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Found 12 results

  1. You're looking to, or you've already downloaded @Nertea's shiny, shiny things so the air filters on your Laythe base keep filtering, or so the cryogenic fuel in your Eeloo probe doesn't escape. But how do you use these exactly? How do you balance the reactors, engines, radiators and overall dry mass to get decent TWR, consistent burns and keep the reactors in their prime too? Here is all the introductory info you need to get you going. Topics will be added over time so don't worry too much about things missing from this post. Glossary Reactor + Engine Balance Reactor + Radiator Balance Reactor Longevity Reactor Control Capacitors Capacitor Control (Soon) Fuel Performance Argon Xenon Refueling Lithium Reactor + Engine Balance When picking a reactor, watch its Power Generated value and Required Cooling value. When picking an ion engine watch its EC consumption and you'll find that this consumption will tend to be exact to the output of a given reactor and that there are several more such pairings begging for you to notice them. Reactor + Radiator Balance Once you can keep in mind how much the Required Cooling of a given reactor is, it should be easy enough to look at the stock radiators and add or multiply their Core Heat xFer values. Once your total exceeds the reactor's Required Cooling value that's it, that's how many of that radiator you need. This is a good setup: 400kW from 2x large static radiator > 300kW from 1x Garnet. Also, never forget that static radiators must be attached directly to the reactor or its parent part or else. I don't need to install a radiator mod to show how to balance a reactor with them, but I would need to install one because stock radiators do have their limitations, and "options" are especially important for ion-powered vehicles that dare to pass through an atmosphere with their reactors running. Reactor Longevity Don't get swept away with the power of a nuclear reactor that you decide to or completely forget to put an RTG or solar panel on your craft. Always include an alternate means of power generation so that the probe core can be kept alive and that you don't waste the reactor's nuclear fuel Enriched Uranium between the last orbital maneuver and the next. In flight there is the danger of the reactor overheating and the loss of core health (separate from core life). Core Health is expressed as a percentage and iirc, once health is lost, total output becomes capped and it can eventually meltdown and become dead and useless (I don't know if it explodes, haha). Core Life is the amount of time you get depending on how full it is with Enriched Uranium and what the output cap is. The output cap is controllable via a slider in the NF Reactor toolbar panel between 0 and full EC/s rate, technically allowing the reactor to run for decades or centuries as an oversized RTG. Reactor Control The final thing about nuclear reactors is, of course, how to operate them directly, especially from the snazzy NF GUI app. Look for this in your KSP toolbar once you have Near Future Electric installed and a nuclear reactor on the active vessel. (It does not show in Map View.) Every proper nuclear reactor mod out there should integrate into Near Future and can be controlled through it, and that makes life good. Such mods (that I know of) include USI Core and Mk2 + Mk3 Stockalike Expansion but exclude KSP Interstellar which changes all nuclear devices in its own way. Do not expect this to control any radiators associated with a reactor. Those must be toggled separately. The UI Elements are as follows: The radio (circle) button under a reactor name is the main switch and lights up when toggled on. The thermometer (with two checkpoint markers) respectively indicate the thermal range, the peak operating temperature, and the overload/shutdown temperature. The number will always be the temperature at a given moment. The three symbolic items above the thermometer represent kilowatt output (not necessary to most of us), the ElectricCharge output (most important) and Core Life (very important). When a reactor is on it will show you the duration in years instead of "Reactor Offline". Basic Controls is the output control slider (at 100% by default) which lets you finely control the ElectricCharge output. Accordingly, the kW, EC and Core Life values over the thermometer will change. Most of us don't need to click Advanced Controls. I didn't, so I don't even know what that looks like. This screenshot features the 2.5m USI device with its context window open and the NF control window. Note that in both GUI its output slider is set to 25%. Both windows have their distinct advantages, but NF's window shows you what matters right now, and for all your reactors if you have more than one, removing the need to pin all your reactors' context windows if you ever have to access them all at once. You do not want to end up like this! In the odd chance that you visit an infernal planet and decide that solar panels were not