3" Rocket Motor Test Fire
Over the past few weeks, we have been working towards a test firing of our 3" Rocket motor. This afternoon, over the holiday weekend, we successfully fired our motor for 8 seconds! The rest of the text below is discussion about how the test went. Check out the video!
(Even though I was parked a safe distance away, the test fire set off my car alarm!)
Our specifications & requirements were:
Nitrous Oxidizer & HTPB (rubber) Fuel
Single, circular fuel port
Port Diameter: 2.2 inches
Fuel Core Length: 34 inches
Target Oxidizer Flow Rate: 0.5 lb/s (Ideal: 1.2 lbs/s)
Expected Thrust: 110 lbs (Ideal: 225 lbs)
Thrust & Combustion Pressure data recorded
In-house Rocket M&C System to control all aspects of the firing.
The ideal numbers for flow rate and thrust are optimized specifically for the length and size of the motor. We chose to perform this mid-range test first as a baseline, before we moved onto the ideal. This allowed us to use less oxidizer and make sure the control system was working properly for the 3" motor.
This test was a great success! We achieved all of our objectives from above. We have also further fleshed out our operations procedure and continue to come up with good ideas for how to assemble, fire and break down the motors. These small scale test runs are crucial for figuring out what works well before we get to the large scale test firings.
We're hoping to get several things done in December, including:
- Performing an 'ideal' test firing with the 3" motor
- Purchasing some key components for our Rocket Monitoring and Control System
- Begin Fabrication on our 10" motor
- Put out some 3D models of the Hermes
- Make some progress on cockpit instrumentation
Thank you for your continued support!