it works seems to surpass the analysis of whether the thing actually works or not.” That is the point of this site. There are plenty of other sites where self-appointed experts are pontificating about why the the e-cat works, or doesn’t work. Time will settle this question.

      Once the world is convinced that it does work, assuming it does, the world will suddenly want to know what difference it will make in the real world. This site is trying to be ahead of the pack on that question.

  11. Roger Bird Says:

    Brucefast, I am sure that I am generalizing to all comments that I see on the Internet. This particular blog of “How much will an e-cat cost?” is brilliant and fascinating.

  12. Bob Norman Says:

    I’m curious if there are any plastic experts reading this. How feasible is it to use injection molded plastic for the ecat. Will it stand up to the temperatures and pressure? If this works they could be stamped out cheaper with less weight. Just a thought.

  13. Mini-ciclot. 24.10.2010 » Ocasapiens - Blog - Says:

    […] ci arrivi, gli aerei non essendo autorizzati a trasportare centraline nucleari. Entro novembre, saranno in vendita a 5.000 euro l’uno i boiler nucleari E-cat da 10 kw. Prima di progettare regali di Natale, […]

    • brucefast Says:

      English Translation via Google Translate:
      […] You get there, the planes being allowed to carry nuclear units. By November, will be on sale at 5,000 euros a cat-and nuclear boilers from 10 kW. Before designing Christmas gifts, […]

    • brucefast Says:

      Unfortunately, Mini-ciclot, Rossi seems to have changed his mind about releasing a 5,000 euro “home unit”. He now says that it’ll take “about a year”. I really want one, and am quite disappointed with this news.

      Purtroppo, Mini-ciclot, Rossi sembra aver cambiato idea circa il rilascio di una “unità abitativa” 5.000 euro. Lui ora dice che ci vorrà “un anno”. Ho molta voglia, e sono piuttosto deluso da questa notizia.

      • Bob Norman Says:

        You might want to put in an order with Defkalion and see what their response is. It would be interesting to see if they mention any plans for Western Hemisphere activity.

      • Brad Arnold Says:

        This expert seems to think regulators will strongly resist allowing home e-cats, because the effect would be highly destabilizing to our economy.

        My analysis is that Rossi always wanted to pursue a top down strategy of introduction – first industrial centralized power generation, and only later decentralized home use. On the other hand, Defkalion always sought a multi-level approach, offering both industrial and home units.

        By the way, it appears like I was correct and Defkalion took Rossi’s technology and ran with it. They seem to be ready to open shop with certified units for sale in the EU. Good, competition is our insurance that governments won’t try to protect the status quo by regulating the e-cat “problem” away.

      • Bob Norman Says:

        I think the Genie is out of the bottle and they will not be able to contain the spread. Sure, they may try and regulate it to slow it down, but stopping this would be like holding back the tides. There is enough known, that the secrets will soon be known by all. Some countries will embrace the technology and others will have to follow to compete. The government wants green, but this isn’t what they envisioned. Solar and wind support the grid and the existing structure, keeping taxes flowing. This technology will kill the grid, kill gas stations, the tax base that is relied on will go away. The government wants green technology as long as its their kind of green.
        They will soon switch and tax miles driven, not the tax on gasoline. They will have to be innovative will electricity and things.

      • brucefast Says:

        Bob, I wish I had your confidence that the genie is out. I don’t think it is yet. Brad, while it won’t significantly affect the e-cat if the first world countries resist its spread, it will hurt the first world countries. How can America, for instance, compete with the Chinese when the Chinese have virtually free energy? The harder the first world resists, the more surely they will end up being called the “old world” instead.

        Hopefully they’ll be smart enough to figure that out. However, high intelligence has not been the response so far to the economic turmoil.

  14. Bob Norman Says:

    Rossi tossed out a few numbers today on his blog. He said the MW system consumed 10,000 grams of Nickel every 189 days. Based on that number we have another way to calculate cost.

    (10,000 g/ 463.6 g/lb) x $8 per pound /1000000 = $0.0001725 $/W

    Assume the catalyst is 2x as Bruce used the cost is $0.0003450 $/W

    Therefore a KW = $.35 for 6 months
    5KW = $1.75

    This seems incredible, but matches Bruce’s numbers quite well, as the number given was much less nickel than what Bruce was using.

    I’m generous to pay the higher price, as the costs are incredible and point out the future of the technology.

    Rossi also said over 180 days the MWatt plant would consume 18,000 grams of Hydrogen.

    Unit usage: 18,000/50 = 360 grams unit per 180 days

    That’s 2 grams a day, for home units he must add fuel automatically?
    2 g = 22.2 L

    • Roger Bird Says:

      Bob, are you sure that his commas aren’t our periods.

      Also, I can’t imagine needing a 10Kw generator in my basement. 2Kw would be far more than I would need. And it seems attractive to imagine selling electricity back to the utility company, but remember that if the e-cat actually works, energy will become very cheap. So why buy a 10Kw when all you need is a 2Kw. Right now, I think I am around 1Kw in our home.

      • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

        I always heard that the average home required a minimum of 10 KW. The article claims you more than 20 KW.

      • brucefast Says:

        Let me caution you on the kw thing. The e-cat produces heat, not electricity. The best that can be expected from heat to electricity conversion is 30%. Therefore if you need 2kw of electricity, you need at least 6kw of heat.

      • Roger Bird Says:

        Thank you, brucefast. The clears that up. I had no idea the conversion factor was so low.

      • Bob Norman Says:

        Roger, pretty sure the commas aren’t periods. The numbers are close with Bruce’s numbers considering the reduction in the Nickel per unit used.
        Any sized Home unit can be built, this was just a set of numbers further advance the understanding.
        I would like to have as big of unit as I could afford. Stay toasty warm and use all the electricity I want.
        When cars can use this technology, I predict cars will get big and luxurious as gas costs will not be an issue.

  15. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    This Adsorption Chiller looks to be an ideal application for the E-Cat.
    Looks like it’s too cumbersome for home use.

  16. theotherguy Says:

    It will cost just under what the equivalent oil/gas/coal device/grid access costs.

    • brucefast Says:

      That will be the price if it is single-sourced. However, if there are multiple manufacturers, the price will be just enough for the most efficient of them to make a profit.

      • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

        Didn’t Rossi predict the price would fall to $100/kw with mass production?

      • brucefast Says:

        Once million-unit mass production sets in, I am sure Rossi’s estimate is correct. However, once billion-unity mass production sets in, once there are a dozen suppliers of e-cats (possibly paying Rossi a royalty), the price will be driven by very simple market forces.

        In any case, $100 per kw is less than all that. Remember, that is 1 kw * 6 months before a recharge is called for, that $100 per 4,000 kw/h, or $0.025 per kw/h. However, its not the e-cat that has a 6 month life, only the fuel. The fuel must surely be cheaper than an entire unit. So we recharge the fuel for $25, and the next 6 months costs $0.006.

      • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

        I bet within 15 years there will be many competing designs,
        some not using Rossi’s catalyst.

      • brucefast Says:

        Very good bet.

  17. Bob Norman Says:

    I see that Rossi has mentioned that his fuel cost are 1 Euro for 1 Mwh of operation. if you go by that then a year is 1 x 24 x 365 = 8760 Euros per year to run the 1 MW system
    A little higher than our first numbers, but still very good.

    Rossi also said that he might sell the core and let others manufacture their products. It will be very interesting to see what price they bring. I think this is a great business move.

    • brucefast Says:

      1 Euro per Mw/h is .001 Euro per kw/h. This is rather close to our calculation. By time its turned to electricity it’ll be .003 Euro per kw/h. And mass production will make all of the products cheaper — the nano-dust process for nickel will be cheaper. The “pure” hydrogen process will be cheaper. The cores, and associated hardware will all be cheaper. Nobody can match $.005 per kw/h for electricity. The electric company cannot pipe free electricity to your home at that price. All other forms of big energy are obsolete.

      • Bob Norman Says:

        There have been many mentions of cost, but they all seem to come back to half a penny or less. With these type of cost structures the Grid and its support just will not be cost effective for power companies. The impact on the economy and society will be interesting to watch unfold. The unintended consequents to events like these are so hard to predict.

      • brucefast Says:

        Yes, however it will take a while to build up to that point, maybe a decade. Once the future is seen by all, development of new grid will come to a halt. However, electric companies will be able to spool up e-cats more cheaply and easily than homes can. (A home unit with steam or stirling engine, generator, electronic controls, etc. will cost thousands.) So one of the last energy infrastructure to be abandoned will be the existing grid.

      • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

        I agree. The grid will have an economic future life of 20 or so years. If Big Brother intervenes, it may have a longer life, just to perpetuate Big Brother’s control and taxing power. Individuals will be freer to move to the boonies, off the grid. The populace will revolt. Libertarians will rule.

  18. Jim Says:

    Just wondering if anyone has considered a design for how the e-cat will replace the water heater and work with existing furnaces.

    Will the ecat pump heat a hot water reservior that used for both heating the house and providing hot water? Will we have to use electric pumps to provide pressure? Or will we just have cold water lines going into the ecat, and that’s what provides the pressure?

    If the latter, then how would it work when we turn off the hot water or turn it back on?

    I can see it would be relatively simple to heat an entire house with water pipes, just by continually running the hot water throughout the entire system. But that would require at least one water pump, right? But how complicated will it be to convert a house using forced air?

    I’m wondering how quickly mfrs will jump on converting furnaces and water heating systems to work with the ecat.

  19. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    I assume that the home eCat will be thermostatically controlled, to supply heat only when needed.

    To convert from a forced air system, use an Apollo type system which pumps hot water through a radiator/heat-exchanger through which the air handler blows cool air through the heat-exchanger and once heated, throughout the house.

    Later on, a 50 kw eCat will produce all the electricity and hot water a modern home requires.

    • Roger Bird Says:

      My current furnace is loud. The sound is sort of obnoxious, since I sleep in my basement. An E-Cat “furnace” would be much quieter. It would involve only a fan.

