Sarnus V-A11
by gc1ceo
uploaded 2016-12-07
(updated 2017-06-25)
mod ship
#sarnus #saturn #kane #apollo


  • Type: VAB
  • Class: ship
  • Part Count: 60
  • Mods: 2


  • Bluedog DB
  • TweakableEverything

The Saturn V, to date, is the largest and most powerful rocket ever launched and carried most of the Apollo missions excluding 7, ASTP, and the Skylab missions. The Sarnus V is an approximation of the Saturn V by Blue Dog Design Bureau and built from the manual specifications. This is the full configuration for a complete mission in a configuration similar to Apollo 11 and includes a munar lander which carries up to two Kerbonauts to and from either the Mun or Minmus.

The Sarnus V is a powerful three stage launcher which carries the Kane-11-3 spacecraft for an extended Munar (or potentially Minmunar) mission. The spacecraft itself is outfitted with a number of experiments, a small test satellite, and a couple of different fuel cells since it lacks any solar panels. The first stage should get the payload into at least the edge of the atmosphere if not into space directly, regardless of the fuel situation it should be ejected once its completed this task. The second stage finishes the ascent, if necessary, and handles the orbital circularization. The third stage is for finishing the orbital circularization, if necessary, and for making the TMI (Trans Munar Injection). I recommend an initial orbit of somewhere around 100km and it doesn’t have to be perfectly circular for a smooth TMI but achieving less eccentricity may make the TMI calculations easier on newer players.

I recommend one of two approaches for the TMI burn. The first utilizes a free return trajectory so that everything, both rocket stage and spacecraft, will return straight to Kerbal if an orbital insertion burn isn’t made. The second is to focus on impacting the spent rocket stage into the Mun and making correction burns with the spacecraft after decoupling to achieve the same fate for the spacecraft.

After a successful TMI burn you should take care when decoupling as the ejection force may alter the trajectory of both the rocket stage and the spacecraft. A safer bet is to orient the craft to either normal or anti-normal before decoupling so that additional prograde or retrograde forces are minimized. However most course corrections after the decoupling can be made with just a bit of RCS and shouldn’t require you to fire the spacecraft’s on-board engine prematurely. If you want some extra challenge you might try flying in formation with the spent rocket stage as was done on Apollo 8.

The journey to the Mun should be fairly uneventful except for monitoring your electric charge and turning on fuel cells as needed.

The MOI (Munar Orbital Insertion) burn is the first burn handled exclusively by the spacecraft’s on-board engine in a typical mission and orbital parameters should be low enough for making the actual landing. The recommendations vary greatly although my personal preference is for about 15-30km although I still landed successfully at much higher orbits.

The Sina lander approximates the earlier lunar lander configurations from the earlier moon landings and carries two out of three of your typical crew down to either the Mun or Minmus. The lander is two-staged with a considerably reduced mass for the ascent stage which gives you some leeway in getting back into orbit. This will leave the descent stage at your landing site so it guarantees some debris but also makes it easier to find your landing sites later.

Your TKI (Trans Kerbin Injection) burn will take between 400 and 500 dv so keep that in mind when expending any fuel such as for using your fuel cells or changing your orbital parameters. The capsule is pretty durable so it can survive a pretty rough re-entry and landing. However it is recommended that you take care in the angle you begin your re-entry and take a shallow descent. The service module should be decoupled upon re-entry and the landing should be fairly easy between the excess ablative shielding and the triple parachutes.

The total payload package including CSM and MEM weigh 27.924t with the MEM weighing 8.517t and the CSM weighing 19.407t. This is included for reference if players wish to utilize the Sarnus V launch vehicle with another payload.


Has been streamlined to include fewer mods in 1.3 with the removal of the extra fuel cells and satellite. The craft was entirely re-built from the ground up and includes some changes in fuel in each stage and overall weight.

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