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At this juncture in the history of LENRs, it is important to note that Pons & Fleischmann (1989), however publicly maligned, were in fact correct about their calorimetrically measured ‘excess heat’ being a real physical effect resulting from some type of nuclear process. However, Pons & Fleischmann were totally mistaken in their idea that the nuclear process producing their observed 'excess heat’ and Helium-4 was a strong interaction, Coulomb barrier-penetrating D-D fusion reaction. Nonetheless, their intuitive hope that the phenomenon might someday be successfully harnessed to provide a new type of clean, truly ‘green’ nuclear energy technology could also prove to be correct in the not-too-distant future.
Unfortunately for Pons & Fleischmann, their excess heat effects were poorly reproducible in 1989-1990 because they were completely wrong about their D-D fusion hypothesis and had no knowledge whatsoever of what is now called nanotechnology and plasmonics. Indeed, certain technical knowledge derived from nanotechnology, plasmonics, and materials science that is utterly necessary to be able to fabricate reproducible, well-performing LENR devices did not even exist in 1989, or even in the mid- to late 1990s. In my opinion, there is no way condensed matter LENRs could have been truly experimentally reproducible prior to the past several years.
However, commercialization may now be feasible today; the tools to do so are finally available.
I believe that our collective many-body theory has finally put LENRs on a firm theoretical footing by firmly anchoring them in the solid bedrock of electroweak theory, the Standard Model, and many-body collective effects. That said, many more important experimental and theoretical discoveries remain to be made by adventuresome scientists; new vistas of opportunities that that are opening-up for future R&D are huge.
However, the field of LENRs now needs to attract many, many more new entrants from many different disciplines in ‘mainstream’ science for LENRs to flower fully and reach their ultimate scientific and commercial potential.