I have an idea of how to implement interesting combustion engines into GT6. The design of such engines should obviously match the design principles of GT6, which is making them an interesting engineering problem.
These combustion engines should obviously also able to run with the different fuels provided by GT or other mods. Making them just one block machines wouldn’t do the mod justice in my opinion, as they would seem very simple compared to burning boxes, which are obviously much more simple in real life than combustion engines in real life.
To make them more interesting challenges, I think it would be best to split the engines into multiple blocks:
The heart of any engine should be the combustion cylinder. It is feed the fuel in the sides and outputs the energy in the form of kinetic energy (not rotary energy) to the bottom. Other than that it also needs to be feed air or other oxidizers into the sides and also outputs exhaust gas to one side.
The exhaust gas and its temperature is different based on the combination of fuel and oxidizer and may contain unburned fuel. The exhaust gas may be used as fuel itself, but needs to be cooled first in that case, the unburned fuel may also be extracted through a distillery. The heat of the exhaust may also be useful.
Spark-ignition fuels: Some fuels may require a spark plug to ignite. The spark plug is a block which is placed on top of combustion cylinders and needs to be powered by electricity. The benefit of the spark plug is, it lets the player easily control the engine with redstone:
- No redstone signal means no ignition: The engine can be shut of
- A redstone signal ignites the engine: The engine can be easily turned on
- The strength of the redstone signal controls the speed of ignitions: Lower signal means lower output power and lower fuel consumption
This makes spark-ignition combustion engines extremely versatile, it is possible to build factories, that only use the power that they need at each point in time.
Compression-ignition fuels: Engines powered by compression-ignition fuels will always run at the maximum speed and compression-ignition fuels are generally more efficient than spark-ignition fuels. These engines need to be turned of by cutting the fuel lines. Turning them on can be a more difficult thing, as they need kinetic power being put into them to start the compression and combustion process.
This may be a problem for coding, as I don’t know if blocks can be producers and consumers of power at the same time and same side, but I am sure this problem can be resolved, maybe creating some special power transmission/conversion blocks specifically for engines.
This system should allow for creating engines of varying sizes for creating specific amounts of rotational power using specific fuels.
Combustion cylinders could of course also be tiered like most other things in GT6. The tiers should be a limiting factor on the maximum kinetic energy produced per tick. Using lower tier engines with very powerful fuel-oxidizer combinations should rightfully cause an explosion. Using lower tier combustion cylinders in spark-ignition setups would limit them to clock the engines at high speeds this way, as that would cause the power output to exceed the capacity of the cylinder and cause an explosion.
Feedback on the idea is welcome.