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What did you do in KSP today?


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The high point of my career today was my Moho probe finally arriving.  The low point was the jettisoned LES tower destroying a launch vehicle in probably the most ironic failure to reach space ever.  Details in mission reports

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Debris plus the surprisingly intact Mk2 pod after the LES tower rapidly disassembled the rest of the launch vehicle.  I'm not 100% certain, but I believe the object in the distance above the Mk2 pod is the still-intact LES tower

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Also had an early attempt at a spaceplane - which USED TO make orbit since at least KSP 1.5 but suddenly isn't wanting to in 1.8.1.  EDIT:  I found the issue - an extra fuel tank in the nose and the short structural fuselage & aerodynamic nose cone on the back of the NERV's.  The Whiplash-powered version was the only one tested with those two changes, and had no problem.  But the Panther-powered version doesn't have enough thrust for the extra mass.  Without the extras, it can make orbit just like it used to, with around 1000 m/s remaining in a 75km orbit.

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Edited by Cavscout74
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Did this yesterday's afternoon. But by nigh, I got fed up with some KSP 1.8 idiosyncrasies and then redid it on KSP 1.7. :D

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It's my KSP 1.7.1 version for the Leduc 0.21 (insane) ramjet aircraft. And not, you are not seeing things - the cockpit is indeed attached into the kraken damned air intake!!! You fly the thing from a ramjet's intake! Ejection seats? For what? :sticktongue:

This is what you get by allowing Jebediah to design aircrafts!!

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9 hours ago, Saturn5tony said:

Wow guys! All of you above me are making some seriously awesome starships and multiwheel crafts! Me, still a beginner, I'll put my lame rockets up with a plane here or there but I do love to show it.

Don't whip yourself too hard.  In that mothership of mine there isn't lots of stock parts.  You could make some pretty wicked stuff if you had access to the same stuff...
For the rest, as long as you keep playing, you keep getting better ;) 

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I spent about 3 hours in KSP last night and didn't build any new ships or conduct any missions.  Yet I am inordinately pleased with my achievements.

I now have a kOS script that boots when the vessel loads and checks to see if a mission file is saved on the craft.  If there is, it displays the data and asks if you want to use it or create a new file.  If there's no file or you want a new one it runs through some menus to ask the destination (body), task (Orbit, Dock, LandAt or LandOn), then if you've selected Dock or LandOn it lets you pick a target to dock with around/on the target body.  Tonight's task will be add in a lat/long for LandAt.

Once the mission file is created it's stored on the vessel for future reusue on loading, along with a code for the current status of the mission, which gets updated as the mission progresses.  Depending on the mission status when loading, it then runs through Launch and circularisation.  Plan is it will then transition to the selected body and land or dock as per the status file, updating the mission status code and autosaving between each major step so when a vessel already in space loads it knows what it's supposed to be doing, with the option to change it's mission via the menus.

This is more complex to write but hopefully simpler to operate (and debug thanks to the autosaves and mission status) than my old system from my 1.7 game that loaded a mission script based on the name of the ship, and had me renaming ships in space in order to get them to conduct different tasks.

I'll still need enter a few more parameter's, but I'm hoping I can keep it to a minimum, the tricky one will be trying to derive a suitable initial turn angle based on TWR and anything else that looks sensible for the gravity turn launch,

Sadly none of this makes for exciting screenshots for this thread though.

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I love rovers. But Eve is an enigma. It'll break your rovers unless heavily fortified. And then, the rover is heavier, slower and doesn't get far on the planet, especially since much of it has Explodium seas and lakes.

While I'd love to go the full "Dragonfly" route as NASA and Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab will do in going to Titan, I realized that Eve is really much like Titan, atmospherically. The thick atmosphere would make flight work fine, provided you could power your propeller rotors.

Come "Breaking Ground," the option for electric rotors came. I haven't worked out a Dragonfly option but for Eve, here's my next best thing: The Hummingbird.

A simple Twin-Boar booster put a nuclear-powered cruise stage with the flying rover into Eve orbit. The dV was perfect; nothing was wasted.

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Entry and stability are great. On separation from the heat shield, avoiding recontact was a challenge. I later updated the craft with Separatons to push the heat shield away.

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Hummingbird takes off with as little speed as 40 m/s. Flies great. An RTG was added but it's not really required; solar power was sufficient.

