Sunday, July 30, 2006

New site

Most of the new site works, but it is still under construction. It should be finished in a couple days

Monday, July 24, 2006

Apollo on cheerios

No more steroids for you. According to, Apollo 2.0/CEV now renamed project Orion has been put on a diet. They are also hinting at a redesign of the "Stick" CLV to launch Orion now. I still can't get over why NASA absolutely has to have its own dedicated launch vehicle for the Orion, As the Orion gets smaller and lighter with each redesign, The reasons for not using existing lauchers(Atlas 5, Delta 4) fade into the darkness. That is of course until Nasa creates new excuses, as to why it needs the CLV.

Caught up in "COTS"
Interesting article over on MSNBC's cosmic log. A disturbing point however, The "homework"(I presume paperwork) is really bogging down Rocketplane Kistler, to point that its suborbital learjet(A project not related to COTS) test program for next year has been "crimped". Things must be bad if they have to retask employees working on an unrelated project, to fill out paperwork.

Bigelow has released new images from Genesis
Looks pretty snappy :)

Spent some time surfing the Orbiter community tonight
BTW Antonio's, Simcosmos site(if you haven't discovered it yet) is the best place to start

anyways, Mustard has pointed out to me that the CBM texture I got from him, are made by "Well" of the the French Orbiter community. I will be changing the .PDF in the add-ons that use the texture, to credit Well
"Give credit, Where credit is due"

Friday, July 21, 2006

KSLV is done

But orbithanger is not co-operating with me at the moment, I keep getting connection time outs. I'm going to try again tomorrow.

Some press releases are starting to come out on the soyuz upgrades.(it's basically the same as what's in my blog post from a couple of days ago)

press release

TMA-13 is expected to be the first flight of the upgraded soyuz with Kaleri, and Padalka onboard

Parom, I thought it was in limbo with the Kliper program. Apparently it isn't, first flight is expected in 2009. Parom will be based on the upgraded Soyuz and have an expected lifetime of 15 years, It will not only increase up mass to the station, but will also play a key role in the circum/orbit lunar program

I should have made this clear in my last post. The Soyuz LOK-M/ACTS is the ultimate evolution of what soyuz could be, according to energia's patent drawings. I suspect the LOK-M will be watered down into something that existing launchers can handle

Anyways I made some textures tonight for Fregat, part of my Angara project

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Kliper, Just hopes and dreams

Although Flight Global has reported that the Russian reusable spacecraft tender has been cancelled, Roskosmos press release states that's it will re-evaluate its needs for a next generation spacecraft *AFTER* the Soyuz upgrade. Which basically puts kliper in limbo

Roskosmos press release

The soyuz TMA upgrade will be a modernization of spacecraft components(some of which dates back to the 60's) and centralization of spacecraft systems. For example the communication systems onboard TMA (
command radio link, telemetry, voice, television) each has is own antenna feeder unit, transmitters, receivers and amplifiers, when it could be sharing one if it was centralized. cost, production time and weight will be lower as a result. The upgrade will also cover extending soyuz lifeboat capability time from 180 to 360 days. Soyuz will also gain circumlunar capabilities in this upgrade

-lunar orbit capabillites
-service module extended 1m for additional consumables
-high gain antenna on orbital module
-lavochkin interplanetary computer
-external tank(from fregat SB) mounted to service module
-gross weight 9500KG or 13500KG with external tank
-ESA eventually will produce domestic service/orbital module (ATV derived?)