necessary...or they are present but useless at the time, make sure to never leave things on that will guzzle the current. In this case I had a life support device on and the ship's radiators were maxed out, causing them to fail to cool the reactor, which in turn led to the reactor gradually overheating, losing output efficiency, and nearing its overheat/shutdown temperature. If it reaches its shutdown temperature and does not receive cooling, it will remain super-heated and its Core Health (the percentage status of the core, not the output duration bit) will start to fall, meaning it's decaying and it will become a metal brick. As long as it is hot it will decay. If there's a separate power source able to feed the radiators and cool the reactor down, the decay will stop. Jebediah! Capacitors As @Supercheese mentions below (which helps me a lot in do this part, so thanks muchly ) installing capacitors instead of a reactor can save cost and weight and increase deltaV by quite a lot. As shown in the first picture, you get 8x the amount of StoredCharge to ElectricCharge for the same mass and volume of the part. Each part here weighs 0.25 tons but one quarter-ton of capacitor shines brightly against 2 whole dark tons of normal battery. (Stock 2.5m batteries featured here) While that is a great thing, they have their disadvantages. They are not a 2-way street like batteries and cannot be used out of while they're charging. A capacitor can be paused from charging (and when charging it will feed from everything that produces or stores ElectricCharge) but it cannot be paused while discharging (in doing so it will feed everything that stores or consumes ElectricCharge). You can control* the discharge rate of a capacitor in the VAB and in flight at the Near Future Capacitor toolbar button. As shown in the second picture: because the visible ion engine consumes 1999 EC/s I set the discharge rate to just over that to feed the engine and any vital systems. Unfortunately, as far as I know, you must manually discharge capacitors in series to feed your engines. If you discharge them all at once that's quite literally wasting tons of power. * There are certain lower limits to the discharge rate depending on a capacitor's size which will occasionally force you to add an engine or else waste a portion of the released power. Even if for some reason you end up stacking a reactor's weight or more in capacitors (and heavy, heavy solar panels...) on a craft, you're still saving more than just cost. You're avoiding the troubles of nuclear fuel and reactors themselves if you're still skeptical about the things, but you'll remain at the mercy of solar panel efficiency if you're operating very far from a star. The next thing to consider is how many capacitors set at a given discharge rate will afford a consistent engine burn up to a desired maximum length. The reference formula to measure by is very simple: Total StoredCharge / Discharge Rate = Maximum burn time in seconds. Fuel Performance If you're a nut for fuel performance, then here are a few opening stats including engine sizes to help weigh Near Future's propellants in your mind before you read about them below. Argon Engines 1 ~ 54.55 kN, 2800 ~ 5500 Isp 0.6m, 1.25m, 2.5m Xenon Engines 1.4 kN, 4000 Isp (Stock Dawn engine) 2.3 ~ 5.6 kN, 6500 ~ 19300 Isp (Added engines) 0.6m only VASIMR Engines (can halve their Isp for nearly triple thrust, no change in propellant consumption) Xenon mode: 4 ~ 68 kN, 6000 ~ 7000 Isp Argon mode: 2.5 ~ 44 kN, 8500 ~ 9500 Isp 0.6m, 1.25m, 2.5m Lithium Engines 46 ~ 237 kN, 2900 ~ 3800 Isp 0.6m, 1.25m, 2.5m Argon I personally prefer ArgonGas over XenonGas because it's more abundant in-game (as it is irl) than Xenon and is hence easier to harvest from Duna and other planets with atmosphere. Here I modify a probe that was never meant to go far from wherever it's deployed, to (almost) be able to cross SOI. Almost = not enough fuel but there's plenty, plenty room to fix that. Adding a radial Argon tank (or 4) and changing the Garnet to its TopNode subtype so I can attach things to its other end. Xenon Here's a Xenon-powered Duna probe I launched soon before KSP 1.2.0 was even announced. This is 6 tons, 1 TWR in low Mun orbit iirc, and 11km's dV! The Garnet reactor underneath has 2x Radiator Panel (edge), the straight ones with 150kW cooling power directly attached and they're exactly enough (300kW together) to keep it at/within its limits (300kW). The particular Xenon engines on this one have been deprecated so I can't explore them now. Refueling There are two mods I know of that supply a means not just to use Argon or Xenon, but to replenish your tanks. The first is Karbonite, part of USI. Its low-altitude atmosphere scoops come in 1.25m and 2.5m size. They have very poor intake values since they are firstly filter type devices, and they operate better the faster you're moving and the thicker the atmosphere. Strap some of these, a karbonite power cell and a USI kontainer (for Argon) or a stock Xenon tank to your airplane and