Flieger, grüß' mir die Sonne, grüß' mir die Sterne und grüß' mir den Mond. Dein Leben, das ist ein Schweben, durch die Ferne, die keiner bewohnt! - Hans Albers, F.P.1 antwortet nicht (Adaptation in the 80s: Extrabreit)

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Little Kerbal steps in between real life

A long holiday weekend has passed and real life is still dominant. Which leads to only little scraps of playtime on some evenings, and thus smallish projects and ponderings. Some ponderings can be done "offline", which often serves me as a nice mental break. Need to write them down now in no particular order, or they will be forgotten in hindsight:

- Built Fuel Jumbo for 1440 units fuel payload; should be complemented by a space tanker which will wait in orbit and take up this amount and transfer it whenever to whereever needed.

- Need more science: either more landings on Mun and Minmus or going out to Duna and other planets? Maybe both?

- Done: Retrieve 4 Kerbonauts with Munbus from their current location, the Scientia in orbit of Mun; this went wrong, I had transferred too much "spare" fuel to Scientia: ~350m/s dV needed to reduce Kerbin periapsis, had only 200m/s dV left after SOI change. Reloaded to avoid a boring and time consuming rendez-vous mission. Munbus now set for aerobraking in Kerbin at a periapsis of 58km, with the goal to establish orbit and rendez-vous with the...

- fetch quest

- ...White Goose, which I positioned ready in orbit to fetch Kerbonaus from Munbus and refill Munbus; its ascend profile is difficult, almost forgotten in between game sessions: 30 degree until 10km to still get acceleration. A bit <10 degree to get speed, let ascend profile climb by itself. Like this, max speed ~950 m/s @20km. When firing Skipper, DON´T go >20 degree ascend or plane will flip up! After second try, it is in orbit with not only 720, but ~1100 units of fuel left for transfer; fantastic!

- staying in orbit!

- Idea after reading in the forums; fill up Scientia 2 with all available scientists and do Minmus landing and let them all plant a flag: Should greatly advance their experience level and thus accelerate science point creation in labs.

- Did a construction of a spaceship with plane parts plus mobile lab ~4500m/s dV, but what use? Smaller would be more efficient, so back to the trusted old Scienta-class ship line? Seems that ship class, with its four terrier engines, already and by chance did hit the sweet spot between payload and fuel efficiency.

- Tried a reconstruction of "Swan"-ship class from my beta 0.9 career, but design idea as a modular transfer stage does not make sense without nuclear engines: even the efficient Terrier engines do not have enough dV and TWR left in order to dock big payloads. Single specialized crafts seem to still work better at this tech stage. Need moar science!

- Idea: Have a third mobile lab stationary on Kerbin, recollect science data from all Biomes via a plane and put it in there for fast (i.e. in terms of in-game time), cheap additional science points? Need moar scientists!

- Still an open mission to land outpost on Mun. Should probably be done by another Scientia-class vessel; makes not much sense to make mobile lab more bare-bone than with that ship class (don´t want scientist having to sleep in their lab seats, either!). And again: Need more Scientists to actually make use of that lab. Plus-efficiency idea: Refuel before landing for later take-off and interplanetary mission, while its labthen  munches on its acquired Mun-data packs?

- Interplanetary navigation test: No idea how to set course for Duna. Repurposed "used-up" satelite which has still enough dV left and burned to get into solar SOI. Then set up and played around with a maneuver node. Found a  navigation node @128days to get into Duna SOI: reached in 312 days!!!! Duna will be basically opposite sun from current Kerbin position when the satelite will arrive. A way too long travel time? Need to find optimal transfer distance/timing. Consequence: Interplanetary missions should not be done "when ready", but when planetary constellations are appropriate. [After check in forum: 260 days seems to be absolute minimum travel time, so actually right now is a still good launch constellation. Should therefore prioritise Duna mission now!? Nice picture guide here.]

- Probably a good idea for a science boost to do a planetary roundtrip for high- and low orbit experimental data? If I just had already the nuke or ion engines for that!

Do I just love this game? It is totally sandbox, but opposed to my experience with other sandbox game, this one is filled to the brim with easy-to-access ideas and incentives to what and how to do stuff (Yeah, looking at you, EVE-Online...!)

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