Rockets of the Space Race
My next project is going to be another education app called “Rockets of the Space Race” (or something similar) and will focus on the rockets developed during the space race, starting with the V2. This is closely related to the history of spaceflight project that I shelved a few months ago as it will use much of the information I collected.
The app is going to feature detailed 3D models of the important rockets and will allow the user to break multi-stage rockets up to see the individual stages, kind of like those toy cars with the doors that open and close. General information about the vehicle will be included and rockets can be compared to one another, including showing specs and a side by side views to measure their relative sizes. They can also be filtered by country, stages and any other feature that I think is worth including.
It will also be possible to view them as a family tree to trace the lineage of different designs, which is pretty straightforward for the Russian programs, but a lot more difficult with the US as they used a mix-n-match approach of stacking bits of different rockets on top of each other to increase lifting capabilities.
This app will focused more on graphics quality and will be designed with HD tablets in mind, unlike my previous apps which began life when low-res phones were all that was on offer. In general, I’m going to use large textures and high polygon counts wherever it’s necessary. Without the need to display a dozen different objects in one shot, like in Solar Explorer, it’s going to be easier to squeeze more out out of the hardware.
To start with, I’ve created two test models to see how they look. These are the V2 in it’s WWII camouflage, and the US Navaho G26, a two-stage supersonic cruise missile developed in the 50′s which featured upgraded V2 engines in the booster stage that would later be used in the Atlas, Thor and Titan programs.
I specifically chose the Navaho as a test because it is probably one of the worst documented vehicles – there’s no detailed blueprints like there is for most of the other rockets in the US program. This is probably because the project was abandoned before the G38 variant was completed, which was supposed to be the one that would enter active service.
Oh, and it’s being developed for Android and Playbook.