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Posts posted by pTrevTrevs

  1. On 3/14/2019 at 11:49 PM, pTrevTrevs said:

    Maybe this has been discussed before and I'm too lazy to read through years of thread history, but is this name in reference to the Titan I in Cordele, Georgia?


    I've driven through that town dozens of times since I was a kid, and I still have no idea why or how they got their hands on it.

    By God I’m actually back already

    I’d timestamp this or directly embed my image, but I’m on mobile and I just drove past it.

  2. z2CHbwG.jpg

    Aquila 1 lifts off after one and a half Kerbin days on the surface. It leves behind its research station, the flag, and cargo boxes, but due to the light gravity of Minmus, it was unnecessary to split the lander in two halves as is done with most disposable Mun landers.



    The pilots report exceptional handling characteristics and unparalleled cockpit visibility. This lander feels and looks almost more like an aircraft than a spaceship, and its compact frame and light mass gives it a sense of agility and responsiveness never before seen in spacecraft of this time, and certainly not in the lumbering Aurelian-class ferry landers. Already dozens of helicopter pilots are lining up to join the astronaut corps for a chance to fly an Aquila.


    In minutes, Aquila 1 is soaring across the plains of Minmus, on its way to rejoin Scipio 9.


    Although the intercept happened in darkness, Aquila's overhead landing light helped illuminate Scipio and prevent a collision.



    Half an orbit and one sunrise later, the two ships are connected again in orbit.


    After loading up Scipio with experiment data, sample containers, and other equipment from Aquila, the saddest part of the mission is at hand. Aquila has no station to return to after its long mission, and it now has no other purpose than to drift aimlessly in orbit, perhaps waiting for another set of explorers to discover it and either repurpose or salvage it. 

    Too bad, it's probably my favorite design of this save so far...


    Before leaving it to its fate, the crew photographed the derelict lander as it drifts slowly out of view.


    But there's little time to mourn the machine. The crew now prepares to leave Minmus behind, and burns its way back to Kerbin.


    Speeding away from the world's largest spearmint, Scipio 9 now has eight days before its return to Kerbin.



    Finally though, at the end of those eight days, the blue planet once again fills the crew's windows, and in preparation for reentry they jettison their DSH, having loaded it with all their unnecessary equipment and waste products.


    After nearly four weeks in zero-g, the crew is crushed against their seats by the force of reentry. The G-forces peaked out at around 7 Gs, not the worst reentry ever, but far from the easiest for the crew.


    At the end of it all, though, the three big yellow and white parachutes signify that the crew is safely home again, as their capsule drifts safely towards the ground. I wish I could have landed in the water, but oh well. If an off target touchdown is the worst thing that happens to me today, I'll count myself lucky...


    Scipio 9 back home. The mission has provided invaluable data on the effects of long-term spaceflight, deep space navigation, and conducting surface activities on extremely low-gravity worlds. The first mission to interplanetary space is growing ever closer.

  3. 9KKdFUK.png

    Aquila's systems are powered up prior to undocking, and the two landing crewmembers take their seats at the controls.


    Once free of the Scipio stack, Aquila jettisons its cruise ring. With proper manned control, it can now maneuver freely and operate on its own


    I also want to remark in passing how much I'm liking this new lander model. It's really got a great view, and it feels just like a helicopter cockpit to me!


    Aquila is a new variant of lander tailored specifically to the remote distance and the low-gravity environment of Minmus. For landing mission on Minmus it is meant to be single-use, although I'm considering making a more powerful version for suborbital flights on the Mun once I have a base established.

    For anyone who's studied Latin or one of its derivatives, the meaning of the lander's name may be obvious. For those not familiar, Aquila is simply Latin for "Eagle"




    Aquila's landing site is positioned just at the edge of one of the large seas, near enough to both the sea and the bordering highlands that the crew can collect surface samples and observations from both types of terrain.


    After skimming the surface for some distance to find the absolute best landing site, Aquila touches down just on the edge of the flats.


    The RCS fires downward for a few seconds to ensure the ship is safely landed...


    And just like that, Aquila 1 is on the ground.


    A few minutes later, the crew disembarks and begins surface operations.


    First order of business is to unpack the cargo boxes carried under the lander's "wings".


    After that, the research station is assembled. The SEP central station has received yet another new power source, this time a simple RTG mounted on a boom protruding from the station.


    The rest of the experiments are laid out and linked to the central station, and then the entire SEP is activated and begins sending data back to Kerbin.


    I had a custom flag when I played in 1.4.5, however now I can't seem to get it to work in 1.6.1, so I'm back to using my favorite stock flag.

    However, custom flag or no, I'm still obligated to leave one at every landing site.


    Once the flag is secure, the crew takes a short trek into the nearby hills to get some samples with which to compare those from the flats.


    Once done with that, it's time to return to the lander. Unfortunately, Aquila's light frame which allowed it to so easily set down on Minmus also limits its cargo capacity, so there's not much else that can be done here.


