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Everything posted by MaxwellsDemon

  1. An earlier post on this thread speculated that the Chinese space agency may have been unaware of the need for a reboost-- something that I find difficult to believe, as they have more than enough experience in orbital flight themselves to model the upper atmosphere and resulting drag accurately, to say nothing of the availability of data from other countries. There was evidently a decision made not to reboost it. What I haven't seen is if there was any good reason not to launch a tug to dock with it and control the re-entry, as the Soviets/Russians did with a number of their space stations (Salyut 7 notwithstanding). It's puzzling, unless they have something else up their sleeve, like blowing it apart at the last minute.
  2. Once KerbNet came out, I had this brilliant idea that I'd use it to "discover" the names of various places. But, I soon discovered it was a waste of time, as the names weren't persistent or specific to the locations. Additional thought: Hm. Wonder if it's possible to write a mod that displays feature names in Tracking Station and/or Map mode? You could perhaps name a feature, input it, and then it would display, either as a waypoint-like icon or words "written" on the surface. [I know it's not possible for me to write it, though, unless I can use SQL to do it. ]
  3. The only places I've really assigned names to are on Minmus, in the spots where I like to build bases. They're not particularly strikingly original, but they're useful to my thinking. For instance, the very tall flat(tish)-topped mountain just east of Great Flats on the equator is the Great Mesa, and the extension of the Lesser Flats to 0 degrees latitude is South Bay.
  4. The 1.4.1 campaign is chugging along... it's in that "pause" phase between the time of the first breakthroughs and when I can really start moving, when I'm somewhat dependent on contracts to fund the space center expansions. I've upgraded the launch pad, Mission Control, the tracking station, the astronaut center, and the VAB, and now I'm scraping to upgrade R&D. (Since I'm using KCT and my rule is to not upgrade R&D capabilities until I upgrade the physical plant, this means that research is on the slow side right now... a 90-point 5th-tier tech takes 180 days to research.) But I know from past experience that things will pick back up again once I'm over this hump. My principal concern right now is getting to the point where I can launch some comsats. Because this time I decided not to allow the tracking stations other than at KSC, my comm network will be more important. I've been fiddling with the old HGR (Home Grown Rockets) mod, which has some nice parts that complement the newer parts, especially in the 1.875m size. On a whim, I renamed Bill and Bob to Wally and Malcolm, partly in tribute to Wally Schirra and Malcolm Scott Carpenter, and partly so I can better keep in mind which one's the engineer (Wally) and which one's the scientist (Malcolm).
  5. Yeah, I thought I had done that, but I may have not drawn my "exception circle" wide enough or something, because it still appears to be "catching" stuff.
  6. Not formally asking for support just yet-- but has anyone else been having trouble getting the KRASH "Sim" button to appear in the VAB? (I'm still checking to see if my Windows Defender is at fault, so the problem might be local on my end...)
  7. Close, central Oer. How about an engraving of Wiley Coyote holding that little Acme umbrella? That would make a good tombstone engraving.
  8. By any other name, it's still one of my favorite mods! I don't have too many name ideas, but maybe something like Assembly Line? I'd suggest something referring to Khruschev's declaration that they were producing rockets "like sausages" but I can see too many ways that could go wrong.
  9. I had the sound off so my boss wouldn't think I was doing something other than work. I knew that about the docking procedure in theory, but I didn't realize the motion was so pronounced in reality...
  10. I just realized that I had never watched a live docking before. Three questions... maybe n00b-level, but curiosity overrides... 1. On final approach, the [Kurs antenna?] of the station appeared to be vibrating/flickering. Really happened or a video artifact? 2. Just after contact, the docking camera appeared to slew around to the left (to the point where I wondered if docking had been unsuccessful). What was that? 3. I couldn't tell which port MS 08 docked at from the video feed... was it Pirs or Poisk? Space.com reports that it was Poisk.
  11. I keep wanting to use the mouse to change my perspective and zoom in and out.
  12. Seriously, the question wasn't asked with any malice aforethought... it was just something I suddenly wondered about. I should probably just say "Soviet," and leave it at that.
