pTrevTrevs

Members
  • Content Count

    1,640
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by pTrevTrevs

  1. I’m really interested in that Shuttle, can you go over any special techniques you used to build it?
  2. If I could state my own humble opinion... My suggestion would be to finish the shuttle tower first, then work on a launch tower for use with smaller rockets, namely something like the Titan II service tower and erector, or the gantries used in Atlas and Redstone launches.
  3. Indeed. Of all the rooms I could have gotten with a magnificent view of the parking lot, I got the one with a window full of leaves...
  4. Thanks to all you guys for your support, I'm posting this from my new residence in Huntsville, with the US Space and Rocket Center's Saturn V right outside my window (or it would be if there weren't a tree blocking the view).
  5. Disclaimer: I believe this to be the best place to post this thread, however, if a moderator believes that another forum would better suit the topic of this post, I ask that they move thks thread to where it is more appropriate, thank you. I first picked up Kerbal Space Program sometime in 2013, not long after the 0.20 update came out. I still remember the old white-walled VAB, from which my first rockets rolled out, most of them asparaguslike monstrosities which needed to be lashed together with dozens of struts in order to hold together. Since then, I have played the game quite frequently, and improved my skills to a point where replicating some of mankind’s greatest space flights, such as the Apollo program, feels entirely natural and routine. I have been active on these forums for the last few years, and many people have praised my creations here, from my World War II submarines to my lunar space station. While in many ways I have learned to harness and mold the game and the laws of physics which are represented within it to do my bidding, Kerbal Space Program itself has also molded and shaped me as well, and the impact it has left on my life is quite significant. When I bought this game I was in eight grade, still practically a child, with no real idea what I wanted to do with my life. Sometimes I thought I would study history, a longtime passion of mine. At other times I told myself I would join the army and become a helicopter pilot, like my father before me. Other times still, I thought I would try and become a writer, although my attention span soon proved to be much too short to produce any kind of significant written works. However, after a year or two of playing this game, experiencing the thrill of designing my own spacecraft, and then actually launching them to the stars, I knew for certain exactly what I wanted to do with my life. Spaceflight has been an interest of mine for a very long time, ever since I saw the news coverage of the twin Mars Exploration Rovers bouncing their way to the surface of Mars, or the occasional footage of a space shuttle blasting it’s way to orbit, but for most of my life it had simply been yet another interest of mine, something that I enjoyed, yet did not have enough knowledge about to fully appreciate. Really, it was just a candle, burning alongside many others, neither brighter nor dimmer than any other one. However, as I played the game more and more, I realized I wanted to learn even more about the world of spaceflight. I wanted to learn how NASA did things, so that maybe I could replicate their achievements in the game. After that, I wanted to learn about the science behind spaceflight itself, so that maybe I could start building more original designs, rather than imitations of real spacecraft. Kerbal Space Program poured gallons of rocket fuel on that candle that was my curiosity for spaceflight and helped it grow into a burning passion for the exploration of the vast world beyond our own thin atmosphere. Due to the game’s impact, I am preparing to devote my entire life to the study and exploration of space. Tomorrow, I leave home to study aerospace engineering at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. I am fully convinced that this is the right choice for me, and I believe that without the hands-on exposure to space that Kerbal Space Program has offered me, I doubt I would have ever reached this conclusion. I am looking forward to my studies with great anticipation, and am also exhilarated at the fact that I will be living and learning just a few short miles from where the mighty Saturn V moon rocket was designed, at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. Having said that, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the Kerbal Space Program developers, as well as to Squad, it’s parent company, and especially to Mr Felipe Falanghe (@HarvesteR), the original creator of this remarkable game. It is because of you all that I am about to take this next step. The inspiration you have given me will stay with me forever, and I hope that I will continue to enjoy Kerbal Space Program for many more years. When it comes to the internet, I am typically a very private person. However, would like to share a photograph of myself at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor’s Complex. I recently took this trip as a final vacation before leaving for school, and while there I suddenly realized that the reason I was there in the first place was due to one game about a group of little green creatures with a collection of rocket parts and a launch pad. With sincere gratefulness, -Trevor P. , Aspiring Aerospace Engineer
  6. I wish you luck with this one; the FSS looks so much more complicated than the fairly straightforward Apollo/Saturn launch tower.
