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Everything posted by ManEatingApe

  1. Here's a cheap and simple entry using only 2 SRBs and a little monopropellant. 7 parts total and 5,180 funds. SRBs are difficult to aim, so if you can't aim the ship, aim the KSC instead! By warping to a Duna transfer window, then waiting until the KSC is pointing the right direction, you can get within a few m/s of a Duna intercept. A place anywhere RCS port then provides the fine control for a decent transfer. (Astute players will note that, strictly speaking, the RCS thruster is unnecessary, as you can just nudge the capsule with a Kerbal on EVA. However I was a little lazy, so perhaps so another cunning poster can try that approach!) Interestingly, the heat and impact tolerance of a Mk1 pod is so good that a heat shield is not required for an Duna aero-capture and a single Mk16 parachute will do (even if you have the misfortune to land at high elevation)
  2. Very clever workaround, adjusting the maneuver precisely to the dV remaining!
  3. Jeb was sent off to Moho in an asparagus staged chemical only tug. Once in Moho orbit, a tiny lander consisting of only a Command Chair, Oscar B and a pair of Spiders landed and returned to the mothership. By chance, our re-entry just overshot the KSC by a little Full album available here That's another 2 building upgrades unlocked. Just Eve and Gilly left to do! Interestingly cash has become an issue, as the career game doesn't like the order I'm visiting planets, so I'm not getting any contracts for unvisited planets. I'll probably have to do an extra cash generating mission after Eve, in order to actually afford the building upgrades.
  4. Finally got around to my Jool 5 and had an absolute blast. For this mission I continued my K.S.C. theme: K. Kerbals for all craft. S. Stock only. C. Chemical engines only, none of yer' fancy nukes or ions. The R&D building remained at level 2, however important tech upgrades were the Twin-Boar, Mainsail, Panther and Command Chair. To maximise dV the Tylo, Val, Bop and Pol landers were spartan; no luxuries such as reaction wheels. This meant that thrust had to be maintained at all times during descent to keep pointing the right way. This mostly worked very well (especially on Tylo where you almost always want to be accelerating) however there was the occasional mishap. There's a fair number of photos so I've broken them into spoilers below. A high level overview of the mission was: Aero-brake mothership directly into Lathe capture orbit. Detach Laythe spaceplane, descend and return. Bring mothership into parking orbit just outside Tylo orbit. Detach Tylo lander, descend and return, rendezvous with mothership. Detach Val lander, descend and return, rendezvous with mothership. Detach combined Bop & Pol lander, you get the idea... Return to Kerbin using our trusty Mk1 pod and heat shield to survive a jaunty re-entry speed of 4 km/s. Outbound Laythe Tylo Val Bop & Pol Inbound Complete album available here Summary After this mission I have 6 building upgrades available, and Eve, Gilly and Moho remaining. At some stage one of the upgrades will have to be a Level 3 R&D, as I don't fancy an Eve return without a Vector or Aerospike, but for now I think I'll try a chemical only Moho mission.
  5. @Tattiebogle Nice progress. I love the warts and all mission reporting. Apropos of nothing, your list of things to do is almost a haiku, tweaked it for you... I'm kinda tempted to make all my future update in haiku form now! Some pesky RL stuff is getting in the way of my Kerballing, but Jool 5 mission plotting is underway and I hope to have a mission report soon.
  6. @Wanderfound Neat challenge, I look forward to seeing what devious designs people can come up with! To get the ball rolling, I'm going to be a little cheeky and re-use a craft I made earlier for this challenge. Simple design, but not the most efficient as there's a little extra mass used for some science experiments in the service bay and some excess LF. 2,463 m/s dV in LKO (Sorry, don't have a photo of the ship's mass, you'll have to extrapolate ) Back at KSC (by way of Laythe)
  7. Nooooooo...don't do it! Nah, just kidding, to me KER feels like a minor convenience. A player of your experience is perfectly capable of calculating the dV figures in a spreadsheet (or a slide rule ) this just makes it quicker. OTOH the terror of not knowing if you're going to run out of fuel can be part of the fun! @GoSlash27 had the nice idea to upgrade the Tracking Station first, rather than the Launchpad. I like this alternative approach. Even staying within the 18 ton limit you should be able to make manned Duna with 2 or 3 launches docked together. That feels much more elegant than my brute force approach where I floundered around in interplanetary space for years!
  8. @jonny Nice work, cost and mass records in a single mission!
