Top Materials for Cold Fusion Work
Are there any materials or commodities that might be boosted by widespread adoption of low energy nuclear reaction (LENR) or cold fusion technology? The answer to this question is possibly the widespread utilization of LENR might increase demand for some materials.
The first of these might be nickel most LENR processes including Andrea Rossi’s and Brillouin’s use nickel to achieve a reaction. The amount of nickel used is small but it is necessary. It must be noted here that since large scale use of LENR is not widespread we don’t know how much nickel would actually be used. My guess is that the demand for nickel would not be affected greatly by LENR.
Another metal that might be affected is Palladium which is a precious metal. It trades on the exchanges with gold, platinum and silver. As of September 14, 2012 Palladium was trading at $696 an ounce. Some LENR processes including Jet Energy’s use Palladium so their adoption could increase demand for this metal. It must be noted here that Palladium LENR could be cost prohibitive.
The other major element used in today’s LENR experiments is hydrogen which can be easily made from water if you have a lot of energy. There are also some new processes that greatly reduce the cost of hydrogen. So it is doubtful that a hydrogen market will appear because it is so easy to produce. There might be a hydrogen shortage early in the LENR age because supply couldn’t meet demand but as suppliers ramped up production it would disappear.
There are some other materials that could be affected by an LENR revolution. One of them is copper demand for it could increase because there would be more electronic devices around thanks to cheaper electricity. Demand for copper could also fall if the use of smaller LENR generators reduces demands on the electric grid and the need for lots of power lines.
Demand for steel and iron on the other hand could increase because lower energy costs would create more demand for those materials. People might want bigger cars or trains, ships might get bigger. Lower shipping costs might decrease consumer prices which will increase demand. There might be more construction and lower mining costs might increase the supply which would increase demand.
There might also be more demand for ceramics because LENR units might presumably be made of ceramic materials. There would certainly be more demand for the ceramics themselves and the materials they are made of.
Obviously this is all speculation because we don’t know what LENR process will become widely used and how it works. One thing is certain wide spread use of cold fusion will increase demand for certain materials but decrease demand for others. The effect it will have on commodities is going to be profound and it will change the economy beyond recognition.