Does anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

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Mihle
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Does anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Mihle » Fri Nov 15, 2019 4:35 pm

Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one, or am I the only one?

Modules and beacons just skyrockets the power usage....

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Serenity » Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:22 pm

4 sets of 2*2 reactors get you 1920 MW
1 set of 2*8 reactors get you 2400 MW

So chaining more is definitely worth it. But beyond about 16 reactors you get diminishing returns from adding ever more

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by joseailton » Fri Nov 15, 2019 6:53 pm

I downloaded this nuclear power plant which consists of 28 reactors symmetrically aligned. And then because I thought it was great, I did some small changes to improve it, as follows:

1-I added pipes in all four sides, in a way that you don't have to waste your valuable time plugging it on water. all 40 pipes now can be plugged on the same side.
2-Added water pumps in all 40 entries (10 per side) to allow me to enable them as I need
3-There's one constant combinator that outputs one info signal. There's 6 levels, so you need to output any number from 1 to 6 on this signal, to generate the ammount of power as follows:

Level 1 - 0.9 GW - 8 Active Reactors /12 Active water pumps (11.36 water pumps ideally)
Level 2 - 1.4 GW - 12 Active Reactors /16 Active water pumps (17.04 water pumps ideally)
Level 3 - 1.9 GW - 16 Active Reactors /24 Active water pumps (22.72 water pumps ideally)
Level 4 - 2.7 GW - 20 Active Reactors /28 Active water pumps (28.4 water pumps ideally)
Level 5 - 3.1 GW - 24 Active Reactors /32 Active water pumps (34,08 water pumps ideally)
Level 6 - 3.9 GW - 28 Active Reactors /40 Active water pumps (40.0 water pumps ideally)

Keep in mind that each level you increase will active things symmetrically, which enhances heat on the heat exchangers, because you don't have big dead ends and also will help one reactor to benefict from adjacent ones.

Blueprint here: https://factorioprints.com/view/-LtkP28Wgdl2UnJ1cXpw

Image 1
Image

Image 2
Image

Image 3
Image

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by mrvn » Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:48 pm

Serenity wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:22 pm
4 sets of 2*2 reactors get you 1920 MW
1 set of 2*8 reactors get you 2400 MW

So chaining more is definitely worth it. But beyond about 16 reactors you get diminishing returns from adding ever more
Wrong.

Building the first 4 reactors gives you 480MW. After that every pair of reactors you add to a chain adds a constant 320MW. Adding 4 more reactors adds 640MW. Every time. There is no diminishing. Adding 4 reactors to an existing chain always gains you 160MW more than starting a new chain. Or in other words: Building 4 seats of 2*2 reactors is the same as adding 3 2x2 reactors to existing chains. Starting a new reactor is a big waste of material and also a constant loss of nuclear fuel cells.

There are some reasons why you wouldn't want to grow a chain:

1) lack of water
2) you consume a full blue belts worth of nuclear fuel

Playing without waterfill running out of lake is actually the biggest problem. Bringing water through long pipes or trains is simply not practical.

Tileable reactor:
reactor.png
Reactor at day and night
reactor.png (1.61 MiB) Viewed 1299 times

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Mihle » Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:07 pm

mrvn wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:48 pm
Serenity wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:22 pm
4 sets of 2*2 reactors get you 1920 MW
1 set of 2*8 reactors get you 2400 MW

So chaining more is definitely worth it. But beyond about 16 reactors you get diminishing returns from adding ever more
Wrong.

Building the first 4 reactors gives you 480MW. After that every pair of reactors you add to a chain adds a constant 320MW. Adding 4 more reactors adds 640MW. Every time. There is no diminishing. Adding 4 reactors to an existing chain always gains you 160MW more than starting a new chain. Or in other words: Building 4 seats of 2*2 reactors is the same as adding 3 2x2 reactors to existing chains. Starting a new reactor is a big waste of material and also a constant loss of nuclear fuel cells.

There are some reasons why you wouldn't want to grow a chain:

1) lack of water
2) you consume a full blue belts worth of nuclear fuel

Playing without waterfill running out of lake is actually the biggest problem. Bringing water through long pipes or trains is simply not practical.

