I have the very first, beginner rocket in Kerbal Space Program. I set my pressure for the parachute to deploy to the minimum. And also I did put it in the second stage. When the parachute icon turns red, it wont let me deploy. But if I do it to late it just burns up. And whenever I deploy it, it does not open up, so I keep going max speed. And I always deploy my parachute before 280.0 m/s. I did A test where as soon as it transitioned from red to white, I deployed, and still, I crashed. Please help!

3 Answers 3


If you don't slow your rocket down to speed where the parachute is safe to open, it would get ripped and destroyed anyway, so it's of no help. What you need is to brake using air drag to a speed where the parachute is safe to open first (500m/s for drogue, 200m/s for normal parachutes).

I guess you're trying to land in the same configuration as you launch - rocket + booster + possibly fins. That makes it very aerodynamic and so you exceed any safe speeds and burn up. You need to place a decoupler between the capsule and the rest of the rocket, and stage it before entering the atmosphere (or early after). The capsule will orient itself "blunt end forward" and its flat bottom will brake very efficiently as long as your trajectory is at least moderately curved (don't plunge straight down!) - then the parachute icon will turn yellow or green, stage the parachute and it will open according to the settings slowing you down.

Later on you may try using other elements to improve airbraking performance. Airbrakes, service bay with open doors, elevons with parameters tweaked to create no drag on the way up, and a lot when deployed, inflatable heat shield - these will help you landing larger craft.

  • I just added A decoupler between the cockpit and the rocket, and it worked... no idea why, but thanks! Jun 28, 2019 at 17:01
  • 1
    @Azadanzan_S: Air drag. You lost enough speed to deploy the parachute safely. One of bigger challenges of the game is to build lean rockets going up, that are as not-lean as possible when going down.
    – SF.
    Jun 28, 2019 at 17:10
  • As @SF. says, more drag - or to be precise a higher drag to mass ratio. as that very light little pod falls through the atmosphere leading with its flat bottom. Aug 20, 2019 at 15:26

On the beginning of your gameplay I suppose you have a simple cockpit with a tiny solid fuel booster. If you follow the tutorial, you'll see that tweaking parachutes settings isn't very useful at the beginning.

Check if your parachute is staged (press space), this should deploy automatically the parachute when it turns white.

Other tests you can do :

  • lower the solid fuel quantity in the VAB to not fall from too high, leaving time to deploy your parachute
  • aim for slightly east when you launch, so you'll have a smooth ballistic trajectory instead of a free fall
  • (warning, just for testing) put your parachute in the first stage (the same as your main booster), it should deploy automatically when you launch

In the beginning tutorial, you can't adjust fuel or add decouplers. I tried coming down broadside to slow myself, but the thrusters are not strong enough for that. What finally worked was to put the ship into a hard end over end spin, to slow my descent so the chute would deploy.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .