Bus/Rail oil products

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zOldBulldog
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Bus/Rail oil products

Post by zOldBulldog »

I have been looking to improve my bus and rail designs. One of the issues that came up was to decide what products derived from Oil are worth putting on the bus or transport by train to where they get consumed.

My conclusion was Lubricant, Petroleum Gas and Sulfuric acid for the bus/trains. Excess capacity I used to produce solid fuel sent only to trains and that later I plan to replace with Nuclear fuel.

But I wonder if anybody has a more effective strategy and why?



This is the rationale that got me to that conclusion (please point out any flaws in my logic):

- Non-solid oil products are easy to transport and use little space on the bus. In a space pinch they are even easy to braid in the same lane as a solid product.
- Lubricant is used quite a bit.
- Most other products derived from oil can be produced with a single chem plant step "on site", so that you don't have to place on the bus or transport those products (like plastic, sulfur, batteries, etc).
- Of course, more derived things like red and blue circuits are used massively and not only deserve a lane/train but eventually even get their own train outpost to produce them in massive quantities.
- I toyed with the idea of transporting llight oil for flamethrower ammo, but I decided against the extra clutter and to either produce it in a specialty artillery production outpost or to just use the 10% less effective crude oil directly in the flamethrower turrets.

Looking forward to your opinions.

SoShootMe
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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by SoShootMe »

zOldBulldog wrote:
Fri Feb 10, 2023 11:41 am
I have been looking to improve my bus and rail designs. One of the issues that came up was to decide what products derived from Oil are worth putting on the bus or transport by train to where they get consumed.

My conclusion was Lubricant, Petroleum Gas and Sulfuric acid for the bus/trains. Excess capacity I used to produce solid fuel sent only to trains and that later I plan to replace with Nuclear fuel.
To me the main reason to transport/bus lubricant is to consider the alternative, which is to transport/bus heavy oil and make lubricant where required. That makes much less sense because heavy oil has no other practical use except cracking to light oil, which is also produced where the heavy oil is.

Petroleum gas is more complicated. The biggest consumer is typically plastic, which also needs coal. On a bus, belts of coal and pipelines of petroleum gas combined take up less space than the plastic you can produce from them (how much less depends on belt tier). However, the reverse is true for rail capacity: it takes around two wagons of petroleum gas and coal to make each one of plastic, or even more without productivity modules.

For sulphuric acid, applying similar reasoning to the things mentioned above for lubricant and petroleum gas, I think there is no clear winner. Though two steps, It can be made "on site" from petroleum gas for both batteries and processing units, given that batteries need iron plate directly and processing units need iron plate indirectly, provided water is available. In practice, early demands are low and putting it on the bus maximises chemical plant efficiency, while later, supplying sulphuric acid by train simplifies those production areas (naturally extending to mining uranium ore, the only other use).

On train fuel (I assume that's your solid fuel comment was about): rocket fuel provides a substantial performance improvement over solid fuel and is available relatively early. Nuclear fuel is much less of an improvement over rocket fuel and very much "end game" in my view.
I toyed with the idea of transporting llight oil for flamethrower ammo, but I decided against the extra clutter and to either produce it in a specialty artillery production outpost or to just use the 10% less effective crude oil directly in the flamethrower turrets.
Light oil for flamethrower turrets conserves crude oil (eg with full productivity you get nearly as much damage per unit of crude oil, plus "free" petroleum gas) but in practice the amount used is so low I think the effect is insignificant.

zOldBulldog
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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by zOldBulldog »

Thank you SoShootMe for sharing your thought process,

I did end up putting Lubricant, Petroleum Gas and Sulfuric on the bus for the early base/mall. Everything else I manufactured locally with a single chem plant as all other items were already on the bus.

For later... I think I will end up making chem outposts near the oilfields and export the 3 plus plastic (sulfuric is also needed for Uranium mining). I use LTN and Bulk Loaders, and have extra cache-tanks plus simple logic for fluids, so traffic is reduced, load/unload takes 2-5 seconds and there is always a good large "cached" amount of any resource available all the time. I might adjust this plan, but I *think* that all of the other materials will likely already be in use where needed, so I might avoid excess train complexity.

shopt
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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by shopt »

If you are trying to conserve crude, heavy oil is actually the best flamethrower fuel. But I agree that in most setups they consume so little you may as well use whichever fuel is logistically easiest (which tends to be crude most of the time).

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by SoShootMe »

shopt wrote:
Sun Feb 12, 2023 6:50 am
If you are trying to conserve crude, heavy oil is actually the best flamethrower fuel.
If you're trying to conserve crude, you want productivity modules, and with 30% productivity on heavy oil cracking: damage ratio (1.1/1.05) x light:heavy recipe ratio (30/40) x productivity factor (1.3) = 2.1% more damage from light oil compared to the heavy oil used to create it.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by shopt »

There isn't a linear ratio between DPS and fuel used due to the flight time of the flames and any misses due to trailing the target. But even if we assume there is, heavy oil cracking has one of the longest payoff times from productivity modules. It will take quite a while to save an equivalent amount of crude to what the prod3 modules cost. 33% (unmoduled crude saving by using heavy oil) is a much bigger number than 2.1% (once you have made a heavy upfront investment and assumed unrealistic combat conditions).

