Top products from r/KerbalSpaceProgram

We found 69 product mentions on r/KerbalSpaceProgram. We ranked the 144 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top comments that mention products on r/KerbalSpaceProgram:

u/ravensfreak0624 · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I assume you mean just learning about rockets, not literally building your own. Building your own is a hundreds of thousands of dollars endeavor (at the cheapest) and requires regulatory approval from your nation's government - it's no easy task.

I've found that /r/SpaceX is a good place to learn the ins and outs of orbital rockets, though as you might expect it's pretty heavily SpaceX focused, so you'll learn a lot more about Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy than other launch vehicles. The sub's wiki and FAQ sections give a very good overview of SpaceX and rocketry in general, and you should consider giving those a read.

Beyond that, the best thing you can do is seek out opportunities to learn. Do you have a favorite science, engineering, or mathematics professor at school? Talk to them about your interest in spaceflight and what opportunities there are to learn more. There are some great books out there about spaceflight as well, from historical narratives like "The Right Stuff" by Tom Wolfe, which talks about the history of spaceflight. John Anderson's Introduction to Flight was a textbook I used in one of my introductory aerospace classes, it's a bit pricey (though you can save money on an old edition) and obviously reads like a textbook, but give a good technical overview on both air and space systems.

After you've done all that, if you really want to get into the details of orbital mechanics and spacecraft design, you're going to need a college education. Are you in the United States or interested in studying here? I'd be happy to recommend some schools to keep an eye on if you're considering making a career out of this.

Edit: formatting

u/EagleEyeInTheSky · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

If you want to get super serious about this game and really know what you're doing, then I'd suggest getting this book and reading up on actual rocket science. Taking a class on astronautics in college was when I personally really started to understand the concepts required by KSP. However, in the interest of saving forty bucks, there's a lot out there on the internet that can teach you this stuff just as easily. Scott Manley's videos are pretty good. I'm also sure that there's some written tutorials out there.

By far the most important concept is that of deltav, which is actually formally written as Δv. Mathematically, this literally translates to change in velocity. When Kerbal Engineering Redux tells you how much Δv one of your stages contains, it's telling you that if there were no gravity, and your ship was floating in a pure vacuum motionless, and you pointed in one direction, and fired your rockets and emptied that entire stage's worth of fuel, that Δv number is how fast your rocket would be going at the end of the burn. Δv is a measure of how much "effort" your stage can put out and how much of a change in velocity it can impart on your rocket as a whole.

Δv is one of the most important concepts in navigating space, because in order to change from one orbit to another, there is a very specific, easily calculable change in velocity that must take place. You probably know that in order to orbit at a certain height above Kerbin, there is a very specific speed that your ship must have in order to maintain a perfectly circular orbit(this is assuming your orbit is perfectly spherical and not elliptical like most orbits are). Similarly, there is a very specific velocity that your ship must have when it leaves that orbit to head to the Mun in order to get that smooth elliptical transfer to the Mun. Therefore the difference in velocity between the circular orbit and the transfer orbit is the Δv that must be imparted onto the vehicle in order to transfer to the Mun. This is approximated for you on those Δv maps like this one.

So, by using Δv maps and maneuver nodes, you can figure out how much Δv you need to make your maneuvers, but now you need to figure out how much fuel you need to perform those maneuvers. That all depends on how much fuel is burned, how efficiently it is burned, how much structural weight is present in the rocket, and the weight ratio between fuel and structure. Another point to consider is that rocket acceleration is not constant, for as the rocket burns fuel, it will constantly get lighter and experience stronger and stronger acceleration, assuming that it is experiencing constant throttling. This has all been simplified by the Tsiolkovsky rocket equation. For all non-air breathing engines, Δv = (g0)(Isp)ln(Mi/Mf), where g0 is the gravitational acceleration at the surface of Kerbin(this is constant everywhere in the game, it's simply a unit conversion constant), Isp is the efficiency of the fuel and the engine burning it, Mi is the initial total mass of the vehicle before the burn, and Mf is the mass of the vehicle after the burn. You can calculate this yourself but since Kerbal Engineering Redux does this for you, why bother? However, it is important to understand the main criteria for adjusting Δv in your designs. g0 and Isp are mainly fixed values. The main variable to adjust in your designs is the mass ratio Mi/Mf. The less dead weight on your vehicle(this includes upper stages that haven't burned yet), and the more fuel burned, the more Δv you'll achieve in your designs. This is also why staging is so important. By staging and dropping your dead weight, you're decreasing structural mass hindering your upper stages and gaining more Δv. If you want to get more serious about your designs, you can add up the masses of the parts you want on your ship in a spreadsheet and calculate optimal staging sizes for your ship using the limited parts in the KSP inventory.

Other considerations are TWR, or Thrust to Weight ratio, which is simply the thrust of that stage matched to the weight of the whole ship. Changing the reference body in Kerbal Engineering simply adjusts the weight for each body. A lander on Minmus doesn't have to be super powerful, and might have a really small TWR on Kerbin, but that doesn't matter because all it needs to take off from Minmus is a TWR greater than 1 on Minmus, whose gravity is way weaker than Kerbin's.

I'll also throw out another tip that I hardly ever see mentioned here. Before you launch, check your center of mass and center of lift. In a rocket, your center of lift should always be below the center of mass. If it isn't, then you need to add stabilizing fins at the bottom of your rocket. A rocket with the center of lift above the center of mass is very likely to flip over backwards during its launch. Also, if you're attaching control surfaces, they're more effective the farther away they are from the center of mass, so it's always important to know where your center of mass is.

u/arksien · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Quite literally, it means change of velocity. When people talk about "needing enough dV to get somewhere," what they mean is that, they need enough fuel to get there. I'm going to use arbitrary numbers right now because I'm too lazy to look up the actual ones, and simple is better anyhow.

Lets say you have a craft in low kerbin orbit. You want to go to the Mun. You're currently traveling 2300 m/s. In order to intercept the Mun, you need to be going 2900 m/s. Once in the Mun's sphere of influence you're traveling at 800 m/s, and you need to burn retrograde until you're traveling at 200 m/s to achieve orbit. The opposite is true to achieve escape velocity, and then once you escape, you're traveling 3000 m/s and need to reduce your speed to 2700 m/s for your periapsis to allow re-entry to kerbin.

(Again, these numbers are ball park, not exact).

So, the dV you need to get to the Mun's SoI is 600 m/s (from 2300 to 2900). A capture burn is 600 m/s, and an escape burn is 600 m/s. A final burn for entry is 300 m/s of dV. So, the total dV your ship needs in this scenario to go for the whole trip is 2100 m/s of dV.

Now, this does get a little more complicated when in an atmosphere, because you'll burn more fuel trying to escape than you would in a vacuum. Also, the effect of gravity on your craft is going to change the efficiency of your rocket depending on how much vertical and horizontal velocity you have at various points of your burn. When people say they're building a ship with ideal dV, what they typically mean is "I did the math and found that if I manage to fly the most optimal flight path available to use my fuel the most efficiently, I need enough fuel to perform dV burns at various points in the trip totally this number." The math behind all these variables gets a lot more complicated, and if you really want to nerd out, "Fundamentals of Astrodynamics" will help you to understand what the hell is going on just a bit better. I like that book because it has the math, a brief explanation, and diagrams all in one package. You'll learn all about various transfer types too!

...or you can just download mods that do the work for you, like many people! Or, you can just wing it and hope for the best like even more people! I mean, worst case scenario it's time for a rescue mission, right?

u/derfherdez · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Let me add, that I bought this game back in 2012... Looking at my email receipt:

>Aug 6, 2012 19:29:07 EDT | Transaction ID: 0XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

>Hello Derfherdez,

>You sent a payment of $18.00 USD to Electro Chango S.A. de C.V.

So, yes it was worth $18 USD back then, and it sure is worth that today. At the same time I've gifted about 5 copies of this to friends/family over the years so I've spent way more on KSP, and it's totally worth it.

If you have ever seen the right stuff, Apollo 13, or even been inspired with the idea of the next frontier... This is an incredible buy. It's realistic enough that it's nothing retarded like pressing 'F' to pay respect, but enough that people here have even bought books like Fundamentals of Astrodynamics to get a better idea on how things 'work'.

The game will challenge you in ways that nor mindless button masher ever will. And maybe, just maybe inspire people to take us to that next great leap for mankind.

10/10 I'd buy this game over and over.

Get the demo, build a rocket, try to get it to do something, then get the game before the sale runs out!

u/Kenira · 7 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Depends on if you want a simple joystick, brent1123 mentioned one.

Or if you want a HOTAS System, meaning a joystick plus a throttle control. That's going to cost a bit more, but it certainly feels nice. I only have experience with the Saitek X52 which is great, then there's a cheaper one with the Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas X people seem to like.

u/mryall · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

It's all calculable, but quicks starts needing a lot of math once you include orbit changes and air resistance.

An easy start is to determine your desired orbit's dV requirements, then plug your engine's Isp into the rocket equation to determine its propellant-mass fraction. Then you can use the weight of the engine plus fuel tanks and payload to estimate the fuel required to reach orbit in an ideal rocket.

There are quite a few online calculators like this one, that give you a sense of what order to calculate things and the terms to look for in equations.

If you're really interested in deeply understanding the maths behind launches and orbital mechanics, I can recommend this book which is a commonly used aerospace engineering text: Fundamentals of Astrodynamics.

u/Koooooj · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I'm a fan of my old copy of Fundamentals of Astrodynamics, by Bate, Mueller, and White. It was, by far, the cheapest textbook I purchased for my Aerospace degree (~$7; Amazon has it for <$3 used) but it is one of the primary texts in the field--most other texts wind up referencing this 1970s book. I seldom reference it anymore, though. FoA primarily focuses on how to calculate the motion of a spacecraft. It covers the Patched conics approach, various basic maneuvers, and interplanetary trajectories. It also covers how to figure out the orbit of an object based on ground measurements as well as perturbations--how things like uneven gravity, solar wind, and magnetism can affect an orbiting craft.

I also have read some of the AIAA edition of Space Vehicle Design, but it is considerably more expensive. It goes over more advanced concerns for the design and operation of practical, real-world space craft. If you have the coin and are interested in such things then you could pick it up. I've found the AIAA editions of Aerospace books to be well written in general. That book is only really worth it, though, if you have enough money that you won't miss the $70+ to buy or if you need it for your degree.

I've also had some luck with MIT Open Courseware, but I don't see much on aerospace that would be terribly relevant to KSP.

u/UmbralRaptor · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Okay, the ELI11 made it sound like the simplest approach would be best. The rocket equation link still applies.

As for canned aspects of orbital mechanics, Kepler's 3rd law and the Vis-Viva equation still apply.

More generally, I like braeunig for a website and Fundamentals of Astrodynamics for a textbook. It's probably best to look into exponential functions and Algebra (with an eye towards Calculus) as soon as possible, though.

u/HostisHumaniGeneris · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Because this was an impulse buy I didn't have the patience to order online and wait, so I drove to my nearest Best Buy (haven't been there in a while) and picked up a Logitech 3D Pro.

The joystick can be twisted to allow for rotation as well as pitch and yaw, but I'm still tweaking the sensitivity since its very easy to start spinning out of control.

The hat toggle on the top and the throttle on the bottom are my favorite features. The hat toggle is connected to my lateral thrusters so I can use my thumb to nudge my ships up down left and right while using the main stick to tweak my angle. It made docking a real breeze when I tested it last night. The throttle, as I mentioned, makes burns very accurate as you can go from max thrust to minimum or anywhere in between with a flick of the lever.

u/slyfoxninja · 5 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Oh I know, but it's remembering what direction when you're in a different orientation. When I dock or using landing a can I like to use my Thrustmaster T-Flight Hotas X Flight Stick; I picked it up when someone on this sub recommended it as a cheaper setup and works really well with KSP. I'm glad I took the recommendation because flying and landing planes is sooooo much easier now.

u/pierresderriere · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

You will have to program the axes in the KSP start menu but it's pretty self explanatory.

This is the one I bought:

But I'm there are others out there that might be better so don't take it as a strong recommendation from me because it's the only one I've ever used. I haven't had any issues with it though.

u/TheJeizon · 5 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

These were the 3 I picked up.

This one seems to be the most popular, probably because of it's publication timeframe, 1971. Not too early, not too late.

This is an earlier textbook and is considered a classic at this point. Still useful.

