We're building a full size rocket motor for our Hermes Spacecraft. Help us Kickstart the next generation of space travel! Read more
This project was successfully funded on April 28, 2012.
Our Plan of Attack
After our core team gets done working at our respective day jobs, we regularly meet two days a week: Wednesday evenings and Sunday. Wednesday evenings are usually from 6-9pm, and Sundays are all day. Now that summer is coming, and Phoenix is warming up, we try to start earlier and earlier to beat the heat.
We usually meet at the shop, but occasionally will go to other people’s houses to work on presentations, or sometimes coffee shops (and bars) to hash our designs and ideas. In addition to our physical meetings, each of us is working on our respective areas when we have time on nights and throughout the weekend, whether it’s designing, analysis, research, updating our media, or coordinating with our volunteer network.
Like any task driven project, extra time gets put in when deadlines approach. Before NIWeek 2011, we met almost daily to get the Hermes prepared for it’s journey to Austin. Before and right after Kickstarter launched, we did the same to ensure we had everything ready. (Of course, we did not! Anyone who’s created a project on Kickstarter will understand).
The next few weeks..
So as our Kickstarter project comes to a close, I wanted to give you a look into what we’ll be doing for the next several weeks, once we’ve received our funding:
1. Take care of our backers. Of course, we’ll be working to fulfill all of our pledge awards. We’ll be able to get certain items very quickly (like the stickers and T-Shirts). The higher tier items will take more time since we’re handcrafting these items, but we’ll keep everyone updated along the way (all items will be fulfilled by their estimated delivery date).
2. Make Progress on our Design Review. We’ve been working with some groups to get our 3D scan into a useable model, and it’s almost ready to go. Once that’s done, we’ll be using it for some aerodynamic and thermal analysis to verify the Hermes design will work for our mission profiles. It also lets us begin the integration process. We’ll be using a 3D integration to begin putting in all of the subsystems, components, and all internal workings to make sure our sizing is close. Of course, not all components and parts have been selected or developed yet! But this lets us move in the right direction.
3. Run through more small motor tests. We’ve been testing out several fuel and thermal protectant combinations. We have another half dozen runs to go through with our 2” engines before we feel we established enough of a baseline to go back up to a 3” run. We would then run a few 3” motor tests, using our newly developed rocket monitoring and test system to work out any kinks before scaling up to our large test. And of course:
4. Design our 10” Rocket Motor. We will review our milestone chart for the design, assembly and test of our full scale motor core test. We’ll design and CAD out all of the parts, start work on the automation of our rocket monitoring and test system, find quotes for the remaining sensors and DAQ components that we need, and begin the process of integrating it all together.
I’m sure there are several of you that are very interested to here more on how we’ll be tackling these issues. If you’ve pledged $25 or more, we’ll be sending out some detailed information on our game plan soon after our Kickstarter campaign ends. Some of the information we’ll send you we’re not going to share with the general public at all. You’re going to get the first crack at it, and provide us your input and feedback if you want to. That’s just some of what exclusive access means to us.