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Redshift OTF

Has anyone got a spaceplane in orbit yet?

Question

Just wondering. It seems to me like the jet engines provide massive thrust as the plane gets faster and at lower altitudes than was needed in 0.9 but the heat kills the spaceplane at around 20km and if I try and fly at higher altitudes where the air is thinner and the heat drops off the engines just die. Perhaps I am using the intakes incorrectly? Are intakes occluded by other parts? I've tried the pre-coolers but they didn't seem to help.

I am obviously aware that the everything is very different in this update and welcome that but maybe the balance is wrong? I can't seem to get over 1000 m/s in a spaceplane now. Perhaps this update favours planes that are heavily dependant on rocket engines to reach orbital speeds which would be a shame.

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Im at work now, so I cant post any pics, but building a SSTO were the first thing i did yesterday. Well, the only thing TBH ... Came home from work rather late (8pm ish).

The builds are about the same, but the flying is slightly different then before.

Sort of looked kinda like a Skylon, just with the engines close to the body, and not on the wingtips.

From front to back I had:

The 2man aerodynamic cockpit

Long tank of LFO

Short tank of LF

Long tank of LFO

mk2 to 1m adapter

Nosecone just to look pretty

I then sidemounted a precooler, with a ram intake in front, and rapiers in the back (with symmetry obviously)

Some wings on the side, and some canards in the front, along with a tailfin. (I think the wings actually were the "big" og "huge tailfin" thingy)

It had plenti if fuel left when it were in a 80x80ish orbit. Could probably attach a cargobay and it could bring some sattelite, or something like that.

The return I had to do a few times, to get the hang of the deathzone, but retroburning roughly 90-100 degrees behind KSC did the trick. Aimed between "the island" and "the next continent", and I came in about at the mountains. A short jet-buring later, and i had landed.

The first couple if times i burned up, but keeping a roughly 20deg pitch up, along with the 4 aerobrakes i had attached did the trick. It seems it needs to sheed of enough velocity to be at about 8 or 900m/s at 20km altitude. Then everything seems fine.

Switching to fine controls when landing seemd to be a must, as the normal ones tended to overshoot what i intended.

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Got to orbit easily with the first craft I built (After just plain overheating it in low atmo) Lost some peices during reentry. But overall I thought it was still easy but more interesting then previously.

I did some testing that might be useful for some of you, seems like ram air intakes are no longer preferable since they are lost a bit to easy during reentry, shock cones seems to take a bit more heat or better still just pure engine nacelles are way more heat sturdy. (I haven't tested the inline intakes yet, they might be sturdy to)

Rapier is easy but limited if you want good ISP in orbit. Turbojets and Nerva is now even more handy with the ditching of oxidizer, sometimes (might be related to the preecolers the turbojets really push me hard) I have been using a totally different assent profile, no more high speed high altitude dash before shooting for orbit. I have had some very simple launches just building spaceplanes that are low drag and avoiding parts that burn of, and then just shooting out of the thick ~20 atmo at serious speed in 45% angle, just doing that can almost give you a 80 apoapsis and then you just circularize with the nervas.

Air-brakes seem too good... Is that really just pure drag calculation? (Might be, my only fat plane so far did not do nearly the same speed as my thin ones) or it might just be me focusing on building heat resistant planes that think they make it to easy :/

A well, when I get home today I'l try to build a Nerva spaceplane miner that can go to minmus in a single stage (I hope it has deposits) After that most stuff should be within reach. Or maybe I'l just polish my simple design to showcase how crazy easy it can be to launch an SSTO spaceplane now.

Edited by Cyk0

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First thing I did in 1.0? Tried my hand at building an SSTO with the new aero model. Managed to get a small unmanned cargo space plane into orbit in 15 minutes from conception, to construction and finally to flight.

Strangely, it's been much easier with the new aero. I could never make a reliable SSTO that worked with the old model.

Cheers, CP

New aero is much easier, at least for me. It works intuitively. The 3 day old pea-soup psuedo physics always screwed me up because the planes never worked the way I was intuitively expecting them to, especially on re-entry.

I've seen a number of complaints that the new aero and physics is "just broken". It isn't. The old aero and physics were broken, and people just got used to it. Now you actually have to use real designs and real maneuvers for space planes. No more just dropping into the atmosphere. You actually have to use techniques like S curving to slow down or you'll burn your ship up. You can't just go nose in, you actually need to angle up like the shuttle.

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After all, there's a reason they don't get used in real life!

Because the earth has four times the escape velocity of Kerbin? For reference, a round trip to Tylo has comparable delta-V to a moonlanding IRL. That's why SSTOs have always worked in KSP. Not because of the physics.

New aero is much easier, at least for me. It works intuitively. The 3 day old pea-soup psuedo physics always screwed me up because the planes never worked the way I was intuitively expecting them to, especially on re-entry.