While less popular (and more expensive), I found this one to be my favorite. Hard to say why, some combination of layout, examples, and teaching style. The fact that it was also published in my lifetime, unlike the other 2, might have something to do with it as well in terms of language, etc.

But take /u/The_Mother_of_Robots advice and don't do it. This is a slippery slope thick atmosphere in a deep gravity well. There is no Lagrange point, just the abyss.

u/Dandruff_loves_you · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

oh it's worth it. i bought a logitec 3d pro over fathers day and it is the only thing i use to fly now. there is something very satisfying about pulling a trigger to activate your next stage. not to mention, i have essentially everything i need rebound to the joystick, so i am barely touching the keyboard at all when i play (except for RCS)

the absolute best thing is a physical throttle. you cannot get the same precision out of the ctrl and shift buttons.

u/pastadiablo · 5 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I haven't gotten it yet (it arrives later this week), but I'm planning on using the Thrustmaster T-Flight HOTAS, as I wanted a "hand on throttle and stick" joystick in the same price range as you mentioned. =D

u/masteriskofficial · 8 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

This book was my textbook for my Spacecraft Dynamics course and honestly is awesome. It's not light reading, but if you just want to understand it, this is the book to read. There should be .PDFs online for free

u/Rulare · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I got a T-Flight HOTAS from Thrustmaster the other year for under 30 dollars;

However it's over $40 now so I'm not sure if it's the most economical choice anymore. It was an amazing value at the price I got it at though.

It might still be the cheapest one to offer a great big stonking throttle on a separate/detachable base though

u/RoboRay · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

There's a lot of great books on the subject. One in particular I would recommend is Gene Kranz's book "Failure is Not an Option." It's from the perspective of his seat in Mission Control, and touches on almost every aspect of early spaceflight. If you're not familiar with him, he's the white-vested Flight Control Director in the Tom Hanks Apollo 13 movie, and the inspiration for KSP's Gene Kerman in the Mission Contol building.

If you're looking for something to watch, I can't more highly recommend anything than the HBO miniseries "From the Earth to the Moon."

u/Casually_Awesome · 34 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Yup, kinematics, basic orbital dynamics, and simple rocket equations are just algebra! Anybody interested should really check out one of the best Astro books out there:

u/jardeon · 6 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

> He’s right: altimeters measure height above sea level, but mountains and flatlands at high elevation can be hundreds or thousands of meters above that.

Gene Kranz addresses this in his truly awesome autobiography. He talks about how the parachutes on the capsule would open automatically at a certain altitude, but if your re-entry was off course and over a mountain, you could slam into the mountain before the parachutes had a chance to deploy.

u/payo_ayo · 15 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

It looks like they actually got that off of my RedBubble store—it's a version of the OG that's available there

Edit: Nvm. Someone is selling it on Amazon apparently sooo. Not sure what to make of that

BUT! Anyone's free to use it as they see fit... I had the full size SVG file available for everyone to use, but the link to the DropBox doesn't work any more and I need to re-upload it

I should do that.

Thank you for thinking of me though!

u/Sultan_of_Slide · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

So how about something like this? I just so happen to have $30 left on an amazon gift card.

u/hasslehawk · 6 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Absolutely, it adds a great degree of control and immersion.

I'd recommend a cheap joystick to anyone interested in flying in other games, too. I couldn't imagine flying without one anymore in Arma. And certainly there are people out there who swear by joysticks in KSP, and I don't mean to contradict them. My opinion is nothing more than an anecdote.

I think you'll find yourself making excuses to use it in other games though, once you have it!

The Logitech Extreme 3d Pro is the king of the entry-level joystick market, by the way. And with good reason. That Mad Catz v.1 up there got me in the air, but is a bit clunky.


Edit: This comment was edited to remove some information about control surfaces behaving funky that I was either remembering incorrectly or doesn't apply anymore.

u/aladdinator · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Aww Yisss, that book is fantastic. It was recommended to me by coworkers when I was interning in a space company. (Proof)

Just pulled it out and another book that was recommended to me called Structures: Or Why Things Don't Fall Down

u/spookyjohnathan · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Do you use a joystick?

