Hey guys, I've run into a frustrating issue regarding the 5^3 fluid-cooled nuclear reactor; it appears to overheat and melt parts of the pressure vessel/hull, even though the setup I'm running should be quite stable. I haven't stared at it to see it overheat, however periodically I'll go down to check on the reactor and see it in EU mode (shouldn't be) and a random piece of the reactor hull missing (hence why it's in EU mode); I can only assume from this observation that something is stopping the coolant from cooling and returning to the reactor via the Liquid Heat Converters, thus forcing the core temp up until part of the reactor hull melts away.
So setup is the 5x5x5 (5^3) nuclear reactor in fluid cooling mode, with the following configuration (using Mauvecloud's IC2x reactor planner)
The planner shows that the internal configuration is quite stable, though the heat distribution changes somewhat over different simulations. From the reactor itself I've just got a simple Stirling generator setup converting the ~800Hu/s to ~400Eu/t. The 9 fluid ports, LHEs and Stirlings required are all grouped on the top of the reactor in a 3x3 format. I can take/grab pictures if visual detail is needed to help me troubleshoot.
At present I've got it running my factory so that if none of the machines are running and the storage unit (an MFE) fills up, the MFE is in empty/partially full redstone mode, with redstone connecting from the MFE to a lamp adjacent to the reactor redstone port which, once drained slightly, will turn on the reactor and attempt to fill the MFE back to full, before the MFE deactivates and waits to be drained enough to turn the redstone signal on again. I've also got luminators running off of a batbox filled directly from the rearward stirling generators ('rearward' being the side of the reactor opposite the side with the access hatch). Again, i can grab pictures if verbal descriptions are less than helpful.
If I were to hazard a guess as to the issue, (assuming all other things working) I'd say the problem lies in the storage unit setup, specifically how I'm activating the reactor when the factory is effectively 'idle'; there are some units (e.g. Thermal Centrifuges, Heat Generators for the Blast Furnace) that constantly require a trickle of energy; this continuously drains the MFE, but not quickly enough to continue the redstone signal before the reactor fills again, thus a sort of toggled effect takes place within the reactor. I'm not sure how this would adversely affect the reactor stop it from being cooled, as even if the MFE were completely filled, I was under the impression that the Stirling generators would have enough of an internal buffer to stop the reactor effectively 'backing up' and stopping coolant to run.
At this point I think the easiest solution would be to just install Nuclear Control and install a failsafe switch to shut the reactor off if and when the core temp reaches intolerable levels (what's melting point these days, 50%?), but I'd like to solve the problem without installing more mods if I can help it. (I'm using a homebrew modpack at present, quite tiny and trying to keep it that way.)
If anyone needs further info (or aforementioned pics of the Nuke setup), just ask. Any and all help, assistance and advice is greatly appreciated.