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About suicidejunkie

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    Sr. Spacecraft Engineer

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  • Location Reentry fireball to the east of KSC
  1. I launched a mining rig from Minmus, modified with a colonization module on top for what will hopefully be my first successful interplanetary journey. I managed to get an intercept with Dres just before leaving Minmus SoI, but then later discovered that my velocity at Dres is going to be a few km/s too high. Construction of the rescue ship began before the victim had left Kerbin's SoI. Just an LV-N, 10000 LF, a capsule, a claw, and lifesupport. About a RL year and 200 game days later, they've just rendezvoused and started transferring supplies over.
  2. Periapsis Altitude Warning.
  3. Making a high velocity launchpad out of a brick of SRBs is a classic. I like giving my rockets a starting TWR of 1.0, and igniting them at the speed of sound. If you want precision maneuvers with SRBs, you'll need to include separators so you can jettison the still-thrusting booster at the right time and get large but arbitrary amounts of dV. Having a 24-pack of separatrons that fire in pairs for balance can allow you to make small, controlled correction burns as well.
  4. The claw is a stock part. It is a round-nosed cylinder which opens up with four grabby fingers when deployed. Touch the center of it to another vehicle to grab on.
  5. I've got a matching pair of Absentminded Rescue Mission Returning With The Seat Empty Commemorative Coins. And we can't forget the Recursive Rescue Mission Triple Crown.
  6. Anything built in the VAB/SPH tends strongly towards commonality and regularity and symmetry. I find that for real variety, the KAS Screwdriver and a junkyard or crash site in the wilderness is key.
  7. Today I finished my pair of polar omnicomm towers. Enough antennas to target every planet in the system, plus the active vessel. And since they are sitting on the actual pole of Kerbin, they provide constant line of sight forever with no drift. The original plans were nice and symmetrical: The actual assembly process at the south pole with KAS was not quite as planned. Extra ladders were needed, and a few parts were ultimately proved unnecessary when they exploded after being dropped. And, despite some wacky wobbling when some dishes clipped into each other, nobody died: The engineering team got a bit lazier for the second station at the north pole, when they realized they didn't need to build a tower since they already had a great big platform to attach the dishes to after landing:
  8. Is the stock thing a fundamental decision? KAS has the great feature of being a useful extra option without being overpowered. Anything but the simplest stack you build by hand will be of significantly lower quality than something built in the VAB and shipped, but you can still do it if you want or need to. For example: Laughable alignment of thrust and CoM, frightening fuel balance changes during the ascent, fragile and unwieldy. But lovingly and individually hand-assembled from discarded parts by a munar artisan who desperately wanted to return to orbit.
  9. Or, the engineers who built the accelerometer remembered being told that centrifugal force isn't real, and designed the instrument to only report on real forces. That's why it is so expensive.
  10. You'll need some self-sustaining outposts, at least in terms of fuel and lifesupport resources, as many places as possible. Locally-stationed rescue craft would be a good idea for prompt response from the space patrol. Since you're eschewing EL, I'd suggest that you at least have a local scrapyard where you can disassemble and store old and spare rocket parts initially delivered from Kerbin. You'll be able to build new ships on site and on demand using KAS, or repair moderate damage without having to send for a completely new ship.
  11. I swapped to Whiplash + Reliant and added oxidizer to the fuel tanks... and my SSTO plane still SSTOs. LV30 isn't underpowered; all the other engines are simply more OP.
  12. I like those units. For comparison, my car gets about 15000 m/$
  13. Can't you just place things against the side of your helmet and then let them drift away? I used to do that all the time in space.
  14. You can use physics warp up to 4x by holding meta (shift/alt depending on OS) as you time accelerate. You could alternatively not worry too much, and timewarp faster, then re-capture the part before reentry. Does the contract tick off 'obtaining the part' when you switch to the part using '[' and ']' ?
  15. I don't follow. All of my comms have to reach KSC as well. Every one of those links is a probe with an omni and some solar. Sometimes a parachute or RTG for the newer models. Signals from the southeast shore of booster bay will relay across the mountain peaks towards the south, hit the south pole, and then run along a chain of relays sitting on the ice cap 12.5 km apart until they reach the actual south pole. 25km out from the south pole are a set of four 50m tall towers with relays on top that relay the signal to a repeater landed on the south pole of Mun. This repeater then beams the signal back to the northern continent of Kerbin. At some times during the day, that is direct to KSC, but other times it can only reach a relay on the far side. The far side relay bounces signals to mountain tops down through the desert, then to a special pair of low-altitude relays for jumping the channel, then back up to the mountains, finishing with a stop at Mt WhoopsTooShort, which then beams the signal into KSC. One thing you will need to do is have a separator between the main body of the tower and the active core with the relays and sensors. My towers are 50m tall, but act as if they're transmitting from the base. The actual transmitter is a HECS core with relays and RTGs sitting in the bowl at the top formed from struts and panels. Note; according to the math, if you want a single tower at the pole to get LoS on the matching pole of mun, you'll need a tower 350m tall. Moving out 25km, you'll need only 30m tall towers, but more of them. I chose 50m tall so that four towers placed on the cardinal directions would give constant contact. If you want to get constant contact with any other body in the star system, you don't need a tower at all, just long range dishes on both poles.