zolotiyeruki

Kerbin Circumnavigation 1.2 - Aviator Challenge Continuation

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With the previous challenge admin's blessing, I give you....

The Kerbin Circumnavigation Challenge 1.2

circumnavigator+large.png

With the release of 1.2, the aerodynamics and heat models have been significantly revised.  Once again, it's possible to fly high and fast without disappearing in a puff of smoke!  Because of those same changes, we're starting things off fresh with a brand new leaderboard.  Most of the rules are the same as before.

The Challenge - Circumnavigate Kerbin in a continuously moving aircraft.

The Rules -

  • Stock parts only [Mechjebs AR202 is ok]
  • Your craft must carry a kerbal in a cockpit or capsule. Command seats don't count. (Rule change thanks to Foxster)
  • No mods that change physics/aero/thermal are allowed.
  • Autopilot mods (like Pilot Assistant) are allowed.  If you're going to beat the 12x around that I did in the last version, you'll need it.  But no auto-landing stuff.
  • Mods that allow giant bananas into the game are not allowed, but would be funny.
  • Informational mods are allowed [Mods that give you Delta-V, TWR, mass, ect.]
  • Only engines the use Intake Air as a propellant may be used.
  • If your craft has 1 or more R.A.P.I.E.R engines, as well as a tank with Oxidizer capacity, you must show your resource panel before takeoff to confirm you are not bringing any Oxidizer.
  • No physics exploits [infiniglide for example]
  • Debug menu settings that change the physics of the game will be at default. Only informational debug settings are allowed.
  • 30 Km is the ceiling. Any higher than that, and you restart. Don't worry, a 29,999 is still safe.
  • A runway takeoff is required (You may use VTOL's and STOL's.)
  • You must land back at KSC (runway landing is not required, but you must land within 1.1 Kilometers of it).
  • You must show at least one clear screenshot of your aircraft. (Preferably upon takeoff. Phoenix screenshots do not bear fruit.)
  • When your Circumnavigation is finished, show an F3 screenshot for the details of your flight.
  • No pizza allowed.
  • Do not offset parts to be separate from the craft [They must visually connect]
  • Your aircraft must stay perfectly intact the whole flight [No drop tanks, burn-offs, or otherwise lost parts]
  • Manned flights only.
  • In your submission, please list your flight time, and the number of circumnavigations. The visual post should be able to verify this.
  • You may only do an equatorial or polar Circumnavigation only. None of that 89 degree stuff [Just kidding, but don't deviate too far]
  • One clear screenshot per Circumnavigation of your aircraft on the opposite side of the planet is required.
  • No mounting any parts on the back of an engine.
  • No part clipping more than a minimum for to get things to work.
  • Anything that ruins the spirit of the challenge is also not allowed.
  • Smokey Yunick rule(*): If you find a creative way around the rules, kudos!  I'll allow it once, but since other players won't get to use the same loophole, you'll get an asterisk on the leaderboard

 

Scoring

There are three divisions.  You can enter all three.  You can use a single run to qualify for more than one division.  Or, you can complete the three divisions using different craft each time. But you only get listed once per division.

Simple Division

circumnavigator+resized.png

The challenge is simple:  Get all the way around.  Do that, and you'll be listed here.  No score, this is pass/fail only.

Haruspex 1:43:25
Ozelui 1:49:39
Klond 2:06:35
Yatsykon 2:19:25
Skystorm 3:49:37
Torquimedes 3:52:43
Nic333 3:55:56
Haruspex 4:14:53
SapperChop 5:00:49

6.

Velocity Division

circumnavigator+resized+velocity.png

Take off from KSC, go all the way around, and land back on the KSC runway in as little time as possible.  Shortest time wins.

1. 37:50 (!) Tidus Klein
2. 37:56 HelmutK

3. 38:10 Foxster
4. 38:35 Eidahlil
5. 38:51 Jarin

6. 39:05 Rosvall
7.  40:09 NightshineRecorralis
8.  48:36 [ Jeremy ]

Voyager Division

circumnavigator+resized+expedition.png

Circle the globe as many times as you can without landing or refueling.  Score = # of circles.

