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Tutorial / Combustion Engine Power Plant

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You've found an Oil well and started pumping Oil into tanks. You've set up a working Refinery and it's making Fuel. And maybe you're making way more Fuel than is being used by your Engines powering that Refinery and Quarry. It's time to put all that spare Fuel to good use by powering your factory.
Power plant06

Completed Power Plant using Combustion Engine Clock to regulate Engine temperature.

This is a power plant setup that will allow Combustions Engines to make power that is saved in a chain of energy storage units which will automatically turn the power plant on and off as energy is needed. It also uses the Combustion Engine Clock to keep the Engines from exploding and eliminates the need for all the water pumps, pipes and Redstone or Steam Engines to cool off the Combustion Engines.

Getting Started

This system is designed to use two or more Batboxes, MFEs or MFSUs or a combination, chained together. The power comes in from a Teleport Pipe at one end and out through cables leading to your machines on the other side. The first and last storage units are set to emit a Redstone signal when they are full and connected to Red Alloy Wires which act as the inputs to the Switch Circuit. The Switch Circuit requires only four Logic Gates, a Wireless Transmitter and Wireless Receiver. The energy storage units and the circuitry can all be placed under the floor and covered up.

The power plant itself is placed remotely, possibly near your Oil Refinery and Fuel tanks. Combustion Engines are placed side-by-side and all direct power into a line of Conductive Pipe which is terminated by the Power Teleport Pipe connected to your factory.

This tutorial will demonstrate a power plant using two MFSUs and eight Combustions Engines. If using 1-4 Engines then Batboxes can be used, 4-7 engines use MFEs, and 8 or more engines use MFSUs. This is just a guideline, the amount of Engines and Energy Storage Units you use depends on your own needs and materials. Everything else is the same. If using more than 12 Engines, the Engine Generator HV is recommended in place of the MV.

Materials

MFSU 2
Engine Generator MV 1
MV Transformer 1
LV Transformer 1
Combustion Engine 8
Power Teleport Pipe 2
Golden Conductive Pipe 2
Wooden Conductive Pipe 3
Wooden Waterproof Pipe 1
Stone Waterproof Pipe 15 +
Redstone Engine 1
Red Alloy Wire 36
Timer 2
AND Gate 1
NOR Gate 1
RS Latch 2
Null Cell 1
Wireless Transmitter 1
Wireless Receiver 1
Redstone Torch 1
Lever 1
Cover Strip 5

Let's Build

Start in your base or factory and decide where you want your Energy Storage
Power plant01

Place the Transformers close to your machines, add the MFSUs, Engine Generator and pipes. The golden pipe is optional.

Units to be. If you want them hidden, they will be placed two blocks below your machines. Dig out your floor in an 11 x 5 area and then dig two more blocks down so that you have a basement just high enough to stand in. The MFSUs and Transformers will be at one end of the 11 x 5 and one block off the basement floor. Double-check the alignment of the inputs and outputs of the MFSUs and Transformers. Be sure to place a cable between the Transformer and Energy Storage Unit, otherwise the Redstone signal will reverse power output from the Transformer.

Wiring the Switch Circuit

Place Red Alloy Wire on each MFSU, on the block below and two blocks in front. Use four Cover Strips to separate the wires by placing them in between the wires, place the last Strip at a right angle to the last one (see image at right).

Begin placing the Logic Gates and wiring as shown in the images. Remember to face away
Power plant02

Layout of the Switch Circuit for the Power Plant.

from the MFSUs when placing so that the outputs are all in the right direction. The Null Cell is closest to the MFSUs and is just used to allow the wires to cross over without connecting. The AND Gate is on the left side and the NOR Gate is on the right. The RS Latch is further up in the center. Finally, the Wireless Transmitter is placed at the very end, set the frequency to whatever you choose. Use the Screwdriver to disable the left input on the AND Gate and the right input on the NOR Gate. Right-clicking will rotate the Gates and SHIFT-Right-Click will toggle the inputs. The image shows another wire comng from the Latch output, this is an optional indicator light placed in the floor and connected to a simple Not Gate.
Power plant03

The output wires from the MFSUs must not touch each other. Use the Null Cell to cross them over.

Power plant04

The signal wires from the MFSUs go to each gate, the output of each gate goes to the RS Latch.

Circuit Explained

We want the power plant to shut off when the MFSUs are full and to turn back on when they are empty. They will both emit a Redstone signal when they are full. The AND Gate will emit a signal when it gets a signal from both the MFSUs, this ensures the power plant won't shut off after the first MFSU is full. The AND Gate signal toggles the RS Latch to the on position. The NOR gate emits a signal when both MFSU signals are off. This signal toggles the RS Latch to the off position. The RS Latch is connected to the Transmitter and the Receiver is connected to the Combustion Engine Clock at the power plant. The Engine Clock is designed to turn off when it receives a signal and on when the signal is off. In other words, it does the opposite.

Power Plant

Begin by placing a Wooden Conductive Pipe at least 5 blocks from your Fuel Tanks. Alternate the Wooden Pipes and Golden Pipes in a row so that the Wooden Pipes are on the ends. Now, place Combustion Engines next to the Wooden Pipes, three on each end and two in the middle. Connect the Teleport Pipe to a Golden Pipe anywhere between two of the Engines, but NOT above the Conductive Pipe (the image is incorrect). This is where the Fuel lines go.

This system uses the Combustion Engine Clock that will keep the Engine temperature steady so that a water
Power plant05

Red Alloy Wire connecting the Engine Clock to all the Engines.

cooling system is not required. Place Red Alloy Wire around the perimeter of the Engines as shown in the image. Place one more wire coming out from the perimeter and while facing the Engines, place the second RS Latch. Place a Timer on each side of the RS Latch. Open the GUI for the right Timer (when facing the Engines) and set it for 1 second. Open the GUI for the left Timer and set it for 0.4 seconds. Place the Wireless Receiver next to the left Timer and set it to the same frequency as the Transmitter.

Place a Wooden Waterproof Pipe on the Fuel Tank and a Redstone Engine on that. Connect the Stone Waterproof Pipes between Wooden Pipe and the Engines. Place a lever next to the Redstone Engine and turn it on to start filling the Combustion Engines with Fuel.

It will take a short while until all the Engines have at least enough Fuel to start operating. When that happens, place a Redstone Torch next to the right Timer and all the Engines will begin running. Allow them to warm up to the Orange level. This will take 8-9 minutes. When they reach Orange, remove the Redstone Torch. The Combustion Engine Clock will take it from there. By this time the Engines are full of Fuel so you can turn the Redstone Engine off. It will take about 5 hours of constant operation for the Engines to use all their fuel.

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