Archive for November, 2008

500 Designs!!!!!

November 17, 2008

The target has been reached! 

In the waning minutes of November 16, and into the early minutes of November 17, our core team member Jay Goemmer provided us with the needed designs to reach our target of 500. His submission, a five-part series called the 5280 (Correction: 5820), represents variations on a theme of tube-fin/ring-fin designs based on some RockSim experiments by Bruce S. Levinson. Thank you, Jay and Bruce, for working out a more accurate model for ring-fin simulations.

Little by little…

November 11, 2008

Only 7 more designs are needed to fill out the target of 500. With James Pierson’s “12 Days” series still to come, we will have at least 505 designs in the catalog for the close of 2008. That’s a fantastic milestone.

A pending project that I am still trying to get a handle on is a set of links for every design, which will point to the RKT or PDF file for that design. What I will probably do is work the number down in batches, possibly 20 a day, until they have all been done. Keep in mind that most of the designs can be downloaded already, just not from one single source. You will find some of the earliest plans on the home website, but by far the majority can be located on Ye Olde Rocket Forum, in one of our “Scrounged” threads, and in the “Designers’ Studio” thread. It has been standard operating procedure to release all new designs on the forum so that forum members can evaluate them and critique them, if they so choose.

Looking Forward to 2009

November 8, 2008

We will clearly pass the 500-design mark before the end of December, as we are only 8 short of that number right now. Thanks and congrats to all of our contributors! 

Apogee has published the latest Newsletter, #221, with a full article about the coming release of RockSim 9. All we can say is WOW! The one new feature that is grabbing our immediate attention is the introduction of PODS, a variation of the SUBASSEMBLY idea, which allows nose cones and transitions to finally be added to “outside tubes”. Just as importantly, fins can now be added in locations that do not reference the rocket’s primary centerline. In a nutshell, T-tails are now possible, as are fins on pop-off boosters.

This release gives the user the ability to create the Gyroc for the first time in software, and have it actually look like the Gyroc instead of some wierd pseudo-clone that only gives the same performance in simulation. One can model the Trident, with proper cones at the tips of the three gas passage tubes. On the cover of the newsletter is a 3D rendering of the Orbital Transport, with motor shrouds under the booster’s wings, and the orbiter has its wings on the bottom of the tube where they belong. The Mars Snooper is now possible in software.

For BARCLONE, it means we can finally render up some of our long-ago ideas, like the Spectre and the Empyria, which have long engine nacelles along the main body tube. These can now be modeled correctly, and not as shaped blobs of balsa. This release also opens up the way for some truly bizzare and unusual ideas that came to us in our nightmares, but which RockSim 8 simply would not let us do. We intend to push the boundaries of this program in 2009 and see where the breaking point might be.

The projections show…

November 5, 2008

…That we now have enough designs posted, along with the 12 models to be delivered by our core team member James Pierson in December, to cross the line of 500 original designs with at least one to spare. We now have 489 unique designs in the catalog. The arrival of the “12” will put us at 501.

A discussion on Ye Olde Rocket Shoppe about whether upscales are considered “new designs” was resolved through the simulation runs on RockSim. The upscales are, indeed, different animals and merit their own recognition as an individual design. They don’t always fly the same as the original version, sometimes requiring modification to fly correctly.

We thank all of our contributors for their assistance in reaching this milestone, and look forward to the next 500 designs. With the pending arrival of RockSim 9, perhaps some additional elements can be attempted that are currently not possible.