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Regolith melt direction quest.


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Hi!

I'm currently putting together the finishing touches on a regolith melter and managed to get the concept of a heat exchanger that can be easily mirrored down ... But then, a not so blurry memory came to haunt.

And I hope that this question is simple: Should the magma "blade" point left or right?

Spoiler

(it's magma tongue, really, but I guess we have a hard time pronouncing that)

A very simplified depiction of the direction of the regolith rail; magma will fall off the edge either from a right to left (top) or left to right flow (bottom)

2145185482_directionsheatexchange.png.ca0b7f9370a7cfaa995890dadc4d904e.png

 

Here's the blast from the past that made me wonder if the choice will have a quantifiable impact on the choice of direction:

 

Thanks!.

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The bug you pointed to affects stair designs (the bug is still there so stair designs should flow right to left to avoid bug) and deals with heat transfer. Is the question about heat transfer or fluid flow? Are you trying to control the blade, or do want to not lose extra heat. 

One option is build both and then share what you find for a good discussion.

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55 minutes ago, mathmanican said:

affects stair designs

So in this case flat is justice. I feared a heat loss when liquids flow regularly (I know, silly me...). Now I would only dare suspect a possible heat loss when dripping the magma from the edge when creating a bead but that's all and I feel you've dispelled such fears.

55 minutes ago, mathmanican said:

Are you trying to control the blade, or do want to not lose extra heat. 

The way I built it happened to land upon a good set & forget condition, no waiting for the whole build to finish its heating to re-visit and adjust.

I'd seen and adapted several concepts from Tony Advanced, Francis John, waterfalls/beads and their application in petroleum boilers and last but not least Nakomaru's ceramifier.

No controlling the blade beyond the ledge, liquid thermo sensor is set to 1455ºC. The contraption can start with a single eruption and another version did make it through a minor volcano dormancy period + my several adjustments.
 

This is what I came up with.

GIGO Data:

  • Regolith comes in at 275ºC. Kind of simulating the downpour from the skies.
  • Igneous rock leaves at about 1185ºC.
  • Fuel consumption is around 20kg per several cycles after the initial spin-up (take it with a grain of salt, I still have to measure more objectively. It's definitely on the low side though.)

 

1586076445_TheYarmv1-01.thumb.png.1402421ba573c03d0cd659fae376f2d8.png

A close up on the final stage:

759018454_TheYarmv1-01heater.png.5a026564ed25e7aa3e07b624ed19c10b.png

Mirror that tank assembly and we get something like this, considering a thermo sensor for an out of fuel scenario...:

1727815883_TheYarmv1-01heatermirror.png.969cc4b659503d1024611e9949d35cb6.png

 

 

 

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Any heat loss due to the bug will occur at the far right where the final bit is. If things bead you will lose a bit of heat. It's a small percentage that becomes very noticeable in long stair designs. @klei.ruby knows the issue and they had a possible fix in place, but the fix caused matter duplication which flooded a base. My guess is this bug fell down the priority list and got forgotten.

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2 minutes ago, mathmanican said:

If things bead you will lose a bit of heat.

The design supports a mirror of it and since it's only at the bead it can be lived with. It has actually become an issue of adjusting to the geography of the map then.

 

5 minutes ago, mathmanican said:

they had a possible fix in place, but the fix caused matter duplication which flooded a base

A typical "When the cure is worse than the illness". The name of the game is how many ramifications can they catch.

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Always glad to see a fellow magmamancer. Thank you for sharing.

Please excuse the plug and unoriginal name. Here's my variant in case you haven't seen it.

It's very compact and efficient. It seems to avoid the freeze-in-same-tile-as-debris bug (you can see the debris pile changing temperature) (be careful on yours). By the way, you might be deleting or creating heat by using two contact points here. See this link for details, with another melter by ghkbrew.

image.png.7577093f3bcc974bebed1e2702744351.png

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3 hours ago, nakomaru said:

It's very compact and efficient. It seems to avoid the freeze-in-same-tile-as-debris bug (you can see the debris pile changing temperature) (be careful on yours). By the way, you might be deleting or creating heat by using two contact points here. See this link for details, with another melter by ghkbrew.

image.png.7577093f3bcc974bebed1e2702744351.png

I hope it does avoid the bug. In this area debris is always falling on top of debris. A close up on this "first but last" heat exchanger might help you help me. :grin:

A little narrative first:

After the initial spinup finishes (I consider it done once the drip begins at about cycle 6 from start up) secondary heating is performed with the drip itself. This traverses the obsidian ladder column which happens to have a regolith rail in the background.