fly around (if you have the patience or an autopilot mod). Have the scoops filter karbonite too to feed the power cell and even better, feed some karbonite jet engines so you can infinitely fly and refuel faster.... Or you know, spam them on a landed craft and do the timewarp disco. (Forgive me for mentioning so much karbonite.) Then there's Near Future, of course. It provides the AIReS Atmospheric Sounder (Science category) and the M-2 Cryogenic Gas Separator (Utility category) for harvesting Argon and Xenon. The AIReS is a scanner and both parts only work in atmosphere. Unlike karbonite's scoops, the M-2's performance is not influenced by whether it's moving, and it consumes between 12 and 24 EC/s, or 12 + 24 depending on which gas, or both, you're processing. Lithium The story isn't very different for lithium-fueled crafts, except that Lithium, being a solid material is much denser than Argon and Xenon and that makes it better for crewed ion vessels. TWR is much better at the cost of Isp, and empowers heavy landers and even enables Duna SSTOs. I've made Argon-fueled SSTOs (in KSP 1.1.3) but those required very, very tedious mixing and matching of USI and NFT's reactors, karbonite scoops (to refuel themselves), and engines for sufficient dV and TWR. I don't know if it's still possible now. I haven't been at this kind of thing since KSP 1.2 arrived. Sometime perhaps I will post examples of a perfected ion-powered SSTO. Near Future Propulsion adds Lithium modules to the stock drills and stock ISRU (and the ISRU of Kerbal Planetary Base System if also installed). Here we have an Augustus-capable Lithium SSTO prototype. Since I always have Galileo's Planet Pack installed, I have KER set to Augustus, a moon, and it compares as follows: Augustus: 0.35g, 65km atmo, 350km radius. Duna: ........0.30g, 50km atmo, 320km radius. The Garnet reactors have just enough cooling and this Lithium engine pairs it perfectly for EC flow. The 3 tons of Ore simulates precious cargo like LS resources. Full or empty, though, this craft can make it (however, it's not aerodynamically sound). When devising a Lithium-driven vessel and want to make your engine setup controllable, make sure to add this to your procedure: Setup the reactor on its own stack and if possible, attach all the needed radiators to it. Attach its complement engine and if necessary, nerf the engine so it doesn't drain more EC than is produced (this is only necessary for the huge engines). Take that stack now and multiply it with symmetry until you get a satisfying number for TWR. This only really matters if you want to land or launch in atmosphere. With the prototype craft below, 2x is not enough and 4x is even better. But this isn't always the case. Diminishing returns are hard to avoid or control, especially when the payload fraction goes up from here. Here's a mothership I launched from Minmus. It doesn't claim to be an SSTO but it had about 6km/s dV fully loaded and had some LFO and roughly 1.2km/s for its VTOL mode and a tiny chemical rocketed lander. it was rated for operation with the surface gravity of Vall which is greater than that of Mun. It also contained 3x Near Future's 8 ton Prometheus reactor and 6x 1.25m Lithium engines.
  2. I have been trying to create a mod for 1.2 and made this: New! The super-boosters 1 & 2 are the latest way to get into space without more than the bare essentials. Ridiculously overpowered and ridiculously overpriced the super-boosters are the latest way to get into space-with a price. Comes in rockomax and 1.25 sizes. They are on 1.2 and uses lv-t30 config with extra power. It is my first mod and 3D creation so it is rather shoddytm . I want support from the community, so don't be afraid to criticize. Anyone who can help me with part attachment node offset will be greatly thanked. I am happy to announce that I am in partnership with @Benjamin Kerman.(Thanks Ben o7.) Github: https://github.com/BenjaminCronin/SuperBoosters Licence: MIT Thanks to @Vjrcr , @steedcrugeon , @JPLRepo , @SpaceMouse , @tg626 , @Gamax19 @Benjamin Kerman, @TMasterson5 Owen Maley. To Harry Maley- My Rocketing cousin
  3. Current Version v0.5.4 Solaris Hypernautics is proud to bring you the very latest in virtual particle tech! This a parts pack that takes the all parts of the venerable Ion Hybrid Electric Pack, http://forum.kerbalspaceprogram.com/threads/31286-0-22-Ion-Hybrid-Electric-Pack-30-08-13-Soon-FKSP!!!