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A mod aircraft called SP-2 Northrop Switchblade. Built with 225 of components made by the lowest bidder, its root part is B9.Cockpit.MK2.Body.Crew.2m.
Built in the SPH in KSP version 0.90.0.
1) B9 Aerospace
2) B9 Procedural Parts
5) Infernal Robotics
6) Procedural Fairings
8) Ven’s Stock Part Revamp (Optional but appearance will differ if you used Squad’s parts and may cause clipping)
Warning: Experimental airfoil design. Fly with caution and do not exceed 15 deg AoA when subsonic or during re-entry! SAS should be on at all times and Flight Assistance (DCA) set to velocity scaling of 120m/s is very useful during subsonic climb.
The Switchblade is inspired by a Northrop patent design featuring forward swept variable geometry wings that fold flat to the side of the fuselage to create a low aspect delta shape optimal for supersonic flight. While no prototype was known to be flown, it did feature prominently in the movie Stealth as the fictional F/A-37 Talon.
This spaceplane is no Talon however - it is far larger with a maximum conventional takeoff weight of 100 tons and can send a satellite into orbit. Orbital launch mode is not for the faint of heart, you will need to exercise great caution with learning how to handle forward swept wings across a whole range of airspeeds and flight conditions. Takeoff with orbital payload requires the full KSC runway length. Activate lift jets from 70m/s or 150 knots and start pulling up until the rear VTOL bay doors nearly touch the runway. You will take to the air around 200 knots of airspeed at the end of the runway. Start a climb at 10m/s ascent rate, kill lift jets at 120m/s / 250 knots then climb to supercruise altitude at 400 knots at a rate of 25 meters per second.
In the orbital launch configuration, minimal forward sweep is used for takeoff and climb to 10,000m in under 10 minutes. The craft accelerates to level supercruise at a ground speed of 370m/s or 700 knots where you can sweep the wings forward to counter the rearwards shift of center of lift after transitioning the sound barrier.
The full forward wing position is reserved for high supersonic flight. Turn off the jet engines before accelerating past Mach 1.8. Do not be in a hurry to change wing sweep as, unlike the movies, drastically altering the center of aerodynamic pressure can cause catastrophic loss of control within seconds! You may, like the real world SR-71, accelerate to high supersonic speed in a gradual dive before soaring off to the heavens on rocket power. Optimal ascent angle for orbital flight is around 30-35 degrees nose up (see video) and use OMS thrusters as needed to climb above the thicker lower atmosphere.
After completing your flight, transition back to jet flight and use the lift jets for vertical landing. If you have expended all rocket fuel and oxidizer, you will be flying with the wings swept back (outer wings flush with the wingroot joints).
- B9 Aerospace
- Squad (stock)
- Type: SPH
- Class: spaceplane
- Part Count: 225
- Mods: 7
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