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What did you do in KSP today?


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First, LKO = Low Kerbin Orbit?

Second, yesterday, I got my "massive" (relatively speaking, I know, but its the largest thing I've built and put ANYWHERE other than Kerbin) Kethane orbital platform into Minmus orbit. ... with an acceleration maxed out to just 4m/s without it falling in on itself (TY MJ!).



First came up the K1 Truss from good ol' 0.20 version of the Fustek truss set (Not included in the 0.23 version, but a simple copy of the part is all I needed). The rear engine is permanent, the nose cone has just a standard docking port for just the mule I plan on building (Of course, developed in the standard "no pen-to-paper" ideology) as well as a single RTG just so I never lose power or control, then I built and attached the two orange tanks on the front. In hindsight, I should have built in the ability to remove the engines from the tanks since they're kind of a permanent fixture, and I didn't need to move them around. I could upgrade, but meh... This was all yesterday...


Then came the Kethane refineries. With some testing on a mobile platform, which consisted of the final Kethane tank you see and an extra tank and drill, and a lot of mucking with the Kethane Debugger to get Kethane under the launch pad, verified that with the use of the TAC Fuel Balancer I could transfer from the smallish tank on the refinery to additional separate tank. I just had to set the tank on the refinery to OUT, and the rest would take care of itself. No fuel lines, and no KAS. I'm somewhat intending this to be a "Kerballess" mission. No photos of the mock up.

The refinery consists of 6 Kethane tanks, 3 Kethane electrical generators, RCS, the large Kethane converter, MJ, and Sr Docking ports at both ends. There are two sets of these. You'll notice that all my parts have the large RCS tanks. Why the extra weight? My Kethane Mule is probably going to run off of RCS, and I suck(ed) at docking, so confidence wasn't all that high, on top of that, I wanted to keep the large theme going and there are no smaller variants of RCS tanks that'd fit the theme and fit within the confines of the small amount of room between the tank pedals(?). My main lifter brought everything up with ease, so why not?

After I got the refineries and tanks connected, time for testing. I slammed on the gas and started to push this thing, I found out about this cool thing called Physics.... The K1 truss just pushed right through. The two tanks and two refineries bent back like pedals on a flower and proceeded to blow up. Eventually figured out MJ is going to be useful. I first limited the throttle to 10% thrust, then I tried throttling to 2m/s acceleration, but, that was just not going to do. Just too slow.

So then came building the reinforcements. I wanted something light, easy to lug around on the initial launch, and be useful instead of just having simple trusses with laser struts. Up came the idea of throwing more Kethane tanks. So now there are 8 additional tanks. After first launch, my delivery vehicle still had 3/4 of fuel left, so, I topped off the tanks on this station, then let the last 1/8th bring the remaining delivery tank to its final descent back to Kerbin. But, knowing I needed THREE MORE and knowing how much fuel I had left after this burn, I decided to put all three together on one trip up. So came up with this bad boy....


*facepalm* No flacid jokes, OK?


So rebuilt...


Perfectly successful launch. Two of them I manually docked, the third, just let MJ handle it for the most part, and had about 1/4 tank of fuel left in my final stage of the lifter. However, I was having so much fun with the docking, I had to destroy the lifter as I didn't have any electrical power. ... lots of gas though.

So with the fuel tanks full, electrical charge at max, Kethane tanks hungry, I started my tests again to see how much better this thing is. The strength doubled, on initial launch I was able to get to 4m/s acceleration, but once the orange tanks were empty, I could get to 5m/s. Everything BARELY held together, but I could see the Sr Docking ports wanting to leave the K1 truss AND the attached component (Tanks/Refineries).


At the end of the push, this is what I had left


So.. This thread is about what I did TODAY? Well, first, I saw this thread then synced my KSP from my home machine to my work machine, then, launched KSP, and started to work on my land based Kethane mining crawler. On the launch pad, I was hitting a very generous less than 1 frame per second while sitting on the launch pad testing. Toned down all the graphical settings to absolute minimum and tried again. Around 10fps. Gonna have to do. I came up with this:


I still need to figure out how this thing is going to fly, or, if I should scrub it and start over again and go with something more traditional (If there is such thing in KSP). I put this to the test on the launch pad and the two generators, plus 20 RTGs underneath this beast, put the generators at about 80% consumption while working away. One problem I found (And I blame this particular PC) is that it seems to be overweight and easily breaks the wheels when just coming off the launch pad. So who knows. I might posts what I did today tomorrow! .. if I remember....

