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"2-stage" (I wish!) atmospheric heavy lifter (with recovery parts)

Discussion in 'Community Creations' started by J-Cataclism, Mar 6, 2019.

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This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.
  1. J-Cataclism Apprentice Engineer


    Hello, engineers!

    I´ve left my attempts to build a tank-track vehicle aside for now, and decided do build (another!) 2-stage atmospheric lifter.
    I know, I know... it´s not KSP, and SE is not meant to build rockets. But it´s cool, anyway!

    Also, as in the current rocketry business one of the main keys seems to be the recovery of parts (except in the case of government agencies...), I´ve made a bunch of adjustments using Whip's Automatic Drop Pod scripts, so every single "first stage" can try to land by itself.
    I know, I know... we´ve got parachutes, if we wanted, but it´s as Whip´s answered on his Workshop page: "a suicidal burn is much cooler!".

    Sometimes all of the grids come gently to landing; other times, some just decide to go in some kind of crazy atmospheric ballet.
    Part of it might be due to my unbalanced assembling of heavy parts and thrusters, but the script might have its freaking insane moments as well (so much for the exact calculations!).
    It hapens also with small and balanced grids.

    The main grid/vessel was designed to work as a space ship, fully capable of landing back on Earth, though.
    But even as it has enough ion thrusters for all directions, there are only two large trhusters behind, so it cannot return as a regular SSTO shuttle.
    It already has the necessary blocks/scripts to land by itself as well (reverse descending), so for the next video I´ll se if it´s possible this way or if I´ll have to install some large atmospheric thrusters as well.

    I apologize for the eventual lag during the video, but my only computer is a laptop and it isn´t THAT thing, so it might get beaten whenever I try to record gameplay videos.
    Also, I´m using some of Meridus "NPC Encounters" Mods, then it might get slower when the script attempts to spawn a new grid.
    Links for the scripts AND mods in this video:

    How did I "install" and use the scripts in every part?
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2019
  2. J-Cataclism Apprentice Engineer

    After atmospheric burn and landing, those who didn´t crash can be perfectly controlled. Back to the launch pad!
    (But I should have gotten higher before turn autolanding on....)

    --- Automerge ---
    The "main" stage/vessel couldn´t safely land back, ´cause it would need many large atmospheric thrusters to do so. Hence, I´ve added an automatic detachable external bay, which can take off from Earth merged with the lifter, and then can be connected/disconnected whenever the player wants.

  3. J-Cataclism Apprentice Engineer

    Made another version of the 2stages-lifter. Much more clean, and now with TWO of the official SE ships attached, so the player can search around in space or perform quick returns to Earth, as the main vessel is not capable of doing so.
    I still have to make a better job on adjusting the atmospheric lifter to the 'Drop' script... maybe it´s too strong. And I have been trying to figure out why do the parachutes open at different directions from each other...

    --- Automerge ---
    If you remove the gatling gun from Burstfire OR CursorLight (small ships), you can merge them upside down to each other!

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  4. J-Cataclism Apprentice Engineer


    Regarding the drop pod/autoland feature:
    This ship is configured to deal with a max speed of 242 m/s (I used Midspace´s Max Speed script), which means the drop pod/autoland may properly work only if you:
    -change your ingame speed limit to the same above; or:
    -adjust the "custom data" settings in the "Programmable (Ejector1) drop pod".
    If you do not intend to perform any of the changes above, you can also turn the PBs OFF and turn ON the parachutes instead. But, as you can read in Whip´s Workshop comments, "a suicidal burn is much more fun"!
    There are four of them, one in every rounded corner of the "Ejector" (1st stage/under).
    Anyway, NONE(*) of that is needed if you don´t want to recover the Ejector and rather let it crash back down into the ground.
    (*)After you detach the Ejector, a timer block starts the 3´30" (3 minutes and 30 seconds) countdown to activate the dampeners and DEACTIVATE the large ion thrusters override. If your max speed is 100 m/s, that time MAY NOT be enough until you reach zero-G.
    In that case, you can either increase that countdown BEFORE start the lift-off procedure, or disable both that timer and the large ion override, so you must control the 2nd ascending stage by yourself.
    This timer block is named as "Timer Block (2middle) small Dampeners". To be sure, you might as well turn off the "Programmable (4middle) small Dampeners" block.