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by Tertius »

I'd like to talk about my designs to perhaps bring another perspective into the discussion.
I created 4 different oil processing production lines to support my 5k SPM megabase, currently in development in a sandbox. It's somewhat coincidence the ratios and belt capacity seem like tailored to exactly this 5k SPM use case - you can of course make smaller lines.

The first two designs use crude oil for advanced oil processing as input, as well as coal, iron plates and copper plates. And water of course.
As output, the first one creates explosives, sulfuric acid and batteries.
The second one creates sulfur, lubricant, and more batteries.

Both are located next to each other and connected with a huge belt bus to their consumers, which are mainly the science pack production lines. For the megabase, 1 instance of each is sufficient. The output is somewhat balanced between both, planned to also support a mall not yet connected.
Their input is supposed to be delivered by train (however, I didn't build the stations yet, currently they just get it from infinity chests/pipes).


The third design uses crude oil for advanced oil processing as input, as well as coal and water.
As output, it creates plastic bars, and plastic bars only.
This is decoupled from the above two and duplicated multiple times due to the high demand of plastic bars. They get their input via train and ship their output via train as well. I don't know yet how many lines I need for this.


The 4th design uses coal for coal liquefaction as input, and water. And two barrels of heavy oil for startup.
As output, it creates rocket fuel, and rocket fuel only.
The output is delivered via belt to the rocket silos and satellite production more or less nearby. Input is delivered by train.
For 5k SPM, I need exactly 2 production lines of this.

I use coal liquefaction for rocket fuel, because of the abundance of coal and because solid fuel is better created with light oil instead of petroleum gas, so just crack heavy oil to light oil to feed the best solid fuel recipe. So if one wants to consume coal and preserve crude oil, this one seems the best thing to do.
It's interesting how all the intermediates are processed and fed back and reprocessed again within the plant, but actually the plant is a black box. Input coal+water, output rocket fuel.


I didn't connect a mall yet. If I do, I plan to bring the output of the first two lines by belt bus to the mall, which is planned to be built opposite to (but near) the science pack production.

Every production line is fully beaconed. Full production modules in all of the production buildings and speed modules from beacons (8-beacon variant with long alternating lines of beacons/machines).

A tiny amount of rocket fuel is extracted and fed into the uranium factory to create nuclear fuel for the trains. It's then distributed via logistic network to appropriate stations to supply the trains.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by SoShootMe »

shopt wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2023 12:53 am
There isn't a linear ratio between DPS and fuel used due to the flight time of the flames and any misses due to trailing the target.
That is a good point. The benefit of light oil over heavy oil for flamethrowers is already small in the best possible case and this will reduce it (potentially making it negative) in practice. (I think it adds weight to my general feeling that the damage bonus is poorly balanced, but that's a separate issue.)
It will take quite a while to save an equivalent amount of crude to what the prod3 modules cost.
That completely depends on how you weight crude oil (which is the only thing modules in heavy oil cracking contribute to saving, ignoring water) vs other resources (also used in production of modules). For otherwise beaconed and moduled petroleum gas production, adding modules and extra beacons for heavy oil cracking will save the oil consumed to produce the modules quite quickly. It will obviously take further time to recoup the "crude oil equivalent" of the other resources.
33% (unmoduled crude saving by using heavy oil) is a much bigger number than 2.1% (once you have made a heavy upfront investment and assumed unrealistic combat conditions).
I'm not sure how you arrived at 33% but it doesn't make sense to compare the numbers, except to show that there's more benefit in switching from crude to heavy oil than from heavy to light oil, which is a different matter.

In any case, I think we both agree that switching away from crude oil in flamethrowers will save a significant fraction of the crude oil used by flamethrowers, but it is a small amount in absolute terms.

shopt
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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by shopt »

Yep, I think we agreed on all the major points and just arguing over minor ones.

33% is just 40/30 - 1, ie. the amount of extra heavy oil (after cracking to light oil) you need to get the same firing duration. Or equivalently the amount of extra duration you get by using heavy instead of light. If you have 40 heavy oil, you can flame for 13.3s with that. If you crack it to light oil you can only flame for 10s.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by Koub »

SoShootMe wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2023 5:11 pm
[...] switching away from crude oil in flamethrowers will save a significant fraction of the crude oil used by flamethrowers [...]
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Very significant indeed like 100% probably :mrgreen:
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by mrvn »

Why do you want sulfuric acid barrels on the bus? Or did you mean put a pipe next to the bus?

