May 31, 2018


Centauri engineers have been working on developing an alternative to the large Nooleus X launch stack for getting a Draco capsule into space.  One vehicle being tested is the Nooleus-D.

The Nooleus-D is a tricky vehicle to launch.  If you follow a normal launch procedure and keep the main engines at full throttle, the vehicle with not make it to orbit.  However with good throttle control it is possible to get the entire launch stack to orbit.  This leaves all the fuel in the Draco capsule for a trip to the station and return to HOM. 

If you do need to separate the Draco crew capsule from the Nooleus first stage, pitch control is critical. The Draco crew capsule engines are not able able to correct the pitch angle.  If the vehicle is pitched to the right following a normal launch path, it will start to slowly tip further to the right after separation and eventually go below horizontal.  Prior to separation the Nooleus-D should be pitched to near vertical to prevent the Draco crew capsule from pitching back toward HOM before reaching orbit.

Even with a full tank of fuel, the Draco capsule will use it all up during the round trip with no fuel reserves.  The pilot must be careful to leave enough fuel to decelerate on the return leg.  This means that the return leg is at a slower sub-escape velocity speed that the outbound leg.

Nooleus-D in space

Due to the fuel concerns the Nooleus-D is best suited for in orbit tours of HOM and not for station resupply missions or crew changes.

May 29, 2018

Blueprint Kit

It was the Memorial Day weekend in the US so not much work got done at Centauri Spaceworks for this week's blog posts. Today's post is a shot of the station planner SVG kit that was used for the Pollux and Trade Station Gamma.  This kit is based off of Commander Oz's SVG station planner kit.  It is still a work in progress.

May 24, 2018

Trade Station Gamma

The labor shortage at the workshop has gotten worse so this week there is another set of plans for you to build.  These plans are for a modest size space station to support interplanetary trade. The design is named Trade Station Gamma.  It functions as a small cargo port where ships can dock and resupply or transfer cargo.

With two main airlocks for ships to dock at this station is best suited for moderately traveled trade routes. There is a larger trade station design in the works that includes four main airlocks, two high security docking bays, and four auxiliary docking ports. The larger plan would be more suitable for heavy traffic trade routes near HOM.

Despite it's modest size, the station is fully equipped with facilities.  These include a control room, oxygen garden, and medical bay.  There is a long rang communication antenna as well as a cargo hold for temporary storing cargo awaiting transfer to another ship.

Safety features include an asteroid and meteorite detection system mounted on the upper left support wing.  An Orion III escape pod is also docked at the lower right support wing of the station.

Be sure to comment or tweet if you build this station or modify the design.  Looking forward to seeing your builds!

May 22, 2018

Shuttle Re-imagined

In Mission 30 the player recovers the shuttle, and docks it at STA.  The shuttle can't re-enter HOM because of damaged heat shields.  This post discuss an idea for how that could be fixed and we can bring the shuttle home as well as add a new feature.


The shuttle would come in two parts: the boosters plus fuel tank, and the orbiter itself.

Splitting up the shuttle from the boosters and fuel tank would also allow for an Energia style vehicle to be constructed.  The Energia could reuse the same booster and fuel tank part, but would have a separate one time use rocket that could carry a medium payload instead of the shuttle.

After the shuttle is placed on the external tank and booster combination, the player can load up the shuttle with supplies.  A small sized payload can also be placed in the open cargo bay.


The orbiter would be launched in a side profile view, with the fuel tank and boosters on the right and the orbiter on the left.  This keeps the view consistent across all of the modes of operation.The launch tower would be displayed behind the vehicle instead of the the left.

The orbiter would follow the same pattern as other rockets of pitching over to the right during launch.  This places the orbiter on top of the external fuel tank, which is different from real life launches.  This difference is important because it sets up the orbiter in the correct orientation for re-entry with the heat shield facing down.

Shuttle on the launch pad with tower behind it


The shuttle movement would operate similar to other vehicles.  There is one additional button to support a unique feature of the orbiter.

Shuttle in orbit around HOM with controls at the bottom. One new button appears for the open doors command.

