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Found 27 results

  1. Kerbal Express Airlines is in need of updating its aging fleet of regional jets and turboprops. It's a big client, operating at hundreds of airports around Kerbin, and that means big fleet sales. Does your aircraft company offer the right kind of aircraft for the job? Kerbal Express wants profitable aircraft. They're looking for aircraft that meet or exceed their requirements for fuel efficiency, speed, range, passenger load, ease of training, and cost of maintenance, for the right price that gives them the best return on investment. They also want a design that's flexible, offering variations of the same design for a variety of different routes. The Rules: KSP version 1.3 or 1.2.2 (Craft file must import into 1.3 for judging). Stock parts + Airplane Plus (optional) only. The Mk1 and Mk2 Crew Cabins count as 8 Passengers Mk3 Passenger Module and Size 2 Crew Cabin count as 24 Passengers Small aircraft must have at least 1 pilot in a cockpit, and medium-large at least 2 pilots. No command seats. No reaction wheels. Air breathing engines only. No overly wacky designs or "spaceships", it must look like a modern aircraft. Minor clipping is allowed, within reason. A rolling runway takeoff is required. Takeoff & Landing speed of no more than 80 m/s (Use flaps to achieve this, if necessary) Flaps must be set to toggle on action group Custom 01 Your aircraft must stay intact. [No drop tanks, etc.] Model variants may only have minor differences between them to be considered. 15,000m altitude limit. Mach 1 speed limit (343 m/s) TweakScale is allowed, just please don't ruin the spirit of the challenge with it. Submission Deadline: 9AM PST, 7/6/2017 What is a variant? To improve your design's competitiveness, your company can submit a variant of the same design (See Wants section below). A variant is built on the same model platform with minor changes in design to give it, say, extra range, or extra passenger room. This is most commonly achieved by adding fuel tanks or lengthening the cabin, sometimes with minor changes to wing and emmpanage design. To qualify as a variant, it must generally have the same structural layout, meaning engines, gear, and lift surfaces must be in roughly the same location & design. Basically, if you make it too different, it will be considered a separate model/submission. What Kerbal Express Air Wants, By Category: For all categories, Range will be calculated by total fuel capacity divided by fuel burn rate at the recommended cruising speed & altitude. Turboprop Range of at least 800km Cruising Speed of at least 130 m/s 24 Passengers, and optional 32 Passenger variant Small Regional Jet Range of at least 1000km Cruising Speed of at least 220 m/s 32 Passengers, and optional 40 Passenger variant with an extended range of at least 1200km. Medium Regional Jet Range of at least 1500km Cruising Speed of at least 240 m/s 72 Passengers, and optional variant with extended range of at least 2000km. Judging Criteria: Every submission that meets the requirements will be ranked w/ feedback from Kerbal Express Jet test pilots, but how well it ranks depends on: How well it meets or exceeds the category requirements How well it meets or exceeds the requested variant Cost of Aircraft Fuel Efficiency at recommended cruising speed & altitude Ease of maintenance; fewer parts and fewer engines are preferred How to Submit (See Example Submission in post below). Your post must include the following: The name of your aircraft company and model names for the designs you're submitting. At least one screenshot of your designs. A link to your craft files in your submission post. No PMing me. The price of your aircraft times 1,000,000. (If $23,555 in-game, submit as $23,555,000. This is just for fun to make prices more realistic.) The recommended cruising speed and altitude for your aircraft. This is the speed and altitude you've fine-tuned your designs for, ensuring the best balance of speed, range, and fuel efficiency. It's also what the test pilots will be testing your aircraft at for judging. (Optional, but will help in review) Pitch your aircraft to the Kerbal Express Airlines executives, selling them on why it should be purchased for their fleet. Include any notable features (even if fictional). ========================================================================== Challenge Submissions & Rank Turboprop Kramer - 50-100/150 Avery, A well balanced turboprop with good all-around performance and handling characteristics. Small Regional Jet Kembraer ZO-135, While unconventional in design, the Krembraer ZO-135 performed excellently, besting the competition in every way. Pizio & Hartmann Co. - Bluebell A+, Well featured, and meets all of our requirements at a reduced price. Osprey Regional Jet ORJ400/500, A well-rounded aircraft, meeting our requirements in all areas. Kerbolde Supersonic Jet - AAA072-1, An efficient, high-performance aircraft, but its supersonic speed significantly restricts its use over populated areas. ScarsTarsProducts - Vulture-01, A beautiful looking aircraft with excellent flexibility, but it burns fuel like a mofo. Medium Regional Jet One More Booster Co. - Kerb Ferry 72, Sturdy for cargo use, but its high fuel burn rate and steep price make it expensive for commercial passenger use. Kramer. - 150-100 Baltimore, Expensive, inefficient, loud, and too big. The Baltimore fails to be competitive on all fronts.
