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What did you do in KSP today?


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After quite a few weeks, maybe even months, of hoping and waiting, I can finally do this.... Use Extraplanetary Launchpads (with > 90% of its parts deleted though) together with Wild Blue, without my game breaking.

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And I had a little more ultrasonic fun...

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The Engineers at Hypernova industries have claimed that the Mighty Lawn Dart, a recent SSTO that is capable of getting kerbals into a close flyby of the Mun (an achievement that has never been performed before in kerbal history) will be ready to launch by this saturday. This craft will be launched into orbit where it will detach, the first booster stage will then fly down and attempt to land using the brain of an ant, whilst the second stage piloted by Jebediah Kerman (Kraken save Bob who is taking this historic flight with him) will be be sent off into a close flyby of the Mun, some of the engineers are debating on adding some more fuel tanks to the 2nd stage so that they could land on the Mun, rather than fly by it.

 

However, most scientists, including the board, believe that the mission should be postponed till we figure out how to slap some metal wires between rocket parts to stabilize it, a technology that has been stated to only be in the realms of imagination.

Edited by Planetace
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A few days ago the Three Amigos wanted to ride out to a geostat sat in their Peregrine SSTO.  Werner told 'em, "then you ain't coming home for supper tonight, boys...".

He was korrekt: they managed it back down to a periapsis of 530km before running out of gas, leaving Jebby, Billy and Bobby stranded in a highly-elliptical orbit.  The tug boys had to go out with a load of jerry cans and not the first time.

So it's been overtime ever since, over in R&D, working on the new NerfJet: same plush, leather seats, fully-stocked bar and karaoke machine, but 4x NERVs instead of 4x Rapiers.  It's supposed to be great for zipping around in the busy LKO corridors and packs enough fuel to go as far as Duna.  Mebbe.  That's without a fuel pack.  Saddled up it'll probably go anywhere in the system in comfort.

But get this: those big wig, hot shots wanted wings on it!!  Sheesh.  The thing is so lame it has to go to space atop a launcher or with a F.A.R.T (Forward-Assisting Rear-mounted Thruster) behind it.  And then it's going to spend the rest of its life in space.  It does land though and mighty purty, too, as long as you keep it going in the general direction of Down.

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Lands on its tail on the Mun, with gear already extended so it can be dropped gently into the horizontal position for easier passenger egress.  To return to orbit, find a good, smooth hill and use it as a launch ramp.

["You shouldn't be thinking about landing this kontraption anywhere," Werner kept telling them, "just DOCKING!!"]

...and, yeah, I know: this is the twin-engined NerfJet 4 pictured.  The fifth generation, NerfJet 5, went to a 4-banger coz the boys hate to wait when they are going places.

And this is what the R&D fellers originally pitched to Billy, Bob and Jeb:  NerfJet 1...

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Do you think that would fly with those boys!?...  Heck, naaah

Edited by Hotel26
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Well following the loss of the first Duna lander a duplicate was created, given more of a science payload and a scientist to ride it, launched into LKO.

A drone version of F2, dubbed F3 with all the imagination that required, was launched, its after payload ports carrying a small Ike lander and a mineral scan sat also for Ike in preparation for a fuel mining mission.

Docked together and boosted for Duna.

Used Ike to help brake, slowing to just enter Ike orbit, to drop the two satellites off, then dropping to Duna low orbit, all fine so far.

Lander undocked and initiated its descent, despite being basically the same as the first it handled differently, the first had a slight tendency to rotate, which here became more than RCS could handle causing some damage on landing when a leg fell off - fortunately we landed on a slight slope and the balance was just right to be upright.

 

SCIENCE!!

 

then the lift off, problem right after takeoff, the SAS refused to engage properly at all, didn't get the marker to select stability hold though the light for SAS came on showing the icon for the wheels being active - however not a sausage, the scientist managed to get back to space but combined with the thing tumbling and spinning madly burned way too much fuel so unable to attain a stable orbit.

 

Scratch a second lander and scientist as they crashed back to Duna...

 

The drawing board is getting used a fair bit, but its an interesting challenge to learn how to make this work

 

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22 hours ago, Delay said:

-snip-

(INTERMISSION: I'm trying to find a backronym for "Falcon" to justify calling it that. I ended up with "... Landing Capable Orbiter Necessity", and I can't think of anything for F and A. Any ideas?)

-snip-

Freakily Advanced?

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When I landed my rover on Vall yesterday I wanted to say that I now had a rover on every solid body in the Kerbol system, but then I realized that that really wasn't the case. I didn't have one on Gilly, for instance, but it wouldn't be practical to put one there due to its incredibly low gravity (I've got a spare mining lander with scientific instruments that I can put on Gilly's surface instead) but I also didn't have one on Ike or Eve. I had a stationary probe floating in one of Eve's oceans, but no wheeled rover on the surface, despite having one ready and waiting at Gilly station for ages. So I figured now was as good a time as any to land it.

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The lander is my old Moho-class design, slightly modified with an atmospheric analyzer and increased battery capacity (since it take a lot of power to transmit the data from an atmospheric analyzer back to Kerbin.)

