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Still not survivable. The shuttle, especially in the early days, had huge “black zones,” where any kind of failure requiring an abort would be LOCV, either due to reentry stress on the orbiter or lack of thrust/control. Remember, at launch the boosters gave 90% of the stack’s thrust, until the orbiter/ET combo could accelerate itself, even “shutting off” the boosters would be LOCV. The pilot/commander on those first few flights of Columbia pretty much knew if anything went wrong while the boosters were burning they were boned. Oddly enough, that part never changed with “operational” flights.
NOTICE: As of 2018-06-22, @linuxgurugamer has kindly agreed to take this mod over. Any applicable license to this mod is hereby transferred to him, exclusively. I'd assume he may/will start a new thread for this mod. I won't be supporting it any further. It's been fun and thanks for everybody's patience, assistance and kind words and encouragement. I will ask the mods to lock this thread. All future discussion should take place on the new thread. See the imgur album for screenshots. Thanks @Kottabos for doing a nice video review! The PEBKAC parts actually start around 2:30. Recompiled for compatibility with KSP 1.3.x I have not done any localization, nor do I plan to do so. If you want to create a localized copy, let me know and we will figure out how to make it happen. It seems to run OK with 1.4.1 but I have not examined any of the DLC yet. This add-on is a set of parts I created because I was a little dissatisfied by the stock Launch Escape System (LES). The PEBKAC Industries LES (PKI-LES) is designed to more or less simulate the Apollo and Mercury LES's used in real life. The LES for the 3-naut capsule features a totally non-functional Boost Protective Cover (BPC), launch escape motor, tower jettison motor and a small pitch control motor/nosecone and canard assembly. The canard assembly deploys roughly 8 seconds after the launch escape motor runs out of propellant and serves to help orient the escaping CM toward retrograde. It now includes a science experiment to simulate the "Q-ball", which contained atmospheric/aerodynamic sensors which were part of Apollo's "Emergency Detection System". The LES for the 1-naut capsule is modeled after the one from NASA's Mercury capsule. It didn't have any pitch motor or canards. The included plugin allows you to automatically conduct abort procedures. Just add the parts, hit the "ABORT" key and everything will take care of itself. Use staging to jettison the LES after a successful launch. Or you can add the jettison command to an action group if you prefer. I based all of the non-performance-related details (cost, tech-tree, etc) of the PKI-LES on the stock parts. Many of the other details were tweaked to be more realistic. One big difference is that the PKI-LES has a much total thrust than the stock part from Squad. The mass (and centers of mass) of the parts were extrapolated from the Apollo and Mercury LES and scaled to be proportional to a "stock" CM assembly. I tweaked the aerodynamic properties to be (IMHO anyway) closer to reality. The end result is a more or less realistic flight profile. From the launchpad, the included example craft should reach the ocean upon initiating an abort. Also included in this version is a LES for the 3-naut capsule which has no BPC. Aside from this visual change, the part should function identically to the other Mk2 LES. The plugin code to make is compatible with the LES for the SDHI Service Module System. It should be flexible enough to use with pretty much any other LES out there. If you find one you want to use and can't figure out how to use my plugin to automate it, drop me a PM. The download includes a sandbox save-game which has two example craft using stock parts showing how the PKI-LES is supposed to be assembled and configured. Finally, if you play career-mode, you should eventually get some flight-test contracts for the PKI-LES parts.
Hi! I had some minor thoughts about launch escape systems, epecially about some detailed differences in their 'modes', in respect to the 'RealismOverhaul' mod-suite, which I have came quite fond of (Thanks to the many awesome people involved!). They might not find really much use, but some use them... Someone said something like 'It's fun to consider fail situations and countering them with gadgets, even if it costs a lot in every aspect." I humbly agree So we currently can just hit the backspace key and stuff gets triggered, afaik. That usually fully suffices. But we all have our specialists, that really want to have Kerpollo-Style A-1 to X-99 abort modes, depending on the current situation, determined by a relative small set of available parameters/values, like velocity, altitude, AoA, Q, Isp, TWR, etc, pp... And depending on those, different sets of actors could be triggered. I thought one could make a small part, like any of the SmartParts surface-attachables, serving as the receiver for the abort command in the action group system. This part could contain a UI, where one could create several modes, each containing the value-ranges, freely selectible, including boolean operands or ranges/windows. Take a look at the nice InfernalRobotics UI, something in the general direction of that. And for the sake of recycling, this could tie into ActionGroupsExtended, where the abort-action-group-input would be just relinquished by the SmartPart to several different abort-output-action-groups, one for each mode. I'm not entirely sure how the whole system on the Apollo-conecans worked, if the mode was selected automatically, or if someone had to turn a dial or other instrument during the whole ascent process until LEO and ready for TLI. A manual version could be another addition, especially if wanting to integrate some sort of tech-progression (RP-0?) The manual mode could work by either simply making multiple extended action groups and manually selecting them, which would make this mod unecessary, of course. Or by triggering the abort-part, which then 'switches' the 1-0 action group keys to a different 'set' of extended action groups, if possible. (If not already and me just beeig ignorant^^) Would be like hitting backspace, then a number for the mode, and swoosh... or just sudden silence followed by high levels of activity on the navball I'm not requesting it, merely checking out, if there'd be any sort of interest at all, to have such a thing and enough people wanting it and modders considering to code it. If there is, consider it requeted ;P