TL;DR1. Diode, one way Energy transmission
2. Numbers in the Powernetwork GUI for better understanding
3. Trains grabing fuel from their own wagons if needed
4. biters/Bases dropping loot, like Resources
1. Plutonium, constantly decaying material made from recycling depleted Nuclear Fuel
2. RTGs, Lower Power Generators only using Plutonium as Fuel.
Long explainations1. Diode
the entire point is just that this way an Emergency generator could full supply a part of the Factory instead of running the entire factory with a fraction of the power required to fully supply it.
also it would only let excess Energy pass, so if you got a main Generation of 20 MW and you got things connected to it without a Diode that use 15 MW they will take priority and only 5MW of Power would make it through the first diode, same for every layer below.
I have no idea if it would actually be useful.
just a little change of the Power Network GUI by adding actual numbers to the bars.
Numbers of the Production show: current Production / maximum Production
Numbers of the Usage show: current Consumption / maximum Consumption (if both are equal the system is 100% saturated and runs at max speed)
Numbers of the Accumulators show: current stored Energy / maximum stored Energy
simple idea, got a train with a wagon behind it filled with coal (or solid fuel) and it will take that as fuel if needed.
only good this would do is when you got some extremly long rails and don't want refuel stations everywhere... sure you still need to supply the wagon with fuel, but it requires a lot less stations that way i guess.
4. give biters (the enemy) loot, maybe they drop some raw materials like ore, coal or stone. and then biter bases could drop a load of said loot too...
that way biter farms could be a thing and you had a reaso nt odestroy them... loot!
idea is simple when recycling a depleted fuel cell it has a chance to also output Plutonium, which would be used in Nukes and RTGs
so in order to make Nukes you would require a functional Nuclear Reactor setup.
in addition, how about Plutonium is conctantly losing it's durability even if not sitting in an RTG. this would mean that a base using some RTGS with a chest full of Plutonium as supply wouldn't work as the Plutonium inside the chest would decay as fast as the one inside the RTGs.
btw, in RL Plutonium decays into U-234 but for Factorio's sake lets say it decays into U-238 or nothing.
low power production that works everywhere and holds for decades. is basically just a (maybe) 1x1 or 1x2 Tile with an internal inventory for Items
Fuel could be used up like science packs and the percentage of the fuel left would determine the energy produced, the fuel would also slow down while being used up. because of how half-lifes work.
Plutonium has a half-life of 87.7 Years
The actual Production is shown in Green but could also work if it was the red line, it would just make it more rough.
Plutonium also has a production of around 0.54 W/g so a Mg of Plutonium would make 0.54MW of Power for 87.7 years and then half the production.
but because factorio this should prolly be multiplied by 10 so each gram of Plutonium makes 5.4W and lets say one lump of Plutonium is 1kg so one RTG with a single item of Plutonium would make 5.4kW which is enough to run a lamp for 87.7 years. (this also implies being able to put multiple items into the RTG to increase the Power output while still keeping the same half-life per item)
maybe i'm an idiot and these ideas are useless, maybe not. I don't know, reason why i post it here for people to judge.
Go easy on me tho, i only played this game for 340h, i'm pretty much still a noob.