Tileable reactor:
reactor.png
That is ugly

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by astroshak » Sat Nov 16, 2019 12:57 am

That is actually rather similar to what I do for my reactors ... only difference is, I extend the steam generators a bit due to the inclusion of roboports, and radars, that allow me to simply issue build orders from afar.

Ugly? Perhaps - though beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But its something more important : highly effective. And pretty much optimal.

Making new reactor plants, completely separate from an already-existing one, is a waste of resources.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Serenity » Sat Nov 16, 2019 1:32 am

mrvn wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:48 pm
Starting a new reactor is a big waste of material and also a constant loss of nuclear fuel cells.
Eh, beyond a certain point it doesn't really matter. Going from 4 to 8 reactors the bonuses are very noticeable. Later on not so much. 2 times 16 (2*8) is 4.8GW. 1 time 32 (2*16) is 4.96 GW. At that scale the loss in efficiency is negligible. Yes, you lose some power, but compared to your total power it's not that much. Especially considering how much Kovarex enrichment gives you. One centrifuge can run around 50 reactors

Sure, if you have the space keep extending it. I came up with pretty much the same design myself. But after having a few GW it's not a huge loss to build another one if that's more convenient for some reason.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Mihle » Sat Nov 16, 2019 4:37 pm

Based on what someone said I decided to design an 2x4 reactor in Sandbox mode (all water pipes to the right because thats where the water is in my save)
screenshot-tick-501332.png
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Last edited by Mihle on Sun Nov 17, 2019 7:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by disentius » Sat Nov 16, 2019 5:08 pm

Looks very nice, but wont work: throughput of water is not sufficient.
Each heat exchanger consumes 103 water/s and produces 103 steam/s. look in the new tooltip:)
heat exchanger fluid consumption-production.png
heat exchanger fluid consumption-production.png (118.68 KiB) Viewed 1177 times
The throughput table on the wiki: (https://wiki.factorio.com/Fluid_system)
Fluid througput vs distance in pipe segments.png
Fluid througput vs distance in pipe segments.png (12.68 KiB) Viewed 1177 times

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Mihle » Sat Nov 16, 2019 5:31 pm

I will add some pumps and it will, I forgot that, would have found that out when I tried it or just have looked at it more probably :)
Just forgot :)

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by mrvn » Sat Nov 16, 2019 6:48 pm

Serenity wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 1:32 am
mrvn wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:48 pm
Starting a new reactor is a big waste of material and also a constant loss of nuclear fuel cells.
Eh, beyond a certain point it doesn't really matter. Going from 4 to 8 reactors the bonuses are very noticeable. Later on not so much. 2 times 16 (2*8) is 4.8GW. 1 time 32 (2*16) is 4.96 GW. At that scale the loss in efficiency is negligible. Yes, you lose some power, but compared to your total power it's not that much. Especially considering how much Kovarex enrichment gives you. One centrifuge can run around 50 reactors

Sure, if you have the space keep extending it. I came up with pretty much the same design myself. But after having a few GW it's not a huge loss to build another one if that's more convenient for some reason.
Yes, the loss in efficiency of a 2xN reactor vs. a 2x(N+1) reactor is miniscule for large N compared to the total output. It's still always 160MW loss every time you start a new reactor. Just compared to the total that becomes small. If you compare sets of 2x10 vs sets of 2x12 the difference is the difference is also rather small, but still 160MW * number of extra sets. But that is not the scenario posted.

The scenario is 2xN vs. M * 2x2. The shorter the reactor the bigger the loss in efficiency. Below 2x2 the loss is catastrophic. At the 2x2 stage it still is big and it always is there no matter how many 2x2 reactors you build. You are throwing away 160MW for every quad reactor you build.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by mrvn » Sat Nov 16, 2019 6:55 pm

astroshak wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 12:57 am
That is actually rather similar to what I do for my reactors ... only difference is, I extend the steam generators a bit due to the inclusion of roboports, and radars, that allow me to simply issue build orders from afar.

