sevenperforce

Every Launch. Real time.

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So, I had an idea.

Why not create a save in which I could replicate every single real-world launch, on the day it happens?

The only mod I'll be using is Tweakscale. As I play, I'll be saving each part I build as a subassembly, so I can quickly replicate any launch vehicle in any configuration. Thus, most of the building time will be payload-oriented.

Running list of launches:

  1. March 1, 2018: GOES-S, launched on a ULA Atlas V in 541 configuration.
  2. March 5, 2018: Hispasat-30W6, launched on an expendable Falcon 9.
  3. March 9, 2018: O3b, launched on a Soyuz-FG.
  4. ISS (not launched; just built in the SPH and dropped into orbit).
  5. March 21, 2018: ISS Expedition 56, launched on Soyuz.
  6. March 23, 2018: ISS Expedition 56 Rendezvous & Docking.
  7. March 29, 2018: GSAT 6A, launched on ISRO's GSLV Mk2.
  8. March 29, 2018: Russian Experimental Imaging Satellite, launched on Soyuz 2-1v.
  9. March 29, 2018: Chinese Beidou-3/4, launched on Long March 3B.
  10. March 30, 2018: Iridium-NEXT 5, launched on SpaceX Falcon 9.
  11. April 2, 2018: CRS-14, COTS with Dragon 1 launched on SpaceX Falcon 9.
  12. April 4, 2018: CRS-14 Rendezvous & Berthing.
  13. April 5, 2018: DSN-1/Superbird-8 + HYLAS-4, launched on Ariane 5 ECA.
  14. April 11, 2018: IRNSS-1I, launched on ISRO's PSLV-XL.
  15. April 14, 2018: AFSPC-11, launched on ULA's Atlas V in 551 configuration.
  16. April 18, 2018: Blagovest-12L, launched on Proton-M.
  17. April 18, 2018: TESS, launched on the last SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 4.
  18. April 25, 2018: Sentinel 3B, launched on Rockot.
  19. May 3, 2018: Apstar-6A, launched on Long March 3B.
  20. May 5, 2018: InSight, launched on Atlas V 401.
  21. May 5, 2018: CRS-14 Return.
Edited by sevenperforce
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Stock, or RO? Because if it's the latter there are lots and lots of replica LVs around that you can use.

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4 minutes ago, IncongruousGoat said:

Stock, or RO? Because if it's the latter there are lots and lots of replica LVs around that you can use.

Stock. Part of the challenge, for me, is replicating each LV using only the parts in stock plus Tweakscale.

I have a fully-stock Dragon 2 + Falcon 9 that doesn't even require Tweakscale, but I will definitely be using Tweakscale for anything with SRBs because the stock ones are so small.

Plus, playing stock lets me sandbag and spend extra dry mass getting each stage perfect.

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GOES-S, United Launch Alliance.

First launch of the campaign!

Spoiler

Getting these payloads to look right is tricky, since stock has so few instruments. But I did a pretty decent job.

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Propulsion unit includes a pair of monoprop thrusters, a scaled-down bipropellant engine, and a couple of scaled-down ion thrusters. I thought about making the LM propulsion bus a subassembly, but decided against it.

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Going in to get my upper stage...you can see that I have subassembly folders for upper stages, first stages, and parallel boosters.

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Here's the Centaur SEC.

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Engine area detail. The paired linear thrusters are only for ullage and they are the only monoprop thrusters enabled for translation; the four quad thrusters are for attitude only.

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Time to go grab a common-core booster!

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Here she is. Getting the sizing right required some clipping, and each tank is only half full, but it works. Two tweakscaled mainsails inside a few structural parts for the RL-180.

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This is a 541 so I need a five-meter fairing encapsulating the whole Centaur.

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There we go!

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I've built two solid booster subassemblies. Since you can't do angled nozzles in stock, I've clipped Thuds inside the solid boosters at the base and angled them such that their thrust, combined with the booster, thrust, goes through the COM. The AJ-60As have the Thuds' gimbal locked; the GEM-60s are slightly bigger and have gimbal unlocked for TVC.

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Asymmetry? No problem!

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And here we are, on the launch pad. To quote Tory Bruno, "The mighty Atlas V is champing at the bit!"

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3, 2, 1...main engine start!

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Booster ignition and clamp release! Note the plumes from the Thuds, barely visible. 

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Off she roars.

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The asymmetric thrust vectors did induce a nasty bit of roll, but no matter.

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Looks a LOT like the real thing.

And booster burnout!

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The RD-180 powers on.

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MECO and staging! Unfortunately stock fairings don't clamshell off well.

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Centaur away.

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A rather lofted trajectory since this is the Centaur SEC.

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Burning toward orbit.

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Almost to orbit...

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Here we go! RL-10 shutdown, and coast period.

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Setting up a maneuver node during my coast. Using the Mun as a target for inclination check.

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Coast period over, our attitude thrusters reorient...

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Ullage burn...

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RL-10 reignition!

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Nearing KTO.

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KTO achieved!

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Payload separation, aided by a burst of monoprop.

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Attitude thrusters reorient the Centaur for a deorbit burn.

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Burning radial-out to lower periapsis.

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This should be enough.

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GOES-S is all set.

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Getting those panels out.

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Circularization and inclination correction node.

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Here's the circ burn!

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Another view.

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Almost done...

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That should just about do it.

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Apoapsis is where I want it.

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And now periapsis is too!

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Mission: success!

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Now to make sure Centaur deorbits properly...

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Initial heating...

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Kaboom!

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Mission complete.

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Edited by sevenperforce
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I like it. I've thought about doing something like this.

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Does anyone know how many pyrotechnic bolts the Delta IV common booster core uses for stage separation?

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 The RSP already does this but it is more fictional missions of our own desing compared to real life missions and we do it in RSS/RO with a full mission control team over discord come and have a look. Not that this isnt cool either. 

 

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21 hours ago, sevenperforce said:

The RL-180 powers on.

Like @Uace24 said nice  mission report so far, nothing minor to correct here but its an RD-180 not an RL-180 for future reference:

RL is an american designation

RD is a Russian/Soviet designation

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5 minutes ago, kerbinorbiter said:

Like @Uace24 said nice  mission report so far, nothing minor to correct here but its an RD-180 not an RL-180 for future reference:

RL is an american designation

RD is a Russian/Soviet designation

Fixed it, thanks!

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Hispasat 30W-6, SpaceX.

This mission was originally intended to test SpaceX's hardest landing attempt to date, and was outfitted with titanium grid fins. However, rough seas precluded OCISLY from sailing out to the recovery point, so it was changed to an expendable launch. I flew the launch expendable, but as it turns out, the stage still has recovery hardware, which makes this inaccurate. Oh well!

Spoiler

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Edited by sevenperforce
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Neat. What I'm really looking forward to is the INSIGHT mission.

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O3b, Arianespace with Soyuz-FG

Spoiler

First, the payload:

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Now the Fregat upper stage:

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Payload fairing and second stage:

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Now to get that core booster.

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Core booster in all its glory....

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And here are the four side boosters! The Soyuz side boosters vent the upper LOX tank at separation to kick the booster noses away from the core, producing the famous Korolev Cross. I can't vent stages, of course, so I tucked a monoprop tank and a monoprop thruster in at the tip to do the job.

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Detail view of the base.

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Here's the whole thing!

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And, finally, cantilever suspension arms.

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Time for launch!

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Ignition and launch:

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Initial ascent:

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Here's that Korolev Cross!

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Core burnout.

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Hot staging...

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And explosive decoupling!

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I know that the fairing separation came before upper stage ignition, but who oh well.

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Solid motors fire to pull the upper stage away from the Fregat.

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Fregat ignition!

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Did a few periapsis kicks to get my apogee up to where I wanted it, then decoupled the satellites:

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Array deployment and payload engine start go easy enough.

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My Fregat was bingo on fuel, so I used its residual RCS to deorbit it.

