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About Northstar1989

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  1. So, there has been a lot of excitement in the past few years about certain companies working on new, modern, ultra-large cargo airships- most notably the Aeroscroft designs, the largest of which may be able to lift 450-500 tons! I thought this was awesome, and very Kerbal somehow- especially because with Airships the "Build It Bigger!" principle really does apply- particularly thanks to the Square-Cube Law (which in this case means that for an airship with a given envelope thickness the total mass of the envelope only increases with the square of the dimensions, whereas the enclosed volume increases with the cube of the dimensions)- meaning that larger airships have relatively higher lifting-capacities thanks to needing to devote relatively less mass to the envelope material compared to their size... Awesomely, Wikipedia even specifically mentions aerostats (balloons, blimps, etc.) as beneficiaries of the Square-Cube Law in its page on the subject. Also, check out this Popular Mechanics article on the subject: Note that the Square-Cube-Law also helps airships resist being pushed around by wind a bit- as larger airships present relatively less Surface Area for wind to act on. The problem still grows in absolute, though not relative, terms however- so an awareness of which way the wind is facing, large rudders and other control-surfaces, and taking off with the airship pointed parallel to the wind is still extremely important in most situations... Finally, see this Telegraph UK article on the return of airships. It's somewhat outdated, but provides a bit more historical context... Regards, Northstar
  2. O.90/0.75, aka the "default settings" are MOST realistic of those named here (I always laugh a little inside when I see people crying REALISM and then making things UN-realustic because they don't understand how real physics work) although the perhaps 92 or 93% vac occlusion might be a little closer to reality... Communications signals can indeed pass through a certain amount of solid matter (just think of getting a cellphone signal inside any building not made with a metal frame- metal creates a "Gaussian Cage" that prevents most signals from getting through such buildings) and just as importantly, they can DIFFRACT around objects to a certain degree. The comms signals in the game may appear to be straight lines that are passing through mountains, but really they are DIFFRACTING around those mountains rather than passing through them... I'm not 100% sure what the atmo modifier does, but OBVIOUSLY the comms signals have a certain ability to pass through the atmosphere. After all, they have to pass through it in the first place to reach any vessel or relay satellite from the KSC (which is on the ground, BELOW the atmosphere), and how do you think remote-control planes work in real life? It would be absolutely ridiculous, and completely unrealistic, if you had to set up a Probe Control Point in at least Low Kerbin Orbit just to control any unmanned vessel in the game, and if probes were totally un-controllable inside the atmosphere of Kerbin or any other planet. After all, right now any real-life rocket is in constant communication with the ground all the way up to Low Earth Orbit... So why shouldn't comm signals be able to pass back through a limited amount of atmosphere again after leaving it, if they had to pass through it on the way up? Regards, Northstar
  3. Two words: Morse Code. It wouldn't take long for a pair of species on planets within such close visual range of each other to figure out that if they built a large enough array of mirrors (something seceral km in diameter) they could signal each other with a sim0le mathematical code. Since language and mathematical codes inherently contains certain principles refardless of culture of origin, such a code would doubtless soon by translated by the other planet. A system of two-way communication between the civilizations would not take long to form at all. Of course, the chances of two sentient species arising at the exact same time and rate like that is virtually nil. Doubtless one sentient species would arise millions of years (which in geological time and the history of life is the blink of an eye- trust me on this, I'm a Biologist) before such a species would have otherwise formed on the other planets, and colonized the other worlds if they bore life long before any other sentient species would have had the chance to rise up. And with that ecological niche filled in, it is highly likely no other sentient species would later evolve on the colonized planet... The only way two sentient species could ever evolve in such close proximity would be if the first planet to evolve sentient life possessed some insurmountable barrier (such as the lack of certain elements in the planetary crust) to interplanetary spaceflight in that system... Regards, Northstar
  4. That's more-or-less what I'm looking for, and the visuals look reasonable. How's the poly-count? How are the colliders? Could you maybe work with rspeed (who seems to really know what he's doing) to try and bring down the poly-count as low as possible, and make sure the colliders are right? Also, what are the internal dimensions? Could you download the model currently in use by the Mass Driver mod and compare the internal dimensions to make sure any rocket that could fit through the 2.5 meter sized mass driver ring of the old model (the one without a rescaleFactor less or greater than 1) will still be able to fit through your ring, for backwards-compatibility reasons? To be on the safe side, maybe even add 1 or 2% to the internal dimensions in case an error was made in measurement or the colliders are slightly different... Finally, would it be possible to upload the model in .mu format for me to test integrating into the next update of the mod? Ideally, an upload now so I can get started testing and eventually provide feedback, and an upload when you and rspeed have come up with a finsl version you're both happy with as a candidate for inclusion into the mod... Regards, Northstar
  5. Makes sense. What I meant by "undesirable effects" by the way is related to precisely that- the magnetic forces grow as you get closer to the surface of a coil. In a system with four current coils at right angles, however, you get highly undesirable effects if the payload drifts DIAGONALLY towards a corner with no coil. On the other hand, in a continuous tube, there is no direction the payload can drift off-center in where the magnetic field strength does not change uniformly. The actual job of centering the payload, on the other hand, is accomplished by a small iron electromagnet in the payload itself in the StarTram design (if I had the coding expertise and I didn't think players would find it a huge pain in the ass, I would add inline parts to the Mass Driver mod that go on the payload itself and are required for the Mass Driver to work on a payload...). I am unsure how it works exactly, but needless to say it works with a continuous-coil mass driver model and has nothing to do with having four distinct current coils around the edge of the mass driver...
