# ComNet and Antennas

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Hello. I am about to attemt making a ComNet around Kerbin - but i have trouble discerning the range of the antennas... I dont know what MM, Gm or M stands for here:

I tried to go to a very well written Wiki - but it was KSP1 - and it seems they use different terminology to explain what type of signal it is.. and then i have to do math to figure out the range?

Is there a way you can see the range on antennas? what satelites can see each other? Etc.

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The ranges are all given in proper SI units.

1000 meters = 1 kilometer
1000 kilometers = 1 megameter
1000 megameters = 1 gigameter
...and so on.

And yes, you have to use math, because whether two satellites can talk to each other depends on the sending and the receiving antenna. Both matter ingame - just like it does IRL. Two satellites that each have a communotron-88 can be much, much further apart without losing connection than if a communotron-88 tried talking to a communotron-16.

In that regard, the wiki for KSP1 is still relevant, because KSP2 reimplements most of KSP1's mechanics largely unchanged.

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Megameters is kind of silly... I was sure it was Milimeters when it said MM. - which was why i could not make it make any sense... My bad x)

Alright - I will try look into it.. I have some real life experience with radios and antennas.. but i've never been in a situation were i had to math it out. But.. 200.000km range on the small comotron 16-s antenna, I gather 8 ish satelites should be able to speak with each other around kerbin no issue - Its more if i wanna have a comnet beyond kerbin i need to do the math?

Also is there a way to see in game if a antenna has LOS to another, and are within range?

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• Solution

No way to see commnet connections, no. The system is borderline unimplemented. I'm honestly surprised it's working at all - it serves no purpose at the moment and wasn't mentioned on any roadmap.

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Thats odd - a lot of my unmaned crafts were complaining that it lost connection to the ComNet? - I didn't have a satellite network up covering Kerbin, so i gathered it was because i lost connection when ever the drone was outside Kerbin Space Center Line of Sight?

I turned it of, as i was not yet at a point were i was ready to establish a ComNet - I was still figuring out the basics in the game - but i am now.. so im doing the "mission planning" for orbits, number of satellites etc. But... drones losing ComNet is a bug then?

Edited by BechMeister
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• 3 weeks later...

Probes losing comment on separation from the parent craft is a bug, but its quite easily and trivially solved. Just install the Community Fixes mod and you’ll get that fix as well as some others too.

That said, if you’re looking to plan out and deploy a network of satellites may I humbly offer the services of Flight Plan? With that you can easily plan your deployment and so much more!

If you prefer something a little less capable but still useful for this sort of thing then you might want to look at Resonant Orbitc Calculator. There’s nothing it does that Flight Plan doesn’t also do, but it’s there if you want a more light weight single purpose solution.

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On 5/3/2023 at 2:13 PM, BechMeister said:

Megameters is kind of silly

...on a planet.

In space it's a convenient unit, at least until you need to star thinking in Gigameters.

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@schlosrat That is some quality recommendations! - I will definitely look into your suggestions at a time were i have more free time at hand x)

10 hours ago, Superfluous J said:

...on a planet.

In space it's a convenient unit, at least until you need to star thinking in Gigameters.

Oh dont get me wrong I for sure can see the application of the unit... I just thought it was silly that "mm" and "Mm" is so similar.. It begs for mistakes to be made. Even if common sense should prohibit it.

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You can also see antenna ranges by holding Shift while hovering over the part.  In fact, the shift menu gives good info for nearly every part - I wish it was more prominent or even the default.  The tool tip is near the bottom of the screen and honestly I think I overlooked it for nearly 70 hours of gameplay.

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Yeah, that i knew. The problem was i didn't know there was a difference between Mm and mm. I though Mm was just a typo and it meant millimeters... but I got more clever.

Also the KSP wiki made the comnet component seem more advanced than what KSP2 showed. Which was why i asked to it. In the end I found out it was a bug that had caused the comnet to go offline, not a lack of satelites x) so I thought the system was more advanced than it was.. and that i lost comnet because my second stage decoupled outside the main dish range on KSC.

I kind of think it would be cool if you had to make a relay network from KSC to LKO for communication to work.. maybe it will be so? as of now the whole comnet thing seems disabled. I was going to test all the antennas were working as relay antennas.. but when i flew to the dark side of the mun my drone still had connection to KSC - so it seems to me they resolved the Comnet bug by turning off the comnet requirement.? Any way.. long story short - the question was a result of a mix between misunderstanding a bug to be a feature.

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@BechMeister sorry I misunderstood the issue.  AFAIK relays do not work yet in KSP2; you have to have a big enough antenna to reach from wherever you are back to Kerbin.  I can tell you with certainty that setting up a relay network is cool - my normal routine in KSP1 was to always send a "Welcome Wagon" to any new celestial body which included, but was not limited to science equipment, an autonomous lander, and a series of relay satellites to set up.  Only after all of that was done would I send a crewed vessel.  I look forward to doing that again in KSP2 once all the features go live.

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That is also a really cool Idea, something I plan on doing to - I thought of going full "The Martian" and send the landers to the mission ahead of schedule autonomous and then send the crew there later with a simple lancer they ditch or something. Just for immersion.

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