Year 17, Day 12 (Spaceport Expansion Launches!)

The Sarnus Va Rocket carrying the experimental Habitat Expansion blasts off, heading to the Spaceport!

The vehicle eventually rendezvouses with the Spaceport…

… and Dunwin EVA’s to check things out!

“Looks like it made the trip up OK! Let’s get it installed!”
-Dunwin

The vehicle is remotely piloted closer and closer, until it docks!

The engineers work and before long, the centrifugal ring inflates, and starts spinning!

“We did it! This new habitat is comfy looking too! So far the Spaceport hasn’t spun out of control wildly, so far so good!”
-Dunwin

The Habitat Expansion will remain on the station while the crew tests it for future deep-space applications! They also watch some fun movies.

Year 16, Day 418 (Engineering Specialists Head To Kerbin Spaceport!)

To prepare for the upcoming installation of the Habitat Expansion to the Spaceport, Val will pilot Engineering specialists Kerlorf and Dunwin to the Spaceport!

“I heard Gene saying that if the Expansion goes alright, the Spaceport is going to start having a much larger crew – we can expect even more Aurora Crew launches soon!”
-Val

“Oh wow! I always forget how big the station is! “
-Kerlorf

“Before we dock we need to give the station a once-over… make sure the expansion plans are on track!
-Dunwin

“Everything looks good so far! It’s a shame the fuel tanks up here don’t get used much, except for rescue operations! We could really use fuel depots like this in orbit of Mun!”
-Dunwin

“Heading to the midpoint connection point….”
-Dunwin

“Looks solid. It’s a good idea to check this connection from time to time, it’s the connection point that holds the two halves of the station together!
-Dunwin

Dunwin heads inside the station, and leads the rest of the engineering crew for their preparations for the Habitat expansion!

Year 16, Day 165 (Explorer 6 Rescue Mission!)

The Aurora Crew Vehicle docked at the Kerbin Spaceport undocks – this fully fueled vehicle has been at the station for quite a while, and was intended as an emergency lifeboat for the station crew in a crisis. Mission Control has decided the spacecraft will be remotely piloted and docked to the stranded Explorer 6 crew – marooned in an eccentric orbit around Kerbin!

The ACV activates it’s engine and blasts away from the station – changing it’s inclination to match Explorer 6!

After the rendezvous maneuver is complete, the ACV is within sight of Explorer 6!

“I see it! We’re saved!”
-Sean

The Aurora Crew Vehicle docks with Explorer 6!

“Looks like a solid connection! Let’s get that hatch open and transfer over! Don’t forget all the science!”
-Mitster

Glenica does a thorough search to make sure they haven’t left anything behind – then is the last one to head over to the Crew Vehicle!

The Crew Vehicle detaches from Explorer 6, and heads back to Kerbin!

“Explorer 6 was a good ship! Maybe someday we can refuel it for another adventure!”
-Mitster

“I’m just eager to get back to train for the next Deep Space mission!”
-Glenica

The Aurora Command Module heats up as it burns through Kerbin’s atmosphere!

Until it finally splashes down in the ocean – just east of the Space Center!

“Rescue boats are on the way! Just sit tight and we’ll get you home in no time!”
-Gene

Explorer 6’s crew finally returns home! Not quite like they expected, but they proved KSEA’s equipment and crew were ready for the very long duration missions to Jool – and beyond!

Year 14, Day 279 (Discovery Leaves Kerbin for Laythe!)

Discovery undocks from Kerbin Spaceport!

“OK – I’m backing Discovery away from the Spaceport… nice and slow!”

-Jeb

“Reactors are powering up – looks like full power should be available!”

-Bill

Jeb activates the three Magneto-Plasma-Dynamic thrusters and Discovery takes off!

Everything looks good! We should be ready for the Cryo-Chambers!

-Bill

Jeb hops in…

Then Bill and Bob!

Freezing in 3….2…1…. “

-Bill

With a “ding!” the Discovery crew is frozen in stasis…when they wake up, they should arrive at Jool!

Discovery sails away from Kerbin – radio systems will allow for remote piloting, and monitoring of the crew!

“See you guys in a few years!”

