Radio Frequencies Help Burn Salt Water

What’s really happening here…

This story is all over the Internet today. , , , and etc.

And most of what I see are organizations and blogs both large and small just simply repeating the original story without commentary. It’s kind of sad, really, that hope springs so eternally on the subject of getting something for nothing. And sad as well that people in general are so poorly educated about the basic laws of nature.

So in this story, first they use radio waves to break the bonds between Hydrogen and Oxygen in water. And then they light the Hydrogen as it comes out and it burns, recombining with Oxygen and releasing some heat.

Given the basic laws of physics, breaking the Hydrogen-Oxygen bonds will take more energy that burning the resulting Hydrogen will produce. So, there’s not much to get excited about here, really. We currently use electricity to break the Oxygen-Hydrogen bonds when we need free Hydrogen. Using radio waves is just an alternative way to apply sufficient energy to the bonds to break them.

Anytime you do full-cycle energy accounting like I’ve just done here and it takes more energy to run the cycle than you get out of it, it is a no-win situation

I imagine an article will appear on the snopes site in a day or so explaing in that this is, essentially, just another urban rumor.

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