The Martin Fleischmann Memorial Project has started work to examine and dismantle some effects related to fuel preparation. They give the following rationale for the work:
Rossi / Parkhomov say that the powder needs to be heated rapidly to around 200ºC to drive off adsorbed/absorbed water and to cause micro-explosions producing smaller particles of Nickel.
Both Piantelli and Brillouin state that it is necessary to remove all O2.
The work to replicate Rossi / Parkhomov has so far been very difficult, and the current effort by the MFMP will help examine some reasons for the previous failures. A lack of pre-baking of the nickel has been hypothesized as one of the reasons for these failures.
UPDATE 1/30/16: The active test has started. Find the live feed here.