December 10th, 1958; Baikonur Kosmodrone.
“Greetings everyone, and welcome to the space centre for our end of the year conference. We’ll be covering a few things, and I’ll take questions at the end”, Gene began the conference.
“First off, 11 days ago, we launched a new rocket to take three of our brave kerbonauts around the moon – this was part of an innovative program on our coming improved life support systems, as well as a new rocket design, where the interstages were angled instead of the stages themselves – providing better air resistance upon cutting a stage”.
“The rocket placed the payload into a nice LEO orbit, from which it began its intercept burn towards the Moon. Just prior to this, the ships engineer performed an EVA to look the new over one final time while in orbit, documenting the looks of it”.
“As the crew were orbiting the Moon, Kommander Calney Kerman went outside and got a really nice image of the Command and Service sections above the Moon, with the Earth in the background”.
“Just as they completed their engine burn to return three days ago, Bob said goodbye to Bill on-board the station and departed in the Kerlab Transport. As Bob left the station, he got a few pictures of Kerlab as Bill were performing the shut-down procedures”.
“As Bob left the station, he began his descent taking him down into the Indian Ocean south of the Satish Dwahan launch site. An orbit later, Bill fired up the engines on the Kerlab Emergency Pod, beginning a descent towards the same spot. As the burn completed, he separated from the station, flying almost parallel with it towards the ground. Without protection, Kerlab disintegrated above Africa and the Indian ocean, while Bill landed safely in the water”.
“Three days later, the LLO-1 mission landed safely back on Earth as well. After that, a brief excursion to LEO – since we have a spare rocket – is all that’s left of this year. By December 20th, we’re planning an extended two week holiday for everyone at the space centre, before the new year begins”.
As Gene’s speech came to an end, a few reporters indicated that they had a question, and Gene indicated for the representative from the Kerbinian Star to proceed.
“Why scuttle the station? Doesn’t it still work?”, the reporter wanted to know.
“Yes, it still worked, but the scientific equipment was worn down, the power system insufficient and we frankly have much better systems, not to mention much more advanced life support systems. We are planning to build a Kerbinian Space Station with all we have learned from Kerlab, and instead of leaving it defunct in orbit, we wanted to it was taken down safely, instead of leaving it up there as a potential navigation hazard”, Gene answered.
With the question answered, Gene indicated for the next question.
“With all the plans about the KSS, and interplanetary probes, and maybe more returns to the Moon, how are you handling all that? It seems like a lot?”, the reporter from the Kerbinian Workers Journal asked.
“Well, there are really two answers required for that”, Gene began.
“As you know, the Illyriens have spent the year on several long distance missions. We’re also planning those in the coming year, but it was quickly evident a year ago, that we were starting to have severe issues with our infrastructure because we were working consecutively from two sites – we simply needed to focus on that. So that’s what been happening this past year, we’ve been focussing on shorter duration mission for various government agencies and private contractors to get our facilities and number of employees expanded”.
“And we’ve done exactly that – we now employ more than 1400 people in total, our Baikonur site has three assembly lines and a launchpad capable of launching all components for the coming KSS. This allows our Satish site to focus on more exploratory missions only, and while it only has two production lines, they are slightly larger. Lastly, we have invested in hiring more graduates to our scientific and engineering staff, to keep our advanced technology incoming and have built up a cash reserve to implement the construction of the KSS. The KSS will, after all be a purely scientific project, that receives no government funding”.
With that, the conference slowly came to a close, with Gene answering a few more questions about upcoming launches and the schedule for these.
End of year status:
- About 3 million saved up for KSS unlocks and launches.
- 300 science (+700 in MapSats that are bugged, but fixed in 1.2.2).
- 4 science/day (5 techs queued).
- Satish VAB: 23/15, SPH: 5.
- Baikonur VAB: 15/8/7, SPH: 5.
- Total BP/s at 78 – but only when building 5 rockets and 2 planes at the same time.
Swap USI LS with TAC LS, updating to KSP 1.2.2 and increase terminal velocity for StageRecovery to 3500.