A Journey to Gauss

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Posted (edited)

This will be a report of how I am doing a manned mission to the Gauss system. The planet Gauss is one of the outer planets from the "Galileo Planet

First of all I would like to introduce you to the planets and moons.


I will not be able to do much with Gauss. I will put two Relays in a polar orbit and maybe let my Lander explore the atmosphere a little bit.
On Loki I want to explore all biomes with my Lander. If necessary, the mothership will be refueled from here.
Catullus is a beast. The gravity is not very strong, but the atmosphere is 5 atm and reaches an incredible distance into space. For this reason I have
built a rocket and not an Spaceplane. Perhaps a plane could go, but I try it on another day.
Although Tarsiss has a rather thick atmosphere, the gravity is very low. Here an SSTO will be used and also all biomes shall be explored.


These vehicles are used:

The mothership brings the Lander and the crew.



The Survey probe has to explore the minerals of all bodies.



The Lander for Loki. Will also serve to refuel the mothership.



The SSTO for Tarsiss. Will stay in Orbit of Tarsiss after used.



Here ist the Ascending vehicle for Catullus. Looks a bit like an Eve Lander.:D



All vehicles have been completely built with the "stock" parts. I will like the last time (A Journey to Tellumo) describe the vehicles more precisely when
they are used.

Here is a list of the mods used



Edited by astroheiko
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First I bring the mother ship into orbit. At this point I would like to explain a few things about the mother ship:

The maximum crew capacity is 8 Kerbals. At the top is a Sr. Docking Port to dock the Lander or my tanker. The lower tank can, if required, be coupled to
the Lander so that the Lander can bring more fuel to the mother ship.
In the Cargobay is space for a Rover that can be mounted down at the Lander, a Parachute which can be docked at the Top of the Lander and a tug to bring  
the rover and/or the Parachute to the lander, if necessary.
Furthermore, two shielded docking ports are installed on the right and left to take probes or relays. On the back of the Cargobay is another, so that a
crewshuttle or similar vehicle can dock. If nothing goes I use the claw of the Tug if I have no other possibility.
I use RTGs for power generation because Gauss is far from the sun.

The total weight of the rocket was at launch 3.828,22t and cost 1.920.653 Funds, The biggest rocket I've ever had. The rocket is reusable and will land
as close as possible to the KSC.
The mothership weighs 401.58t when it reaches the orbit and then has about 5000 m/s dV. After that, it must still be full tanked and will weigh over 870t
with Relays and Landers etc. With full loading it has a range of 7900 m/s dV. Without Lander, Relays, Chutes, Rover and Tug it comes to 10228 m/s dV.



Here is a picture of my first attempt to start the monster.



Unfortunately the connection rocket/mothership was not very strong and I had to experience this here.



After I had then installed Struts in the appropriate place, it worked perfectly. The TWR is at the start 1:1.36 and I have a dV of 3960m/s. That should
be more than enough.




In the orbit I still have 825 m/s dV, so I used less than 3200. I always start by hand and do not use mods for it, i think the result is not bad.



After that I decoupled the rocket and aimed towards KSC. I use 2 foldable heat shields for re-entry.



Here is a picture just before the touchdown. I came quite close to the KSC. Shortly thereafter, I then separate the shields, since I must brake the last
meters with the engines.



made it


I received 765,000 funds back. That was worth the effort.

As you may have noticed, some of the things on the mother ship are still missing. 2 relays, the lander and the crew still have to be brought up. I will have to make some starts until I have everything to go.



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I'll be keeping track of this thread. Good luck with Catullus in particular, that one looks like Eve but worse.

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As long as there's a break in the action, nice use of colored lighting. I really like the aesthetic!

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Posted (edited)


I found Eve worse. This is certainly because I was still inexperienced. I needed a very long time until I had something useful. At Catullus I already had a basic vehicle - the Eve Lander. But I still do not want to tell too much now.


@Cunjo Carl

Thank you for the compliment. I've been inspired by eddiew. I also wanted to have a nice spaceship. Before, I've only ever put something together.




So...what do we still need?

The Lander.
He has space for 3 Kerbals, is able to refuel himself and the mothership and has all scientific equipment (except for the Survey scanner). At the top one
can put the parachutes from the Cargobay of the mothership. Below is the Sr. docking port for docking the mothership or to attach the rover. I also added some ladders to explore the surface and pack the parachutes again.
Without equipment he has a dV of 3.545m/s, a TWR of 2.25 and weighs 97,755t. With Rover and Chute he has 3.313 m/s dV, a TWR of 2.17 and weighs 101,630t.

(How is this actually in the forum with the separators? In Germany we use the "." To separate the thousands and the "," by fractions of a number. Is this
done differently in the forum? Then I would adjust.)



Here is a picture just before the start. I've used a reusable rocket again. It is able to bring approximately 110t into the orbit. Unfortunately, I
forgot to document the re-entry.



Disconnect the rocket after reaching the orbit. Then I planned a rendezvous with the motherhip...



....and docked the lander to the bottom of it, because the mothership needs the free Sr. docking port for the tanker. The mothership is in a high orbit of 5,000km, otherwise the tanker will always burn a lot of fuel to reach a low orbit. Unfortunately, I can make no use of Obertheffects. There are still 2 probes and a lot of fuel to be delivered.