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I finally start to design my concept "Science Exploration Buggy" for my career mode videos. I decided to try to use the new science lab in an unconventional way, while this design is unmanned the actually one will have a crew and a command capsule for help in landing. My original idea was to leave the lab on mun and return with all the science in the capsule, but after landing this on Mun I believe I can make a return voyage with the lab and all the reports intact. I designed this off the old Go-Bots command center LOL. I am not 100% sure it will work as I am thinking, but my hope is that I will be able to make it work the way I want.


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FOS-020 "Starshock" made the second of three runs up to IPEV Voyager's current parking orbit to retrieve the shakedown crew.



While the Fast-Orbit Shuttles do live up to their name, it has been discovered that they are not only less maneuverable than the previous AACT ships, but carry less crew per run as well. There has been talk around the Center of attempting to revive the M/AACT program for this year's Voyager support ops.

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Launched the Tylo science base. Structural failure or staging mishap, there will have to be an investigation commitee, should be done in a couple of years. Right now what we know is that when we staged the last of the outer ring, the booster section also decoupled or broke off. There was reportedly also this exchange:

Bill Kerman: "The booster section is not responding and the transfer stage is firing. Preparing for abort sequence!"

Jebedia Kerman: "Even if I knew what 'abort' meant, there's nothing in the checklist about this. Let her burn. We are on our way to Jool baby!"

Got a 1,931k apoapsis. We can work with this.


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After a completely failed aerobrake at Laythe, Bill convinced Jeb that there really was such a thing as giving up. Contingency plan calls for the 4 to abandon ship and get in the Tylo return stage and try to get a Jool orbit. Fredlas insisted that he should go down with the ship but Bob punched him right in the face.


Currently putting a call to Laythe Science Station. "You guys aren't gonna believe this, but you remember that meteor that flashed past at 6000m/s? That was us! We're gonna be staying there for a while, might need a ride. It's cool, we can stay in the space planes."


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Today was a productive day!

I made myself a new kind of rover that can be much easier to transport! (Using infernal robotics to make it foldable)


And i put my first lander unit on Dres! (Whit precise landing maneuvers to get into the middle of a crater)


I feel like a boss today :D!

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I used my test career mode to tweek the science buggy because I realized I didn't have the small 3 meter tank unlocked yet. While this is not the official design it is nearly what it should look like. I will land like a normal lander and then tip to the landing gear underneath. I has some RCS blocks to provide some forward movement, although my sandbox save did not need this to move around. The goal is to go to as many biomes as I can in one mission and return with all the science, minus the crew reports as those can be sent back over the antenna without a penalty.


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Unexpected blessing in disguise: Managed to get my 30t transfer stage into orbit, but when planning to dock my lander waiting there, I noticed I decoupled (staged) the docking port during its launch, so I was left with a lander that wasnt able to get anywhere ... so I used it to do a test landing - which revealed a. the small thrusters did not provide any thrust and just heated up the big heat shield several meters below them, b. the parachutes were placed in a way that made the lander land head first, c. parachutes were able to rip the ship apart when they are fully deployed - so I launched a new one.

Next up is the transfer of the remaining crew from the Kerbin explorer to the interplanetary ship.

Still no special fuel (Kethane) for the nukes available, time is running short for that transfer window.

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Today I learned that getting out and pushing is really a real thing in KSP. Saved my Hudemy and over 3,300 science.

Zero fuel and a periapsis over 800,000m.


Pushing with all his jetpack's might!







So yeah, getting out and pushing can work wonders ladies and Gentlemen.

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I built some sort of Kopernicus DTV thing (that's not what I actually named it). I have no idea how well it'll function as a tug, but it'll do Duna and back with a 30-ton payload.


Think I'll send a station out there next.

Also, I took stock of LKO and all my active flights today, and I am amazed at how well the game is running in 0.23 (31 flights in progress plus one flag). In previous versions my computer would have been lagging by now. I even have a vehicle sitting around the KSC grounds, which used to be a big no-no. Yes, I know this isn't as crowded as some people like but for me it's a lot of stuff (some of it is around Duna and Jool, not depicted).


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Just had my first 'out of kerbin' docking... Launched my manned ships to Duna and Eve around 100 days after each other... They more or less arrived at the same time, aerobraking at 2 planets can be stressfull! :). After that both had to dock with a refueler!

