Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


UC students achieve world’s highest recorded rocket flight

University of Canterbury students achieve world’s highest recorded rocket flight

August 8, 2014

A University of Canterbury student-built supersonic rocket has achieved the highest recorded altitude worldwide.

The small supersonic rocket launch from near Tekapo on July 26 was an attempt to break the New Zealand and world I-class altitude records which stood at 1117 and 4324 metres respectively.

UC rocketry research project member and postgraduate student David Wright say they attempted to obtain the New Zealand record in December 2013 using a slightly larger research rocket called Melissa. However a transmitter failure meant that the maximum altitude was never verified.

Wright says he decided to design and construct a highly-optimised rocket to make a more serious attempt - this time at the world record.

The 740 millimetre rocket, named Milly, was launched with the help of PhD Student George Buchanan and other members of the UC rocketry project near Lake Tekapo.

From the launch, the rocket, reached speeds in excess of 2000 kilometres an hour and accelerated so fast it broke the sound barrier just 70 metres above the ground. During this flight GPS data showed that the rocket reached altitudes in excess of 4889m eclipsing both the previous New Zealand and world records.

``By recording the highest ever flight for an I-class rocket we hope that New Zealand's position in the world of high power rocketry will be significantly bolstered,’’ Wright says.

``This proves that we can both compete on a world stage and lead the way by using innovative techniques to vastly improve performance of these vehicles.

``The launch acted as verification for new systems to be used by the rocketry project. These included a new altimeter and tracking system, a high performance graphite expander to improve the performance of the motor and a five metre launch guide to provide a straighter ascent to maximise altitude. The barometric pressure and GPS data received from the launch has been sent to the New Zealand Rocketry Association for verification.

``The record attempt was important for testing a new launch location suitable for the next phase of supersonic control research for the UC rocketry project. The site at Tekapo is ideal as it has 10 kilometres of land with very few trees, low wind speeds and clear air due to the Southern Alps and about seven kilometres altitude available without requiring the closure of airspace.''

The University of Canterbury runs New Zealand's first and only rocket course, under the supervision of Rutherford Discovery Fellow and senior electrical and computer engineering lecturer Dr Chris Hann.

The course has the backing from Rocket Lab Ltd in Auckland in the second semester which is open to all engineering students. See a University of Canterbury rocket launch on YouTube here: http://youtu.be/WT1_uBtmpyg.

The engineering course students are designing and implementing everything relating to rockets including the airframe, 3D printing of canards, rocket engine design, instrumentation and sensors, control systems and parachute recovery.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: NZ Dollar Catches Breath After "Goldilocks" Slump

The New Zealand dollar edged up following its dramatic slump yesterday after the Reserve Bank confirmed speculation it intervened in the currency market last month and PM John Key suggested a “Goldilocks” level far lower than at present. More>>

ALSO:

Biosecurity: Kiwifruit Claim To Hold Officials Accountable For Psa

Kiwifruit growers have joined forces to hold Biosecurity NZ accountable in the courts for its negligence in allowing 2010’s Psa outbreak that devastated New Zealand’s kiwifruit industry and exports. Foundation claimants representing well ... More>>

ALSO:

Poison: Anglers Advised Not To Eat Trout In 1080 Areas

With the fishing season opening in just a few days (1 October 2014), anglers are being warned by the Department of Conservation(DOC) not to eat trout from pristine backcountry waters and their downstream catchments, where the department is conducting 1080 poisoning operations. More>>.

ALSO:

Quotas: MPI Swoop On Suspected Fraudulent Fishing Activity

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) compliance officers swooped on a Hawkes Bay fishing enterprise today to secure evidence in an investigation into suspected fraudulent activity... “The investigation involves activity throughout the commercial supply chain – catching, landing, processing and exporting.” More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Fonterra Slashes 2015 Milk Payout, Earnings Tumble 76%

Fonterra Cooperative Group cut its forecast 2015 milk price payout by about 12 percent, citing weaker global dairy prices and said there is a risk of further declines given strong global milk production. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: RBNZ Keeps OCR At 3.5%, Signals Slower Pace Of Future Hikes

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 3.5 percent and signalled he won’t be as aggressive with future rate hikes as previously thought as inflation remains tamer than expected. The kiwi dollar fell to a seven-month low. More>>

ALSO:

Weather: Dry Spells Take Hold In South Island

Many areas in the South Island are tracking towards record dry spells as relatively warm, dry weather that began in mid-August continues... for some South Island places, the current period of fine weather is quite rare. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand

Mosh Social Media
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news