Year 6, Day 1 (Enterprise Upgrades KSS Power & Solar Systems!)

screenshot1763.pngVal and Chrisnic blast off in Enterprise, delivering the long promised second power and solar expansion to the station!  screenshot1765.png

Chrisnic, one of the most experienced engineers on the KSEA team will supervise the installation!

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The module remotely guides itself into position…

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Then Chrisnic leaves Enterprise to investigate!

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Deploying solar arrays!  Wow! These are huge!   Both deployed perfectly.  Returning to Enterprise!

-Chrisnic

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Enterprise departs!  The Heavy Cargo Shuttle will be trying something new today, landing at White Mesa!  The shuttle will then be flown back to the VAB for repairs and to be readied for its next launch!

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Enterprise does its “belly flop” manuever to slow down its reentry….

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Then glides to the runway!

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A great landing! Val and Chrisnic rest up for their next mission!

Year 5, Day 19 (Intrepid Launches on KSS Repair/Upgrade Mission!)

screenshot1478.pngIntrepid blasts off, taking up to the KSS, with a cargo bay full of ladders!screenshot1493.png

It takes a lot of work.. but Chrisnic and Dunwin are eventually able to install both the ladders and grip surfaces as well as the new module’s solar panels, and even add some decorative lights!  Decorative safety lights. screenshot1495.png

The new panels deploy succesffuly!

“Well, will you look at that!  Those are some big solar panels!”

-Dunwin

After a … mostly… successful mission, Enterprise prepares to head back to Kerbin.  Edan will take the craft down himself, while Chrisnic will stay on the KSS to train!

screenshot1498.pngEdan lines up a perfect landing…

screenshot1500.png… and sets down!  Edan is developing a reputation for being a no-nonsense pilot that can handle pretty much anything that comes his way!

Year 5, Day 13 (Enterprise Launched to Upgrade KSS Power and Solar Systems!)

screenshot1444.pngEnterprise launches!   Edan will pilot the Heavy Cargo Shuttle to orbit and rendezvous with the Kerbin Space Station, and Dunwin will supervise the initial installation of the solar power unit, and then perform EVAs to complete installation from Enterprise’s cargo bay! screenshot1445.png

“Orbital Assist Vehicle is away… heading to the station!”

-Edan

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Dunwin reviews the mission parameters as Enterprise rockets towards the KSS!

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Enterprise arrives at the KSS and the module detaches!

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Installation proves very difficult, with Chrisnic leaving the station to assist Dunwin!

“This is just impossible!  There’s no way to get a grip on anything!”

-Chrisnic

Chrisnic and Dunwin return to the KSS, taking the extra parts from Enterprise, while Edan tries a “first”… docking Enterprise itself to the Kerbin Space Station!

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“Almos there… almost there…”

-Edan

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Wow – everyone is very suprised that the docking actually worked.  The KSS was never designed to dock such a large craft, but Edan showed that it was possible!

“Now let’s all hang tight and wait for Intrepid!”

-Edan

KSEA decides to send up Intrepid to deliver some parts to allow the installation of footholds and other gripping surfaces for the station!

 

Year 4, Day 406 (Adventure Launches to upgrade KSS Solar Systems!)

The newly refitted Adventure takes off, carring Jeb and Chrisnic up to the KSS!   The mission:  To relocate the solar arrays on the Space Station!

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“Ground Control, this is Jeb.  Low Kerbin Orbit achieved!  Heading to rendezvous with the Station!”

-Jeb

The Crew Shuttle Program is rapidly becoming one of the mots used spacecraft in the KSEA arsenal.  These small, dependable vehicles have become the standard for getting Kerbals to low orbit!

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Once Adventure docks, Chrisnic gets out and begins rearranging the Solar Panels on the station to a more optimal configuration! screenshot1430.png

“There we go!   That should make for a better layout!”

-Chrisnic

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Placing the solar panels along the relative “top” of the station provides for better solar coverage.  With the job done, Adventure disconnects, and heads back to KSC! Chrisnic stays on the station for a short time to familiarize himself with the station!screenshot1432.png

Have fun up here Chrisnic!  I’m heading back to KSC!

-Jeb

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After performing its de-orbit burn, Adventure detaches its cargo bay!

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After a quick, but very hot re-entry…

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Jeb sets down for a perfect landing at the Space Center.  Nice!

 

 

 

Year 4, Day 48 (Explorer Arrives at Gilly)

screenshot633.pngThe Explorer spacecraft finishes its journey from Eve to Gilly, circularizing an orbit around the small planetoid.

“Fuel keeps getting lower and lower guys… let’s try to be careful!”

-Mitster

screenshot636.pngFor the first time all three crew of a spacecraft will abandon their vessel and head down in a lander.  It’s a bit risky… but no one wants to be left behind on such a momentous occasion!Chrisnic, Mitster, and Orlas climb into the LARC… and detach!screenshot644

The LARC slowly moves away from Explorer.. and heads down to Gilly!

“”I’m so excited! ”

-Orlas

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The LARC sets down, and Chrisnic climbs out…

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Once he lets go of the ladder, the slightest step sends him flying across the surface

“Whoa!  The low gravity here is… very low!  Be careful!”

-Chrisnic

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Mitster is next… expertly piloting his rocket pack over to Chrisnic!

“You weren’t kidding!   It’s almost like we’re in space, and not even on a moon!

-Mitster

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Orlas jumps out next!

“Wheeeeee!”

-Orlas

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After having a good deal of fun playing on Gilly, the crew of Explorer gathers to take a landing portrait…. when Orlas notices something…

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“Wow!  What a sight to behold!”

-Orlas

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The crew pose for their portrait… the first Kerbals to land on Gilly!  What a day!  The crew will spend about 4 days on the surface of Gilly collecting important data before returning to the Explorer, high above the small moon… empty… waiting for its crew!

Year 4, Day 33 (Explorer Arrives At Eve)

screenshot516.pngMitster and Chrisnic transfer to the command module, while Orlas looks out the windows excitedly – it’s Eve Day – the day Kerbals arrive at Eve for the first time… ever!!!

“It’s so… purple!”
-Orlas

screenshot526.pngThe NERV Nuclear Engines fire… and fire… and fire.. the long but very efficient burn lasts nearly 4 minutes, as Explorer’s orbit is slowly circularized around Eve.

“Hang in there everybody… this will be a long burn, but it’s going exactly as simulations said it would!”

-Mitster

Indeed – DSV-1 Explorer eventually does circularize it’s orbit… and becomes the first vessel carrying Kerbals to orbit Eve!  The orbit has an apoapsis of 14,831 km, and periapsis of 122 km.  The burn took so long that Explorer will need to swing around Eve once more before arriving at the Periapsis again… and that’s when the atmospheric probe will be launched!