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Getting back to the Mun! A Nova-C Lunar Lander Challenge Contest


StarSlay3r
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Another question lol. What's the verdict on cheats such as infinite fuel? I wasn't planning on using them originally, but needing 900 delta-v for lunar injection into orbit and orbit into landing is something severe we have to take into consideration during our design phase. Using infinite fuel would allow players to remove about 2-4 fuel tanks from their builds and still make it look realistic enough to be convincing to the untrained eye.

Edited by James M
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5 hours ago, James M said:

I can't imagine they'll say Breaking Ground and Making History aren't allowed considering the F9 is a 5m diameter rocket. We'll just have to hear back from them to know for sure.

Falcon 9 stages are 3.6 meters in diameter. Fairings are 5.2 meters.

 

3 hours ago, James M said:

Getting started on the lander and I had a feeling this would happen. The lander so far consists of 1 probe, a structural fuselage, and 19 panels and already weighs in at 1.565t (1565kg). With an expected wet mass of 1980kg and considering

It's impossible to match appearance, size, and mass at the same time in stock KSP. To match appearance a lot of parts like structural panels and struts would have to be used for visual detailing. Except parts in stock KSP are very heavy for balancing reasons and with that the mass requirement goes out the window. 

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9 minutes ago, Scorpu said:

Falcon 9 stages are 3.6 meters in diameter. Fairings are 5.2 meters.

Oh  lol thank you. I should've read the wikipedia more carefully, I was just quickly skimming :sticktongue:

11 minutes ago, Scorpu said:

It's impossible to match appearance, size, and mass at the same time in stock KSP. To match appearance a lot of parts like structural panels and struts would have to be used for visual detailing. Except parts in stock KSP are very heavy for balancing reasons and with that the mass requirement goes out the window. 

Yeah, apparently, I found that out the hard way! I managed to make a 2x2x3m lander with the correct mass and (theoretically) enough delta v to land once. All I can say is I had to cut all the weight I could and I'm still flying with the narrowest of margins rn. 

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8 hours ago, James M said:

I can't imagine they'll say Breaking Ground and Making History aren't allowed considering the F9 is a 5m diameter rocket

 

20 hours ago, KSPStar said:

Mods are NOT allowed
This challenge is intended to be completed in Stock KSP. This means players can not utilize DLC or any other add-ons to complete the challenge

 

Happy landings!

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Is it irony that the real flight will be handled by auto-pilot (and has 'Intuitive' in its name) but, we have to fly this by our own meat paws? :D

 

Asking for a friend, who strikes a very similar appearance to myself.

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"gravity assist around Kerbin" has been updated to direct throw TLI. 
 

10 hours ago, James M said:

Another question lol. What's the verdict on cheats such as infinite fuel? I wasn't planning on using them originally, but needing 900 delta-v for lunar injection into orbit and orbit into landing is something severe we have to take into consideration during our design phase. Using infinite fuel would allow players to remove about 2-4 fuel tanks from their builds and still make it look realistic enough to be convincing to the untrained eye.

No cheats are allowed.

7 hours ago, Scorpu said:

It's impossible to match appearance, size, and mass at the same time in stock KSP. To match appearance a lot of parts like structural panels and struts would have to be used for visual detailing. Except parts in stock KSP are very heavy for balancing reasons and with that the mass requirement goes out the window. 

We definitely do not expect players to match everything exactly. We understand things still have to function properly in game and that has been taken into consideration. We're just looking for players to get as close as they can. :)

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14 hours ago, Madrocketman said:

-Seems like the science thing can be exploited, plus, are all science experiments equal? Because a Mystery Goo and a Science Jr. are not created equal... and do we count duplicates? Like can we have 20 thermometers? Because there aren't 20 unique science items in stock ksp.

-What do we count as landing safely? Are we saying "no horizontal velocity" is there a speed limit we are considering? Same question for Falcon 9

-having realistic mass is also a hard one to define... Because we can just clip fuel to give the ideal mass. Plus, the dry mass and wet mass in KSP is unrealistic compared to real life? So what counts as realistic mass?

-Can we use flags for aesthetics? Because that would improve the looks of our crafts, but does it violate the "no mods?"

 

- Science is capped at a maximum of 20 points. (2 points each across the board) If you have 20 thermometers your max possible points would still be 20, however, having a bunch of extras added to the craft could cause it to not look as realistic, which may in turn cause you to lose points for "realistic Nova-C recreation". So that is something to consider. 
- No speed limit restrictions for the lander or Falcon 9. Stick the landing and don't break anything! (Landing sideways, or breaking parts wouldn't be considered a "safe landing", but other than that we're not being too nitpicky here)
- We know there will likely be some clipping for aesthetics and we're ok with that for those that are trying to get the exact look, however if we see excessive clipping or find that a bunch of extra fuel tanks were clipped inside, that would result in a deduction of realism points.
- Custom flags are allowed. The post has already been updated to state that as well. 

