# The International Simutrans Forum

## Development => Extension Requests => Topic started by: Banksie_82 on February 02, 2009, 03:06:11 AM

Title: Pipelines
Post by: Banksie_82 on February 02, 2009, 03:06:11 AM
I’m sorry if this topic is in the wrong section of the forum, but I simply don’t know if it’s a part of the engine or the pak sets, but I’m sure someone will let me know.

My day job is a civil engineer, so I love this game. Although, I don’t specialise in rail or roads/transport, I’m a hydraulics engineer, that is, dams, flood control, water quality and also… pipe lines.

My idea is for a whole new way type, as well as the possibility of industry chains to go with it. I would like to see pipe lines be able to transport large quantities of liquids and gasses. I mainly had in mind water, oil and natural gas and “gas”/petroleum.

In real life, water is needed for thermal power stations as well as agriculture, steel production and others. It seems reasonable that they should also need it in simutrans. Also main oil routes are often conveyed by pipelines across entire countries. (I play pak 128)

I had in mind that they would be more expensive compared to trains unless there is quite a large quantity flowing through. However, water for example would always be needed in large quantities.

The pipe lines should have pumps on them to make the liquid flow faster, more pumps for the further distance or if you are going up hill, and less if you are going downhill, or even none if it steep enough to be “gravity feed”.

I have no idea about programming (or at least not what ever language simutrans is written in) but I’m more than happy to give advice on the realism of the maths and believable values. But it could be as simple as…

1 pump @ 20km flat = 100m3/(what ever)
1 pump @ 40km flat = 50m3/(what ever)
2 pump @ 40km flat = 100m3/(whatever)

And variations there of, a drop in the Z axis could be the equivalent to having a pump (gravity fed), a rise could need a pump but add nothing to the flow rate. Of course the numbers could be played around with to fit nicely with the rest of the game.

In my ideal world you would also be able to chose the pipe and pump size with a more realistic variation in the flows than shown above. You should be able to have branches off it, but that may be getting too complicated to program. Also you shouldn’t be able to mix the liquids in the same network, that’s just silly.

What do people think, is this possible, or is it just a “pipe dream”?

P.s. I assume very simular program would be required for “conveyor belts”. These could be used for bulk goods as they are in real life, sometimes for a hundred kilometres (Fosbucraa conveyor belt, Sahara Desert). But it would be good for two coal mines for example, servicing the same factory, reasonably close together but too far for the one station. One of the mines simply has a conveyor belt transferring the coal to the waiting train.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: emaxectranspoorte on February 02, 2009, 07:57:16 AM
Great! Cool! 8)

10 out of 10!
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Ashley on February 02, 2009, 08:21:43 AM
I believe this has been suggested before, indeed the graphics and some code actually exist for pak64, and this would likely operate in a similar way to power lines. I can't remember why it was denied before however, but the proposal definitely has my support, would be extremely useful in some situations for transporting oil long distances.

Incidentally, the idea of conveyor belts could be implemented using station extension buildings designed to look like a conveyor, and then placed in such a way that they extend the coverage of the station to encompass both of your closely spaced coal plants.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Fabio on February 02, 2009, 08:46:21 AM
i support this extension either. it would be be useful, IMO, specially for oil power stations or oil refineries A FEW TILES from the coast, where the station can't let oil huge tankers get closer, yet a train line wouldn't be economical.

It was in Hajo's original ideas, so it could go at least in experimental simutrans. the cost of the way should be MUCH higher (to lie down a pipeline AND maintainance costs) but the transport itself should be much cheaper. This way the player could choose between a higher investment paying in mid/long term (pipelines) and cheaper railway with less revenue. I wanted to ask this extension, BTW. Maybe some patchers could be interested (like it happened with rivers) in something which is partly there, already.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: prissi on February 02, 2009, 09:58:38 AM
It was/is denied because simutrans is about transportation networks, not making money by building infrastructure mostly.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Combuijs on February 02, 2009, 10:01:44 AM
Problem for me is: what fun is there in playing with pipelines? Of course it adds realism, but what does it add to gameplay? I mean, nothing is moving visibly, isn't it?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: emaxectranspoorte on February 02, 2009, 10:09:00 AM
Sorry...

Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: DirrrtyDirk on February 02, 2009, 10:14:13 AM
Water is not really needed in simutrans as of yet.

Remember, this is a transportation game. Not a city simulator and also not really a civil engineering game (as prissi pointed out).  And I also agree with Combuijs - pipelines instead of trains & trucks may be more realistic in some cases - but they'd also be simply boring IMHO.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: emaxectranspoorte on February 02, 2009, 10:17:40 AM
Thanks GOD for our diversity!

It looks like you are saying some people's breath is not really worth it.

Is that so?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Combuijs on February 02, 2009, 10:33:04 AM
Quote
Problem for me is
Quote
It looks like you are saying some people's breath is not really worth it.

I'm telling you my personal opinion, you are telling yours. DirrrtyDirk, Prissi and me are telling why they don't like it, Banksie, Timothy and Fabio are telling why they like it. That's no waste of breath, it should lead to a useful discussion based on arguments why this feature should or should not be in the game.

And as for 2050: pipelines transporting breath might be realistic.  ;D
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Fabio on February 02, 2009, 10:38:54 AM
what does it add to gameplay?

it can be used to connect a harbour with an power plant/refinery only 6/10 tiles apart (would you make a trucks line there? now probably yes, but tens of truck tanks one behind the other is not very realistic/nice to see, nobody would do like this in RL!!!), it can be used to transfer oil from a harbour to a near train station, where it can be shipped by train (same as above), it can be used when oilfield and refinery are only 6/8 tiles apart. It's cost should be VERY HIGH (as in RL) so that it won't be economical if longer than 10/15 tiles.

Anyway, i'd like to hear James Petts, maybe he's interested for experimental (so, NOT for the trunk)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Stubbsy on February 02, 2009, 10:48:09 AM
Just a quick thought, would you be able to use the same sort of coding as Powerlines and powerstations, to code the piplines?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Combuijs on February 02, 2009, 10:54:52 AM
Quote
would you make a trucks line there?
Trucks, Trains, Canal with ships (or just a station long enough to connect both refinery and dock  :D). In cities I've used underground trains when overground trucks could not do the job.

Quote
It's cost should be VERY HIGH (as in RL) so that it won't be economical if longer than 10/15 tiles.

But that's not realistic, isn't it? I mean, I don't know exactly what Russia and Ukraine are quarrelling about, but at least the gas pipelines involved are economical viable and more than 1000 kms long.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: IgorEliezer on February 02, 2009, 10:55:51 AM
If pipelines don't add anything to gameplay, then why we keep powerlines?

In logistic and urban planning, ducts are considered a mean of transport, yes, and they play a role in transport network although via and vehicle are the same object: the duct.

Simutrans would be really boring if we use pipelines everywhere. But this situation will never happen.

As far as I know, coal power stations and some industries need water to work. Today in Simutrans such factories consume water from somewhere I don't know, probably from underground.... ;D
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Fabio on February 02, 2009, 11:10:46 AM
Simutrans would be really boring if we use pipelines everywhere. But this situation will never happen.

good point!
it's up to the packset, to make them uneconomical for long routes and economical for small/medium. moreover, it's up to the common sense of the player, to use them in a interesting (== not boring) way. there are a lot of things you could build in simutrans to make it boring, it's common sense to avoid it (and if the top of the fun for a player would be to transport everything with pipelines, why to forbid him? :P)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: vilvoh on February 02, 2009, 11:17:14 AM
If pipelines don't add anything to gameplay, then why we keep powerlines?

Well, powerlines case is different. They actually don't affect to gameplay, but they enhance it, stimulating industries consuption and production. In case of pipelines, they may affect to the basics (transport vehicles) anyway I'm not against it. If it can be easily implemented, as rivers, why not? I'm sure that Simutrans has a lot of features some players usually ignore.

Today in Simutrans such factories consume water from somewhere I don't know, probably from underground.... ;D

I guess atm they get the water from rivers.... ::)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: emaxectranspoorte on February 02, 2009, 11:29:02 AM
And as for 2050: pipelines transporting breath might be realistic.  ;D

That's cool, because I consider water the breath of our habitat!
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: VS on February 02, 2009, 12:50:42 PM
I think some difficulties would arise in the part where conveyors and pipes can transport only one type of goods and in one direction.

Ways in Simutrans are non-directional edges of a graph, where vehicles move, and ways themselves do not affect at all transported freight. The difference from how things in Simu worked so far is quite big, it might be rather challenging to come up with some reasonable compromise. Making these new types of transport fit the current model well... dunno. It would probably require something fundamentally different.

What I'm talking about is the underlying model. Graphics are not important at this moment. How do you make it work?

To give a select few issues that must be addressed in some way: How do you choose direction of the line? How do you select which kind of goods is transported? Can the line alternate between different goods, and how? What about crossings? If two pipes meet, how do you make them not connect but go on? I'd like to hear what can be said about this.

Now correct me if I'm wrong, but powerlines are in a sense not a way at all, just global storages iirc... There the model is also very different from normal ways. And the solution there was simple - electricity travels at speed of light, so these pylons built in game are just a means of creating a connection, so that factories and power plants are connected to the same power counter. No vehicles at all.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Fabio on February 02, 2009, 01:58:40 PM
Some thoughts

And the solution there was simple - electricity travels at speed of light, so these pylons built in game are just a means of creating a connection, so that factories and power plants are connected to the same power counter. No vehicles at all.

