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Missile wheel

Discussion in 'Community Creations' started by Innoble, Sep 27, 2015.

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

    Messages:
    238
    This is an improved version of my earlier missile launcher. It is simpler to build and much cheaper in terms of resources. I demonstrate the missile wheel in this video:


    The things I believe are fairly unique about this setup are:

    -Warhead separation. I use a bomb to separate the missiles. This is the only way to do it right. Anything with grinders is going to shake the missiles all over. I did some tests to find out the explosion range and with this setup it destroys exactly the amount I want. It may seem wasteful to blow up so many conveyor tubes, but the total resource costs are still low if you consider I am using them to get 24 warheads from A to B.

    -Launching missiles with only a GPS co├Ârdinate as input. Perfect vs stationary targets. In theory it could work vs moving targets, but only if they move around in a general area and then it would require many passes to get lucky (imagine 24 missiles zapping around in all directions until they hit something). I would suggest you view this as a base-bombardment tool.

    -One thruster propulsion. Almost all missile designs I have seen use 6 thrusters and a remote control block so that it can use ordinary scripted propulsion. My way makes it much harder to hit with gatling guns because it does not travel in a straight line (it does... almost, but it deviates enough to make the majority of bullets miss). It is also much cheaper to build.

    -Sensors: Every missile has a target, but if that target does not cause the missile to explode (for example, if nothing is there), it will check the full 50m sensor range and change it's target to LastDetectedEntity, meaning it wil turn around and come back. If nothing is in range it will fly around until something is. The initial target-co├Ârdinates are 12 m. away from eachother so that there will be no chain-reactions when one of the missiles gets hit by stray bullets (warheads damage up to 5m away).

    -a full ring costs only 35551 L resources, meaning you can fit resources for 12 rings inside a large cargo container. As you can see in the video, just one set of missiles does serious damage to a base. I doubt anything will survive vs a missile launcher with a full cargo.

    -I deliberately did not armor the missiles. Armor would make it heavier and more costly. I would also not be able to build them so close together. Not to mention the fact that armor shortens the range of the explosion (the missile contains its own blast). The protection of these missiles is simply the fact that there is a swarm of them.

    -The video was made in creative (of course), but the only difference in survival would be that I need to make it transfer 0.01 uranium (or so) to the missiles after they are created. Otherwise it should work fine.

    -In terms of lag: the script that controls the missiles does not seem to lag my computer, even though there are 24 of them. Welding the wheel together does cause lag. I have noticed that if you use rotors or pistons in a ship-printer, you get way more lag than if you have only stationary blocks. You could make this wheel with stationary blocks, but you would need more welders.

    Let me know if you see anything that would improve the effectiveness of this setup. I will continue to improve it until I feel it works perfectly and then I'll share it on the workshop.

    EDIT: a new video:



    Workshop link (world): http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=531213281
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
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  2. Mirones Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    67
    nice setup for planetary bombartment with an remote control you might even set difrent targets with gps but that would need an scout on the ground
     
  3. carnivore Apprentice Engineer

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    158
    Very nice minimalist design, and an amazing script it seems! I wonder if it could be modified to make a decoy missile that harasses enemy defenses without actually crashing into anything.

    Do you think this could be scaled up to fit on a single slightly larger 3x3 missile? If so, and if it could propel itself forward for a second to clear the launch tube, this would be a perfect script for refreshing my guided missile frigate.


    Would you mind sharing your script?
     
  4. JD.Horx Senior Engineer

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    1,032
    That's really impressive man, saw many PMW concepts with large blocks, but this a nice small grid attempt!
     
  5. Hesterry Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    248
    Well, this is awkward. I think I'm in love.

    Would it be possible to add a second thruster to the side of the missiles, and whenever the missile has to turn, rotate the missile around so the second thruster can dampen and support the turn? If so, it might be possible to have these track well enough to hit a reasonably large moving target.
     
  6. Dwarf-Lord Pangolin Senior Engineer

    Messages:
    2,597
    It's so beautiful ...
     
  7. Hellothere! Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    412
    Does this still work when fired let's say 90 degrees off the target? I'm thinking of having these things on the sides, or even back of my ship, where they would be protected against enemy fire.
     
  8. Innoble Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    238
    About the decoy missile. When my script did not work so well yet, it would do precisely that: Orbit around the target, not hitting anything. So yea, in fact that is even easier and requires less blocks. No warhead, maybe not even a sensor.

    Do you mean can the missile script be adapted to your larger (3x3) missiles? Sure, but the script hinges on being a single thruster thing (or multiple thrusters facing the same way). It rotates before it thrusts. The thrusters turn on when it is rotated the right way. Propelling it out of a launch tube and then turning it should be possible. What you can do is turn on the thruster and a start a timer. Then when the timer stops, the regular script starts, so it will turn when it is well out of the tube. Something like that could work. How would it be connected in the tube though? Do you use grinders or mergeblocks or something? Actually disconnecting missiles from whatever ship you use is not an easy thing. Blowing up the connecting parts was the way to go for me.

