30 May

Copenhagen moves forward on next version of open source rocket


The Copenhagen rocket is a small group of volunteers who are doing some amazing things. What’s even cooler is that they offer up their designs to everyone.

“Nothing is secret at Copenhagen Suborbitals, we are not Boeing or SpaceX – so please go ahead – download the entire rocket here (Solidworks 2013, IGES and STP, 13MB total) – this machine will take you into space. If you follow this blog and my twitter profile you will find this rocket for download in greater detail, as development continues. Why not build it yourself?”

(Via HEAT 1600 Concept Development – The Manifestation of Dreams and Ambitions (for Download) | Wired Science | Wired.com.)

You can see video of the last launch here.

17 Apr

Stripping down and rebuilding the F-1 rocket at NASA

Ars Technica has an amazing, in depth article about NASA’s taking apart an F-1 rocket (used on the Apollo) to figure out exactly how it was built, and to possibly reuse it for the future rocket system NASA is building for asteroid and Mars missions in the future:

“The engineers removed the soot and re-scanned, but even this seemingly trivial accumulation yielded valuable data—sooting is a problem with kerosene-powered engines, so understanding how it builds up inside the engine could reduce its occurrence.

‘Because they didn’t have the analytical tools we have today for minimizing weight, everything was very robust,’ noted Betts, when I asked what they found as they tore down the engine. ‘That’s apparent in really every aspect of the engine. The welds—’

‘Oh, the welds!’ interrupted Case. ‘The welds on this engine are just a work of art, and everything on here was welded.’ The admiration in his voice was obvious. ‘Today, we look at ways of reducing that, but that was something I picked up on from this engine: just how many welds there were, and how great they looked.'”

(Via How NASA brought the monstrous F-1 “moon rocket” engine back to life | Ars Technica.)