14x - zolotiyeruki
9x - EpicSpaceTroll139
4x - daniel911t

3x RuBisCO

To satisfy the usual Challenge rules, here's an entry to show that it's possible: http://imgur.com/a/mp2OG  2:06

Edited by zolotiyeruki

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Cool! I can earn my wings....again! :)

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This prop plane sadly breaks the rule of part offsetting, but would take you around Kerbin in 5 hours and how many times as you like.

LhFj61b.jpg

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I've run into a slight snag with the Velocity Circumnavigation.

I did this in 1.05 and was able to build a plane that could circumnavigate Kerbin at 1723 m/s @ 21000 m ASL and not overheat, with stock parts. (38 1/2 minutes flight time).

Unfortunately with the new physics and atmosphere none of the stock cockpits are able to withstand that stress for any longer than 9 to 11 minutes.

I have a feeling that the Velocity Division times will be considerably longer than before, and not much different than the simple Circumnavigation times here in this challenge.

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Completely unrelated to the above statement, I'd like to submit my entry for consideration in the velocity circumnavigation category.

Complete stop on the runway was reached 39:25 after starting the mission timer, with an 8 rapier craft called Flir B.

I'm fairly sure that time could be improved with better ascent and landing, but probably not by me. Here's the craft file if someone other than me wants to try, though.

Used MechJeb and PilotAssistant for assistance with flying.

 

4 hours ago, GDJ said:

Unfortunately with the new physics and atmosphere none of the stock cockpits are able to withstand that stress for any longer than 9 to 11 minutes.

The Mk2 inline cockpit and its internal heat tolerance of up to 1400K holds up just fine for me. But yeah, Mk1 planes probably won't be able to compete.

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3 hours ago, Eidahlil said:

Complete stop on the runway was reached 39:25 after starting the mission timer, with an 8 rapier craft called Flir B.

Excellent time! Looks like I have my work cut out for me.

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Lol, I remember following this challenge last time around.  Competition was fierce and many of the fastest times in the speed category were within what seemed like 1% of one another. It seems like the primary dictating factor here is part heat limits.  I wonder, are there any legit non-spirit breaking methods for dealing with heat?  Does the use of radiators make any difference at helping out with hot parts like the nose, wings, or nacelles?  I'm not sure of the specific game mechanics where radiators are concerned.

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49 minutes ago, MunGazer said:

Lol, I remember following this challenge last time around.  Competition was fierce and many of the fastest times in the speed category were within what seemed like 1% of one another. It seems like the primary dictating factor here is part heat limits.  I wonder, are there any legit non-spirit breaking methods for dealing with heat?  Does the use of radiators make any difference at helping out with hot parts like the nose, wings, or nacelles?  I'm not sure of the specific game mechanics where radiators are concerned.

I don't find they help much, to be honest. Last time round, the radiators didn't seem to help with heating much while also creating drag, so I just ditched them for my entry (which clocked in at about 51 minutes).

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Probably the best way to handle the heat is either A) a shielded docking port, or B) a heatshield.  The antenna trick doesn't seem to work as well any more, since you can't deploy it under conditions when it might snap off.  Although, I wonder if you could place it, then offset it so that it protrudes beyond your nose cone.

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10 hours ago, zolotiyeruki said:

Probably the best way to handle the heat is either A) a shielded docking port, or B) a heatshield.  The antenna trick doesn't seem to work as well any more, since you can't deploy it under conditions when it might snap off.  Although, I wonder if you could place it, then offset it so that it protrudes beyond your nose cone.