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Finally, all four satellites circularize:

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Edited by sevenperforce
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Wow, you sure went the extra mile on the launch clamps 

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3 minutes ago, roboslacker said:

Wow, you sure went the extra mile on the launch clamps 

I've always loved the way the Soyuz launch looks. Originally I was going to have them open up with Separatrons but a counterweight was just as easy.

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ISS

There is a crewed Soyuz launch coming up at the end of this month, and...well, they need somewhere to go, don't they?

Obviously I didn't replicate every launch individually, but I did build the ISS in its current configuration and drop it into orbit in one shot.

Spoiler

Here it is in orbit:

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The whole thing in all its glory.

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I created Kerbals with the names of the people currently in the ship.

Detail views of the Russian side.

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Leonardo Module and Bigelow Expandable Activity Module:

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Views of the US side:

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I still need to add the Progress and Soyuz capsules currently docked, but that's a job for another time.

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Are you going to include DLC parts, or are you staying stock for the challenge?  

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7 minutes ago, DAL59 said:

Are you going to include DLC parts, or are you staying stock for the challenge?  

It is very, very tempting to include at least the DLC capsule for the Soyuz spacecraft. But my stock Soyuz is not too bad. So I will probably stick with stock, except perhaps for a few of the payloads themselves.

Tweakscale is not fully functional with 1.4 yet, which sucks.

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@sevenperforce, I know this is stock parts, but I strongly recommend the nonpart mod FMRS, so you can do F9 booster recoveries.  

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2 hours ago, DAL59 said:

@sevenperforce, I know this is stock parts, but I strongly recommend the nonpart mod FMRS, so you can do F9 booster recoveries.  

As I've proven several times, I have no trouble pulling off F9 recoveries without the need for FMRS. :cool:

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ISS Expedition 56

This should be launching later today, so out ahead....

Spoiler

Didn't end up using DLC parts for my Soyuz capsule because I built it right before the DLC came out.

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Upper stage and core.

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I think these look better than the ones in the DLC, honestly.

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Cantilever arms...

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Made the crew for the expedition!

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I'm not so great at lining up inclination-matching.

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Ready for launch! FWIW, I did test the LAS on this, pretty extensively. It works well.

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Ignition, and...

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Liftoff!

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I need to rework my side boosters because they always seem to roll heavily.

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Pretty decent heading.

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Approaching booster burnout.

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So far so good.

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Aaaand...

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There go the side boosters.

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Korolev cross FTW!

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There's that nasty roll again.

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Onward and upward.

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Adjusting heading to zero out my inclination change.

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Blowing the fairings and the LAS.

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Not too bad of a replica, really.

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Very nice inclination matching now.

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If I'm not careful I will make orbit on Stage II alone.

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"Hot" staging:

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Hot indeed!

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Circularization is quick. This stage is really overpowered.

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And we made it!

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Typically, you'd only have one burn on Soyuz Stage III and you'd jettison before extending the solar array, but I'm not too worried about that here. I'm more worried about not having enough dV for rendezvous and deorbit on my Soyuz spacecraft, so I will go ahead and do most of the rendezvous with Stage III.

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Setting up...

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Unrealistic, you say?

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This should do it.

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Jettison! 

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I think I forgot to stage my separation motors properly.

Opening the cover on the main engine.

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Time to head for rendezvous and docking!

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I just want to wish you good luck.  We're all counting on you...

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ISS Expedition 56 Docking

This is a short one!

Spoiler

Where we left off...

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It will take a couple of orbits to close.

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Eight small biprop thrusters, a tweakscaled Poodle, and an assortment of Vernors, all keyed to provide only the correct impulse.

First rendezvous set up.

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Killed velocity, closing.

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Now this is the kind of intercept I love to see. Equidistant around the periapsis.

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Station coming into view. Not shy about using full throttle...in real life they would be a bit more circumspect.

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The zenith Russian docking module is Poisk, shown here. Pirs is below, on the nadir...though I think I should have another Soyuz there already.

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Money shot!

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Antefinal approach.

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Lining up. I've found that docking with stations works best when you line it up radially.

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Closer....

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Closer still...

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Final approach.

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Docked!

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Here she is.

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Moving Oleg to the Russian side....

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And the Americans to their side.

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That's all, folks!

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