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Kerbal Space Program 1.7.3 is live!

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42 minutes ago, Kerbart said:

So you will need SAS or RCS when starting or stopping a habitat ring (or solar panels), to keep the station from spinning (and the SAS system will have to be reset at one point). But in a “stationary” situation (ring spinning at a constant rate) you will not.

Cool then we're on the some page :)

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Posted (edited)

I have a feeling some people don't understand how propellers work. Increasing throttle/torque doesn't always equal more thrust. It depends a lot on how you manage the propeller pitch. It's like a gearbox really. You can push pedal to the floor on the first gear but that doesn't mean you will go 6x faster because the fuel consumption rose 6x, or something.

You can fly really fast even at throttle set to 10% if you watch the prop pitch and operate it carefully.

Edited by Wjolcz

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Wjolcz said:

I have a feeling some people don't understand how propellers work.

I found this video quite helpful with understanding just how they work.
Much of this also applies to how they work in-game

 

Edited by Just Jim

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@Maxsimal From my tests with prop planes, they work, but Squad's axis groups could really use a range limiter. For instance, prop pitch (as controlled by authority limiter) should go from about -20% to 100%. Right now, if set up to respond to throttle, it goes from -150% to 150%, which results in only a quarter of throttle axis range being usable. Beyond 100% authority, they seem to lose thrust, and you only need a little negative range for thrust reversal. A way to clamp it would be supremely useful. Of course, you can make a fixed pitch prop, and bind throttle to torque, but that's less efficient.

I also had no luck making helos. It seems that the control surface based cyclic doesn't work right. 

BTW, have you guys given consideration to putting robotics code into the base game and basing all wheels and landing leg suspensions on it? You can control friction (as per the new grip pads), have a decent-looking engine module, and robotic-based joints could be used for suspensions. The DLC would still have more than enough left to be worth purchasing, modders would be happy and you could deprecate the buggy crock that is the current wheel code. Not only that, it could make modular wheels possible. I've seen cases of people making wheels out of robotics (back when that was a mod) and fuel tanks, and TBH, this looked less Kraken-inducing than the dedicated wheel module.

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Prop pitch is indeed a knowledge only for the innitiated in it's arcane arts and sublime mysteries (until you get it and thinks "it was so obvious!").

I am a bit surprised that squad made it so that the game goes there, and using the  new robotics gizmo no less. I am not one to defend dumbing down the game, God forbids, but this particular thing seems to me a bit too much for most people.

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5 minutes ago, Daniel Prates said:

Prop pitch is indeed a knowledge only for the innitiated in it's arcane arts and sublime mysteries (until you get it and thinks "it was so obvious!").

I am a bit surprised that squad made it so that the game goes there, and using the  new robotics gizmo no less. I am not one to defend dumbing down the game, God forbids, but this particular thing seems to me a bit too much for most people.

I agree completely.

If they were a lot better for all the effort then great but they are worse than the jet engines in every sense I can see. 

The new engines either need a "dumb mode" or the default settings for the engines + props should be set so they just work out of the box. 

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25 minutes ago, Daniel Prates said:

 particular thing seems to me a bit too much for most people.

Yeah, like Tsiolkovsky equation, and vis viva, and rocket science... :sticktongue:

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Posted (edited)

Anyone have any idea why theres a new /Mono folder and UnityPlayer.dll in the /KSP install folder?

Edited by Stone Blue

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21 minutes ago, Foxster said:

If they were a lot better for all the effort then great but they are worse than the jet engines in every sense I can see. 

 

Good luck using only jet engines on a helicopter.

If you tune the motor size, RPM and Torque Limit properly you can get some pretty efficient designs. 

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@SQUAD Nice job Squad! But please, on the next update, please please please please include more sound effects! These new rotors and props definitely need sound! Same with the other robotics parts and all the wheel parts too!

 

 

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5 hours ago, Yargnit said:

Really they'd fit equally in either category, but this makes them a bit easier to find because that tab is less crowded.

