Thursday, November 10, 2011

Hobby rocket motors used to boost satellite

Credit: Aerospace Corp
Rocketry Planet reports that the grains and nozzles from four AeroTech E28T RMS motors were installed to boost a picosat in orbit. The PicoSatellite Solar Cell Testbed 2 (PSSC-2), built by the Aerospace Corporation for the US Air Force, was deployed from STS-135 on July 19th where its 1st mission was to take some of the last on-orbit photos of the Shuttle.  On November 4th, the first of the E28T's were fired to raise the PSSC-2's orbit.  An Aerospace Corp rep stated that it is believed that this is the first time a rocket motor was used on a picocat and the first time that a picosat had re-boosted itself. This is also the first time a hobby rocket motor was used for any similar purpose. The article further notes that the stock Copperhead igniter was NOT used.

How cool is this?!?   Also, it's good to see some new content of Rocketry Planet.