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)

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Preparations around Kerbin and Mün

My Minmus operations are on hold until the Navitas has produced enough fuel in order to continue the Tripol´s exploration. The game session passes with some preparatory or finalizing maneuvers during that phase. In short news-screenshot style:

While on its way to the Scientia 2, the White Goose rescues an engineer Kerbonaut, thus generating profit for this flight.

The Fuel Ship reaches Mün orbit, on its way to the Scientia and the two lander-rovers.

The Navitas has produced enough ore to fulfill the according mission contract. It seems the drills can run without electricity during nights if you do not switch to the vessel and leave it when it still has some remaining charge. Cheesy.

A new tourist contract, very demanding conditions; four tourists want a tour around Duna, one a suborbital of the sun. The annoying thing is the micromanagement of each individual tourist, as each of them has different requirements.

After some hazzle, I manage to dock the Fuel Ship (RCS thrusters cannot be well aligned because center of mass is very shifty, according to how much fuel currently is stored in the vessel). The receivers are now mostly tanked-up and ready for some Mün landing missions.

The Fuel Ship´s escape vector back to LKO is not very efficient; an inherent disadvantage when starting from a polar Mün orbit with the current crappy orbital angle.

The White Goose finally reaches the Scientia 2 in LKO, tanks it up, takes over the 30 science datasets and the complete crew for a shore leave.

Re-entry falls a bit short of the landing area, promting an extended flight at Mach 3+. The heat is up to the limit for some parts, notably the RCS thrusters (I have to figure out something for them) and, inexplicably, the stuff in the small cargo bay. Thank god the Octo SAS unit does not explode (although not so vital here as for the Fuel Dragon, as the White Goose has a cockpit and a pilot on board).

I rarely remember to do sceenshots during final approach. It´s a very sensitive phase, requiring some skill and focus.

The scientific data from the Scientia 2, largely from it´s Minmus landing on the slopes and orbit, give a big boost to my science account.

The latter achievement provokes some thought on where to invest those ~1100 science points; as anticipated, some 700 came from the data from the Scientia 2, with about 400 hailing from crew and EVA reports from the Tripol, which I could immediately transmit from there without any loss. The science could either launch the "nuclear area", or allow access to construction parts and large docking ports, or perfectionise my spaceplanes by getting access to wings with fuel capability etc.. However, it is still not enough points to realise some new spacecraft designs which I have in mind. Maybe it is the best to just access nuclear engines, as there is an immediate need for them to fulfill the sun suborbital tourist missions. Once I have finished the ongoing Minmus exploration and rover´d around Mün, I should be swimming in enough science points, so a limiting decision now has no long term consequences, anyways.

As soon as contracts are fulfilled, new ones pop up in the mission control center. There is one which makes me ponder some time: Get 450 ore from Mün. Of course, the challenge is to accept every contract the game throws at me. This particular contract is so profitable that it could even afford the launch of a new Omniscient-class vessel, as a mining outpost on Mün. Of course, if the time until the Duna transfer allows for, I could also just re-route the Navitas, once fuel is no longer needed at Minmus.

I will have time to decide this until my next game session. Log out.

Next steps:
- fuel up and finalize the Minmus exploration with the Tripol
- start the exploration of Mün with the two lander-rovers
- decide how to go about Mün mining
- decide about scientific development and cfg. do the tourist suborbital sun missions with nuclear engines
- maybe think of finally allowing shore leave also for the Mün-based crew, in this context plan for a shuffling-around which will get all Kerbonauts to experience level 3

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