The same assumption could be done for oil/gas/water pipelines. If they are under pressure (as they often are in RL), every time you get 1 cubic metre of fluid, another one goes into the pipes. For business reason, we can assume 1 m^3 of fluid enters-1 m^3 of fluid exits. The amount of fluid to put the pipeline under pressure can be not calculated, it's not important for gameplay.

How do you choose direction of the line?

One (or more) filling stations and one or more exit stations

How do you select which kind of goods is transported?

Probably in the pak itself, e.g.
Code: [Select]
`waytipe=pipegoods=oil`

If two pipes meet, how do you make them not connect but go on? I'd like to hear what can be said about this.
They will connect - if the good type is the same. If it's different, they won't connect
To cross them (or to cross them with a road or a railway) they can use either bridges, either tunnels.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: DirrrtyDirk on February 02, 2009, 04:56:19 PM
As for the comparison between pipelines and powerlines:

The biggest difference is in my eyes, that powerlines do not transport any "good". What they "transport" isn't essential to any production chain - it's just a bonus gadget to increase overall production. It is not necessary to have for any factory to work. And those powerlines are actually doing a job that no vehicle can do.

All of that is supposed to different for pipelines. So, my (personal) conclusion: those two should not be compared as they are entirely different.

Ok now back to the issue itself.

I agree that pipelines would probably be both useful and realistic to have. But for me (and I think for many others as well) the fun in simutrans is not from having the factories working as a goal of itself - it's having your vehicles transport everything to and from those factories and cities. I just don't see any of this fun in having a pipeline (as useful as they might be) just pumping things from A to B. (Compared to a nice vehicle network doing its dance, it is really rather boring IMO). After all we're talking about a game here - and games are all about fun and enjoyment. And just because something is useful in real life (and might also be useful in game), it doesn't mean that it's really good for the (fun of the) game.
However, the scenario that fabio came up with (about connecting only small distances, where vehicles wouldn't really fit in) has some merit. And I agree that, should pipelines come, they should be very expensive to build (to discourage people from using them on long distances - for reasons of gameplay and fun, despite of maybe being unrealistic) and I think they should have a fairly high maintenance, too (allowing them only rather small profits, so that vehicle should stay the primary choice, pipelines only secondary).

On a more philosphical - and personal - note at the end: I imagine the player's company to be more like ... FedEx, DHL, Deutsche Bahn, JR Group, etc.... not Gazprom or Eon, etc. In other words: just a transport and logistics and/or trucking and/or railway company - not a mayor's office, not a production industry, no civil services, etc... I hope one can understand what I mean. And on that point, I (personally) would probably restrict pipelines (if they ever come) to be only possible to be built by the "joker" player - the public hand (And to stay in this philosophy, the same would of course be true for powerlines as well - here they are actually the same  ;)).
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: emaxectranspoorte on February 02, 2009, 06:02:54 PM
As far as I can see Banksie_82's dream will only be a "pipe dream", only because doesn't fit in the fun of this game.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: DirrrtyDirk on February 02, 2009, 06:54:57 PM
Dude, is it so hard for you to accept that I have the right to express my personal opinion here - not a decision or ruling! (for that is neither in my powers nor my intention) - on this matter just like anybody else? And that I do so by explaining my thoughts on this issue in detail, so that people can debate the these things further, rather than only cry out "in favor" or "against" in (meaningless) one-line postings, like you do... well, I don't think I really have to defend myself for that. If you can't come up with more than that, don't blame me just because I can for "my side", ok?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Ashley on February 02, 2009, 10:35:14 PM
On the subject of connecting together factories which are very close to each other (e.g. less than 10 tiles) you can simply build a station which spans the gap between them. Goods will then be automatically moved from one to the other - though in this case you dont get any money for doing so, it can be more economical to do this in order to feed another stage of the production chain than loss-making trucks.

I am sure some enterprising individual could come up with graphics that resemble a conveyor belt to do this... ;)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 02, 2009, 10:37:07 PM
Relax, guys.  This is a game.  It is supposed to be fun...

I can see pipes influencing game play:
• Just as power lines do, they will occupy space.  That space can conflict with place for building roads, stations, etc.
• If the pak's authors idea is to make them very expensive, only rich players could afford them, build them and perhaps ruin a profitable line of a competitor in well advanced games.

As for how to build them:  underground, like tunnels.  Several qualities, with several capacities (speed).  They can cross, but only with the same type pipe.  They join stations.  I would work with packets the same.  A factory A produces a "packet of water" with destination factory B.  If there is a pipe route, the packet starts to travel and eventually arrives at destination.  They should be combined with no overcrowding of stations.  They would work somewhat like trains: all the path should be reserved from origin to destination and not used by any other packet until that packet has arrived.  Crossing should look like valves.

The pipe cannot be crossed by other way.  They would occupy an underground level and that could prevent some players from abusing them.

Just my ideas...
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: jamespetts on February 02, 2009, 11:02:24 PM
This is a very interesting idea, and really ought not be dismissed out of hand. Simutrans is, after all, about the simulation of transportation networks, and pipelines and conveyor belts are elements of transportation networks just as much as roads and railways. It's Simutrans, not Simu-vehicle, after all.

The biggest difficulties really would be implementing the gameplay mechanics and designing all the necessary graphical objects. Pipelines would have different gameplay mechanics both to power lines and to vehicular transport (albeit they would have characteristics of both). I suspect that more people are interested in transport by vehicle than in transport by pipeline, but that does not make transport by pipeline not worthwhile at all to include. As can be seen by the responses, a number of people would find pipelines fun, even if there are also people who would not enjoy using them as much as vehicles (anyone who doesn't like the idea doesn't have to use them, of course).

If somebody is willing to code a pipelines patch, and produce all the pakset objects for it, I would be more than happy to include it in Simutrans-Experimental (provided that it's reasonably stable, of course). Simutrans-Experimental is largely about experimenting with new aspects of transportation economics, and pipelines seem like a very interesting new angle, especially since we seem to have an expert who is able to give us some inside information into their economics. As VS said, however, there are some technical challenges to overcome before this can be made to work. It would be fascinating, though, to have a game that incorporated elements of transportation that are often not seen or known much about by the public, and I imagine that choosing between pipelines and railways, for example, could be a very interesting choice in some circumstances (which is what would make the game fun, especially if combined with upgrading of pipeline technology, having to deal with increases of capacity, factory closures, etc.).
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: VS on February 02, 2009, 11:12:22 PM
For business reason, we can assume 1 m^3 of fluid enters-1 m^3 of fluid exits.
Fabio, great idea! For some reason I never thought of that. The immediate travel can be justified easily then...

Code: [Select]
`waytipe=pipegoods=oil`
If my past experience with prissi is any indication, it would be made somewhat differently... adding a goods reference to ways would require another child node in code and pak format, which he wouldn't like adding to all ways just for the sake of pipes. Or maybe not. But that is probably just a technical detail.

I agree that pipelines would probably be both useful and realistic to have. (...) fun in simutrans is ... having your vehicles (...) games are all about fun and enjoyment. And just because something is useful in real life (and might also be useful in game), it doesn't mean that it's really good for the (fun of the) game. (...) transport and logistics - not a mayor's office, not a production industry, no civil services
These snippets match my opinion quite closely. If pipes/conveyors are added, they should not interfere with the main course of game, which is focused on building networks of the "vehicular" kind. I mean, they should not render other modes of transport useless, except in some niches.

Actually I think Timothy is right in that conveyor belts are better as station buildings. Easier than adding a seldom used exotic feature...

The pipe cannot be crossed by other way. They would occupy an underground level and that could prevent some players from abusing them.
Hm, what kind of abuse do you mean? Blocking other players? That can already be done with cheap railway, and solution is going 3d - bridges and tunnels. If pipes were really, really expensive overground structures requiring crossing by bridges, I could imagine that building them would be a huge commitment, since that would disrupt to some extent all other ways and pipes... Although from top of my head I can think of a few setups - station on a bridge over the pipe, for example. Funny how this "no crossing" strategy would also mean that crossing one's own pipes requires building a dummy station. It feels like an element of gameplay mechanic that might be worth keeping to increase the challenge ;)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: jamespetts on February 02, 2009, 11:47:19 PM
In reality, pipelines only render other modes of transport useless in fairly specialist conditions; if pipelines were realistically balanced in Simutrans, therefore, the same would apply there.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: IgorEliezer on February 03, 2009, 12:43:45 AM
Say, pipelines would not be fun once we can't manage vehicles. That is true.

Pipelines would be a very bad addition if such feature caused a considerable impact in gameplay if pipelines were used in any (or almost all) factory chain (s) so that you could substitute any vehicle just for sake of fun like "that's new, cool! Let me see how it works"... Final result: frustration for "boredom-ness".

First off, pipelines are not applicable in all freight categories. We have 7 freight categories (http://en.wiki.simutrans.com/index.php/Freight_category); only in category 3 (Oil/petrol) and water that pipelines make sense to be used. Pipelines will not transport Boxed goods, Bulk goods, fluid foods (milk? ::)) and so on.

