NCSSM had four Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC) teams competing this year: 

1. Project Artemis - An all girls team

2. S.A.F.E.T.I.E.S. - Student Astronauts Facing Extreme Travesties In Endless Space

3. Ro(bot)cketry - A team consisting of members from NCSSM's robotics team, FRC Team 900 - The Zebracorns

4. Fly Boys

TARC Nationals

Above are photos/videos from NCSSM Rocketry's trip to Nationals in Virginia (just outside of D.C.) on May 18th, 2019. 

On May 18th, 2019, NCSSM Rocketry traveled to Virginia (just outside of D.C.) and competed in the 2019 Team America Rocketry Challenge (see photos/videos above). 

Since TARC's theme this year was the Apollo 11 Mission, which used a Saturn V rocket, our main rocket was named "Kronos" - the ancient Greek equivalent of Saturn - and our back up was named "Titan" - Saturn's largest moon. Unfortunately, our launch of Kronos ended up being too low by 36 feet, giving us a score of 36 and putting us in 45th place; had we gone 5 feet higher, we would have qualified to re-fly the rocket for a chance to improve our score. 

Regardless, we all had a blast and look forward to another great year of rocketry next year!!

March Launch

Above are images from NCSSM Rocketry's March 17th TARC launch.

NCSSM TARC recently launched again in Bahama, NC on March 17th. 

We are excited to announce that one of our teams, S.A.F.E.T.I.E.S., qualified for Nationals in Washington, D.C. on May 18th with a score of 33! 

Although we had hoped several teams would qualify, we are still very proud of everyone for all their hard work. Due to this, members from our other teams will be attending Nationals along with S.A.F.E.T.I.E.S. to show support. 

February Launch

From left to right, S.A.F.E.T.I.E.S.', then Fly Boys', then Ro(bot)cketry's, then Project Artemis's rockets are shown at our first TARC launch of the year (February 3rd). 

This past weekend, on February 3rd, our four TARC teams set out to Bahama, NC to test fly their rockets. All four teams gathered valuable data through their test flights, which they will use to fine tune their rockets for the next launch. We look forward to our qualification flights to come!

NASA Student Launch

NCSSM has had an amazing year in NASA SL! 

This year, the payload studied the effect of a transition, or tapered “boattail,” at the end of the rocket on the base drag of the vehicle. 

Base drag is the drag caused by turbulence and turbulent flow of air over the aft end of the rocket. The result is an area of low pressure at the end of the rocket, which causes a type of drag called pressure drag. Due to this, we constructed both a tapered boattail and a cylindrical boattail that contain pressure sensors and attach to the aft end of our rocket, allowing for drag calculations with and without the taper, and for calculations of drag during thrust (see reports below for details).

This project was inspired by altitude-based competitions, namely the Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC). Through our experience in TARC and a small amount of physics, we believed a taper would have a reducing effect on the drag on the launch vehicle. We also believed base drag would decrease during thrust. We applied this idea to high power rocketry through this project, investigating the effect of the taper (or the lack thereof) and quantifying it (i.e. is it worth it?). 

This unique experiment caused challenging time constraints during launches as it required two separate test flights every launch (one with each type of boattail). Despite this, along with two hurricanes and a snow storm delaying our activities, NCSSM Rocketry completed successful sub-scale and full-scale launches in Bayboro, NC on December 23rd, 2018, and March 2nd, 2019, respectively. 

Keeping with last year's theme of constellations (naming the full-scale "Gemini" and sub-scale "Ge-mini"), this year's full and sub-scale rockets were named "Apollo" and "Apollittle", respectively. 

Upon passing our Launch Readiness Review with flying colors and successfully launching our full-scale, NCSSM Rocketry then went on to earn the 3rd Place Judge's Choice Award at the NASA Student Launch competition in Huntsville, AL on April 6th, 2019. 

This marks our most successful year in NASA Student Launch, but we hope next year will be even better!

Launch Vehicle Summary

Size and Mass: 7 ft 2.5 in long, 4 inches in diameter, 16.9 pounds

Motor Choice: Aerotech K1103X

Official Target Altitude: 5,000 feet

Recovery System: Dual-deployment with 18 inch drogue at apogee and 5 foot main at 500 feet.

Redundant black powder ejection charges with be used with two Featherweight Raven3 altimeters.

Huntsville Trip

Above are images from our trip to the NASA SL main event in Huntsville, AL from April 3rd-6th, 2019. 

Sub-scale and Full-scale Launches

Members of this year's NASA SL team standing in front of "Apollo" shortly before it soars to over 5700 ft.
Left: an image of our sub-scale ("Apollittle") launching on December 23rd, 2018. Our tapered configuration hit 4440 ft, while our cylindrical one hit 3894 ft. Right: a video from our full-scale ("Apollo") launching on March 2nd, 2019. With the tapered boattail, our rocket reached 5769 ft, and with the cylindrical one, it reached 5171 ft.