All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

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foamy
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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by foamy »

gGeorg wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 5:49 pm
Also, in your case, of heatpipes as capacitor, you dont have a tool too measure amount of heat stored in plant, so you dont know when insert new cell, so , as result, in case of irregular usage, probably with combination of solars and some burners, or simple bug attack repelled by lasers you will feed nuclear cells nonstop. Which is, as you know, punishable by law. :P
Not having a way to measure heat stored directly is an issue, yes, but it's not insurmountable: Steam consumption can be measured quite precisely, and how much a nuclear cell generates is an exactly known quantity (if your plant has no other bottlenecks or desync). Ergo you can feed in a new cell precisely when the last cell was wholly consumed, and therefore respond with the absolute maximum possible precision to demand alterations.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by gGeorg »

mmmPI wrote:
Tue Oct 12, 2021 4:29 pm
gGeorg wrote:
Tue Oct 12, 2021 4:03 pm
dont think, you understnad what wasteless design means. It is fully automated system which can handle any spike or power ned drop for any period of time.
Example : You start to make a base redisign so power consumption drops from 500 - 600MW to 4MW. Where you have an solar field which gives 10MW. Meanwhile you redesign the base, bugs come and lasers make energy spike at 400MW. Power plant need to designed so no waste fuel happens. and everything get power when needed.

No, what you describe is self-regulating. Meaning the power plant will adjust its consumption and production itself. Thanks to reading steamflow, steam level, side fuel consumption and so on. This is the feedback that allow self-regulating.

Wasteless/wastelessness, means you don't insert fuel when the reactor is 1000°, because this energy is then wasted. It's less complex behavior than self-regulating.
No. Power plant can not adjust consumption. Also, You could waste fuel even if you insert cell on 700C. Waste is not linked to core temp, but thermal capacity of the plant.
Last edited by gGeorg on Wed Oct 13, 2021 11:50 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by gGeorg »

foamy wrote:
Wed Oct 13, 2021 5:55 am
gGeorg wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 5:49 pm
Also, in your case, of heatpipes as capacitor, you dont have a tool too measure amount of heat stored in plant, so you dont know when insert new cell, so , as result, in case of irregular usage, probably with combination of solars and some burners, or simple bug attack repelled by lasers you will feed nuclear cells nonstop. Which is, as you know, punishable by law. :P
Not having a way to measure heat stored directly is an issue, yes, but it's not insurmountable: Steam consumption can be measured quite precisely, and how much a nuclear cell generates is an exactly known quantity (if your plant has no other bottlenecks or desync). Ergo you can feed in a new cell precisely when the last cell was wholly consumed, and therefore respond with the absolute maximum possible precision to demand alterations.
I made a test bed for offset timer for steam level controlled plant. I hope I can finalize and update my Perfect cloverleaf until Friday. It will be nice if you can test_ride/evaluate the resullt.

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Re: All the different ways to automate a nuclear power plant

Post by mmmPI »

gGeorg wrote:
Wed Oct 13, 2021 11:39 am
No. Power plant can not adjust consumption. Also, You could waste fuel even if you insert cell on 700C. Waste is not linked to core temp, but thermal capacity of the plant.
xaetral wrote:
Sun Sep 19, 2021 2:50 pm
mmmPI wrote:
Sun Sep 19, 2021 1:16 pm
Does that count as automated way to nuclear power plant :) ?
If no automation counts, then this does indeed.
I'll add this in my sheets 👍

I described the clock-mechanism and specifically asked OP if it was to be included in the topic. To which he said yes. That's a bit why i'm insisting.

I would say :It doesn't matter if the plant can not adjust consumption for "wasteless". If you set up to 50% and consume 50, it is wasteless, if you set to 75% and consume 75% also you have wastelessness.

You are right when you say you could insert at 700° and still waste. It has nothing to do with automation.

If the plant is able to auto-adjust power production/fuel consumption, it's another functionnality. I called it self-regulated, because the other would be player regulated.


If you want your power plant to function at 80% load while not wasting fuel, the sef-regulating design is not practical. The self-regulated design will adapt power production to your consumption meaning if your consumption drops at 50% the plant will function at 50% and if consumption increase to 95% the plant will adapt. You have no control over your fuel consumption. Sure most of the time you want that behavior, the automatic adaptation, but it's not the exact same as wasteless.

Here is an old picture of a modded game where the clock-system makes total sense :
nuclearfurnace.jpg
nuclearfurnace.jpg (583.73 KiB) Viewed 222 times
The 3 nuclear reactor burn modded fuel to generate heat that is required for the furnaces to process the silicon from the 2 giant miners.

