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Shuttle Challenge v5 - The STS thread [Stock and Mod Friendly] - MAJOR CHALLENGE ANNOUNCEMENT! - 30.3.2020


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Hey, this is my attempt to the first part of the STS Challenge !

Here is the Artisan v2, a 80t. shuttle empty with 40t. capacity inside a mk3 bay. At the moment it's still a prototype as I think it lacks TWR for landing on something else than Minmus. It is powered by only 2 Dart and 2 Nervs, and has 3200m/s with maximum payload loaded. It also has one regular docking port, one senior, and of course RCS ports everywhere.

The first design part was quite easy, I came with the idea of putting the shuttle under a booster to make lift-off easier because I never tried to angle engines through CoM, and because it looks good (in my opinion) :D. Landings required some tweaks and I ended up with something that has 3+ lift/drag ratio around sea level with 0 incidence on the wings, I tried to had some but the wings would pop up every time ... =_=

caop5l.jpg

 

It's launcher has no name but is very colorfull instead :D

1st stage boosts this thing up with around 1400m/s on 2 mammoths, second stage consists on 2x 2 Vectors, providing around 2400m/s when everything is loaded to the top. There is also another Sr. port on the top because I tried to recover the second stage with the shuttle docked above it, but let's just say it ended up the Kerbal Way..!

r1u9ox.jpg

Lift-off

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Stage-2 in action

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Second stage almost empty and the shuttle in orbit

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Undocking

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Retro burn

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Re-entry

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Descent on KSC

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Final approach

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Landed on the runway

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This was done with a 40t. payload (3300ore) to test the strength of a new landing gear, with no mods, but with Making History.

Thanks for reading, good night / day :D

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@michal.don A quick question before I carry on with my missions.  I am currently in the middle of mission STS 5-8, can you build me.  On the last flight I thought I would land on the Island runway just to vary things.  This decision was made while still in orbit, and not because I had overshot KSC, but then I wondered if this would count for the Commander badge?  As the island runway is a lot smaller than the KSC runway, in theory it is more difficult, but if it doesn't count then I have a game save at the point where I was about to do my de-orbit burn so I can redo my landing to land at KSC.

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 I am terrible at reading requirements.  My first attempt at the telescope mission was void because I didn't realise what an MMU was, and all subsequent missions I had it fixed in my mind that you had to land back at KSC for the Commander medal.

Thanks for that @4x4cheesecake

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Mission report for mission STS-5-8.

As this report contains images for all the elements of Mission STS-5-8, as well as a couple of bonus missions, it's quite image heavy.
 

Spoiler


STS-5 on the pad.  Payload is the Service module, including the required RCS, engine and reaction wheels.  It also has fuel to provide refuelling options.

sts5801.jpg

 

Well and truly on our way

sts5802.jpg

 

Orbit for deployment established at 350km

sts5803.jpg

 

Service module deployed

sts5804.jpg

 

Return to KSC ready for the next mission

sts5805.jpg

 

STS-6 with the Habitation module as payload.  2 MMUs are also loaded but it turns out we only need one

sts5806.jpg

 

Everything looking good

sts5807.jpg

 

Closing in on the service module

sts5808.jpg

 

Jeb and Valentina are ready to perform the hard work

sts5809.jpg

 

As the mission moved in to Kerbin's shadow, it turns out Valentina hasn't got her MMU night rating, so Jeb had to do this one on his own.

sts5810.jpg

 

Habitation module safely connected

sts5811.jpg

 

Jeb and Valentina just need to RCS back to the crew compartment, and then we can go home.

sts5812.jpg

 

Back at KSC, mission review shows how few stages there were in the mission.  Jeb reckons the G-meter is broken though.

sts5813.jpg

 

Bonus mission STS-6b to attach a power and communication module to the station

sts5814.jpg

 

Jeb is starting to get used to this

sts5815.jpg

 

Communication and power module successfully delivered

sts5816.jpg

 

Back to the required missions.  STS-7, science module 1, on the pad.  This one consists of the processing lab, and a number of experiments.

sts5817.jpg

 

Another good launch

sts5818.jpg

 

Need to get close, as this is a big module to manoeuvre in to place

sts5819.jpg

 

Jeb is being really careful not to scratch the sides, due to the large excess on his insurance policy.

sts5820.jpg

 

Well that's the tricky bit done

sts5821.jpg

 

This is going together well

sts5822.jpg

 

