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Everything posted by KSK

  1. KSP Weekly: The Earthquake

    And there's the most important part of the whole update. Closely followed by that. My respect to everyone from Squad who stood up when they were needed. We can wait for KSP news.
  2. Manned Mars mission poll

    Excuse me? The Cycler remains in orbit. Therefore you need some means of getting crew onto the Cycler from LEO and then off the Cycler and onto the surface once you get to Mars. Therefore a separate landing craft is required, although you might also choose to use that landing craft for other parts of the mission. Anyway - you can take your patronising first paragraph and shove it. For future reference, if you want to engage in constructive debate, I suggest being less confrontational and not immediately jumping to conclusions about what the other person was talking about. For the moment I refuse to engage in a pointless 'debate' in which @Northstar1989's preconceptions are self evidently correct and anyone who disagrees is self evidently too stupid to understand. I'm out. The door has failed to hit me on the way.
  3. Manned Mars mission poll

    Do you any basis for these numbers at all or are you just plucking them from thin air to support your preconceptions?
  4. Hey folks, This thread has grown quite a bit since the original First Flight short story. To make things a little easier (and thank you to those who suggested this), here are the links to the various chapters for ease of reading. Cheers, KSK Contents Prologue: First Flight Part 1: The Interplanetary Society 1: Space Program Rising (Part I) 2: Space Program Rising (Part II) 3: New Directions 4: Satellite 5: Two's Company 6: These New Engines 7: The Courage of Conviction 8: The Other Side 9: Kerbal in Space Soonest 10: Project Moho 11: The Seed 12: Poyekhali 13: All the Proof They Needed Part 2: Secrets of the Kerm 14: Decisions 15: New Homes 16: Mun Or Bust 17: We all build them - We all fly them 18: MarkusA380 Fanart 19: Reunion 20: Beached 21: Beyond Kerbin 22: Far Side 23: The Dish 24: Dreams 25: A Journey Around the World. 26: Circles. 27: Docking - Part I. 28: Docking - Part II. 29: And Rendezvous. 30: The Cords That Bind. 31: Echoes of Time. Part 3: Kerbal Space Program 32: Right of Conclave. 33: Project Eve. 34: Uncharted. 35: Dewdrops. 36: Preparations. 37: Pioneering Spirit. 38: With a little help... 39: Stormclouds. 40: Second Mün. 41: Training Days. 42: The Best Laid Plans. 43: A Voyage for the Ages. 44: Mün. 45: Priorities. 46: Pre-emptive. 47: Diplomacy. 48: Pilgrims. 49: Lightning. 50: Through the Eyes of a Child. 51: Under Pressure. 52: Halfway Point. 54: Craters. 55: If you cut us... 56: One Small Step. 57: The Days the World Stood Still. 58: Starseed. Part 4: The Age of Fire. 59: Engines and Engineers. 60: A Thin Red Line. 61: Children of Kerbin. 62: Shrinking the Ellipse. 63: Journeys. 64: Hopes. 65: And Fears. 66: Black Stripes 67: Prospecting 68: For Kerm and Kerbal. 69: A Time for Love. 70: Shaking the Pillars. 71: Crossroads. 72: A Grove for a Grove. 73: No Borders. 74: Hot and Cold. 75: Politics. 76: Blue and Grey. 77: The Skies of Minmus. 78: A Few Good Kerbals. 79: Names. 80: Instincts. 81: The Straw and the Mallek. 82: Darkness Falls. 83: Shattered. Artwork and Crafts I'm absolutely thrilled (and more than a bit humbled) to be adding this section to the contents list. Here are links to various illustrations, screenshots, in-game vehicles and (unbelievably) a mod, from First Flight created by readers of this thread. Enjoy - I know I did! "Those Trashcans definitely made it happen." The Kerbal 1 blasts off on its pioneering first flight. "It's Kerbin... just Kerbin." The Kerbal 1 crew get their first glimpse of their world from high altitude. By Yukon0009. "Four green hands clasped in quiet triumph as Kerbin's very first artificial satellite soared through the void." The Kerbin 1's broadcast from the KIS to kerbals around the world inspires the Speciality Fireworks Company's transformation into the Rockomax Corporation. By minepagan. "Moho 1 has cleared the tower!" Jebediah Kerman rockets into orbit - and history. By Yukon0009. "I think we've just got a very happy kerbal up there." Wilford Kerman notches up his own spaceflight firsts aboard Moho 3. By MarkusA380. "There's parking space to the left as you go through the gates, Ornie." Whether you need to pick up supplies for a morale raising barbecue or tow rocket stages to the VAB, Ornie is your kerbal. By Mr. Pseudonym. "Why don't you just do that, Jonton Kermol." Seen here in typical working garb, the kermol are the vital, rural half of kerbal society. By Krevsin. ------------------- Before the Space Program, before Mainsails and Mun rovers, before there was even such a thing as a probe core, there was just a group of friends with a shared dream who refused to let that dream go. This is part of their story. It was a bright sunlit afternoon as Geneney walked out to the launch pad. He could see the rocket in his minds eye. A gleaming tower of sculptured metal rising into the sky with a cluster of the latest generation engines at the base and the newest, most spacious capsule sitting proudly at the top. Ready to take him to the Mun, to Minmus or anywhere else he cared to go. He sighed. The reality of course was rather different. A rusty launch tower constructed from old scaffolding. A bunker full of worn out monitors and other abandoned electronic gear. And a last ditch attempt at a rocket that they had built from whatever junk they could scavenge up and weld together. Wernher's original LV-1 engine had proven far far more difficult to scale up than any of them had imagined. Getting the stability augmentation system to work had eventually been an exercise in stubbornness rather than elegant engineering. And as for the decouplers. Geneney shook his head. Best not to think about the wretched decouplers. He reached the first of the launch clamps and inspected it carefully. The rocket loomed above him, a battered metal cylinder with a tangle of plumbing at the base, connected to the familiar ribbed shape of the LV-15 engine bell. Four RT-5 solid fuel boosters attached to the sides by explosive bolts and a simple capsule secured to the top with more explosive bolts completed this most unlikely looking spacecraft. In Geneney's opinion 'booster' was an optimistic name for a squat drum of firework propellant with a cone attached to the bottom. As for sticking them on with explosive bolts... No - best not to think about the decouplers. Besides they had worked well enough in testing and none of them had been able to get the hydraulic pusher system to