Now comes the Survey probe.
It is equipped with ion engines, since it will probably need a lot dV to explore all bodies. If there is still enough fuel left, it can travel to the
next system. It owns 12 RTGs, as solar cells are no longer particularly effective so far away from Ciro. The dV is 12.151 m/s and two ejectable tanks.
How much I can use at once until the batteries are empty I still have to test.



A picture of the start. This time without reusable rocket.



After reaching an orbit of 100km, the orange tank remains. Together with the Poodle I have then almost 2693 m/s dV available before I need the ion
engines. Here I have already planned the maneuver to Gauss - 2358 m/s. This is enough to make corrections. I have to do so, because I certainly can not burn so much dV in one piece with the ion engines. 

And split the maneuver - Oh no!:P



In the next part I will launch the Tarsiss SSTO.


Edited by astroheiko
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Now comes the Tarsiss SSTO.

It has room for 3 kerbals and has all the scientific instruments on board. The ISRU equipment is located in the Cargobay. For drilling, the rear landing
gear must be retracted. The main engine consists of 2 LVN. However, these have a terrible ISP on the surface of Tarsiss. That's why I have 2 Spark
engines to get higher before I use the LVN.
The range is about 5900 m/s dV. To get it into the Gaelorbit I will still use Rapier engines, which are then discarded. Fully fueled it weighs 44,535t,
empty 19,735t. The wings have an angle of incidence of 2 degrees.



And here we are already on the runway. Unfortunately, I had no experienced pilot and so had to take a newbie. This is his very first flight and he can
fly to Gauss immediately.



Here is a picture shortly before the rapiers switch into the closed circle. The settings of the fuselage I have chosen so that the fuselage attached to the
rapier are emptied first. So I can throw them off soon and have more range.


And here it is. No more oxidizer and the tanks are empty. The rest have to do the LVN.


I chosed an orbit of 300km. We still have 5276 m/s dV and need 2371 m/s for the initial maneuver to Gauss. I think this is enough to get to Tarsiss. 
For over six years, the poor fellow must now sit alone in his cabin.



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It's not really a single stage to orbit if it jettisons those rapier engines. It looks like a pretty good spaceplane though.

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The only thing missing is the Catulluslander.
When reading the description of Catullus, I had the feeling that a kind of Eve Lander would be necessary. The first test looked very good but I had much
too much thrust and so I exchanged 2 vectors for 2 darts. Due to the weight reduction I was able to make room for 2 more kerbals and bring a little more
fuel. The performance was incredibly good. Due to the loss of Gimbal because of the missing Vector, I had to install a Reaction wheel. This could be a
bit difficult when starting.

Here is a more detailed description:

The core consists of a dart engine with an upper stage consisting of a terrier engine. Around the core are 6 more dart engines arranged in an Asparagus
These are attached to the core with small hardpoints, since the TT-38 radial decoupler was too close to the core and something often exploded. The TT-70
radial decouplers were too draggy. That's why I had to use Fuel Ducts. To be sure, I then attached Sepratrons, which together with the Decouplers
All ladders, parachutes, landing legs and scientific instruments are attached to decouplers and are separated shortly before or after take-off. The
parachutes I have turned something, so that they do not destroy the landing legs when falling down.

The whole thing weighs 62,485t. Stage 1 has a surface TWR of 1.55, Stage 2 TWR is 1.51(Surface), Stage 3 TWR 1.41(Surface) an the last Stage has 0.99
(Vacuum)). Total dV is 7522 m/s (Vacuum). The Lander has room for 3 Kerbals and they should be able to walk on the surface an collect the science from the equipment, if the ladders are
mounted correct.



Below, I have built a transfer stage with 8 LVN, which has 5024 m / s dV. And underneath that my tried and tested 200t SSTO Rocket.



So it looks all together when it is on the launchpad.



After reaching the AP of over 70km I open the fairing.



Since the payload weighs only 130 tons and my SSTO rocket can do 200 tons, I have brought the Lander to a 200 km orbit before I separated it.



After that, the rocket returned to the surface.



Here is a picture just before the surface.



Just 3.2 km before the launchpad, that's fine.



293,000 Funds Cashback



Then I increased the orbit of the Lander to 500km and planned the initial maneuver. The transfer stage has 4,718 m/s dV and after the burn there remains
around 2,400 m/s.


But now we have everything, right?
The mothership still needs 2 probes and must be refueled. Does not that end at all?

2 minutes ago, eloquentJane said:

It's not really a single stage to orbit if it jettisons those rapier engines. It looks like a pretty good spaceplane though.

Ohmmmmm ...
Yes. I mean, actually, that it's getting away from Tarsiss in one piece. But I'll call it Spaceplane in the future.

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8 minutes ago, astroheiko said:

Yes. I mean, actually, that it's getting away from Tarsiss in one piece. But I'll call it Spaceplane in the future.

Ah I see. So it is an SSTO just not at the homeworld. In that case I think the terminology is accurate (similar to how a Laythe SSTO in the stock system wouldn't necessarily be an SSTO at Kerbin but would still be an SSTO where it's supposed to be one).

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Since the mothership still needs two Relays and crew, I have thought of bringing the stuff with a SSTO into the orbit. To this I have developed a brand
new one. It should have enough space to load a rover and 2 Relays to refresh the equipment of a returned mothership. Also place to exchange the team. In
the picture are now only 2 Relays, since a rover is already in the mothership.



