Steam engines are the most basic electricity generator, available to the player at the start of the game. They produce electricity by consuming steam, using water pumped from an offshore pump that was heated to 165°C steam with boilers or to 500°C steam with heat exchangers. Steam that has a higher temperature than the maximum temperature of the steam engine (165°C) does not yield more electricity, but less steam is consumed.
Steam engines will automatically adjust their power production and steam usage based on the current demands of the electricity network. Hovering the mouse over a steam engine will display their current power production (Performance) and their possible power production (Available Performance).
Before version 0.15
Using other liquids
The steam engine can use any type of liquid to generate electricity. This can be used to get rid of unused oil-products. Just fill unusable oil products into a steam engine and it will destroy the liquids (cold liquids will be destroyed at a rate of 6.0 fluid / second). It works the same as for cold water; you don't need to warm it. If you heat the liquid before that, the hot oil will produce electrical power, just like with hot water.
By default, water is 15°C and oils are 25°C. The steam engine happens to work with water from 15°C and oils from above 25°C (a complete coincidence). An oil temperature of 25.22°C will get you about 1.3KW of power. Heating up water or oils makes no difference: heating one liter of water from 15 to 16 degrees takes just as much energy as heating one liter of oil from 25 to 26 degrees(OC). It was not tested how much energy the steam engine produces with 16°C water versus 26°C oil, but it probably does not warrant using oils instead of water.
In general you should convert the unusable oil products into useables, instead of just making electricity out of it!
- Main article: Achievements
Steam engines are directly connected to the following achievement:
- Produce more than 10 GJ energy per hour without the usage of steam engine.
- Steam is now internally a separate fluid from hot water.
- Added high graphics quality option for steam engine.
- Increased the maximum power production of steam engine from 510kW to 900kW
- Doubled the heat capacity of water from 0.1kJ per degree per liter to 0.2kJ.
- Change fluidbox height and base level of boiler, steam engine and pump to improve fluid flow.
- Made bounding box smaller.
- New graphics.
- New sounds.
- New graphics