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Thread: Docking Ports

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tahvohck View Post
    For anything designed to hold more than roughly... let's say four subships, I'd imagine practicality would require a design like this:
    • "Landed" ships are docked into a large depressurized bay and clamped down
    • Loading and unloading is done in this bay, with either pressurized "detachable airlocks" or extending umbilicals used to transfer anything vacuum-sensitive.
    • Most repairs are handled in vacuum in this bay, basically a internal spacewalk.
    • For repairs that require an atmosphere, there's one or more small repair bays that can be pressurized and accessed independently of the large bay.
    • Each landing pad would also have a service umbilical for passenger/pilot transfer, either of service (obviously) or passenger size.

    Potentially the repair bays could also be used for loading/unloading, but that would probably be based on either per-ship design or special cases. Setting the bays up like this would keep cycle times down and prevent one ship from blocking activities on another (mostly), and ships would still be relatively quick to access and deploy. Cargo loading will still take time, but probably not much longer than the actual time to move the objects around.
    This.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tahvohck View Post
    For anything designed to hold more than roughly... let's say four subships, I'd imagine practicality would require a design like this:
    • "Landed" ships are docked into a large depressurized bay and clamped down
    • Loading and unloading is done in this bay, with either pressurized "detachable airlocks" or extending umbilicals used to transfer anything vacuum-sensitive.
    • Most repairs are handled in vacuum in this bay, basically a internal spacewalk.
    • For repairs that require an atmosphere, there's one or more small repair bays that can be pressurized and accessed independently of the large bay.
    • Each landing pad would also have a service umbilical for passenger/pilot transfer, either of service (obviously) or passenger size.

    Potentially the repair bays could also be used for loading/unloading, but that would probably be based on either per-ship design or special cases. Setting the bays up like this would keep cycle times down and prevent one ship from blocking activities on another (mostly), and ships would still be relatively quick to access and deploy. Cargo loading will still take time, but probably not much longer than the actual time to move the objects around.
    This idea sounds good indeed. I also imagine this to work a bit like an aircraft carrier: You have flight-ready ships in the unpressurized hangar, and several more in a pressurized subdeck, with some service elevators (with included airlock) to move between them. So your fighter pilots (whom I suspect would be wearing spacesuits anyways) simply spill out into the unpressurized hangar to their ships and startup.

    In addition, particularly talking about military applications, you could also have a rapid response squad docked on the outside, or in a special bay that would in itself be an unpressurized but armored compartment - I am thinking like the Fighter Bays in Babylon 5. While I like the Battlestar Galactica approach with Launch tubes as far as excitement, I do consider the Bab5 version slightly more, well, realistic. After all, with realistic physics you don't necessarily want to launch your fighter at a start speed, considering they'll just have to cancel all the momentum a second later...

  3. #13
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    I guess I should probably update this thread so everyone doesn't think I made a dongle and left. Here are some WIP images of the new and better design.

    Work would be 100x faster but college and life in general hasn't left me much time.

    Here are two very quick renders to give anyone interested an idea about the basic shape and all that. I hope I get some time to work on her, I really like where I'm going at the moment.

    http://i.imgur.com/zlYSJ3D.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/bBizWKN.jpg

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rookie Ray View Post
    I guess I should probably update this thread so everyone doesn't think I made a dongle and left. Here are some WIP images of the new and better design.

    Work would be 100x faster but college and life in general hasn't left me much time.

    Here are two very quick renders to give anyone interested an idea about the basic shape and all that. I hope I get some time to work on her, I really like where I'm going at the moment.

    http://i.imgur.com/zlYSJ3D.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/bBizWKN.jpg
    WOW, well, I really like it too! Awesome job there!

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Juliano View Post
    There will be three universal sizes of docking collars: utility (about 1 meter in radius), passenger-type (these would be used for larger ships to allow many people at once to flow through), and cargo (obviously very large collars to allow cargo to be transferred).

    I will provide some geo templates for these so modders can design to the basic connections. I'm working on the "final" utility design now with the Flying Fox model I'm working on.

    Yes, about a certain size (maybe 40 height/width) and external dockings, or landings on external pads, would be required...

    Edit: Nice work so far...
    What sort of time frame are we looking at for those geo templates? Flying Fox should be done by the end of December right? Would that be when the geo templates show up? Thanks in advance
    http://i.imgur.com/ADAZ6RT.png
    http://i.imgur.com/yqvAj5U.png

  6. #16
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    Looking really nice!

    Have a bit more work to do on them first. I don't THINK I'll have time for this update, but I can schedule in time to finish them up for the next...
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  7. #17
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    Thanks Michael!

    Cannot wait for the Flying Fox! Looks like we both have lots of work to do

    While I'm at it, I remember reading a while ago that a texture atlas is a must, how big are yours generally? For both exterior and interior? I don't want to go too crazy with mine.

    **EDIT**

    Oh and MDL and .TEX converters will come with that too I assume?

  8. #18
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    I generally use 2048x2048's for most things. Obviously, if you can get away with less you should. You goal though is to keep the material count as low as possible for efficiency.
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Juliano View Post
    I generally use 2048x2048's for most things. Obviously, if you can get away with less you should. You goal though is to keep the material count as low as possible for efficiency.
    Now that update 4.9 is here, when can we expect geometry templates for docking ports and RCS (if RCS is standardised)?
    I'm loving the fox's cockpit, the overhead switches are interesting. I tried the design myself but couldn't find good placement for switches without blocking view but I think it works well with the flying fox's cramped viewport monitors.

  10. #20
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    RCS is NOT standardized--they can be anywhere, size you'd like. They're defined within the ship's data file.

    Templates for ports--yeah, I was so busy with everything else they simply slipped my mind. Let me see what I can do in the next few days. Still really busy, but I think I can get something to you all...
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