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psyper

Rendezvous with Rama

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I originally set this up for a friend of mine who I hooked on to ksp but I thought the community would like to have a go too! He came up with an idea to send some of his kerbals out of his solar system and then send the craft entry in the persist file to me and then I can pick them up on their return journey. This and the Rama books by the great Arthur C. Klarke inspired this challenge.

With the advent of the spacewatch Program after a meteorite collided with kerbal the kerbal scientists have discovered an unusual object heading towards the sun. On a highly elliptical orbit the object was ruled out to be the normal kind of meteor that the kerbals were used to. It also emits a strange signal. They decided to put all of their resources and a few brave kerbals in to a project to intercept this object for study.

Your mission is to download the save game:

https://drive.google.com/uc?export=download&id=0B8S2KVucoU9cLTl4cXRzcF9fZVE

Export the zip in to your ksp/saves folder and run it - its a sandbox game and uses stock parts so don't worry about science, costs or mods.

You are not allowed to view the ship until you're within physics range. You should have no idea what you're running in to.

You can use whatever craft you wish from another save game or create one and you're allowed to use whatever mods you wish (in fact this is encouraged - so many options with bringing lifesupport to the ship for your kerbals to journey out in to the unknown).

You can do whatever you want with the craft itself - go nuts - study it and leave it on its journey out of the system like they did in the first book or colonize it like they did in the sequels, or bring some delta-v and bring the craft back in to kerbin soi or try landing it on mun!!

Oh and post pictures - lots and lots of pictures but if you do on the first page of this thread please use the spoiler tags (same goes for anything that could give the game away) - I want future explorers to visit the craft not knowing what to expect... :D

Have fun!

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cool, i love these exploration/scenario type challenges. Downloaded and drafting a mission. This is a great chance to start experimenting with a lifesupport mod :)

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How to win?

Entry level is managing to dock or get alongside it. Extra kudos for living aboard it, modifying it by connecting to the docking ports in strange and wonderful ways, pulling it in to a kerbin orbit, landing it on to mun or other crazy stuff with it.

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HmoPWCE.png

I've built and launched my stock ship. In-orbit validation phase of systems and drives has been completed. About 7000 dV, about 12 years of supplies for the two pilots. Equipped with a claw, an unmanned/armored scout drone crew, two micro-spaceships serving as crew-cockpits and a hitchhiker habitation module. Adventure awaits. Currently checking various launch windows and possible gravity slingshots for a reasonably fast Rama intercept with plenty of surplus fuel.

Or8r48R.png

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Wow, that target has such a crazy orbit. Huge inclination, about 60° to Sun-retrograde! Combined with the low PE and high AP, this makes planning very interesting. A direct course to intersect takes about 10.000dV. And the planets are not really in a favourable constellation for my usual Eve->Jool approach.

Anyway, after playing around with the Launch Window Planner and PreciseNode for several days i have found a somewhat satisfying flight plan to Rendevouz with 4800dV and 7 years of flight time. (Mad props to anyone who can come up with a less fuel intensive strategy). Haven't planned the return yet. Probably going to just add a food + fuel droptank then finally embark from LKO :)

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Breathtaking moments. Raven has arrived and i can tell you all: that mysterious space object out there is really worth a visit. Video will be coming up, this deserves a true storyline video!

PdBJnfm.png

Thank you for this challenge (even if I seem to be the only one participating). Really appreciate the effort you put into it!

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http://i.imgur.com/HmoPWCE.png

I've built and launched my stock ship. In-orbit validation phase of systems and drives has been completed. About 7000 dV, about 12 years of supplies for the two pilots. Equipped with a claw, an unmanned/armored scout drone crew, two micro-spaceships serving as crew-cockpits and a hitchhiker habitation module. Adventure awaits. Currently checking various launch windows and possible gravity slingshots for a reasonably fast Rama intercept with plenty of surplus fuel.

http://i.imgur.com/Or8r48R.png

That is such an awesome ship!! I love interplanetary ships and so deserving for an alien encounter (not too sure on the missiles though - yeah I saw them :o )lol

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Thanks for this. It was really fun.

