Nertea

[1.7.x] Kerbal Atomics: fancy nuclear engines! (Sept 11)

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34 minutes ago, caodwolf said:

First thanks for all these great mods.    I do have an issue which I cannot solve with this mod.   When I install this mod and I am pretty good working with PC's files, editing etc......all my nuclear engines like the 'MRS Nuclear Quad 3.5' and the 'RS-2 'Tiny'  Nuclear Engine'  are converted from Liquid Fuel consumption to Hydrogen.   Any missions in progress utilizing these nuclear engines become inoperable as its fuel source has been redesignated from Liquid Fuel to Hydrogen.    After these missions are complete I plan to install this mod and use Hydrogen.  In the meantime I cannot design any new craft using nuclear engines so to avoid the same problem   Is this the way this mod is supposed to work ?  

Thanks

 

Dave T

Welcome to the forums!

In general, it's very difficult to design mods that can be added in the middle of an existing game without breaking something.  There isn't really a way to apply changes to new parts but not to parts on existing craft.

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Thanks.  I actually just found my answer reading a similar post that I missed yesterday.  By applying the provided 'patch' file one is able to retain the nuclear engines as is.  So I am back in business

 

Dave T

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So I have Kerbal Atomics, NFE, cryo, etc.  And all the appropriate patches installed.

So I load up the stock NV and it has it's NFE reactor built into it.  Once loaded in a flight scene, however, there is no info about the reactor (everything is blank) and I can get it to use fuel but not produce any thrust at all.  

Anyone seen this problem?

I have scoured the config for the nuclear engine stock part and can't see anything wrong.  I'm going to load up a sandbox and test all the other engines and reactors and see what's going on.

After testing, only the electrical generating reactors work.  With the NF patch installed, none of the engine reactors function at all.  They give no temperature data and produce no thrust.  

FINAL EDIT:  Nm.  I got it to work.  weird.  I just had activate the engine first then the reactor.  In that order.  By staging it, not GUI activation.  Just in case anyone else had that problem.

Edited by autumnalequinox
more info

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NFE patch Config for Modular Rocket Systems Quad-Nuclear Engine to give it a reactor.  Everything quadrupled.

@PART[NB2mNuclearEngine]:NEEDS[NearFutureElectrical]:AFTER[KerbalAtomics]
{
	@mass -= 6.50
	!MODULE[ModuleAlternator] {}
	MODULE
	{
		name = FissionReactor
		StartActionName = Start Reactor
		StopActionName = Deactivate Reactor
		// Show or hide the staging icon
		
		UseStagingIcon = true
		// Force part activate on load
		UseForcedActivation = false

		UseSpecializationBonus = false
		AutoShutdown = true
		DefaultShutoffTemp = 0.90

		// Heat animation, plays when above nominal temp
		// OverheatAnimation = Reactor_1MW_Heat

		// Heat to generate (kW *50)
		HeatGeneration = 55000	
		
		// Above this temp more power output but risky
		NominalTemperature = 3000
		// Above this temp, reactor takes damage
		CriticalTemperature = 3400
		
		MaximumTemperature = 3800

		// Amount of damage taken by core when over critical temp
		// %/s/K, so with value 0.001, at 200 K over CriticalTemp, reactor takes 0.2% damage/s
		CoreDamageRate = 0.01

		// Base lifetime calculations off this resource
		FuelName = EnrichedUranium

		// Heating
		GeneratesHeat = false
		TemperatureModifier
		{
			key = 0 0
		}				
		//250000		