  20. Jim Says:

    “Later on, a 50 kw eCat will produce all the electricity and hot water a modern home requires.”

    That brings up another question. Considering that homes use electricity pretty much all day and night, but do not constantly heat the house or use hot water, it seems unlikely that the solution will be to thermostatically control the ecat.

    But I also like the idea of eliminating the need for a blower (except in air conditioning), and just letting x amount of heat be pumped through the house constantly. Hopefully the percentage could be controlled thermostatically as well. But this is really a heating design issue.

    • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

      If you have central A/C, you already have a blower. You just insert a hot-water heat exchanger downstream from the A/C blower.

      A more comfortable but more expensive method would be to install hot-water coils in the floor, or you can install radiators throughout the house.

    • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

      “Considering that homes use electricity pretty much all day and night, but do not constantly heat the house or use hot water, it seems unlikely that the solution will be to thermostatically control the ecat.”
      The thermostat could divert excess heat to your pool or greenhouse.
      Since a 50kw eCat would likely contain multiple reactors, the thermostat could shut down some of the reactors.

  21. Roger Bird Says:

    I couldn’t sleep early this morning because of this: If the home model for an E-Cat (cost: $8,000) puts out 10kW, then it would provide enough electricity and heat for my household plus enough electricity for two other households my size (if I were to sell it back to the local utility). This would be a savings of $150 for me and two times $60 for the excess electricity. Of course, there would be no need to set aside heat generation for the house because waste heat would sufficient. That would mean that buying one of these would garner me $270 per month. This means that it would pay for itself in 29.6 months, or 2.5 years. It is possible that my nuts would be removed for that by my wife. However, after 2.5 years, it would be pure profit. The price needs to come down for me to consider buying one. I have always been very fond of my ‘nads. (:->)

    • brucefast Says:

      I think you are jumping ahead a bit here.

      First, you need to generate electricity from the heat. At 300c (if the e-cat will get that hot) you’ll be hard pressed to get to 30% efficiency. So that 10kw will only produce 3kw of electricity. (You’ll still be able to farm the excess heat to heat your home.)

      Second, the steam engine will be hard to get and not cheap. Generators that can pump their electricity into the grid are significantly more expensive than stand-alone generators. You’d better assign at least another $6,000 for that equipment.

      Third, once the e-cat becomes established (you likely won’t be able to buy one before that) the price of all energy will drop. You won’t be competing against current rates.

      Fourth, all of the equipment, especially the e-cats and steam engines will see a significant early price slide. Waiting an extra year or two will see the cost diminish by 50%.

      Bottom line? Early adoption will not be economically lucrative. It’ll make sense in a cabin in the woods. It’ll make sense for large power companies that already are running diesel generators. It’ll make much more sense for those who already have boiler heat, who can seriously implement a 5 to 10 watt heating capacity. Beyond that, if cheap is your target, you’ll do better by waiting just a few years.

      • Iggy Dalrymple Says:

        Today on Rossi’s blog, an alleged employee of WhisperGen, a New Zealand manufacturer of Sterling engine powered generators contacted Rossi.
        Andrea Rossi
        November 19th, 2011 at 2:49 AM

        Dear Icarus:
        OK, send a precise proposal, for 10 kW of power, specifying the integral of efficiency in function of pressure of steam.
        Warm Regards,
        Personally I think a Sterling engine is overly complex for harnessing such cheap heat as is apparently available in the eCat. Like Bruce, I think the Cyclone engine is the way to go…..and I suggested that to both Cyclone and Rossi. Cyclone is located about 30 miles North of Rossi’s Miami home.

  22. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    I live in Florida and read the capital city newspaper and haven’t read 1 word about the eCat. I also read Florida Trend, a popular business magazine…..again, not 1 word. I’ve emailed the editor scolding them for ignoring Rossi. It’s not like they’re ultra careful about what they write about. Several of their fluff stories with CEO pic on the cover, the CEO ended up in prison for ponzi schemes etc.

    Today I emailed Gov Rick Scott, pleading with him to give Rossi some moral support and publicity. Gov Scott does seem to be trying hard to encourage more industries to locate here. I sent Scott the link announcing Rossi’s invite to speak before the Massachusetts Legislature.

  23. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    From this video, the Defkalion reactor looks to be considerably more expensive than the E-Cat. Machined stainless steel vs stamped sheet-metal. I would guess that the E-Cat is much more easily mass produced.

    • Roger Bird Says:

      That is some serious steel there. I would have preferred to see some faces and some steam flashing out of a unit. Stirring background music would also have been nice. (:->)

    • Simon Derricutt Says:

      Since Hydrogen embrittles steel (stainless or not) I’d suspect it is probably Aluminium. Otherwise it may crack after a while. Brass would be the best choice of metal, probably.

    • Brad Arnold Says:

      Did you see – is Defkalion using a hydrogen tank, or did they follow Leonardo and are using a hydrogen supply inside the reaction chamber?

  24. Iggy Dalrymple Says:

    Rossi has stated that his reactor is stainless steel but I got the impression that it is made from pipe or tubing.

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