Fuel and used fuel were delivered by train.

There is no steam to measure, you have to find a way to quantify the heat. It could be by calculating the amount of silicon processed, and you refuel every 200K for example.
Or you could have a timer that you set-up manually, and have a lot of thermal inertia to reduce the frequency at which you need to adapt and the precision required for the setting.
or something like a timer that runs only when the belt is full/empty, to stop fuel burning when the buffer are filled to prevent waste of fuel.

You cannot read electricity consumption and let the power plant cool down automatically when the buffer are full, because the fuel is not burned for electricity. The electricity could be solar for example, and auto adapt, you still need to control the fuel on the reactors that only heat furnaces because otherwise they will heat up the furnaces to 1000° and continue, you risk being punished by law no ? :twisted:

Yes it's very particular, but if we are going to list and discuss "All the different ways", then we're not choosing the best one aren't we ?

Maybe someone sometimes will need something very particular and it will be helpful to have it. The method and the calculations, the explanations you did can be helpful for other things too. It doesn't help that my personnal version of it is very bad, to show when it can be useful , i admit :)

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by mrvn »

mmmPI wrote:
Tue Oct 12, 2021 4:29 pm
gGeorg wrote:
Tue Oct 12, 2021 4:03 pm
dont think, you understnad what wasteless design means. It is fully automated system which can handle any spike or power ned drop for any period of time.
Example : You start to make a base redisign so power consumption drops from 500 - 600MW to 4MW. Where you have an solar field which gives 10MW. Meanwhile you redesign the base, bugs come and lasers make energy spike at 400MW. Power plant need to designed so no waste fuel happens. and everything get power when needed.

No, what you describe is self-regulating. Meaning the power plant will adjust its consumption and production itself. Thanks to reading steamflow, steam level, side fuel consumption and so on. This is the feedback that allow self-regulating.

Wasteless/wastelessness, means you don't insert fuel when the reactor is 1000°, because this energy is then wasted. It's less complex behavior than self-regulating.
But doing that by having the player set the desired output in MW is just stupid. Power consumption is never a constant.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by mmmPI »

mrvn wrote:
Wed Oct 13, 2021 6:42 pm
But doing that by having the player set the desired output in MW is just stupid. Power consumption is never a constant.

it doesn't have to be constant, it has to average in the amount of cycle of fuel that you can buffer under the form of heat.


if you use enough heat pipes to store 3 cycle of fuel, the consumption can be 10% for 5 minutes then 90% for five minutes. If you set it at 50% it's fine, still no fuel loss. wasteless.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by gGeorg »

We are mixing 2 things then dont understand each other. Include OP.

Regarding usage of fuel, (efficiency of fuel), There are 2 different design challenges in Nuclear power plants.

1. When insert another cell ?
- cell always burn to the end in 200s (it doesnt pause when not needed like smelting oven)
- designer can use default principle - load as many as possible - which creates fuel waste
- designer can use some smart solution to insert fuel cell only when conditions are filled - fuel waste reduction problem
- ideal solution is wasteless design

2. How create and detect adequate thermal capacity to prevent void heat ?
- game mechanic makes void not used heat from burned cell
- player designer challenge is, use some smart solution to prevent thermal loss - thermal loss reduction problem
- thermal design solution creates such plant design which can absorb all the heat from all the Nuclear cell inserted at once. then prevent another cell load to allow consume stored heat first
- ideal solution is lossless design

For some reason, OP mixed both these problem to one question which is confusing.
xaetral wrote:
Sat Sep 18, 2021 8:07 pm
There are mentioned few "systems" whithout noticing what is what, so confusion is seed is there.

Steam Level 2. How create and detect adequate thermal capacity to prevent void heat ?
Steam Production 1. When insert another cell ?
Steam Flow 1. When insert another cell ?
Accumulator Level Monitoring 1. When insert another cell ?
Side Channel Power Production Monitoring 1. When insert another cell ?
------------
I can add some other ideas for (1. When insert another cell ?) :
detect used cell unload event
detect fresh cell load event
measure time to burn the cell
mmmPI wrote:
Wed Oct 13, 2021 8:05 pm
it doesn't have to be constant, it has to average in the amount of cycle of fuel that you can buffer under the form of heat.

if you use enough heat pipes to store 3 cycle of fuel, the consumption can be 10% for 5 minutes then 90% for five minutes. If you set it at 50% it's fine, still no fuel loss. wasteless.
Well, by the rules I have just highlighted, you talk about partial lossless design. Thermal buffer capacity. e.g. such design which can absorb (buffer) an certain portion of heat.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by xaetral »

