Engineering, Fail safes, lower power engines and Electrical routing

So here’s something I’ve noticed about all the reactor and engine options for the station, in their minimum output configurations, they can effectively keep the station always running with just enough output to not have the primary station SMES’ run dry.

while that isn’t bad per se, it is kinda boring, while also opening the round the task that often scares off players from engineering, the unstable reactor core with no fail safes what so ever.

And these things that I’ve noted that brought me to write this thread.

You want me to run this with NO FAILSAFES?

The SM, Singulo and Tesla reactors all are power sources that have a very ugly failure state, in every case the engineering section is destroyed entirely when these things go critical and with the Tesla and LORD SINGULOTH, I’m sure we’re all aware of the fact that they don’t stop with just blowing up once.

In the world of engineering, when dealing with such potentially destructive forces, I shouldn’t have to tell you that having no fail safes would get you lynched as fast as if the coder bus found out you’ve been making copy-pasta spaghetti code. yet here we are.

giving engineering the means or tools in game to produce MEANINGFUL fail safes, such as the shard ejection system on Corg would make the job far less stressful and far more welcoming to players inexperienced in reactor operation.

The first thing that comes to mind is perhaps a direct Vent to space floor option. We already have floors that show off space and catwalks that do not seal off an area from space. Now all we need is a floor that can be wired up to a button to just toggle between being a sealed and unsealed floor, for quick venting of all that crazy plasma fire that happened.

Junction boxes, energy routing and rationing.

Now one thing you’ll find in every industrial work place is fuckoff big fuse boxes all over the damn place with one BIGMOTHA-FUCKA that has like 20 or more fuses with afew hundred if not thousand kilowatts going through it at all times. given that this is the range you find in the station’s power grid on the regular, my question is why don’t we have them? this would make for an interesting additon for a number of reasons, of which I will list off now:

  1. power management. say for example a bunch of additions were made such as more Borgs, a BSA, some anti breach shielding, some more stasis beds and sleepers, a new more lavish bar, those sorts of things, what if the basic SM set up or solars (or something else, keep this in mind for later), isn’t enough to fufill the full station’s needs in terms of power, ergo less power can be diverted around the station at once. Boom now you have a box at a key point in the wiring of maint to selectively shut off power to the sections of the station it supplies to.
  2. Damage diagnosis. it’s a pain in the ass to diagnose what wire has been chewed where when one department reports a power outage, having a junction box that notes what APCs are connected to it would really speed things up. Either something is broken after the box, which you then check or it’s broken before the box, which you’d learn pretty quickly after checking the box, wiring repair made less tedious.
  3. Targeted Sabotage. Now boxes like described would also be perfect as centralized points of sabotage. maybe you want to be quick? just flick a switch (with proper access maybe?) and suddenly a department will be complaining their APCs aren’t charging. Maybe flip ALL the switches and now a whole section of the station stops receiving power. Plant a C4 and all of a sudden now the engineering department has to rebuild the fuckin box or rewire the system! It’d just another interesting interaction and tactical choice for the traitors out there looking to cause some indirect mayhem.

I will be expanding this further and bumping it later, in the mean time feel free to discuss.


My only objection to this is making the engines brain dead easy to save makes incompetent engineers. A button that does what most engineers concider a last resort takes fun out of saving the sm.

A better idea would be like a 1 time use cooling reaction for the sm. Either to buy time or reverse a fire. Say like a frost oil dispenser. You can buy recharipacks from cargo or make some at chem or xenobio.

There shouldnt be an idiot proofing button. Scramming reactors isn’t the end all be all. It’s an emergency measure to save millions of lives and hopefully millions of dollars.

Fair, but get this.

traitor s.c.r.a.m.

Also at a second point cause you mentioned it. Venting a sm is dangerous too. No gas to cool sm. Sm keeps taking damage. A tator can press the vent button then destroy it and suddenly the sm is perma bonned lest someone is smart enough to rcd the floors and rebuild em.

Redundant buttons and A.I. intervention are both applicable to this.

That just seems like stop gap solutions. The ai one makes sense but extra buttons for the same thing?

Redundancy is a legitimate solution, especially in safety.
How do ensure something is kept stable? use multiple supports.
How do you ensure something has been considered thoroughly? get multiple people.
How do you ensure more damage? fire more boolets.

On heavy steel rollers theres like 4 ways to shut them off.
1st is the same switch you used to turn it on.
2nd is the big red button labelled “EMERGENCY STOP”
3rd is the big red tunable switch labeled “PRIMARY POWER SWITCH”
the 4th on the really good ones is a taught wire around the machine hooked up to an emergency stop and break system that enables if you lean on it, say because it gone done pulled your arm in.

Your right. Most things have heavy redundancy. But
The sm is experimental power on an experimental station by a company with little to no worker safety care. If they really cared the walls of the station would be double hulled and the ai would have a kill switch in command. Also there wouldn’t be a nuke in it!

The nuke is a fail safe.

A military tactical fail safe, intended for asset denial and neutralization of serious threats like blobs and xenos and shitshows that they don’t want to deal with long term

but yes I see your logic about the whole “don’t care about safety” lore wise.

This mans never made filter bypass valves and it shows.

