Year 6, Day 285 (Explorer 2 Crew Lands on Duna!)

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On board Duna Spaceport, the crew of Explorer 2 prepare for the very first Duna landing!  Mitster will pilot the vehicle to the surface, with Dunwin providing the engineering expertise to deal with any unforeseen issues the lander might have.  Once the craft has proven itself Kimmy will head down in the next landing.  A lot of consideration was given to the first crew to head down, and the pilot/engineer combination was chosen in deference to safety, as the Duna lander hasn’t been tested “live” before! screenshot54.png

Kimmy watches from the Observation Lounge as the lander moves away from the station…

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“I can tell you now, we’re not setting down where Mission Control planned – we’re moving too fast, and if I don’t slow us down … well, it won’t be pretty!”

-Mitster

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Mitster fires the landers engines, slowing the vehicle down enough to engage the parachute…

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The parachute deploys!

“Oomph!  That really took the wind out of me!”

-Dunwin

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The lander slowly descends to the surface…

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At the last moment, the engines fire again, to set the lander down gently…

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“Duna Lander to Kerbin – we have set down on Duna and all systems are go!”

-Mitster

screenshot70.pngDunwin climbs out!screenshot76.png

Followed by Mitster, who plants the first flag on Duna!screenshot78.png

Cheers are heard throughout Mission Control – amazing!

“We still have some samples and exploration to do before we head back, so let’s get busy”

-Mitster

The lander overshot its landing at the anomaly by 17km – a distance much farther than walking would allow.  Mission Control decides that while a small “hop” is conceivable however crew safety is paramount, so a future landing can be done to investigate the lowlands – there will be no hop!

“This lander handles much differently in an atmosphere than it did on Mun, I’m not even sure I could pilot us effectively over to the lowlands… the return to orbit will be tricky enough! ”

-Mitster

The lander will remain on the surface for a few days, then head back to Duna Spaceport!

 

 

 

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Year 6, Day 281 (Duna Spaceport Lander Readied)

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Mitster remotely pilots the Duna Landing Vehicle to the Crew Docking Module.

“Well, that wasn’t so hard!

-Mitster

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Mitster and Dunwin celebrate the docking by relaxing in the Observation Lounge, and taking in the impressive view of Duna!

Late last year (Y5D421), the Duna Surveyor arrived in orbit of Duna and has been dutifully mapping the surface.  Mission Planners have been working tirelessly to select the best landing sites!  Already, several anomalies on the surface have been found – one located in the lowlands has been selected as the first site for landing on Duna, designated Duna Spaceport Landing Site 1, or DS-LS01!

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Year 6, Day 275 (Explorer 2 Arrives At Duna!)

After a 334 day journey, Explorer 2 arrives at Duna!

screenshot1876.pngMitster’s calculations were perfect, and the spacecraft arrives within 100k of the Duna Spaceport.

“Nicely done Mitster!”

-Dunwin

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Explorer 2 move in to rendezvous with the station…. screenshot1881.png

Counter-intuitively, Explorer must first move away from the station, taking its orbit out to nearly 120k, before moving closer again!

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Explorer 2’s Transfer stage uses up the last of its fuel, bringing the spacecraft 50meters away from the station! screenshot1891.png

“Almost there… almost there…”

-Mitster

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Mission success!  Explorer 2 docks with Duna Spaceport, and the crew flips on all the lights!

“Now we just need to get that lander over to the crew docking port, and we can make history!”

-Kimmy

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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!