RTGs (+some minor things)

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Proxy
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RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by Proxy »

TL;DR
1. 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
Main part:
1. Plutonium, constantly decaying material made from recycling depleted Nuclear Fuel
2. RTGs, Lower Power Generators only using Plutonium as Fuel.
Long explainations
1. Diode
Image

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.
2. Power Network GUI changes.
Image

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
the Energy production and Consumption diagrams could also be as Pie charts. that is actually not part of the sauggestion it would just be interesting to see the Consumption of a megabase as a Pie chart
3. Trains being able to use Fuel from their own Wagons (maybe as an option inside the train's GUI)
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!

Main thing:

- Plutonium
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.

- RTGs
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
Image
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.
Last edited by Proxy on Mon Dec 18, 2017 12:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

bobucles
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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by bobucles »

Actually a nuclear fuel's half life doesn't really matter for its longevity. All the half life does is provide the initial spark of neutrons to get the reaction going. The real powerhouse behind nuclear fuel is that once a nucleus breaks apart, it releases at least 2 more neutrons to blast two other atoms apart. Those atoms shoot off 2 more neutrons each, and their victims shoot off 2 more neutrons each. At that point the half life no longer matters because the "critical mass" is causing a chain reaction a million times faster than natural decay. Whether or not this reaction actually happens is very much like an "on/off" switch. You either have enough chain reactions to keep it going, or it collapses back down to ordinary half life radiation.

At least that's the basics of it. If you wish to start your own nuclear program I'd suggest collecting smoke detectors. :D

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by Proxy »

as long as you stay below the critical mass it should just slowly radiate away it's energy.

kinda glad "Critiac mass" is not a thing in factorio, otherwise my Steel chests full of U-235 wouldn't exist anymore... and my base.

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by TheKingOfFailure »

+1 for pie charts and a reworked Electric Network GUI. I couldn't explain what half of it means, I only understand it through practice. Being able to choose from multiple graphs would be a really nice feature, but at least labeling the axis and just pUTTIN SOME DANG NUMBERS ON THE SCREEN would be quite nice!! :D

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by stm »

I'd love to have the diode. It is definately missing!
Too bad your suggestions don't conform to the required format and thus will be ignored...

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by olafthecat »

[Sorry for the block of text :( ]
I understand what you are getting at here, I am on the triple science GCSE course! :) The half-life idea would be very cool, but most players wouldn't get to the stage in which the fuel would run out, as after all, 87.7 years is long time, even in factorio. I would estimate that you would have to play for 2104 hours for it to run out, something that only the most hardcore players would be able to achieve. It would basically be a virtually free power source that could last for virtually ever. To stop players from taking advantage of this, I suggest them having a very low power output and a high pollution factor. As well as what you have already mentioned, you could add 'special inserters' that do not require fuel or electricity input, reducing the strain on your power sources. They would mainly be used to power small outposts, rather that having to rely on fiddly solar or even more fiddly steam or nuclear. However, because of the high pollution given off by the device, you would have to use turrets to defend it. Speaking about turrets, why not add in a low power variant that turns off automatically when there is no threat, without the need for circuits. These turrets would do less damage than their power eating variants, but could be easily powered by the RTGs.
stm wrote:I'd love to have the diode. It is definately missing!
Too bad your suggestions don't conform to the required format and thus will be ignored...
Enough from me and agreeing with stm I suggest that you convert you format to the required one :D .
Cheers for making my day! ;)
Gonna start playing again with 0.16 build.
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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by olafthecat »

You could also use it for heat generation, to boil water.
You could then pipe the steam into either steam turbines or steam engines to produce power!
If you added temperature as a survival concept within the game then you could use it to stay warm!
A good idea!

NOTE: Please put the introduction into a correct format!
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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by Proxy »

There is a format...

why did i never heard about this.

what is wrong with this format, i'm like 60% sure it gets all the information displayed that it needs

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by Koub »

It's more kind of a template we encourage using, because it makes things a lot easier to grasp when reading a suggestion. It also forces the Suggestions's poster to think to his own suggestion with a certain mindset. This may help people refine their own suggestions.
The thing is here :
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=47316.
You're not obliged to use it, but forcing yourself to do so might help your suggestions to be more read, more understood, and more debated if there is interest.
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by olafthecat »

Well I like it!
Could be added as an extension on the nuclear stuff!
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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by thereaverofdarkness »

Proxy wrote:kinda glad "Critiac mass" is not a thing in factorio, otherwise my Steel chests full of U-235 wouldn't exist anymore... and my base.
You can't set off the neutron chain reaction simply by placing a lot of Plutonium together. It has to be compressed into a smaller volume, and that's pretty difficult to do, really difficult to accidentally do.