-See-Development-Monitor, and reimagines them in the next generation propulsion devices that use virtual particles! Now we've expanded our line of technology and engines to include adaptations of Nazari1382's Aurora Atomic Thruster part, nil2work's Retro Future Planes parts, dtobi's Asteroid Cities parts, and various of Zzz's parts. This shows all the parts the mod used to only have, it currently has a full set of comprehensive components. Long ranged designed for high speed aerocaptures, the Fafner Descent Vessel. CRAFT FILE DOWNLOAD LINK: http://kerbalx.com/Carbonjvd/Fafner-Descent-Vessel Massive IPV meant to transport small vessels and modules within its cargo bays to any destination. Can even function as a mobile operations station and refueler, the Armetis IPV. CRAFT FILE DOWNLOAD LINK: http://kerbalx.com/Carbonjvd/Armetis-IPV So what do these tiny particles have to offer when I already have nuclear engines and warp drives? Well, for one these babies don't require the power budget of a small country, though plenty of power is still advised. These drives don't use exhaust so you'll never have to worry about accidently blasting away those fragile solar panels! Electricity is the only thing you need to keep the whole system running, so no more running out of fuel or need for mining! How do I use this crazy new technology?! Easy as one-two-three! One: Generate them via a Virtugenic (and a lot of power). Two: Store it in a Stasis Tank. Three: Propel your ship with it! Told you it's as easy as one-two-three! I heard that you've expanded beyond virtual particles, what else is there?! Glady you asked! We now also have a wide range of parts that utilize the exotic reaches of magnetic fields and dust, yes dust! Our scientists and witch doctors have devised ways to make dust useful like getting xenon out of it or compressing it into ore, which is actually useful. For our line of magnetic fields research, mostly from our bored co-workers playing with the fridge magnets in the break room, we've figured out how harness their power as an ablative to keep systems cool! How cool is that?! Thanks to some serious work with an unmentioned scientist, we've devised even more ways to get power from various resources, nuclear power here we come! I'm sold, so what parts does this pack actually have? Passive Intakes for collecting compressed atmosphere. Huge Docking Port for connecting really big ships. Nuclear Fuel Tanks for holding blutonium. Industrial Nuclear Facilities for refining ore into blutonium. Advanced Grabbers for more options to attach to asteroids. Stasis Tanks for storing virtual particles. Virtugenics for generating virtual particles using lots of power. Kannae Drives for moving vessels and probes using only virtual particles and some serious power. Side Adaptor for attaching things on the side. Virtual Ore Reactors for powering things from ore and virtual particles, the bigger one even has a backup reactor that uses xenon instead of ore. Catalytic Engines for higher thrust rocket propulsion and the ability to draw dust from any atmosphere. Magnetic Drag Array for atmospheric entry with huge vessels, uses its magnetic charge as an ablative, has a built-in SAS system and cooling system. Nuclear Jet Engines for travel through an atmosphere without having to worry about needing oxygen. Retro-Propulsive Unit for a heat shield and an engine all in one part, uses it magnetic charge as an ablative. Nuclear Plasma Engine for when need the absolute biggest space borne propulsion using liquid fuel and electricity. Ionic Plasma Thruster for when don't need a monster engine, but a modest propulsion using liquid fuel and electricity. Magnetic Cooling Unit for dropping the temperature at the cost of power, perfect for fighting overheating. Virtual Dust Containment Tanks for storing dust and virtual particles, though the compression requires constant power or it'll leak virtual particles. Spherical Dust Tanks for storing dust and only dust. Dust Accumulator for gathering dust in any environment over time, but requires constant power to keep the magnetic trapping field up. Dust Processing Unit for extracting xenon from dust or compressing dust into ore, both using a lot of power at the risk of slight overheating. Nuclear Reactors for using ore and a bit of electricity to produce a ton of power, but it tends to overheat so make sure to use the built-in cooling system that also takes power. Nuclear Forge for producing power like a reactor but can also transynthesize virtual particles directly into dust, also has a cooling system built-in. Thermal RCS for maneuvering massive ships without then need for an army of normal RCS thrusters. Spectrometer for getting an area's composition to get some juicy science. Virtugenic Refinery for processing dust into more ore and converting dust into virtual particles. Dust Ring for higher speed drawing in of dust. Solar Wind Panel for truely passive dust collection from the Sun. Micropulsed Magnetic Drive for high efficiency burst of acceleration at the cost of endurance. Zurbin Nuclear Drive for massive propulsion on par with the Indominus in and out of the atmosphere. Gallery of Parts and Usage Details http://imgur.com/a/TFdao#0 PRIMARY DOWNLOAD: http://spacedock.info/mod/187/Solaris%20Hypernautics CURSE DOWNLOAD: https://kerbal.curseforge.com/projects/solaris-hypernautics CKAN AVAILABLE: YES Development Thread Licensing The contents of this pack are licensed as GPLv3. Zzz parts are licensed as Public Domain. Recommended Mods Module Manager 2.6.2 or more Integratable Mods Engineering Tech Tree by Probus Community Tech Tree by Nertea THE ION-HYBRID PACK FOR CURRENT KSP IS OUT NOW GO CHECK IT OUT:
