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Steam Turbine needs balance and fix


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Current problems from Steam Turbine:

  1. It's very hard for players figure out how to setup it correctly.
    1. Where is the input from this machine?
    2. ~after a while~ There is no input, maybe it interacts directly with the envoriment.
    3. Why this machine needs to pump steam from the envoriment while all other machines has a gas input?
    4. I need to setup a room for it. How do I do it?
    5. Why is not pumping? How much heat does it needs? Ahn, (it's not pressurized or there is not enough heat), I didnt knew about that. My design failed.
    6. It's not pressurized, how im going to handle its steam output? There is a limite that envoriment can handle.
    7. Is it not supposed to be running constantly? Do I have to store energy through steam? Can I run it canstantly, how?
    8. Can I pump the steam to somewhere else? No, not power eficient.
    9. How to run this without waste more power than its provides?
    10. How the **** i'm going to know setup this without watching an youtube video?
  2. There is nothing in the game that can handle the steam output without consuming more power than its produces.
    1. Gas Pump (360w) consumes too much power to serve as a depressurization solution. Using gas pump for this propose would consume more power than the system produce, since we would need a lot of them.
    2. Condensating water was a solution that I found, but like others, it's not 100% exploit free. (input block exploit)unknown.png
    3. Low pressure zone is another way to do it, not 100% exploit free.
      image.png.9e60697224f1ce9a472c58eb4f7c50a9.png

Suggestions

  1. Rebalacing steam turbine output and Gas Pump power consumption.
    1. Liquid pump and Gas Pump consumes the same amount of power, but liquid pump can move 10kg of mater while gas pump only 1kg. This does not feel fair, decreasing the power consumption of the gas pump could help steam turbine actual design to be viable without the use of exploits. Also makes it easier for a new player figure out how to use it: "oh, I just need to pump out steam from the room".
    2. Reducing steam output could help gas pump being viable too.
  2. Give equivalent power from the steam input.
    1. Steam turbine input can be blocked but it keeps working giving the same amount of power. Steam turbine is a power monster that recharge batteries almost instantly, controlling steam input with doors could help on that, since steam turbine gives equivalent power to its input. Also helps with pressurization, giving time to the pump handle it without being negative power eficient.
  3. Make the steam turbine delete 116 celsius degree of heat. (Alternative)
    1. The output steam would be around 110 celsius. The remaining 10 degrees celsius from the steam would be very cheap and would allow the water to be pumped back into the system.
    2. Increase power output to 3000w since it's removing a lot more heat from the envoriment.
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The turbine isn’t meant to be power positive, for the same reason they changed the natural gas generator and fertilizer synthesizer.

Condensing the turbine output to water and pumping at 10kg/s does not require use of any exploits and is perfectly fair. This is how turbines are used in the real world.

i do not like the suggestions made by the OP, aside from maybe the scaling power production based on open ports. But based on a review of the code, blocking the input ports is not intended and doing so is an exploit.

I do not think they need to improve the turbine, just remove the bugs.

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1 hour ago, yoakenashi said:

The turbine isn’t meant to be power positive, for the same reason they changed the natural gas generator and fertilizer synthesizer.

Yes it is, if it were not, it would not be categorized on the power tab but rather on the Utility tab. Steam Turbine is an energy generator and in its description itself informs.

It was designed to convert magma heat into usable power, but it's almost impossible to do it in a positive power way without exploits. It's broken and force us to go around using exploits.

image.png.7ab5965f0f74be25887af0e45f771fd8.png

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28 minutes ago, Mooka said:

It was designed to convert magma heat into usable power, but it's almost impossible to do it in a positive power way without exploits. It's broken and force us to go around using exploits.

Just dump steam in open space. Wasting water? but other generators also consume some resources, you getting heat from magma for free, if you could condense water for free it would be completely free power and other generators would not be needed.

Try to use solar panels and you will write similar post.

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Solar panels can be used without exploits in a net power generating way, so  I don't know what you are talking about there.

 

The main problem with the steam turbine is that it conducts heat too well, which means that the exhaust is much hotter then it should be.

 

steam turbine is only free energy as long as you have an infinite heat source.

 

I think the way to balance the turbine is to have it consume 2 kg/s steam, period. It should be built from ceramic  so that the exhaust comes out in reasonable temperatures, and that it should emit exhaust at the same output as the cool steam vent (110) because players already knows how to deal with that. It will also make each watt cost a lot more DTU and make heating with aquatuner infeasible while making condensation based designs possible.

 

To deal with the other exploits, it should require that the steam that it is sucking in is actually 500K and base the pressure on the max pressure on top to defeat gas conflict builds.

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2 hours ago, Mooka said:

 

Yes it is, if it were not, it would not be categorized on the power tab but rather on the Utility tab. Steam Turbine is an energy generator and in its description itself informs.

