Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
You can follow along, if you want...

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Port truss

Kerbal Space Program update!

In between editing Winter Summit sessions (which is going way faster this time thanks to CCP Logibro's notes), I've been building my space station. Finishing one summit session means I get to add one section to it. ;-)

It's looking pretty damn good, I think. From bottom to top, service module, science lab, 6-way docking node, crew cabin, 6-way docking node. On the very top, two big fuel tanks (more what they're for in a second). Engine facing the camera in the center, the crew escape vehicle which doubles as a fuel transfer vehicle. At the back docked to the center six-way docking node is the P0 truss with lots of rechargeable batteries and another 6-way docking node. Solar array trusses are docked to that, one on each side so far. You can see my truss delivery vehicle on the back right. I don't really need more arrays; there's nothing on the station that draws that much power.

But it looks good. ;-) And it's all done with KSP stock parts and no MechJeb.

At this point, I've clearly mastered orbital rendezvous, docking, and EVA. In particular, I've docked little things and big things, on-axis and off-axis, and I've done a couple of triple dockings with that fuel transfer shuttle going back and forth. At this point, I can just eyeball a docking if I have to (and I often have); I hardly look at the pink docking marker at all during docking.

As you can see at top right, those two big tanks are almost fully fueled. Next thing (after I've edited way more Winter Summit sessions) is to build a planetary transfer vehicle (to be called Enterprise, natch). She will dock with the station on top, and take on fuel from those two big tanks until she's full. Along her sides, six inline docking modules. Then I send up six landers. Then, test flight to the Mun. Put Enterprise in polar orbit, undock the six landers, and land on six biomes on the same day.


Next step, build and test the landers. For various reasons, they have to be capable of both landing on an airless surface and handling their own landings on Kerbin.


  1. One of the classic problems you're going to likely run into with the refueling station is that any craft large enough to drink that much fuel might as well be a fuel depot itself, making it easier to just refuel the thing directly than try to nuzzle it up to your refueling station with the part lag (I see you're in yellow-mode already) amplifying the already low maneuverability. If your craft is small enough to not need all that fuel then why put all that fuel up there? It's one of the many reasons that (KSP) space stations are generally agreed to be very cool but largely useless.

    1. Yep, that's the main reason this station isn't getting any bigger and it might get smaller. I'm thinking about undocking the service module and sending it home since it no longer adds very much.

    2. Use a space tug to place your station modules instead of the module itself. That way the engine, RCS and even batteries don't have to exist on every module.

      This will cut down on your part count significantly (you could probably save ~100 parts on the station in the picture), which in turn helps game performance.

      Using an appropriately sized - and strutted - docking ring will also help minimize wobble (the primary cause of physics lag on large stations and ships).

    3. I went ahead and sent the existing service module home, then replaced it with a hugely simplified one. That solved the problem nicely. Solid green clock even with something big docked.

      But it's an interesting thing to know for next time if I ever build another.

  2. "and no MechJeb"

    You're just being overly hard on yourself. ;-) Nice looking station. Good luck on your Duna, etc. missions!

  3. I'm really enjoying your KSP updates; I hope they continue!

    P.S. Also wanted to say thanks for all your hard work on CSM8.

  4. Btw if you think going to the moon is difficult in ksp... Try doing it to n minecraft.

  5. This is the straw that broke the camels back in convincing me to buy KSP. I hope you're happy.


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