michal.don

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

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22 minutes ago, michal.don said:

STS-6T is officialy go,

Ouuuyeah!

So, with this mission focusing on the booster, I take it is combinable with any other mission but the STS-1T?

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5 hours ago, 4x4cheesecake said:

I already have two different ideas how to recover even the huge booster of my interplanetary shuttle....this will be fun :) Actually three ideas if refuelling and flying back the booster is a valid option :D

Well, I'm not going to ban anything, and feel free to show multiple methods ;) 

4 hours ago, Ozelui said:

So, with this mission focusing on the booster, I take it is combinable with any other mission but the STS-1T?

To be honest, I did not think of that... But I do not see any reason why not, you just need to complete the pre-requisite missions to get the badge :)

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53 minutes ago, michal.don said:

To be honest, I did not think of that... But I do not see any reason why not, you just need to complete the pre-requisite missions to get the badge :)

You're completely right!   I had my next launch in mind, and only considered the matter from a "mechanical" point of view. :D   Of course, the rest of the test missions should be required. 

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Funkyndustries is back in business! RL doesn't give me a lot of time for KSP, so I had to get rid of all unnecessary orbits and play-arounds for STS-5T. Straight to the Mun and back!

One question though: Are the test missions ment to be accomplished with the same craft? I'm asking because my Energija already has recoverable boosters and I'd just need to finish my catamaran for STS-6T to bring them back. The STS boosters aren't recoverable by design.

Edited by funk

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39 minutes ago, funk said:

Nice mission :) Is there some kind of a multi-docking port on top of the MK1-3 command module? Looks like a combination of the jr. and 'regular' sized clamp-o-tron.  

Also, which sunflare mod do you use? It looks amazing!

40 minutes ago, funk said:

Are the test missions ment to be accomplished with the same craft?

I used 3 different shuttles in the test missions so far and nobody cared so I guess it's fine to use multiple designs ;)

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2 minutes ago, 4x4cheesecake said:

Looks like a combination of the jr. and 'regular' sized clamp-o-tron.  

This! Just clipped into each other.

 

6 minutes ago, 4x4cheesecake said:

Also, which sunflare mod do you use? It looks amazing!

Sunflares of Maar - UrsaMinor. At least the gamedata folder says so. I copied it from my 1.4.3 install.

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15 hours ago, funk said:

Funkyndustries is back in business! RL doesn't give me a lot of time for KSP, so I had to get rid of all unnecessary orbits and play-arounds for STS-5T. Straight to the Mun and back!

That's an example of fine piloting skills, especially the very steep reentry and a precise landing. I'm curious though - did you nail in on your first try, or was some iterative trying needed to get the landing location right? :) In any case, great mission, and a well-deserved badge for you. Congratulations!

7zmbGnp.png?1

16 hours ago, funk said:

One question though: Are the test missions ment to be accomplished with the same craft?

No, you can design a new shuttle for every mission, if you'd like :) Or modify and existing one to suit the specific mission. No problem with that.

Michal.don

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9 hours ago, michal.don said:

That's an example of fine piloting skills, especially the very steep reentry and a precise landing. I'm curious though - did you nail in on your first try, or was some iterative trying needed to get the landing location right? :) In any case, great mission, and a well-deserved badge for you. Congratulations!

Thx for the batch. I did one  test flight mostly for testing the angle between launch site and mun. It was fine and I could have finished the mission, but at one point instead of activating the engine, apollo decided to decouple the service module.

For the landing itself it wasn't that hard to get it right. I knew that the time to periapsis at Kerbin has to be less than a multiple of six hours, when setting up the free return trajectory. The second correction was just eyeballing the time between PE and the position of KSC. In fact I overcorrected a little bit and the reentry was almost too short, imho slight overshoots are more forgiving.

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I can't come up with a name for my shuttle. Anybody got ideas? (See post on previous page for what the shuttle looks like.) If you make a name that I use, I'll give you a virtual cookie, and you can give me some dumb mission to do if you want. :D

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6 minutes ago, EdwardB3020 said:

Can I use mechjeb for docking my shuttles please? For this contest

Welcome to the challenge!

Sure, the rules state that only the atmospheric flight has to be done manually, MechJeb is fine for the orbital operations.

Looking forward to seeing your first entry,

Michal.don

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For STS-3 is there a downloadable telescope I should use or do I design my own?

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1 hour ago, JacobTheFoxx said:

For STS-3 is there a downloadable telescope I should use or do I design my own?

It's a DIY project, keep in mind that you transport the solar panels separate from the structure and attach them in space using a manned maneuvering unit (MMU) also of your own design

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49 minutes ago, hoioh said:

It's a DIY project, keep in mind that you transport the solar panels separate from the structure and attach them in space using a manned maneuvering unit (MMU) also of your own design

Thanks. My save has just corrupted its self, so it might be a while, as I've lost ALL of my crafts, so I must now re-make the shuttle.