I don't think I get what you mean here...
You can just ask the power plant (using circuit-wired combinators) to add 8GJ per reactor to the "heat system" over 200s (though you might consider it to be instant because you need to be able to store that energy if you don't consume any power).
And the other point is that you need to wait for that heat system to loose enough energy (through power consumption) before adding a new batch of heat energy (tbh it's just the same point but said differently).
Here I described the most simple case but you may also use heat together with steam and electricity to store that energy, the point is that at the end you just have a black box that is only an energy storage that you can fill and empty.


Also yeah, as I said in the first post, I may break down the exact working principle of all these setups if you ask so.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by mmmPI »

gGeorg wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:52 am
We are mixing 2 things then dont understand each other.
yes maybe more than 2 haha.
gGeorg wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:52 am
1. When insert another cell ?
- cell always burn to the end in 200s (it doesnt pause when not needed like smelting oven)
- designer can use default principle - load as many as possible - which creates fuel waste
- designer can use some smart solution to insert fuel cell only when conditions are filled - fuel waste reduction problem
- ideal solution is wasteless design
This is close to what i called wasteless. the difference between default, load as many as possible, or having a way to control fuel consumption to reduce it when not needed is done to achieve wastelessness.

I think though that it is not a specificity that is proper to a design, but i would say it more the result of how you use designs.

If you use the default method, load as many as possible, but ingame you also use 100% power all the time, you will not waste fuel. The design itself is not smart. The situation that wil happen if you always consume 100% power will still be a situation where the power plant doesn't waste anything.

What op proposed as initial design, your clover leaf power plant, those have dynamic mechanism to seek wasteless situations. Getting information, and reacting to be wasteless no matter what electricity consumption. This means reducing refuel frequency when not needed but also having enough buffer for the energy.

We could say those design function ONLY wasteless. or try to.

While the default system can be wasteless sometimes if the consumption is exactly the same as the maximum production, but the rest of the time it waste fuel. the design is not waste-free waste-impossible, you need the efficiency police to control only when everything is fine, not random control haha.

gGeorg wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:52 am
2. How create and detect adequate thermal capacity to prevent void heat ?
- game mechanic makes void not used heat from burned cell
- player designer challenge is, use some smart solution to prevent thermal loss - thermal loss reduction problem
- thermal design solution creates such plant design which can absorb all the heat from all the Nuclear cell inserted at once. then prevent another cell load to allow consume stored heat first
- ideal solution is lossless design
This i think is more characteristic to the design itself versus the other part that is more the result of a situation. I don't really see the difference between wasteless and lossless. things are not organised the same way in my mind :) for me the keywords here are "detect" and "prevent void heat".

What i read here include the relation between the energy buffer capacity, in steam, or heat, and the fuel cycle.

Taking the example of your clover leaf, the fuel cycle worth 4(core)x3(adjacency)x8GJ= 96 GJ or 96 000MJ, which is 480MWx200sec. If consumption stops just after refuel, you have to buffer 96000 MJ in the form of a heat in few heatpipes, and/or steam in some tanks and iron pipes.

This is because the all the fuel will burn and the heat will be lost if it's not buffered.

This is the MINIMUM energy buffer you need if you want a power plant to be wasteless when the situation is no electricity consumption just after refuel.
This one is not one you can configure yourself, it's how it is in the game and you have to play with that. This is the "no consumption" extreme.

The other extreme is 100% consumption, max capacity, 200fuel timer, they all mean the same for me. In this case no need for buffer.

That leaves 1 thing open : There is no MAXIMUM buffer, you can have 12 millions tanks, and activate the nuclear plant at max power only on mondays if the consumption is only 15% of max capacity. Then next week you know if you activate during 20hours on monday or 19hours or 24 hours, you can adapt ( you count the steam tank left on sunday haha).

Most self regulating/adaptive/automated design ( like your clover leaf) adapt in 1 cycle of fuel, because it reduce the amount of buffer required to store the energy/steam/heat. 12millions tanks is way too many = adapting every week is not often enough.

Those parameter are both embedded in the design, if you include "this" system of regulation, you need "that" amount of buffer.

This comes in second, the first question really is : "what situations can happens ?".

Most self regulating design (like your clover leaf) are designed to handle extreme situations while being wasteless : (A) 0% for long time, (B) 100% for long time, (C) 0% and then 100%, (D)100% and then 0%, (E) 100% then 0% then 100% then 0%, (D) any% (E) x% (F) y% and the list could be just summed up with "every situations".

