Superfluous J

Kerpollo - A Complete Science Mode Run In 9 Acts

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@jost

No, just a mission to some worlds, including a frickin Sungrazer that has 1.7 Gees and also comparably hard to that infamous Ernus, yet i still dig as much Science as possible.

I made Albums for both extensions.

If Moho is too much 4 u guys, don't even think about that Sungrazer.

Edited by GRS

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50 minutes ago, jost said:

Where do I get the worlds?

Tekcate is a released Mod, the Sungrazer and other new worlds are my own, and still unreleased.

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@GRS, no updates from me, the remainder of this challenge is beyond the combination of my skills and how much time / effort I'm willing to invest in it.

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@FloppyRocket

Ok, i suggest you start training by going to any of Jool's Moons and back, try going with Pol and Bop and Vall in a single launch.

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On 10/1/2019 at 3:45 PM, GRS said:

@FloppyRocket

Ok, i suggest you start training by going to any of Jool's Moons and back, try going with Pol and Bop and Vall in a single launch.

Thanks for the suggestion. 

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14 minutes ago, FloppyRocket said:

Thanks for the suggestion. 

No probs, also...see it as something possible and in your reach, then i believe...you CAN do it...

@5thHorseman

Now you can like the Arkollo and Tekcollo, and some more...

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Well, this made me feel like I suck at Kerbal.

I opted for normal difficulty for sliders and percentages, but turned on "features" like Kerbal experience and part pressure limits. I'm also adding the informal rule that after the initial "photo op", KSC science is only for getting that bit extra to unlock a node I can nearly get. No large-scale grubbing around for science points on the ground.

The challenge starts with Chocobo, which is just a pod with some goo.

48926331927_291037cc6c_o.pngChocobo by cantab314, on Flickr

That got me the first two tech tree unlocks. Next up is Kjata, my Kerbin orbiter, and dang this gave me trouble. I went through five design iterations and even more launch attempts. I wanted to use the Soyuz pod because I was concerned about re-entry heating, but it was just hopeless aerodynamically, so I switched to the classic Mercury pod. As a stack of small tanks with no struts or autostruts, the rocket flexes and wobbles and control is a nightmare. In the end I decided to pitch over a bit then turn SAS off and let it more or less turn itself. Kjata was able to limp into an elliptical polar orbit, getting EVA reports of all biomes and also high space, before Jeb had to get out and push to deorbit. And let me tell you, pushing a capsule that has no SAS isn't easy! Eventually I found it was stable to push at an extremely unlikely angle. Because I didn't have enough electricity to transmit and didn't land the Goo containers, I missed out on some potential science, nonetheless after the mission I have all the 45 point nodes except Aviation.

48926137196_f3a73db12b_o.pngKjata by cantab314, on Flickr

48926333272_08e7a04691_o.pngPushing to deorbit by cantab314, on Flickr

Challenge album: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmHNUQCF

(I'm kind of short on screenshots showing info like the orbital parameters. I've been convinced for years KSP doesn't always take the screenshot when I hit F1, but maybe I'm just forgetting to take them.)

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Yes...new contender...

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On 12/30/2018 at 9:22 AM, 5thHorseman said:

Note: If your return vehicle splits up into different pods that's okay, so long as they all land in the same biome.

Can I break this rule as long as I don't take ground science from the multiple Kerbin landing biomes? It's just my Munpollo mission is having some problems staying in one piece during re-entry :D

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5 minutes ago, cantab said:

Can I break this rule as long as I don't take ground science from the multiple Kerbin landing biomes? It's just my Munpollo mission is having some problems staying in one piece during re-entry :D

You could aim for the Water, as its a vast Biome, or try Direct Shooting to the Water instead of the usual approach, or have you unlocked the Heat Shield...?

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2 hours ago, cantab said:

Can I break this rule as long as I don't take ground science from the multiple Kerbin landing biomes? It's just my Munpollo mission is having some problems staying in one piece during re-entry :D

I think that's a viable workaround, though better would be to aim for a large biome (like @GRS said water is great, as are the ice caps).

Another potential workaround I'd feel better about accepting would be to only recover one of those (preferably the one with the Kerbals and science) and leave the rest behind.

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On 10/19/2019 at 7:00 PM, cantab said:

Well, this made me feel like I suck at Kerbal.