		INPUT_RESOURCE
		{
			ResourceName = EnrichedUranium
			Ratio = 0.0027
			FlowMode = NO_FLOW
		}
		OUTPUT_RESOURCE
		{
			ResourceName = DepletedFuel
			Ratio = 0.0027
			DumpExcess = false
			FlowMode = NO_FLOW
		}
	}
	MODULE
	{
		name = ModuleCoreHeat
		CoreTempGoal = 3000					//Internal temp goal - we don't transfer till we hit this point
		CoreToPartRatio = 0.1				//Scale back cooling if the part is this % of core temp
		CoreTempGoalAdjustment = 0			//Dynamic goal adjustment
		CoreEnergyMultiplier = 0.1			//What percentage of our core energy do we transfer to the part
		HeatRadiantMultiplier = 0.05		//If the core is hotter, how much heat radiates?
		CoolingRadiantMultiplier = 0		//If the core is colder, how much radiates?
		HeatTransferMultiplier = 0			//If the part is hotter, how much heat transfers in?
		CoolantTransferMultiplier = 0.01	//If the part is colder, how much of our energy can we transfer?
		radiatorCoolingFactor = 1			//How much energy we pull from core with an active radiator?  >= 1
		radiatorHeatingFactor = 0.01		//How much energy we push to the active radiator
		MaxCalculationWarp = 1000			//Based on how dramatic the changes are, this is the max rate of change
		CoreShutdownTemp = 3800				//At what core temperature do we shut down all generators on this part?
		MaxCoolant = 1100					//Maximum amount of radiator capacity we can consume - 50 = 1 small
	}
	MODULE
	{
		name = FissionFlowRadiator
		maxEnergyTransfer = 55000
		overcoolFactor = 0.20
		maxLinksAway = 1
		isCoreRadiator = true
	}
	RESOURCE
	{
		name = EnrichedUranium
		amount = 200
		maxAmount = 200
	}
	RESOURCE
	{
		name = DepletedFuel
		amount = 0
		maxAmount = 200
	}
	MODULE
	{
		name = FissionEngine
		HeatUsed = 1100
		TempIspScale
		{
			key = 300 0
			key = 1000 0.2
			key = 3000 1.0
			key = 4000 1.3
		}	
	}
	MODULE
	{
		name = RadioactiveStorageContainer
		DangerousFuel = DepletedFuel
		SafeFuel = EnrichedUranium
		// What enginer level is needed to transfer the safe fuel
		EngineerLevelForSafe = 1
		// What enginer level is needed to transfer the dangerous fuel
		EngineerLevelForDangerous = 3
		// Max temp for transferring fuel into or out of the part
		MaxTempForTransfer = 400
		// kW of heat per unit of waste
		HeatFluxPerWasteUnit = 5
	}
	@MODULE[ModuleEnginesFX] {
		@heatProduction *= 0.1
	}
}

 

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@autumnalequinox, there's no need to quadruple all of the things. All you need to increase are the things that would logically increase by clustering 4 nukes:

  • Total heat generated (FissionReactor - HeatGeneration)
  • Fuel consumption rate (FissionReactor - Input/OutputResource)
  • The maximum cooling possible (ModuleCoreHeat - MaxCoolant)
  • The cooling provided by mass flow (FissionFlowRadiator - maxEnergyTransfer)
  • The heat that can be used to produce thrust (FissionEngine - HeatUsed)
  • Fuel amounts (Enriched/DepletedUranium amounts)

Leave everything else the same if you want it to make sense. 

Edited by Nertea

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4 hours ago, Nertea said:

@autumnalequinox, there's no need to quadruple all of the things. All you need to increase are the things that would logically increase by clustering 4 nukes:

  • Total heat generated (FissionReactor - HeatGeneration)
  • Fuel consumption rate (FissionReactor - Input/OutputResource)
  • The maximum cooling possible (ModuleCoreHeat - MaxCoolant)
  • The cooling provided by mass flow (FissionFlowRadiator - maxEnergyTransfer)
  • The heat that can be used to produce thrust (FissionEngine - HeatUsed)
  • Fuel amounts (Enriched/DepletedUranium amounts)

Leave everything else the same if you want it to make sense. 

I actually just quadrupled the fuel capacity, fuel flow, and adjusted the weight.  I didn't play with any of the other settings.  Thanks!  I'll get rid of it and make a better config.

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Unwrapped and initially textured this monster. I really like how it turned out. Needs detail evidently (just colour, AO and rough highlighting now), but it looks sufficiently monstrous.

heZKujy.png

Also made some fuel tanks for nuclear salt water. I rather suspect this engine belongs in a different mod, as it can't really be balanced beside anything stock. We'll see!