Hmmm... interesting... and I just had a thought.  What if one could design an aircraft that would fly normally at first using wings for lift, and then after take off while settled into a suitable pitch angle, suddenly retract its wings such that the overall profile was similar to that of an ICBM, fire up a powerful engine cluster and turn itself into a sort of a projectile?  The idea would be that the only part taking the brunt of the heat would be the nose cone while the wings would be safely tucked away, and the thrust to drag ratio and velocity would be so high that you would basically rapidly accelerate the craft into a nice long trajectory, making it as drawn out as possible without exceeding 30km altitude.  Might be easier to do in FAR with thinner air because obviously the fuel consumption fighting all that lower atmosphere drag would be insane.  Then, once the apex is reached close to 30 km altitude, the craft would shift into a supercruise mode - extending wings to a special configuration different than that of takeoff.  Once near return to KSC, the craft would then retract wings back into projectile mode, and using atmospheric trajectory prediction could basically plummet through the atmosphere with a high ballistic coefficient and heat tolerance until it slowed enough to deploy a landing configuration.  Would the mods to execute such a craft be illegal for the challenge, such as trajectories and some kind of robotics to manipulate the wings?  I'll have to read the rules again

Edit:  Ah yeah, stock parts only.  Oh well I just thought it'd be a cool concept.  Might be cool in theory and very hard in practice anyway.

Edited by MunGazer

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I modified my plane, and managed to get a slightly better result of 38:35.

The rapiers cut out at about 1751 m/s at that altitude (21km), and to get even 5 more m/s I think I'd need to go at least 3 km lower. And at 18 km I cannot even reach 1751 m/s with this particular plane, because the drag is higher. Parts start exploding after a couple of minutes too. So the only improvement I can think of is putting some airbrakes onto the thing, to land faster. Some other time.

 

5 hours ago, MunGazer said:

What if one could design an aircraft that would fly normally at first using wings for lift, and then after take off while settled into a suitable pitch angle, suddenly retract its wings such that the overall profile was similar to that of an ICBM, fire up a powerful engine cluster and turn itself into a sort of a projectile?

You can actually achieve a somewhat similar effect mechanically, though not cosmetically. The sensible way is to make your wings out of control surfaces, and then "deploy" them. When deployed, the effective angle of attack increases, dramatically increasing lift (and drag). When not deployed, they generate very little lift and drag. Just make sure they are close to your CoM, or the shifting CoL will flip your craft over. The not sensible way is to cram a bunch of wings into a cargo bay, and open the cargo bay when you want those wings active. That open cargo bay will generate quite a bit of drag though, but since you are moving slowly for takeoff and landing, it's not a big problem. I've actually built both types of craft before, and it does work, but the drag savings are low enough that it's usually not very worthwhile.

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Finally did it! I wasn't ever good at spaceplanes and I haven't played for half a year, but I did it in the end!

I did a single circumnavigation.

Time: 3:55:56, excluding time spent warping through the night

Total time: 7:03:56, including time spent landed.

Basically, I landed to warp through the night, which gave me extra landing, proving my plane is controllable, yet taking some time and slowing me down.
I believe I would have time around 3:45:00 without landing.

[imgur]http://imgur.com/a/2bI2A[/imgur]

Edit: no idea how to post embed albums. Album link.

Edited by Nik333

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Can I use a sled to takeoff? I'm planning on a water landing so I won't need the extra mass from the landing gear. Is the challenge even open now?

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My B52H is capable of a circumnavigation with 1 refueling stop. I took like 70 pictures. pole-to-pole, did it in 2 days, maxed speed at like 900 m/s (it's insane) and capped at like 26 km.

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@RuBisCO - nicely done!  I've added you to the leaderboard

@Fireheart318 - taking off using a sled would violate the "stay perfectly intact" rule, so I'm afraid it's not allowed.  Yes, the challenge is still open!  I just need to get around to flying my plane that I think will beat my previous best of 12 circumnavigations.

@TheKorbinger - You'll need to make it all the way around without stopping for fuel.

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I'm guessing rule #3 would disallow me from using (whenever I get it working) a KOS code to automatically fly a tanker up to me, transfer fuel, and go back to the KSC?

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Gatecrashing with my unmanned run (as in, I did it, and only then noticed the "must be manned" clause. Facepalm.) - http://imgur.com/a/8vCYu

No recording software but I took a lot of pictures (except the only one that matters, the flight results. Double Facepalm.) Not sure if it made a big difference or not but I flew it retrograde for the hell of it. Going to have to dig around for the original manned craft in my files and try this proper if I get the time again.

