Re: Propulsion and rot, was Re: Orbit calculations

From: Michael Lorrey (
Date: Fri Mar 09 2001 - 11:30:56 MST

I recently bought X-Plane (K-Mart for $39.95), which comes pre-loaded
with dozens of different aircraft, as well as "Plane Maker" and "Part
Maker" with which the individual can design their own aircraft, apply
their custom 'skins' to the aircraft of their choice, and alter
pre-existing aircraft (wings, engines, control panels, control surfaces,
loadings, wing sections, etc...).

Get this: You can fly the space shuttle through an orbital re-entry to
land at the airport of choice with this simulator. You can also download
a Dyna-Soar sim-pack from to fly the Dyna-Soar on an
airdrop from a B-52.

X-Plane does a very good job of calculating the aerodynamics of the
aircraft it simulates. I just need to figure out how to import DXF files
into it, as its 3D modeling engine in "Plane Maker" is rather simple
compared to others.

You can design planes with up to two vertical stabs, three wings, and
you can do piston, turbo-prop, turbine, and rocket propulsion.

"Michael M. Butler" wrote:
> As far as the orrery goes, maybe John Walker could be persuaded to
> release his source coed for Home Planet.
> As for the rest: well, Falcon 4.0 is perhaps instructive. It shipped
> with lots of bugs, and the passionate effort of manic aficionados
> provided patches and workarounds.
> I think that for practical playability you'd need to have "cold
> sleep"/timelapse for the planetary missions. :)
> But yeah, even a hardcore sim like Falcon--high (more realistic)
> workload, etc.--is a bang bang game, and one of the most decried things
> about it is that you don't get to plan campaigns, just fly a boatload of
> sorties over Korea.
> wrote:
> > The "dream sim" I have imagined would have at its core a very realistic
> > digital orrery as the basic ground within which the rest of the system would
> > operate, just as modern flight simulator programs have come to have
> > increasingly realistic aerodynamics simulations at their core.

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