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A L D A R O N
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I'm confused about how to calculate the mass of a spacecraft.

Most of the rules seem to consistently say that the spacecraft includes all components not yet used, so that, for example, the mass of the rocket being fired is part of the mass used in computing the maneuver.

But the mission planning example seems to say otherwise: it seems to exclude the rockets being used in a maneuver from the mass calculation for that maneuver.

Which is it?

 
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Reverend Uncle Bastard
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Aldaron wrote:
I'm confused about how to calculate the mass of a spacecraft.

Most of the rules seem to consistently say that the spacecraft includes all components not yet used, so that, for example, the mass of the rocket being fired is part of the mass used in computing the maneuver.

But the mission planning example seems to say otherwise: it seems to exclude the rockets being used in a maneuver from the mass calculation for that maneuver.

Which is it?



The mass of a rocket being used for a maneuver always counts towards the current mass of the overall ship.
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Cool.

And what happens if I need to use more than one component for a maneuver? Is the maneuver "monolithic", i.e. I don't incrementally subtract masses of used rockets as I use them within a maneuver, only after a maneuver is completed?
 
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Reverend Uncle Bastard
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Aldaron wrote:
Cool.

And what happens if I need to use more than one component for a maneuver? Is the maneuver "monolithic", i.e. I don't incrementally subtract masses of used rockets as I use them within a maneuver, only after a maneuver is completed?


Correct!
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Israel Waldrom
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Aldaron wrote:
I'm confused about how to calculate the mass of a spacecraft.

Most of the rules seem to consistently say that the spacecraft includes all components not yet used, so that, for example, the mass of the rocket being fired is part of the mass used in computing the maneuver.

But the mission planning example seems to say otherwise: it seems to exclude the rockets being used in a maneuver from the mass calculation for that maneuver.

Which is it?



The mission planning example uses Payload if i recall correctly, and references to the payload chart on the agency boards. The payload chart removes some of the maths and makes planning simpler, but the underlying rules are still the same.
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Josh Zscheile
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As a (hopefully) quick wrap up:

- The Rocket and Thruster cards give the real thrust the component provides. In a maneuver, you have to take into account all the mass the spacecraft has before the maneuver, i.e. all the rocket's mass you intend to use as well.

- The payload table on your faction board does not include the mass of the rocket or thruster used, just the mass of he stuff you want moved. You can use it for multi-rocket maneuvers nevertheless, just exclude all the rockets you are about to use from the payload number and account for Ion Thrusters carrying themselves (so, every Ion Thruster fired should also be excluded from calculating the payload).

Let's do a quick example: (correct me if I am wrong with the numbers, I do not have the game here)

You have a space craft consisting of an Atlas rocket (4 mass, 27 thrust), an Ion Thruster (1 mass, 5 thrust per year) and 10 supply (10 mass). You have a maneuver with difficulty 2 with optional use of time tokens.

Version 1: numbers on the component cards:

In summary, you want to move 15 mass over a difficulty of 2 and have to generate 30 thrust. The Atlas rocket alone provides only 27 thrust, so that is not enough. So you additionally make the maneuver take one year. The mass stays the same (15) and so does the need of thrust (30), but additionally to the 27 provided thrust from the Atlas, your Ion thruster generates 5 for a total of 32, which is enough to make the maneuver.

Alternatively, you could make the maneuver take 6 years and only use the Ion Thruster,sparing the Atlas for later use (30 thrust needed/(5 thrust provided/year) = 6 years)

Version 2: numbers on the payload table:

You have 10 payload and want to maneuver it over 2 difficulty. That means you have to use rockets and thrusters to provide for these 10 payload. The Atlas rocket can move 9.5 payload over 2 difficulty, which is not enough (especially since you would have to count the Ion Thruster as additional 1 payload if you don't want to use it). The Ion Thruster can carry a payload of 1.5 over 1 year at difficulty of 2, so the numbers of payload that can be carried over 1 year add up to 11, which is enough.

Alternatively, the chart tells you that one Ion Thruster can move 14 payload over 6 years with difficulty 2, which accounts for all its payload (since the Atlas is not used and therefore payload).

Hope that helps
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Bruce Schlickbernd
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reverendunclebastard wrote:
Aldaron wrote:
I'm confused about how to calculate the mass of a spacecraft.

Most of the rules seem to consistently say that the spacecraft includes all components not yet used, so that, for example, the mass of the rocket being fired is part of the mass used in computing the maneuver.

But the mission planning example seems to say otherwise: it seems to exclude the rockets being used in a maneuver from the mass calculation for that maneuver.

Which is it?



The mass of a rocket being used for a maneuver always counts towards the current mass of the overall ship.


So, a basic capsule (mass 2) plus an Atlas (mass 4) can get to sub-orbital (18 thrust required - Atlas has 27). It cannot get to orbit because orbital burn from sub-orbital is 30 for a (2+4)*5 configuration even if you could lift an atlas plus capsule with an atlas to sub-orbital (which you can't). You can't get to a basic orbital flight until you have Soyuz? Is that correct?
 
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Roger BW
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Corsair wrote:
You can't get to a basic orbital flight until you have Soyuz? Is that correct?
No - a pair of Atlases can put a single mass of payload into orbit, and you can gang them together.

So:

Vostok @ 2 + 4 Atlas @ 4 = 18
Burn 2 Atlas for 54 thrust, 18×3≤54, get to sub-orbital flight, 10 mass remains
Burn 2 Atlas for 54 thrust, 10×5≤54, get to Earth Orbit, 2 mass remains
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Bruce Schlickbernd
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Firedrake wrote:
Corsair wrote:
You can't get to a basic orbital flight until you have Soyuz? Is that correct?
No - a pair of Atlases can put a single mass of payload into orbit, and you can gang them together.

So:

Vostok @ 2 + 4 Atlas @ 4 = 18
Burn 2 Atlas for 54 thrust, 18×3≤54, get to sub-orbital flight, 10 mass remains
Burn 2 Atlas for 54 thrust, 10×5≤54, get to Earth Orbit, 2 mass remains


You can fire multiple rockets simultaneously? So, effectively, two Atlases are strapped together (presumably buried in the rules somewhere that I missed).
 
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Joe Fatula
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Corsair wrote:
You can fire multiple rockets simultaneously?


Indeed you can. Take a look at the examples in the first chapter "Basics of Rocketry". There you'll see how to work with multiple rockets in a single stage.
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Bruce Schlickbernd
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Thanks! Dunno why they didn't include that information in the maneuvering section (and not sure why it takes two Atlas rockets to accomplish what one did in real life, but I'll write that off to game function to indicate rocket engine 2 rather than specifically an Atlas rocket).
 
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Joe Fatula
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Corsair wrote:
Thanks! Dunno why they didn't include that information in the maneuvering section (and not sure why it takes two Atlas rockets to accomplish what one did in real life, but I'll write that off to game function to indicate rocket engine 2 rather than specifically an Atlas rocket).

"They" would be me in this case, so I know where the blame lies for that...

The rockets in the game are a little bit abstract. Think of them as individual stages or boosters, and they'll make more sense. The names are just there to recognize a few historically significant rockets.
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