The same reason I look for lost items in the brightest lit room of my house.

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Posted (edited)
43 minutes ago, peteletroll said:

Yeah, like Tsiolkovsky equation, and vis viva, and rocket science... :sticktongue:

Hehehe touché, but that too is something most people apply in ksp with in an intuitive, superficial manner.

Maybe I am wrong, maybe ksp is giving incentive for the next generation of propeller designers. But I will adhere to @Foxster here, at the very least we need some simplification, like using the throttle commands to increase/decrease rpm, and another set to change prop pitch. Nothing more.

Edited by Daniel Prates

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6 hours ago, Yargnit said:

The usage model has changed, you'll see higher peak usage in some cases, but other cases will see much less EC used.

Well this is not good enough. It has completely borked every craft I have built since the DLC came out.

I've submitted a bug report here:

https://bugs.kerbalspaceprogram.com/issues/23175

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1 hour ago, T1mo98 said:

Good luck using only jet engines on a helicopter.

You could make a VTOL with jet engines that would fly easier and have better MPG.

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3 hours ago, 5thHorseman said:

Cool then we're on the some page :)

No, we’re not. You’re on page 5, I’m on page 4.

:D

2 hours ago, Daniel Prates said:

Prop pitch is indeed a knowledge only for the innitiated in it's arcane arts and sublime mysteries (until you get it and thinks "it was so obvious!").

I am a bit surprised that squad made it so that the game goes there, and using the  new robotics gizmo no less. I am not one to defend dumbing down the game, God forbids, but this particular thing seems to me a bit too much for most people.

I can’t wait for combustion engines with mixture control that have to run leaner at high altitudes.

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Playing around with 1.7.3, and looking for interesting / original stuff to do with the parts.  ("Use it as intended?  Pffft, that's just what they'll be expecting us to do...")

Gotta say that overall, I'm really happy with this patch-- lotta nice fixes, some very nice parts.  :)

Anyway, here I combined the small helicopter blades with little hinges to make cheap, super lightweight, half-assed airbrakes for a shoestring LKO rescue vehicle.

mvBwlJZ.png

1LHe0s0.png

6 tons on the launchpad, can rescue a kerbal from LKO with nearly 1 km/s of dV to spare.  Under 7K funds.  Its terminal velocity when falling with the blades open is around ~65 m/s, so just a bit of retro-thrust from the Spark (mounted underneath, not visible here) makes it easy to land.  (That's a Pug engine from MissingHistory powering the second stage, but I'm sure this would work just fine with a stock engine in its place, such as a Terrier or even just a Spark.)

I really like the new grip pads, but I think they ought to be a lot lower on the tech tree.  Rant in spoiler.  :)

Spoiler

The way it's set up right now, you get the giant pads/strips at the 160-tech tier with Advanced Construction... but the little ones don't show up until 550 tech (!!!) on the node Advanced Motors.  Which seems.. suboptimal to me, for a couple of reasons.

First... they're just frictiony rubber pads, which feels like they ought to be available at very, very low tech levels.  Heck, if the 160 tier unlocks the most advanced actual landing gear, then it seems like "rubber pad with no moving parts" should be lower than that.

Second... they've got nothing to do with motors.  It's a simple construction element.  I suppose they'd be useful for robots (e.g. for feet or grippers)... but that's actually not my primary use case (since I'm not in the habit of building walkers or robotic claw-arms).  Rather, the most compelling use case I have for them in my own gameplay has nothing to do with robotics at all:  They're a useful ground-contact surface for when landing gear is impractical.  If I've got, say, a 200-ton Eve lander that snaps any landing gear that I try to put on... well, I'll just build my own landing gear out of girders, same as I've always done.  Either purely rigid, or with Breaking Ground hinges.  And all I want is to have some grippy pads for putting on the bottom of my lander.

That seems like a simple, low-tech way to land.  It's arguably inferior to actual landing gear (no shock absorbers, no springs) ... so it seems odd to me that it's a higher tech level.

