Campaign: Kerbol System Exploration

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Final Business Campaigns Kerbals in Space

Introduction

The new international Kerbal Space Program formed in the aftermath of the Kerbollo 13 rescue, set out to answer long-standing questions of the universe for the rest of all Kerbalkind, and exploration of the Kerbol system began in earnest. Probes were designed and launched to the inner planets, and plans made for a Grand Tour of the outer planets at some point thereafter.

This campaign presents a mission manifest for taking your first baby steps out of Kerbin's SOI with safe, reliable probes. By the weeks end you will have mastered Inter-planetary orbital maneuvers, and be smugly lounging around the orbit of other planets. Missions are based on inter-planetary missions of the 1970's, including Mariner 9 ('71) and 10 ('73), Venera 7 ('70), Mars 3 ('71), Voyager 1 ('77-'80) and 2 ('77-'89).

Specifications

  • Length: 3-10 hours
  • Difficulty: 6/10 (Proficient)
  • Skills needed:
  1. Advanced navigation via maneuver node (SOI intercepts with other SOIs)
  2. Expert orbiting (gravity assist)
  3. Intermediate understanding of interplanetary launch windows (phase angles)
  4. Advanced probe design
  • For version: Every version (tested on 0.20.2)

Helpful Links

Orbital Mechanics 101, knowledge of delta v values on the Cheat Sheet, and an understanding of phase angles from Olex's Interplanetary Transfer Calculator, and launch windows. Or you can just use Kerbal Alarm Clock.

Missions

Planetary Fly-bys

  • Kerminor 9: First Planetary Orbiter (Duna)
Build and launch a probe orbiter over Duna.
  1. Probe must contain four extendable solar panels.
  2. Probe must contain a dish antenna.
  3. Probe must orbit at an altitude under 1,500km.
  • Kerminor 10: First Planetary Slingshot
Build and launch a probe that will flyby both Eve and Moho.
  1. Probe must contain two extendable solar panels, a dish antenna, and a Communotron antenna.
  2. Probe must contain at least one scientific instrument.
  3. Probe must flyby Eve within 6000 km.
  4. Probe must flyby Moho within 500 km.
(Challenge: flyby Moho three times instead of once.)

Planetary Landings

  • Kenera 7: First Eve Lander
Design, build, and fly a probe lander to Eve.
  1. Probe core must land on Eve without losing any parts.
(Note: losing parts as part of the descent, as long such loss is planned prior to entering the body's SOI, is permissible)
  • Duna 3: First Duna Lander
Design, build, and fly a probe orbiter and a probe lander to Duna.
  1. Probe must consist of an orbiter and lander with the lander able to separate and land on its own.
  2. Probe orbiter must orbit Duna at an altitude under 1,500km.
  3. Probe lander must land on Duna without losing any parts.(Note: losing parts as part of the descent, as long such loss is planned prior to entering the body's SOI, is permissible)

Grand Tour Missions

  • Explorer 2: Flybys of Dres, and Jool
Kerbal scientists have discovered a once-in-a-lifetime launch window whereby gravity assists can be used to fling a probe on a visit of multiple planets and bodies. Take advantage of the opportunity and plan your mission carefully. This Grand Tour would forever be remembered as KSP's unmanned program's finest moment.
  1. Build and launch a probe with at least a dish antenna and a Communotron antenna.
  2. Probe must contain all scientific instruments available.
  3. Probe must flyby Dres.
  4. Probe must flyby Jool
(Note: You may also choose to orbit, if you can.)
(Note: You are welcome to accomplish both Grand Tour missions using the same probe if you are able.)
  • Explorer 6: Grand Tour of Jool and Eeloo
The second successful mission of the Grand Tour project, Explorer 6 was launched shortly after Explorer 2.
  1. Probe must meet the same building requirements as Explorer 2.
  2. Probe must flyby Jool.
  3. Probe must flyby Eeloo.
  4. Probe must reach Kerbol escape velocity and leave Kerbol on a trajectory toward interstellar space.
(Note: You are welcome to accomplish both Grand Tour missions using the same probe if you are able.)

Final Word

Much data was gathered in these early planetary missions, one of which captured a particular photo of Kerbin, entitled "Pale Blue Dot" by Karl Kergan. This was taken from the first working probe to exit the Kerbol gravitational sphere of influence. This photo would have great historic significance. Future plans for space stations and greater international co-operation were being laid out between all involved nations as the Kerbal Space Program planned to put more Kerbals in Space.