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by olafthecat »

You could throw a bunch into a pressure chamber.
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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by BlakeMW »

thereaverofdarkness wrote: You can't set off the neutron chain reaction simply by placing a lot of Plutonium together. It has to be compressed into a smaller volume, and that's pretty difficult to do, really difficult to accidentally do.
You actually can, depending on the isotopes and purity. You might have trouble making a supercritical mass because it will expand as it heats up, but should be able to get a nice radioactive lava and I bet if you kept adding more would actually get kind some kind of explosion - not a high yield one, but enough to blow apart the mass.

You can't make a critical mass of natural uranium by just piling up lots of it.

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by bobucles »

Setting off a nuclear chain reaction is easy. Setting off nuclear explosion is hard because once a reaction begins, it immediately wants to expand and stop reacting. All the important stuff has to happen in a fraction of a second and it has to be precise, otherwise you get a hot mess. It may be an impressive hot mess, but it won't go boom. A fair number of nukes have "oopsied" through the last dozens of years. They don't go boom because if it doesn't explode right, it doesn't explode at all.

Modern nukes actually have dials to control how powerful they are. The amount of material is the same but it basically controls how efficient the explosion is.

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by BlakeMW »

It's probably not even exactly known what would happen if you put a large pile of high-purity U-235 or Pu-239 - I mean you'd die of radiation poisoning pretty quick. But I'm pretty sure no-one has ever made a large pile of extremely valuable fissile isotope to see what happens, because it's super valuable, and they don't want to die and it's super valuable.

I think the first possibility is it would melt through the floor of the chest and mingle with the dirt. If it can burrow its way into the earth like reverse-lava this would be bad for forming a supercritical mass.

Next possibility, well, guarantee really: it gets hot enough to vaporize. Plutonium has a boiling point of ~3200 degrees, and uranium 4100 degrees. It will get this hot so it will vaporize, which would be extremely bad for the goal of forming a supercritical mass since gas likes to occupy a lot more volume than liquid, though it is a form of explosion (and it does seem worth mentioning the Gaseous fission reactor concept)

It seems possible you'd end up with a pool of boiling plutonium with a temperature at around the boiling point of plutonium, whenever it cools down enough that parts of it congeal into a critical mass that part will vaporize and expand again making it subcritical. The real question is whether this would be a kind of steady-state or if it would be a more volatile situation, like maybe vaporization events create shockwaves that cause a supercritical mass which then vaporizes with enough force to blast the pool apart, or maybe delayed neutrons would be enough to do this (i.e. after the mass has been together long enough to vaporize, it's going to keep reacting for long enough to explode violently). I don't think you'd get kiloton yield explosions, but maybe kg yield explosions (i.e. 1kg of tnt), enough explosive force to blast the boiling pool apart along with whatever is trying to contain it.

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by darkfrei »

A little bit math:
P_0 - Start power of new RITEG, [kW].
P_t - actual power of RITEG [kW], after t seconds.
t_HL - half life of isotope, [s].

So, if our entity is t seconds old, then power production will be:
P_t = P_0/(2^(t/t_HL/)) [kW].

Total amount of energy of new RITEG (examples):
t_HL = 2000 s; P_0 = 1000 kW; E = 3.0 GJ
t_HL = 2000 s; P_0 = 2000 kW; E = 6.0 GJ
t_HL = 1000 s; P_0 = 1200 kW; E = 2.0 GJ
t_HL = 1000 s; P_0 = 2400 kW; E = 4.0 GJ
t_HL = 2000 s; P_0 = 2400 kW; E = 7.2 GJ

Total energy is:
E = P_0 * t_HL / (ln(2))

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Re: RTGs (+some minor things)

Post by darkfrei »

Proxy wrote: 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!
It's my mod mineral goo! https://mods.factorio.com/mods/darkfrei/MineralGoo

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