Anyway, a kind of minor nit, which I can easily fix in my own gameplay with a ModuleManager patch.  I'll probably move the small pads / strips down to General Construction, and the big pads/strips down to Advanced Construction.

 

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38 minutes ago, Kerbart said:

I can’t wait for combustion engines with mixture control that have to run leaner at high altitudes.

Ach, don't get me started. Piston engines is something the game is still far from doing well, even some mods specifically tailored to do that haven't got even close. 

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40 minutes ago, Foxster said:

You could make a VTOL with jet engines that would fly easier and have better MPG.

I said helicopter, not VTOL.

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5 minutes ago, T1mo98 said:

I said helicopter, not VTOL.

Let me butt in here.... Actually, I have spoken skeptically about this new propeller business so far, but a place I think it has the potential to work very well is with helicopter design!

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36 minutes ago, T1mo98 said:

I said helicopter, not VTOL.

Yup but a VTOL could do the same job. 

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The blades work great for me... though I'm a little surprised that the rotors use as little electricity as they do.

ChgnNrV.png

This little contraption (with counter-rotating blades) can cruise at ~34 m/s horizontally while climbing slightly, and still manage to get more juice from the solar panels than the motors are using-- that's as shown, even with the sun at a low angle so that my solar panels aren't optimally aimed at it.

Really fun and fairly easy to fly.  :)  Just... would have expected it to be a bit thirstier for electricity, is all.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Foxster said:

I agree completely.

If they were a lot better for all the effort then great but they are worse than the jet engines in every sense I can see. 

The new engines either need a "dumb mode" or the default settings for the engines + props should be set so they just work out of the box. 

Yes, but with the electric motors and the lack of oxygen in some atmospheres, it allows for some cool possibilities on other planets.

9 hours ago, 5thHorseman said:

What force stops it?

If you rotate something 100rpm and your station is 100x the mass of the thing, your station will rotate 1rpm the other way.

Well, not quite. If your station has 100x the moment of inertia it will rotate 100x slower unless that is prevented through some mechanism. Mass and moment of inertia are related to each other and are analogous, but the physics of rotating objects is not only dependent on mass, but also the distribution of that mass.

Edited by Bill Phil

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Bill Phil said:

moment of inertia

Thank you. I was so concerned with THAT it would rotate, I got sloppy on HOW it would rotate :)

Edited by 5thHorseman

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, T1mo98 said:

If you tune the motor size, RPM and Torque Limit properly you can get some pretty efficient designs. 

Given how little time I get to play, I don’t want to muck around to figure out how to operate a propeller or heli-rotor properly, even though (or because) I understand the physics involved. So I second @Foxster‘ call for a dumb mode  

So how long until a modder figures out a control interface so that pitch/torque/RPM are automatically adjusted to vary overall propeller thrust based on throttle input ?

OMG I just realized I described something that sounds like a job for MechJeb, which I have never once installed (KER based mods yes). So never mind, I’ll figure it out  

 

Edited by StrandedonEarth

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Dragon01 said:

For instance, prop pitch (as controlled by authority limiter) should go from about -20% to 100%. Right now, if set up to respond to throttle, it goes from -150% to 150%, which results in only a quarter of throttle axis range being usable. Beyond 100% authority, they seem to lose thrust, and you only need a little negative range for thrust reversal. A way to clamp it would be supremely useful.

I agree, there should be a double sided limiting slider like for actuators, hinges and servos - binding blade pitch authority to throttle should traverse along that limited region. That being said, I wouldn’t bind pitch to the throttle, but translation F/B, and let the throttle control the RPM.

In addition, pitch beyond 100 isn’t useless at all. I’ve found that blade type B is most effective for takeoff when deployed at 115, then you reduce the deployment (i.e. increase blade pitch) as you roll down the runway to pick up more speed. Blade pitch is pretty much an air-based gearbox.

Edited by Bartybum

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