  2. Hey guys! I thought of a challenge for you guys; if I could draw a design or an artwork/paintings of anything (KSP related), See if you be able to make it and build it in ksp and post your pictures here. (sorry if there are similar challenges like this before in this forum, I did not have time to do a bit of searching) ok let me upload some drawings!!
  3. First off, it's not my first rodeo in KSP. However, I found that one of my greatest challenges for interplanetary missions is designing a ship that is aerodynamically stable while performing an aerocapture maneuver. The primary reason for this is that rockets are naturally bottom-heavy, especially when launched from KSC. So while one can easily place an inflatable heat shield between the launch abort system and the command module, the center of mass will be so far back that the ship will tend to flip unless you add a ton of drag to the back end, in the form of literally tons of fins or more creative means. That was my first instinct, and I ended up with various semi-successful designs including turbine-like fins and infernal robotics deployed drag-inducers (heat shields). This solution isn't consistent, so I started designing ships to aerobrake engine-side first. Designs, using KIS/KAS, included using winches to haul a massive heat shield in front of the engines, assembling a heat shield in situ, or robotic arms moving radial shields into a heat shield snow plow design. Then came my most successful design concept - separation. I started designing ships to separate into two equally massive halves and aerocapture separately. Then would then rendezvous and rejoin after they left the atmosphere. The two halves were always much more stable than attempting to aero break with my typical burj khalifa looking design. My question is: what have been your successful solutions? I have a sneaking suspicion that there is a more elegant one out there.
  4. First off, it's not my first rodeo in KSP. However, I found that one of my greatest challenges for interplanetary missions is designing a ship that is aerodynamically stable while performing an aerocapture maneuver. The primary reason for this is that rockets are naturally bottom-heavy, especially when launched from KSC. So while one can easily place an inflatable heat shield between the launch abort system and the command module, the center of mass will be so far back that the ship will tend to flip unless you add a ton of drag to the back end, in the form of literally tons of fins or more creative means. That was my first instinct, and I ended up with various semi-successful designs including turbine-like fins and infernal robotics deployed drag-inducers (heat shields). This solution isn't consistent, so I started designing ships to aerobrake engine-side first. Designs, using KIS/KAS, included using winches to haul a massive heat shield in front of the engines, assembling a heat shield in situ, or robotic arms moving radial shields into a heat shield snow plow design. Then came my most successful design concept - separation. I started designing ships to separate into two equally massive halves and aerocapture separately. Then would then rendezvous and rejoin after they left the atmosphere. The two halves were always much more stable than attempting to aero break with my typical burj khalifa looking design. My question is: what have been your successful solutions? I have a sneaking suspicion that there is a more elegant one out there.
  5. What is the Kopernicus Creativity Marathon? An open competition for those who want to build planets. Every three weeks, a new challenge, describing what sort of planet or celestial body we are looking for. After the closing date for each challenge, the planets shall be judged and the winner shall be put in the Community Planet Pack. Judging: Planets shall be judged by thee following characteristics: Beauty: How attractive they are to view, and the level of detail and apparent effort was put into the world. Accuracy: How closely they match the challenge guidelines. Creativity: How unique and original is the planet, its features, and its use of procedural generation and/or textures. General Entry Rules: Planets must be made using an up-to-date version of Kopernicus and Kerbal Space Program. Any planets that are not updated to the current version will be disqualified. Planets must be created for this contest. No planets released in other planet packs may be entered. Any planets must be entered for the competition before the completion of each challenge. After the final day, submissions will be ignored. All planets must be released to myself under an MIT license, such that the worlds can be polished and made more consistent with each other so they can be released as a community planet pack. We can discuss alternate licenses in the private messenger. All credit will be given to the creators of the planets. Any entry containing a generic Space Engine export will be disqualified, however those which use the in-game editor may not be if it looks good in KSP. One planet per person per challenge round. Co-operation with other people is fine, but must be restricted to one planet per team. The above two rules may be loosened if a challenge calls for a specific number of bodies together. No plans, ideas, screenshots/images, or files regarding your planet may be shared until the completion of the challenge round for which it was designed. -CURRENT CHALLENGE ROUND- Post Date: July 18th, 2017 Closing Date: August 8th, 2017 Time: 3 Weeks The terrestrial space agency NASA has just released topographical data of one of their solar system's dwarf planets, Pluto. As such, the gods of the Solar System are gloating at us. We must one-up them. Your task is to design an icy dwarf planet oribiting the sun outside Eeloo. GUIDELINES/RULES: -Take inspiration from the known dwarf planet terrains: Pluto, Charon, and Triton. -Its orbit must be apparently stable, and not particularly ridiculous. -Try to strike a balance between realism and beauty. -Planetary radius should be between 70km and 180km, with a density between 1.5 g/cm^3 and 2.5 g/cm^3. --Radius, Mass, Density, and Gravity are related, in Earth-relative units, as G = M/(R^2) = R*D. --Earth density = 5.51 g/cm^3. Earth radius = 6370 km. --If your values for geeASL don't fit within the radius and density, then it will be lowered in the polishing phase. -You may add a small minor moon if you wish, but it will be judged separately from the dwarf planet. If it is not satisfactory it will be removed.
