DRAG0Nmon

Smallest Rocket To Orbit Challenge!

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Posted (edited)

Your objective: Build the smallest rocket possible that can get into orbit. There are 2 categories, each with 2 sub-categories. I will judge each rocket in 2 separate ways, cost and mass. Each one will have its own leader board. The rules are simple. No cheating with Hyperedit, debug menu, ect. The rocket must be completely stock. No mods that alter physics and no clipping parts to exploit physics. The rocket can be manned or unmanned, each will have their own leader board. Make sure to post pictures showing your rocket in flight and showing it's mass and cost. 

ALSO: The rocket must be a rocket, not a cross between a rocket and a plane. It must take off from the launch pad ,and have other rocket qualities.

 https://imgur.com/a/swbkZaD This is my entry

LOWEST MASS ROCKETS

Unmanned:

1. Pds314- 0.855 tonnes

2. Pds314- 1.091 tonnes

3. mystified- 1.491 tonnes

4. Johnster_Space_Program- 3.420 tonnes

5. DRAG0Nmon- 4.460 tonnes

Manned:

1. Aetharan- 1.990 tonnes

2. Aetharan- 2.053 tonnes

3. Aetharan- 2.085 tonnes

4. Aetharan-2.159 tonnes

5. Ironbars- 2.175 tonnes

LOWEST COST ROCKETS

Unmanned:

1. Pds314- 640 kerbucks 

2. Pds314- 2110 kerbucks

3. mystified- 4580 kerbucks

4. Johnster_Space_Program- 5250 kerbucks

5. DRAG0Nmon- 7,154 kerbucks

Manned:

1. TheFlyingKerman- 2603 kerbucks

2. Aetharan- 3907 kerbucks

3. farmerben- 3982 kerbucks

4. Aetharan- 4276 kerbucks 

5. Ironbars- 4423 kerbucks 

Notes- zolotiyeruki, if you can find some screenshots of that old craft, I will gladly accept it!

Pds314 maintains the top 2 spots for lightest and cheapest unmanned crafts. TheFlyingKerman holds the cheapest manned rocket. Artharan has almost stolen  every spot for the lightest manned rocket, taking 1, 2, 3, and 4! Will he be able to take 5?

Keep up the amazing work everyone!

Edited by DRAG0Nmon
Updated standings 2!!!!!

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Posted (edited)

I'm gonna try to get something much lighter.

Edited by Pds314

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Posted (edited)

I have an unnamed run under 1 ton that still has pretty generous margins. I may try staging off spent fuel tanks. Or possibly adding a lightweight upper stage.

Edited by Pds314

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Posted (edited)

It's a stupid simple design but here it is. 3 small inline tanks, a nose, and an octo core. The tanks flow so that it remains stable even after shutting thrust off, and it hibernates almost the entire flight.

If anyone can figure out a way to use the Twitch engine instead without causing excessive drag or flipping the rocket, they could probably remove an entire octo tank. Likewise, if you can figure out how to stage it correctly and shroud the engine

Starting mass: 855 kg
Mission cost: $2110
Non-Kerbal'd.

MBRMcMI.png
EZORO99.png
GiU7GOh.png

Edited by Pds314

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Posted (edited)

Dedicated low-cost mission. A real pain to fly because it is not stable when low on fuel and has no stability augmentation whatsoever. I don't know that there's a way to improve this without swapping the the $300 Stayputnik for a $200 lawn chair (which would also save fuel because Kerbals have like 600 m/s of Delta-V).

Mass: 1091 kg
Cost: $690
Unkerbal'd.

THLe8Wa.png

Edited by Pds314

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I made a little rocket that puts a Kerbal in orbit with 3.665t and costs 5,260 moneys. I'm betting it could be optimized more and get even lighter.

hnTZdnZ.png

QrNFNtQ.png

Jeb doesn't look really happy about it, though.

LcJw2lg.png

I can't find the screenshot for him in orbit. I'm going to redo the mission and get that now.

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Well, it's an old challenge (the version I participated in being found here), and so an old design paradigm that I bring back.  @doggonemess beats me for cost by 347 kerbucks, while I take the mass lead by 1,361 kg over that vessel, which was already lighter than @TheFlyingKerman's SSTO.  Unlike @nikyname, my kerbal stays on his rocket the entire time, and nothing clips through the fairing.  I do, however, understand if you wish to disqualify this machine for using an air-breathing engine, but that was not clearly disallowed in the OP.

https://imgur.com/a/Y8WfDqB

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Apologies for not updating this, I was recently on a 3 week trip around Australia, and then completely forgot about this. But now I remembered about this, and took a look through the entries. Excelent work to everyone, I will definitely have to do this again. Thanks for all the feedback, can't wait for more entries!

And Aetharan, I will accept your craft because it does take off from the launchpad and does fly like a rocket.

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On 6/29/2019 at 6:02 AM, DRAG0Nmon said:

Notes- TheFlyingKerman, please tell me the cost of your manned rocket so I can put it down in the standings.

