Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

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P3D SpacePort Team
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Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

Introducing P3D SpacePort: A fully-featured spaceflight simulator for P3D V4 and 5:
  • Realistic and precise ballistic and rocketry flight model
  • Fully featured, custom collision and dynamics physics engine
  • Stacking, staging, docking
  • Detailed spaceflight dynamics
  • Launch and assemble structures in orbit
  • Perform EVAs in orbit
  • Fully featured instrumentation and capsule cockpit environment
  • Realistic sizes, speeds and dynamics
  • Realistic pyrotechnic and atmospheric effects
  • Re-entry and parachute ballistic systems
  • Completely compatible with P3D V4 and V5, as well as FSX:A (SP2) and FSX:SE
  • ... and much more!
Demo coming soon - stay tuned for more info!

P3D SpacePort Team

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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

LAS (Launch Abort system) in action

Two videos of LAS (Launch Abort System) in action. First, a pad abort mode, where the Orion crew capsule is separated from the malfunctioning rocket still on the launch pad, and catapulted away to be safely recovered using ballistic parachute recovery system:

https://youtu.be/IdXvCg72v9c

Next, an in-flight abort mode, where the Orion crew capsule is separated while the main stack, after being launched, has developed a catastrophic malfunction. The main stack then continues downrange until it reaches a safe distance over open water, where a self-destruct command will be issued:

https://youtu.be/EvIPKXExUCY

P3D SpacePort Team
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

Full launch-to-orbit sequence

The following video (duration 14:45 minutes) shows the FULL sequence from launch to a stable orbit, starting with the
  • SLS (Space Launch System) Artemis Block 1 launch
  • orientation maneuvers (azimuth roll and pitchover - gravity turn)
  • SRB (Solid Rocket Boosters) staging
  • LAS (Launch Abort System) jettison
  • ESM (Encapsulated Service Module) Panels jettison
  • Guidance to desired apogee
  • main engine cutoff (MECO)
  • second stage (ICPS/ESM/Orion) staging
  • ICPS (Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage) ignition to a parking orbit
  • ICPS main engine cutoff
  • Orion/ESM (European Service Module) Solar panel deployment
P3D SpacePort Team
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Orbital Space Station demo

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

NASA Artemis Orion docked to a small orbital space station

Latest in the demo video series can be found here. Video shows off a modular orbital structure (a small space station) and the Orion hard docked to the space station's docking port.
  • Orion uses its RCS (Reaction Control System) to change space station's attitude (pitch and then roll)
  • Orion then undocks, and performs station keeping maneuvers
  • Orion then attempts to re-dock again, but it is unsuccessful due to misalignment.
Space station was assembled in-sim, from modules modeled after real-life ISS components such as Destiny and Unity habitat nodes, docking adapters and solar arrays, and some conceptual hardware such as connecting truss-tunnels and inflatable pressurized habitation modules: (from Orion outward)
  • PMA (Pressurized Mating Adapter)
  • Unity Node
  • Modular Solar Array (x2)
  • Destiny Node
  • Truss Tunnel connector
  • Unity Node
  • Modular Solar Array (x2)
  • Truss Tunnel connector (x2)
  • NASA TransHab Inflatable Habitation Module (x2)
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dafyddp3d
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by dafyddp3d »

Wow! Could this be the "Something Big" that's coming? (P3D home page!)
Can't wait to see this on triple monitors and view-groups. Who are P3D Spaceport team - are you allied to LM or independent?
I used to have a lot of fun with "Orbiter" developed by Martin Schweiger years ago, looking forward to this release! Good Luck!
Dave Nash

P3D v5.1.8.26742 on Win 10 64 bit (20H2.19041.804)
3 x 4k Monitors driven by 3xGTX1080Ti
Mobo MSI X99A SLI Plus, with Core i7-5930K @ 4.2GHz, 32GB Mem (3000MHz), Corsair M500 SSDs
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

Hi!

Thanks for your interest - no, "Something Big" is not (as far as we know) related to our work. Also, we are not a part of LM, we are a small independent software studio that has been developing FS-related products since the days of FS2000. We have been working on spaceflight add on for FSX:A and FSX:SE for a few years now, and now we've ported it to P3D, taking advantage of some of P3D's functionality, and looking into further potential of what the future versions of P3D might allow us to do.

