100 Subscribers!

My YouTube channel has just crossed 100 subscribers. I post all kinds of videos from rockets to programming. Check it out!



Rocket Science 101 Course Syllabus

Rocket Science 101
Course Syllabus
Daniel Taylor Hastings
                Aerospace Engineering
                Iowa State University

  • Trigonometry, minimum knowledge of calculus, basic physics
  • Rocket Propulsion Elements (7th edition) Sutton and Biblarz
  • Handbook of Model Rocketry (7th edition) Stine and Stine
  • Students grade themselves. There will be several quizzes and one exam, weighted by:
  • Quizzes: 25%
  • Semester project 25%
  • Final Exam 50%


1.       Definition of a rocket
2.       Math background
3.       Physics background
4.       Chemistry/thermodynamics background
5.       Basic nozzle theory
6.       Forces on a rocket
7.       Aerodynamic drag
8.       Flight stability
9.       Thrust and weight
10.   Analysis of flight
11.  Model rocketry
12.   Semester project

Remember:  There is nothing magical about rocket science. It is just a sampling of subjects such as physics, chemistry and math, all applied to the goal of flying through space. You don’t have to be a G-whiz to become a rocket scientist, despite the popular phrase “it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to .” It really doesn’t take a rocket scientist to study math, science and engineering and love space travel.

Level-2 Certified After All?

I got my new Tripoli Rocketry member card in the mail yesterday, and lo and behold, it says "cert level 2." I tried for level 2 three times last summer, and *supposedly* failed each time. Evidently one of those flights (probably the last one) was not such a failure after all.


Rocket Science 101

I'm going to start a video series on YouTube on basic rocket science. Nothing too complex or too basic; I will be starting with concepts like Newton's laws and gradually get more complicated to describe the motion of a rocket. At the end, I will give an introduction to the actual engineering of a rocket (model rocket).

My aim is to get more people interested in the field of aerospace engineering, specifically rocketry and spacecraft. Even if only a handful of people watches these videos and only one of them is inspired to dig deeper, these videos will have been a success.

I will post a short "syllabus" soon.


Everything You Wanted to Know About Sound in 12 Minutes

I like it when people are smart and creative and humorous and competent and comprehensive.