work reliably. Geneney could hear voices far above him as Lucan helped the three cosmonauts into the capsule. An occasional mumbled comment from Bill, Bob's nervous chatter and Jeb, talking up a storm in his enthusiasm. Geneney smiled to himself. Bill was still a believer, Bob... well Bob was loyal. If his best friends were risking themselves in a home-brewed rocket, then Bob would be there alongside them. And as for Jeb, he had never given up, despite all the difficulties, frustrations and exploded prototypes. He'd kept them going, with his permanent grin and irrepressible enthusiasm, even as the other members of the Kerbin Interplanetary Society had gradually drifted away. It helped that the grin hid a surprisingly competent engineer, otherwise Geneney was fairly sure that Wernher would have stuffed Jeb headfirst into the engine bell of the LV-10 test model and probably fired it too. His smile faded. The LV-10 test had been a definite low point and they still hadn't figured out exactly what went wrong. The LV-15 worked, although it wasn't close to being powerful enough and all their attempts to cluster multiple LV-15s together had failed. Eventually even Jeb had conceded that the multiple LV-15 design was just too prone to overheating and suggested using a set of RT-5 'Trashcan' engines instead. All the launch clamps seemed to be in order and a loud clang from above announced that Lucan had finally closed the hatch of the Kerbal 1. Geneney waited as Lucan clambered down the launch tower and the two kerbals hurried back to the control bunker. ------------- Geneney tapped his microphone. "Kerbal 1, this is Control. How are you guys doing up there?" Jeb's voice crackled from the speakers. "Cool, calm and collected, Genie. How's that telemetry looking?" If Geneney knew Bill and Bob, then calm was most probably a lie, let alone collected. No point in breaking the facade though. "Wernher's just running the last tests on the decouplers now Jeb. Five minutes to launch." Wernher pressed a button on his console and grunted in satisfaction as a set of indicator lights winked out. He flicked a switch and all five lights flickered briefly then lit up with a reassuring green glow. "All rocket systems check out. Guidance control and launch sequencing transferred to booster. Ready when you are, Gene." "OK then. We all know what we're doing. LV-15 engine start on my mark, 3 second hold down at full power as a last check, then we release the clamps and light up the Trashcans. That last bit is probably going to be a bit bouncy guys, so as soon as the LV-15 lights you'll probably want to hold on to something." "Gotcha, Genie." Geneney took a deep breath. "LV-15 ignition in five...four...three...two...one.. Mark!" Lucan and Geneney turned towards the main monitor screen. Behind them they could hear Wernher rattling through the ignition checklist. "Firing gas generator, turbopumps powering up and IGNITION!" Fire erupted from the base of the Kerbal 1, rapidly focusing into a single hard bright flame. A steadily increasing rumble could be heard outside as the LV-15 throttled up to full power. "Holding for three...two...one..." The bunker shook to a thunderous roar as all four RT-5s ignited, sending sheets of flame washing across the launch pad. The image on the monitor flared brightly. Spots danced in front of Geneney's eyes as he stared at the screen trying desperately to spot the Kerbal 1 amongst all the static. As the image came back into focus, all Geneney could see was a badly scorched launch pad. The noise in his headphones suggested that this was due to a successful launch rather than a catastrophic explosion but the faint screams didn't sound at all good. The static on monitor 2 didn't look promising either. "Wernher - talk to me!" "LV-15 performing well, all four RT-5s are running. All decouplers intact," came the calm response. "Capsule telemetry and sensors offline." Geneney gripped the arms of his chair tightly. "Which means?" "We have no way of telling how high the capsule is travelling, how fast or at what angle." Lucan interrupted him "If the decouplers haven't fired...I can still hear the engines in my headset, so the rocket should still be in one piece." He snapped his fingers. "The main data cable - it probably just came loose during the launch. Wernher, try SCE to Aux." Geneney's knuckles turned white as Wernher searched for the switch on his console. Then, with a click, monitor 2 lit up, as telemetry suddenly flooded in from the Kerbal 1. A slow smile spread across Geneney's face as he got to his feet and slapped Lucan on the back. Above his head, the numbers for altitude and velocity of the Kerbal 1 were both steadily increasing. ------------ "10 seconds till burnout." Geneney kept his fingers firmly crossed as he waited for the Trashcans to shut down. Five seconds to go, two, one... and nothing. The roar of the engines still filled his headphones. Five more seconds, ten more seconds. He was just turning towards Wernher, when everything went quiet. There was a series of muffled explosions and four lights on Wernher's console winked out. He grabbed the microphone. "Kerbal 1, this is Control. Come in Kerbal 1! Jeb, Bill, Bob - can you hear me!" Jeb chuckled. "Hearing you loud and clear, Genie if you'd let us get a word in edgewise!" "Jeb - thank the Kerm! Are you guys OK up there?" "The Bobcat here is looking a bit blue but we're all good. Nothing but Class A Badasses on this rocket ship!" Jeb paused to savour the moment. "Yeah, this rocket ship...", his voice trailed away. "Dammit guys we did it! Faster than any kerbal has ever travelled, higher than any kerbal has ever travelled and way way noisier than any kerbal has ever travelled! I told you those Trashcans would do the trick!" "Well we've still got a couple of things left to do, Jeb but yeah - those Trashcans definitely made it happen. Thirty seconds of fuel left for the LV-15." Lucan was keeping a close eye on the telemetry. The Kerbal 1 was actually accelerating slightly now as the last litres of fuel drained away, until at last the engines shut down. The last light flickered out on Wernher's console accompanied by a final muffled bang from the speakers. "Shutdown and booster separation confirmed, Jeb. We figure you should top out at around thirty to thirty five thousand metres." "Thanks, Luco. Not bad for a first flight, not bad at all! Looks like I won that bet with the Bobcat too - he reckoned we'd get to twenty five thousand at best!" Bob laughed nervously. "Are you sure they were just the standard Trashcans, Jeb? If we get down from here in one piece, I'm not sure I'll be able to get out of this seat, I got mashed into it so hard." "Didn't