Three final heat absorption steps are planned in the end of the drip:

  1. Into fourth obsidian tower exchange via shipping bridge.
  2. Into "cold regolith" that comes from "space"
  3. Into exchange plate at bottom as fail safe.

Step 3 should never happen on a full regolith rail because it is caught and frozen into debris by the time the bead reaches 2. Regolith is heated from around 275ºC  - 280ºC to little above 330ºC. This is "shared" in the plate below.

 

This is a step before the bead insta-freezes into 1406ºC-ish debris.

845457376_TheYarmv1-01chillertile.thumb.png.2db784fb3494e1eae3ff4c0fda0ada7d.png

If for some odd reason we should run out of regolith to freeze the magma, then point 3 applies and is caught 1 space above the airflow tile by the diamond tempshift plate. By then it would be severely cooled to about 1250ºC or below as the mass & temp is very good for a fail safe.

 

3 hours ago, nakomaru said:

Please excuse the plug and unoriginal name.

I call mine The Y.A.R.M (yet another regolith melter)

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BTW:

I'm switching from towers to donuts. Tile to tile conduction sucks and a tempshift plate with liquid metal filling seems to coax the regolith just right.

1103119377_TheYarmv1-02donut.png.53f40bdab197f4b9632bf4dbfa7257ad.png

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3 hours ago, mathmanican said:

Maybe we can hear from @Lifegrow again. :) 

He should be here with us in spirit to the very least. Presenting the Y.A.R.M. 2.0 (Or box of donuts.)

1165568916_TheYarmv2-017g-s.thumb.png.59c4f1502c05d83b72eaefe3ea967f34.png

Reheating of the magma pool is done about every 6.85 - 6.89 cycles. The refueling loop is 7 segments long so 70kg is sent to the magma blade as spent fuel.

70kg ÷ (6.85 x 600s) gives approximately 17 g/s

How this is measured:

  • Amount of spent magma is tracked by the liquid reservoir.
  • An automatic notifier is set to pause game when refueling threshold is met. A marker is built when game is paused to track game time in cycles. (see automation ribbons at bottom right)
  • Once reheating is done, then game is set to full speed (Debug Ctrl+U) until we hit 1455.1ºC - I know this isn't the best but try and stare at the game without dupes for so long without adding to the madness.

Takeaways:

Mark my words: Empty shipping boxes are your enemy. Conveyor bridges are your friend and will get rid of this amazon effect.

First marker is built prior to turning on this build.  Starting magma temperature was 1657ºC, I sampled it to keep track of it (I'm forgetful at times...) 150+ cycles later and the first reheat was ready. Oof.

300107521_startingmagmatemp.png.582d92c03834af4fbb33408da7d19d6a.png

I wasn't completely aware that building the marker should be done on game paused so first 2 markers are somewhat skewed. Data is taken from last two.

Every reheat cycle takes the magma from 1455ºC up to 1457.5ºC.

There are 16 donuts in this version. Could probably make do with a dozen. The last four did only very little to up the regolith temperature by fractions of a degree. Talk about diminishing returns.

Thermium & insulation were used where needed, but not required. Steel and diamond are the most exotic materials after that. That and veritable truckloads of obsidian. No heat transmitting bridges were added (unless we count the ones that were destined to melt and fill those savory donuts.)

I guess that's it for this one in sandbox mode. Next up will be building this in survival, once I get that dropper chute built and vacuumed... From the very top to the magma biome.

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6 hours ago, JRup said:

I'm switching from towers to donuts. Tile to tile conduction sucks and a tempshift plate with liquid metal filling seems to coax the regolith just right.

I love donuts as much as the next guy, but I suspect adding bridges to the towers to force horizontal conduction will give you a more efficient heat exchanger that 16 donuts.

Though it is one of the few layouts I haven't tested. Did you do any testing?

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2 minutes ago, ghkbrew said:

I suspect adding bridges to the towers to force horizontal conduction will give you a more efficient heat exchanger that 16 donuts.

I wanted to try out vertical towers on account of debris exchanging with the tile below them as well. Turned out that those 126 tiles worked out rather well just for being a massive block of obsidian. I'll go back to testing that configuration combining some revised ideas from v1 later. It will still be a vertical arrangement, though.

I then resorted to donuts with a tempshift plate in the middle. This turned out spectacularly well; the first four donuts in the build used thermium tempshifts and liquid aluminum filling (125kg) gave the best roi: regolith rose from 300ºC average to 1299ºC. The rest only use obsidian and lead but are already far enough down the rail that it doesn't matter.

Spoiler

If we graph the behaviour then it's very logarithm-like but I wanna keep ugly words at an arm's length.

