Year 21, Day 180 (DSV-5 Intrepid, KSEA’s Next Deep Space Vehicle, Launches From The Space Center!)

The Next Deep Space Vehicle, DSV-5 Intrepid is ready to launch! Named after the retired crew shuttle CTS-3 Intrepid, DSV-5 is a Horizon Class DSV, identical to Endeavor and Horizon!

“Wow – that rocket looks big, even from way over at the Tracking Station!”

-Bob, on his way to watch the launch of DSV-5

Mission Command starts calling out rocket status summaries, until finally…

“Lights are green – DSV is go for launch!”
-Gene, at Mission Control

“Look at ‘er go!”

-Bob, at Mission Control

The Jool Heavy Rocket carries the spacecraft higher…

… and higher!

At a 200k orbit, the side stages eject, and Intrepid circularizes it’s orbit around Kerbin!

“Computers say we have a good orbit! Let’s remotely rendevous it with Spacedock and get a crew over there!”
-Gene

Intrepid is remotely piloted until it rendezvouses with Spacedock!

“Mission Control – this is Jeb at Spacedock Control – we have a visual on Intrepid!”
-Jeb

“Wow – I always forget how big these DSV’s are until you see them next to Spacedock!”

-Sean

While Mission Control can pilot the DSV’s remotely for the precision connections needed for docking pilots are always preferred – so Jeb EVA’s outside Spacedock and heads over to Intrepid!

“Mission Control, I have left Spacecdock and am en route to the DSV!”
-Jeb

Jeb sets his EVA rockets to “FULL SPEED DANGER!” and speeds toward the DSV!

“Radar shows you going 10 m/s, make sure you leave enough time to slow down!”
-Sean, on Spacedock

“Don’t worry, I’m a professional!”
-Jeb

Jeb slows down, just in time, and grabs the hand holds under the nose of DSV-5 Endeavor at the last second!

“Got it! Connection made, heading to the cockpit!”
-Jeb

“Eyes on the prize Jeb – let’s get this bird in the nest!”
-Gene

“Roger that.”
-Jeb

Jeb activates the RCS thrusters and matches speed with Spacedock, then orients the massive spacecraft with the docking ports!

“Starting final docking maneuvers…”
-Jeb

“Mission Control… Jeb here… I’m in the pipe, five by five…”
-Jeb

Intrepid slowly moves in to dock until finally, just as the sun sets…

“Intrepid – you show a solid lock – welcome back Jeb! I can’t wait to get over there and start up Intrepid‘s reactor!”
-Sean

Year 21, Day 12 (Spacedock Lithium Refueling Vehicle Launches on Jool Heavy Rocket!)

At the Space Center the next Lithium Refueling Vehicle is ready to launch, and blasts off on top of a Jool Heavy rocket!

The Jool Heavy’s powerful 21 S3 KS-25 “Vector” engines lift the rocket to it’s 200km apogee!

While this isn’t the first Spacedock refueling mission, this is the first launch of the newly redesigned Jool Heavy Rocket!

As it nears it’s 200km apogee, the attached side rockets deplete their fuel…

… and disconnect! The central stage continues it’s burn to 200k… then detaches from the upper stage!

The upper stage’s 3 KR-2L+ “Rhino” engines fire…

… and circularize the massive craft in a stable orbit of Kerbin! The refueling vehicle then performs maneuvers to rendevous with Spacedock!

“Mission Control – Spacedock has the Refueling Vehicle on our scope… you’re cleared to start the automated docking maneuver!”
-Val, on board Spacedock

With the sun creating impressive lens flares, the Refueling Vehicle docks!

“Looks like a good connection with the third refueling Vehicle! We just need one more and Spacedock will be fully stocked with Lithium!”
-Edan, on Spacedock