touch them, Bobcat. They sure did make for one heck of a ride though. What did you think, Bill? Hey - are you OK there, Bill? That window isn't coming loose is it?" "Oh... Oh wow... Guys you need to see this." Bill silently reached out a hand and Jeb wordlessly passed him the camera. Geneney blinked. He'd never heard Jeb sound like that before. Almost awestruck. "What is it, Jeb?" "It's Kerbin... just Kerbin. Only not quite and all of it at once. And the sky - it's full of more stars than you can believe. Greens and blues and brilliant white clouds and then black and stars." "You're not making any sense, Jeb." "No, no I don't think I am. You're gonna have to see this for yourself, Genie." Geneney sighed. "You know we're never going to get another shot at this. The Kerbal 1 was all we had left," he said sadly. "Actually, Genie, if even half of Bill's photos come out, I think you're going to get to see this quicker than you can imagine and in a bigger and better rocket than you can imagine too. Hey, Bill, if you're done with that camera, pass it over here. Genie, I'm taking off my helmet, sticking the camera into it and wedging it under the control panel for safekeeping." Geneney's jaw dropped. "What, why, what are you doing? What happens if you get an air leak?!" Jeb's voice was uncharacteristically serious. "I'll just have to hold my breath, Genie. Whatever happens to Bill, Bob and me, you need this camera. It's all the proof that the Kerbin Interplanetary Society needs and it's going to change everything." --------- Two small green figures stood on the roof of a makeshift concrete bunker, anxiously peering out to sea. Geneney glanced at his watch and then scanned the horizon again, too nervous to look away for more than a moment. He knew that he probably wouldn't see the capsule from this distance but the parachute should be visible. And it should be visible any moment now. Beside him, Wernher suddenly stiffened and pointed at the sky. An orange streamer popped into view, plunged towards the ground and then fluttered skywards. Geneney's heart was in his mouth. If that was the drogue chute then... YES! Two orange discs burst into the sky and then unfurled into the welcome, welcome sight of two fully opened parachutes. Geneney and Wernher looked at each other, grinned in triumph and then threw themselves down the stairs as fast as they could. "Lucan, Wernher - boat. Now! We've got three kerbonauts to pick up! Epilogue - two days later Four members of the Kerbin Interplanetary Society were lounging about at the Jebediah Kerman Junkyard and Spare Parts Company. Bill was in Jeb's office working on his camera, whilst Jeb was out with a pair of customers, helping them rummage through a pile of old engine parts. As the three of them strolled back towards the office, Geneney overhead snatches of conversation. "Were you boys anything to do with a mighty lot of noise out by that old rusty tower the other day?" Jeb nodded, "Yup, that was us, sir. Testing some bits and pieces from the junkyard." The older of the two customers chuckled. "People back in town reckon they saw one of those rockets flying into the sky." He snorted. "Load of nonsense if you ask me, never mind what those crazy interplanetary characters keep talking about. Although I have to admit, they do make some mighty fine explosions." Genneny stifled a grin as Jeb tried his best to keep a straight face. Just then Bill popped his head around the office door. "Hey guys - photo's came out nicely. You want to take a look?" Jeb smiled. "Love to, Bill." He turned towards his customers politely, "and would you good kerbals care to join us?" Geneney stared at Jeb's office wall. Most of Bill's photographs were blurry views of not very much, taken out of what was obviously a very small window. Several more showed what looked like maps. But none of the eight kerbals crammed into the room had eyes for anything other than the largest picture in the middle. This too was clearly a view through a window but beautifully sharp. A very obviously curved line down the middle separated inky blackness from brilliant blue, dusky brown and lush green. Far away in the distance, the familiar battered grey ball of the Mün rose over Kerbin. Geneney blinked back tears. Jeb was right. They had really done it. They could do it again. And there would be a Space Program.
  5. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    That's for the Merlin 1C. The 1D vacuum can be throttled down to 40%. From figures I've seen quoted for dry masses of the two Falcon stages (if anyone has any good numbers, please share them) the first stage is about 5.5 times heavier than the second stage. We know that 3 Merlin propulsive landings are possible for the first stage (and I'm not sure if the 1D can be as deeply throttled as the 1D vacuum), so single Merlin landings for the second stage don't seem completely implausible, especially since the 1D vacuum is optimised for - well, vacuum and may not be as efficient at sea level. Admittedly there are a lot of 'maybes' in there but I don't see a compelling reason why Raptor is needed for a recoverable second stage.
  6. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    I don't see why investors would care too much to be honest. SpaceX have already demonstrated the ability to bring a complex product to market, handily beating their competitors on price along the way. They've demonstrated persistence and ability to execute once they have confidence in a technology (F9 first stage propulsive landing) and, more importantly a willingness to ditch technologies that either don't work (F9 first stage parachute landing) can't be made to work in a commercially realistic timeframe (propellant crossfeed), or are no longer required (Dragon 2 propulsive landing). It's also worth noting that Elon has no ego when it comes to ditching concepts, that he's been publically gung-ho about (Dragon 2 propulsive landing). Given all that, I don't see that successful launch and 100% of a Falcon Heavy is going to tell investors much at all about SpaceX's ability to develop a completely different launch vehicle running on a completely different engine/propellant combination and with significant structural components built (if I remember rightly) from completely different material.
  7. Well this was a good plan. Your last translation is spot on but it's not what I meant to say. Lets try this on for size:
  8. Working on the next chapter on the go - and I can tell you that having a portable Old Kerba grammar to refer to has just come in very handy! Thanks @superstrijder15. As a mild teaser (and crowdsourced grammar check ) the phrase in question was:
  9. Aldrin Cycler Ships