    The sight of a job well done.

  4. After something like two months of inactivity, I'm back into the game. Spring semester has been busy, but I got a few hours worth of time over the last few days.

    The preview I sent up a few days ago depicts the first launch of Scipio 9, the most logistically challenging mission yet undertaken in this save. Following Scipio 8's orbital mission over Minmus, go-ahead has been given for a surface landing on the green moon. Due to the heavy payload requirements necessitated by both the lander and the habitation module needed for the long journey, the mission hardware will be sent over two separate launches, both conducted from the newly completed LC-39 (thanks, @damonvv).


    The first launch from pad 39B bears the newly designed lander for the mission. No plans to conduct long-term research on Minmus are underway, and in order to save costs and weight the lander is both disposable and only able to seat two crewmembers. It will be left in orbit of Minmus following the completion of its part of the mission. More on this later.



    Mere minutes after the first vehicle achieves orbit, Scipio 9 lifts off from the nearby 39A pad. The launch vehicle carries the Scipio 9 spacecraft itself as well as the mission's Deep Space Habitat (DSH). The empty launch tower from the 39B launch is still positioned on the pad.

    Both payloads are lifted by the same launch vehicle, a standard Princeps III with two solid rocket boosters.


    As Scipio 9 burns for orbit, the lander (named Aquila 1) leaves LKO and begins its journey to Minmus.



    Meanwhile, Scipio 9 is on its own way to Minmus. After the crew performs the injection burn they separate from the Princeps upper stage and extract the DSH.


    Both ships are now on their way to Minmus. Although Aquila 1 launched earlier than Scipio 9, the manned ship made use of a distant lunar flyby to accelerate and overtake Aquila, so that it will arrive at Minmus three days in advance. This extra time will provide room in the schedule for further orbital studies of the moon.



    As the ship travels farther and farther from Kerbin and away from its natural light, more stars become visible, and the crew  took the time to perform several astronomical observations. The first photo shows Kerbin in the center of the window, with Jool near the top, and, near the bottom, the Mun can be seen as a faint crescent and Duna as a dim red bead. The second photo records Moho completing a transit of the Sun.


    Just over two weeks after launch, Scipio 9 arrives in orbit of Minmus.


    Three days later, Aquila 1 is delivered in orbit by the upper stage of its Princeps launch vehicle. It is currently attached to a cruise ring to provide power, heat management, and remote control to the unmanned ship.


    Scipio 9 now approaches the lander and inspects it prior to docking.



    Scipio 9 slowly moves in and captures the lander with the fore docking port on the DSH. This makes the entire stack the largest spacecraft yet assembled in orbit around Minmus (in my save, anyways), a record which will likely stand for some time, as I have no plans to construct a station around Minmus as I have done around the Mun.


    To be continued.

  5. Been busy the last few weeks with winding up the semester, but I've had some time in the last few days to work a bit more on the station. Today I added a new module which features a cupola for surface observation and a new radio dish for facilitating better communications with surface expeditions.


    Launch took place on the new Princeps II, equipped with two solid rocket boosters, same as the Scipio 8 launch.



    Delivery to the station was performed as usual, with a Scipio service module to provide power and propulsion during the trip.


    The station in its current configuration, with the new cupola on the nadir port of the Marius core module.


    The crew certainly appreciates the new panoramic view of the lunar surface!

  6. 11 hours ago, Geonovast said:

    100 years and we still haven't learned our lesson.

    War, I think,  is somewhat of a necessary evil, and it will always be a part of our world no matter what we do to prevent it. Evil and violent men are bound to do evil and violent things, and it's just human nature that such people will always exist to perpetrate evil and violence. I believe that in such cases, the use of war or righteous violence to end such barbarism is not only acceptable but necessary. War for the sake of war, as World War One can so easily be seen, is indeed a tragedy, and it saddens me to think that millions of people were cheated out of four years of their lives, for many of them the prime of their lives, for something as irrelevant to them as the death of an Austrian nobleman whom many of them had likely never heard of in their lives. I would contrast this, however, to the Second World War. The ultimate purpose of the war, at least for the Western Allies, was to liberate Europe from the grip of a warmongering, genocidal dictator whose ultimate goal was to exterminate those whom he considered to be ethnically and genetically inferior to his own people, and was willing to stop at nothing to achieve it. The fight to ensure a free world clean of such tyrannical and oppressive ideologies is one that I would consider righteous and justified, and contrasts sharply with the overly vague and thin motivations for the First World War.