STS-7 is asked to divert to Island due to an oil spill on the KSC runway.  Valentina agreed providing they get a flight home, as she gets seasick.

sts5823.jpg

 

Jeb is glad they upgraded the brakes compared to the craft he flew on earlier missions.

sts5824.jpg

 

STS-8 with Science module 2.  This consists of 2 Science Juniors and some scanning equipment for orbital surveys.

sts5825.jpg

 

Another good launch right off the pad

sts5826.jpg

 

If all goes well, this is the last time we will have this view

sts5827.jpg

 

Jeb wants to know who mounted the MMU back to front, as if his job wasn't difficult enough already!

sts5828.jpg

 

With the final piece in place and commissioned, Jeb makes one last visual inspection to confirm all is well.

sts5829.jpg

 

Nearly home.  A big welcoming committee is expected for a job well done

sts5830.jpg

 

And we're home

sts5831.jpg

 

Bonus mission STS-8b.  As the station is now fully operational, it seems only right that we should take some crew up to man it.

sts5832.jpg

 

Yes the SSTO is docked, which gives an interesting comparison of the relative size of the two craft.

sts5833.jpg

 

The final approach for the final landing

sts5834.jpg

 

 

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49 minutes ago, funk said:

Finished STS-2T - RTLS... I've used the default launch configuration (fuel/thrust) plus a dummy payload of 18t.

Very nice :) For me its even more impressive than an interplanetary STS flight since I've tried it for myself and failed really hard xD

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20 hours ago, Alienwall said:

After the original Bubble Space Telescope fell from its rocket and shattered into pieces it was decided that Bob's hobby telescope should be outfitted and sent to space. Here's STS-3:

.....

ITS SO TINY. AND ADORABLE.AND CUTE. DID I MENTION IT WAS TINY?

Actually though, props to you for making a telescope that small and compact while (probably) fulfilling all the mission requirements. (mine always seem to tend towards the larger end of the scale.....)

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I'm happy to report that I have completed STS-3! My space telescope was deployed at 550 km, inclined approximately 25 degrees. I attached the solar panels to jr. docking ports and linked them up to the MMUs, then to the telescope. For the telescope, I just used to the new-ish infrared telescope.

I landed the shuttle back on the runway at the end. I don't have a screenshot of the F3 results as they were meaningless for some reason. Either switching between craft or quickloading made it start over.

0LCZ7zG.png

Mission slideshow here: https://imgur.com/a/z2PXTp4

It took a couple tries - I crashed the shuttle on the return once (or twice) and found that it was more difficult than I thought it would be to connect the parts in orbit. In the end, it worked great! 

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On 6/19/2018 at 12:07 PM, funk said:

Here is the obligatory STS-1T mission, which wasn't really a thing, cause the crafts had been tested and flown several times in previous versions of the challenge.

...and this is how a veteran pilot lands his shuttle :) You got the requirement just right, looking forward for the next one (which I saw on the next page, there is a buttload of entries again..... :) )

LOkYAUP.png?1

 

On 6/19/2018 at 3:30 PM, 4x4cheesecake said:

Actually, I did it twice but you already told me that support missions are just allowd if it is mentioned in the challenge description so I guess I'm not allowed to dock both orbiter to do the rescue (and more important: pump fuel from STS-4 to STS-4R), so I did it again without docking and some extra fuel for STS-4R^^

the docking would not be a problem, but the fuel transfer, I would object to ;)

But nevermind, you did it the proper way, and in a routinely looking manner, good job!

2LypmZP.jpg?1

On 6/20/2018 at 1:44 AM, Alienwall said:

After the original Bubble Space Telescope fell from its rocket and shattered into pieces it was decided that Bob's hobby telescope should be outfitted and sent to space. Here's STS-3:

An MK2 Hubble? I'm impressed :) And I'm really glad someone decided to take this small-sized approach, to balance the monstrosities the others are flying here :) Very good job, on this mission, and now comes the real question - will you manage to build an Mk2-sized station, or does the time for a bigger shuttle finally come? :) 

9E708Vn.jpg?1

 

(reviews of the next page coming soon)

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On 6/20/2018 at 5:03 AM, Kerbolitto said:

Hey, this is my attempt to the first part of the STS Challenge !

Welcome to the challenge!

Wow, that's an interesting LV configuration, I don't think we've seen another one like that :) Makes me wonder about abort procedures...... :D 

Anyway, a very well flown mission, and a pinpoint landing, too!