It actually worked quite well (Apart from the fact that the runway was not enough. 3 times it still bounced in the grass until finally it was in the air)
and already on the first flight I reached the orbit. Unfortunately, I did not have enough fuel to reach the high orbit of the mother ship. This is not
going as planned. So the mothership had to go to the SSTO, since I have to refuel anyway that does not matter. But the Lander I left in the parking
orbit. Otherwise, I may have to refuel 3 times.



The Relays I have equipped with RCS so that they can come alone to the docking ports without having to use the Tug. In the picture you can see that the
first Relay is already hanging on the mothership and the second is straight on the way. After docking to the mothership, I detach the RCS from the
Relays, which we no longer need.



Now the mothership can return to the Lander. Then the tanker arrives and gets the mothership just two-thirds full. I need to bring over 100,000 units of
liquid fuel, but the tanker has only about 60,000 units. That thing is quite thirsty.


And so the tanker goes back to Iota.


While the tanker produces fuel, I want to land my brand new SSTO. Oh boy, I should have tested it before - of course, it is not at all stable at the re-
entry and I can not slow down early enough. I have flown too far and have to turn around to get to the runway. At least the landing approach now looks good.



Thank god I have pressed F5 before, the tail has touched the runway. 6 times the same until I had it down.



Here you can see why. The main gear is too far forward. This SSTO I need to revise and without test I run no longer the thing.


Once I have to refuel and then I can go.


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Where were we? Oh yes, we still need fuel, a lot of fuel.

The tanker filled his stomach on Iota and is about to burst. That should be enough to get the mother ship full.



I have to be careful not to forget one of the many tanks.



After the undocking, I check again that all tanks are full?
All Relays docked?
Rover on board?
Tug too?
The lander at the front of the mother ship?
Shut off the lander's engines?



Then it can finally go. I plan the course to Gauss and carry out the maneuver. 21 minutes burning time - Urgh .....:confused: During the burning process the two
upper LVN engines fall out - argh.:/ Through the hardpoint there is no supply and I have to refill by hand. Hopefully I will not miss Gauss.



Next is the Survey probe. Because of the Poodle engine, burning is faster. No failures or other dung. I meet Gauss very well.



Then comes the Catullus Lander. This time it is almost 14 minutes of burning time - well, it will be finished sometime.;.;



The Tarsiss SSTO also takes almost 11 minutes - I do not like anymore.:huh:



Somewhere in the middle between Gael and Gauss, I then make corrections. Basically, I change the inclination only when I have left the sphere of
influence of Gael. This costs considerably less fuel. The individual maneuvers follow in detail.

The Survey probe still has 300 m/s dV in the transfer stage. 
I need 6 m/s to adjust the inclination roughly. This does not have to be so exact, because I have to go anyway at Gauss still 90 degrees. Important is
only a low periapsi to break cheap - here I have 600 km. The remaining 294 m/s I will use to slow down when I am at the Periapsis. That fits quite well -
I should reach a nice high apoapsis. The inclination changes then becomes nice cheap. Only then will I need the ion engines.



With the Catullus Lander it becomes more difficult. 
If possible, I want to enter the sphere of influence of Gauss so, that the trajectory is so diverted that I then arrive at Catullus. With as little
inclination as possible. After getting back and forth I managed to reach this with 15.1 m/s a periapsis of 288km at Catullus and almost 0 degrees of
inclination. The atmosphere starts at 280km - I am very satisfied with it. When the Lander arrives at Catullus there are still over 2150 m/s dV available
to slow down, which should be enough.



The maneuver for the mothership is getting slightly easier again. 
I set Loki as the target to see the mark for the AN/DN Node. Then the periapsis is placed as far as possible on this mark. Now, if the braking maneuver
has been performed, one of the AN/DN marks is near the apoapsis. There the inclination can then be adjusted cheaply. Then I see further where I should go



The Tarsis SSTO will be the last one, and it will be difficult again. 
Just like the Catullus Lander, I would like to slow down at the periapsis of Gauss and then reach Catullus with a small inclination and low periapsis.
The first maneuver costs 7.8 m/s dV. At the periapsis of Gauus I have to brake then 327,48 m/s, so that I reach a periapsis of 280km at Catullus. Next I
have not planned yet, which becomes too inaccurate. Anyway, then at Catullus is planned a breaking to reach an orbit at Tarsiss.


Now I'm finally up to date, In six years it continues.:D 

It is possible that the reports are now slower and/or shorter because I do not know how quickly I will progress.



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So fast 6 years go by and the mothership with the fat-headed little green people has arrived at Gauss.

First, I get the science for the High Orbit of Gauss.



Then I brake the mothership around 300 m/s to reach a high AP. The PE lies easily in the atmosphere of Gauss, so I get at least some data from the
planet. Don`t forget the low Orbit science.



Actually, I wanted to first explore Loki, but while watching the orbit I noticed that I am very close to Catullus. And so I decided to go straight to
Catullus - Loki has to wait. For just 46 m/s I reach a PE of 296km at Catullus.



Before I reach Catullus, I set off the two relays. The two have then increased the AP to 100.000km, so they are not caught by Catullus. At the AP, I
then turned the two into a 90 degree inclination - each 250 m/s costs the maneuver. The relays will be sent to a high northern and southern polar orbit around
Gauss. I have to split the maneuvers, because I can only burn 240 m / s at a time (Ions). At the first braking I lower the orbit from 100,000km to 25,000km,
then 12,000km, etc. It is planned then a PE of 1,000km and a polar AP of at least 1,000,000km.