I've seen a number of complaints that the new aero and physics is "just broken". It isn't. The old aero and physics were broken, and people just got used to it. Now you actually have to use real designs and real maneuvers for space planes. No more just dropping into the atmosphere. You actually have to use techniques like S curving to slow down or you'll burn your ship up. You can't just go nose in, you actually need to angle up like the shuttle.

Agreed. The new aerodynamics are incredible. I just glided a spaceplane onto the runway unpowered after missing my target. It's so much more intuitive and reliable.

Edited by Duban

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The new model definitely makes it much more difficult to get an SSTO into orbit, because of the heating effects (the new jets, especially rapier, are OP). I eventually managed to get into orbit by balancing on the line between speed and exploding due to compression heating, and I have to say I probably won't be using spaceplanes much anymore. This was my sixth or seventh attempt with this design (the others were ~500m/s short), and my fourth design attempt, the first to use rapiers.

I have the heating display enabled so I can exactly how far I can push it. It's still glowing right now from getting into orbit.

bk3uEOz.png

Periapse 74km, Apoapse 103km (I just burned until I was out of fuel)

0PByFPD.png

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AmpsterMan, what's your flight profile with that thing (i.e. how did you avoid exploding)? Also, is that really just two radial intakes under there?

I don't quite remember the specifics because this was done during experimentals. Yes those are only two radials on the bottom. Space planing has on some ways become easier; in others harder.

To space plane, reduce drag as much as possible. Do this by streamling your craft. The less surfaces facing the airflow, the better. Reduce control surfaces and wings as much as possible; these produce a lot of drag. Make sure your planedoesn't need to fly at too steep an angle of attack; this reduces drag due to "lifting backwards".

You need to be able to pass the sound barrier. Between Mach 0.8 to 1.2, drag skyrockets. Focus on beating the sound barrie first. Once you can beat it in a non spammy way (MOAR ENGINES) try to apply that lesson to spess planes.

Rapiers are indeed the best engines for very high altitude flight now.

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I got it. Not very efficient but it makes it

j6KVxxIUVZmBP.png

I made a thread to try and get a conversation about the new aerodynamics and described the process that got me to this plane but the thread didn't work.This community grew a lot over the years and, in the process, lost a lot of quality.

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I just built a plane that gets into a 75x70km orbit... but has next to no fuel once there.

Main fuselage was shock cone, linear cockpit, medium 1.25m fuel tank, engine cooler, turbo jet. Placed on the sides were a stack of six .6m black fuel tanks each, which both had 2 radial small orange rockets (4 rocket engines). Fuel tubes went from main body to side tanks. Wings were type A rectagular and triangular, make a trapezoid. Small delta wing used as vertical stabilizer. One control surface on each wing/stabilizer. May provide screenshot later.

I feel the jets need more oomph or something. I can just barely above 1000 m/s @ ~23000km, then the engine starts to falloff in power, and I slow down and fall. This falloff costs me tens in m/s before the engine cuts off and I can switch to rocket. And then I need to punch through at least 20000 more km via rocket and still double my speed. I could, of course, just be somehow wrong.

I feel that in order to compensate for the way jets act now, my accent looks more suitable for vertical rockets. I just can't spend much time riding on the jets.

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Guys... Remember you could do this in the old aero with just Turbo jet engines

W3DqT4o.jpg

vKquWIt.jpg

hTaRFhi.jpg

I have been trying to get an SSTO to work without rapiers and its a no go so far.

Air hogging does not seem to help anymore.

I kinda feel like the devs did not test SSTO's in the new aero. i will have to actually load up one of the stock SSTO's and see if it gets to orbit lol.

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Nope, spaceplanes are impossible now. Give up! Abandon all hope all ye who enter here!

If someone does get a SSTO working, (Spaceplane), I would be very surprised. I think Das wasn't able to.

It's doable. Still working on the "getting down" part of it, but mine can "get up". :blush:

Climb hard to 5k, coast to 10k on the engines, then burn the LFOs at 45. Total ascent time is around 7min.

E739837E9E4195F211D5BCC9472633380C8E4AB9

A20C19B2A8E4A70C76531548DA0F9656958BB202

6F3B9684F841040DF7B26D4F0F16DF18902B375E

Edited by spyker92

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For getting down, I 'cheated' a bit. I started my atmo entry ~90 degrees around Kerbin, and from there I shoved my plane nose down to ~45 degrees during the re-entry from 70k to 45k or so, using my entire wingspan as a giant airbrake. This bled off tons of speed while I got down into the thicker atmo. At ~40k I leveled off and popped two airbrakes. More than enough to get me under 800m/s. After that, I simply glided into KSC.

You need to dump all that speed up high. If you get under 30k over 1200 m/s you're in for a rough ride.

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I have been trying to get an SSTO to work without rapiers and its a no go so far.

Air hogging does not seem to help anymore.