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The rover arm is a nice touch but is also optional. Used the medium one because it is a challenge to get the vehicle C/M and CoL right with the colossal OP-E.

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You can enjoy it yourself from KerbalX.

Edited by OrbitsR4Sissies
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(1.6.1) I've got the day off today, on account of my 43rd successful revolution around the Sun, so I figure I might as well give y'all a log report.

Not all that much happened the last 24 hours; the day began at the Tradidit Lestum Yards over Laythe, where station engineer Jubald Kerman climbed up into the station's cupola module long enough to transmit a crew report for contract. That job done, LSV House Corrino still in orbit over Dres began printing up a Boop-Boop 7w probe to replace the earlier Boop-Boop 7x that would have completed its intended mission had it the correct type of scanner loaded aboard; printing took all of eleven minutes for the ship's crew to complete. After beginning printing, the G-LOC 7a craft docked to Corrino departed the ship and began maneuvers to take it to LSV House Harkonnen also currently in Dres orbit. Owing to the massive difference between the inclination of the two ships (Corrino being in a retrograde orbit), the G-LOC had to flip its orbit first before burning to intercept - time to intercept was 36 minutes, with the craft coming within 0.02° of Harkonnen's orbital plane. The Boop-Boop 7w finished up next, and was released from Corrino's drydock after fueling. The probe burned to align with the target orbital plane first, and shortly thereafter the G-LOC reached its intercept point, where it burned to set a rendezvous with Harkonnen; flight time to rendezvous will be one hour and 42 minutes. The Boop-Boop then conducted a burn to put it in a 6,082.6 by 37 kilometer, 6.51° inclined orbit. It will reach apoapsis in 34 hours, at which point a final burn will take it to its target orbit. I have the right scanner type on the probe - confirmed it before getting to far along this time - so I should finish up that contract at that point.

I next turned my attention to the other Boop-Boop 7w probe over Dres, the one that was to establish a stationary orbit over a specific point; while I'd gotten it into the stationary orbit, I was pretty far off the target point, so I needed to figure out how much to drift the probe eastward. Having finished my calculations, I determined that an orbital period of 9 hours, 13 minutes and 59 seconds would put me over the correct spot, so I went ahead and burned the probe down to that period. At apoapsis, I'll re-establish the 9 hour and 40 minute stationary orbit and hopefully will find myself over the target point. I'll let y'all know if my math was correct or not...

With a group of colonists having been frocked at the C. P. Baker outpost on Laythe and a need for a second engineer at the Vermilion Block 380 outpost on Vall to complete an outpost expansion contract, I began printing up an Auk XIII single-passenger spaceplane; total construction time will be 83 minutes. The new crew included two engineers, so at this point I have one to spare. The plan is to get the engineer up to space station Laytheport, wait for a group of tourists I've got headed out that way to pick him up, head to Vall from there (tourists are headed that way too), then drop him off. Should work as long as I don't have any troubles with the plane (knock on wood). 

Finished up my day out on Ike with the India 2 rover, where I'd been commissioned to perform a temperature survey.

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At night of course. Only plus side to that is getting to use the night vision cameras, which admittedly makes for reasonably cool screenies. Still makes driving unnecessarily stressful...

I hit three waypoints on the survey for a total of about eleven kilometers driving. Had to quit to get back to doing my paying job before I could proceed to the fourth waypoint; haven't gotten to it yet, but it's the first thing on my agenda for the next session. Don't know if that will be today or not.

That's all I've got for today. Plan is to get the G-LOC to Harkonnen, dock up and get Harkonnen back to Kerbin, then deorbit the G-LOC; Corrino will remain in orbit over Dres to support space station construction operations there are complete. The Sleipnir A outpost on Dres is successfully cracking Xenon Gas at the moment; the thought to try and send some of that up to Harkonnen before she departs has already occurred to me, because I imagine the base will need to secure those operations while recovering from space station launches (she's only mining so much Ore, after all). I've got a colonist group that needs to head out to Minmus as well as the next interplanetary tourist mission to get underway; those flights will probably happen soon, and then I've got some survey missions on Duna and Eve to perform; those will have to wait for days where I don't have too much else happening. I'll let y'all know how everything goes and hope to have something more substantial to report next time, whether that's tomorrow or Thursday.

