Year 22, Day 152 (Refit Crew Shuttle Launches from White Mesa!)

At the White Mesa launch facility the refit Crew Shuttle Adventure is rolled out and fully fueled!

Carson and Edan board the shuttle and start flight checks!

“All systems nominal … Fuel lights are green…. “

-Carson

“All gauges OK… Adventure is ready!”

-Edan

“This is White Mesa Control Tower – you are clear to launch when ready!”

“We are go!”

-Edan

The newly refit Crew Shuttle blasts off – lifted by a Nebula Rocket!

“Woohoo!

-Carson

At the vehicle reaches it’s 100km apogee, the Nebula Rocket powers down, and the protective aerodynamic nose shield ejects!

“Decoupling from Nebula….”

-Edan

“Decoupling complete, powering RCS thrusters to move clear for Nebula de-orbit…”

-Carson

The Nebula Rocket drifts away using its own RCS system to preform a powered de-orbit propulsive landing!

Adventure then fires its LV909 engines to finish propelling itself to a 200km orbit!

“So far so good!

-Edan

Carson suits up, and performs a spacewalk to inspect the shuttle!

“Looks good from the outside! Just normal thermal wear… Looks like it’s within tolerances!”

-Carson

After a full orbital systems check, Edan and Carson start the de-orbit burn back to Kerbin!

“I think I see White Mesa down there!”

-Edan

“Good! Hold on! These White Mesa landings are always a little tricky!”

-Carson

Carson burns fires the engines for a little extra thrust, and glides the shuttle to line up with the landing strip!

“We’re five by five… Touching down!”

-Carson

With the screech of its tires Adventure sets down at White Mesa!

“We’re back!”

-Edan

With a generally successful first flight everyone at KSEA is delighted!

“Good work everyone! If everything checks out Adventure will be back in service soon, and we can build a few new Crew Shuttles to supplement our orbital crew vehicles!”

-Gene, at Mission Control

Year 22, Day 148 (Crew Transport Shuttle Refit Revealed!)

KSEA engineers are excited to reveal the refit of the Crew Shuttle Adventure! The entire Crew Shuttle Program was shut down in Year 17 after the CTS-3 Intrepid suffered a major catastrophe – major nose cone damage from re-entry heat that nearly destroyed the spacecraft! Val is widely credited with saving the entire crew with her calm handling of the disaster!

Since then, engineers have been working on a way to make a safer Crew Shuttle – the result is the refit of the only surviving Crew Transport Shuttle – Adventure! (Intrepid was badly damaged, and Endeavor was dismantled!)

The new Crew Transport Shuttle launches using the Nebula Rocket as a re-usable lifter, which should make the entire Crew Shuttle mission reusable! The vehicle is en route to the White Mesa desert launch facility for initial testing.

“If everything works out with Adventure we’ll see about adding a few new space-planes to our roster! We’ll need some new names though – the DSV fleet took ‘Endeavor’ and ‘Intrepid’ for their latest vehicles!”

-Gene, at Mission Control

Year 21, Day 64 (Aqua-1 Mun Probe Launches from White Mesa!)

The Aqua-1 Probe bound for Mun is ready at the White Mesa Facility…

…and launches!

While the re-usable first stage returns to Kerbin, the probe itself continues into orbit around Kerbin!

“Roger that, we’re showing orbit achieved – you are go for the burn to Mun!”
-Gene

After the burn, Aqua-1 continues it’s voyage to Mun…

Until it arrives, and prepares to burn into a polar orbit!

“Telemetry says Aqua-1 is in position – Glenica, you’re good to start the experiment!”
-Gene, at Mission Control

“OK – deploy arm… extend antenna … activate sensors!”
-Glenica

The antenna arm extends, and folds over 90 degrees, allowing the water sensors to start scanning unobstructed!

“200k altitude looks to be ideal. We should hopefully have some data back soon!”
-Samner, at Mission Control

Year 21, Day 1 (Modular Payload Vehicle Launches from White Mesa on Nebula Heavy Rocket!)

The first day of Year 21 is going to be a big day at White Mesa! It’s a first for two new vehicles: The third revision of the Modular Payload Vehicle, or MPV, will be launching with a LFO (Liquid Fuel/Oxygen) payload! Even bigger news is the first launch of a new Launch Vehicle, the Nebula Heavy Rocket!

The launch goes well, and the Nebula Heavy rockets into the sky above the desert!