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2 hours ago, JacobTheFoxx said:

Thanks. My save has just corrupted its self, so it might be a while, as I've lost ALL of my crafts, so I must now re-make the shuttle.

That should not be a neccessity, you can copy your craft files from the save folder over to a new save even after the actual save file has been corrupted

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10 hours ago, hoioh said:

That should not be a neccessity, you can copy your craft files from the save folder over to a new save even after the actual save file has been corrupted

Nope, when I went to the saves folder inside the save nothing was there. I don't know what happened. Luckily for the shuttle I have plenty of screenshots so I can re-build it. I just wont have any of my satellites anymore, or the Dres space station I was working on. But again, I have screenshots and video, so I can re-build and use hyperedit.

Edited by JacobTheFoxx

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18 hours ago, JacobTheFoxx said:

For STS-3 is there a downloadable telescope I should use or do I design my own?

As @hoioh said, there used to be a "standard" telescope for download, but no more - the payload design is a part of this challenge now. Read the requirements for orbital assembly carefully ;)

Michal.don

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Its been hard coming back to this game, but I've finally designed a shiny Skylab space-station and I'll try to fly both missions those days .. :) Also I did not notice the new SRB recovery challenge, I think it's a very good idea ! :D

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I've been busy running my own challenge, and family stuff. But I'm still in the shuttle program, it's just been delayed a bit. :P

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I need to do something about my launch vehicle. I've had to adjust the engine angles for each mission to keep the torque under control, and it's gotten tedious. I thought I had it right for STS-3, but I can't seem to get it after a half-dozen launch attempts - the shuttle keeps tumbling at high altitude as the booster fuel runs low.

I've been playing with the Throttle Controlled Avionics mod, but it's pretty complicated. I also experimented with putting an S-shaped adapter to move the engines more towards the centerline and reduce the thrust offset angle, but that looked ridiculous. I think I'm gonna switch to a symmetrical layout.

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8 hours ago, sturmhauke said:

I need to do something about my launch vehicle. I've had to adjust the engine angles for each mission to keep the torque under control, and it's gotten tedious. I thought I had it right for STS-3, but I can't seem to get it after a half-dozen launch attempts - the shuttle keeps tumbling at high altitude as the booster fuel runs low.

I had the same issue on my first shuttle...it's pretty annoying and a new launch vehicle should be a better solution than using mods or try some fine tuning.

Do you use RCS Build Aid? It's really helpful to display CoM, avarage CoM and dry CoM at the same time so you can already see in the editor how the shuttle will behave during different states of the flight. Even though the name of the mod suggest some help for RCS, it also displays helpful informations for engines / thrust vectors, parachutes and even allows you gimbal the engines.

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1 hour ago, 4x4cheesecake said:

Do you use RCS Build Aid? It's really helpful to display CoM, avarage CoM and dry CoM at the same time so you can already see in the editor how the shuttle will behave during different states of the flight. Even though the name of the mod suggest some help for RCS, it also displays helpful informations for engines / thrust vectors, parachutes and even allows you gimbal the engines.

Yeah, if it weren't for that mod my shuttle would just crash straight into the VAB or the ocean immediately after launch. The problem is that with a Buran-Energia arrangement, the thrust vector is way off-axis. I can post some pics later, but for now I'll try to demonstrate with super advanced text layout.

With an American shuttle layout, it looks something like this:

(wCoM)---(aCom)---(dCoM)---(main engines)--->(thrust vector)

The engines might not be precisely on the same line as the CoM as it moves, but it's relatively close - at least close enough for gimbal to compensate without too much trouble.

Buran-Energia looks more like this (angle is exaggerated):

(wCoM)---(aCom)---(dCoM)

           \
            \
             \
        (main engines)
               \
                \
                 \|
                 -|
           (thrust vector)

No matter how you adjust the engine angles, there will be huge torque at some portion of the flight. Maybe if I had engines with like 25 degrees of gimbal or something outrageous like that it would be more manageable, or if I could figure out that TCA mod. My understanding is that the real Energia had advanced avionics that the mod is meant to emulate.

Like I said, I've had to adjust the engine angles for each mission. They're in clusters of 4, with one main cluster and 4 booster clusters, for a total of 20 engines. The main cluster is optimized to minimize torque for aCom to dCom, post-booster separation. Meanwhile the booster engines are optimized to minimize torque for wCom to aCom, pre-separation. I can do it, but it's annoying.

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@sturmhauke Nice drawings! :) 

Yeah, the Y-Axis offset is a huge problem, also on an american style shuttle (probably still smaller than on a buran):

Qyve59e.png

On the bright side: A heavy payload will reduce the offset (this one is empty)^^

TCA looks promising but also pretty complicated on the first sight. Unfortunately, the thread doesn't seems to be supported very well, maybe some other shuttle pilots got some experience with the mod and can explain it a bit.