    If you know scripting, you could add some lines to make the ship enable dampeners and disable override as soon as it detects gravity. I haven´t done it because, currently, I don´t know how.
    In that case, instead of using the timer block above, you could make a sensor or what else detects gravity to perform the activation of the "Programmable (4 middle) small Dampeners".


    This ship is meant to be modular, multipurpouse. The main vessel ("middle") is airtight and survival ready, but I have NOT installed neither a medbay nor a survival kit, leaving that decision to its further owners ;-) .
    Its interior has plenty of space and structure to receive your own choice.
    Also, please note that neither the main vessel nor its upper bay are meant to work in atmospheric environments. In fact, they will probably fall down in whatever scenario where the gravity is stronger than 0.10G.
    Once you´ve put them into space, the best way to go back to ground or land in other planets and moons would be using the fighters - they´re pretty capable of going down anywhere and come back to orbit the ship.


    The video doesn´t show the latest version, in which I´ve adjusted some groups and slot-keys to make the lift-off easier.


    The two original small fighters are not mine. They were built by Aragath and I took them from the official Keen´s collection page.
    I have made A LOT of changes in them before attaching both in this blueprint, but if you already have or wish to use the standard ones, they should fit just fine.
    Mostly I tried to make them a little less hydrogen dependable and added a few timer and programmable blocks.


    A few scripts/mods that are inside the blueprint:
    -Whip´s drop pod/cargo pod (which is the main jewel of this stuff!)
    -Blarg´s fancy flight (those above your head while seated on the main "cabin")
    -Whip´s artificial horizon (at the LCD on your flight seat´s left side)
    -Midspace's Configurable Speed Mod
    -Small Ship Mega Mod Pack


    If you paste (Ctrl+V) the ship into your world, hit the gravity assist while positioning it (original 'B') and have it a little above the ground.
    It was saved with both dampeners AND atmospheric thrusters ON, so it will not crash back down.
    This will also avoid that the game places it as a station.


    The Ejector´s antenna has a short 5000 meters range, so if you wish to try and control it by yourself after the 1st stage separation, you might need to increase it a bunch, before to take off.


    My suggestion for a proper semi-automatic lift off:
    -Before take off:
    1.) seat the main/front Flight Seat. You don´t need to close the airlock sliding doors - they´ll shut by themselves;
    2.) land it to the ground (if you wish to perform a checklist or make any changes as I suggested at the beginning);
    -Ready to take off:
    3.) hit the FORWARD key (original 'W') and disable the dampeners;
    4.) while continuously throttling, hit the '4' do disengage the landing gears (if you were on the ground);
    -DO NOT use 'P' to unlock the ship from the ground!
    --As you have the small fighters attached up there, on the bay, they likely will be set loose and fall apart. Use the '4' key, instead (check the group slot settings).
    Mostly I tried to make them a little less hydrogen dependable and added a few timer and programmable blocks.
    5.) once you hit the 6000 meters mark (more or less, don´t have to be obnoxious about that...), release the acceleration (make sure the dampeners are OFF) and press '9' at the very next second;
    -From now on, both the Ejector and the Lifter (main vessel) are controlled by theirselves - but you can intervene, if you wish.
    --You can just remain on your seat and watch/monitor the trip until you reach zero-G, but PAY ATTENTION to the timing, as I´ve mentioned above;
    --You can hit 'Alt+F10' and, from the "Entity List" menu, search for the new "Large Grid" and watch its automatic drop and smooth landing;
    --You can disable both the timer block and the "Large Ion Thrusters" override and pilot the ship by yourself.


    Once you´re in space, after a full stop, you could:
    --Go to the "2nd" floor (NOT airtight!), so called "Bay", and take a look around;
    --Go to the front button panel and activate the auto-separation sequence (take a look at the screens both in front and above you while you press '1', '2' and/or '3' (optional - cancel detach);
    --Play a little bit with the upper-rear bay, where there is one of the small fighters;
    --Detach the Bay, turn it backwards OR turn the main vessel around and reconnect them (yeah, you CAN!);
    --Detach the Bay and convert it to a station, so it will remain for small support and parking for your small fighters;
    --Disconnect both the small fighters and reconnect them on both sides of the main vessel - in which case, be sure to use the connectors: the upper merge blocks they have are small grids, so they WON´T merge with the large ones on the ship;
    --Disconnect both the fighters, REMOVE the gatling turret from one of them and connect each other using their upper merge blocks.
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2019
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Thread Status:
This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.