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About sevenperforce

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    Capsule Communicator

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  1. So, let's see...if I stack eight 16-kerbal pods on end, slap a short XL tank and a Mammoth on the tail, and drop it onto the island runway, I get...1795 points? Hold my beer.
  2. My personal fantasy would be a parallel-staged two-Raptor-Vac SHLV with 2-4 Falcon Heavy side boosters, with methalox gas thrusters for landing. It could lift an extra-large crew capsule, cargo, or an aux refueling tank, depending on its mission. Think mini-ITS with the nose cut off.
  3. And here you go, mission concluded! Not bad for my first time to Jool. Scoring: Build an SLS Block 1B +25 Fly-bye! +16 Ore scanner! +5 Photographer +15 Power-crazy +10 Science!!! +20 Probe Extravaganza! +100 Early Concepts +50 LaytheDIRECT! +15 By my count, that's 256 points! And I didn't even need to use the Trajectories mod.
  4. And here's the second leg! Waited for a good launch window and set up the node. Good enough for a first pass. EUS restart, and... Full throttle! Injection burn complete. Shut down two EUS engines; using residuals to make trajectory adjustments. Close enough! EUS jettison. First shot of Laythe Clipper flying free! Coast period nearly complete...coming in to the Jool SOI. Setting up my node. Decided not to aerocapture. Burning to insertion. Very eccentric orbit, but I'm in! My plan is to use very small burns at the high Jool apoapsis to get some assists. Setting up the first Laythe encounter/assist. Approaching first Laythe encounter! Correction to obtain Laythe assist. First Laythe encounter! That's encounter 1! Orbit is still very eccentric so I'll get another assist to bring me down into the plane. There's my Tylo assist! Swinging around Tylo. Couldn't resist picking up some science. The Skipper is still awfully heavy at this point...lots of sub-sats to deploy. The Tylo assist put me on a Val encounter for co-Laythe orbit insertion. Mid-course correction burn at Val. Note the four RCS clusters, as well as the Laythe lander on the near side and the Laythe Orbiter on the far side. Second encounter: First cubesat away! Once-around again for another encounter. Cubesat 2 deployed: Another loop around Jool. Gonna go ahead and deploy the orbiter. Just after deployment. All systems engaged! Firing up the engines for the orbital insertion. Glamour shot. Orbit achieved! Gonna drop another cubesat. What a surprise, right? I'll drop another one -- the one with the atmospheric sampler -- and put this one in orbit. Start of the orbital ion insertion burn. At this angle it looks like Laythe is being illuminated by the glow of the Dawn. Pretty neat, huh? Halfway through my xenon; should have no trouble making a few passes to get atmospheric samples later on. Now with all the cubesats away, you can see the different orbits. Lined up for the fifth encounter: With some course corrections, I managed to get a double encounter. Sixth encounter! With such a close periapsis, I'll use this to deploy my lander. My lander has no engines of its own so I'll need to put it on an aerobraking trajectory using the engines on the main probe, then release it, then burn in the opposite direction to keep from aerobraking the Laythe Skipper itself. Deployed! Brought my periapsis back up out of the atmosphere. This will be my final encounter for now. Probe approaching Laythe. No control and no engines...let's hope I have good passive aerodynamic stability in this design! Love seeing Jool on the left... Blazing fast. Looks like the entry heating is starting to decrease. Is my trajectory good? Dropped the heat shield. Having this battery on the bottom really helped keep the COM forward. Tumbling with Joolrise on the horizon. Chutes away! Or chute, in this case. Doing a little science on the slow descent. Nearing the surface. I tested this lander on Kerbin but you never know if the gravity and atmosphere are going to work out properly. Moment of truth... Success! I only have battery power on this probe, so I'll have to get things done quickly. Surface scanning... Temperature scan... Seismic scan... Pressure scan, and that's it! So, that does it! I decided to go ahead and put the Clipper in a Joolgrazing parking orbit in case I want to squeeze out a few more encounters. Until then, sayonara! (Note Laythe peeking out in the background.)
  5. Looking to be listing just slightly...
  6. Good on you for wanting to improve it. What are you looking for, exactly? Risky suicide burns? Landings without engines or landing gear? Something else entirely? It's something to consider. If you're looking for risky suicide burns, you can make it a God-and-Heinlein challenge. "Build a VTOL SSTO capable of taking at least one Kerbal to orbit and returning to land on its tail, intact." I'd recommend disallowing jet engines, though; I have a RAPIER-and-nuke VTOL SSTO that can do Duna. Your score could be the weight of the LV divided by the number of Kerbals it can take to orbit.
  7. So...the challenge is to send a Kerbal to an apoapsis greater than or equal to 100 km, then land without chutes and without breaking any parts? Are you scoring it in any way? What's the challenge in that, exactly? There are dozens of ways to do this. Most people can land a liquid rocket on its tail easily enough, or you can slaps wings and landing gear on it. Heck, you can ditch in the water without landing gear pretty easily.
  8. I have it on fairly good authority that SpaceX will never consider plumbing a pad for both methalox and kerolox, but I don't see why they wouldn't. A Raptor upper stage on a F9 or FH booster would be badass.
  9. Yep.
  10. Yeah, this is the part I'm wondering about. Seems like plasma impingement on the engine bells would be problematic.
  11. LOL, no, that's not what I meant either. A nominal Falcon 9 first stage ASDS landing uses two burns: an entry burn and a landing burn. Reportedly, the New Glenn will only need a landing burn.
  12. I thought there was virtually no sunlight on Eve's surface.
  13. I used Tweakscale without penalty earlier.
  14. I mean a burn during entry. "There are also some significant differences between the vehicles, most notably the aerodynamic control surfaces used to help guide New Glenn's first-stage in for a landing. Reportedly, that negates the need for a re-entry deceleration burn."
  15. Precisely. We didn't go to the moon because we had a Saturn V; we built a Saturn V in order to go to the moon.