    The Popular Mechanics article was certainly interesting, especially the Semi-Cycler concept. However I was struck by the logistics of getting a crew to the Cycler which (as proposed in the article) required two launches to assemble the crew vehicle-lander-Earth departure stage stack, followed by a third tanker vessel to top off the tanks before trans-Mars injection. My honest opinion - the SpaceX ITS proposal looks much more straightforward , at least from a mission architecture viewpoint. In terms of hardware, the Semi Cycler vs ITS seems to be a trade off between one, complicated ship that's a big step beyond any currently flying (or slated to fly) vehicle, vs multiple, smaller ships that are closer to current technology). In terms of risk and cost - I'm going to wimp out here and claim too many variables for useful discussion.
  10. The Fan Works Library

    No reason why not. Added to the Finished Works section now! It can always be replaced (or supplemented) by the remastered version in future.
  11. The Fan Works Library

    Welcome to the Library. Please look around and browse. For any comments or suggestions please use this thread. Songs and Poetry The Dream - The Epic of Gilgaman Kerman by AdmiralAndre/ Ode to the Jumbo 64 by Chozo Nomad. Minmus & Company: The consequences of planetary sentience by Commissioner Tadpole. Duxwing's Kerbal Poetry by Duxwing. I See Fire by Duxwing. KSP Open-Mic Poetry by Geschosskopf. Songs of the Travelling Circus by Geschosskopf. The Kraken and the Engineer by Geschosskopf. Krakenmas Carols by GregroxMun. Goodnight Mun by Hayoo. Kuran-Kuran: This is the Moon Laythe by Holo. The Rescue by Jatwaa. The Kraken Waits by Jatwaa. The Forgotten Ones by Kola2DONO. Every Kerbal is Sacred by Krevsin. Jeb by Krob99. The 42 Eggs by MrWalrus123. United States of Kerberica Anthem by Plaatinum Aerospace. Billkermian Rhapsody Song by Precambrianmollusc. Jeb vs Newtonian Physics by Selrahc4040. The Plernets by SpaceSphereOfDeath. T'was the Night Before 0.22 by Tw1. Whackjob's KSP variant of Tim Minchin's 'Drowned' by Whackjob. Jeb's in the saddle by Whackjob. The Kerbal Way by wired2thenet. Use the Probodobyne... by Zuni. Humour The Kerbal Frontier by cy4n. When We Were Lemmings - Sort-of-a-Space-Odyssey by Lar-E. Rendezvous with Karma - Sort-of-a-Space-Odyssey by Lar-E. I, Kerbonaut by Lar-E. An Interview with an Kerbonaut by Poryy. Safety Review by PrivateFlip 2001 - A Space Absurdity by purpleivan. 2010 - The Year we make Kontact by purpleivan. I'm sorry Jeb - but I'm going to have to bench you by Rocket Farmer. The meaning of Fupp by quasarrgames. Geronimi Program by Wayfare. The Kerb Kerman Show! by Xacktar. Graphic Novels Duna, Ore Bust! by Kuzzter. Eve: Order Zero by Kuzzter. From a Childhood Dream by Tw1. Incidents Curse of the Southern Munolith by Alchemist. Kerpollo-Koyuz - First Docking by Agent 30632 Bill's Epic Pout by ArmchairGravy. SCP-2000-FW-Command-Pod-Mk2-3 by Commissioner Tadpole. Very Big Space Program by FlamingPotatoes. When Boredom Leads to Writing by Fred Cop. KSP Fanfic awesome by Fredinno. A Fine Flight by Generalstarwars333. A Gripping Crash by Jarratt51. A very short story by Kokoro. Got-out-and-pushed - by MajorThomas. My Space Program is in utter disarray. by pandora's kitten. Kerbal Space Program - First Steps. Game Story Script - by SquaredSpekz. Tales of the Groundbound: Why by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: The first payment by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: Linus and the Computers by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: Two Eggs in a Basket by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: The Blue Side by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: A perfect answer? by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: A hand into the black by Steuben. Tales of the Groundbound: First Small Steps by Steuben. The Arrtee - Mission in PlanetFactory