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For Roleplayers: How do you dispose of the LV-N engines?


Markus Reese
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How do you dispose of the LV-N  

  1. 1. How do you dispose of the LV-N

    • Let them drift in space
      78
    • Park in close orbit
      14
    • Land on low G orbital body
      7
    • Recovery landing on Kerbin
      30


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I am a big time roleplayer for KSP to keep things interesting for me. With career mode, this has prolonged the time it has taken for me to complete the tree with my limited play time. Recently, I have started using the LV-N for interplanetary. Because I assemble the rockets in space, my LV-Ns are delivered by manned crafts and docked by probe control. The idea with this is almost a form of asparagus. When I get to my destination, I transfer the fuel from one set of tanks into another, then remove the empty. Well, that was the plan.

Anyways, I get to Gilly for this mission and sure enough, didn't quite use up half of the fuel getting there with a much lighter payload on the return without lander craft and fewer drive engines. So I start thinking to myself, I cannot just dump nuclear engines through Eve's atmosphere, that would be wrong. Suddenly I get the idea! I should make nuclear engine storage areas until I can get the tech up better to recover them properly. In this case, I parked them at my gilly landing location! When I get back to Kerbin system, I will lock them together in orbit around Minmus.

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How do you dispose of your LV-Ns?

Edit: Hrm, I changed it to be 5 poll questions, but it posted instead. I guess polls cannot be edited since I wanted to add "Crash and Burn" :-( Can moderators edit polls to add it or is it messed permanently?

Edited by Markus Reese
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My orbitally assembled crafts have one of two types of propulsion segments. Now, like you, dumping nukes into an atmosphere just seems wrong, so I do a few different things.

Some of my propulsion modules are the full tank and engines. For these, I usually leave them up for possible re-use later (really to big to land practically). Now, sometimes my engines are on docking ports (yep, just engine, possibly a cluster mount, and docking port). These are undocked. I then dock a parachute module to them and de-orbit them for safe recovery.

The last option I've only done once. I took the 18 nukes of a ship, took just the propulsion stage (and did this only because the phase angle was convenient) and headed out to Jool. I personally have no problem dumping NERVAs into a gas giant. :P

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I actually never used nukes yet. In my past sandbox saves, I didn't go interplanetary (heck, I haven't been to Minmus yet). And in my current carreer mode, I'm starting to send interplanetary probes, but have not unlocked any nukes yet (I have the Ftmn nuclear engine mod installed).

But I won't crash them on planets for sure. In the early stages of infrastructure development I might dump nuclear single-use stages into interplanetary space. In the really-long-term I was planning to create reusable 'Interplanetary Propulsion Units', basically nuke-powered probe ships with docking ports to carry the actual payload, which would stay in space indefinitly and be refueled by chemical rockets or spaceplanes. I didn't think about actually landing them back at Kerbin for recovery, but that is an interesting idea. Maybe my reusable nukes will get a limited lifetime (reactor fuel running out) and after that either become debris on a orbit, or be recovered. But first I need to unlock them :D

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Haven't used nukes for months now, but I am theoretically playing with the houserule that no nuclear device, once launched, may return to Kerbin without extensive recovery measures in place. Additionally every launch with nuclear components must be able to extract these components from the craft in case of an unexpected catastrophic launch failure. I'm still not sure how I will handle nukes, one-way interplanetary missions will probably just crash the nuke into the nearest body or leavy it orbiting for all eternity around Kerbol or some alien world. Nuclear drive cores of return missions, though, they will either be re-used or crashed into the Mun/Minmus. It will probably very interesting to build a ship that can brake into Kerbin's orbit without entering the atmosphere after an entire interplanetary mission.

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I haven't thought of it yet, as I've only sent out two NERVA powered ships. One is still at the Jool system, the other is docked to my space station, now serving as a museum. It can be recommissioned if needed for a rescue mission, so I'm unwilling to dispose of it just yet.

One option to consider, is to fuel it up, and send it into the sun. Similar to the Jool dump, but no need to wait for a launch window.

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I understand not wanting to dump spare nukes on Kerbin, but I don't see the problem with disposing of them anywhere else. I feel like the danger of nukes is greatly overstated, especially with Kerbals' natural radiation resistance (being able to survive in unshielded capsules in Jool orbit and on Laythe and such).

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I understand not wanting to dump spare nukes on Kerbin, but I don't see the problem with disposing of them anywhere else. I feel like the danger of nukes is greatly overstated, especially with Kerbals' natural radiation resistance (being able to survive in unshielded capsules in Jool orbit and on Laythe and such).

Hold on a minute . . . Lathe can sustain an atmosphere. Now last I checked, getting bombarded by space radiation destroys atmospheres. Therefore Lathe must have a strong magnetic field to keep it's air. That same field serves as radiation shielding.

Also, the Mk 1-2 pod weighs a crapton. I'm paying for every kilogram of that with my precious dV. What am I lifting, extra snacks!? That better be good radiation shielding I'm lugging around!

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Surely there couldn't be a problem with just merely flinging them into the sun? Right?

Other than the spectacular waste of fuel involved? Getting fuel into space is not a trivial cost to space programs; that's the point of using LV/Ns in the first place, to lower the launch cost by reducing the weight of fuel needed for the mission. To spend as much fuel again after you're done with the engines to get rid of them negates the point of using them in the first place.

JK

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In real life one of proposed usages of Energiya rocket was sending nuclear waste to heliocentric orbit between Mars and Earth. I think, that this solution would be quite logical if you care about ecology so much.

And if you're in Jool system you could send it to Jool's atmosphere. Jool is radioactive anyway, dumping all the nuclear plants there won't change it at all.

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In real life one of proposed usages of Energiya rocket was sending nuclear waste to heliocentric orbit between Mars and Earth. I think, that this solution would be quite logical if you care about ecology so much.

And if you're in Jool system you could send it to Jool's atmosphere. Jool is radioactive anyway, dumping all the nuclear plants there won't change it at all.

Only grossly uninformed people could think that would be a beneficial solution regarding anyone and anything. :)

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I haven't used nukes yet, but to deposit my debris it gets a crash into the mun or planned so it gets flung into interplanetary space. I use KSPI and all my satellites have reactors and docking ports, so when they run out of fuel i think i am just going to use the mun to fling them interplanetary.

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