As far as I see it only has 3 uses:

1) uranium ore
2) blue circuits
3) batteries

The uranium ore is easier served with fluid trains. No need to ship back empty barrels. Putting barrels on the bus means you also need to return the empty barrels. In both cases it's easy to overfill on empty barrels and deadlock. So I'm really not a fan of it.

Why not put a rail line along the bus and put a fluid station wherever you produce the blue circuits and batteries. Same for lubricant for the flying robot frames or the faster belts at the mall (if you want those). And if you have that rail line you might even ship in some iron, copper or steel plates mid bus at some later time.

As for plastic I would produce that off the bus and ship it in via train. Put it with all the refineries making a big oil factory connected by trains. Easier to ship coal to that and bring back plastic, sulfur, solid fuel, rocket fuel as solids and lubricant and sulfuric acid as liquid. If you need explosives I would produce them there too as you already have sulfur, coal and water there anyway.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by zOldBulldog »

Update: I ended up making and transporting (bus or rail) only propane, lubricant and sulfuric. The rest I am producing at the point of consumption.

So far it is working extremely well and I found no reason to regret it. Builds are compact and efficient.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by mrvn »

So you produce (or plan to) solid fuel from propane to make rocket fuel for the satelite and rockets parts in the silo?

More efficient to use light oil. Solid fuel and later rocket fuel makes great train fuel too. Even fuel for steam engines if you are low on coal.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by zOldBulldog »

mrvn wrote:
Tue Mar 21, 2023 3:51 am
So you produce (or plan to) solid fuel from propane to make rocket fuel for the satelite and rockets parts in the silo?

More efficient to use light oil. Solid fuel and later rocket fuel makes great train fuel too. Even fuel for steam engines if you are low on coal.
I am not worried about efficiency of solid fuel for trains. They use little enough.

For high production stuff... like white science, it will have its own production line, probably from all-raw materials (have not decided yet but that seems to be the direction I'm following for all of my volume items), and I might even make it a module that I repeat over and over if I decide to go for a true "mega" build... although I doubt I'll bother with that.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by Tertius »

zOldBulldog wrote:
Tue Mar 21, 2023 11:31 am
I am not worried about efficiency of solid fuel for trains. They use little enough.
If it comes to train fuel, it's not about efficiency of fuel production. Different fuel has different top speed and vehicle acceleration. Acceleration is very important in your base to reduce congestion, because it makes stopped trains in front of signals or stations going away much faster. Acceleration difference between solid fuel and rocket fuel is significant, and between rocket fuel and nuclear fuel again significant.

Since you're not aiming for optimized production, I'd like to give an example of a highly optimized production line just to show how things could look like at the other end. It's a nice black box: in goes coal+water, out comes rocket fuel. Bootstrap with 2-3 barrels of heavy oil. It's for consuming all that omnipresent coal usually nobody bothers to mine.
It's optimized, because it doesn't waste precious crude oil using the not efficient petroleum gas-to-solid fuel recipe, but instead creates light oil from heavy oil for the optimal recipe and almost completely skips the inefficient petroleum gas recipe - that gas is consumed just as byproduct.
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zOldBulldog
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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by zOldBulldog »

Yes, my plan is to eventually have an optimized production module for nuclear fuel for the trains.

Same with Rocket Fuel, if memory serves it is used in Space Science somewhere. *that* I will definitely optimize.

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Re: Bus/Rail oil products

Post by Tertius »

The "optimized production module for nuclear fuel" would be only two or three centrifuges that pull a rocket fuel from time to time and refine it to nuclear fuel with some U-235 surplus of the uranium factory. Very low throughput needed. Nuclear fuel lasts for an eternity. It's optimized enough, if you use the maximum amount of production modules along the production line from crude oil (or coal) to heavy/light oil to solid fuel to rocket fuel to nuclear fuel. Since there are so many intermediate steps, the bonuses from the production modules multiply quite good.
The actual challenge is not nuclear fuel, it's its precursor rocket fuel due to its long recipe duration.

The fluids I transport by train are crude oil and sulfuric acid. There is no way around transporting sulfuric acid with fluid trains, because it is used by uranium mines far away. I placed the oil-related production line responsible for all the minor oil-dependent intermediates (explosives, batteries, sulfur, sulfuric acid, lubricant) near the yellow science production line and near the mall, so I was able to skip shipping all these but instead used a pipeline or belt.
Rocket fuel is also produced by (above mentioned production line) reasonably near the satellite production and the rocket silos, so I also transport these by belt. Trains are very inefficient for rocket fuel due to the small stack size.

The only solid oil product actually shipped by train is plastic due to the very high demand and because it wasn't clear yet how much space is needed. So I uncoupled production and consumption and linked both by train. As next optimization step, I need to check how it is possible to place the plastic bar producers near the plastic bar consumers without intermediate trains. It's just pushing production lines around and connecting them.

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