Here I had the opportunity to make some beautiful pictures of Gauss, Catullus and Tarsiss. 



In the last picture, you can see that Catullus just throws his shadow on Gauss. At the edge of the shadow, Loki also just appears behind the planet.H32tm3y.jpg


But let us now continue with the mother ship. At Catullus I brake for 230 m/s and get an AP of 20.000km. I will try to get a lower orbit with aerobraking. Since I
am at the PE over 4000 m/s fast I can not dive very far into the atmosphere, just 260km at an atmosphere hight of 280km. Everything gets hot very quickly.
I start with an AP of 10,000 km. After the first brake maneuver I have 8.700km, it follows 7.980km, 7.232km, 6.637km, 6.030km, 5.407km, 4.864km, 4.385km,
3.962km and 3.574km. This is enough to not be caught by Tarsiss. I now increase the PE to 290km.



Finally, I put the claw on top of the lander to capture the unmanned Catulluslander.1wDt5Gu.jpg


Now it is waiting for the other vehicles to arrive. Meanwhile, I will bring the relays to the final orbit.


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Today there are many pictures and boring maneuvers.

Soon it gets serious - we are slowly approaching the interesting part of the story. But one after anonther:

While waiting for the arrival of the other vehicles, the relays are brought to their final orbit. PE at 1.000km, AP at 2.000.000km. For an orbit they need 1 year and 155 days.

The Catulluslander is the first vehicle after the mothership arriving in the Gauss Sphere of Influence.
The trajectory fits quite well, I burn a small correction maneuver for 2.4 m/s to lower the PE at Catullus to 280km. For this maneuver I turned off 8 of the 10 LVN and the last two throttled to 10%. This way you can maneuver very precisely.



Then I planned a maneuver in the orbit of Catullus to slow down and adapt the orbit to the mothership. The brake maneuver needs 1.441m/s.




After this maneuver, I changed the inclination by 0.9 degrees and accelerated at the AP for 84 m/s to reach an intercept with the mothership.




With the claw monuted on the mothership I have then catches the Catulluslander. Now the Catulluslander can be manned and everything is prepared. But I can not land yet, because the other vehicles have already arrived and first have to be brought to their Orbits.

(Thre are 2 solar eclipses simultaneously on Gauss)




The Survey probe is next.



In the transfer stage are still 294 m/s left. This I use to slow down at Gauss and get an orbit with an AP of 108.000km.



Then I dropped the burned out stage. From now I have still ion drive available.



At the AP, I then planned a maneuver for 405.9 m/s to reach a polar orbit at Catullus. There I then lowered the AP to 1.500km to make an Orbital Survey.


(Again 2 solar eclipses on Gauss, which does not seem as rare as I thought)HU8Q6F3.jpg


Meanwhile the Tarsiss SSTO has already arrived.



It has braked at the PE of Gauss for 326.4 m/s and had then also at Catulluss a PE of 280 km.




At Catullus, the inclination was adjusted (36 m/s) and braked for another 560 m/s to reach a stable orbit. 


The Tarsiss SSTO remains here in a parking orbit until I was on Catullus.

All vehicles have now arrived and in a stable orbit. When I wanted to finish the game, I once again checked if interesting offers are available.

God has that guy luck. Of course, I take him with me.




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Now we will land, nothing can stop us now.

I am separating the lander from the mothership...



... lower the AP, aim to a nice spot and lower the PE to 100km. Then I release the transfer stage, unfold the heat shield and activate the airbrakes.


(I have been waiting extra with the landing to I have all the bodies in the background)



Shortly before entering the atmosphere, the lander still has a surface speed of 3120 m/s.



Somewhere at 200km then the entrance effects come. Everything remains beautifully stable. The entry into the atmosphere is by far not as extreme as with Eve. At 115km the speed has already decreased to 1524 m/s. The maximum negative acceleration is 1.8 G. Here I have already done some scientific research.



At about 45km the parachutes release and I slow down to 223 m/s.



Now the atmosphere really becomes a soup. The planets disappear in the fog.



At 7000m the weather clears up again. The Lander has reduced its speed to 100 m/s.



At 2750m the parachutes then open completely and the lander reaches its landing speed of 6 m/s.






Science is first collected, then the devices are reset, and investigations are started again. Collect all and...



...say CHEESE...(In the background are Gauss, Tarsiss and the small moon is Loki)



All Kerbals go back on board and then ... Oh my God!



No panic. The fireworks were planned (Jeb insisted on a firework). I have attached all the ladders, parachutes, the airbrakes and scientific instruments to
decouplers. Before the start, these must be discarded in order to save weight.



Here I save first, it can always go something wrong. Before the launch I put the SAS on Surface and Radial out. So that I can see better
if the tanks are empty, I have also brought them to the screen. Shortly after the start, the landing legs are still decpoupled.



I switch the SAS to Prograde and tilt it slightly to the horizon to reach a Gravity turn. Since I must be very careful. If I
tilt her too much, she would flip around. (As a tip for all who bring a similar rocket here, I recommend elevons or winglets
to keep the course better. Vector engines would also go, but since the gravity is not so high, one does not necessarily need)
The first stage is empty and we no longer need the Balast.



At an altitude of 20km, the next stage is empty and is discarded. The rocket also does not lean too much - does not look bad so far.



Here I have time to make a nice picture of the ascent.