  9. Next instalment: Dres and Eeloo. Using just the basic parts from 90 science nodes and under, was able to combine both missions into a single launch within the 140 ton limit Tweaking the fuel flow - the Dres mission required less dV so we could plunder some fuel from it to reach LKO. The level 2 VAB provides basic actions groups, as a convenience "lights" are overridden to run all science experiments and "brakes" collects the results into the science container, so just 2 keystrokes handle all the science for each biome. Dres Approach Eeloo Flag Ceremony The return aero-brake from Eeloo exceeded 15g! Full Album Summary after 6 missions: Launch Pad Level 3 VAB Level 2 Tracking Station Level 2 Mission Control Level 2 Astronaut Complex Level 2 Research and Development Level 2 There wasn't enough cash to upgrade R&D to level 3, so I still have one building upgrade available. However I don't really feel restricted - the newly available 160 and 300 science nodes are powerful enough. Next up will be a Jool 5 mission.
  10. Here's the first part of my attempt. Interestingly science and funds are not an issue so far. The "World's First" awards provide plentiful cash and I feel that most of the planets can be visited using low-tech chemical engines (except Eve of course!) To begin with I created a fresh "Moderate" career and started a minimal Caveman using just 3 missions (details here) to unlock most of the nodes. The bulk of the science points came from a Minimus rover on the 3rd mission. The 4th mission was more interesting; a manned Mun return mission with Caveman restrictions. This was something I've never attempted before, as normally by the time you've unlocked the necessary nodes you've already nearly finished the Caveman. However before venturing further afield I really wanted to upgrade a building. Valentina successfully made it there and back again, allowing me to upgrade the Launch Pad to Level 2 and assemble this monstrosity: Despite the crude appearance it has 7,000 m/s dV in LKO. I budgeted: 1000 m/s for Kerbin -> Duna transfer 2,500 m/s for futzing around with orbits due to lack of maneuver nodes 3,500 m/s for Duna ascent, Duna -> Ike transfer and return journey By virtue of spending far too much time playing KSP I happen to know the 1st Duna transfer window time and velocity by heart, so even without patched conics the initial intercept attempt orbit was reasonably close. Some years and 1,900 m/s later, many carefully timed prograde, radially and normal burns resulted in a intercept! The rest of the mission was straightforward from that point. First landed on Duna and upgraded the Tracking Station to unlock patched conics. Next using our fancy new conics, landed on Ike and upgraded the Mission Control to provide maneuver nodes Finally returned to Kerbin and upgrade the VAB to level 2. Full Album here: To summarise, after 5 missions the building situation is: Launch Pad Level 2 Tracking Station Level 2 Mission Control Level 2 VAB Level 2 My current plan for the next stage of the challenge is to send concurrent missions to Dres and Eeloo (these planets are very similar so the exact same craft design should suffice) then unlock: Astronaut Complex Level 2 Launch Pad Level 3 Research and Development Levels 2 and 3 This will leave things in a good position to visit the Joolian system and the trickier inner system planets.
  11. Just for fun, built a SESSTLAB (Single Engine Single Stage to Laythe and Back). Hmm...might need to work on that acronym 32 tons on the runway, using a single RAPIER. Just under 2,500 m/s dV in LKO. The tried and tested K-E-K-K-J gravity assist sequence flings us to Jool for about 1,250 m/s total. A reverse Laythe gravity assist then captures us into Jool orbit cheaply. Quick tea break on Laythe... ...then off back home. We have 1,000 m/s remaining in LLO. Not enough for a direct return to Kerbin, however we can use the magic of Tylo to fling us out of the Jool system and drop our PE all the way down to Kerbin for about 700 m/s. Our Tylo PE was only 3.6 km; fortunately we didn't encounter any mountains! We're still going too quickly to aero-brake directly into Kerbin orbit, so we use a Kerbin gravity assist to slow down a little first. Then we can capture (just) on a 2nd pass and return to the KSC with an entire 5 units of Oxidiser left over (such extravagance!) Full album for the curious
  12. @sevenperforce Is a dual mode engine like the RAPIER ok? For crafts that manage to escape Kerbin you could have a separate leaderboard with AP above Kerbol
  13. Excellent, got it! That 1st interplanetary mission is going to be entertainingly tricky Although I'm formulating a cunning plan to make progression easier...
  14. Interesting challenge @5thHorseman might give it a try! So just checking that I understand the rules correctly, in the following scenario the upgrades would work like: Land on Mun (no upgrade for 1st body) Return from Mun (no upgrade as not a planet) Land on Minimus (hurray - upgrade right away, even before returning to Kerbin) Return from Minimus (no upgrade as not a planet) Land on Duna (yay - another upgrade) Return from Duna (congrats - another upgrade) ...and so on It can get a little tedious! FWIW sometime in the last few game updates the ability to run science experiments as a custom action group was added. The science container is also available so with 2 keystrokes you can run and collect all science. Still have to wait until level 3 VAB though...