Here's your first badge, hopefully the first of many more:

QThe6Sf.jpg?1

Looking forward to seeing more!

 

21 hours ago, Scarecrow said:

A quick question before I carry on with my missions.  I am currently in the middle of mission STS 5-8, can you build me.  On the last flight I thought I would land on the Island runway just to vary things.  This decision was made while still in orbit, and not because I had overshot KSC, but then I wondered if this would count for the Commander badge?  As the island runway is a lot smaller than the KSC runway, in theory it is more difficult, but if it doesn't count then I have a game save at the point where I was about to do my de-orbit burn so I can redo my landing to land at KSC.

Yeah, reading the fine print on the bottom is very important, sometimes.... :) Island airfield is A-OK.

 

16 hours ago, Scarecrow said:

Mission report for mission STS-5-8.

Six perfectly executed shuttle/spaceplane missions to build and crew a spacestation - what's not to love here? :) Great job, and a mighty fine station design! Some of the reentry procedures must have been quite brutal though - in one screenshot is says the higheest G-load has been 63 gees, poor kerbals..... :)

Here's your badge, and it's time to go space potato hunting!

t3gSvqs.jpg?1

15 hours ago, funk said:

Finished STS-2T - RTLS... I've used the default launch configuration (fuel/thrust) plus a dummy payload of 18t.

Wow... You made the procedure look easy.... And it is not easy at all, which I learnt the hard way :) Very good job, your kerbals live to fly another day and the vehicle is safe.

And I really like your shuttle design - would you mind sharing the craft file, so I can examine how exactly it works and fly it a bit? :) 

Thanks, and here is your badge:

pfbRTpD.png?1

7 hours ago, doggonemess said:

I'm happy to report that I have completed STS-3! My space telescope was deployed at 550 km, inclined approximately 25 degrees. I attached the solar panels to jr. docking ports and linked them up to the MMUs, then to the telescope. For the telescope, I just used to the new-ish infrared telescope.

Good job!

Nice mission and telescope/MMU design, and a precise landing!

One detail though - could you please share a screenshot of the final telescope orbit for me to verify? And, in the future missions, could you add one or two screenshots of atmospheric reentry? This is often the tricky part :)

Thanks, and here's your badge:

9E708Vn.jpg?1

5 hours ago, zolotiyeruki said:

Here's my STS-1T.  Had to mess around with the CoL/CoG on the carrier aircraft by trial and error 'til I got it right, since I couldn't test it in isolation.

...and after several missions to space and back, the test proved that the orbiter can indeed fly and land.... :) Out of curiosity, is the cargo bay open on purpose, or did it happen by accident? :) 

Good job, and now to the more challenging test pilot missions!

LOkYAUP.png?1

 

I hope I did not miss anything,

Michal.don

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@michal.don Thanks for the missions, and the badges.  I will be calling a halt there, as I have never been a fan of tracking asteroids and always have them switched off, so Mission STS-9 is a non-starter.  The Mun and planet missions look interesting, but I am not sure my skill levels are up to completing them.  Maybe at some point I may try the Mun ones and see how I get on.

 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Scarecrow said:

Thanks for the missions, and the badges.  I will be calling a halt there, as I have never been a fan of tracking asteroids and always have them switched off, so Mission STS-9 is a non-starter.  The Mun and planet missions look interesting, but I am not sure my skill levels are up to completing them.  Maybe at some point I may try the Mun ones and see how I get on.

You're welcome - I hope you enjoyed flying them ;)

I wouldn't be too scared of going beyond LKO though. Some of the missions are not too difficult. Especially Duna STS-1 requires nothing but a bit more bang in your fuel tanks. And there are the "test pilot" missions, I think it's worth a shot, you might be pleasantly surprised ;) 

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5 hours ago, michal.don said:

One detail though - could you please share a screenshot of the final telescope orbit for me to verify? And, in the future missions, could you add one or two screenshots of atmospheric reentry? This is often the tricky part :)

I'll grab that screenshot for you.

And it's funny - I've had almost no problems with reentry. Is there something in the way I built the shuttle that makes it easier? Maybe I'm just an amazing genius engineer and should be working for NASA. Or maybe I just got really lucky. I'm better on the latter. 

EDIT: Here's the orbit.