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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

NASA Orion capsule re-entry video

Introducing the video sequence of atmospheric re-entry of the NASA's Orion capsule, somewhere over the Indian Ocean, from atmospheric interface to parachute sequence start. Features 3D dynamic re-entry plasma cloud effects, dynamic trail effects, and heat shield heating and ablation (from space-cold, glowing white, to cooling off red and ablated white)

More videos of our work in progress at our YouTube Channel

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delta_lima
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by delta_lima »

Hi SpacePort dev team!

I had recently discovered the dev videos on YouTube, and had to join the LM board to say a huge "Thanks!!". Like other posters, I've had lots of fun with serious space sim products like Orbiter, most especially during early days of FS when the ceiling was that miserable FL100! :)

I've dreamed for a long time for the day when the FSX (or now that I've moved on to P3Dv4.5) the LM platform could be the single place I could enjoy atmospheric flight and spaceflight. It looks like we're headed in that way, and I welcome that.

The aeronautical engineer in me is curious how you'll address the gravitational/orbital limitations of P3D, which as I understand, don't model the rougly linear g to altitude relationship, nor the anomalous non-uniformity of earth's gravity across various regions (eg: southern Indian subcontinent vs the Indonesian archipelago).

I also noted from the manual in the FSX demo (haven't installed, since I assumed it only works on FSX , not P3D) that RCS and translational thrusters are strictly key operated - is that correct? More specifically, will there be an eventual implementation where our joysticks can operate the thrusters? For example, with a toggle feature that allow a button to toggle between rotational and translation inputs? That would really enhance the immersion.

Further afield, will there be historical mods either included - or through SDK, made possible, that utilizes some of the code to recreate simulations for Mercury, Gemini, the earth orbit Apollos (7, 9, Skylab, ASTP), DynaSoar, Shuttle, etc? I'm thinking something like DynaSoar would be an exciting simulation that's never been done except for in Orbiter (and an older version, at that) and would combine the interesting elements of the Titan launch vehicle with the atmospheric aircraft-style reentry/landing that had it been successful, would have predated the Shuttle's by roughly two decades.

Needless to say, I'm very excited, and look forward to whatever your team comes up with. If you have any testing or reference material needs, don't hesitate to reach out - I've accumulated a lot over the years that I'm happy to contribute to a worthy cause.

Cheers,

dl
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

Hello, Delta Lima, and thank you for your kind words of encouragement and support!

First, in general, I'm glad to say that EVERYTHING that you mentioned will indeed be possible, or already is. SpacePort, both FSX and P3D versions (which, btw, share the same code base) is not in absolutely any way, shape or form relying on any of P3D's internal aerodynamic or physical properties. P3D is, in a sense, used as a visual display engine - that is it. We have completely overridden P3D's flight, atmospheric and gravitational model and "imposed" our own, astrodynamic/ballistic model. We've accomplished this by integrating a sophisticated third-party physics engine into SpacePort, which, along with precisely simulating ballistic and astrodynamic properties of bodies in motion, also features an incredibly precise collision model which greatly surpasses what is available in P3D. The objects correctly collide and interact with other objects, things fall to the ground and realistically bounce, spin and come to rest with natural feel to it. The best part is, all this was accomplished completely, 100% using pure SimConnect - there are no exotic hacks or anything out of the norm that we needed to implement to accomplish this. We haven't even used any of P3D's expanded SimConnect functionality - the code base for FSX and P3D is nearly identical.

As to your specific questions:

...curious how you'll address the gravitational/orbital limitations of P3D - As I mentioned, we've replaced P3D's physics engine with our own, and indeed, we've implemented Newton's universal gravitational equation which indeed takes distance into account. As for the non-uniform gravity across Earth's surface, we have NOT taken this into account yet, as we feel this can take a bit of a back seat to more important features we are implementing. These mass concentrations (dreaded MASCONS) would be more relevant in lunar operations, but as I mentioned, we will keep this in mind for future development. We already have an idea of how to implement this, and it wouldn't be that difficult at all.

