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Tutorial / Safe, Easy, & Powerful Nuclear Reactor

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WARNING: Due to a bug in Tekkit 3.1.3, a glitch can occur that causes your nuclear reactor to crash your Tekkit and corrupt the world you are on.

WARNING: Do NOT use a Watch of Flowing Time when using a nuclear reactor, It can stop the redstone AND the cooling system from working, then kaboom.

2012-10-25 07.18.59

This design is so simple, you may be able to build it just by looking at this picture... Not recommended, though.

So you want to make a Nuclear Reactor, but you looked at the page for the Nuclear Reactor and understood slightly less than you did from your calculus book.

Never fear: Here is a tutorial explaining how to build a dead simple, powerful, completely safe, and automated Nuclear Reactor.

Some notes first:

1:You must follow these instructions precisely. Pay particularly close attention to the section "We make it safe." Even a small change could result in the reactor exploding. You will be told if something is safe to change and what would be catastrophic to change, as well as why it would be catastrophic.

2: You can not skip sections as you're reading; make sure to read the entire article. Nearly every single case of this setup "failing" has been because the player skipped, ignored, misread, or otherwise did a section wrong. There are tips throughout the entire article that can mean the difference between more power than you know what to do with and a crater where your house used to be. If you change anything, we are not responsible for your crater, it is recommended that you create a new world in creative mode to test it before actually using it.

3: If you complete this Reactor Setup, you will have 2030 EU/t at your disposal; slightly less than 4 HV Solar Arrays. While it is not necessary to use all of the power, it is recommended to get a Mass Fabricator and send the excess power to that.

4: Don't be afraid of the size of this article: The actual design is very simple.

5. Always place a World Anchor next to a reactor. Generally, the heat buildup from the Uranium will still calculate, even if the ice being pumped in isn't, so without a world anchor... Boom.

6. One last thing: This is a tutorial on how to build this particular setup, not how to craft any components or what any functions of the reactor do. If you want information like that, click on the links in the Materials section below, or go to the Nuclear Reactor page.


Items Required

Raw Materials

These are the materials required to create or produce the necessary items above (Items required)

Note: these above are the raw materials and tools, if you were on Skyblock with only these items you could build one.

The Easy Bit

The first thing you need are your two Energy Collectors and the Energy Condenser. One Mk2 Collector will also work, but it costs 8 more diamonds and 1 more glowstone. Place them wherever you want; they don't actually need to be right by the reactor, I just have them this close for the purpose of screenshots. You do, however, need at least the equivalent of two Mk1 Collectors; just one won't put out enough Ice. Also, contrary to common belief, you don't need to place a glowstone block on top of the collectors... Torches work just fine. Hold shift to place your two torches on the Collectors.

Note: If you dislike Energy Collectors, check out this alternative to power the energy condenser.

2012-08-30 09.31.21

Go ahead and place one Ice Block (created by Compressing a Snowball) in the top left box of the Condenser, so it will go ahead and start making ice.

Place your Filter directly next to your Condenser, and right click it with your Screwdriver until the large hole is facing the Condenser and the small hole is facing away (We'll get to the timer later). The filter pulls out not just exact items, but exact amounts as well, so if you only place one ice inside the filter, it will only pull one ice out each time it activates. Make sure you place a full stack inside the Filter.

Place however many Pneumatic Tubes you need to get from the Filter to where you want the Nuclear Reactor. Note: You can place a relay anywhere along the line to hold excess Ice, but it's not really necessary, unless you really don't like the Ice bouncing back and forth in the pipes. Seeing the Ice in the pipes can reassure you that everything is working and you have plenty of ice going into the reactor. You can also use a Restriction Tube leading to another Condenser, which takes the excess Ice and creates diamonds.

Now Things Will Look Nuclear

2012-08-30 09.35.12
You can't place Reactor Chambers without connecting them to a Nuclear Reactor, and you don't want to sink the Reactor into the ground (you'll see in the next section), so place any random block on the ground where you want the Reactor to be centered. Place your Nuclear Reactor on the block and break the block so your Reactor is floating one block off the ground.

If you right click the Reactor, you'll notice the GUI is awfully small. That's what the Reactor Chambers are for: Surround the Reactor on all six sides with the Chambers, and right click a Chamber. Now, you'll see that it is quite large - comparable to a double chest. The Chambers allow it to get to higher temperatures without blowing up as well as slightly increasing the cooling effects... Well, and obviously allowing you to place more uranium in the machine. More uranium = more power!... Note, do NOT put uranium in the reactor yet.

Are you getting nervous? Don't be, because now...

We Make it Safe

If you skip this section, Your reactor will likely blow up. The thermal monitor and redstone make this setup safe, and the lever helps, but is not entirely necessary.

2012-10-25 07.15.14
Before you do anything else, hold shift and place a lever directly on the Reactor Chamber, then Turn the lever ON. This will supply the reactor with redstone power, and keep it from ever generating heat and exploding.

What makes this design safe is the Thermal Monitor, the Green Screen with "500" on it, on the left side of the reactor. This wonderful device constantly checks the temperature of the reactor it's mounted on. Right clicking the Thermal Monitor yields the GUI to the bottom-right, where you can set whatever heat you want. When the reactor raises above this heat, the Thermal Monitor will automatically output a redstone signal. Like the Lever, hold shift to place the Monitor directly on the Reactor Chamber, and leave it on 500 - it's just fine for our purposes.