  7. EVA training for Surface Expedition 3 is underway. This mission will be the first to land at a resource deposit and will bring with it special equipment for sampling ore from the surface. No high-intensity mining will be attempted on this mission, but a small amount of ore will be extracted for testing. In order to safe space, this mission will not carry the bulky dish antenna used by SE-2, instead this mission will use Aurelian's main antenna to transmit to Kerbin, while the SEP will only transmit data when Marius passes overhead, eliminating the need for a dedicated long-distance antenna stand. This mission also has a new electrical system. The new stand features bigger solar panels which can track the sun, as well as two radiator panels, to help shed away the heat produced by the mining equipment. The mission will also carry a full suite of SEP instruments, which will be linked into the same central station as the solar stand and mining rig. Many cables are crosses over one another in this training operation, but on the Mun, the instruments will be more spread out. A hose was also connected to the Aurelian Training Mockup, to simulate a potential plan to supply Aurelian with power from the electrical station during its surface stay. Such a setup would help improve conditions during the lunar night when solar power is unusable. However, in order to achieve this, the power station will have to be modified yet again with RTGs in order to provide a constant, efficient power supply throughout all conditions. The training test was promptly terminated once it was realized that due to a miscommunication the crew had proceeded so far into the test that they had begun drilling holes in the side of the launch pad.
  8. Actually, I was wondering if the command seat's mass value in the SPH factors in the weight of a Kerbal sitting in it, I guess now I know...
  9. Business as usual continues with lunar orbital operations, the first Scipio-FT has arrived at the station. The fuel FT-1 delivered will soon be used to fuel up Aurelian 2 for its second journey to the lunar surface, once its next crew arrives. FT-1's launch was perfectly standard, using a typical Princeps 2, and the flight to the Mun was uneventful. There was an issue with the spacecraft's electrical system, causing it to lose power in the critical moments before docking, however the crew aboard the station was able to achieve a negligible relative velocity before the power loss, and so the spacecraft was able to stay in position long enough for the problem to be worked. Docking proceeded as normal, with the spacecraft now berthed to the aft node of the Marius Core Module. Meanwhile, back on Kerbin, to help add some more variety to this save, I've begun working on a sort of concept demonstrator to help me determine the feasibility of constructing a glider for use on Duna one day. It seats a single kerbal, and is extremely lightweight. An actual interplanetary aircraft will probably be powered by a liquid-fueled engine, or possibly monopropellant system, but this early test rig only uses two separatron rockets to give it a short boost into the air for about thirty seconds to one minute of flight time. The spherical fuel tank underneath the wing is intended only for ballast, although in the future it may be called upon to power the aircraft itself. The glider is certainly airworthy, although without any kind of power plant, it is extremely slow, and really lacks sufficient lift to serve as a dedicated glider. Future test models will possibly be towed into the air with another aircraft, or simply given engines of their own, in order to test long duration flight at various altitudes. Currently, the aircraft is slightly nose-heavy, but it flew a surprisingly long distance, considering how weak its takeoff boost actually was. I have no idea what's going on with the wheels sticking out of the top of their fairings, but I guess it's something with the game's suspension model... This design still has one problems to work out, namely issues regarding landing. Many other things will have to change before this aircraft will have evolved enough to be worthy of an interplanetary flight, but this is a start nonetheless.