  4. I think I mentioned this back in 2013, but there wasn't much science behind the concept. Basically I propose an inline rocket engine (nozzle). It's an upside-down inline aerospike (only noticed that after functionally modeling it) that let's you stack tanks or other engines directly behind it. Back in the day IIRC we didn't have radial thrusters yet, so I realize that three years later the utility is a little lost, BUT, I still think it's interesting that it may actually work, and may potentially be used to reduce surface drag. In any case, it would have helped with regular staging in lieu of the abominable asparagus staging that is so common nowadays. This idea was motivated by the concept of aerodynamic skin effects (IDK what they're actually called, I'm just a pretend engineer) Well anyways, let me share with you my findings, and you can let me know what y'all think: the nozzle: now to validate this thing a little I ran a couple sims. here's a 2d prototype: and here's the thing in 3d. although I think the 2d cross section is more useful. The boundry conditions here are all the walls at 1atm pressure, and the spigots in the engine shovel 1kg/s of air through the engine. Color is temperature. Now in the 2d pic we almost see an airstream that stays under sqrt(x). that would mean that the efficiency on these things (given the right geometry) could be really good! What I really didn't expect to find was this low pressure area/hourglass air density around the nozzle. that surprised me, but it's possible that I set up the boundaries wrong. (not a real scientist). So I was wondering if y'all had any opinions on the concept, or if someone was willing to independently verify this. you think this type of engine would be a nice addon for ksp? PS: a name for this thing would also be nice, if it doesn't already exist.
  5. dear community, as discussed here first images of following mod 'Rocket Factory' : STS - AIAKOS 1 - Space Transport System projectstatus : work in progress. get AiKOS Project album on IMGUR view album on IMGUR and here
  6. Remember the fusion rocket concept I posted a couple months ago? It turns out the company responsible behind it is also developing what the thread is named after - ELF thruster, for short. Here's a couple papers. In a nutshell (as far as I can understand), the thruster turns whatever propellant it was fed (water and simulated Martian atmosphere was tested) into a blob of field-reversed configuration plasmoid, then accelerating it with magnetic coils. If this works, we may have what could be a revolutionary engine for aircraft - an electric jet engine without moving parts. Still needs some way to power it, though. So, what do you guys think?
  7. *points to the title* Now there's a combination of words I never expected to see... or at least not in a serious context! But a company called Tethers Unlimited is quite serious about it. They've built a hydrolox thruster for microsatellites - main propulsion for large cubesats, or attitude thrusters for slightly larger craft. However, it doesn't carry cryogenic liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen. No, it carries plain old de-ionized water. And it will use electricity from the satellite's solar panels to electrolyse that water, creating oxygen and hydrogen which is then injected into the combustion chamber. The main idea behind it is that small satellites that ride as secondary payloads often struggle to find rideshares if they carry propulsion, because those propulsion systems and the fuel they contain pose risks to the primary payload (or to other secondaries). These risks need to be insured, which costs insurance money, and mitigated, which costs development money. But a spacecraft carrying water needs neither of those two, because the propellant is "non-toxic, non-explosive, and unpressurized". It's also dirt cheap, and (in a future scenario) can be easily replenished by ISRU in space. So much for the theory, but in practice? The system may launch into space for the first time as early as 12 months from now. It's been test fired plenty of times on the ground. (Source) What do you guys think? Hydrolox has the potential for the best specific impulse by a wide margin among the chemical propellants typically used today, and removing the need to carry the low density, hard cryogenic LH2/LO2 bipropellant instantly removes its biggest drawback. But how much extra dry mass and volume does the electrolysis equipment require? How much effort does it take to consistently draw the right amount of liquid from an unpressurized tank in zero gravity? How much electrolysis power can a cubesat's solar arrays provide - will that be enough gas to build sufficient combustion chamber pressure and temperature to actually get the nice, high Isp? Or is the system ultimately no better than a common hydrazine thruster, and its only advantage is the propellant safety? And what about comparing other options for solar electric supported propulsion, such as electrothermal rockets (resistojets)?
