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Here's my attempt at some simple rocket automation that's slightly more advanced than a hydrosensor connected to the gantry and bunker doors and the rocket input connected to the rocket output. It's for newer players hitting space for the first time. The first figure shows a typical rocket setup having four rockets, a scanner for each rocket, a command capsule gantry for the astronaut, an optional gantry to load oxylite into the oxidizer tank, and a silo having bunker doors for each rocket silo. The second figure shows the automation overlay and I'll focus on the automation for one rocket. The other setups are exactly the same except for the wiring runs. The automation consists of an AND gate, a Scanner, and the Rocket itself. The first input (A) of the AND gate connects the scanner output (which send a green signal when the rocket is detected approaching the base), the Bunker Doors Input (which open when a green signal is received), the Rocket Output (which sends a green signal when the Rocket Ready is ready to launch), and through a NOT gate to the inputs to one or more Gantries. The second input (B) is connected to a manual on/off switch or any other switch you want to add to further automate the setup. The switch is needed to prevent the rocket from taking off automatically once all the boxes of the rocket launch checklist have been ticked off. In practice this is useful for preventing, say, your research rocket from blasting off to the same planet it has just researched once it has refueled. Or your cargo rocket from visiting the same planet once again after its resources have become depleted. This is where some industrious person could add a counter using the new logic modules to program the rocket to automatically make five trips to the same planet before stopping. One issue that this automation doesn't prevent is that the rocket will automatically refuel when it lands. Sadly, you have to do this manually like a peasant unless you want to automate your fuel lines as well. The Output (C) is connected to the Rocket Input and tells the rocket to launch. when inputs one AND two are green. In use, with this set-up, when the rocket is ready to launch (the checklist is complete) the rocket sends a green signal to input one which opens the bunker doors and retracts the gantries. If the manual switch is set to the On position the rocket will take off as soon as the bunker doors are fully opened if they aren't already. If the switch is set to the Off position the rocket will sit there waiting for you to launch it. With the bunker doors open! so if you don't want your rocket pounded with meteors during a storm while you wait to launch, the easiest thing to do is to change the destination to a planet out of reach in the star map. This will close the bunker doors and extend the gantries so your astronaut can run for a quick potty break. For some reason, astronauts trapped in rockets get stressed and you will lose the "maintain all dupes above 16 morale" condition which confuses many players. During landing, the space scanner will detect the rocket as it approaches IF BUNKER DOORS ARE OPEN SUCH THAT AT LEAST ONE SCANNER ON YOUR NETWORK IS EXPOSED TO THE SKY. At least I think this is how it works based on observations. So if a meteor shower starts and your bunker doors are closed while your rocket is approaching but while it is too far out to be detected, your rocket will not be detected even when it comes into range and will dutifully destroy your bunker doors and smash your extended gantries. Fun times. Fortunately it doesn't happen very often. Usually your rocket comes into range while the bunker doors are opened, a storm starts after the rocket has been detected which keeps the silo doors open, or the bunker doors open up in time for the rocket to land if the rocket came into range during a storm. This is a little counter-intuitive since the actual scanner dedicated to the rocket doesn't need sky access at all to work. But I think this is because it relies on the scanner network for the signal. Another tip is don't save your game when the rocket is close to landing because I think the bunker doors close upon loading the game and you effectively lose the signal. Some notes. Make all automation and power cables near the rocket out of steel unless you like replacing melted wires.I believe even steel can be melted by the exhaust from enough hydrogen rockets passing by though I've never seen this happen in game. If you want to include extra gantries (such as the gantry you'll need for your dupes to load oxylite or empty liquid tanks) in addition to the command console gantry all you need to do is insert a filter gate and then a buffer gate in series between the command capsule gantry and each subsequent gantry (see insert). This prevents your gantries from all opening or closing at the same time and overloading the circuit. Default settings can be used for these gates and I think the minimum time you can use is three seconds to prevent overlap. In this way you only need one conductive power line for all the rockets, gantries, and rocket scanners in your base. Hope this helps.
Hi Klei, Do you think it's possible to shorten the flying time for the Hydrogen rockets? Currently there is very little incentive to actually research and implement this type of rockets and that's the Temporal tear. The rest of the reasons could be summed up below (I'm sure there are others but it's about their probability of implementation/usage): - materials mining - both regular space materials or special (e.g. glimmering planet) - bio harvesting - either plants or creatures - sight seeing - morale booster In early space era, a steam rocket with a booster (and one oxylite) can go: - with 1 research/sightseeing module - max 30.000 km - with 1 cargo module - max 10.000 km In mid/late space era, a petroleum rocket can go (the range depends on the type of oxydizer, though it doesn't quite make sense to build a petroleum rocket and fit it with LOX): - with 1 research/sightseeing module - max 100.000 - 150.000 km - with 1 cargo module - max 60.000 - 110.000 km In late space era, the hydrogen rocket can go with either 1 research/sightseeing or a cargo module all the way to 210.000km depending on how many LH/LOX tanks you add to the rocket. My point is coming back to the beginning. Probably for most of the user base, who don't know or don't have the skills to create massive or complex contraptions (like regolith smelter or sour gas boiler) an average of 40.000km which you can easily reach with a petroleum rocket is good enough for the fun and the need of the game. Unless you are dealt a really bad hand (seed) then you can get 99% of your needs in the first 40.000km of space. Hydrogen rocket is more of a challenge with a badge/reward at the end. So, why not make the hydrogen rockets faster? A 30-50% increase in speed (therefore in return time) would make sense due to the technology and machinery you have to put in place (for obtaining and transporting LH/LOX) and would add a real incentive, at least from point of view, to have these rockets.