  10. After much procrastination, excuse hunting, and genuine fear of confronting this 600+ part menace, the Marius airlock is now in place. This newest addition to the station will make spacewalks much easier, and allow spacewalking crewmembers much more capability in servicing the station's exterior. Just like most other lunar-bound payloads, the airlock module is launched aboard a typical Princeps 2 rocket, the medium-heavy workhorse of the booster fleet. The Scipio Upper Stage is used to propel the payload beyond LKO and insert it into Lunar orbit. Once in Lunar orbit, the Scipio Delivery Module acquires Marius on its rendezvous radar and begins procedures for closing with it. The Delivery Module is simply a modified Scipio Service Module, with the heatshield adapter removed, and the rendezvous radar relocated to the side paneling. Close approach and docking procedures are taken over by the station crew, using modern television guidance systems. Docking was a little hairy, especially when I realized that the delivery module's solar panels might collide with the Marius Main Solar Array, however, no such thing happened and the airlock was safely hard-docked. Once safely connected to the station and wired into the power, water, and electricity systems, the airlock was pressurized and the hatch was opened. Shortly after this the delivery module was jettisoned and commanded to separate from the station. It was then set to deorbit itself and impact the far side of the Mun, to avoid a future collision with the station. The Marius Airlock Module will finally allow EVAs to be conducted from a dedicated platform, rather than the Scipio Orbital Module, and will provide storage racks, EVA refueling canisters, and a safety tether to ensure safe, easy, and efficient spacewalks. It also has the same integrated radiator systems present on most other station modules, reducing the need for large and flimsy deployable radiators. With the docking successfully accomplished, the crew now begins an inaugural spacewalk, to test the airlock's new systems and to clean up the station's exterior to help streamline the performance of my computer. Four handholds are clustered around the airlock's end to allow easy access to the two storage racks mounted around the egress chamber, as well as a safety tether. The main goal of this EVA is to remove several items that have become either redundant or obstructive with the airlock's arrival. This includes the tether and storage rack on Aurelian 2's docking node. Both items are now unnecessary due to the nearby storage and tether provided by the airlock. These parts will be placed in a container until the next opportunity arises to dispose of them. Several short-range antennas are also removed from the Core Module and Node 1. These are also redundant, as the station can easily send relays to the two Cato satellites. Both antennas are also obstructive, providing very little clearance between the airlock and the station's main "spine". This kind of decluttering EVA will take place periodically, as the station grows larger and my framerate drops. Marius is already at 625 parts, and I haven't even come close to finishing it according to my plans. The next flight bound for Marius will likely be Scipio-FT 1, with its payload of fuel for Aurelian, and after that, the Expedition 3 crew, which will make the second landing, and take over station operations from Expedition 2 afterward.
  11. Despite being absent from this thread for something like twenty days, I actually have very little to report. The summer keeps winding away, and with it, the time I have left before I leave for college, so I've had to spend most of my days packing up for the move. Fortunately, I was able to get back to this a little bit more tonight. The bad news is that all I was able to finish was two prototype craft in the VAB. First, another variant of Scipio. With the beginning of regular surface excursions with Aurelian II comes a drastically increased demand for fuel in Lunar orbit. Say what you will about that beautiful spacecraft, it's an absolute gas-guzzler. Unfortunately, Scipio-ST's capability to carry fuel is much lower than I had originally thought, and as it turns out, it can barely ship enough fuel to lunar orbit to fill the lander's tanks, let alone provide Marius itself with fuel for orbital corrections. Once I begin mining on the surface, I should have an easier time of it, but until then I need a bigger tanker that can provide a large amount of fuel in a single flight. Scipio-FT (Fuel Tanker) is basically a stripped down version of the old ST ship. The pressurized cargo module has been removed, and with it the ability to carry KIS containers, but in exchange, the propellant storage tanks have been made much bigger. Furthermore, there is only a single (yet very large) fuel tank within the propellant module, which will make manual refueling much faster and simpler. The FT will likely end up replacing the ST, and any parts I need to be shipped to the Mun can be carried on board a crewed ship instead. Second, the first of several logistics vessels intended for constructing or servicing the surface base, once its location has been chosen. This cargo rig can land up to four KIS containers on the Lunar surface In addition to miscellaneous cargo, this rig will likely deliver smaller base components, such as the basic structures of the drilling rig and refinery. Another cargo rig will deliver additional fittings such as radiators, solar panels, KAS connectors, the drills themselves, etc. The surface crew will then install the boxed up components on the equipment structure, to form a complete and fully functional drilling rig. I'm still working out the details, but I think this way will pose the smallest challenge while being versatile enough to adapt to any changing circumstances. These cargo rigs are intended to be disposable, and once their payload is delivered to the surface, they will again lift off and crash themselves on the far side of the Mun to remove clutter. Anyway, I'm really not looking forward to refueling Aurelian for its second sortie because of the lag I experience whenever loading Marius, that's why I've been doing smaller things like the Sarnus probe and these other projects. Eventually, however, I'll have to get around to it...