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I reached the next milestone in my career, with probes in orbit & landed on Eve - although Gilly got no love this time around.  Full report here

Vorona-Eve in orbit after dropping the lander

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Vorona lander

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Eve Pancake Lander splashed down in explodium sea

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And in other news, Jeb "borrowed" some engines we had for a test contract and managed to create a loophole in his punishment that he can only test fly new aircraft:

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Very lucrative day today. Put down five more listening posts on the Mun, so data is flowing to the orbital lab nicely now. Almost all of the major craters have a listening post now, minus the two highest-inclination ones. I had to add a third fuel tank to the design to reach the non-equatorial craters.

The training flight to Minmus also arrived back to Kerbin safely with all scientists immediately leveling up to 2-star. I'm thinking of automating the design. The cargo launch and refueling designs are already probe-controlled in order to cut down on pilot flight hours, but I might need a few relays because I have intermittent outages in low orbit even with the DSN on.

Only frakup was my very next launch sending those scientists up to the orbital lab and rotating the 0-star rookies back down to Kerbin for the next training flight... except just like two days ago, I forgot to stage the goddamn parachutes yet again. I must be getting too used to having the chutes set to the same stage as final booster separation, only to have no such thing on this particular craft design. Last quicksave was a couple of hours before the training flight's reentry, so I'm only one flight back. And for once, the game didn't crash during my entire session (crashed four times within two and a half hours yesterday; maybe I shouldn't be watching Youtube videos on my other monitor while playing KSP...?).

I also happened to launch this crew rotation mission so efficiently that the launch stage minus SRBs actually lasted me for the entire mission. I only dropped it on reentry. Made docking a bit tricky due to the off-balance weight distribution. 

Edited by Fraktal
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Faced with over a year to launch windows for either Eve or Duna, mission control greenlights a few basic money-making missions. Yuki, Tora and Jinx Kerman take a Munwolf VI lander to deliver a science package to a new Munar biome. The mission goes so well that everyone forgets to take photos, even when there proves to be enough fuel to re-route via Minmus on the return leg and pick up a few bonus data points there too. Everything, in fact, is going perfectly. Kiss the edge of kerbin's atmosphere, eject the engine... eject the engine... EJECT THE ENGINE? 

Well flarp. Turns out Munwolf VI has a heatshield but no decoupler. The capsule screams through the atmosphere, pointy-end first with the parachute glowing red - but somehow it doesn't blow up, and though the watery landing does destroy the engine and fuel tanks, the command pod and crew survive unscathed.

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The engineering team is severely reprimanded for this lapse and there are a number of green faces in that meeting.

With Pielab fast becoming a long-term orbital habitation, it's decided that a small crew rotation is in order. Keen to make amends for the questionable design of Munwolf VI in addition to showing off saving money, engineering puts forward a design for an ultra-budget orbital crew shuttle. This, they say, will cost nothing but the fuel, and everything else comes home!

It's hard to turn that down, so mission control agreed, and soon, the Freebird was jetting off the end of the runway into a spirited ascent. Switching to rockets at 20km, leaves the valiant little shuttle with about 400m/s in LKO - more than enough to rendezvous and dock with Pielab. With Tora now on Pielab and Lilly returning with the Freebird, the docking clamps are released and a retrograde burn is plotted to begin descent.

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...which goes well.

Turns out Freebird is mighty slippery when bingo fuel. The designers assured us they calculated the aerodynamics for a typical re-entry profile, and gave it several test fights over our secondary facility, but we're not entirely sure we believe them. Mission control decides to pretend that Freebird is still in orbit for technical reasons and hurries the news reporters off the runway before they start asking awkward questions.

(I think the Freebird's problem is that I doubled the length of the forward fuel tank at the last minute, but left the canards at the front. The CoM vs CoL was already quite tight, and by lengthening the neck and pushing those control surfaces forwards, it's probably dragged the latter on top of the former, leaving me with a plane that likes to flat spin when dry.)

Edited by eddiew
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Here is a link to my "Minimus 6 Voyager" I posted screenshots for last month. I was just looking at some old builds and realized this one has a lot of design quirks I made and I'm interested in any feedback on improvements.   I'd like to make something larger capable of landing and leaving planets with atmosphere.  This one was only designed to land and take off from bodies in vacuum (no atmosphere). 