Then, how is the impact of pipelines?

I dare to say that pipelines wouldn't cause big impacts if implemented with wisdom. How so? Pipelines should be added not as an alternative (say, you could substitute a train with a pipeline in any situation) but as an addition when it's reasonable to be used.

Today, a coal power plant just receives coal to produce energy. Coal is transported by train or by other vehicle. With pipelines, coal power plant would receive coal by a vehicle and water by pipeline. Coal will continue to be transported by a vehicle. But now coal power plant has got something different and new.

How to manage a pipeline?

Pipelines have switches. Say, if a coal power plant has received too much water, I could switch pipeline off, as I would do with a vehicle upon sending it to a depot for a while.

If a factory (that consumes water) is demanding too much water, I'll have to remove the pipeline of small gauge/diameter (costs \$\$\$) and I'll have to build a new pipeline of larger diameter (costs more \$\$\$).

As I have said: pipelines are mean of transport too, it's logistic too. I don't see any problem if a factory to work needed water or any fluid transported by pipeline in Simutrans. Even if required for a factory to work.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 03, 2009, 05:14:14 AM
Fabio, great idea! [quantity in, quantity out] For some reason I never thought of that. The immediate travel can be justified easily then...

I would not advocate for instant transportation.  There has to be a delay.  In the Russian gas crisis, the gas took some hours to reach destination when it finally was pumped.

Hm, what kind of abuse do you mean? Blocking other players?

I meant that if pipes are underground features that cannot be crossed by any other way, they would be a strong physical frontier in their underground level.  Players could not use them too much ("abuse" perhaps is not the word) since they would effectively block other underground ways.  That would be specially a challenge in cities with a populated underground.

Pipelines have switches. Say, if a coal power plant has received too much water, I could switch pipeline off, as I would do with a vehicle upon sending it to a depot for a while.

If a factory (that consumes water) is demanding too much water, I'll have to remove the pipeline of small gauge/diameter (costs \$\$\$) and I'll have to build a new pipeline of larger diameter (costs more \$\$\$).

The first statement in currently addressed by Simutrans with factories asking for goods when they need them.  Pipelines shouldn't behave differently here, imho.  If a factory doesn't require more water, it will simply ask for no more to water producing factories.

Regarding the second one, I think the key is speed of transportation.  The small diameter pipe will transport the water as well, but it would take much longer for the same amount to arrive.

Let's say: factory A requires 28 m3 of water from factory B.  With good pipe, it takes 1 day1 to arrive; with a bad one, 4 days.

It would work this way:  when B produces the water, a route to A is found and reserved.  No vehicle is needed in reality, but we can imagine one.  That imaginary vehicle will travel with the water.  It will pass good pipes and go fast there and bad ones and get slowed.  Eventually, the water will arrive.  That imaginary vehicle would not be painted in any way, of course.  It is only a way to program it.

Offtopic:  this reminds me about something I heard about of another pipe-like transportation: information.  Like in the Internet. What is the broadest-band network available at the moment?  50 Mbps,  100 Mbps in Japan?  Not at all, a truck full of CDs.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: emaxectranspoorte on February 03, 2009, 08:24:37 AM
Dude, is it so hard for you to accept that I have the right to express my personal opinion here - not a decision or ruling! (for that is neither in my powers nor my intention) - on this matter just like anybody else? And that I do so by explaining my thoughts on this issue in detail, so that people can debate the these things further, rather than only cry out "in favor" or "against" in (meaningless) one-line postings, like you do... well, I don't think I really have to defend myself for that. If you can't come up with more than that, don't blame me just because I can for "my side", ok?

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy… Watch out guys! Give him a gun or a rope! If he believes your breath is not worth it, you’ll be gunned down or hanged! He wants to be the first who crosses the bridge! Here we are, mate! Help yourself!
Is not my opinion or my solutions we are talking about. It’s Banksie_82’s!
I am an ordinary guy, student in Uni. I am not the best, so an average guy, one more time.
The sad thing is nobody asked Banksie how his idea could come to life, in the first place (of course in this game ;) ) Let him talk! I entirely embrace his ideas. IMHO a collaboration between him (hydraulic engineer) and IgorTekton (architect) could lead to an excellent result. On the other hand who doesn’t want to use pipelines, doesn’t have to. Simple, cool solution! Who thought about it?
I also like Banksie’s idea because it’s trying to make this game more realistic and I believe many guys’ (it doesn’t really matter whether they would like to face it or not) dream is to make it a reality one day.

BTW, you are not the only one who is opposing Banksie_82’s idea. Why are you taking it so personally? :-\
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 03, 2009, 10:29:22 AM
I can't remember why it was denied before however, but the proposal definitely has my support, would be extremely useful in some situations for transporting oil long distances.

I wanted to have the flow of fluids to be different from the electricity in power lines, but couldn't really get it working. After a while I lost motivation to complete the code; it didn't seem that exciting.

Another problem that hampered the introduction of pipelines at the time was that I wanted them to be underground, but Simutrans had no underground mode yet.

Still, water (also oil and gas) pipelines were one of the ideas that I wanted to add, and I think there once was a complete set of graphics for the pipelines - not very elaborate images, but well, they did the job while coding and testing.

When I brought up the idea again a while ago (I think it was in the german forum), I got a few opposing responses and didn't pursue the topic further.

Many words. Just briefly: I don't think they were denied while I was in charge, I just couldn't get them to work as I wanted, and I did not finish the code.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: DirrrtyDirk on February 03, 2009, 11:48:53 AM
Ok, maybe I went a little too far with that. Was a bad day yesterday and I'm coming down with the flu as it seems. So I apologize if I hurt anyone's feelings. But although what I said was probably phrased too rudely, the idea behind it still kinda stands.

But first:

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy… Watch out guys! Give him a gun or a rope! If he believes your breath is not worth it, you’ll be gunned down or hanged! He wants to be the first who crosses the bridge! Here we are, mate! Help yourself!
Wow... getting me a rope or a gun? Ooookaaayy. That's a cheap shot if you ask me...

Is not my opinion or my solutions we are talking about. It’s Banksie_82’s!
Exactly. Unfortunately you didn't tell us any opinion or solution of your own. You told us on which side you are - but not why. So if you think it is such a good thing to have, why don't you tell us what exactly makes it good idea in your mind - just as I (and others) have done?

I am an ordinary guy, student in Uni. I am not the best, so an average guy, one more time.
The sad thing is nobody asked Banksie how his idea could come to life, in the first place (of course in this game ;) ) Let him talk! I entirely embrace his ideas. IMHO a collaboration between him (hydraulic engineer) and IgorTekton (architect) could lead to an excellent result. On the other hand who doesn’t want to use pipelines, doesn’t have to. Simple, cool solution! Who thought about it?
I also like Banksie’s idea because it’s trying to make this game more realistic and I believe many guys’ (it doesn’t really matter whether they would like to face it or not) dream is to make it a reality one day.
Yes, it is Banksie’s idea (although it is not really new, so originally it actually wasn't). But nobody is keeping him from participating in this. It's an open discussion - we don't have to ask him specifically - he can always drop in his ideas - just like everybody else. We're only exchanging points of view - nobody's has made a decision yet. And you shouldn't drop remarks that hint at that. (That's what actually made me angry in the first place. It is not our position to rule on this and it is not yours to judge if that decision has been made yet.)
There are people who like the idea and people who don't. Both sides bring up points for everyone to consider, so that in the end we can come to a solution. And that process has just begun.

BTW, you are not the only one who is opposing Banksie_82’s idea. Why are you taking it so personally? :-\
You are right. As I said above, I probably overreacted. But between your last two postings I was the only one (VS only asked some technical questions - neutrally if you ask me) to speak up against it - so I made that assumption. If that was wrong I apologize.

EDIT:
Another thing that made me think I was the target:
As far as I can see Banksie_82's dream will only be a "pipe dream", only because doesn't fit in the fun of this game.
Maybe because I used "fun" as one the major points in the posting right before yours?

Oh and by the way: very creative of you to steal my signatures and rephrase them to attack me. Together with the fact that you said it would be best if I just killed myself?... or wanting to kill others? And all this "somebody's breath being worth it" after I have told you that both sides have the right to bring up their points, problems and concerns so that we can reach a conclusion in the end, instead of you judging where things are going, right at the beginning. I just critized you (in an unnecessarily unfriendly way, yes) for not really participating in that part at all, instead dropping lines that held virtually no information on the issue at all (for whatever side!). To turn that into me trying to oppress your (or anybody else's!) ideas... that requires some skill. Have you considered going into politics as a career? That skill should be highly useful there.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: KrazyJay on February 03, 2009, 03:37:43 PM
I'm wondering, and maybe I'm going either too fast or too slow, but if pipelines are used, thinking in layers (like roads are on top of soil, and signals on top of tracks), where are the pipelines? For example, if I use the removal tool, will the pipeline be removed before of after roads, or signals? Also, I'm afraid there may be too many layers. If Simutrans is supposed to be a simple simulation, easy to play and discover, then how can pipelines fit in? This last bit doesn't necessarily reflect my personal opinion though.

