Power transformer behavior inconsistent depending on number of power suppliers (causing overloads)

  • Branch: Preview Branch Version: Windows Fixed

On a circuit with one transformer supplying power and one or more consumer transformers, the consumer transformers take a proportionate share of power to prevent the connected wire from overloading. However, if a second supplier transformer is added to the same circuit, the consumer transformers will each draw the maximum amount possible (in some cases, even multiplied by the number of suppliers), even if it overloads the wire. The expected behavior is that the consumer transformers balance the load as with one supplier transformer.

The behavior as currently implemented is inconsistent, as it breaks the concept of transformers protecting circuits (and possibly the concept that power suppliers don't count towards overload limits). Similar behavior can be seen when a charged battery is the sole supplier to the consumer transformers. However, there is nothing that indicates that a battery protects a circuit, nor has any inherent limit on discharge, so the case of overloading with a battery is less problematic.

The main reason for creating this kind of circuit is to have multiple power generators scattered about the map, connected by cheaper wire. There have been a number of threads and comments in the forums about this (just search for "transformer"). My concern is mainly about having consistent behavior in different situations, for new and experienced players alike. A new player probably won't understand why their circuit might be overloading; indeed, it took me a few hours in sandbox to figure out this behavior.



Steps to Reproduce
1. Create a circuit with one transformer providing power to multiple child consumer transformers. 2. Note the values being consumed by the consumer transformers in the energy tab of the inspector. The total should not exceed the rating of the circuit's wire. 3. Add another supplier transformer to the same circuit. 4. Note the values being consumed by the consumer transformers in the energy tab of the inspector (or just wait for an overload to occur). The total will likely exceed the rating of the circuit's wire.

User Feedback

A developer has marked this issue as fixed. This means that the issue has been addressed in the current development build and will likely be in the next update.

If you look on the transformer in the electric overlay; you see a little battery in the middle (1KJ for the little transformer and 4KJ for the big one).

This means that little tranformers are 1KW consumers. (this battery will fill up when you power up ur circuit).

You use a small wire (1KW max) to supply 2KW consumers. So the wire overload. It s normal. It's consistent.


Transformers are means to be supplied by heavy wire; like on the schema on your screenshot (the big transformers is a 4KW consumers anyway no choice here). Heavywire can be used to link multiple generator.


Edited by Anacross

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I built a better testing setup, since I didn't feel that I was completely clear on what I felt the inconsistent behavior is. Put more simply: consumer transformers draw power differently if the suppliers are all transformers, versus if the suppliers are all generators. When the suppliers are all transformers, consumer transformers will consume more than their stated wattage in order to match the total output of all supplier transformers. When the supply is only generators, the consumer transformers will consume only up to their stated wattage. Details and screenshots are included below. If I'm overthinking this or generally misunderstanding how transformers work, and this is all working as designed, then the resolution might be just to explain them better in the game.

Setup Details

Basic setup is eleven 2kW circuits, twenty-one small transformers that act as suppliers when active, and thirty steam generators at full capacity (25.5kW).

  • Configuration 1: all consumers connected directly to all generators. Each consumer transformer is drawing 1kW (as expected), for 11kW total consumed.
  • Configuration 2: all consumers connected directly to all generators, with only six generators active (5100W). Five of the consumer transformers draw 1000W, one draws 100W. The transformers that get to consume power change each tick or second. This falls in line with how other buildings work in insufficient power supply.
  • Configuration 3: all consumers connected to twenty of the supplier transformers. Each consumer transformer is drawing 1.82kW (more than would be expected based on in-game text); this is the 20kW provided by the supplier transformers split evenly between eleven consumers.
  • Configuration 4: all consumers connected to all twenty-one of the supplier transformers. Each consumer transformer is drawing 1.91kW. Because the supplier transformers themselves have 25.5kW available, they can provide 21kW, which the consumers split between themselves. This causes overloads between the suppliers and consumers.

A variant of configuration 4 is to disable all but a few generators, in which case, there are no overloads, since the supplier transformers have less power available. Also, the behavior of the consumers is the same when they use large transformers; wires overload more, as expected.





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I read this post after reading the one below. It appears that the transformers themselves are working fine, but the game's rounding is the issue. See my response in this below thread.


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