Year 7, Day 248 (Refit of Shuttle Resolute Begins)

Engineers start refit work on the Heavy Cargo Shuttle (HCS) Resolute!

The key goals of the refit are:

  • To improve flight characteristics both on launch and return
  • Upgrade the launch vehicle to provide more power.
  • Increase the launch vehicle recoverability.
  • Add cool lights.

Part of this refit will involve the V3 launcher to lose its Orbital Assist Vehicle (OAV), which has proven to be an expensive and wasteful addition to the HCS, as this stage is entirely disposable.

Year 7, Day 121 (Wanderer Lands On Eve)

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Wanderer arrives at Eve – there should be just enough fuel to circularize!

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Wander burns into its orbit of Eve! The orbit isn’t perfectly circular, but it’s an orbit!  So far the Eve Communications Network has been performing perfectly!  Scientists are eager and nervous to see if the Eve lander will survive the landing, and transmit from the surface! screenshot16.png

Because of the tremendous speed of the lander, the Re-entry rockets fire so that the craft will slow down in the atmosphere for a few orbits before actually taking the final plunge. screenshot18.png

While Eve has been mapped from orbit, the particulars of navigating the planets ultra dense atmosphere has proven challenging for KSEA mission planners!screenshot15.png

While tedious, the orbital dipping method does appear to be a good strategy – impatient engineers are already working on a replacement for the next Eve lander though!screenshot24.png

The protective shell ejects and the Wanderer rover slowly glides to the surface!

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Cheers are heard throughout KSC – Rover has safely landed on the surface and started transmitting science! After transmitting the science data from the surface the rover will need to recharge… then scientists will see if surface exploration is possible!

 

Year 7, Day 5 (Eve Communications Network Established)

screenshot232.pngIn order to prepare for future Eve missions, KSEA personnel have come up with a plan to use the existing assets at Eve, the Eve Explorer and  the Eve Surveyor, to create an Eve Communications Network.

The planned maneuvers go well – the first two research spacecraft at Eve will now serve a new purpose… paving a path for future exploration of the purple world!

The ECN should provide the groundwork for a future mission that KSEA has cryptically promised will really get things rolling on the exploration of Eve!