Tuesday, March 02, 2010
The race to be the biggest (amateur rocketry)
Gizmodo is featuring the work of Copenhagen Suborbitals (C-S) and their HEAT-1X project. (Yesterday, I posted an embedded video of one of their hybrid motor tests. Cool stuff!) The blogger points out that the HEAT series are all-metal rockets as opposed to Steve Eves' 1:10 scale Saturn V, which is largely cardboard, wood and of course fiberglass. Not to discount these fellows' efforts, but metal schemtal. At 36 feet + (~11 meters) the Saturn V is still taller than the HEAT-1X. The image at the top is from Gizmodo. If I has a better graphics program on this netbook I might have modified it to show Steve's rocket.
Back to not discounting the Danes' work, it is clear that their goals are more lofty, both figuratively and literally. Steve's Saturn was built for fun and bragging rights while C-S is on a mission to "develop a series of suborbital space vehicles - designed to pave the way for manned space flight on a micro size spacecraft." I can't say anything bad about that. Except the Saturn V is still bigger :raspberries:
(I'm categorizing their work as 'professional rocketry' since, despite being amateurs and non-profit, their work seems closer to UPAerospace than it does to Steve's operation. Plus, if they can reliably and repeatedly make it suborbital, they likely won't be either for long.)