  6. As I said on my own page I will update the pod again and in my absence I have improved my modelling skills and experience just a little bit for texturing though so ver.1.9 soon!!! Sorry for the delay Gamax AND Co.
  7. Hello All, I recently learned that I'm heading back to school to do some postgraduate study and I need an excuse to revise and touch up my MATLAB skills. Simultaneously I have been grappling with the SSTO design problem and the fact that I cannot find any tools that will guide me in the design of an SSTO and payload. My thought is that while fluid dynamics was not my strong suit (I am a mechanical engineer) the simplified modelling of KSP should make this a reasonable endeavour with a bit of research. My a first step will be to produce an aircraft design tool that I will input a desired payload, ceiling and perhaps a few other parameters and the program will output required thrust, lift surface area and required coefficient of friction. In this way, the 'art' of aircraft design still exists because you have to design something within those parameter (x lift surface, y kN of thrust etc) so but at least the science gives you a starting point. Would be keen for thoughts, guidance, advice or be pointed at any existing tools. Good flying
  8. Challenge: Design and model a fully-reusable PSTO (parallel stage to orbit) shuttle, suitable for taking a crew to orbit and returning them safely to Earth. People get excited about SSTOs (both of the VTVL and winged varieties), but for Earth, using multiple stages is almost always more cost-effective. However, we've never once flown a fully-reusable human-rated shuttle, and there's no obvious configuration for a fully-reusable shuttle that uses staging. In particular, I like the idea of a parallel-stage-to-orbit design, where all the launch engines fire on the pad together, with the orbiter engines continuing to fire through stage separation (think Space Shuttle). This introduces additional complications, particularly with respect to configuration. Some considerations: 0/0 LAS. Being able to escape in the event of a booster RUD is ridiculously important, from pad to separation. The orbiter either needs to have sufficient thrust to push itself free of an exploding booster, or it needs auxiliary solids for LAS, or it needs full cabin ejection with chute recovery. COM/COT. Centers of mass and thrust in a vertically-stacked launch vehicle are simple, but for a parallel-staged launch vehicle, it's a little more difficult. The SSMEs had ridiculously high gimbal ranges to help with this, but with a fully-reusable launch stack things may be more or less complicated. Engines and crossfeed. Using the same engines and fuel on the orbiter and the booster simplifies operations and can also allow for fuel crossfeed, but that does introduce some additional complications. If the launch engines are used for orbiter LAS, then they will be large enough to take full advantage of propellant crossfeed. Booster recovery. A liquid fly-back booster is one option; a RTLS tail-sitting booster with landing legs a la Falcon 9 is probably better. No splashdowns for this. Asymmetric thrust and COM may be a consideration depending on how the launch configuration looks. Orbiter recovery. Again, no splashdowns. The orbiter can have wings and landing gear, or it can come back and land vertically with landing legs. However, if it is going to land on its tail, then the crew cabin probably needs to be ejectable using landing-abort solids and chutes, since a tail-first vertical landing is a high-risk maneuver. The ideal solution is to have landing engines which (somehow) can vector or change orientation to allow a vertical landing in horizontal attitude, like sci-fi spaceships. This allows minimal-risk landing and immediate egress. Lifeboat. If the cabin is ejectable, then it makes sense to allow it to act as an orbital lifeboat in the case of orbiter damage a la Columbia. However, this means it either needs its own RCS and TPS. It may be possible to integrate its RCS and TPS for use within the orbiter. Airbreathing. Should you use a rocket-combined-cycle airbreathing engine on either stage? It's a good question. On the one hand, having airbreathing engines on the booster reduces the weight penalty (since they don't have to go to orbit) and can assist in recovery. Having an airbreathing engine on the orbiter increases weight penalty, but could be helpful for landing since airbreathing engines are more readily vectorable than rocket engines, which must be gimballed. It's also possible to conceive a partial airbreathing engine, like an air augmentation shroud on the booster which wraps around the orbiter's launch engine. Altitude compensation. If the orbiter engine doesn't have altitude compensation, it will incur a specific impulse penalty. However, aerospike engines are heavy. An SSME pressure-compensated engine is one possibility. Another possibility is to have the orbiter engine interface with the booster body in such a way as to allow a higher expansion ratio after separation. Keep in mind, however, that you may be using the launch engine for recovery as well. Cargo. A cargo bay is not necessarily a requirement, but it definitely adds versatility. A cargo bay can also be used to add an auxiliary fuel tank for extended on-orbit operations or BLEO missions. Consider orbital refueling as well. I have a few ideas for how to pull this off, but I'm really interested to see the kinds of things the forum can come up with. There are a lot of options here, and none of them are automatically ideal. Design, describe, and model your submission! You don't necessarily have to fly it; it will probably be ridiculously overpowered for stock KSP. Excited to see what everyone comes up with.