  15. Our fledgling space program is off to a flying start, but has run into a minor issue - all our pilots are dead, missing or stuck in Kerbin orbit, drifting helplessly out of control. Somewhat understandably new recruits have become thin on the ground, colleagues are avoiding your gaze and there's a rumour that you're about to be demoted to assistant intern. You have ONE last mission to redeem yourself, go from zero to hero, and restore the space program to glory. Using the limited funds, science, engineers and scientists at hand rescue all 3 of our vagabond pilots and 2 innocent tourists then return them safely to Kerbin. Instructions Download the linked save file into a fresh game of your choice. Save Valentina, Jedtrey, Macbert, Karen and Nedcan Notes Spend wisely - you have funds for a modest craft and enough science to unlock 1 more node. Act quickly - some of our pilots may be on an escape trajectory... Other craft may have a slight tendency to explode during re-entry. Despite all precautions some craft may contain nuts. Rules Wheaton rule - No cheating or debug menu shenanigans Stock only (with the exception that Audio, Visual and informational only mods like KER are fine) No hiring any new pilots - in this scenario, all applicants have been scared off and are citing implausible new careers such as "Manatee Whisperer".(However you might be able to retrieve some pilots before sending the rescue mission.) Your craft can separate into multiple craft after launch, but only 1 launch is allowed Creative use of EVA jetpacks is encouraged but limit yourself to max 1 refill from pods Submit screenshots or a video documenting your adventure There will be 2 leaderboards ranked by cost and weight respectively, and also special spot prizes for especially Kerbal or creative solutions ...really just have fun though! Thanks to @jonpfl for letting me borrow and tweak his save game from this thread. My own entry is here: Leaderboard: ? ? ?
  16. Either stick something heavy on the end you want to point forward (usually a heatshield or engine) or better yet add some fins to the back. (You can check COM in the VAB when you're assembling a craft) For something as small as your pod a pair of basic fins should be enough. You want it to resemble a dart - heavy at the front, fins at the back.
  17. Good news - the situation is not that bad, and it'll be fun to rescue each craft. TL;DR We can use each pilot's EVA thrusters to help their situation. So let's triage, we have 3 ships in a variety of stable, sub-orbital and escape trajectories, each drifting out of fuel. Valentina ("Untitled Space Craft") - currently in Mun's SOI but on a escape trajectory of both the Mun and Kerbin. If we let Valentina escape Kerbin's SOI it will be a real nuisance to go rescue her from Solar orbit. Solution: Go on EVA Engage RCS and thrust retrograde Either capture into Kerbin orbit or Mun orbit. Kerbin orbit will make future rescue easier but make sure your PE is outside the Mun's influence - you don't want to get ejected later. We'll go rescue Valentina later - she can float happily in her suit until then Jedtrey ("Untitled Space Craft") - in a 73km x 176km Kerbin orbit with no fuel. Solution: Wait until the ship is at AP Go on EVA with Jedtrey Let go of the ladder and engage RCS Headbutt ..erm nudge the pod retrograde until your PE is below 70km (anything < 70km will do but the lower you can manage the faster it will be) Warp until you're in the atmosphere, then point retrograde (the blunt end of your ship first for maximum drag) Use 4 x phsyics warp to speed up the process Each pass through the atmosphere will gradually lower your AP and PE - eventually you'll re-enter - this will take many many passes so be patient Macbert (Passenger 1) - on a 66 km x 659 km sub-orbital trajectory. Hmm...since we're sub-orbital our orbit will eventually decay and we'll re-enter - however your craft looks like its COM is too far forward - it will be stable pointy end first and this could cause problems (exploding). If Passenger1 keeps exploding then go on EVA and nudge into a stable orbit (PE > 70km). The order I'd suggest is: Stabilise Valentina's orbit Stabilise Macbert's orbit (or re-enter) Rescue Jedtrey - he in turn can then go rescue Valentina and Macbert.