  13. Sorry I asked. Just trying to be respectful to the Chief Designer!
  14. Super-Hyper-Colossal-tastic! I think it all matters who's coming up with the names. A government agency will give it a string of letters unpronounceable as an acronym; if it's up to private industry, and marketing focus groups start coming up with the names, they'll start sounding like car model names or prescription drug names....
  15. It wouldn't be the first time a Russian has been misquoted in translation, anyway, whatever he said. (Or a Ukrainian. I'm not certain what Korolev self-identified as.)
  16. A couple of books I've read say that Korolev referred to that sort of toxic storable-propellant stuff as "devil's venom." Out of curiosity, what's the Russian for "devil's venom?" (I could Google translate it, but I think there's a high probability that this is an idiomatic expression that wouldn't translate correctly...)
  17. Werner kept trying to launch sounding rockets to reach the edge of the atmosphere... but they kept going just about every direction except up. After one near miss on KSC, Jeb came up to him and said, "Doc, put a seat on that thing for me and I'll make it fly straight." * ...And he did. (Oh, sure, you can credit SAS if you want to. I say it's because Jeb is the original BadS.) The early days of a campaign are fun. * Translated from Kerbalese.
  18. Started my 1.4.1 campaign rolling... after some sounding rockets went up, sent Jeb and Val on suborbital hops. (Technically, they were supposed to be orbital attempts, but... at any rate, they lived to give their after-flight reports.) A little closer to "iron man" this time... 70% science reward, no respawn, need to pay to unlock parts, Kerbal Construction Time, USI Life Support, no tracking stations beyond the one at KSC, only upgrade R&D capacity with KCT when the physical R&D gets upgraded. I'm keeping the option to revert flight but will use it only when the problem is because of a system problem or other IRL issue, rather than an in-game situation. Call it an "aluminum man" campaign.
  19. Incidentally, I've seen references to an English translation of Valeri Ryumin's diary from his Salyut 6 missions, apparently published in Russian in 1987, "A Year Away from Earth" (English title). It seems to have been part of the JPRS translations, and produced/reported on February 12, 1990, but I can't seem to find that particular issue on line. If anyone's run across it, I'd be happy to know about it. Full reference (from Portree, Mir Hardware Heritage, p. 151: Valeri Ryumin, A Year Away from Earth: A Cosmonaut's Diary, Molodaya Gvardiya, 1987, pp. 1-207. Translated in JPRS report, Science & Technology, USSR: Space, February 12, 1990 (JPRS-USP-90-002-L).
  20. There's some detail and illustrations at http://www.astronautix.com/t/tks.html including this, which might be what you're after:
  21. As a head's-up, I encountered problems with this mod-- not because of the mod itself, but because of the recent issues with Windows Defender quarantining various .dll files as "malware,' causing this (and some other mods) to 'fail silently.' So, if someone asks for help, that might be one of the issues they're dealing with-- unfortunately.
  22. So... to recap... if one is starting out from "zero" and wants to gain a thorough understanding of Soviet and Russian space flight history (without learning Russian), my recommendations would be (in this order): 1. Oberg's Red Star in Orbit. 2. Harford's Korolev. 3. Either Hall and Shayler's books (Rocket Men and Soyuz) or Harvey's Race Into Space. 4. Siddiqi's Challenge to Apollo (Sputnik and the Soviet Space Challenge, The Soviet Space Race With Apollo) 5. Ivanovich's Salyut. 6. Harland's Mir. 7. Harvey's Russia in Space: The Failed Frontier? And then after that, as you will. Poyekhali!
  23. Part of the difficulty is that the whole thing with the descent capsule has two directions it could be thought of as pointing-- sort of like the two-headed llama in "Doctor Doolittle." In the diagram in Jestersage's post, the docking mechanism is to the right, and the return capsule is to the left... so when the vehicle is docking, the return capsule is pulled along with it "heatshield end first" relatively speaking. But when the return capsule departs the rest of the TKS, it moves off the other direction.
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