 

vSdeNxf.png

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First time commenting EVER anything KSP related. 600 hours logged though.

My question: I am using the Hydrogen orange tanks with cooling to prevent boiloff. I have more than enough EC generation from a reactor, but when I time warp to max I get boil off on just ONE tank in a 4 way symmetrical configuration. Power never shows a drop, i have 64000 stored charge that never drops. I can't figure out why this is happening or how to fix it.

Advice?

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12 hours ago, Nertea said:

Unwrapped and initially textured this monster. I really like how it turned out. Needs detail evidently (just colour, AO and rough highlighting now), but it looks sufficiently monstrous.

heZKujy.png

Also made some fuel tanks for nuclear salt water. I rather suspect this engine belongs in a different mod, as it can't really be balanced beside anything stock. We'll see!

 

vSdeNxf.png

Somebody call Zubrin here. He'd be really proud. :)

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On 6/21/2016 at 4:48 PM, spectralechos said:

First time commenting EVER anything KSP related. 600 hours logged though.

My question: I am using the Hydrogen orange tanks with cooling to prevent boiloff. I have more than enough EC generation from a reactor, but when I time warp to max I get boil off on just ONE tank in a 4 way symmetrical configuration. Power never shows a drop, i have 64000 stored charge that never drops. I can't figure out why this is happening or how to fix it.

Advice?

This is logged on git but it's more of a KSP issue. 

  • Tank needs say 10 Ec/s, which is about 0.2 Ec/physics tick (standard physics tick is 0.02)
  • Reactor produces say 250 Ec/s, so 2.5 Ec/physics tick.
  • Normally, tanks consume 0.2 Ec in sequence 4 times, then the reactor fills up the used storage (let's say you have 1 large battery so 4K Ec) again
  • Physics tick increases to 2000 at max time warp
  • Tank now consumes 2000 Ec/physics tick. Cool 4 in sequence and you're likely to run out of Ec storage in the first couple tanks (you basically need 8000 Ec storage minimum). So the 3rd tank in order will now think that it's out of power.
  • Reactor fills the storage back up. 

This can't be truly fixed unless one of two things happen:

  • Squad refactors their resource consumption code to operate on rates instead of storages
  • I write a specialized resource managing class to do this myself (KSPI does this)

What I'm doing for the next version of this plugin is just not simulating electrical draw over about 10 000x. It is approximately assumed that if you have ZBO tanks on your ship and you have full Ec when you pass 10 000x time warp, you can handle the consumption at higher time warps. If you pass that inflection point and you have no Ec onboard, I assume you have run completely out of power and there will be constant boiloff. 

On 6/21/2016 at 11:23 PM, shynung said:

Somebody call Zubrin here. He'd be really proud. :)

Part of my long term crusade to get atomic rockets to notice me :P

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screenshot9.png

This is a KCT sim I ran to show a good size/number of hydrogen tanks before your nuclear thermal rockets start to make major gains over cryogenic engines.  This example uses a simple stock engine with Kerbal atomics/NFE.  I know there were some that were concerned they were being outperformed by cryo engines. At this size, the oxidizer in the tanks for a cryo setup would start to lower the delta-v.  

Of course this setup isn't necessary, I just think it's pretty.  Oh and the forward payload is about 10 tons (actually low for a nuclear setup in KA, but with my mods it works as a short range interplanetary rig).

As far as costs, KA nukes work best for large cruiser designs since that extra d/v can mean the difference between keeping a ship in orbit on return vs jettisoning it/re-entry/goodbye expensive hardware.

For tugs I prefer cryogenic engines.

Edited by autumnalequinox
correction

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On 23/06/2016 at 10:59 PM, RedParadize said:

Its facinating to see how Atomic rockets website survive after 17 years. So Obsolete, and yet so good. 

I'm not sure it can be obsolete when there's nothing to replace it :)

On 21/06/2016 at 6:57 PM, Nertea said:

Also made some fuel tanks for nuclear salt water. I rather suspect this engine belongs in a different mod, as it can't really be balanced beside anything stock. We'll see!