  8. http://www.engadget.com/2014/08/18/nasa-origami-solar-panels/ I was going to add this to a pre-existing thread that would have been perfect for this topic, but for some reason moderator locked it, if said moderator feels the urge to unlock the thread, then please merge this post with that thread.
  9. Hi! I have been much idle time, but I'm back and I'm back with a new idea: more nuclear propulsion. Justification of more nuclear propulsion: In Kerbal no evidence of the existence of a cold war, nuclear testing and non nuclear proliferation treaty; and also the only life there are those green people living in the rocket base, so no problem with nuclear contamination. (forever alone) The atomic propulsion that I suggest: - Nuclear thermic engine (update): Now make use of only hydrogen (more down) instead fuel and oxidizer. - Radioisotope engine: A little engine similar to ionic engine, little more heavy, that make use of hydrogen (instead xenon) and not requires electricity. - Atomic bulb: A big powerful engine that make use of hydrogen and little of uranium (more down), and produces electricity. - Nuclear liquid uranium engine: A medium powerful engine that make use of hydrogen and uranium. - Nuclear gas uranium engine: A big very powerful engine that make use of hydrogen and lots of uranium. - Uranium bubble: A medium very powerful engine that make use of only uranium (need a new animation to represent ioniced uranium bubble), and lots of electricity. - Nuclear pulse engine: A very big and very powerful engine that make use of 0,8 to 25 kilotons range nuclear detonations to propelling (need a new animation to represent engine move and nuclear explosions), make use of nuclear nukes (there is of different types, mass and power). - Advanced nuclear pulse engine: A extremely big and powerful engine that make use of 25 kilotons to megaton range nuclear detonations. - Polywell nuclear thermic engine: A little-medium engine that make use of a controlled fusion reactor to heat up hydrogen (make use of only hydrogen), and produces much electricity. - Antimatter injection thermic engine: A little-medium engine that make use of very low amounts of antimatter to heat up hydrogen (make use of hydrogen and antimatter), and produces much electricity. Fuels and materials to propulsion: - Liquid hydrogen: in containers of similar size to "fuel-oxidant" containers (any size). - Uranium: in little and shorts containers. - Antimatter: in little and shorts heavy containers, with reinforced texture, these containers consumes a lots of electricity to contain the antimatter, if there is no electricity, it will explode. - Nukes (very expensive, care): of various types, in very width and shorts containers: - 0,8 kt (60 units) - 2 kt (30 units) - 5 kt (20 units) - 10kt (10 units) - 25 kt (5 units) - 50 kt (3 units) - 100 kt (1 unit) of various types, in very width and large containers: - 25 kt (30 units) - 50 kt (20 units) - 100 kt (10 units) - 250 kt (5 units) - 500 kt (3 units) - Megaton (1 unit) Utilities: - Big radioisotope battery. - Nuclear isomer battery: like classic radioisotope battery, but with more intensity, less duration and rechargeable. - Nuclear power reactor (produces a lots of energy, consumes uranium). - Polywell power reactor (produces more energy than fission nuclear, consumes hydrogen and requires big quantity of energy to start). Technology tree: After nuclear node (thermal nuclear engine): - Add: little and medium hydrogen containers/tanks After nuclear node (thermal nuclear engine): - Advanced nuclear node: nuclear power reactor, big radioisotope battery, radioisotope engine, little uranium container/tank, big hydrogen containers/tanks. After advanced nuclear node: - More advanced nuclear node: atomic bulb, gas nuclear thermal engine, liquid nuclear thermal engine, medium uranium container/tank. - Basic nuclear fusion: polywell power reactor, isomer battery. After more advanced nuclear node: - Kiloton: nuclear pulse engine, little nukes containers, uranium bubble. After basic nuclear fusion node: - Advanced nuclear fusion: polywell engine. - Antimatter: antimatter containers, antimatter injection engine. After kiloton node: - Megaton: advanced nuclear pulse engine, big nukes containers.