Landed on Gilly, Duna and Ike! :)

Now return to Kerbin! It would be my first manned-return mission out of the Kerbin system!

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After some further testing the Science Exploration Buggy has been scrapped until a better design, and more parts, is available. While in theory it should have worked, once on Mun, on the test save, things proved much more difficult than expected. It was a great idea though, use the science lab as a rover and travel to other biomes in one mission and return with all the science collected. So plan B is to use detachable science jr bays and retrieve the science before jettisoning them off before the return home.

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No cool pictures, but today I performed 3 rocket launches with an audience of 30 6th graders. Woo! It was a massive hit, and covered a good half dozen of the specific learning objectives from the grade 6 program of studies.

Basically the goal is to show them what a stable orbit looks like, and how the mechanics behind how an object behaves while it's in orbit. Along the way, with some diliberatly failed launches we learned about air resistance, drag, parabolic arch's, and why stability is important.

I really wish the arodynamic systems worked more realistically. It would make the flight unit an absolute ton of fun rather than just making a bajillion paper airplanes. I could probably convince my principal to spring for at least a few .edu licenses if I could make it work for that unit.

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Well I made my Mun Science Lander for my upcoming career mode manned Mun mission and return. I tested it on my career test save to make sure it would work as I thought it should, and it did better than I thought it would. I believe I will do the episode tomorrow and post it sometime either tomorrow or Wednesday.

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I'm kicking myself for not taking any screenshots, but today was another eventful day of derping and derping while I try to clean up from derping.

I developed a new lift rocket - fairly straightforward - with which I brought a fuel tanker to my station. So I transferred the leftover fuel from the rocket into the tanker (hey, it's free fuel, right?)... but wait. I went and transferred ALL of it. So no fuel left to deorbit the lifter with.

Thus I did what I did last time - build a cleanup rocket to bring it back down! But I haven't unlocked structural panels on this save, so I end up building a huge claw out of those airplane tail things. And it takes four tries to get it into orbit. And then I finally encounter the empty lifter... and run out of RCS fuel. So very Kerbal-like I went ahead anyway and just rammed the thing, breaking a piece (miraculously only one) off my ship but still managing to muscle the thing down to a low periapsis.

And thus my lift rocket was saved! And my brain fried.

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My Duna lander is docked to the interplanetary ship and the crew is onboard - not without difficulties of course:

Flew a crew transport (one pilot only, 4 of 5 seats free) up to my Kerbin Explorer to ferry the guys over to the new ship - there were five guys in there, so what to do ... docked the ferry to the Explorer, moved all fuel as far back as possible and pushed the whole thing along.

The time of my launch was poorly chosen, so the Duna Ship was on the other side of Kerbin. To safe on the remaining fuel, I lowered my orbit just above the atmosphere and circled myself closer to the Duna Lander. Arriving only to notice, that the first half of the Duna crew was sent up with the lander, so again no free seat for the odd guy from the explorer ...

Luckily I had not detached the orbital stage of my lander yet, so I circled again and docked the lander to its ship first, then went back and fly the rest of the crew over.

(At some point the cockpit of the Explorer had detached itself from the rest of the ship, not during flight, but when switching over it was drifting a few hundred meters apart from itself ... I meddled with the pods in my game to have built in decouplers ... I just hope this does not happen again ... *eyeballs Duna Ship*)

After deorbiting as much as possible and getting the pilot of the ferry back home, a probe carrier was sent three days early in preparation for the manned mission to Duna - this went almost to well ...

Still no solution to the missing Kethane and lack of nearby deposits.

Who, in Kerbols name, is responsible for this kerbed mission planning! :P

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Finally got some time to do some proper KSP'ing, so I filled a hole in my space program's capabilities - a space station and a functioning shuttle!


The station is fairly primitive right now. It's essentially a cupola, a hitchhiker, a science lab and a life support system. Includes a reactor and backup PVs for life support/science requirements as well as a long range escape pod. Will eventually be expanded with some fuel tanks for re-fuelling long range missions.

The mk II spaceplane 'Daedalus' was a fairly successful construction. Can carry about 10 tons into, and back out of orbit with little ballast correction of fuel required. Has a fairly simple orbit and de-orbit sequence and enough delta-V when laden to go to Minmus and back. It's going to be the service vehicle for orbiting satellites and the space station.

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