Shortly after reaching the 67km mark, the next stage is empty. The flight curve is a bit too steep, I wanted to have here
about 45 degrees. Therefore, I do not load again, it will work. At an altitude of 100km and an AP of 200km I throttle the rocket to 1/3 thrust to flatten the curve.


When the AP reached 280 km, I turn the rocket to the horizon and burn the rest of the stage and throw it off. Then I set at the AP
a maneuver to bring the PE to over 280km - 1300 m/s.


Done. Stable orbit over 280km and still 1621 m/s dV left. At my best test I still had more than 2000 m/s.


Now I can go back to the mothership.

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I am planning a rendezvous with the mothership...



...and transfer all scientific experiments and the crew except of Jeb. Then I refuel the Catullusrocket and undock.



Because I still need to catch the poor stranded Kerbal.



After that, we go back to the mothership, fill the rest of the fuel into the lander, transfer the entire crew to the
mothership and discard the rest of the catullus lander forever.

Now I have to bring the Survey Probe into a polar orbit around Tarsiss. For a total of 610 m/s I get a nice polar orbit.




In the orbit of Tarsiss I lowered the PE to 110km and could thus slow down in the atmosphere very nicely. Then I increased the
orbit and performed Orbital Survey Scan.



Now I know where I can refuel the Tariss SSTO with ISRU and plan a docking maneuver with the mothership.




I take over the team and head to Tarsiss. For just 36 m/s I get an intercept. Where are my pictures? I think because I forgot to press F1.:P

In any case, I lowered the PE at Tarsiss to 115km and reached again with aerobraking an orbit. Then I increased the PE again to get a stable orbit.


The Tarsiss SSTO is now waiting for its deployment.

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Before I land I mark all biomes.



Then I change the orbit to land near the biome "Atoll".



Next, I lower the PE to 100km for aerobraking.



When entering the atmosphere, I set the SAS on Surface and Radial out to effectively brake.



The descent continues forever so I set the SAS to Radial in to speed up.



The low gravity is one of the main reasons for this. Then at least we have time to take pictures.



Since I have far too much wings I can land only when I am slower than 10 m/s, otherwise, I pluck off and am back in the air. I open all cargo bays to have as much drag as possible.



Immediately after landing, I begin with scientific investigations. To reset the Mystery Goo unit, I have to move the front chassis. By the way - I do not know why I have one - at 10 m/s landing speed.:P



Then I set the flag and make a reminder photo. Tarsiss is really a gem. The crew goes back on board and I refuel again with ISRU. 14 days lasts, I only have the small Convert-O-Tron. I remember the ISP for this altitude - ISP at 3571m 160 LVN, 267 Spark. This could be important later, if I want to leave the moon again.



Since the Methanlake is nearby, I also want to join this biom. So I release the brakes, roll down the hill and take off without doing anything at 15 m/s. Much to much wings.



I glided so beautiful there for and when I reach the lake... NOOOOO!

the plane drowned. Now I have SSTU- boat:/



I quickly do all scientific experiments and activate all the engines I have. The ISP is now only 80 for the LVN. Thank goodness, the Spark here still has 250. At 13.5 m/s, I'm back out of the lake. Much to much wings ...:huh:.I'm looking for a place on the shore to refuel, this action has quite a lot of fuel consumed. At the same time I can still visit the Highland and the Midland Biome.


Here you can also see how I stowed the drill in the Cargo Bay. In order to drill, I must move however the rear chassis.

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The next stop is planned at the Biome Mare Major.



Here I refuel again and do some science.



On the wayto the next Biom...



...Twin Craters.



Next, Lowlands follows. Since I still have some fuel, I am looking for a higher starting place and refuel.



The poles will follow next. As always, here too, we will refuel.



With an intermediate stop, I reach the last Biom, Great slopes. After that, I set off towards the equator to have a good start
position for the ascent into the orbit.



I really wanted to start somewhere higher to have better ISP values, but at 2795m it will already go. The Sparks have an ISP of
263.7 and the LVNs 138,7. One last time I fill up full. At the start, only the Sparks are used, since the LVN would only be a waste of fuel.

First, I choose a flat angle to reach a speed of 40 m/s. Then I adjust the ascent angle to hold 35 m/s. This starts at 25 degrees and increases to up to 40 degrees.



When the oxidizer is exhausted, I turn on the LVN engines. This is the case at 6000m. The ISP of the LVN is now at 240, which
is already much more efficient, in addition, I accelerate to 50 m/s. Slowly the ISP and the thrust are rising. At 7500m it is
already at 340 and I increase the angle gradually to get on high. At 9500m the ISP is 400 and I have an ascent angle of 55 degrees.


When I reach 14000m, the ISP is already 500 and I throttle the engines not to exceed 60 m/s. If I now speed up I will be too
fast and the drag eats a big part of the thrust. After all, I have to reach 130000m before the atmosphere ends.
At 18500m I cross an ISP of 600 and at 20000m I flatten the flight curve to an ascent angle of 15 degrees. Now I increase the
speed to 200 m/s (orbit) and then throttle to 1/3 thrust to only slowly get faster.



At 26500m, the ISP is now at 700. The climb rate of the SSTO is now over 100 m/s. First when I have reached 60000m height I
increase the thrust to 1/2. In addition, I switch the SAS to Surface and select prograde. So I have the least drag.
At 76500m the ISP is almost at 800 (795) and at reaching an AP of 140000m I stop the engines. Then I burn at the AP for 156 m/s to reach a stable orbit. The tanks are still almost half full and I have an awful lot fuel left, 3413 m/s dV.



