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This thread is established for the discussion of Virgin Galactic http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-35002459 i don't think this is new, but i guess its now formal that they are going to use 747 for a launch platform. My critique here is that in that class the 777 is a better choice, given that it has a slightly higher flight ceiling and is less cistly to get to that altitude and back. If one is looking for altitude why not find an old concorde, if they still exist
So, I have a predicament. I have been playing KSP which I have owned for a while and although I only got about 20 hours under my belt since the Early Access days (don't really have time to play games) I have gotten back into it. Well, I inadvertently launched a test orbital ship into space with enough power to break Kerbin orbit and enter into what appears to be a stable elongated orbit of the sun (read it all as it goes down here: Anyways, as I plan my rescue and refine my space program abilities (we only just achieved Kerbin orbital capabilities last night!) I realized that to attempt a mission of such magnitude presents a few hiccups. So, I will break my multi-part question down into smaller ones: Launching from KSC My first thought was SSTO but not only can the KSC construction building (fully upgraded) not handle rockets that I'm building (they get to be too tall for the building) but the SSTO component creates so much drag that even with the SpaceY Heavy Lifters SRB all firing at launch, it still takes the Liquid Rockets to reach a high enough altitude and burns through most of the fuel supply meaning no turns to establish orbit. I've seen a lot of craft on here and I'm sitting here asking myself, what am I doing wrong (the thread I linked off to contains the booster segment in my second post). It feels like drag as smaller launches for satellites on a new platform are working well as my space program techniques are refined (I get the Mach effect and have to use SAS to stabilize or else be flipping back to the ground in the SSTO booster so I feel I designed the vessel wrong) Orbit of Kerbin Can I dock a spacecraft at an orbital station for refueling (I do have a number of mods from KIS to KAS and than some - not reflected in the post I linked off to as I didn't have them then)? Can I dock multiple components to create a larger spacecraft in orbit of Kerbin? Planetary Assist Maneuvers My space program, as I stated, is obviously at a very early era with it just beginning to create craft capable of orbiting Kerbin. However, I successfully launched an automated craft that reached 11,000+m/sec and was plotted on Kerbin's escape before it was destroyed. What I am trying to figure out (and I have been reading) is how do I make the cross over maneuver to intercept a planet's orbit? (I think I have started to figure out how to do the orbital assists but getting to the planet is a bit harder). I see the alignment come up on my map when I set the target with the time, degrees, and delta-v needed I think. I am just not sure if that's what I am supposed to follow. Intercepting the target Spacecraft When I select a planet as a target, KSP can give me what I believe is the appropriate information if what I said above is true. Now I'm just trying to figure out how to intercept a spacecraft moving 3,000 m/sec and move my Kerbalnauts from the first craft to the rescue craft. Can I just EVA them at a close enough range? Returning to Kerbin KSC has no beacon. No ILS marker. Nothing. How exactly am I supposed to return to KSC in a spacecraft. So far my spacecraft have been pods so it didn't matter where on the planet they landed but I'm constructing a spaceplane for the final descent so landing at KSC which has a runway would be helpful. Knowing this would allow me to calculate a de-orbit trajectory. Reverse Thrusters - we're talking about a multi-stage interplanetary mission. We'll obviously need to slow the spacecraft down before reaching Kerbin descent. Is it even possible to mount reverse thrusters such as SRBs? Miscellaneous I think I am doing something wrong with the radial decouplers. When I try to decouple the SRBs from first stage they don't actually decouple and stay attached. You can see and hear the decouple effects. This is with the stock radial decouplers. Interestingly, in the many, many times my rockets have exploded, you can see in the report that the radial decouplers are colliding with the SRBs but the SRBs aren't exploding (these catastrophic failures where my rockets blew up were on reentry to Kerbin). Yes, so a number of questions but a very complicated and challenging mission coming up which I hope to learn a lot with.
This day in history. 1921 - Goddard begins liquid rocket experiments. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Goddard. Robert H. Goddard experimented with liquid oxygen and various liquid hydrocarbons, including gasoline and liquid propane as well as ether, as rocket fuel, under a grant by Clark University. He concluded that although oxygen and hydrogen possessed the greatest heat energy per unit mass, that liquid oxygen and liquid methane offered greatest heat value of combinations which could be used without considerable difficulty. But, he said, "the most practical combination appears to be liquid oxygen. 1937 - Jet Propulsion Laboratory forerunner established. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Tsien. Theodore von Kármán, Director of the Guggenheim Aeronautical Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology at Pasadena, founded group which began experiments in design fundamentals of high-altitude sounding rocket. The group, named the Cal Tech Rocket Research Project, consisted of Frank J. Malina, Tsien Hsue-sen, A. M. O. Smith, John W. Parsons, Edward Forman, and Weld Arnold. This was the origin of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. 1955 - NERVA project begins. - . Nation: USA. Program: NERVA. NACA Lewis Laboratory presented ARDC with results of air-breathing nuclear propulsion systems for manned applications, leading to AEC-AF Pluto project, and also initiated comparison of nuclear rocket with chemical systems for ICBM, a concept of use to Rover program.