Balance is a slightly weird concept when it comes to a single player sandbox, but to fit it in the progression this has the same issues as things like Roverdude's Orion mod (although a NSWR is an order of magnitude more powerful). That feels pretty "balanced" to me, in that it appears fairly early in the CTT, but is really expensive and is awkward to refuel - the NSWR rocket won't appear as early, but both of the caveats can very reasonably apply to Zubrin's insanity above. "Zubrin's Insanity Above" would be a great name for any ship using it, of course.

I can definitely understand why you would see this as apart from the other nuclear engines. This perhaps belongs more with the likes of a Fusion reactor (and your previous thoughts about why Fusion reactors/EM drives/whatever aren't in Near Future are entirely valid, I think).

That said, currently I'm fairly happy with having Roverdude's Albecurrie drive as the top of the tech tree - everything up to that point is fairly plausible, but it feels okay from a game perspective to break things if you've gotten that far. Having a late game power system (or several, if the intention was to really dive into the whole "GW Thruster" thing) that make preceding ones irrelevant isn't necessarily the end of the world here, and could even feel like a justified reward.

 

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@NerteaCan you please indicate what diameter that nuclear salt-water rocket engine would be in-game, to provide us with a sense of its scale?

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4 hours ago, Domfluff said:

I'm not sure it can be obsolete when there's nothing to replace it :)

I'm talking more about the website format in general. The content and retro style is just perfect.

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7 hours ago, Domfluff said:

 

I'm not sure it can be obsolete when there's nothing to replace it :)

Balance is a slightly weird concept when it comes to a single player sandbox, but to fit it in the progression this has the same issues as things like Roverdude's Orion mod (although a NSWR is an order of magnitude more powerful). That feels pretty "balanced" to me, in that it appears fairly early in the CTT, but is really expensive and is awkward to refuel - the NSWR rocket won't appear as early, but both of the caveats can very reasonably apply to Zubrin's insanity above. "Zubrin's Insanity Above" would be a great name for any ship using it, of course.

I can definitely understand why you would see this as apart from the other nuclear engines. This perhaps belongs more with the likes of a Fusion reactor (and your previous thoughts about why Fusion reactors/EM drives/whatever aren't in Near Future are entirely valid, I think).

That said, currently I'm fairly happy with having Roverdude's Albecurrie drive as the top of the tech tree - everything up to that point is fairly plausible, but it feels okay from a game perspective to break things if you've gotten that far. Having a late game power system (or several, if the intention was to really dive into the whole "GW Thruster" thing) that make preceding ones irrelevant isn't necessarily the end of the world here, and could even feel like a justified reward.

 

Yeah that's pretty much how it goes, but I'm always leery of stepping into the world of engines that are superior in every way, particularly *this* much better. What I've done progression-wise is basically like this:

[Stock KSP Content]----[All my mods]----------------------------------------------------[NSWR]

It's so far beyond anything that it really doesn't seem right to put it in the same place. 

6 hours ago, StevieC said:

@NerteaCan you please indicate what diameter that nuclear salt-water rocket engine would be in-game, to provide us with a sense of its scale?

3.75m!

Anyways, here's KA version 0.2.3

  • KSP 1.1.3
  •  Updated bundled B9PartSwitch
  • Updated bundled MM
  • Updated bundled CRP
  • Updated bundled DeployableEngines
  • Improved FX for some engines
  • Many fixes and improvements to SimpleBoiloff

Mostly packaged stuff fixes, but a few improvements to boiloff calculations and such. 

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Version 0.2.3 on SpaceDock includes a bunch of dlls in /Gamedata/Cryotanks/Plugins that appears to be causing issues here.

 

 

Edited by antilochus
fixed

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13 hours ago, Nertea said:

Yeah that's pretty much how it goes, but I'm always leery of stepping into the world of engines that are superior in every way, particularly *this* much better. What I've done progression-wise is basically like this:

[Stock KSP Content]----[All my mods]----------------------------------------------------[NSWR]

It's so far beyond anything that it really doesn't seem right to put it in the same place. 

