As part of the upcoming Pathfinder missions, several probe designs need real-world testing, beyond what a simple simulation can provide.
To help facilitate this, Enterprise is loaded with 3 of the new probes and heads to the launchpad! Mirphe will be piloting the shuttle, and Chrisnic will be onboard to supervise the launches!
So far so good! Launcher is away, circularizing Enterprise’s orbit!
Once Enterprise is in a stable orbit, the cargo bay doors open – time to test some probes! The first launch is the Mk 6 Atmospheric Probe – designed for water landings on Laythe, Jool’s closest moon and Kerbin-look-a-like!
Probe is away! Remote systems responding… sending it for a water landing!
The probe drifts away from Enterprise until it’s time to fire the retro rockets that will take it to the surface…
Probe is on course – all systems nominal!
The parachute deploys, and the probe drifts slowly to the ocean surface!
Splashdown! The probe lands safely and the solar panels deploy – all systems seem to be working perfectly!
“I’d call that a success!”
KSEA Search and Rescue heads out to recover the probe, and the Enterprise crew rests for a day before the next launch!