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Samson.ONI    14

UPDATE: This is the WIP version, see later response for the refined version.

Don't mind the sloppy build, I'm experimenting in survival like a real dupe. (:

Concept
The desalinator uses power and generates heat; I don't like either of those things and am running out of challenges so I'm trying to over-engineer my own process for desalination that (hopefully) does the opposite. I've made decent progress on it, but it's not as effective as I would like it to be and wanted to see if anyone was interested in helping develop the concept further

How it works
95.6° C Salt water is sourced from a salt water geyser and injected into a steam chamber at a rate of 2kg/s whenever the chamber temperature exceeds 205° C to regulate the temperature and pressure. The steam turbine will kick on for 60s whenever both the steam chamber's pressure exceeds 20kg and temperature exceeds 199° C. The temperature and pressure buffers are there to reduce fluctuations that would interfere the efficiency of the turbine's power generation.

The heat necessary to vaporize the salt water into salt and steam is being generated by an aqua-tuner which is in turn regulating a pH2O cooling loop for an electrolyzer setup, hydrogen generators, batteries, transformers, as well as a polymer press and an oil refinery that I threw in because nothing was generating enough heat. (And it's still not enough heat.) The hydrogen generators keep the process rolling when either the steam chamber's pressure or temperature drops below optimal ranges.

The turbine is also exclusively cooled by hydrogen from the electrolyzers, which is burned immediately afterward, and there is also an auto-sweeper that runs for 12 seconds per cycle to export the salt.

As for the problems
Even with the added polymer press and oil refinery, this setup doesn't generate much heat so the aqua-tuner gets disabled to prevent it from freezing the pipes. This cuts into salt production, because the aqua-tuner is the sole source of heat necessary for processing the salt water. Since the aqua-tuner isn't producing heat all the time, the turbine also isn't producing fresh water to fuel the electrolyzer setup. The net result is that the combined steam and hydrogen power derived strictly from the turbine's output is insufficient to power the whole operation. The reason this build works is because there is a sensor that detects when there is no water coming from the turbine and injects water into the electrolyzer setup from an external source. This allows the electrolyzers to continue producing hydrogen for the generators to burn.

Now, I have plenty of water to spare and I'm sure I can find ways to generate more heat, but that's not my ideal solution. I want this design to be a self-sustained reaction, or at least closer to one, while maximizing the amount of salt water processed per cycle. Curious if anyone has any ideas?

wrekt.png

Edited by Samson.ONI

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nakomaru    1,342

Your turbine is deleting a lot of heat per kg of water processed. Run the steam room colder. You may need to have multiple turbines to keep such a low temperature.

By the way, the liquid vent is happy to output in up to 1000kg of steam, so if you want thermal stability just use more steam.

You can cool your electrolyzer water before sending it through if you need to feed more heat into your tuner. This won't be as efficient as a tricked tepidizer though.

Edited by nakomaru

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Samson.ONI    14
12 hours ago, nakomaru said:

Your turbine is deleting a lot of heat per kg of water processed. Run the steam room colder. You may need to have multiple turbines to keep such a low temperature.

By the way, the liquid vent is happy to output in up to 1000kg of steam, so if you want thermal stability just use more steam.

You can cool your electrolyzer water before sending it through if you need to feed more heat into your tuner. This won't be as efficient as a tricked tepidizer though.

Pretty clever, I'm running the steam room colder like you said and very quickly began producing too much water for the electrolyzers to handle. (Which is really good for a number of reasons.) I no longer have to inject water from external sources, and am now processing 3kg/s of salt water which is getting closer to the intake of an actual desalinator. The process is now producing more energy and cooling that it is using. I was also afraid of adding too much salt water at once because I thought it would cool the steam off too much, but you were right the extra steam is really padding out the thermal stability.

Cooling the water going into the electrolyzers would be another source of heat, but it does seem like a terribly wasteful thing to spend cooling utility on. Tell me more about these tricked tepidizers?

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Samson.ONI    14
3 minutes ago, chemie said:

use aqua to cool water for berries to help increase uptime

I do any more cooling and this asteroid is going to turn into a block of ice lol, I need something that generates a lot of heat. I was thinking about running domesticated sleet wheat though so we're in the same direction. The biggest issue at this point is adding more salt water means needing more heat to keep the process rolling. At the moment, that heat is coming from the aqua-tuner and a tepidizer that has been tricked into running over its default shutoff temp which is what I think @nakomaru was referring to.

The electrolyzers are overflowing and I need more power so at this point the best thing to do would probably be setting up more electrolyzers for more hydrogen production since currently most of the turbine's output is just being dumped into an infinite storage. I'm probably going to start on that now, but the footprint for this build which was originally just for extracting salt is starting to get huge. Lots of hydrogen, fresh water, cold oxygen, cooling capacity, and salt though. A second electrolyzer setup will give the tuner something else to cool and produce more surplus power.

wurp.png

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DRAKCORE    2

I do a similar setup by dumping salt water into my steam room, only when x pressure is reached when steam is running out or temperature exceed to have a cool down effect. The steam room usually has 3 metal refineries fed into it with a single aquatuner to cool down the base. Auto sweeper to transport the salt out and water from the steam room / steam turbines is prioritized to be used first using a liquid bridge before other water sources.

