Wednesday, May 5, 2021

outside the box

We commonly hear, it can't be done, it won't be done, and all types of fear uncertainty and doubt, when looking at CDR and 100% REs.

When I was a child there was one way to make pasta. Boil water on a stove, and anything less than al dente was sacrilegious. Today I know that if I use different pasta, (but still calorically the same) angel hair instead of penne, add boiling water from an electric kettle, then microwave it, it's done in less than 5 minutes and al dente. If I'm plugged into an electric grid, it's entirely fossil free. (Yes, induction and radiant work too, but do take some time to boil.) So, it's not the traditional pasta unless you wanted angel hair, but it's less energy intensive, even though it's now has two heat process steps.

This is the kind of thinking we'll be doing to find ways to engineer more ways to reduce the energy demands of our lifestyle and our carbon removal efforts. Couple this with the falling price in Solar PV, and batteries, and we hopefully will meet before reaching 1.5ºC & using up the remaining carbon budget.

This is the exciting frontier of re-imaging and engineering to lower energy costs. And I haven't even touched on the cool stuff that's incubated from Activate & Cyclotron Road.

And remember, just because the fo**il fu*l industrial complex can pull oil from Alaska and refine it in the lower 48 then ship it to a Walmart or gas pump in Florida, doesn't mean that process needs to continue if EVs take over transportation.

The cost of that entire process I just described was offset by fossil fuel subsidies, shareholders, corporation value, existing supply chains, etc ... 

How much ceases to exist or gets replaced by REs and CDR? How much more efficient would it be to just use Solar PV deployed within 50 mi radius of the vehicle that uses electricity instead of oil? How many more new jobs when PV is installed, and the grid transmission upgraded, and the machinists and heavy industry workers are hired to maintain the grid, and new CDR technology? What happens when this is deployed in a city's existing industrial area? But it's totally electric and the new biz owners are fully 3x bottom line so they operate a zero emissions site?

Just imagine!

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Unlocking pure truth

I love unlocking pure truth from the universe.

There are different types of fearlessness. I'm really good at being intellectually fearless. People can be inconsistent and possibly dangerous, but STEM is a realm where I have very little fear.
To solve very stuck problems with many unknowns, I tend to zoom out and back in, looking at and testing the problem space from its edges. This approach frequently knits new or different concepts into existing knowledge nodes. Then the problem-solving can often jump to a new way of framing and yield new knowledge.

I confess I sometimes seek fundamental concepts relentlessly.

Take the distance between two points, simple, right? What about looking at it from the algebra: distance magnitude multiplied by (units (distance in a common frame of reference) over time). All that extra thought violates Occam's razor; why bother?

The distance can be represented by the time traveled (unless bent by a massively heavy object), as shown by mathematical manipulations. A distance can be represented by the time light travels between two points.
And that travel can be represented in the time domain, or spatial domain, or even radius or diameter divided by two plus a direction, but it's all the same meaning. Ultimately the photon went from here to there. Given the numerous ways to express distance, it would caution one to keep track of which method is doing the accounting.

Physics can be confusing because we have many ways to represent the same knowledge, and it may not be clear which method is in use.

This process of natural science inquiry is very beautiful to me. It reignites living.

Engineers would say you can't violate Occam's razor just for a selfish need of beauty. That will lead to Rube Goldberg machines at worst or at best something inefficient.

To them, I say the universe is so enormous; there are so many wonders unexplained; why be confined to known patterns?

But maybe this passion should die out? If computers can do it faster and even brute force all possible solutions to crack knowledge, do humans need this desire? If we lose the wonder, this delight in the pursuit of knowledge, would life suffer? So many don't care as it is.

Would we become virtual thought potatoes?

I admire the Occam's razor devotees, they are natural engineers, but that's not what inspires me to live.

CC-BY-SA-4.0 2021 - Shannon A. Fiume

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Open political commentary & refs

In light of yesterday's failed insurrection attempt, any political commentary I make is creative commons CC0. I don't care to be attributed, I do care that fascism, and white supremacy ends. If it's a technology or climate story I kindly ask that it be attributed. As, I work on open science for a better climate. Please support via or as I have no funding.

Remember, Trump was hinting about an autogolpe late fall of 2020, yesterday had a failed insurrection from seditionists, militias. Then the domestic terrorists consisting of white supremacists  largely just walk out of the Capital and chill in a nearby hotel as if they just went to Disneyland.

For a partial rundown of the events which contribute to the present see the timeline to June of 2020.