It was designed to convert magma heat into usable power, but it's almost impossible to do it in a positive power way without exploits. It's broken and force us to go around using exploits.

 

 

1 hour ago, D.L.S. said:

other generators also consume some resources

This is what I meant. The turbine generates power, which is why it is on the power tab. The petroleum generator is also on the power tab, but the loop of converting the byproducts of CO2 and polluted water to produce petroleum again is not power positive. Similarly, taking the resulting cool steam and getting it to be a valid input again should not be power positive.

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I really hate the steam turbine in the game, caz it requires too much and it actually a net waste of power if you are doing it totally by machines (not heating up using magma and volcanos and not cooling down using ATEN and (lots of) wheezworts)

 

And something nonsense inside the game.

You can propel a huge rocket without very hot steam, however you have to use d*mn lots hotter steam to push the steam turbine.

DOES IT EVEN MAKE SENSE?

Even I can’t find a suitable setup for steam power. The steam turbine is strange.

So if you can have nuclear power (either nuclear fissioning or fusioning) it’s okay for the heating part without expensive aquatuner heaters or volcanos. For the steam re-heating with mininum energy loss part it is the real trouble...

(XωX) R.I.P.

And the pressure problem, I have to dig a huge room above turbine to reduce pressure rise as much as possible; while I have to install many pumps for draining cold steam.

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17 hours ago, lee1026 said:

Solar panels can be used without exploits in a net power generating way, so  I don't know what you are talking about there.

 

steam turbine is only free energy as long as you have an infinite heat source.

Solar panels require shielding from meteorites(bunker doors and automation to open close them), have non constant power output, no electricity at night, and occupy a lot of space as for its power output. The only advantage that we can stack them on top of each other, but if we couldn't they won't be viable. And i meant that in game steam turbine and solar panels not as simple setup as some coal generator.

It's challenging to cool down all magma below 226C, you will run out of water first, so even heat are finite, you need a lot of efforts to consume it all.

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Solar panels will pay for bunker door power very easily, because the sun shrines a lot more frequently then you need to run bunker doors, and each panel produces more then the bunker doors take.

 

Whether solar panels are worthwhile is a good discussion to have, but they are certainly power positive.

 

As for cooling all the magma down,  if you are naive about it, it really won't take that long - a turbine is 2kg/s, and each kg of steam you throw down there is going to get heated up to the temperature of the magma before the turbine touches it. 100 cycles for a large pool, tops. If you carefully ration out the heat, it is going to last forever, but if you play carefully and optimally, lots of power sources last forever.

(Rough math for naive usage of the steam turbine is that each tile of magma will last one cycle)

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All I need is

1、Fix the bug

  • do not take non-steam substance into account when checking temperature and pressure.

2、When conditions are met, the turbine should

  • either generate 2kW power and take 2kg/s steam, not 2kg/s per block of steam beneath the turbine.
  • or take 0.4kg/s steam and generate 400W for each tile of steam beneath the turbine which have sufficient temperature and pressure.

3、Take away a constant amount of temperature from the steam, not output steam at a constant temperature. This allows the steam turbine to be chained.

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It could be great if (in addition to all bugs to solved) the steam turbine works the same as solar panel (should) do, with an amount of power produced according to the difference of pression between the input and output.

 

Also agree with @DreamApart : power production should be definitly linked with the amount of inputs used.

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33 minutes ago, nakomaru said:

My changes: 2kW per unblocked port (the input heat requirement is enormous)

This means that even an heavy conductive wire could not support a fully functionnal turbine. :-/

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I  wonder how the game makers intended for the steam turbine to be used. For most of the suggestions, you can get a perpetual motion machine going with pwater, aquatuner, and liquid tepedizer with no exploits.

 

That isn't a problem in and of itself - it is game where SPOMs are possible, so we said goodbye to the concept of 1st and 2nd law a long time ago. With that said, I get the feeling that the game wants to remove perpetual motion machines for the most part. 

 

The thing that makes an unexploited steam engine unfeasible isn't how much heat it used, but how hard it is to condense the steam down, so make it output cooler steam. Make it send out 110 degree steam would get rid of the perpetual motion machine problem while making condensation designs feasible.

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I think need to start from removing constant output temperature of steam turbine. Now it have 425 kelvin fixed output temperature - this is shame, need something like input_temperature - 100 kelvin to begin with, and then test how it will work, this fix suppose to allow make stack of steam turbines and feed them with steam at ~1000C.

Then, if not enough - do something with its heat conductivity, so turbine body wont conduct heat through itself so well.

You cant reduce steam consumption too much because it will be possible perpetual mobile mode.

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Stacking them works fine today, because conducting heat from one chamber from the next is easy enough.

 

Fixed temp outputs make sense as a way of forcing players to play better around heat for perfect efficiency, which is a nice piece of emergent gameplay.