I've also launched a new rover for Ike, but it's currently parked at Minmus Station waiting for a transfer window to Duna. I'll post screenshots once it's actually underway.

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10 hours ago, JadeOfMaar said:

In a corner of the galaxy where the celestials are so colorful one would think the celestials themselves are snacks.

Well, Kerbals are still unconvinced Minmus isn’t a dessert, so... :ph34r:

 

it’s bad enough running out of likes for the day, but waking up out of likes? Come on! :huh:

 

Edited by CatastrophicFailure
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Since I was able to get the update & DLC this morning, I will be continuing on a normal science mode save to gradually run through all the new parts to get a feel for them before starting a 1.4.1 career.  I thought that would be  a better learning experience than sandbox where I get them all dumped on me at once

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Built myself a lander with some of the new parts and landed Jeb on the Mun for the first time in a long time.

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Funnily enough, I was going to use the 1-Kerbal Vostok ball, but decided against it because of the small amount of ablator. Turns out I only used up 10 out of 100 on the heat shield thanks to maneuvers, and the ball had 20.

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1 minute ago, CatastrophicFailure said:

Yeah but I bet that easy listening station from Alpha Centauri comes in crystal clear. :cool:

It's even somewhat mobile, just be care with your airspeed!

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Omega 3 Ion Drive under development:

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32 Dawn engines (up from 24); added 16 fuel cell arrays; will be designing a light-weight "aerial" for 14 Gigantor panels (comes separately); added a medium-amount of LFOX for stand-alone capability; probably adjusting the number of Xenon tanks from 24 to a final number of 32.  (Gots to keep up with the newcomers to the market!  :) )

Edited by Hotel26
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First, Venera 1 was the first probe to enter Venus's atmosphere... without burning to a crisp, anyways.

Spoiler

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Even the lunar reentry-rated heatshield got toasty, approaching its heat limits as it slammed into Venus's upper atmosphere at > 10 km/sec. And yes, I had to quickload a few times to get the kOS script (basically: lock to retrograde and retract antenna until speed drops to 190 m/sec). Max G-loading reached 25G.

Spoiler

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I had a curious effect I've never had with Earth/Kerbin/Gael reentries, where bled speed like mad in upper atmosphere, until velocity dropped so far that G-loading went below 0.5G for a couple minutes until I dipped further into Venus's atmosphere. Kind of a double-reentry thing.

The antenna burned off at some point as I hit hotter atmosphere close to Venus's surface. I was more concerned at the time with the fact that I didn't have line-of-sight to Earth... not only meaning no science transferred, but the atmospheric probe contract wasn't fulfilled.

Spoiler

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The probe body survived down to hit the surface at about 20 m/sec. Without a parachute. Venus's atmosphere is that thick.

 

Second, I launched what I call the He-2 booster (the Hebrew letter He, not helium!) with a customary mass simulator. This is basically an F-1A stuck underneath a closed-cycle NK-43 engine. The NK-43 is one of very few engines I've used that can throttle, in this case all the way down to 50% thrust... which is nice for the last few seconds of its burn, since TWR at SECO is very, very high.

Spoiler

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I do have a design I called the "Dalet" which looks a bit hilarious: it's the He-2 upper stage flanked by a pair of large SRBs. Unfortunately, non-procedural SRBs seem to be rather expensive in RP-0: the mighty F-1A is cheaper than a 180-ton SRB. Haven't tried the procedural SRBs yet.

 

Voyager 5 flew by the last of the Galilean moons, Europa.

Spoiler

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Fun facts: NASA plans to send the Europa Clipper mission on multiple flybys of Europa. An orbiter was considered, but it'd actually likely return less valuable data than the planned multiple-flyby. Europa's close enough to Jupiter's colossal magnetosphere to have orbiters fried in short order. This is an issue when even a powerful antenna transmitting to the gigantic radio telescopes of the Deep Space Network have pretty limited bandwidth. Instead, NASA plans to have the Clipper spend most of its time in a distant Jovian apoapsis, transmitting back data from many flybys.

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It's also what I would consider the smallest of the large moons. Europa is larger than the combined sum of all other known bodies smaller than it: it seems like there's a pretty big gap between Europa and the next largest known body.

Also: probable subsurface ocean, possible subterranean life, etc. Europa is a very interesting moon!

 

Voyager III, in orbit of Saturn, flew by another very interesting moon, Titan! This is the only other known body to have liquid oceans (composed of hydrocarbons such as ethane). Additionally, it has a very thick atmosphere: between its low gravity and high atmospheric density, aerodynamic flight should be quite easy.

Spoiler

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While it looks... boring from orbit due to atmosphere obscuring surface details, it is a very peculiar moon. The Cassini mission deposited the Huygens lander on its surface: as far as I know, this is the only mission to land on a moon not our own. NASA has also recently green-lighted an RTG-powered quadcopter to study Titan's surface. I don't know if it has a laser instrument, but if so, it'll surpass the Curiosity rover in terror: not only a nuclear-powered laser-wielding death robot, but a flying nuclear-powered laser-wielding death robot. At least Curiosity you can outrun!

