News Report 11 Oct 2008
Students at Southampton
University use the Cambridge Rocketry Toolbox to maximize water rocket
In a departure from the
usual application of high powered chemical rockets, students at the
University of Southampton have been applying the Cambridge Rocketry
Toolbox to the humble water rocket.
New students embarking on
the Aeronautics and Astronautics course in the school of engineering
sciences were given off the shelf kits containing inherently unstable
water rockets. They were then asked to maximize the performance of
their rockets by selecting an appropriate
volume of water propellant to use and an appropriate mass to add to the
rocket nose to improve the dynamics.
The Cambridge Rocketry
Toolbox was employed to simulate the flight path of the rockets and
optimize the parameters for maximum altitude. A flight competition
ensued where teams competed to achieve the maximum altitude. During the
competition the optimized rockets achieved altitudes of three to four
times greater than those achieved by the "out of the box" rocket.
See below for some
photographs of the event...
Measuring the rocket thrust
on a custom built rig
A speck in the distance.
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