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So there is no new flight report in almost 2 weeks? Let's change that and fire up the engines again!

 

STS - 5T

JdkWD9q.jpg

Had quiet some fun during the mission and to increase the difficutly a bit, I chose not to perform a single correction burn so I had to plan my arrival together with the transfer burn. I've tried this in a few testflights and had no problems at all but during the actual mission, somehow I missed the KSC "slightly" *couch*. Fortunately, we are allowd to land at other locations as well ;)

Spoiler

Lift-off!
fhlIXS3.jpg

Booster separation
ElIbTIB.jpg

Ditching the ET
OQVuprY.jpg

A Kerbin day is 6h so Kerbin rotates 60° each hour. I'm going to return after 2d:2h:43m so I should place the Pe of the patched cone ~160° in front of the actual KSC position. During a confused moment, I though: 'That's almost 3h or half a Kerbin day'....so I drew an imaginary line from the KSC through the center of Kerbin, and placed the Pe half the way above the surface of Kerbin (90° instead of 160°) :confused::confused:
HmHHXHO.jpg

The little 'loop' around the Mun
7Jy6NqV.jpg

After arriving at the Mun, I can deploy the Apollo-like spacecrafty8GRLsr.jpg

Circulize around the Mun
NiniUAI.jpg

Perform a smooth landing
PzBExoA.jpg

A little spacewalk
8gqX0ct.jpg

As soon as the Command Module crosses the landing site, we can relaunch into orbit
f2Sslbo.jpg

One of my best launch into rendevouz I've ever done :)
Jd3XWw4.jpg

Docking the LEM back to the Command Module
hw5sFGX.jpg

Let's fly back
EeZscx5.jpg

Well, the orbiter will arrive at Kerbin first. In this moment, I realised my mistake during the planning but fortunately, the Dessert Airfield is in range. This requires a small inclination change though but that's doable during reentry
4LsJaqm.jpg

I never landed there before, this will be interesting
cR5rwSO.jpg

Some curves to align with the runway
91pKndq.jpg

The orbiter is safe back at Kerbin :)
HoMV8m3.jpg

Still have to land the Command Module but that's easy ;) Getting rid of the no longer necessary stuff...
Uvc20hJ.jpg

...and after a quick fiery ride through the atmosphere...
Ub6TU7C.jpg

...these Kerbals are safe back at Kerbin as well :)
KNye4kg.jpg

Full album: https://imgur.com/a/cgDaCCH

 

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Let's hope everything is fine with STS - 5T because here is already:


STS - 6T

OqWtnIR.jpg?1


Pretty tough mission though, but also really funny :) I had several ideas how to recover the booster but unfotunately I was just able to get one of them working. Beside the one method shown in this mission, I also had some promising tries when I refueled the booster to fly it back to the KSC...but it is really, really hard to keep it stable during the landing. Maybe I'll try it again as soon as I've finished every other mission ;)

Spoiler

For this mission, I'm using the same Shuttle as for Duna STS - 3 (even with the same payload) but with some chutes added to the boosters:
IzRjBIv.jpg

Booster separation. The chutes are already armed since there is no probecore on them:
wRJMldb.jpg

42 chutes are required to slow down the boosters. Also, the booster need to touch down in a tilted position to keep the chutes open while it tips over into the water:
1gextdu.jpg

The second booster 'forgot' to tip over and will keep this position until the focus is switched xD
XAl7U9U.png

The *amazing* 'Recovery One' will start its mission at sunrise:
SNPxETB.png

Splashing into the ocean:
eARW7R2.png

Enjoyed the IVA view on the way very much^^
zIbnTBK.jpg

*Just* 2 hours later, the ship will arrive at the booster:
vzsTBPR.png

Some Vernor engines and reversing thrust allows the ship to align with the booster and pick it up carefully:
Ac124tk.png

I want to point out, that the booster is still floating in the water and just pushed forward by the backplate. There is no physical connection between the booster and the ship:
s0lTV9v.png

A nice solar eclipse on the way back home:
wlIuvcQ.png

I skipped one night and after a few more hours, Recovery One arrives back at the shores of the KSC:
B7VaL8p.png

The booster is recovered successful :)
dnVv308.png

Full album: https://imgur.com/a/CdmLu3Y

Unfortunately, my plan to save the orbiter by using FMRS didn't work very well...everytime I switched back to booster separation, one of the boosters 'sticked' on the orbiter like it wasn't decoupled properly (also, ther is a very strange fuel-flow behaviour if one of the booster is used as root part) :( No Kerbal was harmed during the mission anyway since the orbiter was controled by a probe ;)

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