I also unintentionally flew inside the narrow gap between the A and F rings. I generally try to avoid flying through rings, because I'm pretty sure that's realistically instant-probe-death due to all the dust, but I didn't pay close enough attention to the inbound leg of this 55 Mm pass over Saturn. I also noticed near periapsis that Saturn's rings cast shadows on Saturn itself and vice-versa.

Spoiler

 

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I should've set HGA to RAM before the A-F gap pass, now that I think about it. One final image, this time near apoapsis: Saturn eclipsing the Sun. Only 15 years until I can see a similar eclipse at periapsis!

Spoiler

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Other than that: at the next Venus transfer window, I have a lot of stuff ready to go to be absolutely sure I get that atmospheric probe contract. Four copies of Venera 1, a set of 3 relays (launched on the same vehicle), and a biome scanner.

Might be a few days, though: tomorrow I'll be installing "Surviving Mars" and trying that game out.

Edited by Starman4308
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1 hour ago, Hotel26 said:

 (Gots to keep up with the newcomers to the market!  :) )

I'm trusting you're not referring to me as I'm no newcomer! lol

 

A note for you:
Out past Duna, those Gigantor solar panels really drop in output. You're going to need to compensate for the power loss. RTGs are ok for 'a few' ions, but with the count you're using the weight won't be worth it. You might want to take a look at the Fuel Cell / Fuel Cell Array, which is what I'm using.

I forget who put this together, but I saved it... I think it's still valid.
Solar Panel Power Output

Spoiler

OX-STAT
Moho: ~1.5
Eve: 0.64
Kerbin: 0.33
Duna: 0.15
Dres: 0.03
Jool: 0.02
Eeloo: 0.01

OX-4L/W
Moho: ~7.5
Eve: 2.99
Kerbin: 1.54
Duna: 0.70
Dres: 0.15
Jool: 0.08
Eeloo: 0.03

Gigantor
Moho: ~110
Eve: 44.37
Kerbin: 22.90
Duna: 10.40
Dres: 2.30
Jool: 1.18
Eeloo: 0.41

 

Ok, on to the real reason for this post... my endeavor.

I've put together (resurrected) an ion power plant idea and run with it. I'm currently using it for two Jool manned mission (Bop-Pol & Vall). Today, I noticed some weirdness with one of the ships (Jool-Series-2-Vall) during its departure burn from Kerbin. Follow along...

Keep in mind, this is V1.2.2

In the first image below, you'll see several modules docked to the Ion power plant. The docking ports, both sides of whichever connection, are marked thus: RED = Crossfeed Disabled, GREEN = Crossfeed Enabled. The sections in green essentially are the power plant (everything to the right from the last red dot).
FyIZzUH.png

 

The weirdness is that during the burn, with the fuel cell array power plant enabled (turned on), the power plant is drawing oxidizer from the two forward fuel tanks (Jumbo-64 & X200-32), while drawing liquid fuel from one of the aft docked modules set of fuel tanks (that first cluster of Mk1s left of the antenna dishes). Like, what the hell?!?!? I've never run into this before. Refer to the second image below.
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I'm at a loss for an explanation for this. It shouldn't be happening, all the docking ports behind the power plant have crossfeed disabled. Just weird. The fix for this, was to finish the burn, juggle fuels to set things right, and then shut off all fuel tanks not belonging to the power plant.

I've also noticed that RCS can get used up in this manner too... which, word to the wise, before detaching a lander module make sure the RCS tanks are topped off.

 

If anyone has experienced this, do chime in. I don't know if this scenario happens in v1.3.x or the new v1.4.x ... so maybe somebody might want to check it out?

 

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Today I launched my tiniest launcher ever for a second test flight.

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Mr. Bill imposed to make the final check by himself and on the pad, defying all the safety rules established then.

Anyway... what could happen? Nothing dangerous.

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This is KSP after all... these little green men are so lucky.

 

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Powered by its single Thud, the first stage is able to kick the system to approx 1.2 km/s at 33 km before running out of fuel. Then a small Twitch got the task to complete the job with a ridiculous TWR of 0.8.

 

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The 0.5 t ridiculous payload on its way to Minmus. A good encounter with the Mun gave a nice assist to save around 30 m/s.

 

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Final result after a five days long travel.

What is fun? Yes. What is useful? No.

 

Also, the Mercury IV arrived at Duna after more than two and a half years.

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Tomorrow will be THE day of this travel. I can't wait to try it "in live".

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On ‎2018‎-‎03‎-‎01 at 4:00 PM, ph0gar said:

Just wondering what mod you used for the engine module.

Been out of the loop for a while, sorry for the very late response.
It's "[1.1.3] Ion-Hybrid Pack Revived!"

In fact I had downloaded My version wayyyyyyyyyyyy back in 0.23 I think.  if not before and I fixed it myself.
But you could start with that one and see how they do.

Good luck !

 

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