by Sun. Carnage on the Runway by themaxus. Kerbals meet Apollo 11 by Voyager275. Short Stories Munwalkers by Aceassassin. Where it blows by Agent30632 My KSP short stories by Anomalous_Matter. KSP: First Flight by apolloman. Thrillmaster - Legend of Jeb by Charzy. The Bittersweet Tale of Commander Elbald Kerbal by Chris [bEANS]. Replacement Part by Commander Zoom. Skywalker's Run by Commander Zoom. Outer Space Delivery Men by GabrielG.A.B.Fonseca. The Porthole by Geeny. Landing by Geometrian. A short little WWIIish KSP story by Generalstarwars333. The Story of the Laythean Conflict by Generalstarwars333. Inspiration by GregroxMun. The Story of Jake Kermin by halo2austin. Above and Beyond by Joshmo. A standard supply run by Joshmo. Armes by musicpenguin. Pointed Starward by NASAFanboy. Minmus or Bust by NuclearWarfare The Lunar Incident by NuclearWarfare. Jebediah Kerman - First Kerbal on the Mun by Nutt007. Thrillmaster to the Core by ping111. Off the wall story - Descent by Polyoxide. KSP Short Story by rewdew2. The last flight of Jebediah Kerman by Salamander. A Failed Mission by SpaceOddity. Tales from the Swan - A Turtle stops Flying by Steuben. Tales from the Swan - Last Flight of a Sow by Steuben. Kerbal Space Program - A Lost Hero by swiftgates24. The Discovery of Jool by The Destroyer. Quieter Days by The Error. Tale of a Space Program by The Jedi Master. Jebediah by The Jedi Master. The Beleaguered Return by TheShadow1138 The Beginning of it all - A story of Jeb's first launch by tobjv. On the Altar of Science by Wampa842. A Totally Kerbal Launch by VincentMcConnell. A Kerbal's First Spacewalk by VincentMcConnell. A Shade of Darkness by Vostok. The Story behind an Invention by Xel_AI Fiction Eeloo is no Goddess by Atubara. The Ballad of Chadmore Kerman by tntristan12. Shadows of the Kraken by CatastrophicFailure. Whispers of the Kraken by CatastrophicFailure. The Next Frontier by JakeGrey. Chronicles of an Administrator by Thalamask. First Steps I: First Flight by TotallyNotHuman. After Action Reports Jool of Kerbol system or There and Back Again by czokletmuss. The Grand Tour - Voyage To The Planets by czokletmuss. Duna rescue mission by Duke23. Development - A Journey to Space by Mekan1k. Construction - A Journey to Space by Mekan1k. Vengeance - A Journey to Space by Mekan1k. Colonization: Chapter 1 - Farside Crater by Patupi. Colonization: Chapter 2 - Lalock Valley by Patupi Colonization: Chapter 3 - Tylen Sea by Patupi. Colonization: Chapter 4 - Munbase Alpha by Patupi. Colonization: Chapter 5 - Jool Explorer by Patupi. The Venturer Program: Mission One by RogueMason. Outreach Colony - The home on Duna by RogueMason. The Delivery - A short Journey to Eve by RogueMason. The Venturer Program: Dres Expedition by RogueMason. The Venturer Program: Resurgence by RogueMason. Odysseus - Voyage to Jool by RogueMason. Project Farpoint: The Leap to Eeloo by RogueMason. Resistance - The interplanetary struggle by RogueMason. The Venturer Program - Tour of the Planets by RogueMason. Mission Minmus 12 - Full Story by ThatKerbal. The Colony - Full Story by ThatKerbal. Voyage of the Odin - A Mission to Dres by The Jedi Master. The Godspeed Program - Landing on an Asteroid by The Jedi Master. Letters From Space by Valley. Non Fiction My Theories on the Biology of Kerbals by Aceassassin. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - on Kerbol by Brixmon. A Kerbal's Guide to Earth Sol System by GregroxMun. List of Kerbal Deities by GregroxMun. Theories on the formation of Minmus by Meritania. On the Origin of Kerbals by NASAFanboy. The Kerbal by NASAFanboy. History of Kerbin by Ninjakids. KGSS Journal, Volume 1, Edition 1 by Rich. KGSS Journal, Volume 1, Edition 3 by Rich. KGSS Journal, Volume 1, Edition 2 by Rich. The Hitchhiker's Guide to Kerbals - A Primer on the Species by SkyRender. Kerbalus Invictus - A Biological Essay by The Error. Onto Earth by Zuni.
  12. Manned Mars mission poll

