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vhazrd

De-Orbiting a Thruster - What is the minimum req?

Question

As you can see I have my station attached to a thruster, but I cannot control the thruster to de-orbit it after un-docking from the station, even with the presence of those relays.

WTdclvu.jpg

I am playing in career mode and I have a level 2 tracking station and can afford the next upgrade.

 

Question:

is there anything I can bring up on the next part of the station that will allow my thruster ship to communicate with KSC to allow me to control it and finish a de-orbit burn?

the thruster ship is has a probe core, and the little antenna seen in the picture there, plus a big reaction wheel. the only thing it doesn't have is more power outside of the small charge that is in the core.

 

If I have to re-fly to do it what do I need to add to the thruster?

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If all you want to do is crash the booster into the moon to clean up the orbit just turn off anything on the booster that will use electricity, turn the whole vehicle so that it points retrograde, detach the station and fly it sideways with the RCS until it's clear of the booster  and then switch back and light the engine. Once the poodle is running it will generate electricity to keep the probe core powered.

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1. Does your station move to the far side of the Mun after undocking?  You have a probe core and antenna, the internal antenna should be enough and the booster should be able to communicate through those relay antennas unless the station component loses contact with KSC.

2. Does the station have it's own probe core?  I've never run into this myself, all of my comsats and stations with relay antennas include a probe core, but it's possible that without some kind of control those relay antennas may become non-functional.

3. Finally, that reaction wheel is likely to burn through the power inside just that probe core very quickly and I don't see any solar panels.  If you are running out of power you won't be able to control that booster section.

Determine which one of these is the issue and solve them as follows:

1. Wait until the station moves around the Mun and reconnects to KSC.

2. Send your second station module with a probe core and attach the whole thing to the station.

3. Send your second station module with a small independent section with extra batteries and maybe a solar panel.  Dock it to the free flying booster section and use that power to de-orbit it.

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26 minutes ago, overkill13 said:

3. Send your second station module with a small independent section with extra batteries and maybe a solar panel.  Dock it to the free flying booster section and use that power to de-orbit it.

If it is a power issue you may be able to skip this by deactivating the large reaction wheel and just using the torque from the probe core to turn. I can't imagine the large wheel would give you more than a couple of a seconds before it burns through the probe's tiny internal battery.

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If your station has enough fuel, another way to do this would be:

1) Before separating, do a retrograde burn, just enough so that the entire craft is on a deorbit trajectory.  Might as well use the thruster module's engine/fuel for this.

2) Rotate so that the station module is facing the prograde/forward direction.

3) Decouple the thruster module.

4) Use the station's propulsion to burn prograde and put it back into the desired orbit.  I can't see if you have a full engine on the station, but even the RCS blocks shoud be able to do this in plenty of time.

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Depending on your settings, once you decouple the thruster, it should be in "Limited control mode". Which means you should still have some control over it, even if you have no radio reception at all. After decoupling, do Z and X still work to control thrust? Does SAS still activate? Does the CommNet signal bar turn yellow?

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On 8/14/2019 at 5:44 PM, Reactordrone said:

If all you want to do is crash the booster into the moon to clean up the orbit just turn off anything on the booster that will use electricity, turn the whole vehicle so that it points retrograde, detach the station and fly it sideways with the RCS until it's clear of the booster  and then switch back and light the engine. Once the poodle is running it will generate electricity to keep the probe core powered.

This was enough. I hadn't thought to move the station out of the way and try the thrusters, i just assumed i had completely lost control somehow.

 

You've all helped make the universe a cleaner place.

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