Food to Power

Started by chaotix14, November 08, 2013, 02:53:52 PM

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In the current build it is very common to run into power problems. In future builds I am sure we will get more methods(the traders hint towards nuclear fission), but as is I'd like to trow up an idea.

In my playthroughs I've found that it can be quite easy to mass up on food, now while it is a good resource to have loads stockpiled in case of a blight or for trading purposes, it could also be used to power the base.
I am not talking about a simple furnace where you shovel the food in, but a more refined machine, a bio-ethanol aggregate. Using bio-ethanol these power generators create power in a quite simple way, maybe even allowing them to continue working during a solar flare(it's a dynamo attached to a car engine, which in real life is basically immune to the effects of a solar flare) and powering the less sensitive equipment(like lighting, a solar flare doesn't really do much to a tungsten wire, nor to power cables). As a power source they would most likely be more effective(even including the power costs of the proccessing of the foodstuffs) than the solar and geothermal generators, with the drawbacks being the ammounts of food required and the proccess of making the bio-ethanol.(which costs time, space and manpower)

The process from raw foodstuffs to power is quite simple, but not one you could set up from the get go. he raw foodstuffs are taken out of the stockpile and brought to fermenting vats. After some time in the fermenting vats you get fermented foodstuffs, this can then be filtered into slurry(the solids, usable as fertilizer or animal fodder) and alcoholic brew(could also be used to serve a bars, maybe). The alcoholic brew then goes to a distillery which turns the alcoholic brew into bio-ethanol for the aggregates.

The fermenting vats would require power to create a nice temperature for the micro-organisms to ferment the foodstuffs. Their cycle time could reduced through research upgrades. The filetering process could be manual, requiring a colonist to perform the action at a filter of some discription.(maybe something for the crafting skill) and the distillery would take a lot of power to heat up the brew and turn it into bio-ethanol. Of which again the cycle time could be reduced.

TLDR: A straightforward production chain to turn foodstuffs into power.