The Personal Log of Captain William (Bill) D. Crater:

Stardate  97724.33 - “I'll see you on the dark side of the moon.”, Pink Floyd

It’s time to go dark, to boldly go where no man has gone before. Starting this month we begin the exploration of the dark side of the Moon. We all have high hopes that water is hiding in the dark recesses of the craters on the Moon’s far side. Some have speculated that the Cabeus crater alone could hold a billion gallons. That’s a LOT of potential rocket fuel! So, it is time to start making tracks and draining packs!

With a full fleet of RRCs (Remote Rover Craft) ready to roll our goal this month is to start exploring the Korolev Crater on the far side of the Moon. This is one of the largest craters on the far side and should contain plenty of water to kick our electrolysis plant into action. Exploration can be challenging, however, due to the distance from New Huntsville to the far side. Fortunately, a few of our clever engineers have a plan.

The team has built an RRC of epic proportions, called the MERRP (Mobile Extreme Remote Recharging Platform). This is a remotely piloted vehicle, about the size of a city bus, that carries everything needed to remotely explore the furthest reaches of the Moon. Completely covered in solar cells, the MERRP charges on the go. Once at its base of operations, the MERRP opens its lower doors and becomes an RRC garage. MERRP can hold up to 20 RRCs and is able to recharge 10 RCCs at once from the roof-mounted solar cells. From the comfort of New Huntsville, up to 5 pilots can explore the Korolev crater at the same time. It gives the ability to explore these remote areas quickly and efficiently.

The pilots of these RRCs are a very interesting bunch. Even the tightest crew has its share of “outcasts”, a small group that marches to its own beat. They are very passionate about what they do; they live for long-range exploration. They have become a very tightknit group that some have jokingly referred to as “Team Blacksheep”. 

In honor of our very own Team Blacksheep, I thought it only fitting to highlight the original Masters of Long-Distance FPV in this month’s Crate!

Let’s take a look at the contents of this month’s Crate:

  • Team Blacksheep Unify Pro32 HV (MMCX)
    • If you have a passion for going the distance, then you are very familiar with the Unify video transmitter. This is Team Blacksheep’s newest version, and they just keep getting better. If you demand more power, more durability, less power draw, AND the ability to upgrade (via Crossfire) future firmware, then this is the video transmitter for you! The best pilots in the world have depended on the Unify for years, now is your chance to do the same.  
  • Team Blacksheep Triumph Pro (MMCX 90)
    • Do you remember the big, ugly cloverleaf antennas we used to fly on Earth? Over the years, the innovator of the cloverleaf, IB Crazy, took that original bulky and fragile design and started improving on it. This is a result of all that hard work, the TBS Triumph Pro antenna; true circular polarization for amazing range. It is also as tough as Moon rock!
  • Team Blacksheep Glass ND Filter- ND16
    • With as good as our GoPro cameras are, they are not great. Sometimes your footage gets a little overexposed, it happens whether you are flying on the Earth or the Moon. A Neutral-Density Filter, or ND filter, reduces the amount of light that enters a camera’s lens. The TBS glass filter is made from laser-cut glass, giving it an extremely clean and sharp finish. This is an ND16 filter, meaning it reduces the amount of light entering the camera by 1/16, which is good for most light conditions.
  • T-Motor propeller 5146 (3 sets)
    • Almost out of props from the last Crate? Are your Boosters hungry for more plastic? T-Motor says crash all you want! These 5146s are made for racing, but freestyle tough. Plenty of BOOM without LiPo puff, these props are the perfect balance between power and efficiency. Whether you grind laps or hit gaps, these props will take good care of you.   
  • Team Blacksheep/FPVCrate February Sticker Sheet
    • Walking through the Bunkhouse I noticed that Ensign Santiago Espindola’s door was obliterated by stickers! It had to be 3 stickers deep in some areas. I asked Santiago about it and he said, “I started with a few stickers and before I knew it, everyone was pasting my door!” Running out of stickers to put on Santiago’s door? This month’s Crate has you (and his door) covered.
  • Discount Coupon Card
    • Need a little help to make your FPV dollars go further? The Crate comes through again! Here is your monthly allotment of discount awesomeness. Just in time for your resupply, the FPVCrate discount card is your answer when it comes to getting the most for your money. We crash, and we need more gear. This will make it a little easier to stay in the air.    

Exploration is at the heart of the Human Condition. Wherever, whenever, the Human Race explores. We are hard-wired to seek out new frontiers. Keep reaching past the horizon, you never know what you will find. 

This is Bill D. Crater, signing off. 

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