The Nebula Heavy is basically three Nebula Rockets bolted together with a larger second stage. While all 3 Nebula rockets return to Kerbin, the second stage is discarded.

The Nebula Heavy reaches it’s 200k apogee, and detaches!

Turning around using RCS thrusters (once clear of the MPV), the Nebula Heavy fires it’s engines to target a landing at KSC! Soon, the three rockets will disconnect and independently land on the surface!

Meanwhile, the MPV fires it’s engine until it’s in a safe 200k orbit of Kerbin!

Mission Control continues piloting the craft closer and closer to the rendevous with Spacedock!

“Mission Control – this is Station Commander … I’ve got a clear view of the MPV out of the Upper Cupola windows! Looks like it’s on course for docking with Endeavor! We’re clear to take over remote control from up here!”
-Val

With Val now piloting remotely, the MPV drifts past the station, and once behind Endeavor Val starts it’s docking maneuver!

“Alright… MPV is lined up…. moving in for final docking maneuvers…”
-Val

The MPV slowly moves in to Endeavor‘s docking bay…

… and connects!

“We’re showing a solid connection up here!”
-Val

“Hey – just what do we need a LFO fuel delivery to a DSV for anyway!?”
-Edan

“I thought you’d never ask! We’re sending another team to Laythe to survey sites for the colony! Congrats Val – you’re the Mission Commander for Endeavor’s Crew Mission 2!”
-Gene, at Mission Control

“Oh wow! Awesome! I can’t wait!”
-Val

Year 20, Day 339 (Crew Vehicle 5 Launches, Crew Vehicle 2 Returns Crew from Spacedock!)

Crew Vehicle 5 blasts off from White Mesa! The spacecraft has a new second stage that should increase fuel supply and allow more mission options – however the primary goal has been more precise landings at the White Mesa facility.

CV5 reaches orbit, and begins docking procedures with Spacedock!

“That new second stage looks good!”
Edan

CV5 docks! Meanwhile, Mirphe, Edan, and Kerlorf all transfer over to CV2 and get ready to return to Kerbin!

“Spacedock this is CV2… we are clear and preparing for reentry burn once clear of the station…”
-Mirphe

The crew vehicle performs the reentry burn…

… and streaks through the atmosphere, heading towards the desert White Mesa facility!

The parachutes deploy, and CV2 heads for a landing!

“Looks like we were a little short from White Mesa – hopefully the new second stage will let us land right on target next time!”
-Mirphe

Everyone hops out of CV2 to get some fresh air, waiting for the rescue teams!

Year 20, Day 107 (New Crew Vehicle Announced!)

KSEA is excited to announce the Mk2 Nebula Crew Vehicle! The Crew Vehicle itself is a modified version of the original Nebula Crew Vehicle, making a number of minor modifications: the escape/landing rockets were tucked down below the Forward RCS system, and the internal storage system was reconfigured for a more balanced spacecraft.

The Rocket itself is entirely new, and provides a versatile new tool to the Kerbin Space Exploration Administration! Designed to be launched from the Desert Facility, White Mesa – the rocket carries the crew vehicle to an apoapsis of 200k, where the Crew Vehicle detaches. Then, the Rocket does a 180 degrees flip and fires it’s engine… changing it’s landing site to the main Space Center! There it will be recovered, refurbished, transported to the Desert Facility, and prepared for it’s next launch!

“This new rocket is going to give us the ability to quickly deliver crews to and from the Spaceport! It looks a bit less silly than the Mk1 too!”
-Gene

Future iterations of the design should allow multiple Nebula Rockets to be strapped together for heavier lifting capability!

Year 6, Day 1 (Enterprise Upgrades KSS Power & Solar Systems!)

screenshot1763.pngVal and Chrisnic blast off in Enterprise, delivering the long promised second power and solar expansion to the station!  screenshot1765.png

Chrisnic, one of the most experienced engineers on the KSEA team will supervise the installation!

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The module remotely guides itself into position…

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Then Chrisnic leaves Enterprise to investigate!

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Deploying solar arrays!  Wow! These are huge!   Both deployed perfectly.  Returning to Enterprise!

-Chrisnic

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Enterprise departs!  The Heavy Cargo Shuttle will be trying something new today, landing at White Mesa!  The shuttle will then be flown back to the VAB for repairs and to be readied for its next launch!

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Enterprise does its “belly flop” manuever to slow down its reentry….

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Then glides to the runway!

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A great landing! Val and Chrisnic rest up for their next mission!