Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Smoking Nike Smoke nose cone

Along with my MLAS kits, I picked up a couple of Nike Smoke cones and some T35 tubing.  Rokitflite gave me some fin cans a while back and I finally decided to get some compatible parts.

The purpose of the Nike Smoke system was to visually test upper atmospheric winds.  Its nose cone was filled with various chemicals (titanium tetrachloride in the final operational version), which would produce a visible trail when released.   During powered flight, an inlet pipe in the tip of the cone would force the TiCl4 out ports in its base.  The resulting trails were visible to 75,000 ft.

I just remembered stories about a 'vintage' Enerjet kit with a working nose cone and the gears began turning.  The required holes will of course be easy to drill.  I'm thinking about adding and internal cone to make sure the vented air is forced toward the exit ports.  I'll also have to think about how to load the tracking powder as all the added holes should be fairly small.

This will also free up one of the plastic tips that was missing/lost when I built my Quest Smoke.  In fact, the glue is drying as I type.