I'm actually going to be cutting down on the amount of donuts soon. But I've stared at a screen long enough for today, I guess.

19 minutes ago, ghkbrew said:

I suspect adding bridges to the towers to force horizontal conduction will give you a more efficient heat exchanger that 16 donuts.

Has anybody done a tempshift plate vs bridges comparison?

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On 5/6/2021 at 10:25 AM, JRup said:

Has anybody done a tempshift plate vs bridges comparison?

There's no real reason why you would expect tempshifts to be better than bridges.

  • Bridges only conduct perpendicular to material flow.
  • Tempshifts conduct in both directions.
    • Any conduction in the direction of your flow is an inefficiency.

I tested a slightly smaller version of the exchanger I already posted. It is 99.9% efficient (Q_Actual/Q_Ideal) and 14x9 in size. Good luck doing better.

image.thumb.png.c6d3afa17d69e605218e3d840a537b48.png
image.thumb.png.42e62e17e6604dd271f150d6b812e1d0.png

On 5/6/2021 at 5:07 PM, degr said:

What the meaning of regolith melter? Is it some kind of energy source? Still can't understand

Look at this part:

image.png.6b05fab927250ed69962c7b3a065824d.png

You multiply your heat by more than 12× right away. But actually, all of the extra heat is directly useful. Compare turbine heat sources:

  • At 20kg/s, converting 300C regolith to 140C regolith with turbines consumes 640k DTU/s.
  • At 20kg/s, converting 1187.4C igneous rock to 140C igneous rock with turbines consumes 20948 kDTU/s.
    • This is more than 32 times the amount of useful heat.

Additionally, igneous rock is more versatile than regolith/mafic rock. You can use it in buildings or convert it to coal, sand, or glass. Also it's neat.

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5 hours ago, nakomaru said:

I tested a slightly smaller version of the exchanger I already posted. It is 99.9% efficient (Q_Actual/Q_Ideal) and 9x14 in size. Good luck doing better.

image.thumb.png.c6d3afa17d69e605218e3d840a537b48.png
image.thumb.png.42e62e17e6604dd271f150d6b812e1d0.png

I love this breakdown of where RM's actually stand. That heat exchanger looks tasty, might have words with it later.

For completion's sake, this is some performance information on the 16 donut box. Bear in mind all this data is mostly captured in high speed (Ctrl+U) so I shall take this as reference only. There are some caveats I'd like to point out in advance as well.

It is regrettable that I did not directly test with 300ºC regolith as input, this was fortunately evened out to an average 300ºC prior to entering donuts heat exchangers by the fail safe catcher previously described. Input regolith was at 275ºC from feeder box which rose to 276.1ºC from equipment generated heat... I will take note of separating said heat from testing. (I kind of take dupe accessibility and equipment maintenance into account when building as a reflex so Liam does not suffer.)

Without further ado:

GIGO data (not accurate):

  • IN: 275ºC Regolith, 1407.1ºC Igneous Rock
  • OUT: 1185ºC Igneous Rock.

521479497_TheYarmv2-0GIGOresults.thumb.png.cdce195537d079bd67f29e5ee105019a.png

Igneous rock when loaded to heat exchangers:

402200297_TheYarmv2-0regolithfinalstretch.thumb.png.265dc0aca75776253c2d043e39fe116b.png

Regolith temp prior to entering magma bath, this rises up to 1408.2ºC depending on there being a drip at the moment:

1062190131_TheYarmv2-0regolithatdrip.png.619f89d07167125e5d950145bbbba402.png

 

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Be sure to isolate the exchanger when testing. FWIW I rate this 15x9 steel/obsidian exchanger at 98.8% efficiency, requiring 13.5x the work to account for inefficiency. (I originally made donuts, but since donuts need extra rails above and below, I just put tiles there too.) Of course, the bigger you make it, the better it will perform.

image.thumb.png.621d0634ccc2c5b621414876735e6a7a.png

Adding horizonal bridges barely helps: 98.9%.

Replacing the tempshift plates/steam with obsidian tiles increases this to 99.3%, now requiring 8.8x the work to account for inefficiency compared to my 14x9 design.

Well, I think that question is answered.

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@nakomaruUh ... remember when I casually mentioned I was gonna have a "word" with your heat exchanger?

I'm somewhat at a loss as what to expect here. Loving the uplift so far, though:

1115531447_TheYarmv3-0(nakomaruexchanger).thumb.png.87726487fac89a8bdca3be450a0c1ad8.png

Thanks for the testbed map as well!