  9. I have a simple little question about space plane design that I think might inspire some discussion around here today, it may be obvious for some but for people like me it really isn't, which is why i'm asking. Because I'm one of those weirdos who doesn't enjoy building rockets as big as they can be! I prefer more compact -pocket sized rocket- spacecraft. In order to do this many of my spaceplanes incorporate drop pods in their construction to assist with accent. Basically just a fuel tank on a decoupler bolted to the belly of the aircraft which is jettisoned when empty, usually while still in the upper atmopsphere My question is to ask you out there weather or not drop pods affect the inherent SSTO nature of a spaceplane or not. Given that hitting the stage function would eject the pods giving the vehicle more than one stage, it does not really change much about the spaceplane's configuration. Drop pods are actually used by fighter jets IRL when traveling long distances, its pretty far fetched to think about a fighter jet with drop pod fuel tanks as a two stage vehicle. don't you think? I want to know if you think that drop pods would make a spaceplane multi-stage?
  10. Even though I have 15,000 excess science.. it's not enough. I found I had not yet landed on any of the Jool moons. Bad Kerbals! So, i decided I would take a lab with me, and make a single lander that can hit all the moons except Laythe (requires a specialized design). Tylo being the biggest challenge, because of its very high gravity/size, it's like landing on Kerbin without an atmosphere. So I designed a lander with some jettisonable fuel, with the idea I would go to Tylo FIRST, and then wouldn't need those tanks for Vall, Pol, or Bop. I would bring my lab with me as an undockable section, with its own fuel, RCS, etc. Unfortunately, I forgot to put a probe controller on it, but that's OK, I'll just have the lander always dock to it. The small docking ports are for refueling (note that I can't refuel the lander without the lab until I jettison the tanks, but might have been nice to put one on an external tank just in case.). The lab acts as the big com relay back to Kerbin, if needed. And, of course, I need to refuel constantly, so I made a one-piece driller/ISRU/fuel transport, with a small docking port for refueling the lander/lab sections. Small engine to just handle interplanetary and landing on Pol. Checking out the dV for the lander, the DV maps *say* I need about 2280 to land and take off at Tylo, with 4750, I *should* have enough, right? (more on this later). It may take a low starting orbit, but on paper, it should work. So, first we get up into Kerbin orbit, and head to Minmus to refuel everybody for the long drive to Jool. Note that I was able to keep the lower booster from Kerbin, so it took two refueling runs, but the landing section would come into Jool with plenty of fuel, while the driller would come into Jool orbit with maybe only 800 dV, probably enough to get to Pol on its own, but this added extra insurance. Turns out I had plenty, transfer, orbit and landing is maybe 500-700. We refuel everyone at Pol, and head to Tylo. Now, I begin to worry- if I start my landing low (say 17km), and get back to a low orbit, can my fuel ship dip down that low to refuel (before landing and after re-orbit), and climb back out the gravity well and get back to Pol and land? The answer, it turns out, is yes. I leave about 1000 dV for each run back to Pol. So, we try our first descent from 17km. We learn two things. (1) You can't start from 17km because you can't slow down fast enough before gravity sucks you into a mountain. If you thrust downward enough, you use too much fuel. So we raise the descent to about 30km. That works well, but we land with only about 2100 dV left, not nearly enough to get back into orbit. It turns out it takes about 2500 dV to get to a roughly 10km orbit. Yep, this looks bad. So, after failed attempts, I realize I need help. So I built another fuel/engine "top" component to provide more fuel (and the thrust to counter its extra weight). Note that I added a decoupler to the docking ring, because those BIG docking rings have enough magnetic attraction they don't come loose easily. I am still granted the proper dV, but I didn't want to have something that might crash on top of me and explode after landing. With this component and some careful piloting, I'm able to land with about 2561 dV left. Note that I hit hard when I landed and broke a strut, but I should still be fine for Vall. 2561 was enough to put us back into a 9kmx20km orbit, with enough dV left to re-dock with the science section. Then the refueler only had to make one stop! So, the major lesson learned is- don't trust the dV maps. It took about 2600-2800 dV to land and 2300-2400 to reach stable orbit, and that's with optimal piloting. But other than that, the "two ships, single lander for four moons" project is so far a success, and has passed the toughest test.... Tylo, with only one landing strut as a casualty.
