Fullerene gasses are an excellent means of earning money in wormholes, both for CEOs and for newer members. The most profit to be squeezed from them comes after reacting them into Polymers that are used in the complicated T3 Strategic Cruiser production process.
Reacting fullerene gasses into polymers is a little tricky and requires the use of a POS and the Starbase Equipment Config role. Fortunately, there are no extra skills required other than the ones to anchor the arrays at your POS, which Anchoring 3 is sufficient for.
However, unlike most arrays which can be set up for corporate use, those involved in the Fullerene process require having the ability to online and offline POS structures. Meaning that only TALUN CEOs and trusted directors should ever have access to this process. TALUN CEOs are encouraged to buy gas collected by their members so that all can profit from gas harvesting sites.
1. Anchor the Appropriate Arrays.
To react gas into polymers, you will require the following for each assembly “line” you wish to install. POS’s can support up to two separately running lines, depending on your particular tower’s CPU output.
- 2x Biochemical Silo (for fullerene ingredients)
- 1x Coupling Array (for mineral ingredient; uses far less CPU/PG than the normal Silo)
- 1x Hybrid Polymer Silo (for polymer output)
- 1x Polymer Reactor Array (to perform the actual reaction)
- 1x Polymer Reaction for each type of polymer you wish to produce.
Although it doesn’t hurt to purchase all reactions that don’t use C320 or C540 (only found in c5 or c6), the reactions I personally find the most profit with are:
- Fulleroferrocene Reaction (C50 + c60 + Tritanium)
- Methanofullerene Reaction (C70 + C72 + Isogen)
- PPD Fullerene Fibers Reaction (C50 + C60 + Pyerite)
- Graphene Nanoribbons Reaction (C28 + C32 + Nocxium, harvestable in c3 and up)
The next step is to anchor all involved arrays at your POS. Leave them offline at this time. Be sure to anchor them all as close to the Corporate Hangar Array or whichever array you use to store your gas and reactions. Gas and reactions need to be actually moved into each separate location. It’s much easier to simply park a ship equidistant from all and drag and drop, rather than physically ferry them back and forth with an industrial.
2. Decide on Your Product.
Depending on what level of wormhole (C1-C6) you live in or harvest from, there are different fullerene gasses you can harvest:
- C1-C2: C50, C60, C70, C72, C84
- C3-C4: Add C28, C32 to the list
- C5-C6: Add C320, C540 to the list
Consequently, there are specific polymer reactions that will be more pertinent, since they will use the gasses you can find:
- C1-C2: Fullerene Intercalated Graphite, Fulleroferrocene, Lanthanum Metallofullerene, Methanofullerene, PPD Fullerene Fibers
- C3-C4: Add Graphene Nanoribbons, Scandium Metallofullerene to the list
- C5-C6: Add C3-FTM Acid, Carbon-86 Epoxy Resin to the list
Not all polymers were created equal. Different amounts of different types are used in various T3 productions, and their values oscillate with supply, demand, and the market for the finished subsystems. In general, the higher-level wormholes hold more valuable gas that can create more valuable polymers, but we will need to check the market before we react anything.
I’ve included here an Excel document I personally use to see which reaction will make the most profit from the gasses I currently house:
This tool can help you see which polymers will give you the greatest profit for your input, if it’s worth sitting on sell orders or just dumping to buy, or even if you’d be losing money by reacting at all. The yellow boxes are the input fields; adjust these as the market shifts. (Note: I’ve considered the costs of the minerals as negligible and not calculated them in; feel free to include those if you wish.) I’ve also included a small section to help you quickly calculate how much to pay your members for gas they collect, assuming you pay straight market buy prices.
Once you’ve decided which reaction should net you the most profit, it’s time to start the actual process.
3. Set Up Your Links.
The next step of reacting the gas in your hangars is the trickiest part, but it becomes rote once you’ve done it once or twice.
- Park your ship above your hangar, or a spot equidistant from all arrays in your gas line.
- Right-click on your POS. Select “Manage”.
