Nov 11 2016

Operations Summary – Week of 11/7/16

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Progeny Mk2.1 Announced for December Return to Flight

The first Progeny Mk2 exploded shortly after launch and the investigation into the anomaly concluded earlier this week. Now that we know the problem and how to fix it, new parts have been ordered and the rocket re-designed to remove structural stress on the engine fairings. Everything is expected to come back together for a launch of the MK2.1 in early December.

C7 Readies Prototype for Trials

Progress continues on the Civvie prototype, with its airframe completed and checked out the final steps have begun to install the wiring, avionics, seats, parachute, lighting, control cables, etc to make the aircraft fully functional. Then the landing wheels will be attached and it will roll out of the HAB for ground trials to check the undercarriage and engine before it attempts to take flight off the runway, which has been surfaced as best as possible. C7 expects the trials to begin next week.

Known Asteroids Whiz Past Kerbin

The Asteroid Tracking Network has cataloged almost 50+ asteroids to date, some of which you can see in its first monthly report. Two of these asteroids are paying the Kerbin system a visit this weekend, with more on their way. It’s important to understand that these are just the asteroids we know about currently passing through the system. The ATN estimates there could be as many as 2-4x that number at any given time that are simply not seen due to various factors, like observation time, position relative to the sun, size, albedo, etc. Astronomers will be tracking these objects closely after they have left the Kerbin system to make sure they don’t pose any future threat after the slight alterations to their orbits from passing close to Kerbin (and sometimes Mun).

Research & Development Update

A contract has been signed with Bluedog Design Bureau to join us in development of a new payload instrument for measuring radiation. This is a very important aspect of space flight that needs to be closely monitored to ensure the safety of future space travelers. Right now we have no idea what the radiation environment is in our upper atmosphere, let alone space.

The liquid fuel program has had a minor breakthrough, attaining a sizeable reaction with our oxidizer. No one was in danger during the testing, and the team has filed an initial report with Cheranne on their results. We expect to hear more on this in the coming month. We’ve already begun the process of choosing a LF/O engine design from either Umbra Space Industries or Kerbodyne to use with our Progenitor Program.

Additionally, the use of a separate stack decoupler for the Progeny Mk2.1 instead of one built-in to the booster has us looking into adding a radial decoupler to our inventory as well. We’ve already started looking at design bids from several companies.

Celestial Snapshot of the Week

After witnessing the Minmus transit last month Val has been on a quest to get her personal telescope upgraded with a higher-powered objective lens so she could better see transits of moons across not the sun but other planets. She finally saved up the funds this month to buy the parts she needed and has put the upgrade ‘scope to work on Duna, Sarnus and Jool, the three planets with the best transits to be seen from a small ground-based telescope.

No shadow visible thanks to our current viewing angle to Duna

No shadow visible thanks to our current viewing angle to Duna

Transits happen often, however planets have to be visible in the sky over KSC for Val to catch them in action, and she can’t see them during the day. She’s determined however to catch as many as she can when she can. We can’t blame her, they are really cool!

From the Desk of Drew Kerman

Out of Character Behind the Scenes stuff

Written on 10/1/16

Finally went back and took care of the Minmus transit photos and event tweets. If you want to block out the glare of the sun you need to uninstall Scatterer and make sure you have Kopernicus. Then you just need to add the following MM config somewhere in you GameData folder:

    removeCoronas = True
      %sunLensFlareColor = 0, 0, 0, 0
      %rimBlend = 0
      %sunspotColor = 0.54,0.35,0.13,1
      %rimPower = 0

whether you want to removeCoronas or not is up to you, it clips into the sun a good deal and looks bad. I actually had to disable, screen cap, restart with it re-enabled and then composite the corona-less sun atop the one with the corona. You also don’t need sunspotColor if you don’t want it.

It also took me 61 attempts to get the image I wanted for Val smiling and giving the thumbs up in front of the transiting Minmus. This was due to the fact that to get her to smile time warp needs to be on, but the thumb-up animation raises and lowers the arm. So with time warp the arm doesn’t stay up long and I have to coordinate the keypresses for entering timewarp, triggering the animation and then snapping the screenshots. In retrospect I probably would have been better off just filming and taking a frame image or modifying the thumbs-up animation to stay in the thumbs-up pose. Regardless, it has made me wonder if I should take another stab at the mouth manipulation in Kerbal Animation Suite, which was pretty complex to mess with due to the amount of settings that are attributed to the mouth.

Still no 1.2? Still no 1.2. At this point if I get to the point where Civvie flight trials are due to begin I have two options – stop playing and wait for 1.2 (and FAR) so I can use the trike gear, or stick some retractable gear on to take off with.

A few hours later… decided to give the normal wheels a go. Wow wheels really suck hard still in v1.1.3…