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Everything posted by Lukaszenko

  1. I have some nice "booster" stages of various sizes that can usually achieve full orbit, or enough to give me time to circularize the payload and still land the booster. The "booster" stages are usually augmented by solid boosters which don't get recovered, but are cheap enough not to worry about.
  2. I've actually had instances where I had to pick up a few low-end contracts to scrape together some cash, but I'm playing with no quicksaves/ reverts, and ALL my testing is done in the main game, using my funds. That actually made my manned Duna trip a *bit* of a challenge and something of an accomplishment. But still, generally I don't feel the need to cheat the game for cash.
  3. Since there is limited time, I say that you design the simplest and easiest-to-orbit craft you can come up with (with lots of control authority so it's not an issue). Give instructions to the class how to build it, tell them the basic controls, and have the class play around with it for some short time, maybe to try to get it in orbit. Then show them a step-by-step of how to get it in orbit. This is assuming they all have computers, of course. Basically, a short tutorial of how to get to orbit. Just succeeding in that will tell them a lot about how all this works. I wouldn't mess with mechjeb or even engineer redux. It will just confuse and scare the hell out of everybody. Just make sure the damn thing can reach orbit. Mechjeb and engineer only are useful once you start getting into details and are interested in optimizing the rocket. The point is to show them only the most interesting stuff to get them hooked and explore the issue themselves. Don't bore them with the details.
  4. Either way, going from solar orbit is inefficient. Whether efficiency is a problem or not, does not change the efficiency. It just changes how much you care. Perhaps you should reword your question? Going from solar orbit does take less planning however. Game time and efficiency might be worse, but it might make better use of your real world time.
  5. I told some people about it, but don't advertise it too much besides making it clear that I like it and play it. I'm worried, and apparently rightfully so, that it just wouldn't catch on if I forced them to try it, and then I'd just look like an ass. I was interested in KSP as soon as I heard about it. I figure that's what it takes for someone else to truly enjoy it.
  6. Yeah, that's what I gathered. I'm still confused on the term though. Is "aerocapture" an aerobrake and only an aerobrake to orbit from interplanetary speeds? As in, if you aerobrake while firing an engine, it is no longer an aerocapture? I'm asking because of that Mars probe that got destroyed due to the wrong units...I understood it went to deep into the atmosphere while attempting to do some sort of aerocapture maneuver, no? Or was it supposed to avoid the atmosphere altogether?
  7. This is the part that OP is having problems with. I had the same problem as well. When going 5 km/s, diving deep enough not to fly out of the SOI WILL destroy your heat shield. One solution I found was using the inflatable heat shield, as it seems indestructible (although feels cheaty). But even then, it becomes a fine balance between going deep enough and not getting destroyed by the g-forces. Streetwind, is that the 6.25 m shield you were talking about? I also don't know, but in real life do they rely only on aerocapture when going into orbit around other planets, or do they combine it with firing the engines? Seems like a highly risky and variable maneuver to pull off with only the air. I understand that when lowering an orbit using aerobraking, they make many many passes over a span of months. EDIT: According to Wikipedia, an aerocapture has never been performed in real life. So if it seems difficult in KSP, now you know why
  8. Well they have bring back crew just as much as they have to bring them up there. Plus I hear they have a 6-month or so shelf-life due to their fuel deteriorating.
  9. What's also cool is seeing the Iridium flares if you can catch one. The other day I was out hopelessly looking for it on a overcast night, with no stars or planets visible. And then BAM this thing shone right through the clouds for a couple seconds. Holy ****!, I said to myself.
  10. Besides, in KSP the engines and other parts are already KNOWN to work. It's just a question of whether the whole contraption slapped together will. You can be pretty confident that it will hold up (in KSP and in real life), but nobody's going to go sit in the thing until it's been demonstrated to work.
  11. To make it even more challenging and fun, I don't "simulate", I test. And I use my own funds to do that. SpaceX doesn't "simulate" (well, I'm sure they do to an extent, but bear with me) their rockets and engines, they put them on the pad or strap them on the test rig and fire them up. And they pay for it. If they piggyback their test on top a contract, all the better, but if not, too bad. So far it's proven fun, and I'm still left with more that enough money. How it pans out after I start flying (and testing) interplanetary missions is yet to be seen, but there's always a profitable contract available if I run short of funds.