  10. We have been having a running discussion in this subforum for the last year or more concerning a type of energy that does not require an apparent mass to generate momentum. Although energy can be converted into light which has momentum it has very little momentum given the energy contained within, and so finding something that has a magnitude more momentum per input energy created alot of discussion. In the end here I hope to show that it really matters little. To start off this analysis lets imagine the settlers of the mid 19th century American west. To accomplish their journey they had wagons with supplies and draft animals to pull the supply, this carried them across an expanse that was devoid of trade goods to either feed themselves or their livestock. Along the way the live stock feed, and because high energy foods spoiled they would kill animals and butcher them for meat and fat. There was a thing called winter, at which point unless you had settled in, it would not be a good thing to be in space. Conceptually speaking all major exploratory journeys are like this, if we imagine the discovery ships, they had to have supplies to last them several weeks, they might stop at islands to pick up water and supplies, and they would not want to be caught in a hurricane. Therefore the concept of expanse, resource management and risk have been dealt with. So now lets consider the trip to or any planet. Our Mississippi river is the LOE, we first have to get our ship up across the problem of drag and its desire to fight orbits. During this phase of the journey we cannot rely on any space resource and so it is a given that the initial state provides the energy and mass to create momentum. Once we have a semi-stable orbit we then can examine the problem of space. Space is a name, it has a sort of implicit meaning that it has no stuff in it. Actually space has alot of stuff, at least our local space, relative to the vast expanses of emptiness between galaxies. The stuff in space however tends to get concentrated into inertially defined bodies. Between these bodies are gases and for a traveler these gases are always in motion and because the gases are almost always charged (that means gas is a mixture of plasma and gas), the gas is maintained in a rarefied state by momentum and electromagnetic energy from the sun, as a consequence it can at times be non-inertial. To be clear here, the density of gas, even in the atmosphere of the sun, is so dilute it is of little practical use. That is to say in the time frame of our journey their is neither the time or a relevant volume of space to collect this an use it. The material state of vacuum space is more than an annoyance if anything, in LOE it creates drag and in interplanetary space it carries ions that can damage equipment or injure travelers. The bodies in our space fall basically into three categories. The smallest of these are asteroids and comets. Asteroids are the left overs from planetary genesis, the gas from our sun slows down and hits things out in the outer system, cools, and gases and dust that did not form large bodies eventually coalesce into dirty ice balls that get tugged by our planets and burn up, eventually. The planets clear orbits and thus are clearly inertially defined in their motion, since they are no longer colliding. Finally you have the bodies in which atomic conversion is a major character of the bodies visible appearance, at high enough energy these also emit gases. To our traveler these are the resources of space, so lets define these as such 1. Asteroids and Comets. Resources - Mass (Carbon, Oxygen, Hydrogen, Nickle, Silica, Aluminum): sub resources (metal for building, water for drinking or fuel cells, carbon for food or electronics, all for momentum), trivial amount of inertia, and transitory or impermanent destination. 2. Planets and Moons. - Inertia (as in they warp space), destinations, and the resources of #1. 3. Stars - Electromagnetism, Inertia, trivial emission of Gas and Plasma (as such also a source of electric charge) 4. Not 1 to 3 above - Quantum space - Non-zero rest energy of fields that permeate our universe (which of yet we are not fully aware or know how to exploit). So basically above we can define space as a list of virtual items, in this we can then rank them to our Space traveler. My ranking may shock but . . . A. [Quantum] space - this is the most important resource of space because it permits long distance travel and because its fields make it possible to establish travel strategies. The physical distance between destinations is in the >109 meters, traveling in drag affords speeds of 100s of meter per second, therefore matter just slows down the process. Matter also creates lots of other problems like gravitational collapses and complex body problems. B. Destinations (virtual and physical) - travelers will eventually need resources or a travel interest. C. Electromagnetic radiation - discussed below. Essentially EM is the purest source of energy, that is not to say it is the sole source of energy, but rest mass as an energy source has an investiment cost (in space this translates into mass). D. Inertially derived warping of space time - for the occasional Oberth effect. E. Mass - E = mc^2, p = m * v These are the resources what are their costs. A. Space - Not suitable for biota, no push-off mass, all* momentum must be derived within (*the status of the rf resonance cavity thruster goes undefined), energy required to reach space and return, energy taken by contamination within vacuum space. B. Destinations represent almost always a non-inertial logic, a dV required to reach them, we talk about space-time, we also have to consider dT. Destinations may have other problems like too much or too little of some other resource (Namely light). C. EM - heat dissipation with too much, energy conversion for use in propulsion and systems. D. Oberth masses - Friction or obstructions, space-time (see B). E. Mass - collection, landing, mining, conversion (not to mention cooling equipment) So basically we have a list of issues for our traveler. Breaking this down much of traveler concerns are non-inertial movements in space-time which require energy and for the most part momentum derived from mass ejection. The above is not the intent of the article, it simply breaking things down into abstractions that the next part can deal with. So what is the problem of traveling (not the traveler). If you are not going to something that cross the same space-time (in some relevant timescale) point dV needs to be applied somewhere. We derive dV Light - almost never used, but requires no mass (we have to assume at this point that the rf resonance cavity thruster is not this type of drive) Chemical - the fuel becomes the ejection mass - limited to bond breaking partial bond formation energy of the fuel. Basically at high temperature unfavorable bonds break the most stable reform as the cool. There is a finite limit on how much energy can be obtained from a chemical bond, it is defined in calories per mole and typically is in the form of O-O, H-H, N-O, N=O, C-C, C-H, C-N, C=C, C=N. Electrodynamic - the mass becomes energized by the input of energy and accelerates. (Ion, plasma, VASIMR, Hall effect, rf resonance*) Atomic - a source of heat is used to rarefy gas or liquid which then expands like chemical energy drive. We can see we need energy to produce light, we need to carry mass to produce chemical energy, we need to carry a nuclear reactor or we need to accelerate ions. Unless you want to carry all the energy with the craft there is a limitation of space, right now its solar power, (given the high mass issues with nuclear and cooling issues) Space gives effectively about 1N of thrust for every 233kg of solar panels (C). This gives a maximum 4.2 mm/s2 of acceleration (0.0004g), with that one needs about 233 meters of space. You can assume that a manned spacecraft this will be 10% of the mass so you are effectively limited to about 0.04g. I have created new ion drives and panels in the game to reflect this (HiPep design thrusters). The major problem is orbiting, this designed requires another source of accelation and is not suitable around low hv objects. Nuclear is worse, the reactors cost as much as the panels in terms of weight but much more in terms of cooling. if we argue that solar is kg per sqm then any means of reducing this improves the portability of the system. Modern age silicon lens are light weight and can focus light on a panel of much lower size and weight. This type of system works great in interplanetary flight, however only at a tangent to orbit, so inefficient transfers are not optimal unless the lens are placed on tracks that can move their positions. They also do not work well in non-inertial manuevers close to inertial bodies, this is because the incident angle shift with prograde motion. The mass of the ion drive is trivial (the most efficient drives of a few kilograms will easily consume all the energy we can currently produce), at 9000 dV the mass of the fuel becomes trivial (because you cant produce enough energy to eject it), the mass of energy production facility is just about everything. Find a way to lower the mass of energy production and Manned missions to (but not landing on) are possible.
  11. I have a proposal for a (really really)endgame engine that is a nuclear powered R.A.P.I.E.R in it`s open cycle it utilizes the nuclear reactor to heat and expand the atmosferic air to provide thrust,when clear from the atmosphere you would change to the closed cycle that uses the internal propelent like the Nerv engine. Well: It would be much overpowered? Yes. Even for a endgame engine? I guess not,it would be the game`s last engine. Why would you make such a engine? To make more dinamic SSTOs that can make a bit longer trips not using mk3 parts. So, what you guys think of this in the stock game? And if there`s a mod that have a engine like that let me know please.
  12. So, photons exert a tiny force when they reflect off of something. I was thinking about the EMDrive yesterday, and how it supposedly uses radiation pressure for thrust. Then I had this ridiculously funny and impractical idea of how the EMDrive is supposed to work, according to the physics we know. It would best be explained by a picture: It would use mirrors as fuel, and would leave a stream of mirrors in it's wake as it slowly gets pushed along. It's completely impractical, but would work. I thought it was a funny idea...