Jul 06 2018

Operations Summary – Week of 7/2/18

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Progenitor Schedules Next Block I Flight

While we’re still working out the mission planning for the next Block II flight there is still a mission the Block I can fly that will help us potentially further understand the hazardous radiation region around the planet’s equator. Everyone is excited for our first night launch, scheduled now for 7/20 @ 20:51 UTC. More information on how this launch could help scientists explore the space near us can be found in this report.

Genesis Dubs K-422, Preps Deuce for Rocket Carry

The official nickname for the K-422 will be the “Dhumla”, pronounced “Dum-lar”. Not only does it sound like something big and hefty, it’s derived from ancient kerbskrit from a tale about the 4 rivers of life. Given that this aircraft is too big to fly without 4 engines, we found that to be a good enough analogy. The name was suggested by twitter user @Benj.

The Deuce and its Progeny Mk1-B rocket have both been repaired and this time mating was successful, allowing the mission to progress forwards once again, with the captive carry flight and release test scheduled to take off after second sunrise on Monday. Both Tedman and Aldeny are excited to finally fly a mission together and also push fixed-wing flight and rocket flight into new territory.

KerBalloon Goes the Distance

MSV Lymun departed earlier today and is still enroute to the release location over 2,000km away, the longest distance yet traveled for a balloon mission. Thankfully the route to get there is well-charted thanks to the undersea cables that had to be laid through those waters for the Arekibo Radio Observatory. We expect the ship back in port tomorrow and this link will go live with a mission report afterwards.

ATN Database & Finance Report

The weekly update for the Asteroid Tracking Network database is available here, containing 2,190 asteroids and 7 updated with new observation data.

We’ve published our financial report for June, which came in at a nice profit thanks mainly to the Interstellar Exploration Foundation’s large grant for future exploration of the hazardous radiation region – but we still almost made a profit without them.

Celestial Snapshot of the Week

If an outer planet is seen rising at sunset and setting at sunrise, as Jool is doing here along with Mun, that’s how you know it is close to opposition, which is when the shortest distance separates us from the planet along this orbit. Depending on the eccentricity of the planet’s orbit, the distance at opposition can change over time. For Jool, the previous opposition was the furthest, with each successive one becoming closer as Jool itself starts to move inwards towards the sun and perikelion.

From the Desk of Drew Kerman

Out of Character Behind the Scenes stuff

Written on 6/23/18

It was a pretty meh week both IRL and KSP. Did not have the drive to work a lot, but also just came off a fireworks show which is more physically demanding than I’m used to on a daily basis these days. Two more shows in the coming weeks as well – after a show next week I will have Friday and Saturday to update/fix anything and prep to be gone the following week and when I return I will have maybe 2-3 days of lead time left. Ugh. But at least I don’t have to come up with some excuse to shut down the KSC or at least say it’s unable to tweet for a few days for some reason. So yea things are put-putting along but will remain moving, which is better than nothing!

CNQ-846(C) oopsie

I make an impact plot of the asteroid when it is first discovered by the ATN, but I don’t post them until the asteroid enters the SOI and I double-check the location. In this case the asteroid ended up coming down further westward than I initially calculated, so that was what I posted. Turns out that was a mistake and when I watched it hit in the game it was over the original impact point. I dug that image out of the recycle bin to post as well. Not sure what I messed up when I redid the impact plot after SOI entry but I will have to be sure to double-check my work doing that in the future.

On a related note I did consider having the event impact the KSC more seriously to free me up some lead time but turned out I didn’t really need it and Mun was really on the opposite side of Kerbin at the time creating a low tide.

New Dhumla engines

Turns out I did in fact need to switch to another engine since the pusher prop I had flipped around didn’t seem to be generating the power I needed. Further testing also revealed the aircraft really did need more powerful engines as well. Unfortunately my best choice still had pretty long blades but I managed to get it to work with ground clearance remaining – even if it’s not much.

I got two suggestions for a name in the end. The other was “Komet 767” but I like to save “K”ing things for use a little as possible and the suggester admitted the 767 had no real meaning. All numbers associated with a vehicle needs to reference in some way either the vehicle itself or its mission. Had I not received any good suggestions I was just going to nickname it the “Titan”, same as in GTA V’s version of the C-130. I’m glad I didn’t have to.