  11. I was not sure where to put this and this seemed to most relevant place. If i'm wrong i do apologize. In 40 days an asteroid is going to impact Kerbin. I want to catch it and put it in a stable orbit to use as a mining station for re-fueling. So I need a ship that can grab it, divert it from an impact then maneuver it into a stable orbit around Kerbin. I am probably going to have to assemble it in orbit, one section at a time with docking ports but aside from that i just don't know what to do. Any suggestions?
  12. I spent the last week or so designing my own spacecraft. The capsule, rocket, space suit, engine, control panel, everything! Here are pictures (some aren't completed): The spacecraft The full assembly Spacecraft labeled Spacecraft diagram Control panel (incomplete) Rocket diagram Engine/turbopump diagram Space suit diagram Hope you liked it, feel free to give any thoughts on it (and yes, it is based off of Mercury).
  13. I'm trying to work my way up the tech tree towards space planes, because my designs tend to require a fuel stop in Kerbin orbit. But until I get there, I have to make do with wasteful trips to my station at 250km. I've considered building an ore refinery on Minmus, but it sounds like a lot of work. I have a design that delivers about 1,700 units of Liquid Fuel (and matching Oxidiser) at a price of 47.9 per unit. I tried experimenting with recoverable rockets, e.g. by adding 12 parachutes to my design, but the recovery cost didn't make any sense when return costs were factored in (500 liquid fuel left in for deceleration, plus apoapsis/mass losses on the way up due to the parachutes). I was getting about 10,000 - 15,000 recovery. I challenge you to do better, my refuel ship is attached! (has an Engineer Redux) This translates into 75.85 / unit at 100km orbit of the Mun (I can send 6480, with 4092 arriving).
  14. Hi, novice kerbonaut here. I've successfully designed and created multiple SSTOs of all classes that are Mun and Minus capable, thanks to many of the topics here and KSP tubers. Some important tips are: 1. Low drag is better than high thrust (Thank you GoSlash27 and Warzouz) 2. Control surface placement is key (Thanks to physics) 3. Centre of mass ahead of centre of lift (Just try and see what happens if not) 4. Static incidence in wings, i.e. tilt your wings to include a little angle of attack while level so that thrust in prograde can still generate positive climb without control surface drag losses.(GoSlash27 at God level IMO) 5. Try to ensure dry center of mass remains within 5% deviation from its initial position (preferably at the center for maximum aerodynamic control authority) Tip number 5 is where I struggle with. I try optimising my vehicles by messing around with fuel placement, but can never seem to keep track centre of mass within those limits. (Sorry, will not be attaching craft files just yet). Most of the time, this shift is unavoidable until I use radially placed fuel tanks and engines, which comes into direct contradiction of tip 1, and tip 1 always gets more preference for efficiency purposes. So to conclude, I'm asking for tips about how my designs can incorporate that last shred of increased efficiency through smooth control.
