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[WIP][1.8.x] SSTULabs - Low Part Count Solutions (Orbiters, Landers, Lifters) - Dev Thread [11-18-18]


Shadowmage
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21 hours ago, Shadowmage said:

Possibly, in the far future.  I have saved the mesh, and you may see something -similar- in the BaseCore series of parts (though, of course, it will have a flat bottom, and be intended for use on bases, probably as a temporary expansion or emergency shelter of some sort).


In reality, the BEAM module is useless on the ISS.  They don't use it for... well.. anything, and the airlock is locked at (nearly) all times.  It is there merely for in-space validation and testing of the expandable module concept; to see how well it holds up in space.  At no point is the module scheduled for any real use; no habitation, no equipment, no activities, nothing.

TL:DR -- I would rather have useful and usable modules on my space station, not prototypes intended only for testing purposes...  (also see the many, many, posts I've made regarding my stance on replica stuff...)

 

 

I know, it's just for authenticity.

Guess the ST-HAB-A1 looks also ok-ish as BEAM: Cx49_unXEAAtHA3.jpg

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Seems like having a collider after they are deployed might be a simple addition. I'm not sure what you mean by a lot of colliders, I think the stock ones are either intact, or not. I've not honestly hit a solar panel in a while, the only issues I ever had were when building a base with KIS and I'd hit one (usually on Minmus).

From a station building standpoint, I'd say "be careful, and don't deploy large arrays until you are done with work that might bump them :) .

The hibernation setting is a huge improvement, BTW. You can set it to hibernate mode manually, or set it to hibernate on warp.

5 hours ago, RoverDude said:

It does quite a bit, actually.  The whole 'ships blowing up' bit was fixed ages ago, and we also have core heat to handle heavier systems like ISRU and drills.

In the context of SSTU right now, it's largely an issue of if there is any need for them on station parts by themselves. ISS, or Shuttle have radiators, for example, because keeping the inside at shirtsleeve temps in space is non-trivial, though it might be outside the scope (or capability) of KSP to deal with. We have the parts, though, so we can always add them "because." :) 

Edited by tater
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Re: solar panel colliders: it might be possible to do with just a box collider that scales along its axes during the deploy animation (well, really the transform scales).  There might be some edge cases like the T shaped panels though, though I think there you have few enough panels that a single box collider for each might be acceptable.  Definitely a fair bit of work to add colliders on all the panels and re-export them though.

E: Just saw your last post though - applying force to the craft while deploying might be a problem.  It might be possible to just break based on the sum of forces (or torque) on the part, but I'm not sure how reliable that would be.

Edited by blowfish
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Soon to return:

EXwuedt.png

Now with working wheels!  Non-sliding, non-jittering, stable and reliable.  Steering, check.  Brakes, check.  Suspension...check.  Spinning tires, yep they roll.  Burnouts, umm, yeah... but not on this beast :)

Have made -very- substantial progress on the wheel-collider front in the past couple days.  Enough that I don't feel bad about saying that the SC-E will be returning soon; I can't give exact timeframes, but its not far out (at least the wheels portion..).  After the wheels, there are a few other things on the SC-E that I need to clean up; MOI and gui cleanup mostly.  Probably should be able to include it for the next release along with the first round of general bugfixes/polish/balance updates.

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7 hours ago, Sudragon said:

That's wheely good news.

 

I see what you did there :P   

10 hours ago, Shadowmage said:

SC-E

She is looking better then ever. Is it still going to have the parachute staging in the tail?  

Thank you again for working on this, it is very much appreciated. 

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Yeah, it went away when the unity upgrade borked wheels.

On 4/12/2016 at 11:51 AM, Shadowmage said:

General Development Update:

Now...on to the 'more bad news'.... apparently U5 wheel colliders... suck.  I have other words for it...but they would quickly get me banned from the forum.

Apparently they now auto-orient themselves to the rigidbody they are attached to.  This might be all fine-and-good for some simple vehicle setups, but it absolutely breaks any sort of multi-leg landing leg setup, and also breaks the landing-gear integrated-into-wings (e.g. SC-E wings and fuselage) -- this is because KSP expects a certain orientation for the aero-parts (e.g. y+ = forward) while the U5 wheel colliders expect the standard Unity z+ = forward setup.  So I have to rotate the landing gear model to work with the wing... and as such the wheel-colliders are now rotated 90' off from what they should be (e.g. instead of pointing towards the ground they point towards the rear of the craft... and as such do not function).  This is a UNITY problem, and not a KSP problem;  absolutely nothing that I or SQUAD can do about it.

So... Series-E parts are likely going to be pulled from distribution for the time being until I can fix/rework them.  Thanks Unity... really love what you did there (....................................).  Who at Unity really thought that these new wheel colliders were acceptable?  (srsly... would like to know so that I can start spamming them with hate-mail)

This is partially for newcomers (why Shuttle/gear went away), and partially as a question:

Does your progress have any positive bearing on multi-leg setups or integrated gear, or is it just a fix on the borked wheels in general, but they still require separate parts? (your image looks like integrated wheels :) )

Edited by tater
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34 minutes ago, tater said:

Yeah, it went away when the unity upgrade borked wheels.