Conclusion for Tarsiss SSTO:
Way too big. I should not have used so many wings. In addition, an LVN would have sufficed, as I have used most of the time
only 1/3 thrust. So I would have had to take less fuel, of course, and the SSTO would have been half as big and still had the
same performance.
I have practiced the rise of Tarsiss more than once, and whenever I got too fast too early, I had less fuel left. This is unusual,
usually you want to fly as fast as possible to reach the orbit. I think that has several reasons. On the one hand there is the
high atmosphere, which causes enormous drag losses until you are in orbit. On the other hand, the fact that the gravitational
force is very low and thus less loss of gravitational losses. In addition, you need to accelerate first when the LVN have
increased their efficiency.

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For 203 m/s I burn a suitable orbit to meet with the mothership.



Then in the orbit of Catullus I adjust the inclination by 1.4 degrees (33.8 m/s), brake at the AP for 136.4 m/s to get an intercept with the mothership.



Then I dock with the help of the claw.



Now the data will be transmitted first and then the crew. The Tarsiss SSTO I leave back, it still has almost 3000 m/s dV. Maybe I need it again sometime.



The mothership with the Lander is now on the trip to Loki. I put a maneuver node for 430 m/s to leave Catullus and reach a course that takes me to Loki.



For a further 175.4 m/s I can then reach a low PE at Loki. Before I corrected the inclination by 3.4 degrees.




At the PE of Loki I then still burnt retrograde to reach a stable orbit.




Now I have to prepare everything for the exploration of Loki. This includes attaching the rover to the bottom of the lander.
To do this, I loosen the Tug with the claw from the upper end of the lander and maneuver it to the rover.



As I approach the docking port, I notice a construction error of the mothership. The LVN engine is in the way. Hopefully I get the Rover out.



Of course he remains stuck.



Somehow he solved himself and I still get it out.



I take the rover away from the mother ship (You can see it in the background), loosen the tug and stick it back to the mother ship. Now i undock the lander and move him to the rover.



Then I dock the lander to the rover. Now everything is ready for the descent.



Before I mark as usual all biomes.



At the control where there is ore for ISRU, I notice that I have not made an Orbital Survey. I'm still catching up. The probe
was still in a orbit around Tarsiss. I spare you the maneuvers.


Now everything is ready and soon we can land.

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Today we can finally explore Loki. The descent is going without problems, finally something normal again after the whole turbulence around Catullus and Tarsiss.



I land first in the Biom Krawling Skin and start with the explorations.



At the landing approach I noticed that I am not far from the next Biom and so I grab the rover and drive to the next Biome.
After only 400m am already there. I do the usual research and drive back again.



On the occasion I can also show you how I dock the Rover back to the Lander. In the Science Jr. a docking port is hidden with which I drive under the lander.



With a bit of luck, the force of Attraction is enough and the rover docks by itself. If this is not the case (by higher gravity), I can still retract one or two landing legs of the Lander and then it will definitely work.



On the way to the next Biom. Again, I catch another good landing field and can do 2 biomes with one single landing. The next time it worked again and I still have enough fuel to reach the last biom.



Now I am preparing for the return to the mothership again. I leave the rover back (don´t forget to extend the antenna), put a flag and the crew gathered to the obligatory memorial photo.
The saved Kerbal, which I have picked up from the Catullus orbit has now received its fifth star. That was fast. In the background you can see Catulluss and Tarsiss.



I fill the up the Lander and make me on the way. This time I have to dock at the stern of the mothership, because here is the removable tank. I must still refuel the mothership.



After docking I need the tug again. The adapter piece for the rover has to be attached to the tug, otherwise I can do nothing more with the tug.



First I use the clamp to get the piece away from the lander. Now comes a stupid maneuver, because the adapter must be at the other end of the tug. For some time,
the part hovers now uncontrolled in the space and I need good luck to catch it while it rotates. This solution is unsatisfactory. I have to think of something else.



Strangely everything worked out at the first attempt (and I had already thought of so nice Scold words). So I can put the tug back into the Cargo bay. Without to curse.



Now begins the monotonous phase of refueling. I decouple the lander with the additional tank and make me again on the way to the surface.



Here you can see better how the lander now looks with the additional tank.



Holy Cow, 14.92% Ore. The richest ore place ever. I had never such a high value. The Lander is immediately full again.


I will now have to bring at least 5 times fuel to the mother ship. I have not yet checked how much dV I will need to return to Gael. This could take a while.

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Posted (edited)

Meanwhile in the KSC:
Wernher of Kerman: Hey Gus, come once here.
Gus Kerman: What is going on?
W: Our brave Kerbal have already landed on Catullus?
G: Yes, a nice visit to the moon, is not it?
W: Yeah, sure. Only .... the data will by far not be sufficient for my .. ehrm our knowledge. Do you have a suggestion?
G: We could use several of our already proven Catulluslanders to get more data.
Mortimer: Nooooo ...... hyperventilating .... For this we do not have enough money to finance your stupid brain cracks. Make a better proposal.
G: I made a few calculations on toilet paper while I held a session...ehrm...We have done extensive calculations on supercomputers... and have already a design for an aircraft for Catullus, which should be able to get back into orbit.
W: Fantastic. This would allow us to collect all the data that I am missing. Here we go!
G: Umhh... There is still a small problem.
W: What? The return?
G. No No. We still have our friends in orbit around Gauss, they could bring them back home with them. We simply know not how to bring the plane into the orbit around Gael, the thing weighs more than 250      tons. I will show you: 