Welcome to the fray! If my challenge can make a veteran feel bad about their abilities I feel I've accomplished something :D

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5 minutes ago, 5thHorseman said:

If my challenge can make a veteran feel bad about their abilities

Depends on what they do and how much they improve in time, some people improve so quickly that went from "How" to "Wow" within less than a Year (like me), it also depends on their confidence levels.

@cantab, Can you show me how the re-entrying part of the craft looks like ? I might help you on how should you re-entry.

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In the event I didn't need it. Moomba has completed the Munpollo mission in one piece.

A real old-school Kerbal rocket this time. Stacks of tanks, girders, lots of struts. A throwback to some of the first stuff I did in KSP.

Because I have Kerbal experience on, I wanted to send Jeb, Val, and Bob all to the Mun. I need a scientist to reset the science experiments obviously, and I want both pilots to get experience ready for the future orbital rendezvous missions. I also wanted to land back on Kerbin with the Science Jr to conduct more research. I thus built a winged re-entry vehicle, thinking this would be ideal for the role. (It really wasn't).

Now that I actually have struts, and tanks that are bigger than a pancake, the launch, transfer, and orbital EVA reports were fairly uneventful. I did have one quirk though: with no solars, and terriers for engines, electricity management became important. I used the main engines, in short bursts on low throttle, to turn the ship for my orbital manouvres, saving the electricity for the Mun landing and the re-entry.  Landing, on the other hand ... my excuse is I'm out of practice. Took about 5 goes to not tip over. Had to touch down real gently, under 1 m/s. I never learn not to build tall landers.

I found and played around with a Mun Stone, but Breaking Ground science isn't allowed, so I made sure to discard the experiment result.

Re-entry. Oh man re-entry. So it was supposed to enter and descend like a space shuttle. I knew when I built it that the Science Jr has bad heat tolerance, so the idea was the front wings would be underneath it and shield it. Yeah ... that didn't work. Whatever periapsis and angle I tried, it burned up. Even a 55 km periapsis was too much heating. I know other players have reported re-entry heating has become much harsher in 1.8. (Actually, OK so a 65 km periapsis was survivable. It was also about as effective as a fart at decelerating the spacecraft.)

Now for weight and balance reasons, the Science Jr is between the command pod holding one Kerbal, and the crew cabin holding the other two. And on at least one of my attempts, the ship broke apart and the two pieces exited the atmosphere again on quite different orbits. If I'd kept going with that, they would have ultimately landed in completely different places and times! (Or they might just have burnt up anyway.) That's why I was asking about landing separately.

But in the end I took a different approach - I used the landing stage as an improvised heatshield. Its bulk protected the spacecraft, and I used its engine to provide extra control to keep things stable. This still took a few attempts to find the right periapsis, but eventually it got down.

I did have plans of gliding around, maybe hitting some extra biomes. The vehicle actually flies quite nicely as a glider. But after how fraught re-entry was, none of this came to pass, I was just glad to be down.

The mission brought me the science to complete the 45 and 90 point tiers, and get two nodes in the 160 point tier. Having the command pod, crew cabin, and an experiment storage unit helped me get extra science from my Mun mission. I opted for the node with the 2.5m fairing, and the one with all the command pods. I was tempted by the big engines, but I think I won't need them for Minmus. I also considered extendable solars, but I'll make do with OX-STATs for now.

The first two missions have leapt me through the low parts of the tech tree, but it looks like things might slow down a bit now. Normally I'd rush the science experiments but the challenge rules disallow that, so Minmus probably won't be an awful lot better than Mun science-wise.

48938755081_4131179f0b_o.pngMoomba by cantab314, on Flickr

48938806811_f350e716b4_o.pngLife's a beach ... one made of grey Mun dust by cantab314, on Flickr

48938292268_f31081deaa_o.pngThe engine is for control, not braking by cantab314, on Flickr

48938302503_4aa6b87311_o.pngMain science return from the Mun by cantab314, on Flickr

48938307228_604820c2e1_o.pngOUTTAKE: This is what happens if I re-enter like I planned to by cantab314, on Flickr

Full pics in the challenge album linked above.

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Nice...that new rule (about separating pods) was actually made by an event that occurred on me, my Munpollo brought 5 Pods for 5 Kerbals, each separates during Re-entry and lands on the same Biome (Water), i went to quite a lot of places, including a Sungrazer...