The button controls the cargo bay doors.  The cargo bay can be opened using a special button in the interface.  Once the cargo bay is open, if the cargo inside free floating.   The shuttle can be maneuvered away from the object to have it exit the cargo bay.

Shuttle on the left with cargo bay doors closed.  Shuttle on the right with cargo bay doors open and a station module shown inside

The cargo bay can also be used to capture existing objects and return them to HOM.  The shuttle can maneuver so that the object enters the empty cargo bay, and then the cargo bay doors can be closed around the object (assuming that the object would fit).  This secures the object in the cargo bay.

This cargo bay system is simple and can work with any cargo that will fit, including those that don't have a docking port.


The existing shuttle design works in space, but it just doesn't feel right for re-entry because of the position of the heat shield.  In other vehicles, the heat shield is positioned along one edge of the vehicle and this is edge of the vehicle that enters the atmosphere facing down.  The current shuttle is different, the heat shield is actually underneath and not really shown, so there is no way to position the vehicle with it facing down.  This can be fixed if the shuttle is shown in profile view instead of top down view.

The shuttle would re-enter similar to other vehicles.  The nose of the shuttle would be toward the right side of the screen, in the same orientation as in orbit.  The shuttle would tilt backwards and forwards due to turbulence. As it descends through the atmosphere, the goal would be to keep it level using thrusters.

Once the shuttle reaches a low enough altitude the landing gear can be deployed (instead of a parachute).  Then a cut scene would take over and show the shuttle landing on a runway.  A successful landing of the shuttle in sandbox mode awards the player one quick launch.

Mission 30

Mission 30 could be modified to use the new shuttle design with little impact.  Both designs have a docking port on one side of the vehicle.

Big thanks to  Chris @ York Space Agency for letting me bounce some of these ideas off of him.

May 17, 2018

Station Icarus

After the destruction of Solar Outpost 1, and the subsequent abandonment of Solar Outpost 2, the need to do solar research increased.  A new station, Icarus, was constructed.

Station Icarus close up

Station Icarus is positioned in a similar location to Solar Outpost 1. However all parts of Icarus were kept outside of the circle of influence to avoid avoid falling inward if another gravitational fluctuation occurred.  If an experiment requires being inside the sphere of influence a probe can be launched instead of placing the station in the solar orbit.

The sun and station Icarus floating some distance away at waypoint ICS

Station Icarus has been in service for some time now.  An oversight in the public relations department delayed the publication of information about it until now.

May 15, 2018

Pollux Design

The Centauri Spaceworks workshop is currently struggling with a labor shortage.  Construction of the Raza took over a week and modifications to the ISAAC Star have halted entirely.

This week, instead of releasing a fully constructed vehicle, Centauri is publishing the blue prints to a ship and outsourcing the construction to whatever agencies would like to build and evaluate it.  

Blueprint design with layout and list of parts for Pollux

The Pollux is a new design that has not been tested.  It place both the forward and reverse engines at one end of the ship. Engineers are curious to find out how well the ship rotates, or if it can be rotated at all.  They would love to hear how it works if you build it.

In consideration for construction and materials, Centauri Spaceworks will link to your post/tweet from this blog in addition to retweeting.  This is multiple contract opportunity and is not limited to just one agency.

Update:  Here is a list of everyone who has built the Pollux. They look great! Just a reminder, this is a non-exclusive contract and still open to other agencies.

May 10, 2018

The Raza (Dark Matter)

This build is based on the Raza from the sci-fi series Dark Matter.

side by side comparison of the original Raza from the tv show and the Raza constructed in Space Agency

Notable features include the 4 engine pods, created with ADS cores and Voyager X bodies.  The front two engines are for show and fuel storage as they create a rotational instability in the ship when used.  However, the two rear engines are close enough to the center line that they can be used without causing the ship to rotate when fired. The ATV at the center is well positioned for maneuvering and braking.  The pod can also be used to provide forward thrust if needed.

The pod can also double as the ship's shuttle, the Marauder.  On the show, the ship's infirmary was a re-occurring set.  The Space Agency version includes a medical bay as well.

interior view of the Raza in Space Agency

Thanks to TheTruthisWrittenInBlood for uploading the image of the original Raza.