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Welcome to the development thread for Duna Direct!





What is it?

Extraplanetary lander, habitat and parts pack for Kerbal Space Program - Based on the proposal for Mars Direct by Robert Zubrin and David Baker of Martin Marietta in 1990.


Fly the mission!

Live the adventure in the custom-made mission Duna Direct: The First Flight!



Flight plan:

Launch inside 5m expanded fairing
Aim for Duna
Aerobreaking entry at Duna
Heatshield jettison and parachute deployment
Landing gear deployment and reverse thrust
Perform science!
Built-in Sabatier conversion regenerates fuel for return
Repack parachute
Launch for Kerbin
Jettison first stage
Atmospheric re-entry at Kerbin
Parachute deployment and landing

Flight crew:

Pilot for vessel control
Engineer for repacking parachutes
Two scientists for running the science lab


Use of mods requires Module Manager

Compatible with the following mods (automatically applied upon mod detection):

Module Manager (Required for any other mod compatibility)
Near Future Props - Fully furnished interior
RCS FX - RCS Flame FX by JadeOfMaar auto-on if Module Manager is present. (Remove patch if dislike) (Special thanks @JadeOfMaar!)
Tweakscale - Scaling of all parts
B9 Part Switch - Texture swapping on Stage 2
Real Plume - Better engine FX for all engines
Breaking Ground (Squad) - Inventory space
Near Future Electrical - RTG Decay (thanks @Gordon Dry!)
Connected Living Space - Adds passable options
Kerbal Inventory System - Adds KIS inventory space
RealChute - Changes parachute parameters
USI Life Support - Various USI Life Support compatibilities
TAC Life Support - Various TAC Life Support compatibilities
Kerbalism - Full Kerbalism compatibilities (Special thanks @Sir Mortimer!)
Snacks! - Various Snacks! compatibilities
Remote Tech - Antenna modifications

Confirmed working with the addition of:
Cryo Tanks
Community Resource Pack


1.10.1 Update Changelog:



Recompile for KSP 1.10.1
All engines mass / thrust balanced (Thanks JadeOfMaar)
Fixed Small-scale Agency logo not loading
Fixed normal map on Stage 2 Engines

1.8.x Update Changelog:


1.8.1 / New Unity

Update and move all parts from Blender 2.7 .blend to Blender 2.8 .fbx 
Import new .fbx files and re-compile all parts for new Unity and KSP 1.8.1
All parts that were using "mesh =" now using "model ="
Adjusted base Tweakscale values
Eliminated B9+Cryotanks+CommunityResourcePack+DunaDirect incompatibility by doing the following:
- Added two resource definitions for DDCarbonDioxide and DDLqdHydrogen
- Mimicked Community Resource Pack definitions for Carbon Dioxide and Liquid Hydrogen
- ISRU now references DDCarbonDioxide and DDLqdHydrogen
- Community Resource Pack no longer required for ISRU functionality

Stage 1:
Patch to add 9x inventory space if Breaking Ground expansion is present
Deepened the hole for Stage 2
Fixed scaling issue with Stage 1 Engines (Thanks @JadeOfMaar)
Combined the 3x light modules on Stage 1 into 1x light module
Lowered default starting fuel for Stage 1 (create more using ISRU after landing)
Lowered fuel amounts

Stage 1 Engines:
Lowered thrust values - engines
Increased fuel + oxidizer intake ratios
Engines now use ModuleEnginesFX
Stock and Real Plume FX now move with engine gimbals

Stage 2 Engines:
Lowered thrust values
Increased fuel + oxidizer intake ratios
Lowered max temp
Removed fairing jettison module as there is no fairing to jettison
Engines now user ModuleEnginesFX
Stock and Real Plume FX now move with engine gimbals

Stage 2:
B9 part switch compatibility patch for Return Vehicle (Stage 2) along with 4x textures to choose from:
- Original texture
- Original texture-styled deep-space version
- New re-textured, original-style
- New re-textured, original-style, deep-space version
Added RTG decay when Near Future Electrical is installed (Thanks @Gordon Dry)
Adjusted center of mass / lift (Thanks @Jso)
Updated Kerbalism configs including science experiments takeover (Thanks @Sir Mortimer)
Replaced science experiments with custom experiments
Lowered fuel amounts

Docking Port:
Renamed toggle name to Toggle Nosecone from Toggle Transform (Thanks @Mecripp)
Lowered ablator values



This mod has not been tested with anything other than those listed above or in versions of KSP other than 1.5.1. There is also a lot going on with these parts. Testers have been awesome and I've done everything I can to make it work properly but as usual, if there are any bugs please report them over in the development thread. Thank you! 


Parts list with 1.8 updates:


Weaver Habitat - Habitat for planetary surface operations. Science lab, cargo bay, spotlights, IVA, RTG, science experiments, side ladder colliders, RTG.
Tharsis Boots - Landing legs for the habitat unit. On placement, habitat is bi-symmetrical and not 4x.
Boreum Sandbags - Sandbags for radiation protection. (Radiation only present with Kerbalism mod - Thanks @Sir Mortimer)
Schiaparelli Steps - Deployable ramp and ladder for getting to and from the habitat's airlock from the ground.
Hellas Engines - The retro-firing engines for landing of the habitat unit
Arrakis Interface Antenna - Antenna for the habitat unit to provide communications functions
Olympus Mons Heatshield - Heatshield for the habitat unit. Similar to the Svalin heatshield, but with less space constraints.
Gale RCS Thrusters - RCS thrusters for the habitat unit.
Samara Nosecone - The original nosecone for the Kerbin Return Vehicle, without a docking port or opening lid, but still containing parachutes.