    Citation needed on your first point I would say. How do the costs of developing a state of the art electric propulsion system stack up against developing an ISRU refuelling system and getting it to Mars? The basic science behind either option is understood, the engineering details and costs, I have no idea about but if anyone cares to provide a link to any studies we could debate them. As for the rest - you may be right. Cycler ships, slowboating infrastructure, solar electric propulsion and all the rest, may be the best way to get a lot of people to Mars. I just don't think it's the no-brainer option that you're advocating. If I'm understanding the links on your other thread correctly, the Cycler ship mission profile would use a large, relatively heavy ship with adequate radiation shielding, possibly spin-based artificial gravity to support the colonists on the relatively long journey to Mars. Transport to and from the Cycler at either end of the journey is handled by lighter ships that don't need all the heavy life support gear that the Cycler does. Those lighter ships still have to match velocity with the Cycler at one end and lose that velocity at the other, so they're not exactly trivial to design, build and operate. Then you get into the whole debate of how best to get your crew off the Cycler and down to Mars. Reusable shuttle? Possibly but the logistics of operating and maintaining one out at Mars aren't simple. Limited use shuttle? Possibly but then you need to send a steady supply of them to Mars which to some extent offsets the advantages of your reusable Cycler. Disposable shuttle(s) (aka the MDV and MAV arrangement from The Martian)? Even more ships required, further offsetting the advantage of your reusable Cycler. Also, looking at the Wikipedia link you sent, there are non-trivial tradeoffs in picking a good Cycler. You need to juggle crew journey time, vs frequency of journey, vs non-useful journey time (as in the original Aldrin cycler) where your ship is travelling way out beyond Mars orbit and back. Compare all this to the ITS concept which takes a single ship to Mars surface and back relying on orbital refuelling in LEO and refueling at Mars. Not a remotely trivial thing to design build and operate either but it's a potential workhorse ship for getting everything to Mars on a more flexible timescale than the Cycler ship and/or slowboating colony infrastructure. Sure its maybe a bit over the top for getting infrastructure there but again - you're only using a single ship, rather than a flotilla of different vessels. OK, possibly two vessels - ITS does need tanker support to LEO. But at a pinch that can be achieved using existing SpaceX technology and infrastructure. They already have the infrastructure to get propellant to orbit (on-orbit refuelling yet to be proven) reasonably efficiently with Falcon 9 and (hopefully) in more useful quantities at a time with Falcon Heavy. It's all trade-offs and - until somebody starts trying to fly serious hardware to Mars - mostly speculative trade-offs at this point. All we can say is that either option is going to be expensive.
  13. Revelations of the Kraken (Chapter 9: Pride)