  12. But... doesn't the term "Base jumping" imply that the jump is performed from the ground or from a fixed structure?
  13. I've added the Outer Planets Mod to my game, and my Sarnus transfer window is open, so I'm sending a probe to the outer planets and possibly even interstellar space. The high DeltaV requirements of the mission require yet another new launch vehicle. This one is an improved version of the Auxiliary booster, with a more powerful first stage engine, larger SRBs, a much larger second stage, and a new third stage. I swear to god this isn't (exactly) a copy of the Atlas V, it just turned out looking like this... This new vehicle has been christened Auxiliary II, and will also be used for unmanned launches, mostly for heavier probes and interplanetary spacecraft. It can also be used with variable numbers of SRBs, depending on the payload, and will likely serve as a workhorse of the fleet. The third stage used on this mission is also new and served extremely well during the burn to escape velocity. It may be adapted for future manned flights, pending future testing. Once the spacecraft is placed on its course for Sarnus, its three equipment booms are deployed. Each one is connected to the spacecraft by a docking port and is rotated out of the way during launch. Once safe to do so, the arms are decoupled and remotely maneuvered to reconnect to the probe bus, and control is provided by a probe core and sets of thrusters on each arm. The arm at the top of this photo holds the probes two RTGs, which will be used for power in the distant reaches of the Solar System, where photovoltaic power is infeasible due to the distance from the sun. The bottom right arm features the magnetometer, which will be used to measure the magnetic fields of Sarnus and any other bodies encountered. The bottom left arm features various other scientific instruments such as thermometers, cameras, gravitometers, etc. This probe is named Sagittarius, the Latin word for 'Archer'. Sagittarii auxiliary units appeared in the Roman military sometime in the early empire. After encountering eastern peoples such as the Parthians, the Romans began using mounted archers, which were much more adept at harassing the enemy from a distance than foot archers were. By the time of the late empire both foot and mounted sagittarii were much more prolific in the army. The Eastern Roman Empire continued to use mounted archers well past the fall of the Western Roman Empire and into the Middle Ages, due to their proximity to eastern empires such as the Sassanids and later the Muslims, who used cavalry to great effect on the open desert plains of the Middle East. After fully deploying its equipment, Sagittarius turns to point its high-gain antenna towards Kerbin. This will be its main orientation for much of the mission. The probe has a long way to go before its encounter with Sarnus, but I'll check up on it every now and then for midcourse corrections and such. Currently, its voyage to Sarnus is expected to last 2 years and 300 days. Following its flyby with Sarnus I will attempt to get a gravity assist to Urlum (Uranus's analog in OPM), but failing that I will attempt to slingshot the spacecraft directly into interstellar space. Before people chastise me, I know it looks like Voyager. I wanted it to look like Voyager, and its mission is intended to closely mirror Voyager's, but nevertheless, I did my best to instill some spirit of originality in it.
  14. Would that mean four satellites all with their apoapsis above the north pole, or two with their apoapsis at the north pole and two at the south?
  15. This one's a smaller mission, but no less important than the previous one. Having proved the ability of the Aurelian lander, the Nerva rover, and the Marius orbital station, I must now determine which areas of the Mun are rich enough in extractable resources to support a ground base. That is the mission of this probe, Polybius. It will be inserted into a polar orbit around the Mun and create a detailed map of the Mun's resource deposits, which will be used to create a shortlist of possible landing sites to explore in the future. Polybius was a Greek nobleman and historian who was sent to Rome as a hostage in 167 BC. In Rome, he used his nobility status to earn a position as the tutor of several high ranking Roman nobles' sons, including Scipio Aemilianus. He eventually became Scipio's advisor, and went on campaign with him during the Third Punic War, and was present at the sack of Carthage. His written accounts of his experiences during this time are some of the most valuable resources available to modern historians attempting to learn about the rise of the Roman Republic, as well as the organization and tactics employed by the Roman legions of this time period. Because of this, the model of a mid-Republican legion (c.300 BC - c.100 BC) is often referred to as a "Polybian Legion". Polybius is launched on a new booster, the Auxiliary. It is intended to be fully modular and can fly with variable numbers and sizes of solid rocket boosters. The model used for this launch carries six small SRBs, but heavier payloads can use larger ones if necessary. Upper stages are also interchangeable, this mission carries the Orbital Insertion Stage 1 (henceforth referred to as OIS-1). An Auxiliary was a non-citizen soldier in the Roman army. Auxiliary soldiers would be granted Roman citizenship and the full rights that accompanied it if they completed their 25 years of service with the army. Auxiliaries were organized into units separate from the legions but were usually grouped together with a legion when on campaign. While a typical Roman army's backbone consisted of a base of heavily armored legionary infantry, Auxiliary cohorts were used to support the legionaries by providing capabilities not available from a standard legionary unit. Therefore, an army's cavalry, skirmishers, archers, etc. would be made up of auxiliaries. Some auxiliary cohorts also fought as heavy infantry, similar to legionaries, but from what I can tell, this