The last manned rocket costs 9155. Now my entry for cheapest manned rocket:

screenshot23.png

2603 funds (the cost of the Twitch engines go down from 400 to 230 in later versions) , 10.165t

screenshot21.png

screenshot12.png

Orbit.

 

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Well, I've gone back and brought Jeb home in my previous post, updating the gallery to show the landing process.  I have also iterated on the design and made another flight, although this mission is also questionable due to the interactions of a fairing that doesn't flare out with a Donut tank, so it's another call for @DRAG0Nmon to make.  https://imgur.com/a/Z1gegPD
 

If the Mk.16 isn't disqualified, then I've dropped the mass to 2.159t and the cost to 5,535 kerbucks, with the potential to recover up to 1,239.

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Takeoff weight 10.245t

Cost $3982

While slightly bigger than The Flying Kerman's entry, mine can land safely.  I did not see his entry before I designed this.  

Always looking for a legitimate reason to use the puff engine.  It's light and cheap, but the 10 extra mono propellant in the capsule are an advantage this once.

 

Spoiler

1d7EZFv.jpg

e56eQe9.png

DLn6KCq.png

 

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Here's my submissions for unmanned and manned rockets. They're pretty good, but I'm sure I could improve them.

Unmanned

Manned

At the beginning of each video you can see the stats of each craft, including mass and cost.

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A good while back, there was a similar challenge:

Unfortunately, my entry in that challenge somehow didn't include a screenshot of the mass at launch, but it *was* under 1t, and had enough dV to get a Mun flyby.

I might have to dust off that design and see if I can best Pds314...

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Posted (edited)

Well, I couldn't let my previous attempt with its questionable clipping status stand, and I figured that I may as well try to reduce weight while I was at it.  The Ogod-Y Mk.17 didn't go well, and I lost several pilots trying to make it work before moving on to the Ogod-Y Mk.18.  Weighing in at 2.053t before the Kerbal climbs on and costing 5,494 kerbucks, it takes its pilot up into orbit and back down again in one piece.  Unfortunately, I noticed on the way down that the Mk.18 still had some clipping issues, this time with its own pilot's helmet.

Not being one to just let this stand, more modifications were made, and so came the Ogod-Y Mk.19 launching the very next morning.  The mass and cost are identical to the Mk.18, but the clipping issues have been fixed once and for all.  Thus, it is this latest flight that I present as my current entry to the contest.  The upper stage, empty, has a maximum recovery value of 1,173 kerbucks if I were to land it on the pad or runway, and thus the cost of a perfectly-optimal flight (which, once again, I didn't actually do so this is a theoretical exercise) would be 4,321 kerbucks.

Editing to note: With this launch, I've officially beaten in 1.7.2 (staying with that because Editor Extensions Redux hasn't updated to 1.7.3 yet) the lowest mass I achieved in the previous challenge back in 2016 with the Lanwdart Mk.3, which was an iteration on another player's core design to begin with.  It makes me very happy to have pushed my own design lineage ahead of the borrowed one after all this time!

Editing Again: Bored Aetharan is dangerous Aetharan.  The Ogod-Y Mk.20 trades out the first-stage for a pure rocket intended to get as close as I could to the same upper-stage starting point as the Mk.19 had.  I succeeded.  The Mk.20 weighs 1.990 tons unkerballed and costs 3,907 kerbucks.  Even better?  Not only did I land it, as with previous runs, but this time I landed it at KSC.  On the runway.  So if this hadn't been a sandbox save, I'd have collected the entire 1,173 of the dry Mk.19 / Mk.20 upper stage on recovery, bringing the actual cost of the flight to orbit and back down to 2,734 funds.

Edited by Aetharan

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Posted (edited)

Aw, @DRAG0Nmon, the whole point of the iteration is to have a single entry that is the very best I can produce, not to flood the leaderboard.  Just count my best entry!

(Edit:  Besides, you included the Lawndart in there (the 2.085t), and that's a 3-year-old craft that doesn't even work in modern KSP!)

Edited by Aetharan

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Posted (edited)

The point of the challenge is to have fun doing it and completing it. You can complete it as many times as you want to, whether it’s once, or maybe 5 times. I count every entry so people can have the option to say to themselves “I don’t think I can get #1, but I can definitely get #3”. To @Aetharan specifically, you don’t have to be proud of having 4 out of 5 spots, but I am impressed, and it wouldn’t be fair to include some entries but not all. 

Edited by DRAG0Nmon

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Posted (edited)

Here's my first entry: 774kg to orbit, with >400m/s dV to spare.  I should be able to drain some fuel and still make it easily.

https://imgur.com/a/OgTLuo8

EDIT: I took out 20kg of fuel from the second stage, and still made it to orbit with 150-ish m/s of dV left.  So my entry is now 754 kg.

Edited by zolotiyeruki

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