G: No, no. You know it will not work. The wings will make sure that ...
W: Oh, yes ... Aerodynamics. There was of something.
G: We could simply put 4 rapiers with tanks at the center of gravity and perform a classic spaceplane start.
W: OK. That's how we do it. What do you mean Mortimer - do we get green light?
M: Is it cheap?
W: Yes. Definitely ....I believe at least ....
M: I dont believe a word you say.
G: Come on Wernher, let's just leave him alone. We'll look at it more closely.COwqS5i.jpg

G: I think that does not lift off.
W: Oh what ... Uhhh ...does not look so good. Look, the end of the runway is already ..... Oh no!Spq7zfs.jpg


G: That was clearly too slow. 80m/s is not enough to take off. Do you have suggestions?
W: Still 4 Rapier and at the bottom 2 hammers to get to speed? You can then discard it.
G: Sounds good. And look, this looks great with the hammers at the start - makes decent noise.WEmNXom.jpg


W: Oh, yes. And look, just as the runway ends, it raises. But what is that? Where is it going?
G. Darn. It has lost speed and has fallen into the water.



W: excrements. 150m/s are still too slow. Let's add a few boosters and see what happens?
G: Clearly. Why not. As long as Mortimer does not get a heart attack, we can still play a bit.
W: Holy Cow! What happens now?



G: You know. Too big thrust offset angle and massive thrust.
W: Oh, damn it. Abort! Abort! But that brings me to an idea.
G: I guess I know what you mean. A.....
W: Vertical start. We take 2 TwinBoars underneath and also a few wings with 4 Rapier.
G: Well if it does not work now ...



W: Nooo! Not there.



G: Now Mortimer is going through. The runway is in the ass.
W: No, he does not. I locked him up in the cellar, we do not see him again so quickly.

     OK. We bring 2 big tailfins at the back and we wait with the ignition of the boars at the start, until the Rapiers have more thrust. That will work out.



G: Whoa. Look. It's worked out.
W: Yes. And neat speed it has also on it. This time it is definitely in the air. Sigmin will be happy not to have headaches again.



G: So, he can drop the boars now.
W: Hui. Works on the first try. Hopefully this goes with the Rapier also well.



W: Oh No! That is going to bee too hot.



G: I knew it. I knew it right away. The poor Sigmin, who will be angry.



W: Ok - next try. This time we're trying to gain faster in height, or what do you mean?
G: Maybe the plane will not get so hot?
W: So far so good. I think Sigmin should now switch to the dart engines and drop off the Rapier.
G: Yes, the height will probably be better. Now he should ...



W: ...get terrible headache. Today everything goes wrong. The idea with the wings to the rapier we can forget. They just make holes in the airplane at the detachment.
G: Then we put them down at the plane and throw it off when we are almost in orbit. Then are the forces not so strong.
W: Good idea. Now we have come so far. Since now nothing can go wrong:



G: Okay. Test Catullus Spaceplane the 23rd. Rapier first and wait for 1000kn thrust.
W: Then start the boars and loosen the clamps.



G: pitch downwards until 10 degrees are reached and accelerate.
W: Now the boars are burnt out. We already have 490m/s.



W: Gus. What do you think? Sigmin has already reached 22000m. The rapiers are now leaving.
G: Yes. He should ignite the darts and switch the rapiers to support them.



G: Ok. Away with the rapiers, they are done.
W: That'll be so hot again. Hopefully it will work this time otherwise Sigmin is going to sweat.



G: Before he starts to stink, he's supposed to pull the nose up. Then it gets slower and it gets cooler.
W: In addition, he is gaining height faster.



G: This does not look very stable.
W: No matter. Main thing it works this time.



G: Phew. All still in one piece. He already has the apoasis of 75000m.
W: Ok. Away with the wings and the Tailfins. So much that has not been brought anyway.



W: He did it. The battle-scarred old fellow got into the orbit.
G: Ok. Then we can finish the test phase and get Mortimer back from the cellar.


(2 weeks now I'm already battling this aircraft and am still not satisfied. The phase after the rapping of the rapiers I must still correct, then it can go.)


Edited by astroheiko
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The mothership was meanwhile refueled. Initially, 32700 units of fuel were in the tanks. After the first charge of fuel it was 40200 units.



After the second charge of fuel it was 47600 units. 3rd-55500, 4th-63000, 5th.-63000, 6th-70700, 7th-85900, 8th-93500, 9th-101100. After the tenth charge (109000) I then again coupled the additional tank to the mother ship.



Then I landed with the lander again and returned to the mothership. Now it is almost full again and has over 9000 m/s dV available.



Then I put the Catuluss Spaceplane into orbit. Here is a picture of the start. I have two Fins attached to make it more stable. How it starts I've already described above. When it has landed on Catullus, I explain the function of the plane more precisely.



Here it is in orbit and still has 4390 m/s dV. I do not know yet whether it will reach Catullus or if I have to fill up the Spaceplane before - where is my pocket calculator?


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I want to make sure that the Catullus Spaceplane has enough fuel and decided to refuel. I also have to brake actively
when I arrive, otherwise the vehicle ignites when entering the atmosphere.