seems to not have been as common. This model of the Auxiliary launch vehicle fires three SRBs on the launch pad, and the other three in flight, staggering the burn time of the SRBs, allowing them to propel the rocket higher and longer without causing excessive acceleration. The core stage continues burning long after the SRBs are jettisoned, and can nearly place the payload in orbit by itself. The OIS-1 is built for smaller probes such as this one but is still extremely powerful. It performed both the Trans-Lunar Injection and the Lunar Orbit Insertion burns for Polybius, as well as any course corrections needed during the flight. Once in its final orbit, Polybius begins scanning. It has both a large scanner to detect resources in a region and a narrow-band scanner to provide a more detailed view of the ground directly below it. This is the final model created by Polybius. Unfortunately, the richest resource deposits are on the far side of the Mun, which is currently unsuitable for base construction due to the possibility of a communications failure should either of the Cato relays fall out of alignment. The near side has a few resource deposits, but they are relatively isolated, and only a few of them are close enough to the Lunar equator to be easily reached by a lander from Marius. I'm sure I can find a good landing site in these regions, but it will be tricky, and possibly take multiple surface excursions. The ideal landing site for the base must feature a large expanse of open, flat ground, to facilitate easy landing, base assembly, and rover operation. It must also be close enough to the Lunar equator to be reached by Marius and have enough resources to support a base indefinitely. Finally, it must be far enough away from any mountains so as to allow easy landings with the shallow descent profile I tend to use with Aurelian. The Mun is still a big place, so I should be able to find what I'm looking for with enough time and persistence. In the meantime, I plan on beginning work on several other side projects, namely interplanetary probes. I've installed the Outer Planets Mod, and a Sarnus transfer window opens in about two days, so I have a flyby mission already in the works. Once the Eve window opens I plan to send an orbiter there, to map both Eve and Gilly for resources, and deploy an atmosphere probe to the planet's surface. Anyway, that's enough rambling for one post. I've now fully caught up with my in-game progress, with Polybius safely in orbit and the Lunar surface fully mapped.
  16. As the sun sinks lower in the sky and the shadows lengthen, the crew begins shutting off non-essential systems in Aurelian such as cabin lights, landing radar, and communications with Marius, preparing the lander for its low-power hibernation, which will be necessary to keep the lander's batteries at a safe power level throughout the long lunar night. As the sun finally disappears beneath the horizon, the crew sees Kerbin wax to a greater size than any previous landing crew has witnessed. They will be the first crew to see a full Kerbin in the night sky. For one last time, the crew sets foot on the surface of the Mun, making them the first Kerbals to do so after the lunar sunset. The scientist performs one last check on the SEP station, ensuring that it will be capable of continuing its research and transmissions after the crew departs. The commander and engineer test Nerva's capability to operate in low-light conditions. They examine the headlights, taillights, and ensure that the rover's batteries have enough endurance to power the motors without any solar power. This EVA is much shorter than the other four, and within half an hour the crew re-enters the lander for the final time. Shortly before climbing the ladder, the mission commander takes a moment to survey the valley in which he and his crew have spent the last four days. He is unsure if he will get a chance to return to the lunar surface, and he doubts that anyone will ever return to this particular landing site. The ground has proven to be generally subpar for base construction, the only real features of interest are surrounded by extremely difficult terrain, and the level of resources in the surface has been determined to be disappointingly low. The crew's personal recommendation is that this site be struck from the list of potential base locations. The crew spends the next day and a half inside their lander, waiting out the night. Fortunately, Aurelian was designed with such long stays in mind and features amenities which make the cramped space more tolerable. The lander also has enough extra space to move around, as the cabin is designed for four Kerbals, while this mission only features three. Just over seven days after their landing in the Valley of the Arch, the crew powers up Aurelian's engines and departs. They will return to Marius, where they will take over command of the station from its current crew, which will return home within the next week. A remote-controlled camera mast on Nerva records the ascent for as long as it can keep the spacecraft in view. Within minutes the crew is in orbit once again, en route to their much more spacious living arrangements aboard Marius. During the rendezvous, the spacecraft passes over the landing site once more, and the crew has an opportunity to view their handiwork from orbit. Before long, Marius comes into view, and the crew breaths a collective sigh of relief t the thought of soon being able to get out of their spacecraft, which, despite its luxuries, is becoming increasingly cramped, as the crew becomes more restless. Docked again at long last. The first surface expedition with Aurelian 2 has been a huge success, and while it did not find a suitable base, it did prove the capabilities of the extremely hardy Nerva rover and various pieces of surface hardware which will be used again in future missions. The next missions to the surface will be launched after a comprehensive scan of the Mun's resource deposits can be completed, allowing landing sites to be selected based on that.
