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About Spica

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  1. Inventing Calculus at age 22 during a plague outbreak that sent him home from school is at least a little more noteworthy than "what every pupil does in school".
  2. Even better, if you are lagging behind another vessel in your orbit and you want to catch up with it, you need to slow down. The reverse is true as well. If you are leading another vessel and want to "slow down" to rendezvous with it, you need to speed up. Admittedly any KSP player figures this out after his/her first attempt at orbital rendezvous, but that doesn't change how wrong it feels at first. In fact, this is the very topic that Buzz Aldrin wrote his thesis about.
  3. Modern IRST (InfraRed Search and Track) systems operate in the mid-infrared. That makes active camouflage very difficult if not impossible to pull off. Engine exhaust, onboard electronics, and adiabatic compression of the oncoming air will necessarily heat aircraft surfaces well above ambient temperatures, making the aircraft literally glow in the mid-IR. Counter-illumination can't possibly make an object darker. Claiming the DoD "spreads" conspiracy theories to hide technology is itself a conspiracy theory, I don't see how this claim holds any water on its own.
  4. Purple algae as they may have evolved on Earth would face many obstacles today and in the future. First being that green plants reflect away the green light that purple plants need. Green plants dominate the productive regions of the Earth, leaving little room for purple plants to take hold. Additionally green plants produce oxygen which would have been highly toxic to any purple plants that came before, just as elemental chlorine is toxic to green plants and other aerobic organisms around today. And anyway, green-plant photosynthesis as it stands is such a "hard" process to evo
  5. Take a look at this page for guidance on and ideas for laser guns: http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/sidearmenergy.php There's plenty of reading on this topic to do on this page and the page for "convectional weapons"
  6. Shocks are highly nonlinear and definitely not smooth processes, so potential flow solutions should not be valid across a shock. The flow across an oblique shock isn't irrotational as far as I am aware, which would also break any potential flow solutions across one.
  7. A wing whether finite or infinite in span still sheds a starting vortex upon the onset of lift generation, and therefore there still must be real bound circulation about the wing. Of course there isn't a little tornado attached to the wing in flight, but if you were to photograph the induced flow around a wing section near the root you would still see an overall vortical flow pattern. I am fairly sure you could photograph this in a water tunnel if the camera and water were stationary, and the airfoil was moved down the test section. Tracers (dust, glitter, bits of dye...) could
  8. Cooling is a minor problem for SSTOs, since they're required to be super bulky to fit all the hydrogen fuel needed to reach orbit. That large volume comes along with a large surface area which makes re-entry heating much milder. Lower ballistic coefficients allow the bulk of atmospheric braking to happen at higher altitudes, trading a large reduction in heating intensity for a greater heating duration. The real problem with SSTOs is, and I can not stress this enough, structural weight. Nuclear powered air-breathing SSTOs suffer doubly from excess weight, since they need to carry heavy air
  9. The coming possibility of high-powered battlefield lasers might shift the balance away from missiles. The F-35B for example has a little over 21 MW of available shaft power that normally drives the lift fan, even 10% of that energy as a laser beam ought to be able to do significant damage to any incoming missiles. Remember, simply destroying any externally mounted sensors is enough to severely degrade or destroy the performance of any incoming missile, and that will certainly take less energy than outright destroying the incoming threat. A collection of high powered pulsed lasers aboard a
  10. One thing to also be aware of is the surprisingly limited range of laser weapons. At visible light wavelengths and "sane" primary mirror diameters they're typically limited to a few tens to hundreds of kilometers at most. If you've played "Children of a Dead Earth" on Steam you'll get an idea of the implications of this. It forces engagement ranges down significantly enough that guns (be they electromagnetic or chemical) become useful as weapons. This is a very good idea, Atomic Rockets is absolutely full of useful information for hard sci-fi spacecraft design.
  11. Compact, maneuverable spaceships may definitely exist, but they will almost certainly take the form of unmanned missiles. Realistic close-quarters space combat engagements are likely to happen too quickly for a human-in-the-loop to be useful. They may be powered by chemical rockets or high performance NTRs. Low performing nuclear pulse drives or even nuclear salt water rockets might be seen on larger drones with higher ∆v capability, assuming of course that riding a criticality accident can be made a useful form of propulsion. Lasers, electron beams, dustguns, kinetic missiles, and nuk
  12. Unfortunately photon thrusters are anything but infinite propulsion. If the energy to be used in powering your thruster is carried along with your ship, you will not be very impressed by its performance. A 100% efficient photon rocket powered by uranium can reach no more than ~250 km/s under it's own power. That's plenty fast for getting around the solar system, but a terrible waste of the energy contained in the uranium. If the rocket instead uses that energy stored in the uranium to accelerate exhaust you can go much, much faster. If the same amount of energy that the photon r
  13. I think the problems you're facing come from the fact that all orbits in KSP are measured in a plane parallel to the ecliptic. However, the reference plane that inclination and LAN are measured about for planets is the equator of that planet, not the ecliptic plane. The angle difference between the ecliptic and planetary equator is messing up the orbital elements.
  14. I'm probably doing something wrong with my install, but for me the 1.2.0 release doesn't work (no axial tilt appears on any planet), the exception that I see in the console is: Exception: TypeLoadException: Could not load type 'TiltEm.TiltEm' from assembly 'Tiltem, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=null'. I'm using it in a fresh KSP 1.7.3 install with the latest Kopernicus and required dependencies, and no other mods for testing. I have also tried KSP 1.7.1 with and without Kopernicus, and KSP 1.7.2 without Kopernicus.
  15. RSSVE does not support KSP 1.7.1 from what I can tell, so if you want it to work properly you should use KSP 1.6.1 Moreover, if you are trying to use Realism Overhaul, you should definitely use 1.6.1 as well. RSSVE works perfectly if you follow the instructions on the github wiki perfectly.
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