2/13/10

First Test Launch!

We just conducted our first two test launches of our TARC entry. We have been really pushing ourselves to get ahead of schedule so that we can fit in as many test launches as possible before the official ones this spring. The snow on the ground complicates things just a little, but it actually saved our rocket. The first launch went well on the ascent (the easy part), but when the 24-inch plastic parachute came out it ripped right off and drifted away. The rocket came tumbling down in fifteen seconds and buried itself in the snow. Had there been no snow, the collision would have resulted in some serious damage.

So we ran back to the physics room and grabbed our spare chute. This was a heavy-duty ripstop nylon one, whose shroud lines were stitched right into the canopy. It wasn't about to fail anytime soon, but it was considerably smaller, hence our flight time was still only thirty seconds--ten short of the forty-second parameter. However, the flight was absolutely spectacular.

There isn't any altitude data yet since we are still waiting on our altimeter. Some people tried measuring an angle, but a hundred feet isn't much of a baseline...

Suprisingly our egg survived! After its harrowing first flight we took it out to examine it. Just a few hairline fractures in the shell, but it was still alive! We placed it back in its well-padded cockpit for the next flight, which went beautifully. Our egg survived a flight with fractures in its shell!

Here it is!!

4 comments:

The EGE said...

Never use a plastic chute on anything you want to fly more than once that can't survive a free-fall. You can buy ripstop nylon chutes most anywhere, or you can get ripstop nylon for about 5 bucks a yard at most fabric stores. They don't melt together and they unfold in cold weather.

R2K said...

Nice work team! What motor is this?

I would agree on using a nylon 'chute, I have so many extra sitting around. If you want a spare, I can send one your way perhaps. Just tell me the size you need and I will check the collection.

Anonymous said...

We Are Launching Again Today 2/19
Matthew

Anonymous said...

we have to use an f or smaller for the competition this was an f-22

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