  6. Ahhh, Katateochi- loved your Constellation style Duna mission YouTube video! Ever since I've been trying to do one myself... My current goal is to do one using the stock CommNet system and ISRU, with my own style and music choices of course (it will probably not be nearly as interesting or exciting as your video, though- and a few of the same songs will be featured I liked them so much...) I'll be playing around with Probe Control Points a bit in the test-run (I plan to use a 2-Kerbal lander with only 2 pilots on the mission, and 6 crew. So the 2 pilots will remotely guide the lander to Duna orbit, rendezvous and docking with the Kopernicus by being the first to ascend back to orbit from the surface base and guiding subsequent flights), so I'll let you know how my messing around with Probe Control Points goes if you're still interested... Regards, Northstar
  7. I thought this seemed very Kerbal, and hope you guys enjoy watching it: Regards, Northstar
  8. Pictures are always appreciated if you're trying to help other Kerbal engineers figure out how to position their payloads... On a different note- I'm still looking for any/all help in developing a model for this mod with a higher length:diameter ratio... The thread is in the OP if you're interested. Regards, Northstar
  9. That model actually looks more complex than the current one. Remember, KISS is the rule here. Also, I said LONGER, not larger (diameter is not the issue here- length is). Finally, mind if I ask what the reason is for the copper "boxes" around the edges when I am requesting a single coil? As I've said before, a StarTram-inspired mass driver would be composed of a single giant tube of *Aluminum* wire, not boxes interspersed around the edges of Copper wiring. While I'm not quite sure of the reason for use of Aluminum instead of Copper, this is the materials choice for the real-life StarTram proposal: so any model should have SILVER-GREY wires instead of brown ones... The use of a continuous coil I can explain, on the other hand- having distinct "boxes" around the edges creates undesirable behaviors if the payload deviates slightly from the center of the tube- thus a continuous coil is safer and more stable in addition to being more efficient with materials... All that is needed is a hollow tube with visible Aluminum coil textures on the inside, and some outside textures to make directionality clear (this is the part that really requires artistic talent). All the other details can be abstracted away by being presumed to be covered by the protective shell/structural elements around the exterior of the tube... Beale had the right basic idea for the shapr before, albeit the model still was more geometrically complex than necessary with its interspersed long rectangles instead of just a single smooth ring shape. I just need something like that with textures- textures are the part I really can't do on my own... Regards, Northstar
  10. G-force limits aren't necessary for plasma trails. I play without them enabled because KSP is far too glitchy to have mission success depend on whether the game creates jerky spurts in forces or is jerky with control-inputs (even with CAPS Lock on for more gentle control inputs, flying with the keyboard is kind of a mess) and I still get beautiful plasma trails with my spaceplanes and Mass Driver launches... Best luck with the shipyard Mass Driver! Don't forget that you can also use Mass Drivers on the surface of other planets and moons though. And, if you're playing with Extraplanetary Launchpads installed (you mentioned an orbital shipyard) then there's nothing stopping you from building a giant Mass Driver right on the surface of a planet, to launch the refined Ore you mined there to shipyards waiting in orbit, as well as fuel and Kerbals as necessary... Indeed this might turn out to be one of the turning-points for offworld industry in real life- when we establish enough infrastructure on the Moon and in orbit of it to start regularly shooting raw materials to orbit from its surface via Mass Driver... Regards, Northstar
  11. All I get is an error message when I try to view your album... Anyone else having this issue? Anyhow, low poly count is kind of critical- otherwise I might as well just merge together a bunch of the existing models and call it a day... Perhaps you'd find it easiest just to work off the existing model? It already has a wire texture- all you need to do is change its color from copper to that of aluminum, and then cover the interior of the ring with it. If you know how to model and have an artistic eye, I assume you could create a basic tube design by simplifying the existing model? (Removing the spools the wire texture is currently coiled around, for instance) I'd do it myself- but once again, I lack that artistic eye... I'm not even sure the recoil follows Newton's Laws. It doesn't even seem to occur 100% of the time. So I can't make any promises there, unfortunately. The G-forces on the payload are a bit kooky because the vessel gets taken on and off rails (so they show up as much higher than they should be based on the forces and masses if you Alt+F3, for instance). I can't guarantee it won't liquify your Kerbals if you leave G-tolerances for crew/parts on... Use at your own risk- but I suggest you do. There's somethong really awesome about seeing a rocket shredding through the atmosphere at a thousand meters per second, propelled from the end of a long mass-driver stack... Similarly, I can't remember many more awesome sights than watching Scott Manley bombard Kerbin with a Mass Driver on the Moon... Regards, Northstar
  12. Have solar panels been fixed so they work properly based on distance to the nearest star in Galactic Neighborhood yet?
  13. Do the stars produce usable light? As in, can you run solar panels off them? I know this was an issue a long time ago when the first packs adding new stars started coming out, and I was wondering if it ever got fixed...
  14. Just to be clear, I'm using Crzyrndm's forked version he talked about here. I guess I should raise this issue on GitHub? I know this specific issue was a onown issue of one of the procedural wings mods a long time ago, so either it's a recurring bug (re-introduced by an update) or it was never fixed... Regards, Northstar
  15. Anyone? I must not be the only one to have noticed this issue. Can somebody confirm they are also experiencing it with the 1.2.2 fork?