  17. It's been a lot longer than I thought since I last posted, so I've got a lot of catching up to do. Between the end of EVA 3 and the start of EVA 4, the crew experienced the first eclipse on the Lunar surface. Because the Mun's orbit has no inclination relative to the ecliptic, such eclipses will happen every lunar day at around noon. Future base designs will have to take such periods of darkness into account for determining necessary battery capacity. Once the Sun emerges from behind Kerbin, the crew exits the lander once more and begins EVA 4. The main objective of this excursion will be to explore the plains to the east of the landing site and to visit a complex of four craters in that direction. Before beginning the traverse, the crew stops by the cargo lander and retrieves some supplies from the cargo boxes. Among these are fou explosive charges which will be detonated during the traverse, to provide data for the SEP's seismometer. After leaving the lander's valley, the crew's engineer picks out a flat shelf of land approximately 500m from the landing site and dismounts to plant the charges. The charges are detonated one at a time and are each set up with a different amount of explosives, so as to provide varied results on the SEP. The charges each have a 15-second fuse to allow the crewmember activating them to get to a safe distance before the detonation. The rover also remains at a safe distance to record the explosions. Once all four charges have been detonated, the crew continues east, onto the plains. This is some of the flattest and smoothest ground in the region, and if a base were constructed in the vicinity of the Arch, it would likely be here. At last the crew reaches the first crater in the complex. The third crater and fourth craters are visible in the distance, in fact, Crater Three overlaps this crater, and the two share a common rim. Unfortunately, due to their distance and the fact that they are so close to Crater One, as well as time restraints, the crew will not be visiting either. The scientist dismounts and hooks himself into the rover's tether to be lowered into the crater. This tether is only 50m long and is not ideal for accessing the inner portions of a crater or ravine, and it is possible that future crews may use a dedicated tether which may be attached to the rover's cable, in order to reach samples hundreds of meters from a crater rim. Once finished with Crater One, the crew stows the tether and continues on to Crater Two. The rim of Crater Two is much steeper than that of Crater One, and so the rover is not able to get as far to the edge. Nevertheless, the scientist makes the climb down the cliff and gets an up-close view of the crater's insides. Just above the rim of Crater Two, the crew places a flag, marking the furthest point of excursion on EVA 4. This will prove to be even farther a drive than EVA 3's expedition to the Arch, although much easier, due to the flat ground. With their exploration of the crater complex complete, the crew returns to the valley and prepares to close out the EVA. Before entering the lander, however, the mission commander has something he wants to do. He produces a golf club (which was not on the official cargo manifest nor permitted by the Astronaut Office) from the rover's storage bay and proceeds to hit a small bag of golf balls off into the distance. Such an event was not on the mission checklist, but such a small break of procedure can possibly be excused. With that, the crew boards the lander and prepares for the long Lunar night. They will make one more EVA after sunset, to test their suits' helmet lamps, as well as Nerva's headlights. However, they will make no more long-distance excursions, and after EVA 5 they will not set foot outside again. This is an orbital photo of the landing site, rotated so that north is at the top of the photo as if it were a map. At bottom is the SEP and high-gain antenna. Above it is the cargo lander, as well as the two containers in which the explosives, SEP materials, and (apparently) one golf club were shipped. To the cargo lander's right is Aurelian 2, with Nerva 1 parked just above it, with its headlight activated. To the northwest of Nerva, a small dot is visible, which is the flag planted during EVA 1. This is an orbital photo of the entire region, again rotated with north facing up. The yellow marker in the center is the landing site, pictured above. Immediately above it, the red symbol marks the landing site of the rover's delivery frame and the North Debris Field which the crew explored during EVA 2. The two blue triangles to the far left of the image represent the flags planted at the Arch. One flag is at the arch's base, and another is on its crest. At the far right, the single blue triangle marks the flag planted by the western rim of Crater Two. The rest of the crater complex is located to the north of the flag. Crater One is nearest to the landing site, Crater Four is the extremely small crater at the very top of the photo, and Crater Three is between One and Four.
  18. A lot of the inspiration for that lander, as well most of the other craft in my CAB series, was taken from a past attempt I made at recreating the Constellation mission in KSP. The rover I used on that landing mission is basically an upgraded version of my SPR rover from earlier.
