Foxster

Needed tweaks to fuel cells

7 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

Building ion ships powered by fuel cells is a nice way to offset somewhat reduced dV with no need for solar panels - especially useful at the outer planets. 

However, fuel cells and fuel cell arrays are not balanced. 

One fuel cell array can power two Dawn engines. However, you'd think to power one Dawn engine you'd use 3 fuel cells. Nope - they only provide 1/12th the power of an array despite weighing ~1/5 the mass each. 

So to power just one Dawn engine you need 6 fuel cells, which weigh more than one array, meaning you are better using an array for one Dawn engine. Making the fuel cell pretty much useless. 

The simple fix would be to make the mass and electrical generation of a fuel cell 1/6 of an array.

Whilst sorting that out: The array is a fugly thing! It is a big awkward lump that looks bad when placed just about anywhere. Would be much better if we also had an equivalent 1.25m ring part. 

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Edited by Foxster
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I don't mind that there's some economy of scale in using the larger part. I do agree that an inline version would be quite handy. 

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Agreed on almost all points. Still would've used 6x fuel cell in symmetry around that Oscar-B though, despite the 1/5th extra mass.

And the array makes for a nice mini-rover body.

 

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This is especially odd seeing as the array is just 6 cells on a plate.

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I think the mechanics need a revamp, but I'm not sure about an inline version- I like these interesting radial parts.

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Posted (edited)

The array is exclusively radial probably because it fits perfectly on the side of an ISRU unit. At least I tend to use it that way.

Edited by Veeltch

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4 minutes ago, Veeltch said:

The array is exclusively radial probably because it fits perfectly on the side of an ISRU unit. At least I tend to use it that way.

I know you're not saying this, but you make it sound like it was made to only have a single use case.

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