FIF Systems

FIF Systems

Fully integrated Feedback Systems mimic nature

Most man made systems are linear stand alone systems, rarely integrating with other systems, let alone our natural environment. Much effort is made to isolate man made systems from the environment in which they operate.

By way of example, the current trend is to reduce CO2 emissions, its being marketed as a toxic gas causing global warming that we are releasing into our atmosphere. Yet consider what would happen if we were to succeed in removing all CO2 from the atmosphere. To start with, it would be the end of all food production, for CO2 is the feedstock of all plants (food) and algae (great for cleaning up just about all human mess and producing useful products like oil and food and more).

We have more people on the planet than at any time in history, and that implies more food is required to be produced than in any time in history. (It also implies that there is more work for algae  to clean up our wastes).

Does it not seem fortunate that we are emitting more and more feedstock for producing food and cleaning up our wastes? Instead of projects that aim to bury CO2 in the ground, for example Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), which incidentally also buries two atoms of Oxygen for every one atom of Carbon (Oxygen is quite a useful gas to have in our atmosphere), common sense would lead us to develop more algae and plant based systems. Interestingly, algae can produce twenty times more oil per hectare than palm plantations.

Fortunately, it is possible to improve the success rate of sustainable development when man-made feedback systems take into account natures feedback system. By bringing the two together rather than see them in isolation upgrades the performance of both.

Simple Example of a FIF system

A wood burning camping stove that burns twigs and sticks will produce heat to cook food and boil water. Its not very efficient, but is well known simple technology. Adding a thermoelectric generator bolted to the side of the stove  adds a new level of technology, generating small but useful amounts of electricity from the waste heat. The simple wood burning camping stove can now power a small fan and blow the heat to those gathered around, or even charge mobile phones or power a small LED camping light.

This is a linear assembly of simple known technologies

But if the TEG now powers a fan, and the fan blows air into the wood burning stove so it burns hotter, cleaner and more efficiently, the extra heat is converted into more electricity and the fan blows more giving even more excess for lights and charging mobile phones

A FIF System is greater than the individual performance of its parts.

Imagine a FIF system composed of PV panels, Anaerobic digestors, photobioreactors, water makers, and more.

Builders of man made energy transduction systems often confine their thinking to one mechanism or another, rather than looking for an integrated harmonious approach to energy generation. The debate runs ‘biomass boiler or solar’, ‘anaerobic digestion or wind turbine’ When the real question should start with an analysis of all the available resources and their relative potential to contribute to the energy budget required, with the least waste of resource and maximum recapture and reapplication of the products of their use. Coupled with these questions must be the addressing of the mitigation of energy loss in its application and use within the human community. Such an approach naturally mitigates pollution and leads to energy conservation.