An electrical device that fits into a wall and pushes cold air into a room. Its exhaust port generates a lot of heat. Can be used to cool down rooms during the summer months, or to create a walk-in freezer.
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The cooler is a device that can be used to lower the temperature in a room by moving the heat to its other side. This effect can maintain happy colonists during high outdoor temperatures, prevent heat stroke and prevent the spoilage of food.
By setting the thermostat of a cooler to maintain a room temperature below the freezing point of water (0ºC / 32ºF), you can create a "walk-in freezer". Perishable items stored in this room become frozen and no longer susceptible to spoilage. In many warmer biomes, spoilage is a major obstacle in maintaining a food supply, and thus freezer construction is generally considered a high priority.
Coolers use power and take the place of a wall tile. Make sure that they are oriented properly when placing so that their blue square points into the room to cool. If powered and the room is enclosed with a complete roof and the entrance or exit of the cooler are not blocked via walls built later, it will begin to cool.
Coolers work by removing heat out of a room and placing it on their red tile side. This heat can be harnessed for use if desired, such as heating up living spaces in a base in a 'cold but not quite freezing' biome.
If the areas surrounding a room are hotter than the current temperature inside that room, heat will penetrate back into the room. As a result, the overall area of the room as well as the number of coolers affects how easy or difficult it is to cool a room. A single cooler has a maximum efficiency and may not be able to reach the target temperature of its thermostat if the room is too hot or too large. In these situations, building multiple coolers is helpful, but it consumes more power.
A cooler that is actively cooling a room will consume 200W regardless of the thermostat setting. Once the goal temperature is reached, the cooler will transition to its low power state where it only uses 20W. However, if the exterior of the room is warmer, the instant the goal temperature is reached, heat will penetrate the room, the cooler senses this and returns to the high power state (there is a time buffer to this effect to avoid a flickering between high and low power states). This low power state can be exploited to save power when using multiple coolers to cool a large room. Consider stepping down each cooler one degree below each other for this room. That way, only one or two coolers will be active in their high power state maintaining the temperature of the room, while the others remain in their low power states, only to be used during times of higher temperatures, such as daytime or heat waves.
Simple playtesting reveals that with an exterior temperature of 80-100°F (27-38°C), a single cooler can cool a room with a 10x10 exterior to a minimum temperature of 50-60ºF (10-16°C). Under these conditions, 2-3 coolers were required to maintain a constant (frozen) 30-31°F (0- Negative 1°C) within the same space. Further testing (or evaluation of the source code) could be used to determine an exact formula for cooler performance and temperature gradient speeds.