Vacuum Reactor

From GT New Horizons
Potential TPS issues - could meltdown!

At this time there is no best way to make a vacuum nuke that doesn't lag - single player should be fine, but on thermos you may get issues. Have multiple failsafes.

Vacuum Reactors

Vacuum Reactor is a IC2 Nuclear Reactor cooled with coolant cells instead of heat vents, using a Vacuum Freezer to recycle the cells. Due to active cooling it produces energy much faster than heat-balanced schemes. Sample setups can be found here, or here.

The setup for your vacuum nuke must do the following, in order:

  1. Detect when coolant cells are getting too hot.
  2. Shut the reactor down.
  3. Extract the hot coolant cells.
  4. Put in fresh ones.
  5. Turn the reactor back on.

Note that you MUST turn the reactor off to replace coolant cells- if you just pull them out and replace them fast it'll usually get done before the reactor gets any heat, but usually doesn't cut it when the alternative is your base exploding.

You may also want automated fuel replacement. If you want to do this, make sure your automation is set up to only replace fuel OR coolant and never both at the same time, or they'll get mixed up, which could result in a very large crater if you're unlucky.

Fully automated reactors

Design #1: Tally Box

Fully automated vacuum reactor with remote control circuit

A design that uses a tally box and remote comparator to control fuel rod extraction and insertion. The reactor and freezer is able to fit within a 3x3x6 area and the remote control circuit is also 3x3x6. The control circuit can be anywhere within 20 blocks of the reactor

The tally box detects if there is the proper amount of rods in the reactor and disables the reactor and coolant refill if there isn't.

When rods get depleted, the tally box detects that and shuts the reactor down until the rods are replaced. Also includes failsafe for heat gain. May occasionally need to be maintained.

Full build tutorial can be found here


1) The tally box can also be directly connected to the reactor, if one desires a local set-up only. This simplifies the build somewhat as the tally box output is only used to control the rod and coolant replacements

Reactor side conduit settings

2) The filter is the most fiddly and also critical component in these builds. There is a section below detailing the relevant calculations. An alternative to make the solution universal and safer, is to not use the filter at all and replace it with an ender io item conduit.

The conduit, on the extract side, needs to be outfitted with an "Item Conduit Speed Downgrade" and an "Advanced Item Filter". It will also need to be connected to the relevant redstone signal to turn it on and off. the "Insulated Redstone Conduit" can be used for this, but other redstone solutions should work. As with all redstone around a reactor, be sure the redstone doesn't accidentally turn on the reactor. Use insulated solutions where appropriate.

Aside from filtering the item to be extracted, the advanced item filter can be set to "75% damaged or more" as an extraction condition. The benefit of using this solution is that this works with any type of coolant cell without calculation and without the risk of skipping over the critical extraction check. A downside is that you can only effectively use 75% of the coolant capacity of the cell. This can be easily mitigated by using the 180k versions of the coolant cells instead of the regular 60k cells.

The speed downgrade is important to make sure only 1 cell will ever be extracted in a single tick!

Design #2: IC Chip

Here we will build a reactor that will supply both the fuel and the coolant automatically, using a IC Chip from Project Red.

Creating the blueprint
Detailed first half
Detailed second half

NOTE: An external timer is needed for the controller to function. if you don't want an external timer you will have to add a state cell in the blueprint (and replace the white wire with lime wire) as shown below WARNING: Do not place a timer in the blueprint or it can cause your game to crash!

State cell and repeater to replace external timer

Red = Disabled input/output

Green = Output

Blue = Input

I = Set on input O = Set on output A = Set on analog input

1 not-gate
2 and-gate
3 or-gate
4 rs-latch (make sure it looks like as shown in the image)
5 repeater has to be set on 4/8 ticks
O1 output to enable/disable the reactor "high=on"
O2 to enable/disable coolant cell loop "high=on"
O3 to enable/disable fuel replacer "high=on"
O4 to connect to the input of external timer
I1 reads the energy reader on the transformer that is set on "normal average electrical input"
I2 input to turn off/on reactor
I3 connect to the output of the external timer
I4 reset swich resets circuit "high=reset"

analog input set on 0x0

A1 analog input set on 0xF
ABF To decide how full the coolant buffer has to be to allow the reactor to run
ABO To decide how empty the coolant buffer has to be to stop the reactor from running
AEF To decide how full the energy buffer has to be to stop the reactor from running
AEO To decide how empty the energy buffer has to be to allow the reactor to run
checking if it works

If you use external timer place one where the state cell is placed(don't forget to remove it).