What I do think is that pipelines can be a nice addition, but only if it can blend in well with everything else that's represented in Simutrans, but surely doesn't replace current ways of transportation, especially because pipelines seem a little static to me.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 03, 2009, 08:44:36 PM
As I see them, pipes wouldn't merge with other ways or signals.   They will occupy one cell for themselves, just like power lines, but without crossings.

Electrification could be optional, used only if we want that liquid packets can go uphill (simulating pumps).

Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Stubbsy on February 03, 2009, 08:51:15 PM
i've started looking into this a little bit today. Would you class water as power? Also would you code it as to be a tunnel?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Banksie_82 on February 03, 2009, 09:46:19 PM
Wow, I’m quite humbled by the response this is getting.

I’ll just expand on my thoughts briefly and throw it back to open discussion.

Pipes can be above or below ground in real life, but just like train tracks, they are cheaper if they are above. However in urban areas we usually put them under ground because they get in the way and it’s easier to put them underground than all the roads.

Someone mentioned that the flow in pipes can be assumed to be instant, and in real life this is in fact the case (at least with liquids, not so much gasses) because you can turn on and off the tap at the downstream outlet, 1m^3 in – 1m^3 out. Just think of when you turn your tap on in the kitchen sink, you don’t need to wait for the water to arrive from the dam, it’s already there. Of course in the first instance you need to fill the pipes, but in the long term this is negligible.

I had in mind that various pipe sizes and pump size/number combinations would influence the maximum flow capacity through the pipes. For example, in the long term running of the pipe, if the capacity is greater than the supply from the producing factory or demand from the consuming factory there won’t be a bottle neck. If the capacity is less than both factories, then it only supplies what it is capable of.

Also, I had in mind that they would be used for reasonable distances but would only be cost effective if there was a huge flow rate. Where normally you would need a two way train line, running at capacity with just the one commodity, you could then embark on the construction of a pipe line.

I like the idea of water being used in the same way (for some factories, not all) as electricity is, i.e. it simply increases production rather than being required for production. In this instance I think you should need plenty of water that would warrant a pipe line. How often do you see a “water train” in real life dropping off its load at a power station or farm? However I would still like to see a receiving storage at these factories like any other commodity. To start with, this could be the only thing to be transported in a pipe line, rather than oil, just to see how it goes and how well it is received.

Also, it would be nice to have branch connections coming in and out of the main line but I understand this may be quite hard to code. Although I could be wrong, I know very little about coding.

Fluid flow through pipes is quite a complex science with a lot of variables that need to be considered, but I won’t go into them here. My point is, the calculation of capacity can be made to follow some fairly simple rules for the purposes of game play.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: jamespetts on February 03, 2009, 10:43:15 PM
Some very interesting ideas! A fair bit of coding and testing would be needed to get it to work, but, if there's anyone willing to do said coding and testing, it'd be an interesting addition to the game :-)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 04, 2009, 01:42:45 AM
@Banksie_82:  I think that treating water or other suitable to be transported goods as electricity is treated, is not good.  Pipes should be an alternative to normal transportation.  And also I don't agree with the model in which factories supply anonymous water to pipes and other factories get that water from them.

Goods produced in Simutrans have destinations.  Therefore, if a factory puts some water in the pipe that water has an owner and destination and cannot be taken by any factory  (again this reminds me of the gas crisis, where packets of gas were supposed to disappear in transit :) ).

So, in my view of pipes, pipes are not filled with water or oil.  There is an empty pipe joining Barcelona with Sebastopol.  Sebastopol asks for water.  Barcelona puts the water in the pipe.  Sebastopol will receive it.  It certainly would not be an instant transfer.  All the process involved can be modeled in the program by a packet virtually traveling through the pipe.

Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 04, 2009, 09:04:32 AM
i've started looking into this a little bit today. Would you class water as power? Also would you code it as to be a tunnel?

My plan was to have pipes as a object class of their own. They were also planned to have distinct code, different from both powerlines or any ways like tunnels.

Electric power was meant to be instant, fluids need some time to flow through the pipeline, and pressure will differ depending on the pipe length, also number of forks in the pipeline.

At least that was my plan, and as said previously I had troubles to code the fluid dynamics properly for pipelines.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Ashley on February 04, 2009, 09:16:56 AM

All factories in Simutrans have a certain production rate, so an oil well produces oil at a certain rate. A pipeline has a certain innate capacity, since it's essentially a very long and thin storage tank. Until that pipeline has been filled, transfer of material from one end to the other cannot take place, but after it has been filled, transfer is virtually "instant", since one unit in displaces another unit from the other end.

Thus you could give each section of pipeline a storage capacity, say, 1 unit of liquid. A producing factory produces material at its maximum rate, and this then goes into filling up the pipeline's storage capacity. Once one section fills, the next one does and so on. If there are branches in the pipe then all the branches must fill simultaneously, and at each branch the fill rate will halve, since liquid must flow from one pipe into two.

If a factory has more than one pipeline removing material from it, then its production capacity is split between the pipelines, and if there's also a station to take material by train, then again the production is split between the three (in the same way as production is split currently if more than one player has a station connected to the same factory).

It would likely be a good idea to implement some ability to prioritize production for the various different forms of transport too.

Simiilarly, a factory which consumes the liquid (e.g. an oil power plant) has a set consumption rate, and would thus remove liquid from the pipeline at a constant rate. As it removes a unit from the pipeline that section of pipeline then becomes "empty", and can accept the next unit from the section of pipeline before it. There would be some factor determining how quickly this occurs, which would be a function of pipe diameter and material viscosity. Net result: a big pipe will transfer material more quickly than a small one.

This system means that you can have multiple "sources" and "sinks" in a pipeline network, and that the network itself has an innate storage capacity (which is realistic). Players would need to consider balancing the production and consumption in a pipeline network, or risk undersupply, just as they do with a rail or truck network.

You could have several different sizes of pumping station, at increasing cost, which would boost the flow rate through the pipe (and these could be powered to increase efficiency like factories). The basic pumping stations attached to factories to take away the material would have a certain base pumping capacity, which could be upgraded. As previously stated, a certain bore of pipe would have a set maximum capacity/hour for a certain viscosity of liquid, and the largest bore pipe wouldn't be completely fill-able by only one pumping station/factory, to encourage clustering of producers.

Pipelines IMO should take up a full tile, be buildable underground or over ground, be bridge-able (but only for 1-4 tiles or so, so they can go over roads etc, but not cross long stretches of water) - here tanker ships would be used.

Pumping stations would have to be built at each source location, which would cost more for higher capacity, additionally "receiving stations" would have to be built at the consumer, again with a cost based on capacity approach. All of this could be timelined too, so that better pumping technology and pipe becomes available over time.

That's just the way I'd do it though :) Am kind of tempted to write a simulation to see if this would work.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: jamespetts on February 04, 2009, 09:22:56 AM
Timothy's ideas on how to integrate pipes into Simutrans are very interesting indeed - this seems like a sensible approach. I am not sure about prohibiting long underwater pipelines, though: in reality, there are long under-sea pipelines, for example, in the North Sea, transporting oil and gas to the mainland. They are, of course, very expensive to build, but are more efficient in the long-term than boat transport.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 04, 2009, 12:58:03 PM
@Timothy: in your view of pipes, when under production happens, there would be "bubbles", let's say it.  The problem I see with your approach is twofold:
• The dynamics of these bubbles: you suppose there is "upstream" (to producing factories) and "downstream" (to consumers).  But that imposes unrealistic one-way pipes.  Some sections will be bidirectional.  In that case, where should the bubbles go?
• The problem of ownership: what factory is supposed to take the oil/water?  Any?  Who is to be paid and charged for transportation?

And a final: the behavior in slopes?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 04, 2009, 01:21:43 PM
The problem of ownership: what factory is supposed to take the oil/water?  Any?  Who is to be paid and charged for transportation?

The needed inputs will be specified in the factory dat files. I don't think we need to answer this now and for all factories. It's good if we make it configurable for each factory.

Many factories will need water, some will need gas and/or oil.  maybe there will be more fluids and gases, like hydrogenium, or some sorts of chemicals.

As usual the pipe owner will be payed for the quantity and distance transported.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: VS on February 04, 2009, 01:48:52 PM
I would go with KISS for the parts of design interacting with user. If there is no reliable way to know which direction is used, how do I decide where to build pumping stations? -> slopes don't matter or pumping stations are not needed.

Hajo: I can imagine pipes used commonly for water, crude oil and gas (?). So far no other goods present in any of paksets for Simutrans are suitable for such transport or transported so. Milk or beer? Hah :D Maybe gasoline/petrol.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 04, 2009, 02:24:37 PM
Hajo: I can imagine pipes used commonly for water, crude oil and gas (?). So far no other goods present in any of paksets for Simutrans are suitable for such transport or transported so. Milk or beer? Hah :D Maybe gasoline/petrol.

Let's try to make a list

- Water
- Natural gas
- Gasoline/petrol/oil
- Hydrogene (particularly for future oriented paks)
- Chemicals

And more distant ideas:

- Long distance heating/district heating/steam
- Sewage

Pipelines could extend Simutrans a bit more into the Simcity-ish grounds. This is more brainstorming now, though.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: sojo on February 04, 2009, 02:43:20 PM
Pipelines could extend Simutrans a bit more into the Simcity-ish grounds.
Simutrans is not so far from Sim City. Well, it works on an other way. But with the Editor you can make many things what you can do at Sim City.

I think, if Simutrans will played from more Sim City players is this not bad. ;)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: KrazyJay on February 04, 2009, 06:28:01 PM
A little off-topic, but imho SimCity died when Societies came out. SC4 Deluxe FTW, after Simutrans then ;) Sim City 4 had a nice game play though, if Simutrans can ever reach that level of game play, it would be perfect.

Can pipelines have a separate underground view like Sim City has? (All other tracks hidden?) And if so, would that be in the best interest of Simutrans (consistency)? I think that would be a convenient way to lay pipes down...
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: ij on February 04, 2009, 06:31:51 PM
And more distant ideas:

- Long distance heating/district heating/steam
- Sewage

Also garbage is transferred using some pipe-like structures in some places (both low pressure and conveyor belts are used) to a joint place where it's easier to pick up than building by building. I think that there's even some rather large city in south-western Europe which has a city-wide garbage collector (I don't remember which it is though). And here in Finland such system is to be used on one area once it gets built in the first place.

And, also airport luggage goes in a form of pipes btw... :-) Such system could be used to increase the airports capacity somehow.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: z9999 on February 04, 2009, 07:05:57 PM
I don't know in other countries, but we usually don't pay transportation cost as gas fee or water fee. We will pay basic fee and pay for gas or water itself.
We don't pay money for the distance of pipelines. It's not a transport game, I'm afraid.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 04, 2009, 09:04:04 PM
The needed inputs will be specified in the factory dat files. I don't think we need to answer this now and for all factories. It's good if we make it configurable for each factory. [...]

Perhaps I wasn't able to explain it well.  I didn't mean that.  I meant that if the model is a pipe full of liquid and factories putting liquid in and out the pipes, that is not compatible with factories connections in present simutrans.  Factory A has a contract with Factory B.  Factory A produces water, Factory B consumes it.  But if Factory A just push water to a pipe shared by many factories, how can factory B know if that water in the pipe is for it or not?

My model is when some water from A is to be delivered to B, the whole pipe segment is reserved and cannot be used for other possible connections until the transfer is completed.

@VS:  about SimCity: I think the key is the degree of detail and the focus.  SimCity is focussed on city management, transportation is only a part.  Simutrans foucusses on transportation.  Some factors may affect the quantities to be transported, but it is not the focus.  For instance, I would find very useful that for a certain city population to be mantained some water/food ought to be delivered to the city hall, for instance.   That is not management of the city, that is only a transport requirement.

@ij: we can see pipes from an abstract point of view.  It is a means of transportation but without vehicles.

@z9999: I don't agree fully.  In consumers bills it is not a separate item, but surely we pay for it.  It is hidden under the fee.  Everyone pays the same, but to be fair a distant town costumer should pay more.  When industries are involved, there may be an agreement between producer and consumer.  The cost will include everything: goods and transportation and I guess may depend on distance.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: VS on February 04, 2009, 09:19:45 PM
I did not say anything about simcity...

If pipes must make money, they must generate profit in some way.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: z9999 on February 04, 2009, 09:43:36 PM
We are transport company, the owner of goods are not us.
We earn by transporting customer's goods, we never sell goods.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: prissi on February 04, 2009, 09:57:33 PM
z9999 has expressed my concerns; although I have to admid that the electricity break this concept already (but then electricity cannot be moved by any vehicle).
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: DirrrtyDirk on February 04, 2009, 11:45:18 PM
Actually, I had said pretty much the same (before the "incident").

Slowly this really appears to become a discussion not only about pipelines but where simutrans as a whole is going... Should it stay "just" a transportation game or should it move on to be something more like simcity (with the player having to provide all kinds of civil services as well).
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 05, 2009, 02:01:07 PM
... that is not compatible with factories connections in present simutrans.  Factory A has a contract with Factory B.  Factory A produces water, Factory B consumes it.  But if Factory A just push water to a pipe shared by many factories, how can factory B know if that water in the pipe is for it or not?

I think this scheme will not work with pipelines anymore. There are "sources" of water/oil/gas, and "drains". The pipelines distribute. In between sources and drains there might be contracts, but the pipeline owner does not know (or need to know).

 I mean, "drains" just pay "sources" for the amount drained, but the pipeline owner does not need to know these transactions, he needs only take care that the pipeline network can suit the needs.
[/Edit]

Income for pipelines is the "basic fee" that z9999 mentioned. The pipleline owner gets some money for just providing the pipe. I think it'd not be too far off to have this "basic fee" depend on length of the pipe.

Yes, this is something that expands Simutrans. It's different, and needs new rules. But I don't think it will break Simutrans.

Pipelines are still transportation, just different from vehicles. More like powerlines. (Actually the current powerlines were build on my basic pipeline code, which I could not finish.)

Edit 2:

Slowly this really appears to become a discussion not only about pipelines but where simutrans as a whole is going... Should it stay "just" a transportation game or should it move on to be something more like simcity (with the player having to provide all kinds of civil services as well).

I don't want a full SimCity simulation based on Simutrans. But I'd like a bit more of the infrastructure parts that SimCity had.

Fire statiosn, hospitals and police, I don't want in Simutrans. These are definitely not transportation. Pipelines have something like roads, or like powerlines, and therefore were included in my plan.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: DirrrtyDirk on February 05, 2009, 02:34:02 PM
I agree with Hajo that pipelines as such should present little to no danger of breaking simutrans at all (especially as they are, by their very nature, limited to a couple of specific goods only).

But I am wondering if they are really worth the effort necessary to implement them, when they return so little "fun" to the gameplay as I fear they do (just my purely personal view and taste of the matter, as I have described earlier). I (still) tend to say "no" on that. But I'm only here to voice my opinions, thoughts and potential problems - not to force any decision in my favor (even I could do that - which is luckily not the case), and certainly not to stop people from voicing (differing) opinions of their own.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: isidoro on February 05, 2009, 08:56:22 PM
I did not say anything about simcity...

Sorry.  My fault.

I think this scheme will not work with pipelines anymore. There are "sources" of water/oil/gas, and "drains". The pipelines distribute. In between sources and drains there might be contracts, but the pipeline owner does not know (or need to know).

That would certainly be different.  If a pipe is shared by several sources and drains and one factory takes some water, which of the sources would replace that water in the pipe?  How much time will be required for the chosen factory to replace "that bubble"?
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 06, 2009, 01:33:06 PM

But I am wondering if they are really worth the effort necessary to implement them, when they return so little "fun" to the gameplay as I fear they do

They might - while I was working on them, everything else seemed more important, and that was also a reason why the code never really was finished.

It was a curiosity item mostly. I don't think they are important, but they could be a nice addition. So if someone feels interested, and wants to try, I'd say feel free to do it. I'm sure it's a nice addition, but it's not a top priority. Should be nice work for someone who is interested in the topic anyways, and enjoys the idea of working pipelines.

Sidenote: My original implementation would have made the player owner of the sources, and payment would have been for the pipeline _and_ the delivered goods, very unlike to the other factories and transport in Simutrans.

I even had the idea of let the player prospect for water, gas and oil reserves. Only some spots on the map would yield such resources. But maybe this is really too far flung for Simutrans.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Václav on February 09, 2009, 10:50:05 AM
Where is download? I would like to play with pipes while I think they could have some problems:

1. you can build the first site - for exaple to connecting for example oilrigs with refineries
2. but after if you would need to connect else industries, you would have problem with crossings of both sites
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 09, 2009, 01:05:33 PM
I don't think we have a working version yet? So far the discussion was about the pros and cons of pipelines, and a few ideas how they could be implemented. A release with pipelines included will need some time, I think.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Václav on February 09, 2009, 01:25:41 PM
With? Why with? I think that for this time add-on is sufficient - but I understand that some problems could be in menuconf.tab and so on.

Still mainly for oil transportation it is very good idea and I am looking forward to available download in add-on version at least.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Spike on February 09, 2009, 01:33:23 PM
I think pipelines need additional code as well.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: Dwachs on February 09, 2009, 01:53:09 PM
With? Why with? I think that for this time add-on is sufficient - but I understand that some problems could be in menuconf.tab and so on.

Still mainly for oil transportation it is very good idea and I am looking forward to available download in add-on version at least.
If you want to transport the oil by overground pipelines just modify the powerline graphics.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: gerw on February 09, 2009, 02:00:24 PM
But then you have to rename 'electric energy -> oil'. That would work ;)
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: skreyola on October 25, 2009, 11:46:18 PM
I know this has not been discussed in a long time, but I have a couple of ideas for how this idea could be implemented.
I think pipelines are a great idea and would love to see them implemented. I think Timothy's model is a good one.
The problem of ownership has been mentioned a few times. That is, Factory A (oil field) produces a good (oil) but keeps it on-hand until a connected factory, say Factory B (chemical plant) buys it. At that point, it drops the good onto a station that meets the way.
What if a Source_Pump station extension, when it is built, is connected to Factory A (so it can buy the good to fill its capacity, at some significant cost to the player) as a consumer. Once it has filled the connected network, it can then send its internal supply to any attached station extension of type Destination_Drain, limited in speed by the capacities of the smallest pipe section on the route, the need for pumps to get above rises in terrain or other way overpasses, etc. passing on the same good meant for the factory at the destination. Then, having delivered that amount of the good to Factory B, it can collect the good waiting at Factory A meant for Factory B to refill its capacity.
This may not be a viable idea, but at any rate, here's an idea for a vehicle-based approach to go along with it or be used without it:
If a vehicle is needed to do these things, it could be one of the invisible, internal packet launches (1unit of fluid, 1000km/h, reserves the entire route from source to destination, 10 of them are automatically included in the cost of the Source_Pump and dynamically assigned routes to Destination_Drain buildings more or less evenly for sources that feed multiple destinations, but a single source could only route to 10 separate destinations).
Alternately, the 10 vehicles could be manually given destinations by selecting the Source_Pump and creating a fluids line/schedule for each of the ten packet bubbles.
Thoughts?
Title: oil pipe lines
Post by: grampybear on January 22, 2010, 07:07:11 PM
Now that we have advance tunnels has any consideration been given to pipe lines? This would allow for direct connection to offshore oil rigs or for the development of offshore oil docking for super tankers, once on land the pipe line could be made similar to power lines direct to oil refinery or oil power stations. It might even spawn new industries depending on the development of natural gas. Just an idea.
Title: Re: oil pipe lines
Post by: Combuijs on January 22, 2010, 09:00:35 PM
Well, see the discussion here: http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=1413.0 (http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=1413.0)
Title: Re: oil pipe lines
Post by: grampybear on January 22, 2010, 09:17:08 PM
Sorry, I missed the earlier discussions. Include me on the positive side for this addition to the game.  Thank you
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines (in: Topic merged)
Post by: IgorEliezer on January 22, 2010, 11:41:26 PM
NO FEAR! Igor is here to save the day. :D

Topic merged.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: wlindley on January 23, 2010, 08:04:48 AM
If coal (slurry), oil, petrol, and natural gas -- perhaps even water -- "receiving industries" were required for city growth (inside city limits) in appropriate years, as electricity, that could add interest to the game.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: werl on March 07, 2010, 08:54:45 AM
My view, the pipes could transport water to factories to increase production. similar to power line.  ;D

Have thought about pipes before, but dismissed the idea.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: wlindley on March 07, 2010, 03:00:03 PM
Hmm... in some of the SimCity versions, cities needed water pipes... the same could be true here, where towns need both an electric transformer and a water-tower inside city limits to exceed some population threshhold.  Water, unlike electricity, could also be supplied in tank vehicles.

One step further, cities could also require certain levels of watern, food and goods to continue their population.  At some point, though, we get into city-simulation more than transport-simulation.
Title: Re: way type - Pipe lines
Post by: werl on March 07, 2010, 08:06:43 PM
Agreed. love the idea.
Title: Pipeline
Post by: Hitardo on November 30, 2012, 05:25:14 PM
What do you think about a pipeline?

A pipeline, with stations build near a factoy (Oil Well), and going to the other station, near the other factory (Oil Refinery).
Much like the High Voltage system, but with fluid (Crude Oil and Fuel Oil).

I think this will be pretty good :)
But not possible with Petrol and other stuff.

What do you think?
Title: Re: Pipeline
Post by: Ters on November 30, 2012, 05:59:05 PM
It's been thought of and discussed several times before. Personally, I find it boring.
Title: Re: Pipeline
Post by: Combuijs on November 30, 2012, 06:27:22 PM
See the discussion here: http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=1413 (http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=1413)
Title: Re: Pipeline
Post by: Hitardo on November 30, 2012, 06:54:58 PM
Ok!
Thanks.
I will give it a lOOk :)

Best Regards from Portugal!!
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Fabio on November 30, 2012, 09:20:36 PM
See the discussion here: http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=1413 (http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=1413)

Honestly I've been all the time a big supporter of pipelines, hince I'm just glad this topic was bumped. :D

I see them as a complement to existing transport types.
For this reason they should have high cost, high maintainance and revenues just enough to cover maintainance.
Imagine you get a refinery 3-4 levels uphill at mere 8 -10 tiles from the shore. How do you supply it from an oil rig? Do you build a canal climbing that much? Do you make such a short line with a train or many, many trucks?
There a pipeline would be just perfect. The trick would be to make them poorly attractive from the revenue point of view, just to discourage them on long distance hauls, but convenient for short segments.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: isidoro on November 30, 2012, 11:22:32 PM
But in RL pipelines are certainly long...

Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Fabio on November 30, 2012, 11:27:26 PM
Sure! I wouldn't mind long pipelines in Simutrans as well.
My idea was to address the concerns of those who don't like them.
Sure enough they must be expensive, though.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Zeno on November 30, 2012, 11:33:41 PM
IMHO, pipes as a concept do automate transportation by replacing one or more vehicles with pumps. Thus I can't find them interesting at all for a transport simulation game...  ???

Edit: Let me add that what you fabio explain is a good reasoning, but would be a rather small percentage of the normal use; moreover, this has been discussed a zillion times...
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: An_dz on December 01, 2012, 02:52:20 AM
Just to include that I'm with Zeno.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Fabio on December 01, 2012, 03:01:15 AM
So, nobody here likes pipelines? ::'(

Obviously there might be many other priorities, but if they were possible at a moderate effort (e.g. recycling powerlines code), they would be an interesting addition (and also covering only a fraction of current transports) and then who doesn't like them or finds them boring won't use them. :confused:
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: ӔO on December 01, 2012, 03:10:53 AM
IMO, pipelines are already achievable with waterways.

Slow, under 20km/h, with near infinite capacity. It's more like 15km/h for most lines.
The only catch is that ships need a return journey, where as pipelines are one way. (unless you run two of them)

To counter the return trip, you could do something like 200km/h speed, 1kg weight, 100L capacity and only give it enough power to move at 15km/h when fully loaded. When it is empty, it should be able to hit 200km/h no problem.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Vladki on January 19, 2013, 10:40:24 PM
For those who like pipelines. I have prepared a pipeline as a station extension. So you can extend the harbor's coverage area towards the factory. So this pipeline has infinite capacity and immediate delivery, and can deliver everything ;) Enjoy.

Edit: added the source files as well.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: IgorEliezer on January 19, 2013, 10:46:36 PM
*claps*

Very clever! 8)
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Fabio on January 19, 2013, 10:51:40 PM
Nice idea!
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: greenling on January 19, 2013, 11:04:16 PM
I like Pipelines. They have capacity.
@Vladki can you upload the Png and dats from the Pipline Pak?
Thank you.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: diesseits on January 26, 2013, 04:51:50 AM
@Vladki that's a great idea. Is there any chance of getting a 128 scale version?

Doing pipelines as station extensions is definitely the right way to do it, but has the drawback of extending the station in ways that don't make sense - i.e. teleportation of people and non-pipelineable goods. What would be good is if the pak could define that a station extension only extends the station's radius for a customisable number of tiles, and only for certain goods. Does anyone know if this would be difficult to implement?
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: jk271 on January 26, 2013, 01:05:00 PM
It would be nice to have the pipeline for crude oil in the game. It would take new transport type into game with different construction costs and maintenance costs settings in contrast to other transport types.
If someone finds it boring, nothing forces him/her to use it. If you do not like road transport, you can still use railway transport. But why to deny others to use it?
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Vladki on January 28, 2013, 06:00:29 PM
@Vladki that's a great idea. Is there any chance of getting a 128 scale version?

It is for pak128, just the screenshot is zoomed out, to fit in allowed file size
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: greenling on January 28, 2013, 06:56:38 PM
the Piplines they you make get my on a idea.
:idea:
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Vladki on January 30, 2013, 06:19:06 PM
Just an update - pipelines for slopes as well ;) I hope you will find out how to build them ;)

Anyway, how complicated is it to add a new mode of transport (rail, road, maglev, ...) ?
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: IgorEliezer on February 08, 2013, 11:15:16 AM
Just an update - pipelines for slopes as well ;) I hope you will find out how to build them ;)
Why don't you open a topic in pak128 add-ons board (http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?board=27.0) so people won't miss your add-on?
Title: Re: Pipelines under Devlopment not ready to use
Post by: greenling on February 08, 2013, 02:06:30 PM
Hello IgorEliezer
The Projekt Pipelines it not ready, to go as addon for pak128.
It miss some very important parts. And My brain get it not to roll.

Title: Gas Pipe VS. Trains
Post by: vzrenggamani on January 21, 2016, 01:49:07 PM
Hi,
I have one request...
I think Gas pipe/ Oil Pipe have some new experince for simutrans player ( i know simutrans is a simulator transport )
Because I am very bored seeing Train / truck carrying goods from  Oil pump / gas pump to Factory .. So, i think gas pipe is one of thousand ways to get new experince simutrans gameplay..
#HopeYouUnderstandMyEnglish
Title: Re: Gas Pipe VS. Trains
Post by: Leartin on January 21, 2016, 01:58:04 PM

The problem is that it does not do anything exciting. With trains, you'd lay tracks and send trains on their way, you'd reuse the same tracks for other trains building a network, and you might update the trains after a while. With pipelines, you just build a pipeline, and never ever look at it again.
Title: Re: Gas Pipe VS. Trains
Post by: vzrenggamani on January 21, 2016, 02:04:30 PM
@Leartin
I Know that :( but trains still used for Transportibg good from factory to store and maybe the pipelines will be get leak and replaced using trains again . This is my crazy ideas :(
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Isaac.Eiland-Hall on January 21, 2016, 03:19:35 PM
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: vzrenggamani on January 21, 2016, 03:26:24 PM
maybe , we can add repair vahicle to repair  the pipelines ? So , Is have some realistic Experince

Note : Its a double post ?
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: An_dz on January 21, 2016, 03:59:01 PM
Note : Its a double post ?
No, Isaac just merged your request with the previous, but same, request.

Check above about all the discussion that lead to no official support for pipelines.

In case you want to save some time the decision was: No excitement as Leartin already pointed and you can unofficially do it, as Vladki has shown.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Isaac.Eiland-Hall on January 21, 2016, 06:53:25 PM
Note : Its a double post ?

I will let you know if you doublepost. I promise.

To again explain one more time: If you reply to yourself and it's been less than 24 hours.................. Look, I'll show you what a double post is.

First, notice how the reply I'm making now is the last post in the thread? (as soon as I post it)
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Isaac.Eiland-Hall on January 21, 2016, 06:54:23 PM
Now, THIS reply is a double-post because my reply above is the last post in this thread, and THIS reply is less than 24hours after the above.

If I wanted until tomorrow, and nobody else had replied -- if THIS post was made 24h AFTER the above post, then it would NOT be a double-post, even though I replied to myself.

but because I am replying to myself in LESS THAN 24HOURS, it is a doublepost.

Also, it is NOT a huge deal, only a minor annoyance on the forum. THat's why the "warning" is stated as a "gentle reminder". You will not get in trouble for doubleposting unless you do it a lot, and even then, I will just say "Okay, look, you've got to learn, silly". Stop worrying about it so much please :)
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: ucho on January 21, 2016, 07:32:40 PM
The url posted above is broken, it is now: https://uran.webstep.net/~vladki/simutrans/pak128/roura/
I prefer to simply use "Gas / Fluid Station Building" from default pak128.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: isidoro on January 21, 2016, 10:22:36 PM
maybe , we can add repair vahicle to repair  the pipelines ? So , Is have some realistic Experince

That's another feature of ST: no repairs, no breakdowns, no natural disasters, etc.  That was considered a tricky way to keep the player busy with no real purpose and it isn't simulated.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: DrSuperGood on January 22, 2016, 05:39:33 AM
Pipelines could be made into an important gameplay feature, but they would have to be implemented correctly so as to require effort to use similar with other transport types (except aircraft, which are currently broken in that they are just too simple to use).

Unlike normal transport which moves packets of goods between destinations in convoys, a pipeline would be a tunnel which moves goods at a certain rate from source to destination in a continuous flow. One could model this by "filling up" the pipeline representing the quantity in transit and then getting a steady flow out every tick.

So that skill is required, pipelines would suffer from various semi-realistic physical constraints. The longer the pipeline the slower the flow out is. If you are pumping up hill the slower the flow is. Turns slow flow as well, with right-angle turns being very bad. To raise flow you need to place pumps along the pipeline, which will cost you. Further more pipes are limited to a maximum flow which they can carry (pressure) meaning that you cannot just bunch all pumps at one end of the pipe and need to spread them where needed. Each pipe needs a origin and termination, and does not support multiple. Transfers can be used to split pipes (eg 1 termination and then 2 pipe origins). This means that for dual flow you will need 2 separate pipe lines.

Pakset wise the mechanics would apply to fuels (oil pipe line) and bulk (conveyor belts, often used in mining). As time progresses you will get access to bigger or more efficient pipes and pumps. The pipes themselves should have reasonable maintenance cost but are practically invariant in tunnel, bridge or surface form. Construction costs should be quite high (tunnel level, if not more). Potential profit from a pipeline is lower than with trains or road, especially since it will only ever ship in one direction.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Yona-TYT on January 22, 2016, 06:05:17 AM

@DrSuperGood... I agree with you, this can be a very important feature for Simutrans, in fact I really like the idea.  :thumbsup:
It could also consider water services to industries or even for cities, something that looks interesting.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: vzrenggamani on January 22, 2016, 06:36:36 AM
i am forgot about denied request / extension , sorry
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Leartin on January 22, 2016, 06:55:50 AM
Pipelines and Conveyer Belts can be very interesting, after all there is a whole game based on them (Factorio)

But would they fit in Simutrans?
With vehicles, if there is no complete connection, no goods are provided. Goods are only provided for a specific destination. There is some logic about how many goods are on the way.
With pipelines, you could have it so no oil is provided unless there is at least one complete connection, but since you try to "fill" each pipe tile before the next starts filling, you can't really have each liter of oil have a specific destination. I mean, you could, but that would be a memory issue, as you would not only need to keep track of the filling of each pipe tile, but also update them each time, wheras if each liter of oil is the same, filled pipes can be largely ignored and new oil just appears on the first non-full pipe-tile, until it appears at the consumer.
This also means that there is no way a consumer could keep track about how much oil is on the way, which might mess with consumers that get deliveries from both pipeline and vehicles.

By the way, I disagree that pipelines should be tunnels. While tunnels should be an option like with every other way, it's better to have them above ground as they might look ugly and need space, which are both incentives not to use them to some, but not all players (=diversity)
Another thing would be that pipeline pumps usually use a lot of energy, so one could make it a nessecity to supply electric energy to each pump. This would further complicate them, but also supply some network-ish use, since the electric lines serve a double function.

I guess either way, since DrSuperGood can program, he can program pipelines to the game. It can't hurt, since paksets would not be required to use them. Might just be a new waytype usable for walls that don't connect to railways, if nothing else ;)
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Ters on January 22, 2016, 07:10:05 AM
With vehicles, if there is no complete connection, no goods are provided. Goods are only provided for a specific destination. There is some logic about how many goods are on the way.
With pipelines, you could have it so no oil is provided unless there is at least one complete connection, but since you try to "fill" each pipe tile before the next starts filling, you can't really have each liter of oil have a specific destination. I mean, you could, but that would be a memory issue, as you would not only need to keep track of the filling of each pipe tile, but also update them each time, wheras if each liter of oil is the same, filled pipes can be largely ignored and new oil just appears on the first non-full pipe-tile, until it appears at the consumer.
This also means that there is no way a consumer could keep track about how much oil is on the way, which might mess with consumers that get deliveries from both pipeline and vehicles.
Simutrans would likely deal with oil in larger units than liter, such as cubic meter (as pak64 does). This still means that a 320 m3 oil tanker can carry oil destined for 320 different consumers in Simutrans today. However, all units of cargo destined to the same place are merged into one to make processing and storage of the data more efficient. If each pipe tile works the same as a vehicle, except that it automatically transfers to the next at certain intervals when full. Dealing with splits and merges might be difficult, though.

Another thing would be that pipeline pumps usually use a lot of energy, so one could make it a nessecity to supply electric energy to each pump. This would further complicate them, but also supply some network-ish use, since the electric lines serve a double function.
Then we get the problem that you can't get oil to the oil fueled power plant which is needed to pump the oil to the power plant. Which is why power plants don't power railway electrification in Simutrans.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Leartin on January 22, 2016, 07:48:22 AM
Simutrans would likely deal with oil in larger units than liter, such as cubic meter (as pak64 does). This still means that a 320 m3 oil tanker can carry oil destined for 320 different consumers in Simutrans today. However, all units of cargo destined to the same place are merged into one to make processing and storage of the data more efficient. If each pipe tile works the same as a vehicle, except that it automatically transfers to the next at certain intervals when full. Dealing with splits and merges might be difficult, though.
While a 320m³ oil tanker might have 320 different destinations, these 320 different destinations stay the same over the whole voyage. Depending on how much oil is in one pipeline tile, the amount of data stored might be about the same, but the amount of data constantly changing is different, since each pipeline tile always loads and unloads. Maybe that's not memory but performance, but it surely is an issue to think about.

Then we get the problem that you can't get oil to the oil fueled power plant which is needed to pump the oil to the power plant. Which is why power plants don't power railway electrification in Simutrans.
Except that you can, obviously, since you can use oil fueled power plants even now, despite there not being any pipelines. You'd need to be very unlucky to start a game where the only power plant is oil-fueled in a pakset that deemed it unnessecary to include oil vehicles. And since pipelines are supposedly very expensive to build, you could not start the game with them anyway.
Also, you could just have pumps that get way more efficient with electricity, to the point where not powering them isn't viable, but they still work and can get the system running.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: DrSuperGood on January 22, 2016, 01:44:42 PM
You model the entire pipeline as a single unit. Until the computed capacity is reached nothing flows out. After that the computed flow rate flows out. Goods get pulled and pushed from source to destination stop storages by the pipeline at the flow rate determined. Internally a list of where all the oil stored inside the pipeline is destined is maintained in case it ever has to be emptied (in which case pull them out in some fair way). Otherwise the pipeline acts as an immediate bridge between stops transferring wear packets at the determined flow rate. How it transfers the ware packets when congested to be fair is to be determined, but should flow rate suffice then packets to any number of stops would be transferred. So that oil to new destinations, arriving after the pipe is filled, can be stored in the pipe some sort of sharing algorithm is needed to empty out the current destinations and fill up a new one. An alternative is that your company has to buy all the oil in the pipeline, which has some very large cost as well (it no longer is in-transit, instead is standing volume which you substitute with oil at one side and remove oil claimed as the same at the other, aka a form of teleportation).

Quote
I guess either way, since DrSuperGood can program, he can program pipelines to the game. It can't hurt, since paksets would not be required to use them. Might just be a new waytype usable for walls that don't connect to railways, if nothing else ;)
Still working on power though, far too slowly I have to admit.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Leartin on January 22, 2016, 04:40:53 PM
That "single unit" approach is what I meant, but that does not work too well if the oil has a destination. If you have a connection A->B which is already filled up, it would be filled with oil for B only. If there is another consumer C nearby B and you start a connection via train, if the oil has a destination, you'd need to wait until the newly provided oil has flown through the whole pipe. And since as the player, you don't have direct control on who the oil pump is providing for, it might be that at the moment C gets connected, it's prioritized over B and gets all the oil.
Since the ratio at which oil is provided to different destination can be different from moment to moment, you'd either have to work tile-wise where each tile is a bit like a vehicle, or you can store the contents of one end/intersection of pipes to the next, as a list in a specific order (5m³ to C, 3m³ to B, 7m³ to C, 2m³ to B,...) which es emtied at the top at the flow rate. Not sure if that's more efficient.

Either way, it would be a lot easier if you just drop the destination thing and fill up the pipeline as soon as it is buildt. At each End, you build a tank (similar to the power station - its a fill-tank or drain-tank depending on whether it's buildt at a producer or consumer)
As soon as there is a connection between A and B, A starts to provide Oil destined for B in it's tank, which gets teleported at flow rate to Bs tank, where B can drain it.

Of course there is a lot of oil "lost" in the pipeline which does not count towards in-transit, but does it need to? In-Transit is just a way to avoid people from building a massive storage depot a few meters away from a consumer with only a small connection between them, just so it counts as connected, to avoid filling the consumer. But really, the in-transit should take in consideration how swift the goods move, since you'll just need more goods in-transit if they move slower. With 3-5 km/h, oil pipelines are slower than an ox cart, so if you calculate how much in-transit should be allowed, you'll get big numbers. Plus game wise, you can't  abuse it. Since the oil in the pipelines has no destination, you can't sell it on the way, you can't build some station close to the consumer and have a bad connection for the last few meters, since then normal in-transit would come into effect, and if you build a spiral pipeline you would not earn any more money, since the oil does not even look up where it went, it teleports, thus always using a direct connection.

Edit:
Still working on power though, far too slowly I have to admit.

Aren't landlines just like pipelines, but with a very high flow rate?
If you actually consider creating pipelines for the game, I would recommend thinking about it right away. Since your proposal about pipelines is to make them interesting by not just being something easily buildt, you could probably use some of the same logic for electricity. While electricity would not slow down because it goes uphill, (which just means you'd need to not hardcode the different flow-losses) you could have different flow rates with different voltage, which need transformers between them (transfers - I think you'd need them between different pipe capacities as well)
I'm just throwing this out, since it was speculated before that pipelines could use the electricity logic, which was deemed too boring. This means electricity is currently too boring, and it might be good to find a more interesting implementation, just like with pipelines.

Edit 2:
Actually, instead of something called "transfers" in pipelines, you should place tanks. This is so each pipe teleports from one tank to the next at it's flow rate, and so you can look at different tanks at different splits and see where the contents are destined to go. It also plays well with the idea that each pipe is one-directional, since you'd place a pump at each tank to pump out of it. It does not play as well with electricity - though I don't even know if landlines are truly bidirectional.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Banksie_82 on January 24, 2016, 03:02:30 AM

This was my original request, many years ago now. It’s something I’d still like to see done and the way DrSuperGood describes it is how I always wanted it to work (not like electricity currently does). I believe the amount of variables, including height differences, losses due to bends and length, max pressure capacities, various pump sizes and efficiency curves and of course size of pipes, could make this quite an interesting feature. I also have in my head plenty of UI ideas and possible data feedback from the performance of the system, but that may be my inner nerd taking over.

From a physical/coding point of view you can indeed have multiple origins and destinations flowing through the same segment of pipe. Destination of each unit becomes a bit tricky, but if you assume the pipe is always full, then the consumer just needs to ‘turn on the tap’ when they want some. With a maximum flow rate being the lesser of what their upstream supplier(s) can provide or the pipe network capacity at that time step, based on what other uses are demanding and suppliers supplying at the same time, and where they are on the network.

This sort of thing isn’t too dissimilar from my line of work IRL, so I’m very comfortable with the required equations/variables/maths to make it realistic. I’m more than happy to help where I can if anyone else wants to work on this, but my coding abilities only extend as far as excel, and I don’t mean macros.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: IgorEliezer on January 24, 2016, 05:14:48 AM
Oh, echoes from the past.

I think there's a fear that some players would stop using vehicles in favor of pipelines. Honestly, there will be a moment that your over-jammed train line no longer does the job and you have to switch your oil or ores transportation to something else, less ugly and convoluted. And by the way, you can't transport everything through ducts and conveyors. Most of goods in Simutrans simply don't fit in a duct-type way of transportation, people for example....

...unless we're talking about Jetsons. ;)

Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Ters on January 24, 2016, 08:56:28 AM
Most of goods in Simutrans simply don't fit in a duct-type way of transportation, people for example....

Elon Musk disagrees (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperloop), although there is arguably vehicles involved, if only to keep the passengers from suffocating.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: Vladki on January 24, 2016, 02:40:38 PM
Warning - this is long post and full of new ideas :) No commitment to do it, just asking for opinions, if this may be the way to go?

It is nice to see the discussion about pipelines revived. On Czech forum I had encountered requests also for cable-cars (or funiculars) like this one: http://www.lanove-drahy.cz/fotogalerie/nld_kuncicefoto.htm or this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gondola_lift

I think these share some common features with conveyor belts and pipelines, and could be implemented as special type of way.
- the way is tightly bound with the used vehicles, their cargo type, capacity and speed. You cannot just change the gondolas to bigger ones. You have to change the ropes, build stronger pillars, install more powerful engines, ...
- stations, depots and engines are combined into one building, and are (usually) at the ends.
- there are no switches, crossings, etc. Just straight point-to-point connections. If necessary, one can do it by building a transfer station, where more lines meet.
- lines have limited length (rope length, pump power)
- can be elevated (cable-car), surface/underground (pipeline), surface/elevated (conveyor belt)
- all vehicles are in fixed distance and move synchronously, (un)loading is done quickly during the movement.
- the number of vehicles is given by the length of line. (2 vehicles per tile (there and back) - with capacity scaled with tiles/km in experimental)
- goods flow (mostly) in one direction - exception are passenger cable-cars/escalators - one-way line would mean allowing only empty vehicles in one direction
- downhill and uphill (partially) negates each other. If a line goes up and down hill in one stretch, the gondolas moving downhill, help to pull those going uphill. Similarly fluids flowing downhill help to suck the part going uphill, and if the outlet is lower than inlet, it will flow by itself (viscosity may affect this though). There will be defined power demands for straight, up, down (double/half) tiles, capped with maximum power of the engine. (Downhill could have negative power demand) If max power (or max distance) is reached, line has to be split in two - new pump.
- conveyor belts are clearly only for bulk goods, funiculars for bulk and passengers, and pipelines for fluids.
- fluids in pipelines can be abstracted as special vehicles - big drops moving there, and empty bubbles back.
- this will preserve the behaviour of goods transferred by other vehicles

So how it could behave in the game?
You open a new pipeline menu - you see a few ways. They have defined - type (surface, elevated, bridge, tunnel), subtype (cable-car, pipeline, conveyor belt, escalator), max capacity or weight per tile (km), max speed, max length, one-way or not, power/friction for up/down hill.
First you build the line, ideally you could connect surface/tunnel/bridge/elevated sections as usual, just limited by total length.
Then you build the end stations (and depots at the same time). Each subtype (cable-car, pipeline,...) will have its own station/depot.
Station part will behave as normal station - has defined capacities for pax/mail/goods, and could connect to other stations, have the same coverage as other stations.
Depot part will offer to buy a stationary engine/pump and gondolas. It may work as if building a train, but you will be allowed to build only one or two engines (one for each end) and so many gondolas as is the length of line. For pipelines and conveyors imagine that  gondola is a bubble or blob ;). There may be more types of engines and gondolas for each type, and the depot window will let you build only those that are suitable (max weight/capacity) for the built line. If the engine is underpowered could be show, just like with trains. Where applicable the gondolas could be of different type (pax/bulk). For pipelines / conveyors a switch for one specific cargo would be needed - cannot mix crude oil and gasoline in one pipe.
Then you just click start (no schedule needed) and see the gondolas appear on the line and move. In a pipeline you could see drops of oil moving. (So it won't be so boring). You could stop the line by sending it to depot. Perhaps a speed knob might be useful to avoid running half-empty.
Title: Re: Pipelines
Post by: IgorEliezer on January 24, 2016, 05:56:00 PM
Elon Musk disagrees (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperloop), although there is arguably vehicles involved, if only to keep the passengers from suffocating.
Yes I know that thing, but it's like a monorail with a vehicle running inside the "rail". But the concept of pipelines in this topic eliminates the use of vehicles.