Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by bobingabout » Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:12 pm

MeduSalem wrote:At this point I would also like to suggest that the Boilers should have a second pipe-input as well (on the opposite site of the Steam Output)... which can be used to insert Crude Oil/Heavy/Light Oil or Petroleum gas to burn the stuff directly instead of having to use solid fuel:
steam power1.png
I second this. I've been waiting for this sort of thing way back in 0.10 when they said 0.13 would bring oil burning for power, and fluid overhaul.
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Fatmice » Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:18 pm

I agree, boiler should be able to burn liquid
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by MalcolmCooks » Mon Nov 14, 2016 2:50 pm

Damn looking really good!
I haven't read all of the responses to the thread but here are my thoughts:
Reactors cannot explode the way a nuclear bomb does; when the devs talk about exploding reactors I think they mean steam explosions, which are a big danger in the case of a meltdown. Although with the heat pipes idea it seems like the reactors have an intermediary heat exchange fluid, which we could just imagine as being an inert gas. In any case, whatever the heat exchange fluid is, if it cannot cool the reactor effectively enough, then its pressure will increase until it ruptures the reactor, causing an explosion. And I think that even though in real life nuclear reactors are relatively safe, this is because we have decided to implement safe designs and very strict safety protocols to avoid accidents. In Factorio, there should be an element of danger because it fits with the theme of the game.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Karamel » Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:00 pm

sabriath wrote:Lastly, the temperature of steam doesn't matter, it's pressure difference that moves the turbines in an engine; unfortunately, you never added pressure to the game mechanics.
Actually, the current system models pressure reasonably well: pressure in a pipe or container is amount of liquid / max capacity. To expand this to gases, all you need to do is remove the cap for gases - that is, a pipe segment that can have 10 units of water can carry any amount of steam. Then simply have the boilers generate several units of steam per unit of water, and the cooling towers do the reverse, and have the steam engines and turbines have two fluidboxes each and generate electricity when steam flows between them. Also, forget about steam engines "destroying" steam and relegate that to a separate "atmospheric vent".

You could then expand the "safe but inefficient, or efficient but dangerous" to non-nuclear power: simply have the pipes have a maximum pressure they can take before exploding, and include advanced boilers or operation modes which can generate steam pressures way over that. Then you just need a pressure sensor and controllable valves (rather than just pumps) to turbocharge your old power plant. Increasing power output without major investment could even act as a simple incentive to get acquainted with circuit network.

Or you could base steam pressure on temperature. If you have steam engines or turbines cause a pressure drop depending on how much power they're generating, and keep the mass constant, they'll effecively cool the steam, but not so much it'll turn to water again. To get maximum efficiency from such system you need to control the boilers to get the steam reaching the tower as close to condensation point as possible: if it's hotter, you're losing energy in the tower, but if it's not, an engine isn't outputting as much power as it could. If cooling towers also have a limited heat removal capability (so the hotter the steam the less gets condensed per tick), fluctuations in power demand provide plenty of chances for optimization through control logic, especially if you're running in high-pressure mode with potential for steam explosions.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by MrGrim » Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:24 pm

For everyone bringing up the impossibility of explosions please see:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... wer-plant/

Significant destructive consequences for mismanaging power generation would be a welcome addition, imo. If some players want to reload rather than take on the challenge of dealing with the aftermath of such an event then so be it. Their choice.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Andrzejef » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:48 pm

As I've said, I don't like the idea of explosion as such, because nothing in the world just "go pop". Instead I think what was already proposed, a wave of heat, huge pollution, occasional small fires (imo best described by ThePhoenixian, here) would do just fine.
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by GoldenPorkchop80 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:36 pm

Now all we need are nukes, standardized combinator processors, and planes. :)
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by razorscarface » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:44 pm

I see a lot of people are talking about making the nuclear side realistic which I think is awesome. However, the water pump doesn't seem to be realistic. Does this mean that the beginning pump will be updated to start by running off of coal/wood to make it realistic? Then following pumps will run off electricity once the system is up and running? Then if say you run out of coal your complete electrical system would stop. I like the game even with the perpetual water pumps. :) Keep up the great work.

