Year 22, Day 123-126 (New Mun Lander Launches to Mun Spaceport!)

A Jool Rocket takes off from the Space Center, carrying a new Mun Lander – the Heavy Mun Lander!

The Heavy Mun Lander circularizes, and orbits Kerbin, then takes off to Mun!


Year 21, Day 126

After a three day transit, the Heavy Mun Lander arrives at Mun!

The Heavy Mun Lander docks at Mun Spaceport!

“This new Mun Lander can carry three Kerbals… AND transport the rovers to new locations! It’ll be exciting to see what these can do!”
-Malcolm

Year 22, Day 84 (DSV-3 Horizon Arrives at Sarnus!)

On board Horizon, Kimmy and the rest of the crew start waking up from their Cryo-sleep!

“Good morning everyone!”
-Kimmy, Mission Science Specialist

“Good morning! Let’s get the systems ready for the approach to Slate!”

-Chrisnic, Mission Engineer

The crew rushes to the bridge – when Mitster spots Sarnus!

“Get a picture Kimmy!”
-Mitster

“Wow! That’s the first picture Kerbals have ever taken of Sarnus!”
-Kimmy

“…and look how small the sun looks from out here – wow!”
-Kimmy

The crew starts powering up systems and verifies full communication with the Kerbin Deep Space Relay Network! After a time delay, a message comes back from Kerbin!

Horizon – this is Gene at Mission Control, back on Kerbin! We’re reading your transmissions loud and clear – good luck!”
-Gene, at Mission Control

The Horizon speeds toward Sarnus…

…and arrives at it’s close approach to Slate, the large moon of Sarnus!

“Main engine … firing! Reactor is showing full power!”
-Chrisnic

The capture burn into orbit lasts nearly 2 minutes!

Finally, the ship is captured into orbit of Slate!

“Looks like we’ve got orbit! Good work everyone! Time to disconnect the communications probe!”
-Mitster

“Comm dishes are… deployed – undocking probe!”
-Chrisnic

The probe drifts away from DSV-3 Horizon! The satellite arrays should provide full communication with Kerbin for missions!

As horizon orbits around Slate, the crew starts reviewing data from the orbital insertion, as well as collecting tons of new data from the Sarnusian moon!

Horizon’s cargo bay opens, and the science equipment on the lander starts collecting data! However, Kimmy is the first to crunch the numbers and has some bad news!

“Uh oh! It looks like Slate is much more massive than we thought… this data says that we’re dealing with a lot more gravity than the lander was designed for!”
-Kimmy

The crew discusses the situation with Mission Control, and a novel solution is found – change the mission parameters to land on the smaller Sarnusian moon of Eeloo!

“No problem – we can transit to Eeloo in 5 days! Plugging in the maneuver!”
-Mitster

Before departing, Horizon collects information over many biomes as it circles the moon – Kimmy even climbs out and conducts visual surveys for several full orbits!

5 days later, on Day 89, Horizon begins it’s maneuver to Eeloo!

The nuclear engine fires…

… and the Horizon is propelled away from Slate, toward Eeloo!

Another 5 days later on Day 94, Horizon circularizes it’s orbit around Eeloo!

“Looks like orbit has been achieved! Eeloo is pretty similar to Mun – just a bit bigger – our lander shouldn’t have an problems!”

-Chrisnic

“We just need to find a good landing site. Maybe we can repurpose one of the survey sattelites in orbit of Slate? They should have enough deltaV to make it here!”
-Kimmy

Mission Control agrees, and scientists begin working on maneuvers to bring the Slate Surveyor to Eeloo!

Year 22, Day 1 (Sarnus Station Launches!)

Sarnus Station is finally complete, and it’s rolled out just in time to launch on the first day of Year 22!

“What a fun way to start the new year!”
-Samner, Viewing the launch from Mission Control

The Nova Rocket, KSEA’s most powerful heavy lifter, carries the station into space!

Most Kerbals around the Space Center will typically stop what they’re working on, and gather to watch Nova launches – the massive rockets are quite the sight to see, and launch very rarely!

The second stage separates, as the first stage heads back to a fiery reentry into Kerbin’s oceans! At a 2000 km apogee, the station circularizes!

