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  1. Post #1 - April 13th, 2017. DISCLAIMER: This entire thread is intended as a parody of the space race, so please don't take what I say seriously. Kerbin's Geography: 1943 - 1978 (Current): Mod list: Please be advised that I am currently accepting payloads submitted for launch by "private companies." Preferably, payloads must under 15 tons, but the limit is 25. The only mods you can use are MOLE, Tantares (Either LV or spacecraft), TRAILS Plus, Home-Grown Rockets (With the patches for use in 1.2.2), Fuel Tanks Plus, KAS/KIS, and Ven's Stock Revamp. I'm not installing mods just for your payload, because my game already crashes way too much! Payload submission form below: So. Here it is. I've been wanting to do an Eyes Turned Skyward style mission report series, where I'd play a new career mode game, presented in a history book format (Also inspired by this). These mission reports will have multiple different parties launching space vehicles - the USSR and the USA. Yes - It's basically just a career game with a moderately entertaining backstory - but I wanted to do it so here it is: --- Year 1, Day 1. (April 13, 1957) At a remote complex in southern Kazakhstan, a new ICBM is being prepped for launch. But this is no regular ICBM. And it carries no nuclear payload. As trucks and jeeps drive around the missile, ground crew fuel up and prepare the ICBM for takeoff. This missile contains a small satellite, equipped with four long-range antennae and advanced scientific instruments. At T-minus ten minutes to launch, the three large, green metal launch gantries lower themselves away from the rocket, and the ground crew clear the launch zone. TV crews crowd around barriers, blocking any unauthorized personnel from gaining access to Launchpad-G. The rocket has two stages - the first, an FLT-800 fuel tank, with a singular BPT-180 engine, and a TR-18A decoupler to make way for the second stage - an FLT-200 fuel tank and another BPT-180 engine, with four Vernor engines to keep the rocket on course. At zero hour, the entire stack lifts off the pad, the 158 kiloNewtons of thrust more than enough to propel the rocket through the sky. Huge clouds of smoke billow from the engine as it approaches the highest-ever altitude set by an aircraft - 28 kilometres - and easily breaks that altitude record in a mere matter of seconds. At an altitude of thirty kilometres, the first stage cuts-off, and is jettisoned. The craft coasts to apoapsis, the Vernor thrusters aligning it on the correct attitude for the orbital injection. The second stage cuts-off with a mere ten seconds left in the orbital injection, at which point the fairing deploys and the 'Sputnik' satellite completes the burn using its NT-5R engine - an efficient, low-thrust experimental nuclear engine. The engine, also known as the 'Shiba,' has not been perfected, and slowly emits radiation, which would, if exposed to any astronauts for long duration missions - as the USSR would later find out - be lethal. After the satellite had reached orbit, it took readings with its scientific instruments, and broadcasted a continuous message towards Kerbin: Beep, beep, beep, beep... The successful launch of 'Sputnik' prompted the United States of America to respond with their own space program. In the beginning, the task was handed over to the Air Force, which, to put it bluntly, couldn't get to space if they were given a prefabricated rocket with instructions spelled out in block capitals with simple verbs and multiple pictures and diagrams. They were better at designing aircraft. They just couldn't get their heads around the fact that there is no air in space. So it's no surprise that on Year 1, Day 3 (July 21st, 1957), when the US Air Force attempted to launch 'Voyager 1,' the rocket failed to get off the ground. The two strap-on TX-354-3 SRBs and core SCOUT LRB were designed to carry the satellite, 'Voyager-1,' to an Apoapsis above the atmosphere, where the satellite would perform the orbital injection. However, the engineers made the embarrassing mistake of mistaking the vacuum Isp for the Isp at sea level, which wasn't even capable of lifting the rocket a single metre off the ground! The launch had made a mockery of the US Air Force, and the American people lost faith in their country's ability to compete with the USSR, with the failure being nicknamed "Flopnik" by the American press. And so, on Year 1, Day 4 (October 3rd, 1957), the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) became the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). And NASA's first task was to launch a satellite to compete with the Soviet 'Sputnik' program. The first thing NASA did was haul Wernher Von Kerman out from the Air Force's grasp to become their head rocket engineer. He and the rest of his team happily obliged, and, once work on the KSC (Kerbal Space Centre) was complete, work on the 'Explorer' program began. The facilities at KSC were less advanced than those at Vandenberg Air Force Base, but they were completely NASA-owned, and because NASA was government-funded, it meant that they could decide what to do with their facilities. Construction of the 'Cygnus M-22' rocket began on Year 1, Day 5 (December 19th, 1957). First, the rocket required two DIOSCURI-1 SRBs to provide the necessary boost at launch to raise the Apoapsis. The contract to build and test the boosters was awarded to BDB International, while the first core stage, an FLT-800 fuel tank with a TR-18D stack separator and an MPT-180 engine, was given to LeBeau Space Industries. The upper stage, consisting of another MPT-180 engine and two fuel tanks, one FLT-200 and one FLT-100, was also awarded to LeBeau Space Industries. The payload, the 'Explorer-1' satellite, was to be built and tested by the NASA design teams themselves. And, alas, on Year 1, Day 6 (March 11th, 1958), 'Explorer-1' was ready for launch. It sat on Launchpad-1A at the KSC. Crowds of reporters flocked to the Space Centre, and the local police had to be called in to prevent rambunctious Kerbals from jumping over the barriers and onto the pad! At lift-off, the two SRBs and central LRB ignited, and the rocket ascended towards the heavens on a plume of flame and smoke. Across America, tall tales were told of the launch being felt across the continent. But of course, they were just that - tall tales! At twenty kilometres altitude, the two DIOSCURI-1 SRBs were separated, and the central stage continued until it, too, was jettisoned at forty kilometres. The upper stage completed the orbital injection and raised the orbit of the satellite to a record-breaking altitude of five-hundred kilometres! As the satellite circled Kerbin, it took photographs, and studied ionizing radiation and the temperature of space! A famous image taken by 'Explorer-1,' known as 'the Greenish-Blue Marble.' Summary: USSR successfully launched 'Sputnik' LKO satellite - first artificial satellite - Year 1, Day 1 (April 13, 1957) USA failed to launch 'Voyager-1' LKO satellite - Year 1, Day 3 (July 21st, 1957) USA successfully launched 'Explorer-1' LKO satellite - Year 1, Day 6 (March 11th, 1958)