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https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1933794735 (Steam Workshop Link)

 

Edited by championofcyrodiil
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Thoroughly embarrassed by yesterday's re-entry failures, the engineering team pulls and all nighter, at the end of which they have added a tailfin to completely redesigned Freebird.

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The additional lifting surfaces at the stern, coupled with more generous initial LF provision allows the mk2 to reach LKO with a similar 400m/s, with about 200 units of LF spare for manoeuvres upon return. Although in this case, the overprovision is unnecessary, since the Freebird manages a graceful glide all the way from 100km to sea level with nary so much as a wobble. 

We have handed out some stock photographs to the news reporters and explained that we were testing a new orbital maintenance system which may have slightly altered the appearance of the vessel vs the images they took at launch. 

Because that's better than saying the first once crashed.

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Played a bit of my Duna mission (my third manned Duna mission ever, and a first one in my second career playthrough, in case you're wondering why I'm building such Frankenships) and I realized I have (hopefully) both spare delta v and high-enough TWR on my transfer stage to land on Ike. So I did, and I've got to say I'm glad I don't have to spend the long wait for a transfer window back to Kerbin in that upside-down lander myself:

 

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(1.8.1) Just joking last night, and in my career mode, I decided to try a few of the simple parts that stock career has been giving me so far. So I made a ship called "Funny Joe 1" to blast into space and return... "safely"! It was not any contract, just a break away from those tasks, kinda like sandbox but only the stuff in level 4 of career. 

I look at this ship similar to the "Little Joe 1" Mercury rocket that was made back in the 60's. Got to 98km as well. Jeb, Bill and Bob had a great time, remembering those old days back at Nasa.

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Hmmm I wonder why the balance of that craft has not taken over the chuts? Shouldn't it be pointing down....lol

Whats funny is that I didnt think of that Mercury test ship until just setting this up on the forum today. I just made it to have fun. Here is a wiki pic I found of it.

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Little Joe 1 launch vehicle with Mercury capsule, August 1959

Edited by Saturn5tony
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Despite having slightly tweaked thoroughly redesigned the Freebird, when it comes time to actually send something up, engineering instead recommends a newer, lighter, cheaper model. This one, apparently, does everything we need, and does it better.

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Despite looking like a passenger aircraft with rockets on the side, engineering are largely correct. The Wren may only weight 16.3 tons, but she gets to orbit with the same 400 m/s in the tank as her predecessor. While two of the passenger seats and the docking port have been dropped, this sporty little number has excess SAS control and enough battery capacity to linger in Kerbin's shadow for months. Which makes it pretty good for rescuing the victims employees of other, less competent, space programs.

While the nose does get a little warm on descent, there's no sign of instability in the controls. If anything, there's too much. Wren goes where Wren wishes - but fortunately that is in the direction of its prograde marker, so for the most part this is good enough. Losing altitude is a bit of a problem, but there's enough LF left for a powered loop and return to the landing strip.

We give the engineering team a small nod of acknowledgement. This cost effective vessel goes some way towards making up for their recent gaffs, but we're not about to let them forget those either.

(There's actually a lot to be said for a conventional airframe like this; namely it's stable as heck. Most of the weight is in the middle, not the rear, so it's easy to get control surfaces to do something. Does it look as sleek and cool as a delta? No, probably not. Is it easier to fly? Almost certainly. I got to 5km before realising SAS was off. It was a wobbly ride that far, but the point is that it made it.)

Edited by eddiew
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10 minutes ago, DeadJohn said:

Tonight I used KSP to demonstrate concepts of rocket science, orbital mechanics, and space navigation to an astronomy club.

Sounds awesome. I wish someone would do that back in the county I grew up in (or in the astromechanics class I took in college last year).

 

I lost a couple of kerbalnauts to the Kraken today. They were last seen in a Mun Hopper SSTO in retrograde orbit of Minmus.

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Press F to pay respects.

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2 hours ago, Ratwerke_Actual said:

Finally, My 1.7.3 install of Realism Overhaul is up and running. Insisted on getting Scatterer and RSSVE running first.

 

To orbit in a FASA Atlas/Mercury.

 

Also in JNSQ, added a skybox from @JadeOfMaar, along with faint, Minmus flavored rings from Minmar Kerbin mod.

 

 

Those are some very nice looking screen shots!

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