    And a belt feed?
  14. Revelations of the Kraken (Chapter 9: Pride)

    Pfff - that's racing pace that is. You reckon we can ship a couple of pizzas and a case of his caffeinated beverage of choice out to the good @Ten Key? Dude's gonna have a busy couple of weeks with a bit of luck...
  15. LinkSpace - The New Player

    Well unless those Western patents are also valid in China then they're fair game for anyone to use inside China. Provided that the patented technology isn't exported to a country where the patents are actually in force. If you're referring to Chinese patents held by Western companies then you may have a point although anecodotally, the Chinese government is getting tougher on that as well, because even China needs some inward investment and continued disregard for IP law is an excellent way of discouraging that investment. Assuming that you're filing patents to protect your technology (as opposed to just having a big pile of patents to use as lawsuit poker chips or, more charitably, having patents that you can wave at investors to prove that your company has something worth investing in), then they're a good way of protecting said technology but they're not the answer to everything: Do you plan to actually enforce them? Can you afford to enforce them? As already alluded to on this thread, do you mind that your patent will be published, thus disclosing your technology to anyone with a web browser and the ability to spell your company name? If your patented Little Widget only really works with your (already patented) Big Machine, then was another patent for the Widget actually worth it? Can you realistically keep your technology secret, relying on contract law if necessary to enforce confidentiality? In which case, how much will a breach of confidence damage your company? Can you rely on actual security through obscurity rather than patent protection? Can you obfuscate your technology to the point where your competitors could reverse engineer it but its probably not worth their time? Can you rely on first-mover advantage and then good business practices to stay ahead of the competition (again, instead of patent protection). OK your competitors can do what you do but can they do it as well? Do they offer comparable customer service? Can they compete with you on price? There's really no right or wrong answer. Filing patents is a good rule-of-thumb I would say but that's about it. Speaking as somebody who's spent his career working with them in government, the public sector and the private sector.
  16. Manned Mars mission poll

    Oh go on then. Seeing as it's you and seeing as I'm such a huge fan of passive-aggressive backseat moderation, I shall henceforth stick rigidly to the topic at hand.
  17. Had to review my notes for this. Firstly, there's a bit of author's license here I'm afraid. Taleka (singular: talek) wasn't a word that had come up previously but it translates to 'ties' or 'bonds' or possibly 'connections'. My initial draft read: skilda taleka bar-onkerbal bar-onKerm - they cut ties possessed by all kerbals and all Kerm. However it didn't seem likely that something that wordy would survive very long as, what is essentially, a piece of legal shorthand. Much in the same way that Latin phrases still creep into legal terminology on Earth. So I shortened it to: skilda taleka bar-on - they cut ties possessed by all. Then I realised that the case markers should probably go before the noun (markers after the noun being read as negatives), and changed on (signifying dependence on) to an (signifying inclusion) and ended up with: skilda bar-an taleka - they cut ties possessed by all. So your translation of the phrase as 'they cut possession of nation' is pretty accurate! It certainly captures its spirit and intention. Which makes me very happy - firstly that folks are translating Old Kerba at all and secondly that it's consistent enough to make sense even when I throw new words into the mix!
  18. Manned Mars mission poll

    Without a fairly fundamental rethink as to how humanity manages its affairs, colonisation of Mars or anywhere else in the solar system is pointless. Taking the same problems that afflict us on Earth, all the way out to Mars is merely postponing the inevitable. Taking them further than Mars postpones it marginally further at ever increasing cost. And what then? When the solar system is used up, when 'growth at all costs' fills up our hard-won living space, what do we do then? Because, barring a major and implausible scientific breakthrough, we aint going to the stars. When the CO2 levels reach their threshold, when the last barrel of oil is siphoned from the ground, humanity might eke out a few more decades on a frozen rustball, wishing it had a home to go back to. That's what colonisation would get us right now. Going to space for exploration, for the pursuit of knowledge and, hopefully, wisdom. That is a noble pursuit. Going to space to run away from our problems on Earth is not. Edit: "Any man who had ever worked in a hardened missile silo would have felt at home in Clavius. Here on the Moon were the same arts and hardware of underground living , and of protection against a hostile environment; but here they had turned to the purposes of peace. After ten thousand years, Man had at last found something as exciting as war. Unfortunately, not all nations had yet realised that fact." - Arthur C. Clarke: 2001: A Space Odyssey.
  19. Making a Dollar or Two