I am lazy and just use my SSTO 200 rocket, build a few Vernors and a claw to it and finished. I do not take extra fuel,
because the rocket should have more than enough if it is in orbit. After all, you could still pack 200 tons and she would
still reach Orbit.



Everything goes as usual and the rocket rises very fast, the weight is missing.



With more than enough fuel I reach the spaceplane and prepare everything for docking.



Now I can refuel. The spaceplane needs 12000 units of oxidizer and 10000 units of liquid fuel. In the SSTO rocket is more than double.



Then send the rocket back to the KSC.



I land about 5 km from the Launchpad and still have over 1000m dV. As a reward, I get 273000 funds back.



Then I plan the maneuver to get to Gauss.


The trip starts in 388 days.

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It has been a while since the last update, which was due to the long flight time of the Spaceplane. But now the reports follow again at shorter intervals.

Long ago, the Catullus Space Plane had set off to Gauss. After 6 long years, it has arrived today in the Gauss system.



To get a low PE at Catullus I plan a maneuver for 419.7 m/s. The corresponding tracks look a bit confusing but I believe this time the computer.



It actually worked and shortly afterwards I can reach a low orbit of about 300km around Catullus for another 1140 m/s.



In order not to get burnt when entering the atmosphere, I have to brake with the engines. To do this, I set the SAS to Surface and retrograde. Then I burn as long as the speed reaches about 2000 m/s. Then I put the SAS on radial out and activate the airbrakes.



It is getting turbulent and the spaceplane is threatening to become unstable. Therefore I go to about 1500 m/s on prograde. Now the spaceplane is slow enough not to overheat.



At about 500 m/s, I disable the aribrakes. The critical phase of the descent is now over.



Over time, the spaceplane becomes slower. Between 12000m and 8000m comes the cloud soup. Now we're down soon.



When it is only 1000m to the surface I pull the nose slowly higher. If the spaceplane is empty it can land with about 60 m/s.






In the next post I will introduce you to the Spaceplane more precisely.



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While the spaceplane is refueling I can already mark all the biomes I would like to visit. Oh ... is not that a question mark? Because I'm curious - an annomaly?



As promised, I now show you the Spaceplane somewhat more precisely. In the rear cargobay is located the drill for ISRU, which is angled to reach the surface. Then there is the ScienceJR unit and the MysteryGoo unit in this cargo space.



In the front Cargobay, the small Convert-O-Tron, the remaining scientific instruments and 2 folding radiators are housed. For the final ascent, the entire under section is split off shortly after the start. In order not to cause any damage, I added 2 Seoratrons at the front. These are triggered when the section is disconnected and should quickly form a distance from the rest.



Here you can see the spaceplane again as a whole. As long as I stay on the moon it will remain so. If I want to go back to the orbit, I will drop the lower section, then the two outer large tanks, then the inner two, then the big wings, then the rear fins, the three radially attached tanks and finally the rear dart mitsamt. All that remains are the cabins, a middle tank and a terrier. When it is time, I show it again.



Currently, the flight profile looks like this. I start and lift off only when the speed has reached 90 m/s. Then I fly first flat to build more speed. At 180m/s, I go to prograde and the spaceplane now slowly lifts its nose. I stay in the region around 200 m/s and at 30km altitude I fly horizontally. Here, the spaceplane needs only little thrust. When the fuel is empty, I lower the nose to about 15 degrees below the horizon and sail to the ground at 100-150 m/s. I'm still not sure if this is the best method.


Arrival at the polar regions. Thought I had to land in the fog.The cloud cover did not light up until I was only 200m away from the ground.
The range on the moon is very limited. To get from the equator to the poles 3 intermediate landings are necessary. The Spaceplane needs more than 100 days to fill up. I have tried a lot to increase the range, LVN for example, but until this works effectively I would have to reach an altitude of over 70km. But I always went out of fuel before I could use the LVN. Catullus is really not easy.



That was hard to find. Looks like a rock from above.




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Now it's getting serious. All the biomes are explored, the spaceplane is refueled and parked at the
equator. I have tried to find a place as high as possible, which makes the start easier. In the
tests, however, I also managed to get to Orbit at places with less than 1500m altitude. I check
again the order as the tanks are emptied, the staging and emptying the ore tanks to be as easy as



Here we go. I mark the individual tank levels, so I see when I have to trigger the individual
stages. For liftoff the spaceplane needs at least 80 m/s. Shortly after lifting, the lower section
is empty and is already thrown away. At 180 m/s I go to prograde. Slowly the nose of the spaceplane rises.



With an ascent angle of 50 degrees I set the SAS on hold to not fly even steeper. Shortly
thereafter the outer tanks are empty and are thrown off. Now that there are 2 darts engines
missing, the spaceplane is getting slower and goes back to 140 m/s before it gets faster again.



Shortly after reaching 60km altitude, the second tank is empty and is also thrown away.



Then the main wing.



And the control wings. Then I switch the SAS back on prograde and accelerate further until the
Apoapsis has reached 300km.



Just before reaching the AP of 300km, the next stage burns out. Away with it. I now switch off the engines and wait until I reach the AP.



At the AP, I set another maneuver for about 1100 m/s and reach a stable orbit.


I still have more than 2700 m/s dV. The previous stage is still one-third full. I did not need the
last one at all. This is by far my best attempt to reach the orbit.

I DID IT...All biomes and the monolith and back to Orbit. That was really really hard.:D

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