On the Journal of Nuclear Physics, recently, there have been several commenters interested in the concept of a “bigger” E-Cat. That is to say, some people think that an E-Cat should be able to produce more than 10 kW.
Andrea Rossi combines his E-Cats and Hot Cats to make units capable of producing industrial amounts of energy. One of his 1MW Hot Cat units will weigh about a ton, and measure 2 meters long by 1 meter high and 1 meter wide. At these measurements, Mr. Rossi sees no reason to work on larger individual units to take the place of the smaller ones. To him, the scale is just fine.
Daniel Caluwe recently proposed that with bigger units, the need for refueling would be less frequent. He comments:
“…as your 1MWth plants have 100 10kWth units each, this makes 256400 (39% thermal0to-electrical efficiency) to 1659 (33% thermal-to-electrical efficiency) replacements of fuel each day! So, in the case of a 1000MWe power plant, wouldn’t a bigger scale of the individual units (bigger than the 10kWth you have now) be more optimal? (With less replacements of fuel each day, as only one of the improvements in this specific application?”
Mr. Rossi replied:
“A piece of matter is made by 6.022 136 7(36) x 10^23mol^-1 units. Can you imagine a single molecule as big as all this the mess that could make? I do not see why modules of 10 kW each are not good enough to make a 1 GW plant. The Whole Universe is made upon this system, and I prefer to learn from God than to outsmart Him. The problem is in the controls: they can be centralized.”
Replacement of fuel aside, the point I take away from this exchange is that the controls can be centralized. This means that the units made up of many individual E-Cats, each of which is to be monitored individually. The industrial plants will have operators on site, overseeing the workings of the units at all times. We now know that this will be done from a centralized location, with fuel canister changes being implemented on a regular basis.
In addition, Mr. Rossi says the smaller units are safer.
“A bigger reactor should be completely useless, since a combination of modules makes the same service. Obviously the smaller the reactor, the simpler the maintainment of stability. You must accept the intuitive aspect of this assertion, because I cannot enter in particulars for confidential issues.”