How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

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KAA
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How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by KAA »

Hi there!
So, example: I have bots unloading trains with ore / loading trains with plates for my remote smelter like this:
2021-05-02 14_08_43-Factorio 1.1.32.png
2021-05-02 14_08_43-Factorio 1.1.32.png (3.1 MiB) Viewed 699 times
And It takes about 1500-2500 robots depending on maximum travel distance.
I realize how do I know if I have enough Robots.

But what about Roboports: is it enough of them on the screenshot for charging the robots or do I need more or do I need less?

The goal, just in case, is to get maximum possible unloading speed but with minimal overkill in bots, ports, chests, UPS load.

Also, there are some challenges here, for example - I can add more ports but this'll make travel distance longer.
Or add them by the sides and they will not be used by bots for charging. And so on.

Any ideas?

astroshak
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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by astroshak »

The one thing I do know is that as robot worker speed tech gets higher, the number of bots each port can support drops, approaching 4 bots per port.

How many you need there, now that is something I never learned how to figure out, sorry.

That aside, it looks like you are belting the plates in to the train there, and then using bots to move the plates from the ends of the belts to the train’s loading chests? Why not simply use the belts to supply those chests and forego the bots entirely in that case?

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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by KAA »

astroshak wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 1:37 pm
as robot worker speed tech gets higher, the number of bots each port can support drops, approaching 4 bots per port.
Whaaat??? Can you please explain? So, the faster my robots are the more Ports I need? But why?
astroshak wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 1:37 pm
Why not simply use the belts to supply those chests and forego the bots entirely in that case?
Usually I do like you said with no issues. This is the only case I experiment using robots.

The case is, stack inserter chest > chest speed is much higher than belt > chest.
So, if I have let's say 100 belts of iron plates that I want to send out from station as fast as I can, we have the following:
1) Speed is limited by 12 stack inserters per wagon
2) Speed is limited with how fast are buffer chests refilled.
See, where do we go?

Again, buffer chest > train inserter speed is much fast then belt > buffer chest. So the trains will spend extra time on the station because of lack of input from belts (p.2).
But we can eliminate it by using that number of robots that will load buffer chests faster than the train is being loaded.

That's why, in this particular case, I use robots.

The same goes for ore > smelters unload. Belts are just too slow and buffer chests get full and do not allow train to leave in time.
Hope this explains a bit.

Looking with interest to hear on Roboport support capacity drops.

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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by KAA »

As for ore > smelters, you can reference probably topic where buffer chests unload faster than a train arrives viewtopic.php?f=194&t=58728
and this is just great thing I believe.
I also think on applying of this approach on Copper Ore smeltery.

But for Iron Ore smeltery, currently smeltery has
- 30 RED input belts of iron ore for Iron Plates.
- 16 Blue input belts of iron ore for Steel.
- 2 ore input stations with 3-8-0 trains.

You can imagine that working on balancers and unloaders for such setup will take weeks and months of life )))
Much easier and still efficient will be to just throw robots for unloading of these ore trains to belts.
Such kind of stuff )

UPD: just realized that 64x64 balancer will do the job on input, in theory. Need to think on it. Still, output with bots is the actual question.

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disentius
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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by disentius »

You could go about this another way. For instance, in your example station, the input is 16 blue belts. So building a station that can theoretically load 59, 072 belts per second is a bit overkill. (back-of envelope calculation: 8 wagons x 12 stack inserters x Max chest to chest speed(27.69 i/s) divided by belt speed(45 i/s) -> 59, 072 blue belts per second loading capacity.) Megabases are all about - slightly more than- just enough and just in time, in my opinion.

Design a station that can load/unload 16 blue belts of ore/plates continuous instead of building it for max loading speed.