  15. Air to Air Refueling Like a Boss This tutorial is meant to provide you with all the tips and tricks I've learned from other forum members, as well as new ideas I've been working on myself. Some terms you'll need to know before you begin are: The flying gas station is called the Tanker. The hard line from the tail of the Tanker is called a Flying Boom. A flexible hose with a cone at the end is called a Drogue Line. The plane being filled is called the Receiver. And lastly the ridgid snorkel on a Receiver, used to capture the Drogue. Is called the Probe. Probe and Drogue - In the real world this came first (kinda) and is in some ways more forgiving for beginners to engage the Drogue with a Receiver plane mounted Probe. The downside is if you bump the Drogue it'll flop all over the place until aero forces stabilize it again. This method provides a flexible line connecting both planes to allow a larger bubble of movement while refueling. In KSP this is the easier way to dock two or more planes together but if performed in an "Undocked" state. Which allows independent control of each plane. (You will most definitely crash if both planes are "Docked") There is no ability to transfer fuel between the two planes when using a KAS winch in "Undocked Mode". This is great for cinematics and screenshots, just not for actual fuel transfer. Additional Info / Pictures Of The Assemblies: Flying Boom - This is a rigid connection between both planes. In the real world this was developed second. In order to transfer more fuel in a shorter period of time. In KSP this is the most functional as this is the best way to remain in control while actually transferring fuel. Once you "Dock" both planes together they will fly as a single plane. In which case, most of your pitch control will come from the Receiver plane. So often the connection of the fragile boom needs to be reinforced by Quantum Struts, immediately after docking has occurred. If you don't reinforce the connection immediately after docking, the planes can twist apart within seconds depending on the design of the planes and the boom. Additional Info / Pictures Of The Assemblies: V-22 Osprey, Refueling from a KC-10 Extender And Now, Onto The Tutorial The mods I suggest using to perform this task are RKE Kanadarm for the Flying Boom, and also for the Probe tubes. The reason these are the best parts to use for the tubes is they are physics-less and don't flex / separate under loads. KAS if you are using the Probe and Drogue method. IR / IR Rework if you want to be able to move anything. Also MechJeb is recommended as it makes aligning the two planes much easier - Using "Spaceplane Guidance" If you're looking for a scale appearance, my custom cfg's to rescale as well as increase the force and range of the magnets in a Squad Docking Port Jr. And as a bonus, the B9 Aerospace Shielded Docking Port if you have B9 installed. If you use RKE Kanadarm tubes or any other physics-less parts. Be sure you never attach a Quantum Strut directly to or from a physics-less part. It will lock the craft in place during flight, and cause all kinds of Kraken like behavior. Instead attach a physics enabled part to the RKE Tubes then the Quantum strut to that part. I also suggest building planes that require very little effort to stabilize. Meaning when in flight the input visualizer in the lower left hand corner of the screen should be as close to center for, pitch, roll and yaw as possible during flight. Also another good check, is a plane that will deviate very little on it's own with the SAS / RCS turned off in flight. I suggest enabling as few control surfaces and gimbaled engines on the Receiver craft as possible. This will aid in fine control while approaching the Tanker. The steps to reproduce this on your own are: (1) Load the Receiver and move it off the runway - I suggest Vessel Mover for this task. (2) Return to the Space Center / SPH and load the Tanker. (2-A) (Drogue Method) - Before take off, with both planes landed. Use a Kerbal to "Unplug" and then reattach a KAS Winch Line to the Drogue. In "Undocked" mode - If you're using lights on the Drogue, press (Alt+F12) to bring up the cheats menu and enable infinite electricity. (3) With both planes now loaded, take off with the Tanker - Use the " [ " and " ] " keys to switch between planes. I suggest using MechJeb "Spaceplane Guidance" to hold a set altitude and heading - Don't fly too fast or you can outrun the Receiver. (4) Switch back to the Receiver and launch it as well - Also use MechJeb spaceplane guidance but set the receiver altitude 10m lower than the Tanker. Be Careful to stay within loading distance I think that's something like 2.5 Kilometers. (5) Match speed, and fine tune course alignment of the Receiver with the Tanker using the keyboard / joystick inputs in tandem with MJ Spaceplane Guidance - This is where the work begins. (6) Deploy either the Probe and Drogue or the Boom at this time from the Tanker. (6-A) (Drogue) If you use my cfg's be careful how close together multiple drogues get. The magnets are ridiculous. (6-B) (Boom) I like to use one or two Quantum Struts to reinforce the boom back to the Tanker at this time. (7-A) (Drogue Method) Once docking has occured, the engines on the Receiver will automatically throttle down but MechJeb will continue flying the Receiver. - Return throttle on the Receiver to just under the level used to initially catch the drogue, You want a slight amount of tension on the KAS winch line. And allow MechJeb to stabilize the Receiver. Engines and Mechjeb's Control of the Tanker will be unchanged. As long as the drogue is attached in "undocked" mode to the winch line (7-B) (Boom Method) Once docking has occurred, you'll need to quickly enable the Quantum Struts. Before an "Unplanned Disassembly" occurs. I like to assign the Boom to Receiver Quantum Struts "Activate" command to the "Abort" Action group. Next, control will default to the Tanker and the engines of both planes will throttle down together automatically, MechJeb will begin flying both planes together