Enable I2 and disable I1 and both analog inputs are set on A0. The timer should now tick.

Tis is what should happen after each timer tick.

1 O3 turns off
2 O2 turns off

O1 turns on

4 O1 turns off
5 O2 turns on
6 O3 turns on

If you don't enable I1 after the last tick it will restart the cycle.

Additional information

The leftmost repeater connected with 2 blue wires has to be set on with a bigger delay.

For the inputs and outputs you don't have to use the colors as shown in the blueprint.

For ABF and ABO: If no redstone signal is applied it will allow the reactor to run.

The item detector that is used to connect it has to be set on inverted calculating the redstone signal compared to how many cells there are in the buffer R = strength of redstone (always rounds up so 1.111 = 2), where c = the amount of coolant cells in the buffer (For example, if you want the nuke to stop running when there are less than 10 cells in the buffer so for safety we will set the ABO to 0x9. Now you want it to enable the reactor when you have 20 cells in the buffer: so you set the ABF to 0x4.

If you use the buffer reader and you do not completely fill it you will need to apply a full redstone signal to it or else it will not work.

For the battery buffer the you need to put the cover on normal instead of inverted.

When placing the IC down you need to first reset it for it to work.

The time the timer/state cell has to be set on has to be longer then the time it takes to replace all the fuel cells or else it will wrongly refuel your reactor and a minimum time of 2 seconds

if you want to force a energy buffer to charge fully or too little coolant in buffer you can apply a max redstone signal to the input

Setting up reactor
a controller fully hooked up to a reactor
1 the cable to turn the reactor on/off
2 the item detector set on inverted to read how many items is in the reactor
3 the cabel to turn the coolant feet on/off
4 energy detector on transformer set on normal electrical input to detect if reactor is producing energy
5 energy detector do read the battery buffer set on normal electrical storage(including batteries)
6 the wire to turn the fuel replacement on/off
7 the swich to allow the reactor to turn on
8 the external timer because they cause a crash if in the blueprint. If you put a state cell in the blue print you wont need to place this timer
9 the reset swich to reset the controller

Calculating vacuum freezers

A single vacuum freezer can only cool a certain number of cells so you have to calculate how many vacuum freezers you will need to cool the reactor. Don't forget to account for overclocking the vacuum freezer.

Cell extraction temperature

A filter is very precise when to extract cells: if the heat is 1 more than set in the filter, it will not extract, so to calculate a temperature you can extract the cell at:

Where He = The temperature you want to extract the cell at and Hg is the heat the cell gains in a single reactor tick - If you get a round number that means it is a valid value. Otherwise the cell will never get extracted. 

Example: Because the result is not an integer we have to use a different value, for example Which is a valid temperature to extract at.

Coolant cell temperature gain values:

0 sides touching 1 sides touching 2 sides touching 3 sides touching
thorium 24 40 60 84
all the others 96 160 240 336

Some heat values you can use if only 1 fuel rod touches the cell, for example Thorium at 59640, while for everything else 57120 is valid.

Heat processing of vacuum freezer

To calculate how much heat a single vacuum freezer can process per second we can use the formula: where Ht is total heat capacity of the cell and He is the temperature the cell is extracted at from the reactor.

Example: thus a single MV vacuum freezer has a cooling rate of 1904 heat/s.

Required amount of vacuum freezers

For the total amount of vacuum freezers you need the formula is where Thg is the total amount of heat the reactor produces per second in the reactor planner, and Vcr is the amount a single vacuum freezer cools per second, given by the above formula.

Example: Lets say we have an uranium reactor that produces 7296 heat/s and has a Vcr of 1904, thus so too cool the reactor you need 4 MV, 2HV or 1 EV Vacuum Freezers.