With a good reason. NSWR is practically the closest design we have to a torch drive. Awfully simple one, too; there's no reactor of any sort, just a reaction chamber, injectors, and a nozzle. It works almost like a hypergolic chemical rocket, in that (nuclear) fuel and propellant is basically the same thing, and power output is adjusted by merely adjusting propellant throttle valve.

In terms of game balance, yes, it's very far off the AWSM mark. I'd suggest giving it a quirk or two, like massive cooling requirements. Alternatively, a NSWR's propellant tank is basically a bundle of pipes coated with neutron absorbers, to keep the nuclear salt water from going off in the tank. This would mean the tanks have terrible full/empty mass ratio, because of the construction.

Also, I'd say this would fit into a new pack filled with absolutely overpowered engines, filled with things like fission-fragment engines, magneto inertial fusion engines, antimatter engines, and the like. KSP Interstellar, basically, but with better models. :) 

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Going by Zubrin's paper, a fair percentage of the propellant is Uranium (more than 17 tons on his example Titan trip) - that's going to make refuelling this extremely expensive and awkward for ISRU, since that will need processing. The cooling requirements are going to be massive as well (I forget precisely how this is modelled in High Frontier - 5 therms of cooling? 1 therm was 120MW, but I can't remember whether HF models this linearly or on a log 2)

Obviously the NSWR would fit in with a mod like DSEV. Obviously a Nertea-made advanced propulsion system pack would be unbelievable, but the chap has limited enough time as it is :)

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3 hours ago, shynung said:

With a good reason. NSWR is practically the closest design we have to a torch drive. Awfully simple one, too; there's no reactor of any sort, just a reaction chamber, injectors, and a nozzle. It works almost like a hypergolic chemical rocket, in that (nuclear) fuel and propellant is basically the same thing, and power output is adjusted by merely adjusting propellant throttle valve.

In terms of game balance, yes, it's very far off the AWSM mark. I'd suggest giving it a quirk or two, like massive cooling requirements. Alternatively, a NSWR's propellant tank is basically a bundle of pipes coated with neutron absorbers, to keep the nuclear salt water from going off in the tank. This would mean the tanks have terrible full/empty mass ratio, because of the construction.

Also, I'd say this would fit into a new pack filled with absolutely overpowered engines, filled with things like fission-fragment engines, magneto inertial fusion engines, antimatter engines, and the like. KSP Interstellar, basically, but with better models. :) 

This I like!  A super powered "far future technologies" pack.  Oh and make these things cost crazy money (like RoverDude does with Orion) that can be offset once you have some resource production set up off-world.

I'm not sure if others consider USI and Near Future to be it's own little allied thing (I call it Ultra-Stock+) vs. say KSPI but I think RoverDude covers fusion torches and warp drives already.  Seems like this could cover more exotic propulsion like fission fragment and catalyzed and maybe mass driver? :)

But since Near Future/Kerbal Atomics covers technically feasible/tested-but-not deployed hardware this stuff should definitely go into it's own category.  Maybe "Somewhat Distant but maybe-not too much Future Atomics"?  Or is that a mouthful? :P

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2 hours ago, Domfluff said:

Going by Zubrin's paper, a fair percentage of the propellant is Uranium (more than 17 tons on his example Titan trip) - that's going to make refuelling this extremely expensive and awkward for ISRU, since that will need processing. The cooling requirements are going to be massive as well (I forget precisely how this is modelled in High Frontier - 5 therms of cooling? 1 therm was 120MW, but I can't remember whether HF models this linearly or on a log 2)

Obviously the NSWR would fit in with a mod like DSEV. Obviously a Nertea-made advanced propulsion system pack would be unbelievable, but the chap has limited enough time as it is :)

I wouldn't expect Nertea to churn this sort of stuff by the hour. It's more of a long-term project. I'd definitely count on it being released, though, since the guy appears determined to make it into the pages of the Atomic Rockets.

28 minutes ago, autumnalequinox said:

This I like!  A super powered "far future technologies" pack.  Oh and make these things cost crazy money (like RoverDude does with Orion) that can be offset once you have some resource production set up off-world.