  12. I enjoy using DRE and always play with it, but I do have some nagging questions that I just couldn't find the answer to anywhere. Perhaps they are buried in this thread, but it is so long and encompasses so many versions of DRE that the answer is impossible to find, or obsolete. The problems I encounter is unexpected behavior of the heat shields. For example, if I come in too hot, the heat shield will overheat and explode despite having lots of ablative surface left. Other times, I've had the ablative surface burn off completely and yet the heat shield held up. Is this normal behavior, and if so what exactly does the ablative surface do? Another thing, where exactly should a question like this be posted in the future?
  13. Are pilot probes sufficient to figure what trajectory is needed...don't they need at least similar ballistic coefficients to be useful? Any other variables I should look into?
  14. When using the inflatable heat shield, I always add LOTS of control authority, usually with a lot of reaction wheels. For realism you could replace that with RCS or with the new vernor motors.
  15. Anybody have any tips for not using quicksaving when playing with FAR and DRE? The only way I could ever get a proper aerobrake is simply trial and error. I just can't see playing a multi-hour interplanetary mission and losing my ship because I dipped a bit low into the atmosphere. As for an idea for making the game more challenging, has anybody tried playing where you have to use your funds for all testing purposes? This could easily make each mission multiple times costlier.
  16. Interesting idea on paper, but I do see some issues. For one, it looks like KSP but with MANY more parts and MANY more variables and MUCH more detailed physics. The deeper you want to go, the more computer power it takes, and it can quickly escalate to requiring a supercomputer, or letting a regular computer render the simulation overnight. Two, how deep exactly do you want to go? To design an actual spaceship takes countless man-hours simply designing each and every component piece-by-piece, bolt-by-bolt on a CAD station. Then indeed they probably run the whole things on multiple-thousands of Euro software on high-end workstations. Overnight/ week. So perhaps the thing you are asking for already exists, but is still computer generations away from being practical. And then, when trying to make a spaceship, exactly how many hours do you want to spend designing an electrical cable routing for the toilet light? .01? 1? 20? Besides this and other concerns, I could indeed see a more complex and/or more tweakable version of KSP being fun. But one must be very careful to not get carried away and make it overly complex and mundane.
  17. I actually ALMOST designed some nicely recoverable stages, but indeed it does require them pushing my ship (and therefore themselves) all the way to a stable orbit. It gave me a good use for the vernor engines to stabilize the usually long stage while landing ( I, and I wonder if the developers, got the idea from problems experienced and solved by SpaceX). The only thing I'm missing is a good set of landing legs that can survive reentry.
  18. So I tried playing with no reaction wheels for more "realism", and I learned that indeed suspension of realism is sometimes necessary in the interest of fun. But, at least now I know precisely why. IRL they also spend countless man-hours optimizing trajectories and burns and timings, and when they finally perform them they know exactly when, where, and how long. In KSP, sometimes you make a burn, you overshoot, you turn around, then left and then right and then your're close enough....and I just spent half my ship's mass worth of RCS
  19. I know real life reaction wheels saturate, but I've also been hearing that KSP ones are way overpowered and perhaps perform some other dubious physics tricks. What are the real differences? How much overpowered are they? Could they be used IRL to stabilize an EVE ascending spaceship, for example? If the differences between KSP and IRL are large, is there a mod to make them behave more realistically? I'm basically trying to figure out if I should continue using reaction wheels as I have been, install said mod (if it exists), or ditch reaction wheels altogether and use RCS for realism. I understand Newton's laws and all that, but when it comes to angular momentum and gyros and gimbals, it's still a bit tricky for me to wrap my head around how it all should work.
  20. FYI, an extreme example of what the structural fairings let you push up into space:
  21. According to this, it was introduced in either version 1.2 or 2.2, but I'm not really sure how to interpret the version history notes. Anyway, I don't recall ever reading about it. I just stumbled on the "Auto-strut" tweakable one day and that's how I figured it out, but it was definitely some time after I started using FAR.
  22. You sure you had two fairing bases facing each other? What you described sounds like a classic symptom of only having one fairing base. The behavior shows that the fairing is clearly more rigid than the payload, and it's just a matter of attaching the two together. If not, perhaps your "Auto-struts" option was off? Or nonexistant, due to older version?
  23. Of course it's true! Hell, you can even turn it off if you wish.
  24. The fairings from Procedural Fairings can also be structural, which is relevant to OPs problem. The key is to put a second fairing base on top of the payload, facing down. The payload is then stiffly braced from top and bottom and all problems are solved...at least until the fairings are jettisoned . But, by then the problem is reduced because usually space engines don't make that much thrust. Nevertheless OPs rocket looks pretty extreme and could still benefit from a redesign as per other posters' suggestions.
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