“We’re showing all systems nominal. Let’s send the signal to start up the reactor.”
-Gene, at Mission Control

The nuclear reactor starts up – and the boards all show green!

“Reactor at full output – I think we’re OK to go!”
-Glenica, at the Science Station at Mission Control

The DSV-class engine fires… and alarm bells go off!

“That thing isn’t getting enough cooling! Let’s power it down to 50 percent power… otherwise it might explode!”
-Glenica

The engine is cooled down, but engineers start scratching notes in their design books for the next Sarnus-bound rocket to use this design!

Sarnus Station speeds toward Sarnus… it will arrive in just over 3 years! Once in orbit, crews from visiting DSV’s will have a home to rest at when exploring around Sarnus!

“These nuclear engines have really opened up the solar system to exploration – a trip to Sarnus in just 3 years! Who would have thought it possible!”
-Edan

Year 21, Day 392 (KSEA Announces Sarnus Station Plans!)

Blueprints have been released for Sarnus Station, a new deep space research station to be placed in orbit of Sarnus! The station will be launched aboard one of the ultra-heavy Nova Rockets, and carried to Sarnus by a modified DSV class nuclear drive! Once at Sarnus the same nuclear reactor will provide the station with ongoing power. The new Life Support Cargo Modules add a significant amount of mass to the station, however they will hold up to 60 years of life support materials for a crew of 3!

“This is the first step to letting us conduct serious investigation of the Sarnus planetary system! Future expansions will eventually grow the station, and it may even be moved into a different orbit, depending on what we need in future years!”
-Gene, at Mission Control

Year 21, Day 360 (Aurora Base Power Upgrade Mission)

Aurora Base has been having power difficulties – occasionally it will run out of power over night! A larger battery bank is required, so a small mission to upgrade the base’s power systems is launched on a Nebula Rocket!

The reusable first stage ejects, and returns to Kerbin!

The Power Module continues it’s trajectory to Mun!

Once in Mun orbit, the Power Module starts it’s descent…

…landing next to Aurora Base!

The module rolls up and docks to the Green House module!

Looks like a good connection… those battery banks should solve the problem! With the Green House and the life support systems all running this base takes a surprising amount of power! We may need to consider a nuclear reactor for some of our future bases where solar won’t work!”
-Bill, at Aurora Base

Year 21, Day 352 (DSV-2 Crew Starts Exploring Duna Craters!)

Seely climbs out, and repacks the landing parachute!

“There we go – repacked! I’m heading down!”
-Seely

Soon, Tamre and Mirphe climb out!

“It’s so pretty here! We have a lot of time but we should start getting science data right away!”
-Tamre

“Flag’s planted! Let’s get the science kits set up so we can start exploring!”
-Mirphe

Tamre starts setting up the science equipment!

“That’s all of it! Weather station is up and running – the forecast looks cold and windy!”
-Tamre

Year 21, Day 350 (New Mun Lander Announced!)

KSEA releases plan for a new Mun Lander! The heaviest Mun Lander yet, the Heavy Mun Lander can transport three Kerbals to the surface and move various payloads, such as Rovers or base components!

This will be the first Mun Lander that won’t be delivered with Aurora Missions – as it’s simply too big! Instead, mission planners intend to provide additional fuel to re-load the Space Port instead!

“I can’t wait to test that new lander!”
-Jeb

Year 21, Day 341 (DSV-2 Crew Heads to Duna Surface!)

After a considerable time aboard Duna Spaceport, Mirphe, Tamre, and Seely head down to the surface!

“Hold on to something everybody… these landers are pretty rough on the way down!”
-Mirphe

The rear airbrakes deploy, and the lander heads nose-first into the Duna atmosphere!

“We’re going so fast! I hope we decelerate with enough time to deploy the chutes!”
-Seely

“Chutes deployed! And just in time too!”
-Mirphe

The lander sets down on the surface of Duna! Back on Kerbin, looking over the landing metrics, Gene frowns!

“That wasn’t just a close one – that was really close! The parachutes barely had enough time to deploy! I think we need to start looking at a next generation lander for Duna!”
-Gene

Engineers start looking at prototype designs… meanwhile the crew gets ready to explore the surface of Duna!