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intermittent Heat Exchange in Liquid Oxygen Setup


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I've been playing hundreds of hours and thought I had a pretty good handle on heat exchange. I've also read and believe I understand the thermal conductivity wiki article and others like it, though it's possible this is an edge case that I'm just not seeing.

Attached are screenshots of the setup; both chambers have this behavior, but let's just stick with the liquid O2 on the right. The insulated tiles separating the chambers from each other and the thermo aquatuner chamber is ceramic, and the outer walls of the chambers are mafic rock. The issue is I'm waiting for a sizable pool of liquid O2 to form and it's taking longer than it should I believe. The behavior I'm observing is every once in a while the pool will recede and allow the oxygen gas to make contact with the floor of the chamber. When this happens, a tremendous heat exchange takes place with the insulated tile dropping several degrees F a second. At some point the liquid will reform and the heat exchange will stop, and sometime it switches back and forth rapidly during this exchange. One of the screenshots below shows a 5Kg oxygen cell doing this. So far this has happened with every floor tile and now the sides including the ceramic tile separating the O2 from the H2, though the transfer is slower as expected when compared to the mafic rock. I imagine this will stabilize once all of the tiles are close to the condensation point of O2, but why is this happening? Does everyone's setups do this, or is there something wrong with this particular setup? I feel I may have crossed into a special case or bug here.

I've tried this setup with gold metal tiles on the outside (we're in space for the moment, so it shouldn't matter). This helps the process along since I don't need to wait for each tile to get closer to the condensation point of O2, but the same thing is happening with the insulated tile separating the chambers, even if it is an insulated tile made of insulation. What mechanic specifically have I stumbled into here, and how do I fix it?

I expected a slow heat exchange between these very cold chambers and their tiles, but I don't understand this sudden burst that happens one tile at a time. Along those lines, why aren't any other O2 gas tiles exchanging with the insulated walls? Why is it this one 5Kg O2 gas tile (in this example) and only intermittently? In a way I'm waiting for every tile the liquid O2 will touch to reach a temperature close to the condensation point before I can move forward. This is taking forever.

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The LOH and LOX are flaking (aka partial melting/ partial evaporation). It allows 5kg of a liquid to phase up if its next to a hot solid.  Unfortunately it also completely ignores thermal conductivity. So it will continue to happen until the walls have cooled to LOX temperatures.

The consensus seems to be to use gold tiles surrounded by vacuum to avoid it. ( they'll cool down fast and stop flaking the liquids). You'll probably need to separate they two tanks so the no longer share a wall.

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1 hour ago, ghkbrew said:

The LOH and LOX are flaking (aka partial melting/ partial evaporation). It allows 5kg of a liquid to phase up if its next to a hot solid.  Unfortunately it also completely ignores thermal conductivity. So it will continue to happen until the walls have cooled to LOX temperatures.

The consensus seems to be to use gold tiles surrounded by vacuum to avoid it. ( they'll cool down fast and stop flaking the liquids). You'll probably need to separate they two tanks so the no longer share a wall.

Appreciate this, thanks. Your use of the term "flaking" for this behavior allowed me to find a number of other references to this behavior, including this main article. I figured this voodoo was some kind of bug or mechanic, but didn't know what to call it for search purposes.

Agree with your suggested approach and it sounds like I was mostly there. I also figured gold metal tiles would cool quickly and make this whole perceived "equilibrium process" go a lot faster. I've already made sure rocket exhaust gases won't reach this, so I'll separate the chambers and just leave this in the vacuum of space.

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1 hour ago, _alphaBeta_ said:

including this main article.

I added "pre-patch" to the title, and put a link to the discussion thread on the updated mechanic.  Someday I may get around to making a nice new post, or someone will put the info into the wiki.  It seems like the devs have passed their wand over this mechanic, and now solidified how it "should" work in the game. Putting in the wiki might be a great move.  Anyone want to take on that challenge?

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2 hours ago, ghkbrew said:

The LOH and LOX are flaking (aka partial melting/ partial evaporation). It allows 5kg of a liquid to phase up if its next to a hot solid.  Unfortunately it also completely ignores thermal conductivity. So it will continue to happen until the walls have cooled to LOX temperatures.

@mathmanican Back to the day when I told you that the flaking algorithm should be TC relative somewhat. And when I read stuff like this it does pop-out once again.

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1 minute ago, OxCD said:

should be TC relative somewhat.

It's a common suggestion that many have given.  The devs decided to NOT make it TC relative.  Whether or not that is a good thing is subjective.  For now, the mechanic precisely ignores TC, and as such allows abysallite flaking.  If we add TC to the equation, then I bet abysallite flaking will disappear.  I'm guessing the choice to use the child SHC for partial melting (instead of the parent SHC which they used for partial evaporation first) was deliberate to allow abysallite flaking to continue. This makes me doubt that they will add TC to the equation ever. But who knows.  

What would probably help new players at this point is making sure the wiki gets updated, and appropriate links are placed on the TC page and other heat transfer pages in the wiki.

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21 hours ago, mathmanican said:

It's a common suggestion that many have given.  The devs decided to NOT make it TC relative.  Whether or not that is a good thing is subjective.  For now, the mechanic precisely ignores TC, and as such allows abysallite flaking.  If we add TC to the equation, then I bet abysallite flaking will disappear.  I'm guessing the choice to use the child SHC for partial melting (instead of the parent SHC which they used for partial evaporation first) was deliberate to allow abysallite flaking to continue. This makes me doubt that they will add TC to the equation ever. But who knows.  

What would probably help new players at this point is making sure the wiki gets updated, and appropriate links are placed on the TC page and other heat transfer pages in the wiki.

My suspicion is they want to leave it in until they've reworked how tungsten is acquired. Getting tungsten is right now one of the more uncertain things in the game, and highly tied in with space, which the DLC is about to change.
I would also note that at present, this issue the thread is about is somewhat "rare" to encounter because most players never get around to making liquid oxygen to begin with, and it might become more common once space-related gameplay has been revamped a bit and the learning curve is smoother.

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