So as you must know by now (have you read the project outline?) we’ve been given a specific class of motor we are allowed to use for this rocket. It’s all about altitude to win this one, so we need to design a rocket with that in mind.
At the last meeting we went over the basics of OpenRocket, and sent everyone back to work on some designs; so far we have a rudimentary outline of the rocket, which is far from complete:
Our first basic design.
We know it isn’t much at the moment, at least we know we are aiming for a minimum diameter rocket, but we have more pressing issues to worry about…
…we need to choose a motor!
You can see some of the thrust curves, which is a graph of the performance of a rocket motor (thrust vs. time), of some of the motors we have the choice of using below:
(Click the images to make them larger)


116G12613A (White Thunder)


108G5712A (Classic)


107G8314A (Blue Streak)


84G8811A (Smoky Sam)
If you’re not 100% sure what they are showing. watch the animation below to get an idea of what they mean and represent:
Also, try heading over to NASA to get some more information about thrust curves and how they represent performance.
Before we decide on which motor is best, we need to get a better idea of what the total mass of the rocket will be and then we need to run some more simulations gain the greatest apogee. I won’t be long before we start order supplies, so keep an eye out for this sign on any university deliveries:
Speak to you soon!
Challenge:
If you think you have a good grasp of the concepts, and have an idea of which rocket motor would be best to use*, why don’t you drop us a message and we’ll let you know if you get it right!
Good luck guessing**
*Hint: try thinking in terms of having a set, constant mass having to be launched by each motor (in reality the mass will be continuously changing).
**or logically/mathematically working out which one might be best for our situation… Max altitude, minimum diameter!