  19. They’re supposed to be surface contact probes, they couldn’t actually affect the suspension on the legs since they don’t seem to have colliders on them.
  20. Here's Aurelian 2 from my Mission Reports thread "Curing a Burnout" Fully reusable, and can carry up to four Kerbals to the lunar surface. It operates out of a space station in Lunar orbit, and makes trips to and from there, saving me the trouble of needing to send an entirely new lander for each surface expedition.
  21. The crew descends the ladder once more to begin the most challenging EVA of the mission. They board the rover and set off west, to find a way over the rim of the Arch's crater and up to the feet of the massive rock formation itself. Such an expedition would be near-impossible without a wheeled vehicle such as Nerva. The valley between the crater rim and the eastern slope (which itself leads to another crater) in which the lander sits is only about two kilometers across, and it takes very little time for the rover to cross it. Nerva can go over ten meters per second on flat ground such as this, but once it gets into the mountains along the crater rim the going will be much tougher. Before long the road starts climbing upward, and the crew catches intermittent glimpses of the large sea to the south of their position. Unfortunately, the descent to the sea is much tougher than even this treacherous path, and therefore the crew will be unable to explore that area on this mission. The rover begins crawling along the rim of the crater, going as fast as the crew dares to take it. Nerva is proving to be an exceptional mountain-climber, and it handles the rough terrain as well as can be expected. After a long climb, Nerva summits the rim and the crew catches their first sight of the massive Mun Arch. Unfortunately, the crew is only slightly more than halfway there, and the drive to the Arch's feet will not be easy. The rover backs up to the edge of the rim, and uses its towing cable to lower a crewmember down into the crater, to scout out the best path for the rover to take to reach the bottom. The safest option would likely be to use the cable to lower all three crewmembers into the crater, then allow them to go the rest of the way on foot, but nobody was willing to risk that, considering the time that would take. If a Kerbal's life support were to fail he might not be able to make it back to the rover in time. After determining the path which presented the least amount of steep slopes and other obstacles, the crew proceeds with extreme caution, going no more than five meters per second, and often much lower. At long last, the crew begins the final climb to the foot of the Arch. Compared to the unpredictable terrain of the crater rim, this simple, flat slope is practically a godsend. After a grueling six to eight kilometer drive, the crew has arrived at their destination; the entire purpose of choosing this landing site in the first place. One picture for the newspapers back home... Then a quick little hop to the crest of the Arch for a private photo, unscheduled and not technically allowed by the mission safety rules. That's why the crew switched off their mics prior to scaling the Arch. With the nearest Kerbals in orbit around the Mun with no way to reach the surface, who's going to stop them? After admiring the view from the top of the Arch, the crew jumps back down and prepares to depart. They are not looking forward to the return trip, but at least the Arch has made it worth the trouble. The crew begins the journey along the inside of the crater and back to the low spot in the rim which they previously used to pass into the crater. After much trouble, the crew makes their way to the rim and climbs over. From here it's a simple downhill drive back to the landing site in the valley. The crew makes the drive down into the valley, being careful not to go too fast, as the entire trip is downhill. Before long the crew arrives back at the landing site without a scratch. After some routine housekeeping work with the lander and SEP station, the crew climbs back into Aurelian and nearly immediately falls asleep. They have two more scheduled EVAs, one of which will take place during the lunar night to test Nerva's illumination hardware in low-light conditions.
  22. Hey, thanks! Maybe I will post downloads if that's what you people want. I'll have to sort out which craft use which mods though, to make it easier for people to access the craft. Here it is. The mod seems to only allow a certain number of footprints on the ground, as once you walk far enough, the footprints from the beginning of the trail begin fading away. They also aren't persistent, so if you reload a quicksave or switch to another craft outside of load distance they disappear. Still, they're pretty nice, they help me get that "scuffed up" look you can see in the picture below to the soil after an intensive moonwalk, instead of having the ground remain smooth and pristine the entire time.
