The power generator consumes one item or unit of fuel per second (except for uranium rods which last for two). This means that a fuel’s power output is both its power output per item as well as a generator’s power output per second when burning that fuel. Each power generator upgrade increases all power generated by 10% without increasing fuel consumption. This is an additive bonus, so you get +40% power when it’s researched all four times.
*Uranium rods last for 2 seconds instead of the usual 1, meaning that each rod provides between 2000 and 2800 energy per item. Uranium rods also require coolant, with one unit of coolant being consumed for every uranium rod consumed (1/2 per second per power plant). The game menus tell you different numbers and those are completely wrong, check your own power generators if you don’t believe me. The game’s power numbers for carbon ingots are also off.
Item – MW (no upgrades) – MW (all upgrades)
Carbon Ore – 50 – 70
Carbon – 100 – 140
Carbon Ingot – 200 – 280
Oil – 100 – 140
Fuel – 250 – 350
Hydrogen – 500 – 700
Uranium Rod – 1000* – 1400*
To better compare fuel sources, here’s what’s required to produce 2000 MW with each fuel source:
- Carbon Ingots: 10 Carbon Ore/sec (+ 10 Extractors + 10 Stampers + 10 Power Generators, consumes 20 to 320 energy/sec for processing)
- Fuel: 16 Oil/sec (+ 8 Refineries + 8 Power Generators, consumes 8 to 128 energy/sec for processing)
- Hydrogen: 2 2/3 Iron Ore/sec + 1 1/3 Nickel Ore/sec + 4 Water/sec (+ 4 Extractors (if you don’t scale this up to a multiple of 3 then add 1 more after scaling) + 4 Compositors + 8 Refineries + 4 Power Generators, consumes 16 to 256 energy/sec for processing)
- Uranium: 7/8 Uranium Ore/sec + 2 Water/sec (+ 3.5 Extractors + 4 Stampers + 1 Refinery + 2 Power Generators, consumes 8.5 to 136 energy/sec for processing)
In the early game, you only need one uranium planet before the water becomes your limiting factor for uranium power. And when you have a decent speed for the Matter Materializer water becomes a nonissue and it’s uranium which is the limiting factor.
This has nothing to do with gameplay, but this game’s hydrogen power must be fusion. It’s not pure hydrogen, it’s a fluid composed of disposable microscopic fusion reactors so small that they move like a fluid. And that’s why they require a composite to make and why they require nanites as a prerequisite and why they mix together with nanomachines so well.