Yarm variant 3 spinup complete.sav

Regarding donuts and the need for additional railing. This can be minimized by using a more vertical distribution vs a horizontal layout as seen in your heat exchanger. (I appreciate how the temperature conduction is rather vertical thanks to the wealth of bridges used.)

Speaking of bridges. I did come across a minor snag when reproducing your heat exchanger: It so happens that because regolith is the first to flow into the build it will then flow into the igneous rock output line. This is easily solved by flipping the conveyor bridges in charge of heat conduction so that the output is presented to the regolith rail.

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Looking good. You don't need to put the top rails above the top brick, by the way, in case you want to put ceramic insulation there. Same with the extra bit on the left.

Also, since you are using the conveyer bridges to help conduct heat, you need to add a system to guarantee that the exchanger rails are never empty, or you will go mad. Like this:

eCOIMDYGyJ.thumb.gif.4dceb8549bc01e25176f922a67a99057.gif

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1 hour ago, JRup said:

I'm somewhat at a loss as what to expect here. Loving the uplift so far, though

After further observation, a quick explanation as to why there is a bit of a higher temperature in the output regolith: The magma catcher is responsible for this uplift. It brings the initial regolith temperature up to an average of 322ºC from the original 300ºC, thus cushioning the final energy drain before leaving the heat exchanger.

Some GIGO data on this take of Nakomaru's heat exchanger:

In:

  • Regolith 300ºC [312.5ºC 331.7ºC after magma dripper],
  • Igneous rock: 1407.3

Out:

  • Regolith: 1407.4ºC - 1407.8ºC (Range is given on account of magma dripper.)
  • Igneous rock: 1190ºC

Some tracking of fuel (taken after initial spinup and adjusting magma chamber):

image.png.ccde290a5abfb28345b663490a0552f2.png

7 minutes ago, nakomaru said:

Also, since you are using the conveyer bridges to help conduct heat, you need to add a system to guarantee that the exchanger rails are never empty, or you will go mad.

Correct. The way I switched it up happens to redirect igneous rock back to the melter in case we run out of regolith...

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8 minutes ago, JRup said:

The way I switched it up happens to redirect igneous rock back to the melter in case we run out of regolith...

Even if you don't use bridges, you should add this system. It will dynamically slow down your igneous rock output rate to match your regolith input rate. Without it, rock always leaves at 20kg/s, when it could be spending more time in the exchanger.

This also means that you can leave the bridges in the way I specified (white nodes on regolith rail), which means there are no problems when you run out of regolith. Then you solve the other problem by preloading the igneous rails.

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1 minute ago, nakomaru said:

Without it, rock always leaves at 20kg/s, when it should be spending more time in the exchanger.

I did notice the occasional hiccup, but once it's done heating up there are no gaps. I will include the sensors and switch the bridges back on the next iteration... I did actually reproduce most of the exchange block just by staring at it :lol: (I was already using vanilla and haven't switched it to DLC so far, it's different now that your testbed3 is around...)

20 minutes ago, nakomaru said:

You don't need to put the top rails above the top brick, by the way, in case you want to put ceramic insulation there.

I like the animation :whistle:
I'll also build a mirrored version and sit the airflow tile on the obsidian tiles, it'll just heat them up and they're steel anyway. (Building this in survival will put a dent on any space program on account of the steel needed so...)

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Update: So it begins... The quest for "unnecessary" power...

Screenshots will tell a story of many cycles and carbonated "malt beverage".

Many thanks to related parties, btw salt booster (only 40kg needed, really) makes this build average on 15 g/s of magma and we're freezing magma to 1408.3ºC igneous on average (it's that magical 1.5ºC)... output was on 1190ºC igneous after that lovely heat exchanger (it was rising, slowly.... but I wasn't going to bench yet another build for an extended time)

@nakomaru said something in the lines of "good luck making a better heat exchanger, so I could only think about making it with carpeted tile. (It does make tile mass increase by 2kg, not like it matters - methinks.)

Spinup times are really fast (~20 cycles in sandbox which means heating 3800kg copper for stabiliser blob/salt gas + shipping 20kg/s regolith) so no absurd wait times for the toy to wake up... This keeps it dupe-buildable without going through absurd lengths to get it done...

 

653424481_Sobeginsmelter.thumb.png.180cbcd2009e33e300c43c8287cb60a1.png

The big picture... regolith drop comes all the way from the top.

719002788_biggerpicture.thumb.png.791d93997a3dbcf496529eb273e539cc.png

Bigger version of melter in spoiler...

Spoiler

213503005_YS3.0(ticklesversionnext).thumb.png.20a23f0d6d44469a55846e60c51c1a58.png

 

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