as one craft automatically. You need to decrease the engine output of the Reciever and then throttle everything back up. You want the Receiver to have a little less power than the Tanker. You can do this by disabling individual engines through action groups, or through engine right click menus as demonstrated in my video bellow (just don't shut them down completely like I did - Puts a lot of stress on the boom). Then allow MechJeb to stabilize both planes. Fuel transfer is accomplished by holding (Alt) and (Right Clicking) the tanks you wish to move fuel between. Remember this only works with a "Docked" Receiver. When you undock the two planes MechJeb will resume control automatically, of the Receiver and Tanker Independently. With whatever settings you input prior to docking. When you're on final approach with either a Flying Boom or a Drogue Line. The best way to maintain good speed control is by flying too slow, and using afterburners for short boosts to accelerate toward the docking port. Then coasting on the normal engines to slow back down again. Or, set your speed too fast and then use airbrakes to slow down. Pulling the Receiver back away from the Docking Port. Either of these methods works, and it just comes down to preference. Another good method is a plane with a fair amount of drag with quick throttle response. So as you throttle down the Receiver will slow down quickly. Larger planes are actually a little easier to dock as they are slow to make changes with control input. Slow and sloppy is good, quick and jerky is bad. Just be sure your boom is built strong enough to hold everything. Videos Of Both Methods: My Custom .cfg's And Suggested Mod Links AC-130 Spectre, Refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker
  16. So I've got some EVA cluster missions far from KSC. I'm playing with an absolutely brutal set of difficulty settings, and I'm getting bored with flying tourists around to scrape together enough cash to finance science missions. I take the EVA and 'below' observation missions near KSC because they pay well for a 100% recoverable craft (aircraft) and they also give science while I'm at it (yay!) For near EVA missions I use a build I call the 'Science Jetcar.' It's a wingless aircraft with a pair of Junos and the basic landing gear, a low-science rover, basically. Great for scooting around @ 50m/sec. In addition to doing EVA missions on the opposite side of Kerbin, I'd like to get a 100% recoverable craft to some of the more distant biomes in KSP as well for science purposes. Before 1.0 I would follow Scott Manley's VTOL construction video and basically build out a Harrier jet. Is that build still viable? Are there any tips for building VTOLs with stock parts? Any designs people want to share? I haven't finished unlocking all the 45 science point nodes yet, so it's vitally important that we do this with basic parts.
  17. So, I'm building my first orbital tug for space station operations as I plan a rather robust local tourism infrastructure consisting of modular components so that passenger modules can be docked to vehicles appropriate to their itineraries. (This same infrastructure will include scientific and other payloads as well, but tourists seem to have enough variety in their needs that designing for that use-case will be a goodly ways towards what I need.) The problem is thus: I can't seem to make the clampotron Jr. lock to directly above the center of mass. Given that this tug will be attaching to things much larger than it, an offset CoM from my CoT will be problematic in an environment where high degrees of precision are called for. Am I missing something obvious? Other parts, like parachutes, snap just fine. I'm having similar issues with the command module's roof. Edit: If I turn the clamp-o-tron upside down (such that it generates the 'uselessness' error) it will snap just fine. Of course, then it's upside down and can't be used.
  18. I've been planning to set up a base on Laythe, and one of the things I intend to send there are plane-rover hybrids to explore the myriad of islands across the moon. However, upon designing such a plane and testing it on Kerbin, it displayed severe flight issues, such as: • Flipping out of control when taking off - airplane must taxi at ~70m/s and make a jump, then shove throttle to 100% to accelerate quickly. It will spin out and crash when doing a conventional takeoff. • Easily losing control when turning around on the atmosphere - When turning around, it'll wackingly spin around and then go back to its initial position. To steer, you must do so slowly and carefully. • Hard time landing - It's hard to properly orientate the plane because it will not budge when steering unless doing a full bank turn, and when trying to land, it will bounce right up and start spinning uncontrollably. I'd like to fix the problems I have with the plane, so if anyone could point out some bad design choices I did, it'd be welcome. I have taken five screenshots from the plane in order to help.
  19. Since I became more active in the forum over the last couple of years, I have learned a lot from other players, both older and more experienced and the newbie. One of the things that I have noticed is that each of us have a different way of constructing craft that's uniquely ours AND nicely fits the unique way we play. I thought that it might be interesting to see why others do what they do in their craft designs - with the idea that the next time one of us has "KSP burnout," then maybe this thread can be the source of a new interest or new way to play KSP. This led me to want to ask a simple question to those willing to share: What are some "quirks" about your craft? To clarify what I mean by this, please consider sharing the following: what are some things you do in designing your craft that seem to be present in each of your designs? Why do you feel it's important to include it? Please include an image or two for reference to what you are sharing. I want to keep the OP clean, so I will post one of my quirks on the next post.
