Soo..... Lets just say I spent a long time making a project that I thought would be the future of "CASUC" reactors in 1.3.
The Idea has been thought of ever since IC2 for 1.3 came out, but I was only convinced to make it after what Talonius stated in his post HERE.
In short, I spent most of my time trying to figure out how to implement the different parts without Redpower, as it is not updated for 1.3 yet....
So here is my solution: (If you just want to see my numbers and efficiency calculations, and Thoughts on the matter, skip to right before the last image.)
1. My reactor setup. (note that we could go much more powerful than this, But since it was easier to not go past 2048 EU/t because of cable limitations, and for a reason I explain elsewhere, I went with this design.)
2040 EU/t (before loss)
also, note that this design puts 2 LZH's next to each cell. This gives me a bit of fail-safe in case a new LZH doesn't come in fast enough, that it won't start heating up and exploding imediently.
Next, I used a simple Logistic pipes setup to automatically extract any LZH's that had ran out, since logistics pipes honors data values, this worked perfectly.
My computer was having some issues with a large setup of logistics pipes, so I couldn't use them for the rest of the project, as they were VERY unreliable in terms of speed, so I used a sort of buffer to transfer the items to normal BC pipes, to transport to the cooling room.
Then, the cooling room. the hard part. In the cooling room, there were three(3) main parts to the process. First, all broken LZH's come through the wall into a storage chest that is used as a buffer. This is so that in case the reactor goes through many LZH's faster than we can refill them, it doesn't mess up our refilling process.
As items are pumped out of the chest by the BC gate, several things happen. First, the gate is an and gate, that is set up so that it will not pump out a new LZH until the old one is completely past it, and secondly, it sends a signal down the red pipe wire to a separate part of the machine to send 3 lapiz to craft.
Next, the LZH, and the three lapiz arive at the auto crafting table, are crafted, and sent back on their way to a buffer right behind the reactor.
Here, I once again used BC gates. This is the place where I most wished I had Redpower (besides cobble/scrap generation.) So instead, we have a complex series of gates that basically pumps a full LZH into the reactor if and only if:
1. The reactor has empty space.
2. There is not currently a LZH in the pipe
3. There is a LZH in the chest to insert.
However, this is not reliable, and sometimes pumps several, even though there is only space for one in the reactor. Hence, I placed obsidian pipes to catch the overflow, and put it back into the chest.
I will skip over cobble generation to be used to make scrap, as I have not actually implemented this. I will, once RP is out, be using something like this:
http://www.13-thirtyseven.com/assets/img/cobble%20gen.png using RB block breakers.
but for now, all the methods of cobble generation won't fit nicely on my wall, so I just spawned scrap for these tests.
and now... for the Lapiz generation.
Here, I used more BC gates (prefer a lot of RP's stuff, but again, that isn't out yet.) to control the flow of scrap, and prevent inefficiencies.
Firstly, the UU-generators are set up to only generate when there is some item in them, using the BC gates. As UU is pulled out as soon as it is generated, this means it will only be generating whenever scrap is present inside them.
I have gates set up to only pump scrap when:
1. the lapiz storage is not full.
2. There is scrap inside the scrap buffer.
3. There is room for the Scrap inside of the UU-gen.
then it generates UU, and then pumpes it into the autocrafting table, and them puts the lapiz into the lapiz buffer.
You will notice that the lapiz buffer has 3 pipes connected to it. Each one of these will pump one lapiz out of the chest for each empty LZH brought in to be refilled.
Now, the big point. Results:
So Talonius pointed out the following math:
"...a simple design with one LZH-Condenser next to a Quad uranium cell."
You get 12,000,000 EU
The cost to remake the lapis: 1,905,778 EU
The cost to remake the copper plates / tin cells used in the quad uranium cell: 544,700 EU
Profit!: 9,549,522 EU
So thats around 80% efficiency, not bad at all, and you could probably come up with a design using single uranium cells, we can get almost 85%, so not all that bad, considering how much EU/t we could still be making.
So here were my Real-world, actually tested results:
2040 EU/t (before loss)
100,888,576 EU created in one full cycle
26,240,148 EU used to regenerate the Lapiz during that cycle.
So I got Less than 75% Efficiency.
that being said, there are a few optimizations / things I would like to point out before everyone disregards these kinds of reactors.
1. All EU readings were AFTER LOSS. And I was not very safe on loss at all. I used HV cable from the reactor to the MFSU's and glass fiber cable everywhere else. With more careful wiring, much more EU could be produced.
After calculating what my loss should be by examining my cable connections, I can account for where about 4 million power was lost via bad cabling habits. However, that still leaves us with barely higher than 75% efficiency.
2. I noticed that LZH's do not refill evenly. The WIKI (link) lists that a LZH can store 100k heat, while each lapiz repairs 40k of that.
Therefore, the first 2 lapiz's give us 80k heat, while the third one is being half wasted, and only repairing 20k heat.
We could never repair them up to full, and be forced to replace them more often as a result, but we would then use roughly 20% less energy to refill the LZH's, saving us about 5.2 Million EU in lapiz regeneration in this example, bringing us down to only about 20% total EU loss.
3. Heat (and therefore EU required to regenerate goes up exponentially as you pack Uranium cells closer together, and as it stands currently (whatever it is about the quad uranium cell lifetime bug, could someone please confirm it is a bug?) I think we begin to lose efficiency as we pack cells closer together. (and therefor make more power per tick)
Overall, Assuming the Quad uranium cell lifetime glitch is a bug, and will be fixed, this is a VERY viable layout.
However, with the high losses I had in this experiment, and with the bug, It is only semi effective, netting us about 1400 EU/t with the layout I was using, after using UU to refill all related components.