I just started a career mode in KSP and the simplest setup fails to work. I have a RT-10 Solid Fuel booster with an Mk1 command pod on top and an Mk16 parachute at the tip. Whenever I deploy the parachute, I do hear the deployment sound but nothing happens, the parachute doesn't open and I crash into the ground.

It makes the game quite hard to play. Does anyone know if I'm doing something wrong or if this is a bug?


My first rocket

This rocket works perfectly. I can launch it and when it starts to descent I activate the parachute. The rocket slows and lands without any damage.

My second rocket

This rocket does not. When I deploy the parachute as soon as the descent starts, I hear the deployment sound but nothing actually happens. If I wait for the rocket to be lower, the speed will be too high and the parachute will break. How can I get this rocket on the ground in one piece, considering the small amount of parts available?

  • Can you post a picture of the craft in question and maybe your staging? – troylatroy Oct 13 '15 at 22:19
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    Without knowing what's going on, I'd guess that you're deploying at a highspeed which is destroying the chute. Or perhaps you've adjusted your chute settings and not realised. Right click the chute and make sure min-altitude is at least 1000m – Coomie Oct 14 '15 at 2:11
  • Thanks @troylatroy, I updated my question. The chute settings are on default. – Wouter van Dijke Oct 14 '15 at 12:48
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    Simple solution - don't 'stage' parachutes above 300m/s as @Coomie has mentioned it could get destroyed by aerodynamic forces. Don't press space right at the start of the descent, but rather closer to ground level – Sergii Zaskaleta Oct 15 '15 at 7:21
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    The most classic approach to getting your second model to survive without extra research nodes (decouplers etc) - flip the capsule upside down, attaching it with the pointy tip to the booster. The blunt bottom will slow it down enough on descent. – SF. Oct 16 '15 at 13:15

The parachute has a "Min Pressure" setting which you can adjust by right-clicking on it. The parachute won't open unless the atmospheric pressure is higher than this.

But I tried to land your vehicle and failed - it is just too aerodynamic and always points nose-first while flying through the atmosphere. That way it can't lose enough speed during descent to allow you to safely open its parachute.

Research "Engineering 101" to get the stack separator. When you don't have the science points yet: use your previous vehicle and use it to get mystery goo observation reports and crew reports landed in the water (head east), landed at grasslands (head west) and landed at various locations inside the space center (there is a different zone around each building which gives you different science results).

Then use the stack separator to build a craft where the capsule with the goo containers and the parachute can be separated from the booster. Activate the separator when the booster is burnt out. You should then be able to land it by keeping the flat side of the capsule pointed to the ground and opening your parachute at about 4000 meters.

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    I also couldn't get it to land. It slices through the atmosphere like a hot knife through butter. – troylatroy Oct 14 '15 at 22:06
  • For more precision, that parachute is only safe to open in Kerbin atmosphere at exactly 250m/s or less. Deploying by altitude is unreliable because descent speeds at the same height vary with rocket shape and descent profile. – SevenSidedDie Oct 15 '15 at 4:59

Wouter, I tried the same setup, but from what i can tell there are 2 problems.

  1. The speed/heat is too great for the chute
  2. You can't orient the rocket upward (to reduce the strain on the parachute)

I bring up #2, since in some cases that can help. With this rocket, the only way to save it (possibly) would be to decouple the RT-10 rocket. Otherwise you will need to remake the rocket if that doesn't work.

Depending on the parts you have available, I would switch out the solid fuel booster for liquid fuel and engine, because those give you the ability to control the power, fuel consumption, and also give you the ability to move the rocket (Check engine for a Gimbal). Solid rocket boosters like the RT-10 are mainly used for getting the initial thrust to help your rocket get to space (or just higher). In this case, the liquid engines can help you orient your rocket upright, and if you can, reduce the speed the rocket is falling. Both of which help prevent your parachute from being destroyed. It takes some work, but there's plenty of resources that help you make rockets.

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