I do feel that nuclear weapons would completely unbalance the game. The turret crawl is already powerful enough. Unless there will be mutated bugs that are immune to radiation and, for added fun, glow in the dark.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Maxi3000 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:41 pm

How about a machine that increase pressure, so the boiling point is higher and for eache pipe/engine the pressure fells, but it is still steam and it can be longer used for the engines?
Of corse, the energy consumption increases exponential, so if the reactor is bigger is can have more pressure and is in one point most efficiency. So you must test a long, and copy-paste doesn't help much :)

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by factoriouzr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:10 pm

First of all, I like where you are going with this. It shouldn't be required to use nuclear to know circuit wiring as you said, but be able to make really cool complex setups if desired.

I like the idea of the explosion. I think it should be medium to large as this would give players at the end game something fun to do. Make big explosions, and make them near biters for the added fun.

I don't like the idea that someone suggested about radiation unless it can be cleaned up automatically by construction robots without giving them the order to clean it up.

Also construction robots should be able to build the nuclear reactor and replace it if it blows. I'm assuming this will work as it's already a game mechanic.

I'm disappointed at the release date. That's another 3.5 months away and the updates for 0.14 have been really slow and coming so I assumed more and more people were already working on 0.15 changes. Plus that's just the ETA, given the history of Factorio, things often take longer. Then add to that more delays for you guys testing it and fixing it before initial release. Don't take this as negative criticism. I'm really exited for 0.15 and like the direction you guys are heading in with this particular change but it would be great to have it sooner, like for the holidays (with a subset of the features maybe).

I HAVE AN IMPORTANT REQUEST. PLEASE GIVE SOME LOVE FOR THE BITERS IN 0.15. PLEASE ADD MORE VARIETIES OF BITERS AND MORE VARIED BEHAVIOURS/AI AND ADD MORE TURRETS AND WEAPONS.

The whole combat of the game has been neglected for a really really long time. We need more fun weapons and cool new enemies to fight with them. What about laser rifles, going over biter, weapon, vehicle and turret balance? But most of all MAKE BITERS MORE VARIED, INTERESTING, AND CHALLENGING AND LET THE DIFFICULTY BE CONFIGURABLE.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by golfmiketango » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:46 pm

MrGrim wrote:Nuclear power in Factorio should be barely held together by spit and gum. :D
This. Factorio does a great job of sorting gameplay dynamics quite neatly into two piles: things that are simulated with a fairly high degree of realism and things that the game decided not to simulate with any degree of realism in order to make gameplay fun. So long as the various aspects of nuclear power keep with this tradition I think it's probably fine.

As for what people are saying about nuclear power and public opinion, again, factorio has a well established aesthetic for addressing politically charged thematic elements. For example, issues such as environmental destruction, habitat destruction for the natives, and so on. These are not ignored, but presented in a morally ambiguous and somewhat darkly ironic way, tending to put Hero in a position where he is forced to at least partially embrace the dark-side, but faces negative consequences for doing so carelessly. It sounds like this will be no exception, and if certain popular myths of the dangers of nuclear power are modeled as real in-game phenomena, I'm inclined to think that's OK, as factorio is (I hope) not intended to serve as a PSA.

One other thought: perhaps the proposed change to the logistics of boilers would provide a meaningful use for long-handed burner-inserters.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by GoldenPorkchop80 » Tue Nov 15, 2016 12:16 am

razorscarface wrote: Unless there will be mutated bugs that are immune to radiation and, for added fun, glow in the dark.
But that would completely defeat the point of nuclear weapons. It's an equalizer when the odds are REALLY stacked against you, not a Discharge Defense! :lol:
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by SagaciousZed » Tue Nov 15, 2016 12:23 am

It occurred to me,depending on how difficult and time consuming it is to get the nuclear fuel, when the reactor overheats and melts down, the reactor destroying all fuel currently loaded could be a sufficient penalty for the player.

As a player I would have to balance the keeping a well fuel reactor vs a minimally fueled reactor. Lots of fuel is fewer refueling cycles and more stable power but greater risk of losing all the fuel.

