We must keep pushing

December 6th, 1951, Baikonur Kosmodrone.

We must keep pushing.

Apparently the insidious Illyriens have a spy in our space program, and after Valentinas first mishap, they managed to get a kerbal into space before us. The Glorious Leader is not happy.

To counter this, the intelligence people have started looking at how we can spy on them – although no one wants to go over there, so it is probably going to be done in other manners.

In the mean time we’ve kept pressing our advantage, and we had a modified Boomer 2 launch recently, carrying a brand new scientific payload to measure radiation and micrometeorite impacts in space – at least we are keeping the scientific lead.

Modified Boomer 2, taking a scientific payload to 350 km and then returning.

The scientific data collected is interesting, but our scientists are swamped with data – it will take them years to progress our understanding and create better rocket parts.

In the mean time, we must keep our records. One thing the Illyriens have not been able to do is get as high as us. While Boomer 3 with its nearly 1200 km is far above the nearly 400 km that the Illyriens have accomplished, Werner thought that we could do better – and he did.

Boomer 4 standing tall in the VAB, just prior to being rolled out. The launch happened at night, to discourage curious Illyriens.

The Boomer 4 is the longest and heaviest rocket we’ve ever made, and it started hurtling back towards the surface as I began my report.

The rocket weigh in at an impressive 39.999 tonnes, and made the launchpad produce worrying noises before it launched. The rocket was a resounding success though, getting a full 3000 km up, and reaching speeds so far unheard of, passing 6000 m/s on its way down.

Boomer 4-Single-Log
Boomer 4 Ascent and return data. The data connection got a bit wonky on the way down, due to limited signal reception.

I don’t think our new height record stands to be broken any time soon, and even if it did, Werner says that he can probably squeeze a few hundred kilometres extra out of the Boomer 4 design – although he’s also promising that they will soon have new more powerful rockets, that will eclipse our current capabilities – there’s even talk of actually being able to make something stay up in space!

–Gene Kerman


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