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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by Trific »

KAA wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 2:28 pm
astroshak wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 1:37 pm
as robot worker speed tech gets higher, the number of bots each port can support drops, approaching 4 bots per port.
Whaaat??? Can you please explain? So, the faster my robots are the more Ports I need? But why?
Per https://wiki.factorio.com/Worker_robot_speed_(research), bots "consume 3 kW (= 3 kJ / sec) at all times when airborne (hovering or moving), plus 5 kJ per "meter" (= 1 tile) traveled." The faster they travel, the faster they consume that "travel distance" power and the sooner they must return to charge. But roboport charging speed is constant. You can think of "number of bots a roboport can support" as the number of bots that can charge before the first one needs to return for charging. If the bots have to return sooner, that's fewer bots that can charge in that time. In the extreme case, the bot travels extremely fast, and uses all the energy in a single tick, and is back for recharging the tick after it left. So all four roboport charging spots are taken up by four bots that are essentially always charging on those spots.

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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by KAA »

First of all, disentius, thanks for this calculation. It helps.

Now, the only reason I'm doing overkills that is to ease expansion.
Like, remote smeltery should have a some unused (now) capacity so that every time I expand I don't need to rebuild it.
As I don't know when will I stop, it seems the best to maximize output throughout for such a huge block, so that it satisfies my needs for some time.

Also, I've already reached the level where 1 train station of 3-8-0 with 16 belts (2 per wagon) works continuously.

So I have 2x16belts and two stations.
Though, this setup works more correct with 1 station and 32 belts loaded by bots (example of such station on the screenshot above).
But, furnaces are idle because trains are no so fast to receive 32 blue belts (because of arrival time), so actually it's an overkill on just 32 belts, not 59.

Alternatively, I have smeltery setup for 24 blue belts that mechanically full speed loading to 3-8-0 (3 belts per wagon on 100% consumption).
This seems to be balanced and just quite enough, as you said.

So, I'm thinking between this x24 setup which seems to be pretty ok, and something like 24+ setup with bots, because mechanically I cannot load more than 24 while 100% consuming belts, but bots give more throughput on the output here at cost of furnaces overkill.

You think it's better to have something like this x24 setup(s) instead of bots+overkill for now?

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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by KAA »

Trific wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 5:35 pm
The faster they travel, the faster they consume that "travel distance" power and the sooner they must return to charge.
Oh, thanks, now I calmed down a bit. As your logic seems to be obviously correct, I'd like to introduce here The Mission :)
And the mission of our bots is to transfer some items.
If I have some setup that requires 100 bots to transfer items in 1 minute, with speed tech let's say now these 100 bots transfer cargo for 30sec.
So they have like additional 30 seconds to charge or even sleep in Roboport.

So I would say that Roboport spends charging energy in a more efficient way, because for the same energy cargo request can be executed faster.
That, in a row, allows to lower bots count and so, lower number of bots that needs charging.

Maybe I'm mistaken but it looks like with higher techs, I at least can lower bot count per network, even if I will not be lowering Roboports number. No?

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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by Trific »

KAA wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 6:07 pm
Trific wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 5:35 pm
The faster they travel, the faster they consume that "travel distance" power and the sooner they must return to charge.
Oh, thanks, now I calmed down a bit. As your logic seems to be obviously correct, I'd like to introduce here The Mission :)
And the mission of our bots is to transfer some items.
If I have some setup that requires 100 bots to transfer items in 1 minute, with speed tech let's say now these 100 bots transfer cargo for 30sec.
So they have like additional 30 seconds to charge or even sleep in Roboport.

So I would say that Roboport spends charging energy in a more efficient way, because for the same energy cargo request can be executed faster.
That, in a row, allows to lower bots count and so, lower number of bots that needs charging.

Maybe I'm mistaken but it looks like with higher techs, I at least can lower bot count per network, even if I will not be lowering Roboports number. No?
If you're asking if there is any downside to higher "bot speed" tech, the answer is no. Higher bot speed never requires more roboports to maintain the same throughput, and, as you surmise, because the bots are spending less of their charge in "flight time" power requirements, they have more to spend on "distance" power requirements, and so the number of bots required to maintain throughput will reduce slightly.

However, if you want to increase throughput by say, 10%, and aim to get there by just increasing bot speed by 10%, that's where you might end up running into the number of roboports being insufficient to continue to support the same number of bots.

KAA
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Re: How do I know that I have enough Roboports now?

Post by KAA »

Yep, completely agree. I already faced such picture. Now I have a theoretical baseline to explain it. Thanks!

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