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29 minutes ago, cantab said:

But in the end I took a different approach - I used the landing stage as an improvised heatshield. Its bulk protected the spacecraft, and I used its engine to provide extra control to keep things stable. This still took a few attempts to find the right periapsis, but eventually it got down.

As Walt Kerman* says, "Failure is merely one of MANY options." And you found another option. Well done!

*On the old podcast "Kerbalcast" that I used to love.

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Actually...i kinda forgot that i did the same on my first Jool 5...where i have to keep the NERVA stage...very thin on TWR...i must save as much Delta V as possible without Re-entrying too steeply or Simone, Jeb and Val won't make it through, things went far smoother in Sheepollo (Joolollo), it was capable to gain a considerable amount of Science despite being bound with Kerpollo rules.

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Just a small update: I just finished Joopollo and Kerpollo.  I documented it with 146 screenshots, so it will take some time to sort them and upload to imgurl :) 

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Nicely done!

I've done an uneventful Minpollo myself, and likewise will be uploading screenshots later. I chose the (north) Poles as the landing site and the new textures and the low Sun really gave a different look to the place. It might be the first time I've landed on the poles of Minmus. The mission gained me about 1350 science, so very similar to my Mun mission - Minmus having fewer biomes offsets its higher multiplier. I took all four orange suits, Jeb got orbit duty and the other three landed, and that's brought everyone up to level 2.

I'll be able to unlock all but 2 of the 160-point nodes now. I don't really want to "waste" a high-science mission like Dunpollo when I'm still missing a lot of the science experiments, and I'm wondering about trying something ambitious (and unnecessary) for Dres, so I might actually go to Moho next. It'll give me a chance to test KSP 1.8 with a big ship, since I don't have the Nerv.

Since it's about to become relevant to me, a question: Can we use functions of the MPL other than the science generation? In stock that's resetting goo/materials without EVAing, and leveling up Kerbals. Some mods give the MPL more functions such as for life support.

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18 minutes ago, cantab said:

Can we use functions of the MPL other than the science generation? In stock that's resetting goo/materials without EVAing, and leveling up Kerbals. Some mods give the MPL more functions such as for life support.

I'm a bit surprised I didn't state this, mostly likely because I myself used ForScience to be able to not just reset - but totally ignore and automatically collect science from - the Goo and Jr packages. And also default Science Mode everybody's level 5 to start so no leveling is necessary.

But yes. If you want to lug the mass and not get the free science from it then by all means utilize the other functions of the MPL. I'll modify the rules post.

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And here's the documentation of Minpollo.

The spacecraft are being named after summons in the Final Fantasy series. The first two were very much in name only, but now I have more parts I'm looking to take some more inspiration design-wise. Madeen is in no way a replica of its namesake from Final Fantasy IX, but I think it gave a little character to the lander - I was trying to avoid it ending up boring. Shame I didn't have the round small tank, I had to use the baguette instead for the pom-pom.

The lifter is much more "new KSP", a simple stack with boosters. Two Bobcats in the core stage, the TWR is below 1 when the boosters jettison but it's manageable, and a Poodle for the upper stage. Quickly and simply built but it does the job.

Screenshots start from here in the album: https://www.flickr.com/photos/52548818@N05/48982134347/in/album-72157711410945967/

Highlights:

48981390813_c75c8e9c11_o.pngMadeen liftoff by cantab314, on Flickr

48982168597_6b69206bd7_o.png29 km mapping orbit by cantab314, on Flickr

48982150033_b4570ebf02_o.pngKupo! by cantab314, on Flickr

48982208833_fd2101c8ba_o.pngMadeen landing site. Shores I think by cantab314, on Flickr

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9 minutes ago, cantab said:

And here's the documentation of Minpollo.

Well done! I know nothing of FF except the half run I did of FF5 about 6 months ago that I never went back to.

What's the story behind that docking port still being attached to your ship as you came back to Kerbin? :D

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On the lander it went docking port - separator - rest of lander. After the lander redocked to the orbiter, I fired the separator. This meant the lander's docking port, that had landed on Minmus, was attached to the orbiter. The idea is that when the orbiter then returns to Kerbin, I get credit and science for recovery of a vessel that landed on Minmus, not merely that orbited it.

This didn't work. The docking port alone doesn't count. I think it has to be a command module. Since probe cores on the lander are banned taking advantage of this isn't straightforward, but I may look into it again in future.

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