Stanley Pons

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Stanley Pons
Stanley Pons cold fusion gear.jpg
Born (1943-08-23) August 23, 1943 (age 72)
Valdese, North Carolina, U.S.[1]
Citizenship France (originally US)[2]
Fields Electrochemistry
Institutions University of Utah
Doctoral advisor Alan Bewick
Known for Work on cold fusion

Bobby Stanley Pons (born August 23, 1943) is an American-French electrochemist known for his work with Martin Fleischmann on cold fusion in the 1980s and '90s.[3]

Early life[edit]

Pons was born in Valdese, North Carolina. He attended Valdese High School, then Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., where he studied chemistry. He began his PhD studies in chemistry at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, but left before completing his PhD for financial reasons.[citation needed] His thesis resulted in a paper, co-authored in 1967 with Harry B. Mark, his adviser. The New York Times wrote that it pioneered a way to measure the spectra of chemical reactions on the surface of an electrode.[4]

He decided to finish his PhD in England at the University of Southampton, where in 1975 he met Martin Fleischmann. Pons was a student in Professor Alan Bewick's group; he earned his PhD in 1978.[4]


On March 23, 1989, while Pons was the chairman of the chemistry department at the University of Utah,[4] he and Fleischmann announced the experimental production of "N-Fusion", which was quickly labeled by the press as cold fusion.[5] After a short period of public acclaim, hundreds of scientists attempted to reproduce the effects but generally failed.[6] After the claims were found to be unreproducible, the scientific community determined the claims were incomplete, and inaccurate.[7][8][9][6][8][1][10]

Pons moved to France in 1992, along with Fleischmann, to work at a Toyota-sponsored laboratory. The laboratory closed in 1998 after a 12 million research investment without conclusive results.[2] He gave up his US citizenship[11] and became a French citizen.[12]


  1. ^ a b Taubes, Gary (1993). Bad science: the short life and weird times of cold fusion. New York: Random House. p. 6. ISBN 0-394-58456-2. 
  2. ^ a b Voss, D (1999-03-01). "What Ever Happened to Cold Fusion". Physics World. Retrieved 2008-05-01. 
  3. ^ "Nuclear fusion", Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2011, accessed May 6, 2011.
  4. ^ a b c William J. Broad (1989-05-09). "Brilliance and Recklessness Seen in Fusion Collaboration". The New York Times. 
  5. ^ Fleischmann, M; Pons S; Hawkins M (1989). "Electrochemically induced nuclear fusion of deuterium". J. Electroanal. Chem. 261 (2): 301. doi:10.1016/0022-0728(89)80006-3. 
  6. ^ a b Adil E. Shamoo, David B. Resnik (2003). Oxford University Press US, ed. Responsible Conduct of Research (2, illustrated ed.). p. 76, 97. ISBN 0-19-514846-0. 
  7. ^ Henry Krips, J. E. McGuire, Trevor Melia (1995). University of Pittsburgh Press, ed. Science, Reason, and Rhetoric (illustrated ed.). pp. xvi. ISBN 0-8229-3912-6. 
  8. ^ a b Bart Simon (2002). Rutgers University Press, ed. Undead Science: Science Studies and the Afterlife of Cold Fusion (illustrated ed.). p. 119. ISBN 0-8135-3154-3. 
  9. ^ Michael B. Schiffer, Kacy L. Hollenback, Carrie L. Bell (2003). University of California Press, ed. Draw the Lightning Down: Benjamin Franklin and Electrical Technology in the Age of Enlightenment (illustrated ed.). pp. 207. ISBN 0-520-23802-8. 
  10. ^ Thomas F. Gieryn (1999). University of Chicago Press, ed. Cultural Boundaries of Science: Credibility on the Line (illustrated ed.). pp. 204]. ISBN 0-226-29262-2. 
  11. ^ Weinberger, Sharon (2004-11-21). "Warming Up to Cold Fusion". Washington Post: W22.  (page 2 of online version)
  12. ^ Platt, Charles (1998). "What if Cold Fusion is Real?". Wired Magazine (6.11). Retrieved 2008-05-25. 

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