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Hot Flamey stuff

that comes out of the thruster thingo is accelleratized to the fastness of that noisy stuff you hear by passing through an other-way funnel-like thingy before it reaches the funnel-like things you see, and by going through the funnel-like things it embiggens, which acceleratizes it to several times faster than that noisy stuff you hear. The faster the flamey stuff leaves the thruster thingo, the faster the rocket travels when it runs out of the gunk it burns. :)

KSLV is almost done now, Model+configs completed. I made a simple launch site for it, nothing fancy. Just have to make a PDF for it and its done

I having alot of fun useing this program, so quick fast and easy, but I have noticed some limitations already. 1m in sketchup is not 1m in orbiter(more like a KM, its huge), textures and curved surfaces, have problems. if you want textures and have curved surfaces, you lose all smoothing efects, if you want smooth curved meshs and textures, textures come out screwed up. sketchup is great for box type models, like sattelites, launch sites and buildings, but curved models(if you plan on useing textures) like rockets, look like crap with no smoothing. Oh well, If those limitations get fixed I would give up animator in a heartbeat, but for now I think they compliment each other rather nicely

Has Isreal lost its mind?, self defense is one thing, but bombing out basic services(water, power, airports, bridges, roads, gas lines) is going to turn Lebanon into a wellfare state for the next 5-10 years, while they rebuild basic services. Not to mention the hate and distrust this crisis will generate towards Isreal. Stupid is all it is, disproportionate warfare at its best

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Fly me to the Moon

I was given some more great info on China's Chang'e program, I put some of the pics up on my flickr site. I still get the general impression that the western media knows more about a manned Chinese lunar landing than China's CLEP(China's space agency). But if you take away the Chinese red moon rising threat(hyped by western media) what reasons does NASA truly have to justify the very large amount of money needed for the current CEV program?. There is a strong interest in the Kliper/PTK replacement, ESA/RKA's upcoming Advanced Crew Transport System, but contrary to western reports there is no Chinese manned lunar program at the moment. FYI the Chinese showed greater interest in kliper than both ESA and JAXA did. Yang Liwei(first taikonaght) and various representatives of China's space program made frequent trips to energia for updates on the kliper program. If ESA/RKA selects the ACTS as the soyuz replacement, I wouldn't be surprised if the Chinese end up playing a big role in the ACTS program.

My Flickr site

Congrats to Discovery on a clean launch, Can't wait until its back home safe and sound. Hopefully the shuttle missions become common again.
And congrats to Bigelow on the succesfull launch of Genesis 1

KSLV- I had hoped to have it done today, But I ended up learning how to use a program called sketchup, I didn't plan to spend much time with it, but the proogram is really good, so simple but very powerful, I just wish it wasn't so expensive, $500 for the full version, $%#@!!!!!. Ahem, but if you use the free version to model with and then use the 8hour full version demo for conversions to other file formats, I should be able to crank out lots of orbiter models from sketchup. I have noticed that you can write scripts for freebie version to convert to other file formats. It would be great if someone wrote one to support Orbiter's .msh format.
Great program, hopefully a programmer from the orbiter community will make a conversion program for the freebie version.

Sketchup site

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Canada Day

Woo Hoo, its Canada Day which means a long weekend. I'm buggering off, see ya next week lol. I'm sticking around to see the shuttle launch, and waiting for the traffic to die down, then I'm gone.

The SimRoskosmos poll didn't turn out too bad, got more votes than I thought it would get, but not really enough to justify the time it would take to get this going. Its being put in parking orbit for now :). The poll did show that the manned lunar program was the most popular, and coincidently ESA and Roskosmos are reshaping the manned program with lunar goals in mind. early concepts show an enlarged soyuz(but its more squat then soyuz, very simular to the energia mars accent capsule) as the vehicle of choice, I guess that kliper and PTK are out of the running now. Just have to wait and see

Any google earth users?
I've noticed that baikonur has been updated with highres imagery

KSLV update
I E-mailed the Korean Aerospace Research Institute(KARI) looking for Info on the KSLV, didn't get much info from them. They will release details on the KSLV when they have the ground breaking ceremony for the launch site. Its seems that their launch pad wont be angara based(I thought it would be), the low res picture I did get, shows a very simple uncluttered pad(like orbitals taurus/minotaur sites). I might make or I might release it without a Launch site