Tag Archive: orbital

Nov 16 2014

#045: IP ComSat II Déjà Vu

The KSA has readied a third satellite for launch into polar orbit to complete the first interplanetary communications network around Kerbin. The first launch failed during ascent, the second launch was successful, and now the Agency hopes to add another good launch to their record. Once in place, the two IP ComSats will allow Mission Control to contact craft anywhere in the Kerbol system, staying both high above and below the orbital plane as much as possible to improve chances of connections.

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Nov 10 2014

#044: The Dawn of Interplanetary Comms

With the previously-failed launch of IP ComSat I, the second craft already under construction was used for its replacement. The purpose of these satellites is to achieve extremely elliptical polar orbits in order to spend the maximum amount of time above/below Kerbin for best possible line of sight to other planets in the Kerbol system. A dish capable of reaching as far as Eeloo is included on each satellite, as well as two smaller dishes to help connect craft traveling around the Kerbin system. In addition to placing IP ComSat in orbit, some existing hardware up in LKO was re-purposed to help create a more redundant communications network around Kerbin.

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Nov 07 2014

#042: 2.5m Engine/Mk1-2 Recovery Trials

With the upgrades to the VAB complete, the KSA now has the ability to construct larger 2.5m craft in addition to any 1.25m rockets already under construction. Before they can launch their first 2.5m rocket, there are two new engines to test. The main lifter cluster is actually using the Bearcat engine that has been the lifter engine of choice for the KSA mostly since day one. However it has only before been clustered in pairs. A new orbital engine to replace the 1.25m RMA-3 workhorse is also in need of testing. Once the tests have proven successful, the teams can assemble a 2.5m test vehicle to put the new Mk1-2 capsule through an unkerbed orbital mission to ensure it can return safely.

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Oct 29 2014

#038: IP ComSat I Ascent Failure

With the Duna I mission undergoing final construction this month for launch at the beginning of December, the KSA is using the time to put in place two new communications satellites around Kerbin that will provide links to any craft operating in interplanetary space. The R&D department recently rolled out their largest dish yet, capable of communicating as far as Eeloo. This was to be the first of two satellites orbiting high over Kerbin’s poles, and is also the first rocket to incorporate recoverable boosters.

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Oct 23 2014

#035: Mu-SCAN – Munar survey & science

After proving that the technology to map planets from orbit was proven with the earlier K-SCAN mission, a new probe was assembled to make the journey to Mun to perform the same task. Here it would be much more important to obtain surface data for use in future missions, both kerbed and unkerbed. The Mu-SCAN probe also carried along a gravioli and radiation detector for a secondary mission of gathering new scientific data around Mun.

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Oct 22 2014

#034: New Astronaut Training (Flight 2)

After the successful removal of orbital debris earlier in the month, the final piece of orbital debris awaits removal by the KSA’s second new astronaut, Captain Wehrtop Kerman. This mission will serve him well to apply all the training and skills he acquired during his 6 months training as a kadet, including overcoming any unforeseen obstacles during execution. The debris being removed was part of the rocket that took Captain Bob into orbit where he was finally able to successfully rendezvous for the first time with another craft in space.

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Oct 10 2014

#032: New Astronaut Training (Flight 1)

The KSA is looking to clean up two spent stages floating in space, and it has two astronauts fresh out of the Academy to prove their mettle on individual missions to de-orbit the debris. Capt Desson, by virtue of alphabetical order, is launching first atop a revised version of the craft Capt Bob used to perform the first-ever orbital rendezvous earlier this year. After a range clearance issue forces the launch later into the day, Desson carries out his mission, but not without problems.

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Sep 29 2014

#030: K-SCAN Mapping Satellite

Just prior to receiving two new astronauts into the program, the KSA launches its first mapping satellite into orbit around Kerbin to test new technology to gather surface data on planets from space. The instruments on board measure terrain altitude and slope, as well as vegetation and land surface to create a biome map. Future missions to Mun and other planets in the Kerbol system depend largely on the success of the technology deployed by K-SCAN.

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Sep 16 2014

#029: Munar Relay Network Completion

The KSA finally recovered enough from the atmospheric asteroid explosion just over 150km west of the KSC at the end of August to complete assembly of the third Munar comsat and launch it on its mission to complete the Munar relay network. The previous attempt had ended in failure due to wrongly-tuned boosters, but Lead Engineer Simon personally oversaw the final stages of the rocket construction to ensure booster thrust was set properly. In addition to completing the communications network around Mun, once separated the transfer stage would perform a fly-through of the impact cloud kicked up when the previous Mun comsat transfer stage, still in orbit, slams into the Munar surface. Lead Scientist Wernher Von Kerman had devised a new dust collector experiment for this purpose, although the collectors are also capable of collecting interstellar particles. Finally, there was a chance to arrange a very close (1.3km) fly-by of a passing asteroid in the hopes of photographing it prior to the launch of ComSat Mun III.

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Aug 18 2014

#028: Booster Overload

The KSA was finally on the verge of completing their ComSat network around Mun so they could begin sending orbital and surface missions in earnest and start to fully explore the nearest neighbor of Kerbin. The launch of ComSat Mun III arrived on schedule, although there were some problems earlier in the week – the SPH suffered a worker death and the VAB had to deal with a minor fuel fire. The VAB supervisor ensured that everything was alright, however a critical step in the launch readiness procedures was overlooked…

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