Steam Prototype (2)
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Kant Maybale walked back to the lab all by himself. The craftsmen were all preparing more charcoal to burn and test the machine, to learn more of it's capacities. He walked up to the table and pick up a piece of chalk residing in a wooden cup. Kant then moved to the black board and started writing.

On the black board, he wrote '12² X ((4 X 2 X 30) /12) X 7 / 33,000'. He then started simplifying the equation, where he got '12² X 20 X 7 / 33,000'. From there, Kant went further and got the answer '0.6109090909...' which he wrote as '0.61'.

As soon as he finished, Kant cleaned the black board to get rid of any evidence that he used it. He place the white chalk in the cup and walked away from the black board to a wooden closet on the other end of the room.

He opened them one by one, taking a specific item from each closet. From the closets, he took a thick wooden pencil, a clipboard with some beige papers attached to with with a metal clip and an hour glass with the number '15' on it.

Having everything he needs on his hands, he walked out of the lab and walked up the hall. When he came back to the testing room, he saw a couple of 10 liter wooden buckets stacked on top of each other, being weighed using a steelyard scale and some balls with numbers engraved in them.

Kant approached Victor, the Peterson brother with a thick mustache. He was the one that Kant put in charge to view the craftsmen measure the coal, along with Samuel and Grant, the blond haired man.

"How is the weighing going?" Kant asked Victor.

"Good sire. We are making sure that the buckets all weigh about 1 kilograms (2.21lbs) each. Not counting the bucket." he replied.

"Good." Kant replied. It took some time, but eventually there were about 150 buckets stacked together in a pyramid shape. The craftsmen then all form a sort of horizontal line, all facing Kant.

"Well done everyone. With this charcoal in place, we can now move onto conducting second series of tests of the steam engine.

We have only one goal today. That is to calculate the horsepower of the steam engine prototype. Along the way, we will also be recording the time it takes to reach that the maximum temperature, along with the amount of coal we need in terms of weight to get there.

It was the reason why I brought this 15 second hour glass. Though not perfect, it is the best tool we have for now. Now before he do so, does anyone have any questions?" Victor instantly raised his hand.

"Sire, I am not sure what 'horsepower' even is. Though I think I know what it could entail, could you please elaborate?" Victor questioned.

"Of course. Horsepower is a unit of measurement to calculate the output of power a steam engine has. We can calculate it for this steam engine by multiplying the area of the piston, which is 12², by the piston speed. We then multiply by 7, then divide by 33,000.

However, 1 horsepower does not equate to the power of a single horse as 1 horsepower is equivalent to 1/15 of the power a horse could do at the maximum. I picked the name horsepower because it can give people a general understanding of what it is." he answered.

Any other questions?" Kant asked. Samuel, the Peterson with the beard, raised his hand this time.

"Why do we need to measure the RPM if we don't need it to calculate horsepower?"

"Oh we do. We need the RPM to calculate the mean piston speed. The formula for is the number of strokes, which is 4 for this steam engine, multiplied by 2 and the RPM of the flywheel. Then you divide the number by 12, and you have your piston speed."

"What is the horsepower of this steam engine?"

"Currently I calculated it to have around 0.61 horsepower. For the first test, it is not a bad start, but what I would like to achieve is around 6 or 7 horsepower today, and 26 at least by the end of the month. Any other questions?" Several raised their hands. Kant picked Mr. Grant this time.

"Sire, if horses offer more power that this steam engine, then what is the point of pursuing this technology?" he asked. The several who rose their hands nodded at his question.

"Well Mr. Grant, the steam engine has two advantages. First, it can be easily manufactured compared to horses. Where for an new horse to be added, you need to wait for one to grow, whereas with a steam engine, you can just build one.

The second advantage is that a steam engine could keep on continually running for long periods of time as long as you continuously feed it a fuel source, which when bought in bulk, is generally cheaper than food to be fed to horses.

The third advantage is that a steam engine has the potential to improve dramatically. Remember, this is our first time making a revolutionary machine. It will take a few iterations to get it right. Do I make myself clear?"

"Yes sire." Mr. Grant replied.

"Good. Anymore?" he asked. This time, nobody was keen on raising their hands. Kant took the silence as a no, and started the testing.


Through the open window everyone can see that the sky has turned orange. The craftsmen were all seated on their chairs, waiting for Kant who was sitting on the front. On his hand was a clipboard with a beige paper, filled with numbers inside of a table.

To his left, he had a blank piece of paper, used to calculate the horsepower. He was busy calculating the average horsepower achieved, as well as the average time to get there, along with the average amount of coal that needed to be burned.

He continued to write on the paper until he was done. By that point, it was covered in various numbers and letters made out of the pencil graphite. He turned it around, and wrote 4 numbers on it. Kant stands up, ready to address the craftsmen.

"Gentlemen, I thank you for your patience with me today. You will all be handsomely compensated for your time here." He held up the piece of paper with the table on it, allowing everyone to see it.

"So far, we had done 8 tests, each taking about 6 hours to complete." he then picks up the other piece of paper, looking at the numbers he written.

"According to my results, it takes about 2 kilograms of charcoal to boil the water up to 350°C (662°F) at the average time of 25 minutes, accounting human errors.

With the high temperatures and pressures achieved, the steam engine managed to run at an average RPM of 280. Taking the values into account, according to my calculations, this leaves us with a horsepower of about 6.11 horsepower." Kant places the paper down. The room itself was silent.

"Is that it sire?"

"For today, yes. It is getting late, and you all should better get home now. But in terms of the steam engine, we are far from done. This engine is still not powerful enough to be economical, so a few tweaks will have to be made in order for it to be viable." Kant said.

"So when will the next test take sire?"

"I am not sure Mr. Samuel. I need to first create the blueprints. I will inform you all once that day comes." he replied with a smile. With that, the craftsmen all got up and left. Kant himself decided to stay for a while longer.

He walks over to the closet and grabs a piece of white cloth. He then back to the testing room. The engine appears dirty from the burning of the charcoal. Taking a deep breath, he kneels down and started to clean the furnace.