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Daedalus, Icarus and an ethical dilemma


Fuzzy Dunlop
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I\'ve been working on a spaceplane, the Icarus, on and off for the past 2 weeks. It\'s been quite a design challenge but yesterday I finally got it into orbit :D.

Incidently, the actual designation for this plane is the I-10E. There have been over 50 iterations of this design so far, several hundred Kerbals have died to get Jednard, Richfred and Rodald into space.

The launch didn\'t go perfectly and Icarus 1 ended up in a highly inclined 100 x 400 km orbit. Since I didn\'t know if I could repeat the launch and I wanted a target to rendezvous with I also launched Icarus 2. If Icarus 2 failed I could try to circularise the orbit of Icarus 1.

Icarus 2 launched into a perfect circular equatorial orbit. I decided to de-orbit Icarus 1, but too my horror I discovered that it was uncontrollable in the lower atmosphere. Billy-Bobson and his crew smashed backwards into the ground at over 100 m/s :(.

After mourning their loss I launched a simpler, earlier spaceplane - the Daedalus. Daedalus completed a rendezvous with Icarus 2 and the crews waved at each other through the windows. This heartwarming moment was record for posterity.

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=16426.0;attach=26997;image

Icarus is the big one to the top right

Then it hit me: the crew of Icarus 2 were doomed. If I re-entered the atmosphere their spaceship would surley tumble out of control like Icarus 1.

So what do I do? Do I de-orbit and send them to firey death? Or do I leave them to circle 100km above Kerbin for all eternity?

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They could live forever on your Mun base if they had the fuel to get there.

Maybe you can put them on a 69x69 slightly decaying orbit. Icarus 1 came straight in (I\'m guessing) and lost control due to their angle of attack. Perhaps a slightly decaying orbit, with the PE/AP being reduced a little bit each time due to air braking will allow them to get to a low altitude where they could ... jump out? ::)

Okay, I didn\'t think that through, but I tried! :P

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They could live forever on your Mun base if they had the fuel to get there.

Maybe you can put them on a 69x69 slightly decaying orbit. Icarus 1 came straight in (I\'m guessing) and lost control due to their angle of attack. Perhaps a slightly decaying orbit, with the PE/AP being reduced a little bit each time due to air braking will allow them to get to a low altitude where they could ... jump out? ::)

Okay, I didn\'t think that through, but I tried! :P

Pretend they have parachutes! Or better yet, MOOSE\'s!

I\'d deorbit it. You got it up in the first place, so it cant be that bad low down.

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The guys already crossed over to Daedalus, which is clearly large enough to have some passengers seats, from which they are attempting to save the taxpayers\' investment in Icarus-2 by using the backup remote control option to deorbit the ship. Their relayed bio-telemetry and crew portraits may cut to static if Icarus-2 crashes, but they\'ll be safe on Daedalus either way.

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Finally, being a social scientist matters in KSP.

Briefly, control is an illusion. You have no choice because 'Like the output of a programmed computer, only one choice is ever physically possible: the one you made,' Jerry Coyne.

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Aye, they won\'t exist next update... also, since you\'ve used cockpits, even if it would be able to be loaded, it wouldn\'t work since they\'re changing the cockpits to only have one or two seating capacity.

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Actually, this situation almost happened IRL. Soyuz 1 was meant to dock with the second craft, then 2 cosmonauts wold transfer to Soyuz 1 (the same mission profile Soyuz 4 and 5 flew). Both crafts had the same problem with chutes (Most likely caused by technological process violation during heatshield polymerization. And it never appeared on the previous flights just because of even more violations). So, if not that solar panel and attitude sensor fairures (BTW, both were rather simple mistakes - the panel was stuck in the heat insulation, but in the sensor there was just moisture condensed on the optics) it would very likely end with one craft crashed and the second obviosly doomed but still in orbit at that moment.

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