Edited by Invisifly2

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Must be manned, huh? I'll have to see if I can make a mk2 variant on my X-15 test craft. No work the rest of this week so I'll try then.

 

On a related note, is there any "top aircraft speed" challenge running? Looking at starting one going for highest speed in level airbreathing flight if not. - Found it

On 1/16/2017 at 5:54 PM, EpicSpaceTroll139 said:

I'm guessing rule #3 would disallow me from using (whenever I get it working) a KOS code to automatically fly a tanker up to me, transfer fuel, and go back to the KSC?

Rule #17, too, since this would fall under the same category as a drop tank for extra fuel cheats. Would *love* to see this done as a gatecrasher though. 

Edited by Jarin

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On 10/27/2016 at 6:54 PM, zolotiyeruki said:

A runway takeoff is required (You may use VTOL's and STOL's.)
...
You must land back at KSC (runway landing is not required, but you must land within 1.1 Kilometers of it).

These two combined mean landing gear is required, yes? No launching a tail-sitter on the runway and landing with parachutes?

Edit: Blew past the runway at 38 minutes. Landing is proving difficult...

Edited by Jarin

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Ok so I'll enter my oh-so-creatively named Voyager X1 for the Voyager division. I severely underestimated the powers of fuel mass fraction and altitude when designing this ugly duckling, and only expected 3-4 circumnavigations from it. It did that, and then it just kept going... and going... and going...

I got 9 circumnavigations.

I hope it's ok that I used my own K-OS code to hold altitude and provide various data. I did try mechjeb, but it kept altitude like this: UP UP UP UP OH NO I'VE PASSED IT DOWN DOWN DOWN DOWN OH NO I'VE PASSED IT BY A KILOMETER NOW UP UP UP UP I'VE LOST 200M/S DOING THIS BUT I DON'T CARE OH NO I DID IT AGAIN DOWN DOWN DOWN DOWN.

Anyways, with no further ado:

http://imgur.com/a/jZXkp

I'll try to copy all the pictures into a spoiler box. There's a lot of them. But for, now, just use the link :).

 

Edited by EpicSpaceTroll139

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On 1/16/2017 at 6:47 PM, NightshineRecorralis said:

 

http://imgur.com/a/Hq04e

My attempt ^^

Full stop @ 40:09, but I could've cut that short with a grass landing.

 

Nicely done!  I've added you to the leaderboard.

@EpicSpaceTroll139 - yeah, that's against the rules, but if you manage to pull it off, I'll create an Honorable Mention category for it!

@Invisifly2 - that's quite an impressive time!  Yes, it needs to be crewed.  But *man*, that's fast!

On 1/18/2017 at 3:15 PM, Jarin said:

These two combined mean landing gear is required, yes? No launching a tail-sitter on the runway and landing with parachutes?

I suppose there's no rule specifically requiring landing gear, and VTOLs are specifically allowed, so I think that's fine.

On 1/20/2017 at 10:42 AM, EpicSpaceTroll139 said:

Ok so I'll enter my oh-so-creatively named Voyager X1 for the Voyager division. I severely underestimated the powers of fuel mass fraction and altitude when designing this ugly duckling, and only expected 3-4 circumnavigations from it. It did that, and then it just kept going... and going... and going...

I got 9 circumnavigations.

Not bad at all!  You have taken the lead!

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So, uh... flying west is apparently substantively different aerodynamically than flying east. Still investigating the actual effects here. But my craft that can hit rapier flameout going east (1752m/s) can barely bust 1730 flying west. Runs out of fuel twice as fast, too.

Edit: Westbound run complete.

Y7Ny4Lx.png

FrtbstZ.png

 

Popped the drogues a few moments early so I landed short. Less than a km short though, so it's still solid.

Every minor tweak I try to make to this craft drops the top speed, so I think that's it for me. I somehow accidentally stumbled onto my best design apparently. I'll take solace in disproving the "Mk1s probably won't be able to compete" comment. :D

Edited by Jarin

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