- Go to Processes - Production. If all your arrays are anchored correctly, you should see something like this:
- Install the reaction you wish to use in the square with the question mark (?). To do so, simply drag and drop from wherever you currently have it onto the POS management screen.
In our example, we will be reacting Methanofullerene, which uses gas we can find even in C1s. We can see from the info screen on our reaction that Methano uses 100 units of C70, 100 of C72, and 300 of Isogen for each hour-long cycle it will produce. Be sure to click the “Change Type” on each of the four other arrays, selecting one of the input or output materials we’ll be using:
- Biochemical Silo #1: Fullerite – C70
- Biochemical Silo #2: Fullerite – C72
- Coupling Array: Isogen
- Hybrid Polymer Silo: Methanofullerne
When you are finished, your screen should look something like this:
- Now you have to create links from each of the “outputs” to each of the “inputs.” In our example,
- The c70 Biochemical Silo’s output goes to the c70 input of the Polymer Reactor Array.
- The c72 Biochemical Silo’s output goes to the c72 input of the Polymer Reactor Array.
- The Isogen Coupling Array’s output goes to the Isogen input of the Polymer Reactor Array
- The Polymer Reactor Array’s Methanofullerene output goes to the input of the Hybrid Polymer Silo.
To make a link, drag an “output” to its corresponding “input”. To make it easy, all inputs are on the left side of the screen, and all outputs are on the right side. First the C70…
Then the C72…
The Isogen next…
And finally the Methanofullerene output.
VERY IMPORTANT: For anything you just did to matter, you have to remember to hit the “Apply” button at the bottom, or the links won’t take! You can come back to your reactor hours later to find nothing had been accomplished because of this.
Additional note: For some reason, the first “Apply” never takes. I usually get around this bug by setting up only one connection, hitting Apply, and then doing all the connections properly.
- Double-check your links. To do this, hover your mouse over each icon in turn to light it up. The corresponding icon it’s linked to should light up as well. Once you’re sure all four connections are in place, move to the next step.
4. Install Your Ingredients.
This step is actually very simple. Using the POS management screen, you can right-click on each silo in turn and select “Access Storage” (assuming you are within 2500 meters of it). From here, it’s a simple case of drag-and-drop from your Corporate Hangar to each silo in turn. (Which is another reason why anchoring them all near each other is helpful.)
Remember, for our given example, we are depositing one part c70 to one part c72 to three parts Isogen. As long as this ratio is met, the quantities don’t matter.
You cannot deposit or withdraw from Silos that are online. Which is why you’ve left them offline up until this point…haven’t you?
5. Online All Arrays.
Now it’s time to click the “Put Online” button for each of our five arrays. This used to be a much longer and more involved process before the crucible Expansion. Now, thankfully, what used to take 15 minutes now only takes 15 seconds.
When you’re finished onlining, your screen should look something like this:
The Polymer Reactor Array will read “Starting Up” before it hits its first cycle, and again later after all gas has been reacted. Cycles should begin during your POS “ping,” or when the POS draws its next cycle of fuel. During the Polymer Reactor Array’s actual operation, it will read “Active” as above.
Stopping the Polymer Reactor Array during its “Active” cycle will waste the single hour’s worth of gas and minerals it was using at the time. Unlike a Refining Array, nothing else will be lost.
6. Obtain the Finished Product.
For our example, if we put in 5000 units each of c70 and c72 and 15000 units of Isogen, our Reactor would finish in 50 hours, or just over two days. We would come back to it then.
Wait until the Polymer Reactor Array reads “Starting Up” again before doing anything. There could still be a last cycle of gas reacting, even when the input Silos read empty.
You’ll recall that you cannot access Silo storage while the array is still online. You can offline all your arrays now. Access the Hybrid Polymer Silo. Drag and drop the result into the next industrial headed for market. Sell. Profit! Repeat.
And keep in mind that the best profits to be made from your reacted Polymers come from sitting on sell orders, if you have a character to manage them.