Hardware Engineer

  • Heirloom
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Apr 29, 2021

Job Description

Company Summary

Our mission is to accelerate our planet’s transition to a carbon negative society. We will capture 1B tons of CO2 from the atmosphere by 2035 (equivalent of ~60M Americans’ annual emissions today), and build a multi-billion dollar business along the way. The problem we are solving is that according to IPCC, billions of tons of CO2 need to removed from the atmosphere (in addition to decarbonizing the entire economy) by 2050 to keep global warming to 1.5 °C, but current technologies are too expensive and not scalable to the volume necessary.

Unlike traditional engineered removal solutions, our Nature published technology combines the natural properties of minerals (carbon mineralization) with engineering to provide a low cost path to $50/tCO2 for Direct Air Capture (DAC), the cost at which carbon removal will be transformative. 

Our early customers are corporations and other entities that need to reduce and offset their carbon emissions to meet compliance requirements or carbon pledges. Our go-to-market strategy allows us to be unit profitable from day one, and reach >$1B in revenue just from existing markets and pledges. Our $100B opportunity lies with carbon markets set for creation in the EU, US, and other markets. 

Over the next 18 months, we will de-risk our cost estimates, build a demonstration plant, and validate the commercial viability of this technology.

About the job

The Heirloom team is on a path to creating the world’s first sustainable, scalable, and economically viable carbon removal system.  This technology - which requires a unique blend of geology, chemistry, industrial engineering, and process engineering -  doesn’t yet exist at the scales necessary to make a difference, so we need to build it ourselves.  We are looking for dedicated and driven hardware scientists and engineers to help us design and build systems that capture CO2 directly from the air and enable us to process it into a variety of products (carbon credits, carbon negative materials, etc).

You and your nascent team will design and build the hardware, software, and infrastructure to capture and measure the CO2 we capture from the air we breathe.  While our laboratory results demonstrate the general concept, we must scale from lab bench to industrial scales.  You will help shape and drive exploratory research and development phases to evaluate and test new ideas and setups.  You revel in both complexity and uncertainty and delight in breaking down and translating huge problems into actionable and testable systems requirements.  As we scale, you will help us design and build the infrastructure necessary to operate at the industrial levels necessary to effect global change on our CO2 footprint.  Your work has the potential to directly shape our fight against climate change. 

Responsibilities

  • Design, build, and test our novel enhanced weathering methodology to capture CO2 at massive scale in the billions of tons.  This team will include design of the mechanical systems, the humidity/temperature systems, the measurement systems, and all of the control electronics and software to tie it together.
  • Support architecture and strategic direction for some or many subsystems
  • Discover, Test, and Evaluate the optimum parameter space of capturing CO2 - not just in the lab but at industrial scales where costs become a dominant factor.  This will include comprehensive test campaigns running simultaneously over extended periods of time and detailed documentation of results 
  • Develop the roadmap to achieving scale - figuring out how to scale from grams to kilos to gigatons of CO2.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Background (bachelors, self-taught, or experience ) in Hardware Engineering such as Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or Mechatronics
  • >3 years of relevant work experience in an applied field with expertise in handling mechanical and control systems from the ground up
  • Experience with complex systems engineering challenges

Bonus Points

  • Knowledge of chemistry/geochemistry/physics, particularly with an advanced degree
  • Proven track record architecting R&D hardware solutions and bringing them to industrial scale
  • Lab and/or field experience 
  • Experience with systems engineering requirement capture and test
  • Experience with rudimentary control software (such as python and/or C) & mechanical packages (e.g., Solidworks or similar)

Organization Type

Company

Organization Size

1-10

Sectors

Carbon Removal & Utilization Engineering