76IPcJM.jpg

 

Edited by doggonemess
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6 hours ago, michal.don said:

...and after several missions to space and back, the test proved that the orbiter can indeed fly and land.... :) Out of curiosity, is the cargo bay open on purpose, or did it happen by accident? :) 

Good job, and now to the more challenging test pilot missions!

Thank you very much!  Yeah, landing the orbiter wasn't much of a problem. :) 

I did open the cargo bay doors on purpose, actually.  When I detached from the carrier aircraft, I was quite close to the KSC, so I dove pretty aggressively towards the runway.  The open doors ensured that I could still hit the runway at a reasonable speed after diving from 5km.

STS-2T should be interesting--the orbiter carries a LOT of fuel after achieving LKO, and burning that much LF with only LV-Ns before landing might be a bit challenging.  Of course, by now I have several iterations of my shuttle design to choose from...

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Took me a while to do STS-5-8 but I'm feeling pretty good while looking at the result:

fP1B58p.png

Lets take a look how this station was build:

(In this shortened version, I'll skip some repetitive parts of STS-6-8 but everything is documented in the linked imgur album)

STS-5
Core-Module (service module) of the station. Contains a full LFO tank, two Monoprop tanks, 8 RCS thruster, 2 reaction wheels and 2 probe cores.
 

Spoiler

JQHfE7u.png

Val on her first flight of the day:

Pp9HTsw.jpg

Launch as usual:

MvtxX4x.jpg

The station will be build in a 400km equatorial orbit:

zrKNo9g.jpg

circularization burn:

8TxQZEm.jpg

Release the Core Module:

zWtNXVx.jpg

And return to the KSC:

LchuYOP.jpg

eTkMrrp.jpg

4i2NL4I.jpg

Album for STS-5: https://imgur.com/a/86sdINw

 

STS-6
First Science-Module + 2 solar arrays to expand the core module + a tug to assist in assembly

Spoiler

xwibW2J.png

Setting up the rendevouz:

FdfEtwB.jpg

Fine tune the trajectory:

AwDOaPM.jpg

Rendevouz with the station core:

01bH20i.jpg

This is the tricky part. The solar arrays got just one docking port (to connect with the station core) and cannot perform any maneuvers for itself. But the station core got RCS, reaction wheels, probe cores and big batteries.

RVSJ3x8.jpg

Lets switch to the station core to perform the docking maneuver:

OKBrZ68.jpg

Took me quiet some time to dock both arrays:

vNapXUm.jpg

Release the science module (tug is docked already and will remain at the station):

ACwj4qB.jpg

Docked module and extented solar panels:

JMoKOnE.jpg

Return to the KSC:

D9C819k.jpg

DInmZLk.jpg

Album for STS-6: https://imgur.com/a/EUtNBwh

 

STS-7
Second Science-Module.

Spoiler

p9yQFxk.png

Lets jump directly to the rendevouz:

G8SpTkO.jpg

Grab the tug and park it above the orbiter:

fylAONo.jpg

Release the module:

5tEDwDL.jpg

Docked to the station as well:

thJ0c9n.jpg

And return to the KSC again:

y5P31jK.jpg

TBqUIGN.jpg

Album for STS-7: https://imgur.com/a/dSV9D4f

 

STS-8
Habitat module. Contains a small ISRU as well (hidden in an interstage fairing).

Spoiler

n17BxGz.png

Rendevouz with the station:

qLRJ2K5.jpg

The habitat module got its own RCS, no need for the tug this time:

PWT0hXd.jpg

Retracted the solar panels for safety reasons:

Z5UXcCG.jpg

Transfer some crew to the station:

8qgsNhV.jpg

Re-dock the tug to another port:

hYTifja.jpg

Doing science and stuff^^

FA8ayAs.jpg

And return again:

d6eE0hZ.jpg

P3ZnuUj.jpg

Final result:

fP1B58p.png

Album for STS-8: https://imgur.com/a/CiV5767

edit: don't know what i've done but this post is obviously not finished yet...still working on it :o Done^^
 

Edited by 4x4cheesecake
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10 hours ago, michal.don said:

And I really like your shuttle design - would you mind sharing the craft file, so I can examine how exactly it works and fly it a bit?

Yay, another batch! THX!

You've forced me to fix some minor design flaws today and it should've been tested more, but it's time to face the public now. I've recently uploaded it to kerbalx (s.sig.) Have fun!