Ugly? Perhaps - though beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But its something more important : highly effective. And pretty much optimal.

Making new reactor plants, completely separate from an already-existing one, is a waste of resources.
If I have roboports I usually place them along the reactor at the sides. Then after build they can be removed or moved further away from the line to make space for an extension. There isn't really any need to have coverage inside the reactor after build unless you place it in the middle of your base and bots keep flying over it (and need to recharge).

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Koub » Sat Nov 16, 2019 11:01 pm

Mihle wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 4:37 pm
Based on what someone said I decided to design an 2x8 reactor in Sandbox mode
It's not a 2x8 reactor :)
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by astroshak » Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:42 am

mrvn wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 6:55 pm
astroshak wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 12:57 am
That is actually rather similar to what I do for my reactors ... only difference is, I extend the steam generators a bit due to the inclusion of roboports, and radars, that allow me to simply issue build orders from afar.

Ugly? Perhaps - though beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But its something more important : highly effective. And pretty much optimal.

Making new reactor plants, completely separate from an already-existing one, is a waste of resources.
If I have roboports I usually place them along the reactor at the sides. Then after build they can be removed or moved further away from the line to make space for an extension. There isn't really any need to have coverage inside the reactor after build unless you place it in the middle of your base and bots keep flying over it (and need to recharge).
I made my build bot fueled, so bots do tend to fly over the reactors at least. And though this means more roboports added to the map, and more power demanded by them, having roboports every so often allows them to build the entire thing from a single nuclear parts train station - landfill and all.

If you are only using bots to build and are using a belt to fuel, then having removable roboports along the ends and far side (the side you are expanding upon) makes sense. That’s the beauty of Factorio - there are many ways to do things, some more efficient than others, but ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ are only defined by the question ‘is it functional?’ where things that are functional are right, and things that are not functional are wrong.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Mihle » Sun Nov 17, 2019 7:43 am

Koub wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 11:01 pm
Mihle wrote:
Sat Nov 16, 2019 4:37 pm
Based on what someone said I decided to design an 2x8 reactor in Sandbox mode
It's not a 2x8 reactor :)
I did ofc mean 2x4....I don't know why I wrote 2x8....

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by FasterJump » Thu Nov 21, 2019 9:59 am

mrvn wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:48 pm
[...]
Tileable reactor:
reactor.png
So I'm not the only one to use tileable nuclear setups. It's very similar to the one I built in my 1rpm base. In my thread you can find the blueprint for the "head" (the controller with very simple circuits) and the "body" parts (2x2).
Pros: best efficiently, easy to add 2x2 blocks when needed, activate only when needed
Cons: ugly (only axial symmetry), Big

Image
[/spoiler]

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by astroshak » Thu Nov 21, 2019 11:28 am

Big is not a con. There isn’t any such thing as a small nuclear setup when trying to provide a lot of power.

Also, if you think nuclear is big on a per MW basis, look at solar.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by mrvn » Mon Nov 25, 2019 12:34 pm

astroshak wrote:
Thu Nov 21, 2019 11:28 am
Big is not a con. There isn’t any such thing as a small nuclear setup when trying to provide a lot of power.

Also, if you think nuclear is big on a per MW basis, look at solar.
But solar can be beautiful. You have panels and accumulators. You can paint pretty pictures. :)

Note to self: Spell out a giant factorio with the accumulators on the next game. Or build a giant gear wheel.

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Re: Do anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by astroshak » Mon Nov 25, 2019 8:53 pm

Was not remarking upon the designs that can be done with solar, only that compared to nuclear, it has a massive footprint for the same amount of power. Thus, big cannot be a con of nuclear, not when the other popular option is even bigger.

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Re: Does anyone else build multiple quad Nuclear Reactors rather than one big one?

Post by Hannu » Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:40 am

Usually I use 6 reactor units. I like to build separate powerplants in my railworld like in real world. I do not use beacons so I need usually one or two 6 reactor units and one or two coal plants at approximately same output. Few GW total.

It may not be technically optimal solution but practical difference to optimal solution is very small. It is very easy to produce few extra fuel cells and transport them to powerplants.

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