A student-built rocket flies higher than a record-breaking commercial airliner

Calling themselves the Cygnus Suborbitals, it’s a team of nine undergraduates from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Prescott campus. In April, the team sent a rocket on a record-breaking flight, pushing the boundaries of student-led projects.

Deneb missile took off from Rocket buff friends Facility in California’s Mojave Desert, the launch tower cleared at 9:42 a.m. local time on April 16, 2023. Tail, with a total burn time of 26.1 seconds, reached an apex of 47,732 feet (14.55 kilometers) with a top speed of 1,150 mph (1851 km / h). The rocket is named after Deneb, the brightest star in the constellation Cygnus.

Dnb launches 3 world records in the game Shutters! 🚀🚀🚀

According to Embry Riddell statementIt is the “highest-grossing college and university amateur liquid rocket launch in the United States”, and it doubled the previous record of 22,000 feet (6.7 km), set by students at the University of California, Los Angeles. Zin also broke the amateur record in rocketry, according to the team. The nine students responsible for designing, building, and testing Deneb have spent 4,000 hours over the past year on the project. The team had to spend an extra night in the desert after failing to launch the rocket on three attempts during the previous day.

Left: guilt during the flight.  Right: The Cygnus Suborbitals team.

Left: guilt during the flight. Right: The Cygnus Suborbitals team.
picture: Embry-Riddle / Rocket Development Lab

“I fell to my knees, crying, from witnessing such an amazing achievement,” Dalton Songer, team leader and aeronautical engineering student, said in the release. “Everyone was celebrating in a giant group hug. That moment was special. Something that only happens when a dedicated group of individuals come together and create something incredible against all odds.”

for contextDeneb flew a lot Higher than Mount Everest, which has an elevation of 29,032 feet (8.8 km), and higher than commercial airliners, which are no higher than 42,000 feet (12.8 km).

The rockets made by former students flew higher than the Dhib rockets. much higher. The Traveler 4 rocket built by students from the University of Southern California Technically flew into space, which soared above the 62-mile (100 km) Karman Line in April 2019. But the Traveler IV was a solid-propellant rocket, which is much simpler, cheaper, and less dangerous to build and operate than liquid rockets, among many other differences. Liquid fuel rockets, such as SpaceX’s Falcon 9 and Rocket Lab’s Electron, have higher performance and greater flexibility, and are typically used to power large launch vehicles.

Propulsion engineer Zoe Brand clean cold flow preparation parts.

Propulsion engineer Zoe Brand clean cold flow preparation parts.
picture: Embry Riddle

Deneb is the successor to a rocket called Altair, which was delayed by the covid-19 pandemic and then exploded when the team attempted to launch in October 2022. Zoe Brand, a member of the team who specializes in propulsion, said Cygnus Suborbitals learned a lot from that experience. “The bird was very heavy,” she said. “Therefore, we deliberately focused on making our rocket lighter by integrating the fuel tanks into the structural rigidity of the rocket.”

Elliot Brynner, Director of Embry-Riddle Propulsion Laboratory and Missile Test ComplexHe said that many of the students graduating from the team have secured full-time jobs at SpaceX, Blue Origin, and Firefly Aerospace. The team got its start as a Payment Design Senior Course taught by Daniel White and Jonathan Adams, and is part of a student-led course. Missile development labwhich promotes rocketry in school and provides work opportunities for undergraduates.

“We needed to prove to the world that Embry-Riddle was not only capable of building dual-fuel engine flying vehicles, but that they were the best at building them,” Songer said.

It is amazing to know that undergraduates are able to design and launch complex liquid fuel rockets, and I eagerly await the next great achievement from students of similar motivation and ambition.

For more spaceflights in your life, stay tuned Twitter and custom bookmarking for Gizmodo Spaceflight page.

See also  High Contrast Imaging Reveals Unknown Structure in Galaxy

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *