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Power both the representation of electricity required to power a wide variety of appliances and buildings, and the name of a section of the architect that contains buildings that interact with this system.

Power conduit Waterproof conduit Power switch Wood-fired generator Chemfuel powered generator
Wind turbine Battery Solar generator Geothermal generator Watermill generator


Power is measured in the form of Watts (W). Power generators create watts, and appliances will consume a certain amount of watts to function. Most appliances will use power even when not actively being used - they must be manually switched off. Some appliances use less power when not in active use, sometimes referred to as "stand-by" power.

Power conduits can randomly short circuit whenever they are powered, and many power buildings or appliances can also short circuit while in rain or snow. See Zzztt... for details.


Power only exists within a power grid and requires something to transport it. Any power that isn't used or stored is wasted.

Power travels through power conduits, waterproof conduits, power switches, batteries, and all generators and generator equivalents. These power transporters must be directly adjacent to each other to connect and transport power between them. This is distinct from appliances, which do not transport power, but can connect to a power transport from up to 6 tiles away. See Appliances for more detail.

Configurations of connected power transporters are called grids. All points in a grid have instantaneous access to all power generated and stored by buildings attached to the grid. Grids that are not connected by power transporters, or only connected via a power switch that is turned off, are completely independent from each other.


Power is stored in the form of Watt-days (Wd), where 1 Watt-day can power a 1 W appliance for 24 hours. Each battery can store up to 600 Wd, but only store at 50% efficiency. This means that, for the purposes of storage, 1 W for 24 hours would only give 0.5 Wd inside a battery. Batteries lose 5 Wd of stored power per day, even if they aren't connected to anything or are uninstalled in their minified state. The stored power is drawn from if, and only if, the current load wattage on the grid exceeds the current generation wattage. Power can be stored and drawn from at any rate - the 500 Wd generated by 1000 W power generator over the course of a day and stored in 50%-efficient batteries can be consumed in 6 hours if the connected grid is 2000W below demand or last for days if demand only exceeds supply by a few watts.


Appliances are structures or buildings that consume power but don't transmit it. Most appliances will connect automatically if placed up to six squares away from a power transporter, or when one is placed within range.

When placing an appliance's blueprint, the most direct connection point to a power transmitting structure will be displayed as a golden yellow connection between the current blueprint position and the power. Note that it will display a connection even if the grid it attaches too does not have sufficient or any power, and that while an appliance will default to that connection point it will be able to connect to other sources with range using the reconnect gizmo mentioned below. If no yellow wire is shown, there is no connection point in range.

Once constructed, this connection will be displayed by a black "power cord" that runs from the connecting power transmitting building to the appliance in question. This cord is graphical only and cannot be interacted with or damaged in any way. Additionally, when viewing the power grid, a magenta wire similar to the yellow above will display the connection point of appliances in view.

When connected to the power grid, it can take a few moments before an appliance turns on.

Selecting any power transporter or appliance attached to a grid will display the "Grid Excess/Stored" values in the info pane. If the demand for power exceeds the current supply and cannot be made up for by consuming stored power, appliances connected to the lose power until the supply is once again below demand. It is currently unknown how which appliance is disabled is selected - it may be random.

Managing appliances

Reconnect: Click to force an appliance to reconnect to a conduit line or power source. This can also be used to change which power source an appliance is connected to if there is more than one in range.
Designate toggle power: Click to mark an appliance to be turned on () or off (X) by a colonist set to Basic.

Toggle ON Toggle OFF
Designate toggle power

Mechanoid power

Enemy mechanoids - that is, all mechanoids without any DLC - do not require any source of power. However, your allied mechanoids do. When controlled by a colony, an active mechanoid's power need falls by 10% per day. Non-working mechs lose 3% power per day. They can enter a dormant self-charging state, which instead restores 1% power per day for free. Mechanoids in a caravan do not consume or gain any power.

A mechanoid's power need does not directly translate to electrical power. However, mech rechargers require a constant 200 W, large mech rechargers require 400 W, and both chargers restore 50% of any mechanoid's power per day. When recharging, mechanoids create Toxic wastepacks, which can lead to pollution.

Power generators

Type Cost Fuel
(per day)
Size Base Output
Day Night Placement Market Value
Solar generator Steel 100 + Component 3 Ex.png 4 × 4 1,700 106.25 Check.png Check.png Ex.png In sunlight 295
Wind turbine Steel 100 + Component 2 Ex.png 7 × 2 2,300 164.29 Check.png Check.png Check.png In open ground 265
Watermill generator Wood 280 + Steel 80 + Component 3 Ex.png 5 × 6 1,100 36.6 Ex.png Check.png Check.png On riverbanks 600
Chemfuel powered generator Steel 100 + Component 3 Chemfuel 4.5 2 × 2 1,000 250 Ex.png Check.png Check.png Anywhere 295
Wood-fired generator Steel 100 + Component 2 Wood 22 2 × 2 1,000 250 Ex.png Check.png Check.png Anywhere 265
Geothermal generator Steel 340 + Component 8 Ex.png 6 × 6 3,600 100 Ex.png Check.png Check.png On geysers 945
Ship reactor Steel 350 + Plasteel 280 + Uranium 70 + Advanced component 8 Ex.png 6 × 7 1,000 23.8 Ex.png Check.png Check.png Outside
(can roof over afterwards)
Vanometric power cell N/A Ex.png 1 × 2 1,000 500 Ex.png Check.png Check.png Anywhere 1200
Unstable power cellContent added by the Royalty DLC N/A Ex.png 1 × 1 400 400 Ex.png Check.png Check.png Anywhere 400
Toxifier generatorContent added by the Biotech DLC Steel 125 + Component 3 Ex.png 2 × 2 1,400 350 Ex.png Check.png Check.png Anywhere 360

Version history

  • 0.0.245 - Electrical devices now short-circuit and cause fires if left out in the rain while running.