    In addition, I do think that the World Wars, although they caused unholy levels of death and destruction, have a sort of a silver lining to them, in that by experiencing them, we have learned that such deadly conflict should be avoided at all costs in the future, lest we destroy ourselves. Because of this we've made very good efforts to prevent the outbreak of a third world war over the last seventy years. For example, almost every conflict or crisis throughout the Cold War and modern era has had some kind of restraint imposed by the belligerents upon themselves in order to prevent unnecessary escalation, from the refusal of President Truman to cross into China during the Korean War to the exclusion zone established by the British military during the Falklands War to the 100 hour time limit on the ground campaign in the 1991 Gulf War. While such political restraint hasn't always been as beneficial as was initially thought, and in some cases may have even helped to prolong the war on which they were imposed, they were almost always done with the intention of avoiding escalation of the conflict, of preventing the outbreak of another global war over something so simple, such as Ferdinand's assassination in 1914. In fact, we live today in one of the longest and most stable periods of peace ever seen in history. Because of this, I certainly think mankind is learning its lesson, even if it still has a long way to go.


    Anyway, that's my two cents on the matter...

  7. It's Friday, so I now have time to post the entire mission report for Scipio 8.

    Scipio 8 is a new mission profile, making use of the Scipio Block III spacecraft and its new Princeps III launcher. Instead of the now-routine flight to lunar orbit and the Marius space station, Scipio 8 will perform free-flying mission to orbit Minmus. The extreme distance between Kerbin and Minmus will allow the crew to develop techniques for deep-space navigation and survival. The mission also presents an opportunity to survery the icy moon, and more adequately asses its potential for future exploration.





    Princeps III is derived from the earlier versions of the Princeps rocket family. Princeps III features stretched first and second stages, as well as the ability to be fitted with variable numbers and sizes of solid rocket boosters. For this mission, two small-size SRBs have been fitted to the first stage to provvide the extra boost needed for the spacecraft to reach its remote destination.

    Princeps III and its variants are planned to replace most of the existing heavy-lift capable rockets in the fleet, and will be used for both manned and unmanned payloads.

    Scipio Block III was developed alongside the new Princeps LV, and is intended to perform a much more versatile range of tasks, in preparation for upcoming flights to LKO and beyond Lunar orbit. The biggest alteration from previous models is the removal of the Orbital Module. Instead, on long-duration or long-distance missions, a new mission module will be launched along with the spacecraft, and retrieved via the docking mechanism after launch. Multiple types of MMs will be developed for each type of mission to better suit particular mission objectives. Because of this change, the command module is now at the top of the launch stack, greatly simplifying the abort sequence, as well as allowing easier entry and exit of the spacecraft on the pad. For Scipio 8, the mission module is the Deep Space Habitation Module, the largest MM in development, which provides ample living and storage space, as well as extra propellant and power generation, for a long spaceflight.


    Scipio 8 launches with no issues, and performs its escape burn from LKO with the remainder of the second stage's propellant.


    During transposition and docking, however, the mission encounters its first hitch. The spacecraft's OMS thrusters were found to be unresponsive, an issue I later traced to the service bay covering them, so that the game considered the thrusters "stowed" and shut them off. To solve this issue, the crew performed an emergency EVA to gain access to the MM and use its own thrusters and control to complete the docking.


    The spacecraft is now ready for its voyage. The mission module will provide crucial living space for the crew throughout the two weeks of the flight, as well as allow the operation of scientific instruments that normally would not fit in the Scipio command module.


    In order to shorten the length of the voyage, the mission attempted a radical new maneuver to pass beneath the Mun's south pole, both aligning the spacecraft's orbital plane with that of Minmus and accelerating the craft enough to reach Minmus much quicker than normal. However, this maneuver was extremely costly and overly complicated, and will likely not be repeated for future missions


    Nevertheless, Scipio 8 arrives in orbit around Minmus less than three days after launch. The crew will spend six days in orbit, photographing the surface, testing communications with Kerbin and performing various other activities. Of particular interest to the geologists following the mission on Kerbin is the impact crater formed by the Velite 1 impact probe, which will give the crew a glimpse at the deeper layers of the moon's soil.


    For public relations, the crew photographed Kerbin and the Mun together through the round window of the command module hatch.


    Finally, after six long days the crew finally departs the Minmus system and begins the long trip home.


    On the way back, the Command Module Pilot performs a spacewalk to retrieve experiment packages and film canisters from the exterior of the mission module.


    He also investigates the service module to determine the cause for the OMS failure earlier in the mission.


    After eight more days of flight, Kerbin once again fills the windows of Scipio 8, as the tired crew prepares for reentry.



    The disposable mission module is sealed up and jettisoned first. The crew photographs it as it recedes into the distance.



    The service module follows soon after, and then the docking collar is removed to reveal the spacecraft's recovery systems.


    Peak G-force during reentry was over 7G, higher than even a typical lunar reentry for Scipio.



    In time, the spacecraft's parachutes inflate and bring the ship gently down into the warm weather of the splashdown zone.

    While not as exciting as a lunar surface expedition, Scipio 8's objectives still provides invaluable data to the engineers and scientists working on developing methods for interplanetary spaceflight. Such long-distance spaceflights are yet another stepping stone before leaving the Kerbin system entirely for another planet.