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1 hour ago, lee1026 said:

Not the turbine's fault that the tepidizer has 500000% efficiency.

 

1 hour ago, lee1026 said:

I suppose you can nerf the tepidizer.

I thought the tepidizer only heated to 85.C, how is that useful for the turbine?

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Yep, you generate heat with tepidizer and then move the heat with the aquatuner. Without the tepidizer, the perpetual motion machine stops because you will run out of heat to heat the coolant back up with the aquatuner... eventually. Bugging out the tepidizer is an exploit, and that should be fixed via fixing the tepidizer.

 

(Actually not that long, based on my own experience with aquatuner based heater designs - I got pools of liquid oxygen in an open room pretty quickly and the entire oil biome frozen over in about 100 cycles)

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Things I don’t think the power turbine needs:

A net surplus of energy if you’re using machinery - including Aquatuners - to generate the heat. It should only be power-positive if you’re using a naturally hot source like magma, regolith, or rocket exhaust. I’ve used a simple heat exchange loop to gain energy from both regolith and rocket exhaust.

Feasible cycling using condensation. It’s fine if you have to move 152 C steam back to the input to get energy.

More realistic output temperature. Sure, the fixed temperature is a bit of a cheat, but ONI has other intentional fixed temperatures like the sieve output.

In my view, the main issues are the shear volume of steam it moves, and how prohibitively expensive it is to move that without exploits, and the irrelevance of the number of ports you’re using to power generation.

It’s hard to understand why the flow rate is so high. 75 degrees * 2kg/s * 4 DTU/g/k = 600,000 watts. The turbine’s all of 0.3% thermally efficient. That’s more than a little ridiculous.

Since, as it stands, the heat conversion is absolutely vital to the end game, and there’s no real substitute for using steam turbines to eliminate heat, I’d personally change it so the flow was 400 g/s per port, which retains the 600k DTU heat removal we rely on, but makes the number of ports open matter. I’d set power production to 400 watts per open port.

Personally I’ve been using 1 open port always, because that requires 4 gas pumps to match the 2kg/s output rate. 1 kw to run 4 gas pumps means I’m gaining at most 1kw if the heat is from a natural source.

A door pump solves the flow problem, and costs less energy - but I’m unclear whether the door pump should be considered legal. If it’s an intentional effect according to the devs (and I’d like an answer on that one), the flow rate isn’t a huge problem, though the issue of number of ports open remains.

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25 minutes ago, nakomaru said:

Aquatuners generate zero heat.

Doors used to delete gas and they were changed to move gas to the sides. This could only be intentional and is a long standing part of the basic physics. If it is considered too powerful, I think requiring power for mechanized airlock automation could solve that.

Gas conflict is a natural result of one element per tile. Like mechanical filters and water locks, I can't see this as an exploit either.

I'm aware that aquatuners don't generate heat, they just move it. I should have phrased that better.

I think it's clear that the intent is that moving heat with aquatuners is supposed to be expensive in energy, expensive enough that you can't then turn around and use the moved heat to generate a net surplus of electricity.

I'm fine with that. I think it makes the difference between high-temperature sources and the diffuse, low temperature heat that pervades a colony more interesting. I cool several sections of my colony with heat exchanger / aquatuner / steam turbine setups, and it feels correct that there's a slight net cost (160 watts) in energy to do so.

--

As for doors, I'm uncomfortable with it because it appears to be an unintentional side effect of fixing another problem. It's a result of certain simplifications of the game model, such as doors physically occupying the entire volume of their tiles, and the inability of the game to deal with more than 1 element (gas or liquid) per tile.

The gas conflict thing results in the matter transmuter exploit, which can't be intentional. It also gives some pretty weird liquid behavior. Water tends to behave like a gel, and what appears to be a huge volume of liquid can actually be very small volumes stacked. It's common to see water / polluted water / crude oil stacks in the oil biome, and such a stack occupies three full tiles even if the volumes are 10kg / 10kg / 700kg.

Though in the end, I can live with the really weird looking water effects. Liquid physics in ONI is still far superior to liquid behavior in Terraria, Dwarf Fortress, or Minecraft.

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I'm not primarily concerned with what's "realistic." I'm more concerned with balance, and whether certain behaviors of the game yield other parts irrelevant. My concern with door pumps isn't so much whether they're realistic or not, it's how much it hurts the importance of gas pumps. Particularly thermium gas pumps, since doors don't overheat at 75 C.

In the same vein, any adjustments to the steam turbine need to take care not to make the turbine 10x more effective as a power source as oil. We've touched on the low DTU to joule conversion rate, but given how ridiculously easy it is to obtain large amounts of regolith at 300 C, if the conversion rate were, say, 0.5 DTU to a joule the turbine would produce 300kW, and a single turbine would eliminate the need for any other power sources.

 

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