  20. One thing I have noticed recently is that everyone seems to use standardized lifters and I do not. I use standardized payloads (like lil' science and mapping satellites) and build a booster for wherever I want to send them. So my questions: Do you use standardized lifters or do you build them custom for every mission? Why or why not? Is there any real reason for using standardized boosters? I understand that in Real Life standardization of rockets makes sense for economics and all, but in a game like KSP that does not model assembly or supply it really seems pointless.
  21. Good day fellow kerbalnauts! i have for you all, a challenge! please design the smallest SSTO-like-vehicle you can that conforms to the following requirements (modded or unmodded): it needs to house one(1) kerbal (perferably inline cockpit, but any cockpit or seat is fine) it needs a docking port in line with the center of mass, preferably in the back* the upper or space stage is allowed to not have airbreathing engines, as long as it can re-enter/glide down, this refers back to requirement 2, you are allowd to have a detachable plane-bit in the back, as long as it could theoretically fly or glide down. it needs to look sleek and cool!, bonus points for style! bonus points for the following: the docking port is mounted so the kerbal can actually get there via the cockpit - designing a space-addon that can attach to the back/front to take the ship further out!
  22. I wanted to see if fairings made a difference as there was some discussion on Facebook in regards to their importance (or not importance due to added weight) Here's the result of a short and simple scientific experiment:
  23. Initial gets-results version of a 'probe helper'. Right now it'll report the mass, cost, power needs, and energy needs of a probe with the selected components and properties. You can specify how patient you are for the batteries to recharge, if the probe's experiments will be transmitted one-by-one or in a big batch, and how long the probe should be able to function in a shadow (I'm looking at you, Ike). v0.1.4 charts! making noise about this again Planned improvements: tooltips path finding
  24. First, still learning at this, and I have been asking some questions around here, hope I am not getting annoying. So, I am trying to use MechJeb information to help build a better rocket ship, but am finding it opaque. Here are three pictures of a launch rocket with different types of stages. Tell me if my understanding of what I am reading is correct. Note that I am mostly interested in the lifting stage designs, and will be talking about "in the atmosphere" stages exclusively. Pictures behind spoilers because they are large. OK, here is a simple rocket. Weight: 80 tons, down to 48 tons when lift stage is empty. Sea Level Thrust starts at 1.75, which is good enough for leaving Kerbin. Atmosphere DV is 1423, which is less then half of what I need. If this stage were in a vacuum, the DV would have been 1548, which is only a bit better. So needing more DV, I add 3 side tanks, made to be ditched during the accent. This changes the numbers. Weight Question: Why does stage 7 have an ending mass of 106.8, but stage 6 has a start of 80.1? Do the three tanks/engines/crap weigh 26 tons, and it goes down when we decouple them? SLT: Our thrust at launch is down to 1.41, which is the low end of OK. DV: We added over 1800 DV, which is nice, but 1800 + 1400 is still not enough to go all the way up. Still needing more power to get out of the atmosphere, I add 6 med. sized SRB set to full thrust. Weight: We are up to a total of 252 tons. Weight Question: Why does ending mass of stage 8 say 175 tons and not 202 tons? Is it because we burned about 25 tons of fuel while the SRBs were also firing? SLT: We are up to 1.74 thrust from 1.41, a good number. SLT Question: SLT of Stage 7 now says 1.77 as opposed to 1.41, which it was before the SRBs. Is this because of the liquid fuel we burnt while Stage 8 was running? DV: We now have 860 in stage 8. When stage 7 starts, we now have 1201. I assume that its 1201 and not ~1800 because of fuel spent during stage 8. 860+1201= 2061, so adding the 6 SRB gave us about +200DV Overall, 2061 + 1423 = 3484, which is the bare minimum to get into orbit. Since I am not very good at this yet, I will need more. OK, that's it for pictures. Does anyone see something I am missing, or understanding incorrectly? Last question I asked , I received an answer that, after thinking about it, is confusing me more and more. The comment was: Specifically, I do not understand this: "...SRBs was going to do for you is increase thrust, which isn't going to help you. Now... if you had added fuel so the SRBs had something to lift, you would've noticed a dramatic increase in DV." I don't comprehend how you can increase thrust without increasing DV. If Dv is a measure of the total amount of acceleration your ship can output, how can increasing thrust not really increase DV? Thanks for time spent on this stuff, still trying to wrap my head around it.
  25. Hi guys, I am trying to build my first plane in Career mode with only Aviation unlocked (and all other 45 science items), but without luck - plane is not steering, so I cant take off. I am tried to use elevons, and setting inputs, but still it doesn't work. Could give me idea or simple design? Thx!