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Load-dependent steam engine/turbines

Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:30 pm
by Lordfiscus
So steam engines and turbines are load-dependent and produce more power/consume more steam when there's a greater power demand. As such, they act like ghetto accumulators when power demand isn't satisfied via other means, in conjunction with storage tanks of steam.
My question is, does it go the other way around? Will steam engines turn off when there's another source supplying power in excess of what the system needs, or do they keep draining steam and working? Could I use logistic circuits to read the power supplied by one network and use that to turn off the engines if the demand's already being satisfied by another power source, IE solar?

Re: Load-dependent steam engine/turbines

Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:05 pm
by cbhj1
power is used starting with solar, then steam from coal/nuclear, then finally accumulators

Re: Load-dependent steam engine/turbines

Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:47 pm
by zOldBulldog
There is a very simple design (on factorioprints I think) that turns off steam unless needed.

I am away from the computer but you should be able to Google it easily by searching for "steam on demand".

EDIT: Found the circuit

- A simple green wire from an accumulator (connected to your power network) to the pumps feeding your power plant(s).
- The condition A < 25 on the pumps (turns on your steam power plant(s) when the accumulator charge is less than 25%).

EDIT 2: After some testing and improving my own plant.

- The condition A < 25 does not need to be on the offshore pumps. If you prefer your circuitry right by your steam plan, you can also use a regular pump right as you feed your boiler array.
- This option might be best if you use electric inserters to feed fuel into your boilers. Then you just need one or two boilers running on burner inserters, to jumpstart the power for the electric inserters.

The screenshot shows a snippet from a late game steam design that I use (not beautiful but quite functional):
- The green wire goes to an accumulator in the back end. It sets A.
- The two pumps have the condition A < 25 set.
- The power poles along the coal belt are an isolated power line for the inserters that feed the boilers.
- Notice that the boilers on the left are fed by burner inserters.
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