November 11th, 1954, Kerbinia Ministry of Information and Truth.
In a rare, but more frequently occurring event, Gene Kerman has been flown to the capital of Kerbinia, to stand with the IT Minster Ali Kerman, and present the latest ground-breaking mission of the Kerbinia Space Agency.
“Yes, the Venus probe has been an astounding success – and I now leave you in the capable hands of Gene Kerman, to explain the details of why we are so far ahead of the Illyriens, who’s highest achievement have been to crash a probe gently on the Moon, while we have moved on to exploring a different planet instead of the same old Moon – not to mention having made manned orbits” the Minster finishes, as he leaves the podium to Gene Kerman.
“Yes, well”, Gene begins, “the launch itself was fairly well on track, and 16 days ago our engineers spent a couple of nerve-wrecking hours performing final adjustments so that the probe would pass through the planets upper atmosphere. Sadly our instruments confirmed what we already suspected – that it will be very difficult, not to say impossible, for kerbals to live there.”.
The assembled members of the press all started asking about the manoeuvre and why it was difficult, because it seemed very simple and easy adjustments according to them.
“Well, no”, Gene again goes, “easy enough to calculate, but quite another matter to execute. The engineers spent a very long time, because every time they pushed a button it took about two minutes before the probe reacted – and by then it could have turned – so it was a very delicate process. I do have a few slides to show of the approach.”
“As you can see, the Kamera is not far from the antenna, and the antenna is visible in all the pictures, also giving the engineers a bit of guidance for keeping the direction and anticipating course drift.”.
“We collected a good deal of science approaching, while passing the atmosphere and flying away. We estimate that our scientists will need a decade to process it all – so we are definitely looking towards the Kerbinian universities for more scientists”.
“As the approach was from the dark side, we turned the probe around to get some pictures leaving as well from the sun side.”.
“On that note, I will turn over to questions to the Minister again, but leave with the note that the probe is still very much alive, orbiting the Sun – and we never know what it might encounter along the way – maybe even an Illyrien probe in a few decades, or perhaps a century”.