This is partially for newcomers (why Shuttle/gear went away), and partially as a question:

Does your progress have any positive bearing on multi-leg setups or integrated gear, or is it just a fix on the borked wheels in general, but they still require separate parts? (your image looks like integrated wheels :) )

Both, and all of the above.

This image shows multiple wheel colliders in a single part, some of them angled towards the front/rear.  One of the KF tracks I was using for debug/testing/validation.

op9hQtb.png

In essence I've brought back the ease of setup of the U4 wheel colliders (put them wherever, oriented however you want, and use as many as you want), and removed all of the silly limitations and hacky code from the U5 wheel colliders (no more forced rigidbody suspension alignment, no 'auto' spring/damper mangling, no strange jitters with jointed rigidbody setups).

In the shuttle image in the previous post, I just slapped on some surface-attached wheels for testing.  However the wheels are perfectly capable of being integrated back into the wings/fuselage parts, and will be done before I re-release that series of parts.

 

Will likely be opening up a new forum thread shortly for the KSPWheel mod; it will include the plugin, a set of PartModules aimed at stock-replacement (intended use of one wheel per part), and a set of patches to re-work the stock wheels/legs/gear to use the new colliders.  For the time being though, I'll be posting dev info here and/or over at the KF thread.  When ready SSTU will include the KSPWheel mod as a packaged dependency; though I may remove the stock-wheel patches from the version that gets packed with SSTU.

Currently I'm working on the feature set of the PartModules -- adding things like user-adjustable suspension parameters, doing what I can to mimic the config capabilities of the existing stock system.  After that I can look into enhancements; things the stock system cannot do, or doesn't handle very well.  Stuff like real traction control, steering curves, torque curves.  Won't be doing anything too crazy, but would like the system to be stable and usable by itself and at least give others a good starting point for further customization and enhancement.


I don't think I've ever spent as much time driving KSP vehicles as I have during the testing of these colliders.  I also never had as much fun with wheels under the old systems; mostly these colliders seem to 'just work', and give very pleasing results when setup properly for the vehicle.

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HAB-A1 issue. I transferred 1 crew to the inflatable, and had 2 issues. One, the contract did not satisfy (5 kerbals, where the rest of the station was a Soyuz). Two, there is no transfer crew option on the right click (Bob is in there, marked as crew in the save). 

no_transfer.png

Log threw this:

Quote

LOG 22:11:18.217] Setting crew capacity to: 4 current: 0
[WRN 22:11:30.608] InternalModel error: Part Crew capacity is 2, but 3 seats are defined in internal model
[WRN 22:11:30.613] InternalModel error: Part Crew capacity is 2, but 3 seats are defined in internal model
[WRN 22:11:30.613] [Part]: SSTU-ST-HAB-A1 holds crew but has no interior model defined!

 

That log entry happened when I tried a crew report (since there was no transfer option).

This is basically what @mechanicH had reported earlier---but there is no "Transfer Crew" option available in the right click, but Bob was marked as crew for the A1 (I checked the persistent file).

I tested all the HAB inflatables, they all do this. I realized that when this was reported before, I had no issues, but I was on 1.2, not 1.2.1... I tried restarting KSP, as well, no dice.

Edited by tater
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Noted; there may be some conflicts with the integrated docking ports and the stock crew-transfer mechanism.  Or perhaps just changes in the 1.2.1 code that I've not seen yet (apparently my dev environment is still using 1.2.0...).

Will do some investigation and hopefully get this cleaned up for the next release.  As long as the crew is still listed in the persistence file, then it is likely a problem of the stock 'ModuleCrewTransferDialog' not being inserted into the part properly / being overwritten by the docking port modules when they are inserted.

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Reading on NASASpaceflightforum about fanciful mars habitats got me thinking about BaseCore (next up on the list of SSTU stuff, after StationCore).

A few easy things are possible using parts that already exist in SSTU. A couple new adapters, for example. One with an airlock on the bottom of a HAB or COS part (imagine the cylinder standing like a beer can, with a hatch near the ground on the side). The other with a hatch top or bottom such that it works with the HAB or COS part resting on its side (see the image below, and note the airlock):

16461325416_8e89b0fbdf_b.jpg

 

Here is a diorama of inflatables on the Moon:

lunarbase.jpg

They are apparently adding radiation shielding to the right unit. You can see the airlocks as the additional units with the ladders, but it could just as well be an adapter in SSTU, same functionality, fewer parts. Note that the tubes over the right hab are tubular sandbags, to be filled with regolith...