  23. After a rest in Aurelian's cabin, the crew hits the surface once again, for a short geologic trek, which will pass through a debris field to the north of the landing site, where the rover's delivery frame was seen to crash. The crew will attempt to find the frame, which by now has been sitting out in the lunar vacuum for some five hours, and examine any notable rock formations and boulders they find. The biome scanner on the rover will also perform a limited resource analysis to determine the plausibility of using this site or an area near it for a base. Nerva's cockpit provides an ample field of view for dodging any obstacles, and the screen mounted between and above the two drivers' seats allows them to use camera systems mounted on the exterior of the rover to open up any blind spots, as well as use a real-time navigation map to track their position on the surface. After mounting the rover, the crew sets off for the north debris field. The mission scientist is sitting on the rover's rear jump seat, in order to save time and effort when he dismounts for his numerous sample collection stops planned during the trip. After driving slightly over a kilometer, the crew finds the rover's delivery frame, battered from its crash into the surface, but not wholly destroyed. Here, the mission engineer dismounts and begins his work with the frame. He investigates the damage it has suffered and photographs it from multiple angles. Finally, he removes a thruster block from the side to return to Kerbin. The effect of its time spent on the lunar surface, as well as the stress it suffered during the crash, will be studied by the program research team back on Kerbin. Once finished with the delivery frame, the crew heads on; they still have several stops to make before they can think about relaxing. The scientist discovers his first point of interest; a large boulder, nearly the size of a small house. The boulder is half-buried in the lunar dust, and the scientist goes about his work with glee as he thinks about the possible secrets this boulder may hold. On the way back, the crew made an unscheduled stop, after finding an odd floating rock in their path. The crew was perplexed as to why something as heavy as this boulder was floating two feet above the ground, but their best guess was that it was due to a "terrain rendering error". The program research team will have to verify this before any hypothesis can be made. The rover returns to the landing site from the east, having made a large loop through the north debris field, and partly onto the gentle hill to the east of the site. Before turning in for the night the crew makes a stop at the SEP station, to ensure it is still functioning as usual and to make a few adjustments to the antenna, allowing for better telemetry to come through. Having accomplished that, the crew is now finished with their second spacewalk, and they return to Aurelian to relax and take a sleep period. Tomorrow they have what will quite possibly be the most difficult and nerve-wracking expedition ever conducted on the Mun ahead of them; a drive across the valley, over the rim of Arch Crater, and right up to the feet of the Mun Arch itself, resting just inside the southern rim of the crater. Nerva will prove invaluable for navigating the treacherous mountainous terrain, as well as threading its way through the crater rim and down into the bowl itself.
  24. Big post coming, lots of images to share. Aurelian 2 spreads its wings for the second time and undocks from Marius for its first trip to the lunar surface. The lander enters its descent orbit, with an altitude of about 4,000 meters radar altitude. It will coast in this orbit until it passes over the landing site, at which point it will begin its powered descent. The Arch appears right where it's supposed to, and the landing radar begins receiving signals from the cargo lander on the surface. The crew sets the lander down about forty meters from the cargo lander, so as to avoid damaging any of the equipment with rocket exhaust. I'm quite proud of being able to make not one, but two pinpoint landings in the same place like this. Such skills will no doubt come in handy when it comes time to construct a base on the surface. Following a brief rest period, the crew begins their first EVA. This excursion will be dedicated to setting up the equipment at the landing site and taking an initial scan of the surrounding area for future reference. The first order of business is for the crew to make its way to the cargo lander and unpack the rover and other equipment onboard. Nerva 1 is guided off the lander's platform and onto the surface by remote control. It has a frame with RCS thrusters on top to help it remain steady, slow its descent, and prevent tipping. The frame is discarded once the rover is safely on the ground. With the rover deployed, the crew's engineer now unpacks the cargo boxes underneath the lander, which contain the parts for the surface experiment package. After scouting out a good location for the station a short distance from the landers, he deploys the central station and a battery pack, then installs the cable plugs in each port on both structures. Meanwhile, the rest of the station parts are ferried over by the other two crew members with Nerva 1 The crew now begins constructing the rest of the SEP's components. A power station with solar panels is set up... As well as a high-gain antenna, which will be used both to improve the crew's communications with Kerbin and to send back data from the station after the crew's departure. Both the power station and the antenna are linked to the SEP central station with cables. Over the next half-hour, the crew assembles the rest of the station's components, then links them back to the central station. Each station is then calibrated by the mission scientist. After activating the station, the crew loads their spare supplies into Nerva and heads back to the lander for a rest. The next EVAs will involve long-distance excursions with the rover, culminating with a visit to the nearby Mun Arch. But first, the mission commander has one more task; to set up a flag to mark the landing site for future explorers. Having earned their rest, the exhausted crew sets Nerva to its dormant mode and piles back into Aurelian's cabin. In four more hours, they must be ready to begin the second moonwalk.