First one say: " i want my power plant to handle EVERY situation" , then you need to know how many MW maximum, it means how many core, from that you can calculate the minimum buffer of energy, it's the 96000 MJ for a 2X2 power plant, 1 cycle of fuel worth. Only at this point you have multiple choices, you can use more buffer if you want but to reduce the building footprint and material cost the minimum buffer is the best. Then you need a mechanism to adapt the refuel timing to the electric consumption given the buffer you have choosen superior or equal to the minimum.

But if you say " my power plant willl be ON/OFF only" then you can design differently.
Or if you say " my uranium production is x per minutes" i want to only use 1/2 for power", you need to design differently.

Maybe the other uranium patch is very far away in biters land or in unknown location, the only patch you have is very small, you need nuclear power because low oil and no coal but you don't have the tech for enrichment yet.
Maybe the nuclear plant is only for the science bus and you research only 1 tech, with the starter base and outpost uses solar.
Maybe the nuclear plant is only for laser turret drain, and they use solar and accumulators for spikes.
Maybe the nuclear plant is on another planet or an asteroid and you send uranium using rockets which cost a lot.

that's how things are in my mind x)
gGeorg wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:52 am
mmmPI wrote:
Wed Oct 13, 2021 8:05 pm
it doesn't have to be constant, it has to average in the amount of cycle of fuel that you can buffer under the form of heat.

if you use enough heat pipes to store 3 cycle of fuel, the consumption can be 10% for 5 minutes then 90% for five minutes. If you set it at 50% it's fine, still no fuel loss. wasteless.
Well, by the rules I have just highlighted, you talk about partial lossless design. Thermal buffer capacity. e.g. such design which can absorb (buffer) an certain portion of heat.
Yes i understand i think what you call partial lossless design, it's partial because it's only happening if the player set the timer correctly and the consumption is somewhat predictable. Otherwise it's not lossless.

the other designs like the clover leaf would be "fully lossless" to compare. Or adapting to be lossless in every situation, in my mind :). What called "self-regulated".

gGeorg wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:52 am
I can add some other ideas for (1. When insert another cell ?) :
detect used cell unload event
detect fresh cell load event
measure time to burn the cell
i don't understand 1 and 2 it seems to me that those are just mechanism that triggers, it's not where you read information to adapt the timers contrary to the other in OP's list.

3 i think is basically using time/a timer/clock to trigger refuel, a bit like what i started to do? except mine is unfinished you cannot change timer easily. Same as not reading any value in game right ? because a cell is always burnt in 200 sec.

All the other way are indirect means to measure electric consumption to adapt refuel timers.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by gGeorg »

mmmPI wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 3:43 pm
I don't really see the difference between wasteless and lossless.
Wasteless is about : "do not feed new cell if you dont need power". (typicaly 2N design could save lot fuel becouse scalability of power output )
Looseless is more delicate, it is about make sure not even part ( %) of a cell is lost. e.g. make thermal buffer large enough for the whole cell energy.

Surprisngly, make plant loseless is quite easy. Factorio cheat sheed did a kiss of death by publish table with bunch of steam tanks. For cloverleaf you actualy need only 4 steam tanks!
Surprisngly a 2N design whic is designed as wasteless, has a logic to use only part of cores, could get a lossles property. Simply becouse, those unsed cores are great heat buffer.

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Re: All the different ways to increase the efficiency of a nuclear power plant

Post by mrvn »

gGeorg wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:00 pm
mmmPI wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 3:43 pm
I don't really see the difference between wasteless and lossless.
Wasteless is about : "do not feed new cell if you dont need power". (typicaly 2N design could save lot fuel becouse scalability of power output )
Looseless is more delicate, it is about make sure not even part ( %) of a cell is lost. e.g. make thermal buffer large enough for the whole cell energy.

Surprisngly, make plant loseless is quite easy. Factorio cheat sheed did a kiss of death by publish table with bunch of steam tanks. For cloverleaf you actualy need only 4 steam tanks!
Surprisngly a 2N design whic is designed as wasteless, has a logic to use only part of cores, could get a lossles property. Simply becouse, those unsed cores are great heat buffer.
If you consider a 2N reactor that only uses part of its reactors wasteless then that is a bad definition of wasteless because you are wasting neighbor bonuses and therefore using more fuel cells than optimal. It's the opposite of efficient. So I would always want a wastefull but looseless reactor. Never a wasteless one.

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