In particular, note the links to the most current incarnation of gaslighting and ties to birtherism. Pay attention to Stephen Miller, Steve Bannon, Robert Mercer, and Koch lobbying executive Marc Short. Also look for ties to the Daily Caller, Tucker Carson, Koch institutional monies, Koch lobbing groups, SPN and ALEC.

Extremists roots and how to over come 

Anne Applebaum authoritarian roots

Anne Applebaum on yesterday

Saturday, January 2, 2021

Open NanoCarbon Annual New Year's Letter


Last year was one hell of a year. Never before have I seen so much widespread grief, soul-crushing misery, and response from people. We lost so many. We examined ourselves and started work to recognize and open access and opportunities for Black lives and in turn, will help all minorities. Even today, much of the world, our healthcare, and essential workers are still in the trenches. And we still have an unequal society.

I put my long-shot quest of building an energy storage device on hold while I battled my own depression. I was thankful for the kindness of strangers and friends.

I'm continuing ONC for January. I am seeking a stipend or paying work. I have not been revenue positive since '15. Instead, I've invested in learning, and experimenting, including creating ONC, a poster session at the 2018 International Negative Emissions Conference in Sweden, a preprint, met Christiana Figueres at the end of the GCAS '18 at College of Marin in California, DD BASF, Maker Faire, and for Autofracture built rGO in a bedroom and then a garage, and created the new logo for ONC. In early fall I reached out to the UN as our sky turned orange, an annual sight in Napa and Sonoma Counties but unfamilar to those more south.

While researching Carbon Removal scalability, I found the projected market demand for carbonates and basalt projects is larger than direct conversion to solid carbon. As such, ONC is changing its goal of 'removing hundreds of gigatonnes in less than two decades' to 'the fastest large scale conversion' to solid carbon. The choice is twofold; we still need solid carbons to produce goods like polymers and bitumen and ought to democratize 3D printing.

ONC Climate Modeling Research

ONC is still researching climate modeling to get to zero degrees warming over the start of industry (mean temperature from 1720-1800). And will be continuing to build off the pymagicc team's work in python workbooks at I'm looking for sponsors of this project as well as volunteer coders. I've opened an ONC issue to calibrate MAGICC 6 for negative emissions, as MAGICC 7 won't be available till the fall of 2021. Other issues will be opened, soon. Ideally, I intend to get this done in Jan.

To better understand how to achieve and what happens at zero cumulative anthropogenic emissions, we need climate modeling outlining Earth's dynamic response. CDRMIP has not adopted baseline calibration carbon removal tests to absolute zero to complete in less than a century. The Zero Emissions Commitment paper outlines what happens for removal to 1.5ºC, not cumulative zero anthropogenic emissions. Cao and Calderia's 2009 paper starts removal after reaching 511 ppm in 2049. Hopefully, our efforts will inspire others to look at pushing beyond Paris. Early modeling to cumulative anthropogenic zero shows we must achieve 1.5ºC (Paris) and head much lower before 2100. Early modeling also shows we need to move off all fossil gasses to eliminate Montreal/Kigali controlled SFGHGs. For continuing research

Many of my in situ reports are in tweets, please do visit, read and share my pinned thread that shows supporting reasoning as to why we must reach at least 92% of net zero by 2030. (

ONC Physical Sci Research

There are a few recent CO₂ to solid carbon/liquid hydrocarbons in the past few years. As ONC's charter is open science, only those open science candidates can be adopted and adapted by ONC. Depending on how much runway I have, how ONC grows, what labs are open, and vaccine availability, I'll either manage or be the PI for electrochemical CDR experiment(s) in the fall of 2021. As I have no physical lab, nor have I've been vaccinated; this is very speculative.

I've moved to San Francisco for health and a shorter commute to the bay's labs. It has raised my rent. I will have to take a break from ONC at the end of Jan until I replenish my runway. I hope to start ONC physical science research in the fall unless ONC receives donations. SLAC/LBNL labs are free, assuming ONC wins the grant/PI process to be accepted to perform open science. The donations would support any materials the labs may not have and a living stipend.

The fact that I'm asking for money is likely a failing on my part as a founder. However, I've started things that no one has attempted: ONC, and green catalysis of rGO in a garage.

The year 2020 was an exceedingly difficult time. If you would like to restart your participation in open science, contact Shannon. I look forward to hearing from you.

Wishing you good health, stay safe, and quick access to vaccines.

Yours in service to a better climate,



Shannon A. Fiume

shannon at autofracture dot com | | | | Go Carbon Negative!