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What do you do with spent nuclear rocket stages?


oberlerchner123
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That's offensively horrible. How dare you even think of such a thing without considering the Kerbal-School-System is always next door to the bacon factory. I don't care about the children but no one nukes bacon.

As for me, I usually leave my spent stages wherever they're spent. Interplanetary orbit is most common. Some are in orbit of Jool/Duna, and others are in random orbits around Kerbol. I really don't put any effort into retrieving anything, even Kerbals. They knew what they signed up for.

I only worry about stuff in Kerbin orbit, particularly LKO, because I know with my luck, I'd beat the odds and get hit by something.

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That's offensively horrible. How dare you even think of such a thing without considering the Kerbal-School-System is always next door to the bacon factory. I don't care about the children but no one nukes bacon.

As for me, I usually leave my spent stages wherever they're spent. Interplanetary orbit is most common. Some are in orbit of Jool/Duna, and others are in random orbits around Kerbol. I really don't put any effort into retrieving anything, even Kerbals. They knew what they signed up for.

Oh, you've got me all wrong. I line the school children up outside the vegetable farms. All Kerbal's know that destroying precious snacks (such as bacon) is a punishable offense with a heavy sentence... becoming a Kerbonaut.

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I don't think I've ever had to de-orbit a nuke in Kerbin's atmosphere.

I've crashed a few there by mistake though!

Most of mine are either harmlessly in orbit or else smashed on the airless surfaces of the Mun (or more recently, Moho.)

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Just drop 'em wherever. It's not like the Kerbals are too concerned about safety anyway.

Edit: Oh, and here's a fun one:

The lunar module burned up in Earth's atmosphere on April 17, 1970, having been targeted to enter over the Pacific Ocean to reduce the possibility of contamination from a SNAP 27 radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) on board. Intended to power the mission's ALSEP, the RTG survived re-entry (as designed) and landed in the Tonga Trench. While it will remain radioactive for several thousand years, it does not appear to be releasing any of its 3.9 kg of radioactive plutonium-238.[37]

(Concerning Apollo 13's LEM, Aquarius)

During my graduation work, we did among other things research into the effects of radioactive release from dumped Soviet nuclear submarine reactors (and entire submarines, including nuclear weapons).

We indeed found that there was no risk, any radiation released would be dispersed so much so rapidly it would not cause adverse conditions for wildlife or humans (including the fisheries in the surrounding area).

Suffice to say we found it impossible to get the report published, scientific data showing something that the "green" movement doesn't like to hear is not welcome.

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In my most recent save I've ben playing very seriously, testing unkerballed drones before risking any lives and abort systems for everything (though drones that usually means cut engines and plummet). My objective is no deaths, no waste of life or materials. Step by patient step my Kerbals are proving themselves worthy of inheriting the stars.

Nuclear engines are equipped with parachute (just in case) and can eject from a craft in the case of a launch abort. Assuming nothing Kerbal happens on the way up each nuclear engine pod has drone control and docking port so they can be dismounted and recovered for return to Kerbin via shuttle. Or alternatively refurbished at an orbital depot (when I build it!).

The nuclear pods are used on the mun taxi to ferry landers and other materials to the mun and beyond. Later deeper space missions will use those pods and hopefully return their precious cargo to Kerbin safely.

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People sometimes are overreacting about radioactive materials ... before WWII uranium was used to color glassware :rolleyes:.

vaselineuv.jpg

I'm not really recommending using uranium glass.

Nuclear engines don't need to be ditched every mission, they can be reused, especially if you want run regular cargo missions between planets

NTRdpsr.png

You can use single docking port if You going to ditch fuel tank (also no need of transferring fuel during burn).

Edited by karolus10
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I'd be more worried about the expense of having them break up, considering fuel-grade nuclear material isn't cheap.

Actually, it feeds them. Why don't they need food out there in space? Their bodies are fueled by cosmic radiation!

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