Creating a spacecraft able to fly to Duna, land there, and get back was going to be a big step for my space program. I decided that the month-long trip would need a crew of multiple Kerbals and a crew container to house them so they wouldn't go mad in a cramped capsule. It was going to be a multi-part spacecraft to be assembled in orbit. I decided to go for a three-section approach: A central command module with the habitat, avionics and power-supplies, a thruster-section with fuel and nuclear engines, and a lander that could parachute-land on Duna and then return back to orbit with a Kerbal on board. Getting the former and the latter into a stable orbit for assembly around Kerbin was easy, getting the heavy engine-section up there was a bit harder: It took me six attempts to get the thing up there, and that only worked because I re-routed the fuel from the thruster-section to go into the starting-stages. So the whole thing ended in orbit drained of fuel. Two Kerbals came up with the habitat/command-module and one came up in the lander. The crew was on board, all I needed to do now was to actually fuel the whole thing up...
|I present: The KSC Troy. Kerbonaut spacewalking for scale.|
So, the Troy was assembled. I did the fueling with smallish automated fuel-transporters. After the first one reached the Troy and transferred both RCS-monopropellant, rocket-fuel and oxidizer, I realized that it would take four more fuel-flights to actually top the ship up fully. I was in for quite a bit of tedious work (which is one reason for the long delay of this post).
|Majestic, isn't it? Sadly, that lander will not come back with it.|
|It actually works. Even a shoddy space navigator like I can do it!|
|Is this gonna cut it?|
|Aerobraking is scary.|
|Spacewalking always contains some risk. Also, notice the moon in the background.|