It might also be a good incentive to learn to control the reactor more precisely through the use of circuits, if you don't want to keep a reactor minimally fueled and constantly bouncing between refueling cycles.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Ranakastrasz » Tue Nov 15, 2016 3:25 am

I don't think heat pipes make sense. Having the reactor, or attachments act like a massive, tank scale boiler instead seems more reasonable.
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Andrzejef » Tue Nov 15, 2016 7:53 am

GoldenPorkchop80 wrote:
razorscarface wrote: Unless there will be mutated bugs that are immune to radiation and, for added fun, glow in the dark.
But that would completely defeat the point of nuclear weapons. It's an equalizer when the odds are REALLY stacked against you, not a Discharge Defense! :lol:
Actually, some non-hostile glow-bugs eye-candy in "radiated" area is something I dig :)
Also, we can always switch to glow-biters, as a variants spawned in such areas (but are not any "better" than their not-glow counterparts, kind of like "nature will find a way" trope). Both are fine by me.
Plus - as a mean of making biters more varied and interesting - we could have some tunnelers, past some evolution point.
But first - we need nuke. (because weaponizing overloaded reactor is a no-no for me) :)
That, or any other weapon of mass destruction (because it's sad to see rocket silo gathering dust, being more or less useless).

Tho now that I think of it, there could be something allowing us to remotely rig the reactor as a last line of defense, should things get really awry. :twisted:
Still, I am rather a fan of emission-based ideas, not explosion ones, with phoenixian's being my favourite.
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Grimakar » Tue Nov 15, 2016 9:32 am

Maybe the "popular" nuclear bomb could destroy even the ore fields etc.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Enkal » Tue Nov 15, 2016 9:43 am

MrGrim wrote:For everyone bringing up the impossibility of explosions please see:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... wer-plant/

Significant destructive consequences for mismanaging power generation would be a welcome addition, imo. If some players want to reload rather than take on the challenge of dealing with the aftermath of such an event then so be it. Their choice.
Of course it is not impossible but hydrogen explosions are easily preventable and most nuclear power plants do have the safety valves to ventilate hydrogen should a meltdown occur. Also, the Fukushima meltdowns were due to a large tsunami from a magnitude 9.0 earthquake, are you suggesting that the devs implement earth quakes and tsunamis in the game? ;) A nice tsunami would wipe out 95 % of your factory so you would have to start over.

This game is supposed to be sci-fi, lets not make technology from the 50-ies the norm (no safety valves in nuclear power plants). Even today nuclear power plants are designed to be walk away safe. In a future scenario like in Factorio a nuclear power plant will be so safe that you would have them in every city block or even in your car.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Andrzejef » Tue Nov 15, 2016 1:36 pm

Enkal wrote:
MrGrim wrote:(...) or even in your car.
No way - I'll have my pretty Mantis Walker. Cars, phah! :P
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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by razorscarface » Tue Nov 15, 2016 2:11 pm

Andrzejef wrote:
GoldenPorkchop80 wrote:
razorscarface wrote: Unless there will be mutated bugs that are immune to radiation and, for added fun, glow in the dark.
But that would completely defeat the point of nuclear weapons. It's an equalizer when the odds are REALLY stacked against you, not a Discharge Defense! :lol:
Actually, some non-hostile glow-bugs eye-candy in "radiated" area is something I dig :)
Catch one of these non-hostile glow-bugs and put it in a jar for light without electricity. Maybe cost a fish every once in a while... :lol: Almost as good as using a fire fly.

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Re: Friday Facts #164 - Nuclear power

Post by Anson » Tue Nov 15, 2016 2:33 pm

saturn7 wrote:Heat transfer by train. Awesome!
Some wrong signals, and the whole factory explodes oO
i was immediately reminded on some REALLIFE videos i once saw: one factory produces iron from iron ore and the liquid iron then is transported up to a few hundred kilometers to the factory that uses the iron.
this would combine everything in one big setup: energy production, smelting, transport of liquid metals (and heat :-), etc

I have no idea of how much heat is produced in power plants and how much heat can be stored in liquid iron, but it doesn't need to be too realistic in a game anyway, and all those elements could be combined to make some interesting setups :-)

i couldn't find the old documetary that i remembered, but a quick look at youtube showed some of these train transports:
Roheisenzug (raw iron train),Torpedopfannen emptying such a wagon, dumping slag, dumping copper slag

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