Edited by DRAKCORE
*salt water
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Samson.ONI    14
4 minutes ago, DRAKCORE said:

I do a similar setup by dumping salt water into my steam room, only when x pressure is reached when steam is running out or temperature exceed to have a cool down effect. The steam room usually has 3 metal refineries fed into it with a single aquatuner to cool down the base. Auto sweeper to transport the salt out and water from the steam room / steam turbines is prioritized to be used first using a liquid bridge before other water sources.

That sounds like a pretty optimal way to make use of a salt water geyser with a minimal design footprint. Clever, but I always have highs and lows with metal production as needed when I'm expanding so I don't know if that would work for me since my refineries have a lot of down time. Definitely get a lot of efficient heat out of those refineries though.

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DRAKCORE    2

Could also just pipe the salt water through cool steam vents to give a slight cooling affect so the steam keeps condensing, just 1L or less since they will burst the pipes when they exceed their vaporization temp, then once they are slightly higher in temp, just dump the salt water which will flash into water and salt. If you use the above steam room and worried about not getting the salt warm enough without using metal refineries just make sure your cooling loop and aquatuner pumps out enough heat.

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Samson.ONI    14
14 minutes ago, DRAKCORE said:

Could also just pipe the salt water through cool steam vents to give a slight cooling affect so the steam keeps condensing, just 1L or less since they will burst the pipes when they exceed their vaporization temp, then once they are slightly higher in temp, just dump the salt water which will flash into water and salt. If you use the above steam room and worried about not getting the salt warm enough without using metal refineries just make sure your cooling loop and aquatuner pumps out enough heat.

There's a lot better ways of doing this, I actually have two hot steam vents that I could be using to blast the salt out of the water but my idea was to make a self-contained system that doesn't depend on external energy/heat sources. Making steady progress though, the second electrolyzer setup is helping keep up with the power demand for superheating larger amounts of salt water. But I am starting to see what @nakomaru meant about the additional steam turbines.

I'm using a liquid vent that's being tricked into overpressurizing with some petroleum, so the steam pressure is just increasing indefinitely. I could be generating more power and more fresh water with an extra steam turbine but I would have to rebuild a good half of the infrastructure here so I think I'm going to move my testing to a debug/sandbox world.

wurp.png

Edited by Samson.ONI
Here's the last look at the desalinator build before I move the testing to a debug world
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DRAKCORE    2

If you have two hot steam vents, you can distribute the heat exchange with the cooler ones across the map, so no need to dump more watts into forcing them cooler. That is what I like about the maps, you never know what you are going to be get dealt with vents/geysers/volcano's, making you adapt differently each time. I try to minimize energy usage, currently the entire base is running off just the extra energy produced by the oxygen system. But I will move into the volcano and then sour gas gens.

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biopon    192
16 hours ago, Samson.ONI said:

Now, I have plenty of water to spare and I'm sure I can find ways to generate more heat, but that's not my ideal solution.

Crack open a volcano?

What you're trying to do works. You just need heat. That's pretty easy to come by... The desalinator at 480w/5kg/s is a blatant ripoff, you can certainly do better with turbines.

I wouldn't overthink the automation, by the way. It gets pretty easy if your turbines are expected to be always up.

 

 

 

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Samson.ONI    14
1 minute ago, biopon said:

Crack open a volcano?

What you're trying to do works. You just need heat. That's pretty easy to come by... The desalinator at 480w/5kg/s is a blatant ripoff, you can certainly do better with turbines.

I wouldn't overthink the automation, by the way. It gets pretty easy if your turbines are expected to be always up.

 

 

 

Like I said; I know there are much better ways to do this, I'm just trying to make a self-contained system for the sake of the technical challenge because I'm running out of things to do. I could just toss the salt water at my hot steam vents, but I want to the process to be self-sustaining with no dependence on external input from other heat/energy sources.

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Samson.ONI    14

Well, here we are in it's final form (Or at least as far as I will be taking it.) Big thanks to @nakomaru for their advice on running the chamber cooler, using multiple turbines and a tepedizer; that advice really took the development a lot further.

So, let's take a look at how it's running. We're currently processing twice as much salt water as a desalinator, while also producing an enormous amount of 3° C Oxygen to air condition the entire base with. There is some surplus hydrogen and fresh water, but not a significant amount per second. There is also a surplus of steam, but that isn't an issue since I'm using an overpressurized liquid vent. This does however mean that I could be producing more energy and fresh water per second by integrating a third steam turbine, but hell if I'm rebuilding this a second time.

Sure beats the desalinator, but the amount space it takes up wouldn't be worthwhile for most players. All in all I'm pretty happy with the build and am using a setup like this in my current survival game but given the amount of infrastructure necessary I probably won't use this again in the future. Just toss your salt water at some metal refineries or a volcano or something.

- Happy over-engineering :)

Boy, I really did all this because I wanted my dupes to have table salt, but didn't want to use a desalinator or external heat sources. Well I did it.

derp.png

Edited by Samson.ONI
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nakomaru    1,342

Nice. :) Glad you achieved what you were trying to do.

Yes that's what I meant by a tricked tepidizer. You can also trick electrolyzers to auto sort and work at any pressure with full uptime. It's been a subject again in a few recent threads.

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