Technology

Call for inter-disciplinary studies in ‘cold fusion'

EMERGING FIELD: (From left) M. Srinivasan, chairman, ICCF organising commitee, Bikash Sinha, former president, Indian Physics Association; Mustansir Burma, Director, TIFR; and William Collis, U.S. scientist, at a conferencein Chennai on Monday. Photo: R. Ravindran  

Scientists on Monday called for inter-disciplinary “cold fusion” studies involving nuclear physicists and chemical engineers to establish scientific validation for the discipline of condensed matter nuclear science.

Participants of the 16{+t}{+h} international conference on condensed matter nuclear science (ICCF 16) hosted by the International Society for Condensed Matter Nuclear Science, were of the view that though the principle of generating high energy reaction (through fusion) from low energy feeds was yet to gain widespread acceptance the relatively new branch would soon establish itself as a science with social applications, especially in energy security.

Inaugurating the conference, Mustansir Barma, Director, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, called for a deeper engagement by the scientific community in the new area.

Pointing out that the “disparity of scales” in the postulation of a lower energy phenomenon driving a high energy reaction was at the heart of the problem in getting a wider acceptance, he said some of the questions that scientists need to find answers for were how condensed nuclei can influence nuclear physics and whether the phenomenon can influence nuclear properties.

Later, interacting with reporters, William Collis, US scientist, pointed out that the big difference with the new discipline of condensed matter nuclear was that it required very modest levels of investment. This has led to several small-scale individual and group research efforts across the world.

M. Srinivasan, chairman, ICCF organising committee, said interest was reviving in this discipline and the potential it seemed to hold even though the phenomena was not yet fully explained in terms of textbook physics.

US scientists David Nagel and Michael Melich said inter-disciplinary research was the only way forward to establish cold fusion as hard science.


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Printable version | Jun 17, 2021 5:53:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/Call-for-inter-disciplinary-studies-in-lsquocold-fusion/article15131830.ece

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