I bought a refurbished Logitech 3D Pro for $11 when I first really started getting into KSP. Note the throttle switch on the far right in that pic (it faces towards you when you use it,) which is perfect for minute adjustments to your burn. I nearly wept the first time I nudged it up and down and saw the in-game throttle indicator sliding back and forth as I did.

If I hadn't slowly made the transition to in-game control panels (like mechjeb and Lazor,) or if there were any other promising flight/space sims coming through the pipes in the near future, I'd consider investing in something like this for the off-board throttle alone.

u/mdr270 · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I love SMAD for spacecraft design! My go-to for orbits stuff (my professional specialty) is "orbital mechanics for engineering students" ($ and the next one is "fundamentals of astrodynamics and applications" (

u/Cranyx · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

This is a great introductory source.

If you want to get more in depth, then you might want to start looking at books about lagrangian mechanics or Engineering textbooks.

u/delazeur6 · 0 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

If you want physical books (personally, I much prefer them to electronic copies despite being a millennial), check out Dover books on Amazon. They publish old textbooks for $10-$20, so you can pick up a bunch for a lot less than you would usually spend on a single textbook. Fundamentals of Astrodynamics, for example, is an old U.S. Air Force Academy textbook that will teach you a lot of basic rocket science and orbital mechanics.

Some less mathy but still very interesting and semi-technical options are How Apollo Flew to the Moon and To Orbit and Back Again.

u/SarcasmRules · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I have one of these.

I am going to mess with this over the weekend. I could see this as fun for docking and plane flights, potentially landing.

Orbits and burns I typically just use mech jeb but I enjoy the more challenging things.

Edit: When using the joystick for RCS docking is it going to be a huge pain to have the controls configured to the RCS adjustments instead of normal flight adjustments.

u/PageFault · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

You can always shorten Amazon links with /dp/BO7???????

Like this:

u/ArcOfSpades · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Not sure what your mathematical background is, but Fundamentals of Astrodynamics is a highly popular introductory textbook for $18.

u/lachryma · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

His book is excellent and is full of them. I read it on a cross-country plane ride. It's riveting enough, particularly during Apollo 13, that you'll breeze through it fairly quickly.

u/GeneUnit90 · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Get one of these and it'll be much easier.

u/SpartanBeryl · 5 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

It’s called the Von Braun Ferry Rocket.

If you don’t know much about Wernher von Braun, I highly recommend you read this book. A model of his rocket is featured on the cover of the book.

u/drhorriblephd · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

The Right Stuff

From the Earth to the Moon

When We Left Earth

Also, the Youtube videos with Commander Chris Hadfield got me interested in space stations again which is what I've been doing lately on KSP.

u/NotaClipaMagazine · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Oh, well now I feel silly. I thought you were quoting The Martian but I guess they were quoting Apollo 13 too.

u/atomfullerene · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

This one is from The Smoke Ring

>East takes you out, out takes you west, west takes you in, in takes you east, port and starboard bring you back

And that's the basics of manuvering in orbit all summed up in one tidy sentence.

u/readytofall · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

The math for the parched comics stuff actually is not that hard. It's just know what you are looking for and plug it in. Basic algebra. Once you stray from that and do the cordinate transformations and into the the non patched conics stuff it gets a lot harder.

u/ArsenioDev · 1 pointr/KerbalSpaceProgram

I've got that exact book and this sitting on my nightstand. More books are on my desk too

u/jrandom · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Link to Hardcover 2nd Edition (this is the version I bought)

It's weird to read a technical text that is gripping. I read it cover to cover, despite not getting the math.

u/Tinkco86 · 2 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

So, I graduated college with a degree in IT and took some calculus and geometry while I was there. I miss learning this kind of thing, and was wondering if there is a way to learn orbital mechanics as a hobby. If I pick up Fundamentals of Astrodynamics, would I be too in over my head?

u/Ralath0n · 3 pointsr/KerbalSpaceProgram

Lately I've been listening to the audiobook of "The Martian". It works great while flying, not so great while designing. It's difficult to make something spaceworthy in RSS while simultaneously concentrating on a book.

When designing in the VAB I prefer to have some game or series soundtrack running. Favorites include but are not limited to Xenosaga, Nagi no Asukara and Kara no Kyoukai.