Kerbal Space Center

From Kerbal Space Program Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Kerbal Space Center
Kerbal Space Center
Location TinyKerbin.png Kerbin
0° 6′ 9″ S
74° 34′ 31″ W
Altitude ~68.41 m
Since version 0.7.3
The Kerbal Space Center illuminated at night

The Kerbal Space Center (abbr. KSC), located on Kerbin, is the main area where all management of the Kerbal Space Program happens. It features thirteen buildings and structures on an approximately 25 km² plateau. All buildings, except for the runway, are placed on hexagonal sections and can be destroyed if Indestructible Facilities is disabled in the difficulty settings.

In Career mode, the buildings can be upgraded and have three levels, with the starting buildings having significant restrictions, including limitations on craft mass, action groups, or the ability to track asteroids. Building upgrades cost funds and can be requested by right clicking the building in question.

The KSC and each of its buildings are biomes which can be examined for science. Additional biomes become available for some buildings as they are upgraded.

Primary structures

The costs shown here assume a career played on the default Normal difficulty. The actual cost for an upgrade is the number displayed below multiplied by the Funds Penalties setting.

Vehicle Assembly Building

→ Main article: Vehicle Assembly Building

The Vehicle Assembly Building (abbr. VAB) is a large construction facility at KSC, where rockets and other vertically launched spacecraft can be designed. Craft designed in the VAB can only be launched from the Launch Pad, though it is possible to import vessels between the VAB and SPH.

Level Cost Supported part count Action groups available
1 Start 30 None
2 225 000 255 Basic: Abort, Brakes, Gear, Lights, RCS, SAS, Stage
3 845 000 Unlimited Basic and Custom 1-10

The default actions associated with the basic groups (except abort) are always available - it's always possible to stage, turn lights on and off, etc. - but until the VAB is upgraded they can't contain arbitrary actions.

Launch pad

→ Main article: Launch Pad

Craft designed in the VAB will be launched from the launch pad. This launch platform allows vertical launches, or may serve as a starting point for rovers. It is too small to be useful for craft that require take off or landing runs.

Level Cost Max vessel height (m) Max vessel width (m) Max vessel mass (t)
1 Start 20.0 21.2 18
2 75 000 36.0 39.6 140
3 282 000 Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited

Spaceplane Hangar

→ Main article: Spaceplane Hangar

The Spaceplane Hangar (abbr. SPH) is a facility similar to the VAB that allows construction of aircraft and spacecraft in a horizontal environment which can then be launched from a conventional runway.

Level Cost Supported part count Action groups available
1 Start 30 None
2 225 000 255 Basic: Abort, Brakes, Gear, Lights, RCS, SAS, Stage
3 845 000 Unlimited Basic and Custom 1-10

The default actions associated with the basic groups (except abort) are always available - it's always possible to stage, turn lights on and off, etc. - but until the SPH is upgraded you can't add arbitrary actions.


→ Main article: Runway

Vessels designed in the Space Plane Hangar can only be launched from the runway. It can also be used for landing. At the moment there is only one runway (09/27) in service with a length of 2526 m going from east to west and a width of 70 m. There is also a runway on an island to the southeast, which is available for landing but not launching. By default, craft designed in the SPH face a 90° heading (facing east) and start from the west end.

The starting runway is just a dirt track. It's so uneven and bumpy that it's usually easier to land (and, with some planes, take off) on the hills to the west instead - or resort to parachutes.

Level Cost Max vessel length (m) Max vessel width/height (m) Max vessel mass (t)
1 Start 20 15 18
2 75 000 36 28 140
3 282 000 Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited

Tracking Station

→ Main article: Tracking Station

The Tracking Station allows access, observation and management of all missions currently active, including splashed-down or landed ships. Note that this does not include crashed or otherwise ended missions. Any Kerbals, craft or debris safely on Kerbin's surface can be recovered here (debris around the KSC can also be recovered directly from the main screen). Debris can be tracked and deleted here. Celestial bodies can also be observed at the Tracking Station.

Level Cost Functions
1 Start Orbits visible in map, flight planning available (with upgraded Mission Control)
2 150 000 Patched Conics visible in map
3 563 000 Patched Conics visible in map and unknown object tracking

Astronaut Complex

→ Main article: Astronaut Complex

The Astronaut Complex allows hiring of astronauts to join the crew of future missions.

Level Cost Capacity Kerbals can EVA and plant flags
1 Start 5 Kerbals Unavailable
2 75 000 12 Kerbals Available
3 282 000 Unlimited Available

Flag Pole

→ Main article: Flag Pole

The Flag Pole is located in front of the Astronaut Complex and can be used to select a default mission flag.

Secondary structures

Research and Development

→ Main article: Research and Development

The Research and Development building allows players to unlock spacecraft parts in career and science mode by researching nodes on the tech tree. All science archives are stored here.

Level Cost Science limit Surface samples and resource transfer
1 Start 100 Unavailable
2 451 000 500 Available
3 1 690 000 Unlimited Available

Mission Control

→ Main article: Mission Control

Mission Control is a small building located north of the VAB and east of the SPH. It is used for getting contracts.

MC Front.png
Level Cost Active contracts Flight planning
1 Start 2 Unavailable
2 75 000 7 Available
3 282 000 Unlimited Available

Administration Building

→ Main article: Administration Building

The Administration Building is a small building in face of the Astronaut Complex. It is can be used for getting/using strategies.

Administration Facility.jpg
Level Cost Active strategies Commitment
1 Start 1 25.0%
2 150 000 3 60.0%
3 563 000 5 100.0%

Non-functional structures

The illuminated water tower at night

Coolant Tanks

A big globular Coolant Tank with a climbable ladder as well as three smaller Coolant Tanks can be found south-west of the Launchpad.

Water Tower

Located south-east of the Launchpad, the Water Tower is about as tall as 1/3 of the VAB. It is part of an unseen, non-functional Sound Suppression Water System similar to the one at Launch Complex 39 in real life.

Flag Pole

A second flag pole can be found on the northwest of the Launch Pad.


The crawlerway connects VAB with the launchpad. It's upgraded along with the launchpad, getting more advanced tracks.

Location of the functional buildings in the Space Center

KSP ksc.jpg
  1. Vehicle Assembly Building
  2. Launch pad
  3. Spaceplane Hangar
  4. Runway
  5. Tracking Station
  6. Astronaut Complex
  7. Flag Pole
  8. Research and Development
  9. Administration Building
  10. Mission Control

Location of the KSC on Kerbin, From Orbit


The KSC is on a roughly square-shaped, sandy peninsula on the east coast of an Africa-shaped continent. The launch pad is precisely on the equator. To assist in spotting the KSC from orbit, please refer to this handy map (it's marked with the red arrow):

See also