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sturmovik

sturmovik

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I'm a real noob here, but here goes:

I'm trying to do my first Mun landing, but when I set the Mun as a target I then cannot use the RCS Target function to maintain stability on descent (as done in Mun tutorial #2). Is this normal or a bug? If normal, is there any way around it to still use that function? If a bug, how do I report/correct it (already restarted game). Thanks everyone!

Edited by sturmovik
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Welcome to the forums!

No, the "target" that is shown in the tutorials was specially hand-coded into the tutorial to make the tutorial easy. Sorry, but actually landing a craft on the Mun is supposed to be harder than it is in the tutorial. The tutorial is just supposed to show you the basic technique that you should use.

In general, when actually landing on the Mun, you have to do four things. The first is to get to a fairly low altitude while still at almost orbital velocity. This minimizes the time that it takes to actually land. The more time you take, the more fuel you will have to burn -- because gravity pulls down the same amount every second, so the more seconds it takes, the more gravity you have to fight.

The second step is spotting a good landing site, as the terrain zooms past.

The third step is killing nearly all your orbital velocity as fast as you can, by locking SAS to "Retrograde" in Surface mode on your Navball, and burning really hard.

And the fourth step is to actually touch down gently. An advanced technique is to calculate and use something called a "Suicide burn". Or, you can just make sure to keep your velocity down to something reasonable (like 60 m/s) and then burn hard just before you land. All that is still usually done while SAS is in "retrograde" mode -- but sometimes using "Radial Out" mode is also good. If you use retrograde mode, make sure your downward velocity always stays higher than 1 m/s.

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Yes, I was afraid it would require actual skill. If Neil Armstrong figured it out, I can too. Thanks for the info!

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Yes, I was afraid it would require actual skill. If Neil Armstrong figured it out, I can too. Thanks for the info!

EDIT: Just managed a near-actual landing! (and considering I'm using a deep-space design that doesn't even have an actual lander, I'm counting it) Thanks again!

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What I do is to use SAS in surface mode set to "retrograde" for most of the landing burn, but switch to "radial out" just before touchdown (when I killed all my horizontal velocity). The latter has the advantage that it still works when your surface velocity is smaller than 1 m/s and it will use the reaction wheels to keep the vessel steady (or straighten it up) when the *bleeping* landing legs kick it around.

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You're not as noob as I was on my first landing.  I didn't even know what RCS was.  Rest in pieces, lander.

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Still relatively inexperienced ive made 3 landings now. I burn hard to get velocity down to 100m/s once i hit circa 12-14k elevation. This can take some time and occassionally I run outta time. From then onwards I do rapid quick burns to maintain 50-60m/s from 1k. As i near the surface I burn again to drop it to 10m/s, literally jogging between 'z' and 'x' keys, and then very quick bursts to get it to 5m/s on touchdown. Theres prob more efficient ways, but this has worked for me so far. Mostly. Ahem. Good luck and yes finding somewhere flat can be troublesome.

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2 hours ago, bootsam said:

Theres prob more efficient ways,

Yes, the most fuel-efficient method is a "suicide burn": burn full throttle retrograde at the last moment so that you come to rest at the moment you touch the ground. It has the tiny disadvantage that it leaves no margin for error. But knowing that this is the most efficient allows you to improve your method over time.

Another suggestion is to not use full throttle ('z' key) on the final tens of meters, but use a lower throttle setting. E.g. use just enough throttle to offset gravity and keep your speed constant.

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