I kinda feel like the devs did not test SSTO's in the new aero. i will have to actually load up one of the stock SSTO's and see if it gets to orbit lol.

No rapiers should not be any hindrance this was my first attempt at a spaceplane and it was very far from optimized...

8AF0D6925541C33280C28F3245BA10A31076586C

Returning the the space center from an orbit of somewhere around a 100 with plenty of liquid fuel left to fly around with the efficient Nervas if need be.

The trick is just to build a plane that is low drag and avoid parts that burn up (Canards, regular air intakes, some of the cockpits, use heatsinking if needed) and putting vulnerable stuff in cargobays. Accent is more simple than ever, just point skyward at something like 45 degrees from the runway and ram the throttle home (I have not really tested the most fuel efficient way to do it) and shoot out of the thick atmo below 20km at over 1200 m/s and getting an orbit should be a breeze.

It makes reentry very simple to, you will actually be going hotter on the way up than down, turbojets give stupid amounts of thrust in high speed down low, they peak out at over 500 thrust. I had air breaks to give it a changed aerodynamic profile for reentry but it was not needed.

Edited by Cyk0

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Guest

So ... we trying to survive a reentry in aluminum skin plane? I was looking at pictures above, and cannot see any thermal tiles :D

I think SQUAD should add a heat tiles, black and white. And players are expected to protect their shuttles by manually attaching them in pattern, that gives sufficient heat and dynamic pressure protection, while keeping weight to minimum. Yes, manually, all the 31000 of them :D

I did not updated to 1.0 yet, and I wonder: how really spaceplanes are being protected from heat in 1.0? There is special wings, do wing's upper and lower surface different, is there a tweakable slider to configure wing strength and amount of thermal protection? What about fuselages? I understand some parts were not updated, and they exploding at slightest heating?

P.S.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Shuttle_thermal_protection_system

Edited by Guest

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I did not updated to 1.0 yet, and I wonder: how really spaceplanes are being protected from heat in 1.0? There is special wings, do wing's upper and lower surface different, is there a tweakable slider to configure wing strength and amount of thermal protection? What about fuselages? I understand some parts were not updated, and they exploding at slightest heating?
No special tiles or anything, but some wings do survive heat better than others

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aBk15ON.jpg?1

This design was able to work fine. Able to get into 80x70 km orbit with plenty enough fuel to return. It was able to re-enter without any permanent damage, but lack of power generation led to a crash landing. Pilot was able to walk away though.

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So it seems my best ascent profile so far is to take off, pitch to 30 degrees at full throttle and keep going till the rapiers die and switch modes. Kind of takes the art out of it. :P Also I placed a heat shield behind the front pointy nose cone and it kept everything behind it nice and cool enabling me to get higher speeds.

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I got something into orbit. A bit of tweaking and it should be able to carry a light payload (fittable in mk2 parts) to orbit. The only issue I found was that I should get my joystick out of its hiding place. Jesus christ, the controls have become incredibly twitchy.

So it seems my best ascent profile so far is to take off, pitch to 30 degrees at full throttle and keep going till the rapiers die and switch modes. Kind of takes the art out of it. :P Also I placed a heat shield behind the front pointy nose cone and it kept everything behind it nice and cool enabling me to get higher speeds.

What speeds do you get to on rapiers? My ascent profile is a bit different (get to Mach 1 ish ASAP, ascend to 14/15 kilometres, start increasing speed from there while maintaining a good enough climb rate that you don't explode). It's not perfect yet, but I get to slightly over 1 km/s on rapiers that way.

Edited by Rodyle

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...I don't know if it can come down. Plenty of dv to deorbit, but not sure if it'll survive the heatwave...

Also the cargo bay contains fuel and parachutes :P

1Qc7nkJ.jpg

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...I don't know if it can come down. Plenty of dv to deorbit, but not sure if it'll survive the heatwave...

Also the cargo bay contains fuel and parachutes :P

http://i.imgur.com/1Qc7nkJ.jpg

Lower periapsis to roughly 45K, point your nose up as far as possible and deploy air brakes. That worked for me.

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I might have been a bit more aggressive on the descent - but it survived. Airbrakes seem a bit OP, I got less heat coming down than going up... but since they're also utterly necessary, I'm not gonna moan :P

Not where I wanted to come down, obviously, but given that it's the first SSTO I've made in 1.0 that survived the round trip, I'll take it as a victory!

CwSNAQn.jpg

Now I just need to clear out that fuel can from the cargo bay so's it can be useful...

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I managed to get a single seat RAPIER craft into orbit. Coming down was the easy bit. You need to kill as much speed as possible while still above about 40K. To do this, set up an entry angle that intersects the surface, and as you come in pitch up to about 20º. This will trade speed for altitude. Keep your nose up and you should be able to drop to 1.5km/s or so while still above 40K. Descend slowly, nose-up, washing off speed as you go, and if you do it right you will never even see reentry flames.

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