Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

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Nebabon
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Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Nebabon »

Hi all

I am wondering what the most efficient layout would be using steam? I've read it is 3 pumps into ~20 boilers into 12 engines but it was really old info...

Thanks!

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by elkar »

1.3x boiler/engine ratio and 1 pump per pipe. Max two.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by slay_mithos »

Well, I don't know if it's the most efficient, but 1 pump can do for 10 steam engines.

And I found out that 14 boilers for that line seems to be a good number, to keep the 100°C, even when demand is high.

Again, the only thing "optimal" in this is 10 engines for 1 pump, but that's a good basis to start.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by BurnHard »

1 pump, 13(99% max load) - 14 (100% load) boilers, 10 engines

repeat :)

But as said, any numbers work .. roughly 1.31 boilers for every engine (eg 5 engines = 5*1.31= 6.55 = 7 boilers, one pump.
Just don't feed more than 10 engines and 14 boilers with one pump.

If you want to go a step further, store hot water in tanks. I have tried a setup with only 15 boilers but 100 engines. The hot water after the boilers was stored in large (oil)tanks. At day when my solar worked the boilers had time to fill the storage with hot water, at night the steam engines drained the tanks.

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ssilk
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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by ssilk »

Nice. I also thought about it. How much tanks?
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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Coolthulhu »

Tanks depend on your other energy sources. Stable steam-only network doesn't benefit from tanks.
Tanks can be built between engines and it is often a good idea to built them that way.

Both of those make it a bit hard to approximate how many tanks are optimal. I guess we could simplify it with the assumption that engines are instantly 0% on during the day and instantly 100% on during the night as if we had infinite panels. Lamps would be a good way to simulate this.
Sounds like a moderately easy experiment, I might even do it today.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Zourin »

BurnHard wrote: I have tried a setup with only 15 boilers but 100 engines. The hot water after the boilers was stored in large (oil)tanks. At day when my solar worked the boilers had time to fill the storage with hot water, at night the steam engines drained the tanks.
This is very interesting! Having an auxiliary power station with 1 boiler, some tanks, and a cluster of steam engines behind an accumulator coupling would be an interesting design for emergency backup power stored-ready in the tanks rather than needing a full power station.

As long as it's not being tapped regularly (meaning you're not running accumulator power most of the time), it'll have time to 'save' power for when things get gnarly on the borders, since it only turns on when the accumulator power starts to drain. Just requires a little bit of manual wiring and a lot of tech, but you can get a lot of 'burst' electricity, even at night.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Coolthulhu »

Nope - you can't get good "burst" with just 1 boiler. You need enough boilers to ensure output temperature stays at constant 100 degrees at max pump usage.
Currently, a boiler can only heat up water that flows through it, so 1 boiler and 5 tanks would result in 5 tanks full of lukewarm water. Unless you somehow ensured a constant weak drain (like 1 engine powering 3 lamps or so) - it would allow the boiler to very slowly heat up all the water to 100 degrees.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by ssilk »

Add a pump at the end of the tanks and make a circulation back to the boiler?
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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by BurnHard »

Thats why I took 15 boilers. You need to have enouth boilers to heat water to 100°C at full pumping power. But As I said, it was just an experiment, in a real game it's once again just solar and accumulators then :)

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Zourin »

ssilk wrote:Add a pump at the end of the tanks and make a circulation back to the boiler?
interesting, but the problem is that adding a pump anywhere near a steam engine causes a total water blowout (0 water in system) unless you're talking about source pumps and not the new fluid pumps. I don't know if this has been fixed or not recently.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Coolthulhu »

Never heard about it and I've tried to use a fluid pump to "boost" natural water flow to my engines (didn't work, slowed it down).
Did you report it? I can't find it in bugs section.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by elkar »

Wow that idea with water tanks full of hot water seems interesting.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Zourin »

Coolthulhu wrote:Never heard about it and I've tried to use a fluid pump to "boost" natural water flow to my engines (didn't work, slowed it down).
Did you report it? I can't find it in bugs section.
using a fluid pump to 'push' water (or oil) into a long steam engine array (eg. 'pressurize it') causes the entire fluid system to rapidly drain and destroy fluid (eg, 'blowing it all out the back end'). I wasn't sure if it was a bug or just some aspect of steam engines I didn't understand.



As for the OP. I usually go for three rows of three steam engines, attached in parallel to a 10-series of boilers, and then mirror that arrangement on the opposite side for a 1 water pump, 1 fuel line, 20 boiler, 18 steam engine layout. I've not dealt with the 3:4 ratio, since it's just easier to build 10-20 boilers/inserters with shift-clicks. The boiler rows are separated by 1 block to allow a small wood electric pole to route power appropriately. I'll need to get a screenshot sooner or later.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by Coolthulhu »

Zourin wrote:using a fluid pump to 'push' water (or oil) into a long steam engine array (eg. 'pressurize it') causes the entire fluid system to rapidly drain and destroy fluid (eg, 'blowing it all out the back end'). I wasn't sure if it was a bug or just some aspect of steam engines I didn't understand.
It might be the pump slowing down the flow.
Fluid pump has an upper limit on its fluid transfer that's much lower than maximum natural flow.

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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by ssilk »

Yeah, you need to place some in parallel of course...
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Re: Most Efficient Steam EngineLayout?

Post by DarkenDragon »

sorry for necroing this thread, but I would like to ask about something along this topic. currently I've been running this exact set up except after the burners, i'll have 2 rows of steam engines for compactness, but I find that when they're all running my water pressure is lower and thus they're not running at 100% performance.

is this because of the split in the water and thus the pump is not able to produce enough water? I fixed this issue with adding a new off shore pump and I was watching it and saw that my original pumps were not moving as fast, but the new pump is moving very quickly.

I did hear how turns and forks in liquids can change the pressure. is that what im experiencing?

are the formulas you guys are putting out based off of 1 single line of piping with no forks at all?

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