Zubrin Command Pod - Kerbin return vehicle. 20x built-in RCS ports, science lab, science experiments, SAS module, IVA, RTG, lights.
Baker 1st Stage - The large first stage houses a cargo bay and four inset landing legs. Contains bay light and exterior spotlights.
Rudaux Nosecone - Animated nosecone opens to reveal docking port and parachutes. Has ablative shielding for atmospheric entry or re-entry protection.
Marietta Engines - A pair of these engines power the Kerbin Return Vehicle. Very high efficiency. Animated gimbals and emissives.
MIRA LM-20 Engines - Four sets of four advanced MIRA engines power the landing and ascent of the Duna Direct vehicle. Animated gimbals and emissives.
Acidalia Huggers - These collapsible landing legs are a staple design element of the vehicle.
Svalinn Heatshield - Expanding heatshield designed for atmospheric entry and aerobraking. Contains solar panels for extra power generation in flight. Contains 
Elysium Space Stairs - The trusty ladder to climb or descend to and from the Kerbin Return Vehicle while landed.
Alba Mons Talking Stick - Expanding radio antenna which mounts on the front of the Kerbin Return Vehicle.
Duna Direct Flag - Agency flag / decal


A very special thank you to all the testers who added valuable feedback and suggestions which led to many improvements over the original goal.


Download from Spacedock




Extract the contents of the GameData folder to your GameData folder. Structure should then read GameData\MarsDirect\

Mission is also available from the Steam Workshop



Duna Direct is License CC-BY-4.0

Edited by bcink
1.10.x Update
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Heck yeah.  I've always tried to recreate Mars Direct missions with various different parts. Never could get it to feel right though.  I even attempted to learn how to use Blender so I could try to make it myself.  Any way, I hope that you stick with it and good luck!  BTW, any plans to make the Hab as well?  

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37 minutes ago, Redleg1 said:

Any way, I hope that you stick with it and good luck!  BTW, any plans to make the Hab as well?  

Thanks - I will certainly try and stick it out. Debating on the hab, but not decided for or against yet. I would really want a giant tether and a rocket tank on the other end with the two slowly spinning around but I might settle for just the building. 

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On ‎8‎/‎27‎/‎2018 at 10:03 PM, hieywiey said:

Are you going to do the artificial gravity tether?

Really not sure how I would pull this one off?

On ‎8‎/‎28‎/‎2018 at 5:07 AM, JH4C said:

That lander foot animation is hypnotic. Lovely-looking piece of kit, well done.

Thanks :D



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17 hours ago, bcink said:

Really not sure how I would pull this one off?

It could probably be an animation that gives the illusion of there being a real tether and just have the player spin up the spacecraft. Alternatively, KAS' winches could be used, but I don't think that plays well with time warp.

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Everything so far has been UV unwrapped, but the landing legs don't work with this the way they are so I really have to go back to the drawing board or something with them.


1st Stage:


UV Unwrap




1st Stage Engines:


UV Unwrap




2nd Stage:


UV Unwrap




2nd Stage Interior


UV Unwrap




2nd Stage Engines


UV Unwrap


Unity Game


Modeling - Unknown pending landing legs re-work

UV Unwrap





Modeling - Partial

UV Unwrap




Docking Port / Parachutes


UV Unwrap




Landing Legs

Modeling - Depends on re-work

UV Unwrap





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16 hours ago, Redleg1 said:

What size are you making the stages?

I started with the top, at 2.5 and modeled the rest to scale from that. It looks like the bottom is a bit smaller than 5 and with the heatshield probably 5. Anything else and it doesn't look right. We'll see if any adjustments will need to be made...

On ‎8‎/‎30‎/‎2018 at 9:15 PM, Redleg1 said:

Now they just need some solar panels on them!

Valid. Not much room to fit them in but they now exist:


Heatshield has been cut up some to fit the landing gear and the 1st stage has been cut up to fit them in. Landing gear animation has been edited to squeeze them in.


Complicated puzzle game.


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On ‎9‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 3:16 PM, Redleg1 said:

Looks awesome. And now you just need to figure out how to make a cargo bay and ramp to unload the exploration rovers and the nuclear power generator rover!

It's happening.



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On ‎9‎/‎6‎/‎2018 at 10:17 PM, Lo Var Lachland said:

Wow! Amazing animations and parts! I will keep a close eye on this, definitely an interesting thread. 


I'll be doing textures last so I've started getting things in game. The last time I did legs it took forever and there were lots of problems. This time one day...


Stage 1 is good to go. There are 10 attachment nodes... 4x legs, 4x engines and top and bottom... and the rover is a static animation.


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On ‎9‎/‎9‎/‎2018 at 10:24 PM, Mecripp said:

That is looking great :)

Thanks :}

On ‎9‎/‎10‎/‎2018 at 6:20 AM, JH4C said:

I love coming here & watching the updates. The bounce in those lander legs is a joy to behold, and I just want to pick up the rover and give it cuddles and feed it 6502 processors as snacks...


As anticipated, slightly larger than 5m:  (again mind the lack of textures at this time)


There was some wonkiness with the solar panels so I moved them. Sorry for garbage gif quality



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19 hours ago, dboi88 said:

The animations are looking sweeeeet! :D


The opening/closing nosecone / parachutes / docking port just finished all testing and is good to go :)

Antenna in-game + stage 2 attach point is complete.

Heatshield re-entry test a success.

IVA is basically modeled. Need to revise and finish. 

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