However, this redstone signal will NOT go into the reactor on its own. You must place some form of wiring to redirect the signal from the thermal monitor to the reactor itself. That is what the two Red Alloy Wires are for: One stone (or any) block underneath the Thermal Monitor, as pictured, and two Red Alloy Wires, exactly as pictured, and the redstone signal will be sent into the reactor. Use the red alloy wires instead of traditional redstone because, in the event of surprised water, the wires won't be washed away. Water breaks traditional redstone, so if your coolant system lags, glitches, or messes up in any way (which its apt to do if you're on any server) the reactor will blow up.

One last thing: If your server allows it, place a World Anchor or a Dimensional Anchor near the reactor. Typically, if the chunk is unloaded, the heat generation will still calculate, but the filter and condenser will not, so you're generating heat but no cooling. As you can imagine, this is a bad thing. Anchors keep the chunk loaded at all times, preventing this from happening.

Starting the Machine


We're almost done - now it's time to get everything going. Take your 47 Uranium Cells and 7 stacks of ice from the Energy Condenser and place them inside the Reactor in the pattern shown to the right. The two Uranium Cells in the bottom can be anywhere on the bottom row, but they usually must be separated. If they are placed directly next to each other and not against an edge, your reactor will generate 2050 EU/t, which is too much even for HV cable (which can only take up to 2048 EU/t). Alternatively, you can place both uranium all the way to the left or right, but not next to each other. This will generate roughly 2047 EU/t. This is the absolute max a reactor can be pushed to, but if you want it to look pretty and symmetrical, what's 7 more EU/t out of over 2000? Also, if the ice blocks are anywhere other than there on the bottom or in the same pattern across the top, the reactor will not put out the full 2040 EU/t. Placement is very important in a Nuclear Reactor.

If you wish to experiement with other internal designs, check out this link to see what various components do.

Note: The Uranium will not have the green bar at the bottom, as seen in the picture, until you turn it on.

2012-10-19 23.00.05

Also: So long as your lever is on, the Uranium will not do anything. No power or heat will be generated yet. If your lever is not on, but you have placed the Thermal Monitor as instructed, you are also still safe. Without either, your reactor will blow up in less than ten seconds.

Take your Timer and place it next to the Filter as seen to the right. It can really be set to any time you like, but I put it on 8 seconds, as that's how long it takes two Mk1 Collectors to make a full stack of Ice. The timer will start the Filter pumping Ice, and now, we're pretty much set!

All you have to do now, is flip the lever and turn the Reactor on. If you've done something wrong, the Thermal Monitor will shut it off before anything happens. If you've done something very wrong, and it's still building up heat, you'll start to see little black smoke particles. This can occasionally happen at very low temperatures, so watch it for a minute or so. If you see little flames coming out of the top of the Chambers, immediately flip the lever to switch the reactor off, and recheck everything.

What to Do with All This Power?

2012-10-25 07.17.20

Presumably, until now, all you've used were some Solar arrays, maybe a Geothermal Generator, or maybe even a really clever Water Mill setup. But now you're dealing with extreme voltage, which is anything above high voltage (512 EU/t). The only thing that can stand up to this beast is HV cable. I would recommend just one HV cable block and immediately sending it into a HV transformer. HV Cable loses power very quickly, so this way you can use Glass Fibre A.S.A.P and stop losing your power.

WARNING: Make absolute certain you place the HV transformer facing the correct direction, with the HV cable attached to the side with THREE dots, not one (in default textures). If it is facing the wrong direction, so the 2040+ EU/t from the reactor goes into the low voltage side of the transformer, it will immediately explode with no warning, damaging your setup and likely resulting in a meltdown.

As mentioned above, now would be a good time to invest in a Mass Fabricator. This much power will raise the percentage in a Mass Fabricator by almost 4 points each second. That's roughly 25 seconds per UU-Matter, and roughly 16 minutes for a stack of it. You can also use an Oil Fabricator - set up correctly it creates more EMC per EU than using UU-Matter, even if you have a Scrap factory to supply it with.

Alternatively, if you don't have anything to actually use all of this power, you can hook it to an MFSU and click the button in the upper right corner of the MFSU's GUI until it says "emit if full." This will cause the MFSU to emit redstone whenever it's completely full and cannot accept more power. Send this redstone signal directly to the reactor and it will automatically shut down whenever your MFSU is full, so your uranium cells aren't wasted.

The Teleporter and the Terraformer also use enormous amounts of EU, you can create a literal castle made entirely out of Forcefields, or you can hook an Energy Link to the Reactor and send all the power to a dozen Quarrys and Refineries all at once.

The power is in your hands now. Have fun.

Bugs and Errors 

  • ==In Tekkit 3.1.3, A glitch can occur that causes your nuclear reactor to crash your Tekkit and corrupt the world you were on. to prevent this, place the thermal monitor on it by holding down sneak and clicking.==

Video tutorial

Are you confused, and learn better visually from tutorials or videos? Check out these videos for further information. Any of these links can help you.

Start a Discussion Discussions about Tutorial / Safe, Easy, & Powerful Nuclear Reactor

  • Reactor not generating any power.

    8 messages
    • Same for mine and my friend's reactor. Everything is hooked up like in the video except no power is being sent to the MFSU. I've tr...
    • Are you sure the mfsu is pointing the right way, i've made that mistake lots of times myself.
  • World Name Bug

    • If you name a world Nuke it wont work it just freezes at Nu glitch?

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