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A mod aircraft called Minerva HST. Built with 79 of the finest parts, its root part is j.cockpit.
Built in the SPH in KSP version 1.0.4.
The Minerva is a Hypersonic transport capable of top speeds in excess of Mach 6 (!!!) and able to supercruise at the edge of space at 38,000 meters (the HUD indicator actually will start to show Orbital rather than surface speed calculations. (Note the picture below showing the top speed and altitude recordings)
At those altitudes and speeds, it is unbelievably fuel efficient. The prototype craft circumnavigated Kerbin 3 times while only sipping fuel down to 70% of capacity. I only brought it down because the RTGs exploded from overheating and the APUs were having trouble maintaining the power levels (both issues since corrected).
I want to stress - it had already circumnavigated Kerbin THREE TIMES and could have kept going for another 4-5 trips around the planet maintaining altitude, speed and fuel efficiency at those levels.
All this and it can carry a large payload in the cargo bay while doing so(standard Rockomax
Orange Tank tested).
The bay is wide enough to carry large Rovers (my Beagle 2 Rover will fit nicely in there). I’ve left the bay clear of cargo securing equipment in favor of a user designing their own. Though I have developed an IR Robotics arm and docking port that will secure rovers that roll up the back ramp. I also recommend KAS/KIS system.
With 12 Reaction Wheels in addition to the one in the nose for a total of 13, the Minerva also has the control authority to give you confidence in maneuvers close to the ground - even crazy close ones! (See below set of pics -
Negative Ghost Rider - the pattern is full… WHOOOSH Spills coffee
DAMN IT JEB!!! )
In fact with caution it can even pull high G maneuvers at trans-sonic speeds and altitudes. (Again - see pics)
Note the ramp can be opened in flight with no detriment to aerodynamics at sub-sonic speeds. Put a Rover or armored vehicle in the back with some separatrons and some parachutes to kick it out the back for a speed-drop onto a targeted location.
With the kind of performance numbers the Minerva is capable of achieving, it would not take much work at all to develop a spaceplane SSTO variant. In fact look for one soon… :D
- Adjustable Landing Gear
- B9 Aerospace Pack
- EVA Parachutes
- Kerbal Foundries Wheels and Repulsors ALPHA
- Mk 2 Essentials
- OPT Space Plane Parts
- Squad (stock)
- TweakScale - Rescale Everything!
- Type: SPH
- Class: ship
- Part Count: 79
- Mods: 8
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