I'm not sure if others consider USI and Near Future to be it's own little allied thing (I call it Ultra-Stock+) vs. say KSPI but I think RoverDude covers fusion torches and warp drives already.  Seems like this could cover more exotic propulsion like fission fragment and catalyzed and maybe mass driver? :)

But since Near Future/Kerbal Atomics covers technically feasible/tested-but-not deployed hardware this stuff should definitely go into it's own category.  Maybe "Somewhat Distant but maybe-not too much Future Atomics"?  Or is that a mouthful? :P

I'd say 'Far Future Technologies' would make a good pack name. Rhymes well for the current crop's 'Near Future Technologies'.

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Featured this mod on my channel today, you've made some absolutely amazing engines for this whole thing.  Keep up the great work as I've had a lot of fun with it so far ... especially the liberator, man I love that engine.

 

 

Edited by Kottabos

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1 hour ago, Kottabos said:

Featured this mod on my channel today, you've made some absolutely amazing engines for this whole thing.  Keep up the great work as I've had a lot of fun with it so far ... especially the liberator, man I love that engine.

<video snip>

You misstated how the alternator works. The engine passively generates power like an RTG (that's the third mode in "trimodal") and the alternator is there to stop it generating power when the engine is running. It's the reverse of a normal alternator, it generates power constantly except when the engine is running.

On 6/27/2016 at 1:24 PM, Nertea said:

Yeah that's pretty much how it goes, but I'm always leery of stepping into the world of engines that are superior in every way, particularly *this* much better. What I've done progression-wise is basically like this:

[Stock KSP Content]----[All my mods]----------------------------------------------------[NSWR]

It's so far beyond anything that it really doesn't seem right to put it in the same place.

I think it would be really cool if you were to make a set of Far Future Technologies to compliment the Near Future set. I'm not sure exactly what would go in them but the things like fusion rockets, NSWRs, all the things that aren't really "near future" could work. Of course there is Interstellar for that, but personally I like your style of modelling better, and especially I like having modularity, rather than KSPI's approach of bundling everything together in one folder. If nothing else, a separate mod for the NSWR would be appropriate, I think, because some people will want the improved NTRs but find the NSWR a bit too futuristic.

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@shynung, @ruiluth, @autumnalequinox and persons:

 The main difficulty I always have when I think about planning any FFT (heh) type mods is the sheer number of fuel types that you end up with that don't share many engines. Every propulsion system tends to be highly optimized with a special fuel type or set of types, and that gets messy. I like making models and the resulting visual differentiation, and wouldn't really accept a situation where I had a bunch of visually identical tanks that could fuelswitch to every possible tank, which more or less mean that I have to model a sufficiently large set of tanks (what that number is can be quite variable) for every fuel type that I include. That can start to get scary looking. I mean what do we have? We have for futuristic fuels... in a very reduced list:

  • Antimatter - AIM, ACMF, Thermal AM (various core states)
  • Fusion fuel (D/T/He3) - thermal fusion (various core states)
  • Fusion fuel (pellets) - AIM, ICF
  • Nuclear Salt Water - NSWR
  • Lithium - MTF, MIF (already in NFP, would have to share = headache)
  • Hydrogen - Anything thermal (already in CryoTanks, split out already so not the biggest headache but still not great)

Some of those aren't too bad because they don't need to be in a lot of form factors for gameplay reasons (like AM), or perhaps because only one engine would ever use them (NSW) but it really is a lot of tank types! 

I would of course like to do it, I do have an AIM and an AMCF engine more or less modeled, but yeah... time... it takes about 3 hours modeling, 4 hours of unwrapping, 4-5 hours of texture work and 2 hours of miscellany to get a good engine model done. I don't have that much time :(.

1 hour ago, Kottabos said:

Featured this mod on my channel today, you've made some absolutely amazing engines for this whole thing.  Keep up the great work as I've had a lot of fun with it so far ... especially the liberator, man I love that engine.

Always a pleasure to watch your features on my stuff :). Glad you enjoyed it. By the way, the Neptune and Poseidon have built-in always-on generators as well (except when the engine is running).

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