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KevinTMC

Mk16 Parachute Slow To Fully Deploy

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I've seen a couple of mentions of this in general discussion, but don't see a thread for it yet.

In all versions of KSP up to and including 1.0, the Mk16 Parachute sitting on top of the Mk1 Command Pod (with no other parts) has ensured gentle touchdown in most any circumstance on default settings.

This is no longer the case with 1.0.2. The chute is slow to fully deploy, or at least slow to reach its fully-deployed effectiveness. In my game (stock 1.0.2 for Windows downloaded from the website, no mods) this just killed Valentina when she slammed into the ground hard on what was an entirely routine and gentle re-entry up until the final 500 meters.

Perhaps this is a natural and even intended consequences of the tweaks that were made to chutes in 1.0.1/1.0.2. If so, then at the very least the default altitude for full deployment of the Mk16 Parachute needs to be set higher, perhaps somewhere from 750-1000m.

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I believe this is the intended behavior for 1.0.2 - and the most realistic one, in my opinion. Even though i never had any issues with pods slamming into the ground during proper re-entries, i understand your point.

Note that you can change the deployment altitude in the VAB/SPH by right clicking on the chute, or by setting the "deployAltitude" value in the part .cfg file to whatever you deem to be necessary.

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Yeah, you can change it, but OP's point still stands. If 500m is not enough for them to be effective, the default should be more than 500m.

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You can tweak them, but also realize that everyones preference of a good altitude is different (in terms of a good default).

Although point taken. The current default should be giving a safe deployment over the water or at KSC. Any higher landing locations probably require a higher deployment altitude, and generally craft don't come back to KSC. I have a plugin in my signature that unlocks deployment speeds too, if that's something you are interested in. Although I'm in the process of updating for the changes in 1.0.2.

Cheers,

-Claw

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I think the parachute altitude is AGL, not ASL, so the location won't matter too much. Yeah the atmosphere will be thinner so a little extra might be good, but 750-1000 seems safe pretty much everywhere.

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You are 100% correct. Deployment altitude is AGL, but the thinner atmosphere will take it a bit longer to slow down.

Cheers,

-Claw

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So i've done a bit of testing from a sandbox, and the default settings of the mk16 seems to be enough to come to a stop, at least on near sea level terrain:

From a mun altitude, i've done re-entry tests with the following craft (chute has default settings, .04 atmo and 500m):

gsD7w7j.jpg

As long as the Pe is above the surface, craft is slow enough by 5000 m above sea level that you can open the chute (around 220 m/s). Far from enough heating to display any bar, except the goo/solar panel ones, but they survive. The chute deploys completely at 500 and by 160 you've reach final descent velocity (around 6m/s)

ncepVNn.jpg

For a side entry to the planet

Flames until 3 to 4000 meters, but you can safely open the chute as soon as the flames are out you're fine. From there it's similar to above and you have reached 6m/s by 140 m.

YezpZ7r.jpg

For a zero orbital velocity dive

Flames until 3000m but otherwise similar. Again, 6 m/s by 140 m/s

For zero orbital velocity followed by a full power dive (3300 upon hitting the atmo):

Flames until quite late, but you eventually reach 240 m/s on drag alone. From there you can open your chute. Despite staging between 1000 and 2000 above sea level, the final descent velocity wasn't reached until 110m, despite the full deployment happening at 500. But that's a crazy re-entry profile! (and i'm sure some might call that soupy to stop on drag alone. I don't think this would have happened in 1.0.0)

So i'm a bit lost regarding what happened to my chutes earlier today in career, because I definitily crashed a couple of time at 30 m/s in the ocean.... :mad: But until I can reproduce it, I've got nothing to show.

Edited by Captain H@dock

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Well, for chute problems (with all the adjusting going on) if you run into strange drag problems... the best bet is to delete the PartDatabase.cfg file (in the root KSP folder) and restart the game. That will force it to rebuild and reload all the drag cubes.

Cheers,

~Claw

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Thanks for running the tests, Captain H@dock. I'll see if I can replicate the prior result this evening myself.

Thanks for the suggestion, Claw...I've given that a try and will see if there's any difference.

Is the PartDatabase.cfg file new to version 1.0.x? Seems to me like it is.

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