  18. Great! Once you've uploaded drop the link here or PM me (whichever you prefer)
  19. @jonpfl Your situation has the potential to be turned into a fun challenge! Would you mind uploading your save file to somewhere like Dropbox, so we could take a look
  20. That made me laugh out loud - I got some strange looks from people nearby! I love the idea of anti-records to inspire creativity. There's so many different great approaches in this thread. I'm also pretty sure we can improve on the normal records too - a low mass mission < 30 tons should be doable. Also by using only 5219 m/s @jonny showed that an SSTBAB (Single Stage to Burbarry and Back) is within the realms of possibility for anyone crazy enough to try. Thanks for the tip! Just to check you mean go K-E-K-K-J-E -> To infinity and beyond? (I'm also following your gravity assist conversation with interest)
  21. Here's the promised primitive penny-pinching entry suitable for even the most cost conscious of space programs - a mere 16,917 funds. None of yer fancy nuclear or ion engines, just good 'ol fashioned chemical engines. Now it may have taken a teensy little bit longer than some other entries, some 23 years erm...I mean centuries, but who's in a hurry right? Outbound journey used the standard Kerbin -> Eve -> Kerbin -> Kerbin -> Jool route culminating in an AP a millennia away! A modest 82 m/s burn then flipped our orbit retro-solar and gave a Jool intercept dropping our PE to the same as Burbarry's. Now for the tricky part. The relative velocities of the Goliath and Against the Grain were still over 3,400 m/s. Normally you could use Kerbin or Eve gravity assists to slow down, but when you're going the wrong way these are much less effective - it would take dozens to slow down enough. Instead a lightweight barebones rescue tug (no reaction wheel, batteries or antenna) packing 7 km/s dV rendezvoused with Burbarry and then caught up again with the Against the Grain It was barely enough, still had to use all the Jetpack propellant A 3rd Jool assist kicked us into a wonderfully eccentric Kerbol orbit. It's only barely the right way around. Left alone we'll plunge into the sun but our orbit is so wonky that it's cheap to fix that. From there it was straightforward to use a Kerbin assist to drop our PE A relatively tame aerobrake at 4.2 km/s Hey, anyone visit Dres while we were gone? Summary: Cost 16,917 funds, mass 70 tons, 8 gravity assists, mission duration 2,304 years. Craft was completely stock but I used Precise Maneuver and Better Time Warp mods (for obvious reasons ) Route Details: Outbound Kerbin -> Eve -> Kerbin -> Kerbin -> Jool (1078 + 20 + 4 + 117 = 1219 m/s) Retro-solar burn at AP then reverse Jool and Kerbin assists (82 + 20 = 102 m/s) Rendezvous with Burbarry (7,600 m/s total including jetpack) Inbound Jool -> Kerbin -> Kerbin (99 + 159 + 11 = 269 m/s) Full Mission Album Download Craft File
  22. @jonny Fantastic rescue, wonderful use of gravity assists and a truly Kerbal aerobrake into Kerbol capture! I had a crazy dream that just using EVA it might be possible to go Eve -> Eve ... -> Eve -> Jool and flip Burberry's orbit without needing any vehicle at all Probably not enough precision in the jetpack, but I really like your idea of bumping up Burberry's orbit as much as possible.
  23. @Physics Student Fun challenge! Nice work on using Jool to completely flip your orbit - I hadn't even considered that was possible. Went for the brute force and ignorance approach: 36,000 m/s dV, packed into 484 tons, costing 216,084 funds. Total mission time 1 year 93 days. Burbarry has enough dV in his jetpack to make a Kerbin intercept - I found this made it easier to rendezvous and saved about 2000 m/s dv as I was able to use my LKO velocity. The Catcher's Mitt lay in wait in LKO until Burbarry entered Kerbin's SOI. No subtlety here - just a large stack of liquid fuel tanks and nukes A few days past Kerbin's SOI, Burbarry rendezvoused with the rescue shuttle Half an orbit later, back at Kerbin Burbarry hopped into the rescue pod left in orbit earlier and was back at the KSC in no time Full mission album Download Craft file @Cpt Kerbalkrunch You complete lunatic! Using only chemical engines was an impressive feat. Stay tuned - I'm currently trying a cheapskate approach using chemical engines only. Using the K-E-K-K-J route you can get kicked out deep into the expanse for about 1,200 m/s dV. You can then flip your orbit really cheaply - however @Spricigo you're dead right about how ineffective gravity assist are when you're going retrograde. 5 reverse Eve assists barely dented my orbit, so my velocity relative to Bubarry was still 3,400 m/s. Back to the drawing board for now..
  24. If you're careful you could manage a round trip to Duna for about 3,200 m/s, just sayin'...
  25. No worries, will this do? Same simple ascent profile as before, point nose at 17.5° initially then leave it. Stage the sparks and nukes at maximum air breathing speed. Keep the nose pointing up until LF/O is exhausted, then lower nose slowly so that we "surf" just behind AP until orbit 60 kN of thrust from the nuke versus of craft mass of 13 tons gives a Mun TWR of over 2.5 making a regular landing we have some fuel to spare so let's see if we can liven things up a little. I hope we remembered to set the parking brake... To take off Bob had to perform the world's trickiest 3 point turn - those driving lessons paid off handsomely! Many many aero-braking passes later, back at KSC 502 science / 21.385 tons on runway = a score of 23.5 Full Album Link to Craft file @AeroGav Your designs aren't fat - they're curvaceous! Seriously though, I'm impressed how much you can get to orbit with such a low TWR