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2 hours ago, KSPStar said:

- Science is capped at a maximum of 20 points. (2 points each across the board) If you have 20 thermometers your max possible points would still be 20, however, having a bunch of extras added to the craft could cause it to not look as realistic, which may in turn cause you to lose points for "realistic Nova-C recreation". So that is something to consider. 
- No speed limit restrictions for the lander or Falcon 9. Stick the landing and don't break anything! (Landing sideways, or breaking parts wouldn't be considered a "safe landing", but other than that we're not being too nitpicky here)
- We know there will likely be some clipping for aesthetics and we're ok with that for those that are trying to get the exact look, however if we see excessive clipping or find that a bunch of extra fuel tanks were clipped inside, that would result in a deduction of realism points.
- Custom flags are allowed. The post has already been updated to state that as well. 

Thanks for the additional information. Thank you for answering them :) 

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Ok so more questions 

Is there any way we could get some sort of scale on those wireframe images? (or simply the size of the lander?) I haven't really been able to find the crafts size other than "2 meter diameter" on wikipedia - the source of which is a news article for 2018 - along with a picture of a presumably old design

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Well, you could maybe use the falcon 9 as a reference..

22 minutes ago, Bubbadevlin said:

Ok so more questions 

Is there any way we could get some sort of scale on those wireframe images? (or simply the size of the lander?) I haven't really been able to find the crafts size other than "2 meter diameter" on wikipedia - the source of which is a news article for 2018 - along with a picture of a presumably old design

 

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Scoring details:

  • Up to 30 Points for a realistic Nova-C recreation. (appearance, size, and mass all matter)

Gah!  Sabotaged from the start!   I was going to go a little crazy.

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17 hours ago, Bubbadevlin said:

Ok so more questions 

Is there any way we could get some sort of scale on those wireframe images? (or simply the size of the lander?) I haven't really been able to find the crafts size other than "2 meter diameter" on wikipedia - the source of which is a news article for 2018 - along with a picture of a presumably old design


Here's a couple additional images from Intuitive Machines. I'll add these to the original post for better visibility as well. 

 

Nova-C 2.jpg

Nova-C 1.jpg

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cnCwYC2.jpg

Giggling with excitement right now! :D

Although... I do have a question before I start celebrating. How much of a boost toward the moon will you guys be getting from the falcon's upper stage? Is your entire transfer orbit done with the lander's fuel? 

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14 hours ago, minerbat said:

only for peope from the USA? :( that's a shame...

The prize would be to much expensive for non USA residents - not to mention potential legal problems on allowing non USA citizens on some facilities that may be considered sensitive nowadays.

May I suggest a hashtag for Hors Concours entries? Ok, we would be out of the competition, but it would be fun to participate anyway!

Edited by Lisias
Grammars… {sigh) - good thing I'm a programmer, not a novelist!!
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I don't see why 18 is the limit for contests like this. Not like we're doing anything to ourselves other than transporting ourselves someplace, I understand reasons like not wanting to have to have a parent there to supervise, but what about emancipated citizens? Another thing that's funny is that we can drive at 16 which is extremely dangerous, but we can't do something simple as going to Houston and standing in a room where people are controlling a rocket. This would be my absolute dream to win this contest and be at launch control, but sadly I haven't gone around the sun enough times to do so. I myself have stood in the room where they monitor the ISS, the rooms where the Apollo and Gemini missions were flown, I've stood a couple hundred feet away from a fully stacked Starship, touched a Saturn V and other early space age rockets, but I can't see this from anything other than a television or computer screen? The disappointment that is ageism.

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59 minutes ago, BigStar Aerospace said:

I don't see why 18 is the limit for contests like this.

Probably the nature of the prize is my thought.  Since they're flying somebody to their facility and probably tours and so on.  So this can require special insurance and legal issues. 

I always kind of err on the side of the most polite explanation so it's probably stuff like that rather than something nefarious.

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On 3/1/2022 at 10:59 AM, KSPStar said:

For millennia we have stared in awe towards the sky and wondered about the nature and the mysteries of the celestial objects we are able to see at night. Besides the sun, no other object has sparked more fascination in us than the Moon, inspiring countless myths and legends across cultures and nations. In 1966, the Luna 9 spacecraft became the first spacecraft to successfully land on it, and only 3 years later, aboard Apollo 11, humans stepped on lunar soil for the first time, a feat that would not be repeated after Apollo 17 in 1972. For many years, we shifted our attention towards other parts of the solar system, but in the past decade, interest in revisiting our only natural satellite has reignited. Attracted by its natural resources and as a possible hub for interplanetary travel, the Moon has become once more the focus of various space agencies and commercial companies in a reinvigorated modern space race.  

