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About Hodo

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    SSTO Space Plane Designer

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  1. My only suggestion would be to use Duna's atmosphere to slow you down and bring you into orbit. Atmospheric braking is a real thing and is used to cut the actual delta velocity expenditure down to a more manageable level. For Duna set your target PE for 20-30km with a good heat shield at the front of your craft, and some kind of fins at the rear to keep your craft stable during the maneuver. Then all you have to do after you complete your skip through the atmosphere is a simple adjustment burn which will be MUCH less than the actual deceleration burn to get in orbit normally. I use it to this day on all planets with atmospheres.
  2. A simple fix for that aircraft you posted kiwinanday would be add more forward sweep to the wings. This will have two effects. 1- it will move your CoL closer to your CoM. 2- it will actually help your supersonic performance. This will be more pronounced if you use FAR. And this VERY old design This fighter was STUPID agile, and was surprisingly easy to land.
  3. I havent done anything like the OP, but I have accidentally walked away from the keyboard to find my SSTO is now on its way to a stable orbit around the Mun... instead of a 250km orbit around Kerbin. So that lead to a revolutionary design for me... a rescue craft.
  4. I think you misunderstood me, but I wasnt that clear. I dont mean to say not to worry about it, but it shouldnt be the primary thing you dwell on. If you lose the fun trying to make the perfect aircraft, balanced and everything you will find it being more of a job than a game. Sometimes you can find some interesting designs that actually work quite well but on paper shouldnt work.
  5. Question about mods. I run two major mods, AJE and FAR. AJE just adjusts the jet engine performance to a more realistic level. So no more turbojets to space. Heck you are lucky to get a jet over mach 2.5 on most jet engines and they wont work much past 15km ASL anyway. I am asking because I am interested in making something for this challenge. I haven't made a decent cargo SSTO in a while, and I used to be REAL good at it. But this is the beginning of the project I plan on adapting to run this challenge with. It launches like a rocket and lands like a plane.
  6. Eve, the purple Kerbal Eater.... I love hate that planet. I have been there 3 times, and only landed 1 probe there, which I never bothered to recover. But the thing with Eve is the atmosphere scales completely differently than Kerbin, and is MUCH thicker so an upscaled version of something that worked there before may not be the correct answer. The smaller craft may have only JUST barely worked before, but the larger, more fragile and heavier parts will not. You have to look at the increased surface area of the larger craft, thus higher drag, and higher friction so more heat. So for a larger craft you will have to change your decent profile to come in slower and shallower than the smaller craft. This why many landers on Eve are your standard run of the mill pod landers.
  7. For me, without posting a dozen pictures that I have already posted elsewhere here. It was the discovery of the "Cranked Arrow" delta wing design. I found that is by far the most useful wing design for SSTO planes and just high performance aircraft in general when dealing with FAR.
  8. First question are you running mods? FAR or anything like that? And the others have pretty much hit the nail on the head with the problems most common on re-entry designs. A useful mod to download is RCSBuild aid. It gives you a second indicator for dry CoM, which tells you where your CoM is when tanks are empty.
  9. And back to making combat aircraft... F-114 Fast, agile, inexpensive, and has supercruise. What else can you ask for out of a single engine light fighter.
  10. I had two vehicles that were probably my most useful designs to date. This crane that I had to use to load the cargo into my craft during a challenge so not to despawn the craft. And this refueling tanker truck. Yep that is 4 orange tanks to refuel that beast.
  11. I like these two.. they look great. Not sure how they would handle in my install, with AJE and FAR. But definitely something I may mimic and alter so it does work in my install. Thank you for the inspiration.
  12. When dealing with large cargo aircraft, you have to account for the cargo's CoM being different than the CoM of the aircraft. Like this.. It hauled two of these into orbit. The CoM was pretty easy on those.. they were centered on the cargo. And had very little effect on the crafts CoM. BUT... some of my earlier cargo monsters. That one was tricky.. The cargo CM was WAY far forward of the CM of the craft. While lighter than anything that craft normally hauled into orbit, it was not the way I liked it. Still ended up using way more fuel to use brute force to over come the shift in mass.
  13. The whole debate over COL vs COM discussion really depends on several factors, most of which dont apply here to KSP. When you fly with FAR installed it does make a HUGE difference over the stock "aerodynamics". And a supersonic aircraft is going to behave differently than a subsonic aircraft designed for just that. I know some of my most successful designs were designed strictly for one thing and did that ONE thing VERY well. Like this old design.. It was a switchblade wing design... worked extremely well for speed runs to orbit. And I have designs that are "combat" designs that were VERY good at their mission. So again... if you design it for one job it will be VERY good at that one job. Dont worry about the CoL vs CoM, worry if it can at least do the job it is meant to do.
  14. I just want to say... This thread is nothing but win! So awesome you have done this and your work is outstanding. Great job.
  15. Well I take a break and I see so many "interesting" designs pop up. Some of them are real works of art others are amazing feats of engineering. But just to say... I still got it. Who needs jets for an SSTO plane. And the nuke powered one... And because my HARM industries wouldnt be complete without a combat craft. All of which are built in FAR, with AJE, and have NO issues reaching 100km stable orbit.