Munar mission – White Rock 1

by hobbitalastair

I managed to complete a Mun mission, on the second try, about a week ago.

I flew my White Rock 1 unmanned rocket to the Mun.

Ignition in 5... 4...

My Mun capable rocket, ready to launch

The first step in any mission is getting the rocket into orbit. With White Rock 1, this is fairly simple; although the rocket uses asparagus staging, only 1 stage is fully used up during the Kerbin ascent.

The world is very blue...

My Mun capable rocket in orbit with 2 stages left.

After orbiting, I lined up a manuever node, trying to optimise for the most efficient Mun capture. My ‘average’ Mun captures so far have been around 800m/s – which I am quite happy with as I budgeted 860m/s, according to my trusty dV chart. However, that does not include the Mun orbit maneuver, which tends to cost around 300m/s to stabilise an orbit around the Mun.

Now, how to land...

White Rock 1 in Munar orbit

Landing was slightly more complex. On my last mission, I had stuffed up the landing by not burning soon enough – cue large explosions:

Pretty explosion

Early Mun mission gone wrong…

This time, I intended to do it ‘properly’. I got out my pen and paper, and plugged in the (approximated) numbers – 300m/s start speed, 50kn engine, Munar gravity of around 1.6m/s^2, and did my best to land. I burnt too early still – worrying, since I needed that fuel to get home. Next time, I will be more precise… hopefully not too precise 😉

Note the LV-909...

My first Mun landing!

Success! The Kerbals back home could rejoice – oh, wait a minute, it was only a probe. Boring….

After collecting my hard earned science, I headed back home. Mun take off is a breeze, and so is Kerbin intercept. There was a tense moment – I was not sure I had enough fuel to get home. I could have done a quick calculation, but it was too late anyway….

Luckily I had enough for a direct Kerbin entry.

Home sweet home...

Landing in the desert, just after sunset.

With my hard earned science, I then went out and researched some rover wheels – but that is a subject for another post.