I won't be able to play for the next week. Since I only had a couple of hours I put together a "interstellar mod" ship with a warp drive. Flew out there and then burned like 9000 dV to match velocities and bring it into an intercept. I put a claw and a docking port on it. Alas, not the correct one. So now I'm going to see if I can attach the claw to the center and bring it home to kerbin.

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This was a really cool book series. Might give this a try at some point, but I'm working on my own personal challenges atm... later this week though... awesome lookin stuff so far though!

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Well this is indeed interesting... I'm in. Downloading now.

I'm intrigued by the idea of some unknown ship appearing in the system...

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Hmmm. I'd love to see some of these flight plans. I'm having a devil of a time planning one.... Or rather one without insane Dv requirements....

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Hmmm. I'd love to see some of these flight plans. I'm having a devil of a time planning one.... Or rather one without insane Dv requirements....

Well I used a warp drive and it still took over 9000 delta v to match speed with it once I arrived. It is non-trivial.

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Hmmm. I'd love to see some of these flight plans. I'm having a devil of a time planning one.... Or rather one without insane Dv requirements....

My flight plan was about 5000dV, but yeah, that took quite a while to figure out. I think it's possible to go even lower if you are willing to accept immensely longer flight times (i found a 35 year return route from Rama Periapsis for only 2800dV). The route i took goes like this:

- The key is to use Jool to help with the plane-matching problem. Arrive at Jool while its on at the ascending node of Rama (happens at year 33, day 392).

- To do this, leave Kerbin around year 32 day 47 (about 2300dV)

- at Jool slingshot to match planes and bring your PE down to Ramas PE. (~2000dV)

- at PE, burn retrograde to set up intercept one orbit later (~100dV).

- at intercept, some weeks before the next AP, match velocities (~600dV)

I'm currently finishing the video creation, some parts of the flight plan will be shown there as well.

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I'd be interested in seeing what ships people construct for the rendezvous. Tempted to do a leaderboard based on how awesome the ship is, best dv / time getting an intercept and what imaginative uses are made for Rama after the intercept..

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I'd be interested in seeing what ships people construct for the rendezvous. Tempted to do a leaderboard

If you call it a leaderboard, you'll have to lay out objective criteria for who scores why and whatnot; you'll also have to deal with people who peek and build optimized vessels to spec. Just call it shout-outs, honorable mentions or whatever.

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Thanks for the challenge, paying Rama a visit was definitely fun. Although it could have been made a bit harder, the book Rama definitely wasn't on a closed orbit so I was a bit disappointed to see this one is.

I think I spent some 8000 m/s dv on the whole trip (from LKO back to Kerbin surface) without any gravity assists, it wasn't that hard. I sent an Ion craft just to be safe and returned with plenty of Xenon. Except I had to drop it before reentry as the ship was built to land only the capsule.

The game could use some faster time warp for such occasions.

I wonder if I should post my album from the trip. Gotta go sleep now, maybe tomorrow.

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I'm throwing in the towel... I've only had one halfarsed trip to duna so far, so I think the planning is beyond me at this point.

I suspected the jool assist when I read about a probe being thrown into a solar polar orbit via Jupiter. But I came here and saw that after deciding I wasn't up to the challenge.

:(
Edited by tg626

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I made it. I spent 39 years to reach Rama and it took 11600 m/s dV. For me it was very difficult to catch Rama but also very interesting.

Thank you for adventure!

Sir Jodelstein! Great video! If I start my business in space ship industry you have a place as a pilot. You can really fly!

Edited by totalitor

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I started working on this one.

The Endeavour is in LKO. It needs to be refueled and armed (I plan to attach to it ion ships equiped with missiles and boarding stuff).

Then I will send it to Moho, deploy there fuel bases and make the intercept burn from there.

I really want to see what it look like and watch you picts :)

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