...RCS and translational thrusters are strictly key operated - is that correct? - That is correct, and absolutely, we will implement joystick/peripheral support. We just need to get to it.

...will there be historical mods either included - or through SDK, made possible - Absolutely - and we are counting on 3rd party developers (although, there might be a bit of a learning curve to it ;) ). We have made SpacePort highly modular and flexible. We chose our "test case" SLS because it is relevant and current (and a rather complex assembly of parts), and so that we can develop a complex launcher and iron out all the potential pitfalls. Historical models - Mercury, Gemini, Vostok - are quite a bit simpler, and definitely a prime candidate for a sophisticated, high quality, historically accurate add-on. All the "innards" are in right now - quite frankly, the largest chunk of work would be high quality 3D models, interior and exterior, and obviously, instrumentation. As for DynaSoar - we already have a nice little Dreamchaser model. However, a bit of a showstopper is the flight model - we don't have any. Basically, SpacePort is based on ballistic model, and it has a rudimentary flight model applied to capsules during the reentry (capsules produce lift during reentry and can indeed be steered). However, for more sophisticated lifting bodies (DynaSoar, Shuttle, Dream Chaser), for now, they fall like a rock :) One thing that we hope will work is, we can re-impose P3D flight model at certain speed during re-entry, where the lifting body starts to transition from ballistic to aerodynamic, but we haven't tested that yet.

Perhaps the most powerful feature of SpacePort is its highly flexible scripting engine, a sort of a condition-event driven internal computer (we call them "sequencers"). They are used to tell an object what to do when certain conditions arise. They are written using simple text files and a specific, user-friendly syntax, and can be assigned to any object SpacePort is in control of. They can be very simple - for example, a launch tower has its own sequencer which, using timed triggers, controls various parts of launch tower tasks (retract crew access bridge, start noise suppression system, start ignition sparks, retract umbilicall arms, etc.) They can also be rather sophisticated - we are using one to trigger events after the capsule re-entry, so that the parachute sequence is correctly deployed. Or - we use another sequencer that we attach to solid rocket boosters that basically tells it "when SRB thrust to weight ratio is lower than 1, detach" - basically, when a SRB becomes dead weight, time to discard it. Also, we are using sequencers for the initial azimuth-pitchover maneuvers and pseudo-guidance (GNC) of the launch vehicle. In fact, the entire SLS launch sequence is controlled using user-written script - there is no internal hard code that controls it. There is even a feature where you can write your own text based P3D menu with executable commands, entirely scripted using sequencers (you will see this in action in the upcoming demo). The point is - all of them are user-written, and thus, highly customizable and flexible.

I hope this answers your questions. If you have any more, I'd be happy to answer/elaborate on them.

Cheers,
Mitch
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by dafyddp3d »

"..RCS and translational thrusters are strictly key operated - is that correct? - That is correct, and absolutely, we will implement joystick/peripheral support. We just need to get to it."

For users employing FSUIPC to program Joystick buttons and even axes to send keystrokes, this shouldn't be too much of a problem, assuming there is no barrier to using FSUIPC with your system.
Dave Nash

P3D v5.1.8.26742 on Win 10 64 bit (20H2.19041.804)
3 x 4k Monitors driven by 3xGTX1080Ti
Mobo MSI X99A SLI Plus, with Core i7-5930K @ 4.2GHz, 32GB Mem (3000MHz), Corsair M500 SSDs
FSUIPC, PMDG 747, 777
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by BostonJeremy77 »

Do you guys have a website? Any estimate for when this will become available?
Jeremy Smirnov
Chicago, IL
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Re: Introducing P3D SpacePort - spaceflight module for P3D

Post by P3D SpacePort Team »

Hi Jeremy,

We are releasing demo version shortly, and the full version is still at least a few months away. What is missing is the precise algorithm for, basically, "finding things in orbit".

Web site: http://www.terrabuilder.com/TB/fsx-spaceport.html
Steam page (although it looks like we won't be able to use Steam platform since P3D is not on it): https://store.steampowered.com/app/7763 ... SpacePort/
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/TBAdmin

Cheers,
Mitch
P3D SpacePort Team
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