Target Location.jpg


As one of nine contractor companies selected by NASA in November 2018 to submit bids for the Commercial Lunar Payload Services program, Intuitive Machines will launch its first out of three lunar landers, the IM-1 Nova-C lander, in summer 2022 aboard a Falcon 9 rocket. Nova-C will be the first U.S. vehicle to softly land on the lunar surface since 1972. The lander features the VR900 engine, which uses methane and liquid oxygen and produces 4,000N of thrust, as well as advanced autonomous landing and hazard detection technologies. Capable of carrying 130kg of cargo, the IM-1 Nova-C lander will land on the Moon within 1 degree of 25 N latitude, 50 W longitude, in Vallis Schroteri in Oceanus Procellarum, in a chosen 200-meter landing site, and will ferry numerous experiments to explore and test technologies to process natural resources of the Moon. As such, it will become the first commercial company to bring NASA and commercial payloads to the lunar surface. 
 


To celebrate this milestone, we have partnered with Intuitive Machines for an exciting KSP challenge, where you'll have the opportunity to win an invitation to join their team in their brand new and modern Mission Control Center in Houston, TX, for the real IM-1 Nova-C moon landing!

So, what is this challenge about? Simple, build a Nova-C lander and recreate the IM-1 mission as close as you can! The closest you get to the real thing, the better.

To successfully complete this challenge, you’ll need to:  

  • Build a Nova-C analogue and load it with scientific experiments. 
  • Launch it aboard a Falcon 9-like rocket.
  • Decouple the lander and perform a direct throw TLI to get to the Mün.
  • Perform a soft landing in the Canyons North of the Farside Crater as close to the actual landing site as possible.

Map.png

  • Perform some experiments. 
  • Post a video* showcasing your successful mission on this thread or on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram with the hashtags #NovaCChallenge and #Contest. (Remember to show the coordinates of the location where you have landed).
    *Videos should not contain any music that you do not personally own. 
    (KSP in-game music is ok, just no adding in extra music unless it's something that you created and own the rights to. Licensed music, cover songs, "copyright free" music, etc. is not allowed.)
     

Scoring details:

  • Up to 30 Points for a realistic Nova-C recreation. (appearance, size, and mass all matter)
  • 20 Points for decoupling and performing a direct throw TLI to get to the Mün.
  • Up to 40 Points for landing safely at the right location.
  • 2 Points for each experiment you bring with you and perform. (Maximum of 20 points)
  • 20 Additional points if you perform a vertical takeoff, cruise, and landing to another location of the Mün after you have arrived at your first destination.
  • 30 Additional points if you safely land the Falcon 9-like rocket on Kerbin.
  • In the event of a tie, the winner will be determined by a panel of judges. 
     

Mods are NOT allowed. Cheats are NOT allowed.
This challenge is intended to be completed in Stock KSP. This means players can not utilize DLC or any other add-ons to complete the challenge. Add-ons are classified as any original or derivative work intended to expand another work by adding or replacing files. (Including, but not limited to: informational mods, visual mods, autopilot mods, and utility mods) We are allowing the use of custom flags only.

Note: Please make sure to maintain a copy of your saved game as you may be asked to submit it for further review.

You have until March 23rd, 2022, to complete the challenge. The winner will be announced on March 31st, 2022. One grand prize winner will win a trip to Houston, TX to join the Intuitive Machines team in mission control for the real Nova-C moon landing. The winner will also get a tour of the Intuitive Machine spacecraft production facility while they’re there! Airfare and a 2-night, 3-day stay at Hilton Houston NASA Clear Lake for the winner are included.

Good luck!


OPEN ONLY TO LEGAL RESIDENTS OF THE FIFTY UNITED STATES AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. MUST BE AT LEAST 18 YEARS OF AGE. CONTEST BEGINS AT 9:00 AM PT ON MARCH 1, 2022, AND ENDS AT 11:59 PM PT ON MARCH 23, 2022. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED SUBJECT TO THE OFFICIAL RULES LOCATED AT http://bit.ly/kspnovacchallengerules



Wireframe images:

Wireframe-1.jpgWireframe-2.jpg

Wireframe-3.jpgWireframe-4.jpg

Wireframe-5.jpgWireframe-6.jpg

Additional Nova-C images/ size specs:

Nova-C 2.jpg

Nova-C 1.jpg

Oh my god I'm in!

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