    I will share the script when I share the whole thing. I want to work on it a bit more, make some more fire modes (like a fire mode to hit the same target 24 times instead of the explosions being spread out. That would be a good fire mode to use after you take out the base defenses. I should be able to fit different fire modes to the buttons in the back. I also want the wheels' production to be more automated (instead of having to sit in the cockpit clicking: rotor on, arm reverse, welders on, welders off, arm back etc.) That should not be too hard, but will take time and testing. In the end, using it should be a matter of copy pasting the GPS coordinate into the LCD and then clicking a button that goes with a particular fire mode.

    It can't dampen because there is no remote control or cockpit. The script does take into account current velocity and the target direction, so the thrust is not exactly opposite to the target. It does a rough estimate to find the direction needed to A: reduce the velocity in the wrong direction and B: increase the velocity in the right direction. So it wil often be pointing slightly off one side of the target to compensate for its own velocity. Of course, the more thrusters it has, the better it would work, but they don't need to be in different directions. There is always 1 ideal acceleration vector for every situation, so one thruster can do the trick (but 2 in the same direction would be stronger). Calculating this ideal thruster direction is very hard btw... I did not manage to do it perfectly, only an approximate. The problem is taking into account the turn time. Gyro corrections are very small at large distances, but if you need to turn a lot when you're close to the target, the algorithm I use will not be perfect. In some situations, by the time your missile is turned right, the ideal direction has already changed. If the ideal direction changes faster than the gyro can compensate, the missile will actually start orbiting the target (which is cool... since orbits are hard to achieve, but not what I was aiming for).

    Without real intertial dampening, it takes a lot of time to reduce the velocity (even using extra thrusters). It will probably go like 300-400 m just to brake to a standstill. Regular inertial dampeners are a factor of 10. If you add a remote control block, you could use the intertial dampeners at critical points and be a lot more manoeuvrable, but you will still have a major disadvantage compared to a ship that already has thrusters in 6 directions and does not have to turn to change its velocity. In a single thruster missile with dampeners the most limiting factor is the gyro. The faster it can turn, the faster it can change the thruster direction and dampen. It might well work for chasing large ships with very low acceleration. I do think the 50m sensor range is VERY limiting for this kind of thing. When your target makes a quick move in one direction it will travel 50 m in almost no time at all. Better would be to use the 800m turret range and triangulation, but turrets are big things to use. Either your missile would get ridiculously big or it would need to communicate with some kind of radar drone.

    Maybe in the future (if Keen changes things like the sensor range or turret scripting) chasing moving targets with this kind of missile would be possible, but for now I think it is way more useful for hitting stationary targets. I do think it is possible to make hunter drones with a patrol script, turret triangulation and guns/rockets. I think other people have made such things. But those are made with WAY more blocks than my 8 block missile setup. This is actually made much easier with the recently added turrets for small ships (though... it has no script support for azimuth and elevation angles yet... so no small ship radarships)

    right now, I have it scripted so that it automatically rotates the entire wheel production ship in the right direction and then it launches the way you see in the video. The problem with an off-target launch (which is possible to do) is that the missiles are so close together that if they are not facing the right way when the center warhead goes, the game (for some reason) thinks there is friction between the missiles while the missiles are turning (even though there is still 1 block space between the missiles) and some groups of missiles will stay still until you physically fly your character into them (like they're frozen even when the script is running). It is kind of odd and very random. Once they are moving, they dont mind if other missiles are nearby and they manoeuvre just fine, but the launch point is a bit picky about its direction. One way to do it the way you're suggesting is to adjust the design of the wheel itself, by adding a programmable block and gyro to it (to give the wheel brains too). You launch the wheel straight out, then rotate the entire wheel 90 degrees and then explode the center warhead. Maybe that would look a lot cooler too, a flying wheel that turns around, goes boom, turning into 24 missiles. One problem is that the wheel would need to decouple as well. Right now the center warhead explosion decouples the missiles and destroys the wheel both. Perhaps a grinder could decouple the wheel so that it can get clear of the main ship before turning and blowing up.

    Maybe an even easier way is to give the missiles each a very short thruster boost of varying length at the start so that each of the 24 missiles will fly a bit straight out, but not the same distance. If they are, say 3 m. apart, they can turn freely and also be launched from any angle. One thing you will have to take into account with this is that you still want to keep the launch synchronised so that they all hit the target at roughly the same time (to frustrate the gatlings...). So just a very short boost, before the main script takes over. Also, you still don't want to launch them at 180 degrees this way, unless you fancy carpet bombing yourself.
     
  9. Innoble Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    238
    Just edited the top post: New video and a link to my workshop world. It has the missile factory and the wheel, both of which also have scripts, so you should get everything you need from that one link.

    I will move on to a new project soon. I am thinking of doing something with modular ships (merge blocks). Maybe I 'll make a self building modular bombardment ship. I'll make a video if I get anything done in the next few weeks.
     
  10. HollowVoices Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    59
    That's awesome! I can't stand the vanilla turrets. I would love to see more automated firing systems like this. Really wish Keen would introduce some type of launching of some sort so that we don't have to build complex contraptions such as this. Great job though!
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2015
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