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Easy pre space material LOX cooling?


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Actually completely doable with Thermo Regulators and gaseous Hydrogen as coolant. I have done this several times. Use 2 Thermo Regulators in series for better efficiency. You can also use 2 or more cooling loops. Yes, consumes more power than using Super Coolant and a Thermo Aquatuner, but with just one or two rockets it really is not an issue.

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Two ways:

Hydrogen Thermo Regulators, just use a bunch of them. They don't use much power each, like 5 Thermo Regulators is the power consumption of 1 Aquatuner. The build's a bit bulky.

Since the cooling power is a bit lacking and the condensation chamber is going to be a bit larger due to needing to fit in more radiant gas pipes (I tend to prefer running an independent cooling loop for each Regulator rather than chaining them), you'll get quicker results if you optimize the chamber insulation, specifically line the LOx chamber with lead or gold metal tiles for their low thermal mass, then line that with Igneous Rock or Ceramic Insulated Tiles for the actual insulation. This cools down A LOT faster than lining the chamber with insulated tiles, and then you should benefit from actually zero heat transfer due to the heat transfer calculations between insulated tiles and solid tiles. That means all the limited cooling is actually going to making LOx.

What's the other way to generate LOx? Basically cheating. You can pump LOx, Valved to 1000 g/s, and counter-flow heat exchange it with oxygen gas (I would recommend counterflowing directly between radiant pipes and radiant gas pipes until the end when the oxygen gas is nearly cold enough to condense), as long as the LOx is pumped directly into the oxidizer tank it can safely get inside the oxidizer tank and remain in liquid form, hot, but liquid. Meanwhile the oxygen gas has been cooled to basically condensation temperature for exactly no cooling energy: in fact with this scheme, you can generate LOx with only a tiny input of cooling, after you've generated the initial seed liquid oxygen you mainly just pay energy to run the pumps. Since the 1000 g/s LOx has to continuously flow to stop it busting the pipes I normally just run the pipe past the oxidizer tank and dump it back into the "hot oxygen" end of the system using a liquid vent and let the gas pumps pick it up again.

edit: One other thing to note is that an AETN provides 80 kDTU/s of cooling and can be used as a useful pre-cooler, doing about 90% of the cooling for far less energy than a thermo regulator. Pre-cooling using pwater aquatuner and/or ethanol aquatuner is also an option.

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Ahh yes, the LOX question.... Thermo Regulators can do it just fine. My lesson learned is you want to use hydrogen as a coolant in the loops and automate it so that the hydrogen itself doesn't go below -240 (IIRC) Steel would be your go-to for the radiant gas piping...

Here's a good one from way back when... Note the metal tile at the bottom where LOX pools, this is on purpose so that there is not much instability going on after the oxygen has liquefied. Gold, lead and tungsten are the best options for lining the pool with metal tile on account of their low SHC... If insulating tile is used then there will be many "bubbly" events until the insulated tiles are in a temperature that's in agreement with your LOX... (And your liquid hydrogen when you get to that.)

 

 

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5 hours ago, blakemw said:

Since the cooling power is a bit lacking and the condensation chamber is going to be a bit larger due to needing to fit in more radiant gas pipes (I tend to prefer running an independent cooling loop for each Regulator rather than chaining them), you'll get quicker results if you optimize the chamber insulation, specifically line the LOx chamber with lead or gold metal tiles for their low thermal mass, then line that with Igneous Rock or Ceramic Insulated Tiles for the actual insulation. This cools down A LOT faster than lining the chamber with insulated tiles, and then you should benefit from actually zero heat transfer due to the heat transfer calculations between insulated tiles and solid tiles. That means all the limited cooling is actually going to making LOx.

Interesting. Will try that next time. The frequent "bubbling" with just insulated tiles is a (small) problem.

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as im building something similar because i simply not have supercoolant yet and im not hurry either for get that

there is seems some things tho

avoid any kind  heat what you not want, soo better if you build that some sort vacuum camber   

atleast that area where you store that cooled liquid

 

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51 minutes ago, suicide commando said:

we used wire bridges to spread cooling around

Nowadays we also use gas & liquid bridges, and even conveyor bridges... *gasp!*

Here's a non-shocking proposition: how would you feel about radiant gas and liquid bridges?

It weirded me out when I thought about it, but then again I don't think we'll be getting piping made out of mafic rock, so we can only dream.

 

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12 hours ago, Gurgel said:

Wire bridges do that?

A wire bridge is a 1x3 structure.  Each of those tiles interacts with its environment.  Liquid and gas bridges behave the same way.  Think of it as a 25kg 1x3 temp shift plate.  And think of a temp shift plate as a 3x3 building (because that's what it behaves as to the physics engine).  One of the key things to remember is that if you bridge across an insulated tile, you're also creating a thermal bridge across both sides. 

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