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A mod aircraft called Athena Mk 2. Built with 113 of the finest parts, its root part is j.cockpit.
Built in the SPH in KSP version 1.0.4.
The Athena Mk 2 builds on the lessons learned with operating the original design in space. ( http://kerbalx.com/logandwj/Athena-SSTO )
I found the original Athena made a good cargo launcher and could get as far out as Geostationary orbit and return reliably, but docking with space stations was problematic to say the least. There was no forward or aft RCS control, and while I had good pitch, yaw and roll control, the vernor thrusters weren’t placed as well as they could have been and to some degree were working against the torque of the reaction wheels along certain angles.
Also an issue was the single standard sized docking port. Lining that up with such a large craft is difficult or at best tedious under good circumstances. But the Mk 1 was nearly impossible to dock without assistance from a tug.
The Mk 2 addresses all of the above aspects:
I replaced the B9 docking port with the OPT in-line docking port - which also happens to have a good supply of Mono-propellant. The ship is thus somewhat longer and a bit heavier than the original, but so far there have been no issues with stability or control authority. And the Athena Mk 2 is still more than capable of lifting itself and any payload to orbit that will fit in the cargo bay. (If you want notes on the proper ascent profile, they are the same as the original Athena.) The OPT In-line docking port also is advantageous because it is able to dock with either standard 1.5 or 2.5 meter docking ports.
Two RCS blisters from the Mk 4 Spaceplane mod system augment the Vernor thrusters and provide solid fore and aft RCS control. The Vernor thrusters have been slightly re-positioned and all angles of orientation and translation are now viable and balanced. Docking translations are no longer an issue and the Athena can be easily docked to a space-station or other craft for re-fueling or transfer of supplies without assistance from docking tugs.
If you downloaded and liked the original Athena, I think you’ll really enjoy the upgraded version!
(UPDATE - I have uploaded a version of the Athena Mk 2 that utilizes a vertical launch option and SABRE boosters. It’s called the
Athena Mk 2V if you’re interested. Link here: http://kerbalx.com/logandwj/Athena-Mk-2V )
- Adjustable Landing Gear
- B9 Aerospace Pack
- EVA Parachutes
- Mark IV Spaceplane System
- Mk 2 Essentials
- OPT Space Plane Parts
- Squad (stock)
- TweakScale - Rescale Everything!
- Type: SPH
- Class: spaceplane
- Part Count: 113
- Mods: 8