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18 hours ago, doggonemess said:

And it's funny - I've had almost no problems with reentry. Is there something in the way I built the shuttle that makes it easier? Maybe I'm just an amazing genius engineer and should be working for NASA. Or maybe I just got really lucky. I'm better on the latter. 

EDIT: Here's the orbit.

Thanks for the screenshot, as expected, everything is in order ;)

I think the main advantage of your design are the large control surfaces/tail fins in the back of your vehicle - they add a lot of drag, which in this case is a good thing :)

 

16 hours ago, zolotiyeruki said:

I did open the cargo bay doors on purpose, actually.  When I detached from the carrier aircraft, I was quite close to the KSC, so I dove pretty aggressively towards the runway.

Cargo bay doubling as an airbrake, useful when not carrying expensive delicate payloads ;) 

 

16 hours ago, 4x4cheesecake said:

Took me a while to do STS-5-8 but I'm feeling pretty good while looking at the result:

I'd agree, this station is indeed a reason to feel good, probably proud, and maybe a little bit smug :D It's a really nice design, built in a well-managed series of mission!

Good job, here's your badge, and good luck in the next missions! This is where they start to be really interesting.

t3gSvqs.jpg?1

 

12 hours ago, funk said:

You've forced me to fix some minor design flaws today and it should've been tested more, but it's time to face the public now. I've recently uploaded it to kerbalx (s.sig.) Have fun!

"It's not a bug, it's a feature" :D

Thanks, I'll have a look at it when I have a bit of time!

 

Michal.don

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8 minutes ago, michal.don said:

good luck in the next missions! This is where they start to be really interesting.

Already done some testing for STS-9...it's incredible hard, at least if you try to catch an asteroid bigger than class A. I was able to perform an engine assisted landing with a 38t fake asteroid which is equivalent to a class B asteroid but I was not able to survive the reentry yet.
Well, at least there is no time limit so I can use the Mun to perform a really cheap plane change, even though I have to wait a year for the first encounter :D

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Oh, and also guys, I'm going on an adventure, and I don't.... a holiday for a week, so,

I won't be able to review any entries for the rest of June. 

So, please, stand by, fly some rockets for a while, and when I'm home again, we'll pick it up where we left ;) 

 

Michal.don

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On 6/21/2018 at 9:47 AM, michal.don said:

Welcome to the challenge!

Wow, that's an interesting LV configuration, I don't think we've seen another one like that :) Makes me wonder about abort procedures...... :D 

Anyway, a very well flown mission, and a pinpoint landing, too!

Here's your first badge, hopefully the first of many more:

QThe6Sf.jpg?1

Looking forward to seeing more!

 

Thanks a lot ! The kerbal-way is so much fun even if it looks extremely stupid at first glance :DI'm sure it is possible to scale up this design with more cargo bays or even a large fairing closed on an Sr. dock ! :D

Next step would be to find a way to land the second stage on its engine, with the shuttle acting as an arrow !

 

Edit : Abort procedures ? Just decouple that thing and full throttle away from space !

Edited by Kerbolitto
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Hey ! :)

 

This my attempt to STS 1b and 2a at the same time, with the glorious Artisan v2-2 going up there ! Or down, relative to its backward ascent ? Doesn't matter, nothing exploded and the requirements were fullfilled (kind of) !

 

49u35p.jpg

 

Loading :

Spoiler

q27wiy.jpg

72x72 Orbite with 2 stage design :

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xs1geg.jpg

Burn to 2863.33km, this craft laaaaacks TWR :

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du472q.jpg

Shaping things up, I forgot to take a screen of my Sat but they are really basic Okto + Oscar B, Ant, Relay dish and solar panels.

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g94723.jpg

Decoupling the 40t. fuel pod :

vzgnz8.jpg

Landing on a slope :

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Relays seen from the fuel pod :

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zl76hd.jpg

 

I did not try to land on the KSC coming this high because I have very low experience on precise re-entry when coming from this high.

Also I did not try to set a pinpoint orbit to release each sat at the same interval 'cause I'm not patient enough for that kind of things, I'm eyeballing too much stuff to do this :p

Edited by Kerbolitto
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21 hours ago, michal.don said:

Oh, and also guys, I'm going on an adventure, and I don't.... a holiday for a week, so,

I won't be able to review any entries for the rest of June. 

So, please, stand by, fly some rockets for a while, and when I'm home again, we'll pick it up where we left ;) 

 

Michal.don

Have a good holiday! I hope I'll have an actual entry for this by the time you get back :)

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