IsaacHH-Bigelow-Aerospace-3493.jpg

OK, now look at the first image... Many concepts include a hab buried in regolith, and some include 3d printing as part of the technique. I wonder if you could have a BaseCore unit that looks like a COS part, but includes an "inflate" option that is really a "bury" option? Instead of "rocket parts" it uses a new, "regolith" resource ( name = Dirt is already in the community resources, so that is possible as well). When you get enough regolith, you can "cover" the unit, and the model animates to something that looks rather like the first image. The color could be a pull-down (like picking a tank texture), and could use the actual planet texture, possibly.

Alternately, we use the same regolith resource, but once you have enough, the hab gets covered with "sandbags" which would presumably be easier to deal with (they'l always be the same texture).

We'd need a new part for gathering the regolith resource. My suggestion would be very simple: a front loader scoop. Stick it on a rover, and add an SSTU "regolith" tank (configure tank). You need not do anything, the idea is that you have to land the thing.

LS mods that include radiation (kerbalism does, and I think I read that USILS is thinking about it) would then have the stats improved---usable without, better with the shielding.

 

 

 

 

Edited by tater
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On November 22, 2016 at 9:05 PM, Shadowmage said:

Soon to return:

EXwuedt.png

Now with working wheels!  Non-sliding, non-jittering, stable and reliable.  Steering, check.  Brakes, check.  Suspension...check.  Spinning tires, yep they roll.  Burnouts, umm, yeah... but not on this beast :)

Have made -very- substantial progress on the wheel-collider front in the past couple days.  Enough that I don't feel bad about saying that the SC-E will be returning soon; I can't give exact timeframes, but its not far out (at least the wheels portion..).  After the wheels, there are a few other things on the SC-E that I need to clean up; MOI and gui cleanup mostly.  Probably should be able to include it for the next release along with the first round of general bugfixes/polish/balance updates.

 Awesome to see these parts return but what is the time line

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On 11/24/2016 at 3:22 PM, Shadowmage said:

Noted; there may be some conflicts with the integrated docking ports and the stock crew-transfer mechanism.  Or perhaps just changes in the 1.2.1 code that I've not seen yet (apparently my dev environment is still using 1.2.0...).

On that subject and before I post a bug.  Is anyone having issues with the MFT tank nose adapters being upside down, IE the wide part is at the TOP?    I was just trying to do a 6.5-5m nosecone for my Saturn II's first stage.   I ended up having to conicalize the Petal adapter that is protecting my FASA M-1 engine.    The later nose mounts all seem to be reversed.   I am running a ton of mods so I wanted to ask before I hit the tracker with it and a bunch of useless data (assuming I am the only one.)

Oh and here is a picture of the completed craft (Using parts from FASA, SSTU, Space-Y and RLA extended, Personal CFGs for some of these parts).   I have landed on the Mun with the Orion capsule, and returned to Kerbin with a re-dock to the 2nd stage with it's M-1 engine.

Saturn II with Orion capsule as lander

Edited by Pappystein
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There are now adapters that go the other direction as well. Smaller to larger, as well as tapering to smaller (what you think of as a nose, usually. This allows smaller diameter boosters with something like Orion at the top.

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4 hours ago, tater said:

There are now adapters that go the other direction as well. Smaller to larger, as well as tapering to smaller (what you think of as a nose, usually. This allows smaller diameter boosters with something like Orion at the top.

Thanks Tater!,   I missed that in the Release notes I guess.

 

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Recently in Kerbal Shipping Program, Tangee Kerman took the new tractor trailer design out for a spin.

ceE3R5C.png


It was driving quite well, but Tangee tried to push the limits a bit and things got out of hand and she rolled the trailer...

K8cEEmx.png

 

Just playing with the new wheel system, seeing if I can break it with any odd craft designs.  Holding up very well so far.  The wheels behave like wheels; landing gear like landing gear; and landing-legs just like they should.  There are a few edge cases with the wheel physics that I need to tackle, but I've not once had it send me into orbit or throw me around unexpectedly.

The module set is becoming quite feature-rich, with perhaps a better feature set than the stock modules as far as ease of understanding and configurability goes.  They don't auto-calc anything for you, or try to hold your hand, but all of the options are there for the engineer to configure.  Have the basic modules capable of being used for tracks as well as standard wheels, so they should be compatible with as wide a range of models as possible. On the physics front I implemented a cleaner default torque curve today that gives the wheels an even more realistic and reliable response, and added some low-level anti-jitter code that cleaned up any jittering that I have seen on craft so far (without needing auto-struts). 

Working on cleaning up a few more of the module features (speed-based-steering-curve?) and I'll probably have a testing release of KSPWheels available in the next couple of days.  Will contain the plugin and a set of patches to create duplicates of the stock wheels (currently; may make it patch in-place the stock wheels).  It may contain patches for some of the KerbalFoundries models as well, though it will likely only be a small selection (some have special rigged models that would require additional modules and config to handle properly).

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