-Gene

The three components of Discovery’s mission should all be in place by Year 17!

Year 14, Day 278 (Intrepid Launches Discovery Crew to Orbit!)

Intrepid blasts off from the Space Center, carrying Jeb, Bill, and Bob! Veteran KSEA pilot Edan is piloting!

The launch stage ejects, and Intrepid enters orbit!

“Almost there! Just a few more more manuevers and we’ll be at the Spaceport!”

-Edan

We’re there! Switching to rear view… taking us in!”

-Edan

Edan pilots the Crew Shuttle closer and closer to the station! This isn’t the easiest task, as the craft actually pilots in reverse, as the docking bay is at the aft of the ship!

“Almost there… almost….”

-Edan

The connection is made! Intrepid arrives at Kerbin Spaceport! Jeb, Bill, and Bob gather their equipment and head out to the Spaceport! As they head to the Discovery docking hatch, Bill catches a look at the ship from the Crew Habitat Cupola!

Wow! That’s one big ship!”

-Bill

Year 13, Day 402 (Explorer 5 Readied For Second Mission)

As an experiment, KSEA decides to test the capabilities of the Explorer 5 spacecraft. Having returned from Duna, is it capable of entering Duna orbit again, and returning safely to Kerbin orbit? If so it would provide a much more cost effective means of transporting Kerbals to and from the red planet.

Explorer 5 docked at Kerbin Spaceport. Discovery can be seen docked in the background.

The new Discovery-class spacecraft design is certainly capable of the trip, however it is overkill to the extreme – DSV-2 Discovery could travel to Duna, return to Kerbin, and repeat the trip without ever needing to refuel!

Gillian, Shepely, and Seely (the current crew on Kerbin Spaceport) start work refuelling Explorer 5 for it’s next mission!

Year 13, Day 158 (Intrepid Returns Crews to Kerbin from Kerbin Spaceport!)

With the return of Explorer 5 and the test flight of Discovery the Kerbin Spaceport has gotten very crowded! Edan, Bill, Orlas, Glenica, and Sean all board CTS-3 Intrepid!

Have a good flight – you soon!”
-Gene

Edan undocks from the Spaceport, and uses RCS thrusters to reach a safe distance from the station! Gilian, Shepely, and Seely remain on the station, conducting the vitally important scientific research that must certainly occur there.

Come back soon! Bring more snacks! “
-Shepely

Intrepid fires its engines to de-orbit… then detaches the service pod that holds cargo (and provides for solar power!)

Hold on everyone! Things are about to get pretty hot!”
-Edan

Intrepid soars through the atmosphere, occasionally usings its airbrake system to slow its decent.

Once past the mountains west of the Space Center, Edan makes the final manuevers to line up for a landing!

“Edan to Mission Control… Intrepid is in the pipe, five by five!”
-Edan

Intrepid touches down on the runway!

A perfect landing! The tired Kerbals exit the Crew Shuttle to rest up for their next mission – Intrepid is recovered and undergoes minor repairs and the standard recovery process to get it ready for its next flight!

Year 13, Day 8 (DSV Refuelling Vehicle Launches and docks with Kerbin Spaceport!)

The DSV refuelling vehicle launches from KSC! Until the logistics hubs on the Spaceport can be retrofitted to allow for the delivery of Lithium and other fuels, these launches are the only way to refuel the Deep Space Vehicles.

The orbital stage finishes firing, then seperates…

… and rendezvouses with the Spaceport!

Jeb, piloting remotely from the Spaceport for the docking manuever, reports some difficulties…

“This thing handles like a pig – a space pig!”
-Jeb

The connection is (finally) made! The Spaceport registers a solid connection to the fuel pipe system, and lithium and monopropellant are pumped from the refuelling vehicle to Discovery.

Year 12, Day 422 (Construction Begins on DSV Refuelling Vehicle)

Construction starts on a refuelling vehicle to deliver Lithium to Kerbin Spaceport, for use with the new class of Deep Space vehicles (such as DSV-2, Discovery.)

The craft will be a reffited version of the spacecraft used to refuel Duna Spaceport, and is set to be launched on the first stage of a Jool-3 rocket!