Filter clogged? Open the bypass valve. Ideally this is one valve for the harvesting filter and one that allows gas heading to the first exhaust filter to go straight back to coolant. Another valve to bridge exhaust input to the exhaust vent is also useful.

Bonus points if you make them usable by AI and tell the AI about it.

Super cooled N2 also might work as a safeguard to cool the SM quickly, just make sure you have something set to immediately start dumping gas into space to avoid too many moles in SM.

As for Singulo? A handful of BoHs The clown and/or the CE on standby to sacrifice is a good safeguard.

Tesla? Well… Uh… Just make sure everyone is spaceproofed and wearing insuls. Sure the station might die, but that doesn’t mean the crew has to. Just… stay away from electronics to avoid the explosions.

BWAMP, I have updated THIS PAGE!

I’m not exactly sure what are you trying to say here.
You seem to complain about terrifying and complex task ahead of engineers each round that scares less experienced players off but you also point out boredom.

Setting up the SM is not a hard task. We’re not running a RBMK simulator in which even opening valves before and after pumps to allow proper head pressure at start has to be done in proper order.

I taught multiple people how to set the engine up (in fact I have stayed on this server during Ssethtide teaching other newbies almost every round for 2 or 3 weeks straight after I learned for myself) and every single person agreed that setting up and running the SM is a straightforward operation, there is a weird perception about its complexity which simply has nothing to do with reality.

But yes, there is a boredom factor in it all.
SM is a pretty robust engine which won’t delam on its own, once it is set it will continue to work-we added surges to spice things up but they didn’t change anything since they are too weak to affect basically any engine setup beside maybe the most unstable one that is already running on the verge of delamination. If SM is actually delaming it may be easily fixed. Even purposeful sabotages usually offer plenty of time for reaction and there is a range of options from simply fixing the loop and waiting it out or if integrity is lower modifying loop on the fly to accommodate better cooling, through flushing the loop with fresh gas while dropping hot one into space to, mentioned by you, floor removal, which I personally treat closer to mechanic abuse because of how effective it is and only use it in dire situations.

And there are plenty of ways to improve SM safety and functionality available right now, with existing devices and mechanics. For example mentioned by others filter bypasses


You are able to easily create system that exposes the chamber to vacuum of space-You could RCD the floor and have it covered with directional glass so it would automatically break during fire or have airlock or shutter placed on top of said hole which would allow you to open it remotely


If breach in a chamber floor is not the most aesthetic solution then you could for example place a passive vent under the crystal and lead it to injector in space, connection between them could be controlled with manual valve or pressure/temperature gate.

If yo are actually interested and willing to experiment there’s plenty of possibilities. You could use temperature gates to stop hot gas from cycling and with help of pressure gate automatically inject cold gas to refill the loop. You could even make the setup which reacts to specific gas, for example to automatically trigger exposing chamber to space once nitryl is detected, which occurs in fires above 22,000 K if my memory serves, which indeed is a quite bad delamination. You could achieve it by filtering nitryl from the loop and directing it to chamber like one on the picture below-gas pushes on the object inside containment which passes by IR sensor and could be used to signal airlock or pulse siphoning wire in air alarm etc


There is really plenty of fun system and mechanisms you could design and build in no time, or for more ambitious ones while engine is already running. Heck, I was talking all about removing hot gas but there are things like emitters which beam could be blocked with remotely controlled or even automatized airlock. Beside safety solutions you could have a system that allows you to manage gas composition better-for example by removing CO2 out of the loop only to re-add it in specific proportion to N2 or solution that brings SM waste close to room temperature-allowing you to collect all gases produced by the engine and do it with use of station filtration and storage system without affecting the temperature of tanks in a long run


Frankly, in most cases your creativity is the limit.

I don’t really understand what are you trying to suggest here. If you want more safety features to by mapped and present by default I can’t agree with it. It is already too easy to set up, run and fix delaming SM. Modifying it to add those more complex feature is often the only entertainment and challenge for those who play engineers And as you can see there’s plenty that can be done with what we currently have in game. If anything, SM should be causing more problems, at least when it runs with more exotic gas mixes (so simple N2 would still be a safe option for inexperienced engineers or even complete lack of engineering staff during low pop rounds) to give engineers some work with maintaining it and encourage coming up with all sorts safety systems.

If you are suggesting adding more atmos devices then I’m all ears, I was always a supporter of them and would like to see more but I feel it’s a wider topic not limited to just supermatter engine.


As a side note. Why not have the rbmk reactor on some stations as a chance to be there. I know monke has it for meta station. I’d be a nice injection of life.

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Have you considered writing this stuff into a guide on how to modify the SM? my man this is comprehensive

Though If one were to suggest more Atmos Devices, some more inclusion of the portable and heavy duty emergency scrubbers in atmos’ stock of tools, along with some more emphasis on the upgrade of said portable equipment, topped off with a quick connect system between the portable scrubbers and Canisters, rather than needing to make a mini pipe system to functionally use the two.

Possible replacement of floor based scrubbers in favor of perhaps wall vents would be VERY welcome, imagine all the wonderful streamlining of repair and decluttering of the floor if scrubbers and vents could be wall based rather than floor, not to mention how a single wall based vent or scrubber could be an option for two rooms rather than individual vent/scrubber systems for each room.

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