    Robocrabs in spaaaaaace! And on a serious note that was another fun chapter with some really nice descriptive touches. I especially liked Val picking out the various subsystems by sound alone. Oh - and I saw the sneaky The Martian reference - well played.
  20. Manned Mars mission poll

    To be fair, can you imagine the funding bill for a Mars programme? "Cognisant of the grave financial burden which this venture shall place on American taxpayers and wishing to reduce that burden wherever realistically possible, we Congress hereby mandate the following cost saving measures: Section 3(2)(a)(iii) Mars Descent Vehicle (MDV) The crew compartment of the MDV shall comprise a refurbished Apollo capsule. It's flight proven hardware and the Smithsonian needs the extra space anyway. The MDV engines shall comprise single segment solid rocket boosters derived from Shuttle hardware. It worked for SLS, it'll work for this. The primary thermal protection system shall comprise no less than 87.3% reprocessed corn husk. We don't understand why MDV needs a heat shield anyway as it's not like Mars has any air. Plus the good voters of Iowa are supporting this Program and they deserve your reciprocal support."
  21. Low Earth Orbit Atmospheric Scoops

    OK, first things first - I love the concept. I grew up playing Elite and one of the upgrades to your spaceship in that game was a fuel scoop. The idea of real life fuel scoops tickles every sci-fi nerd bone in my body. However, even if we assume @MatterBeam's numbers add up, the practicalities of deploying a large enough scoop to generate useful amounts of propellant per year seem daunting. The few experiments that have been carried out with tethers for example, have been challenging and a tether looks positively straightforward compared to deploying and controlling several hundred square metres of scoop. This also strikes me as a scaling problem waiting to happen. For example, given the size of the structure involved, even small increases in mass per square meter of scoop material are going to add up quickly, to the point where they knock the rest of your calculations out of kilter. We've also got a lot of demanding material requirements here. The scoop needs to be able to withstand intense UV radiation and reactive oxygen species for years at a time whilst remaining very lightweight and being capable of being folded up into a rocket fairing and then smoothly deployed in space. I do also wonder whether this is a solution in search of a problem. Having thousands of tons of scooped propellant on-orbit sounds great but by the time we're generating sufficient traffic in space to need that propellant, I'm thinking the improvements in launch vehicle technology to lift that traffic to orbit are going to make hauling propellant up from Earth a very competitive option to set against a technically finicky atmospheric scoop.
  22. Manned Mars mission poll

    Agreed. The first poll needs more options. The second poll - apart from a serious doubt about a pre 2024 launch I have no sensible opinion on any of the other options. As for the third poll, 'domes' are the only remotely plausible or morally acceptable option for the foreseeable future.
  23. This isn't the place to speculate on the reasons for that and nor do I intend to put words in your mouth. But for what it's worth - I know that feeling well. Good luck getting the mojo back and if it really is time to call it a day with Kerbfleet - well thank you for all the good times and the best of luck with any new endeavors. As for this reader - il aura toujours le fromage Viva la Science! Viva Kerbfleet!
  24. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    Right - which is why I called it an abort test of sorts, mentioned that I was concerned about debris and specifically pointed out that there was a difference between a recovered capsule and a recovered capsule with live astronauts inside. And I'm aware that the abort tests are milestones in the NASA approved CCDev plan. Amongst many other milestones, which you probably know more about than me but quite a few of which appear to involve the launch abort system. My point was that so far NASA has approved the SuperDraco abort system (contingent on successful testing of course), so, unlike @kerbiloid, presumably doesn't have a problem with the concept. And I can't imagine that something as basic as the acceleration imparted by the system would have escaped their notice.
  25. SpaceX Discussion Thread

    I have a couple of thoughts on this although admittedly, I don't really know enough to say whether my thoughts are worth much. 1. About riding on the edge of a fireball. Isn't this more or less what the capsule is designed to do on the way back down from space? I don't see why it would necessarily be a problem in the event of an abort. 2. We've already had a live abort test of sorts with CRS-7. General opinion afterwards seemed to be that the capsule might have been recovered if the parachutes had been deployed. There's a big difference between 'recovered' and 'recovered with live astronauts in' of course but CRS-7 does suggest that the capsule is pretty rugged. Which is good because as per point 1 above, I'd be more concerned about debris hitting the capsule than riding the edge of a fireball. 3. For whatever reason, SpaceX have already abandoned the idea of propulsive landing for NASA flights but as far as we know are sticking with their pusher mode LES. To me that suggests that NASA is OK with that plan or at the least, considers the risks of a lower acceleration SuperDraco powered abort to be acceptable. After all, a traditional high-G launch escape system is hardly risk free - it's just better than no escape option.