Launch Date: June 23, 2001

 

Rocket: 6 inch IRIS

 

Motor: M1315

 

Cert Level: Level 3 (L and Above)

 

Flight Details: This was my Tripoli Level 3 certification flight. The Aerotech M1315 pushed 50 pound, 50% scale IRIS to 6270 feet. This flight almost didn't happen. While arming the electronics prior to launch, a problem with my Missileworks WRC2 caused two ejection charges to fire. The recovery system was built with redundancy so the flight was made using a single Missileworks RRC2 altimeter. The flight was perfect. Another Level 3 joined the club! The website link below will take you to detailed construction pages.

 

Launch Date: November 17, 2001

 

Rocket: 6 inch IRIS

 

Motor: M1315

 

Cert Level: Level 3 (L and Above)

 

Flight Details: This was the second flight for the IRIS. Apogee was recorded at 6142 feet. Dual deployment recovery worked as designed. The rocket found the only water on the field at touchdown. No major damage to the airframe.

 

Launch Date:  April 13, 2003

 

Rocket: Two-Stage Standard Missile

 

Motor: M2400 and K550

 

Cert Level: Level 3 (L and Above)

 

Flight Details: I was the first person at the launch field on Sunday. The skys were clear and the range was still set up from Saturday's flying. I set up my prep area on the end of the flightline and started getting ready to put everything together. I pulled out my checklist and started down the list. As soon as I got my hands on the M2400 casing I went to work building up the booster motor. This was my first 98mm flight! Jerry O'Sullivan was a great help to me and went to work building up the K550 to be airstarted. Once we got the motors built, we took some time to launch Jerry's 7.5" Nike Smoke on a very loud sparky motor! After the Nike Smoke flight we went back to work on prepping the Standard ARM. The electronics were connected to the switches and the ejection charges were connected to the electronics. The recovery system was packed and repacked at which time I learned that you always need more payload room. The K550 was installed in the sustainer and the sustainer was ready to go. I started to load the M2400 into the booster and found out that the Aeropack was misaligned by about 1/16" of an inch and would not let the motor slide into the motor tube. I removed the retaining screws from the Aeropack ring, inserted the motor, and replaced the ring and screws. The rocket was ready to go! We checked in with the RSO and weighed in at 84 pounds. We got our approval and moved to the LSO and got approval to head to the tower. At the tower we loaded the booster onto the rail first and then the sustainer was mated to the booster and the rail was stood up. I then proceeded to arm the electronics, insert the igniters and get all my pre-launch pictures along with butterflies in my stomach. We walked back to launch control and waited for the launch. When the button was pushed at the end of a very long ten count the M2400 roared to life with a long blue flame. The boost was beautiful! When the M2400 burned out the rocket coasted for one second and then a separation charge fired and the sustainer was ignited. Everything was looking great until the sustainer reached apogee. Something caused the ARRD to release the mains at over 7,000 feet. The booster recovery system never fully deployed and the booster landed hard in the mud. Good news was no damage to the booster. The sustainer was missing in action for over a week and was found by a local farmer out scouting his fields. Thank you J.R. for finding my rocket. Everything was recovered in working order. Thank you Tommy for letting my rocket spend a few days in your garage. A future two-stage flight is planned for the Fall 03 flying season.

 

Launch Date: February 8, 2004

 

Rocket: 6 inch IRIS

 

Motor: M2200

 

Cert Level: Experimental

 

Flight Details: This was the third flight of the IRIS. This was a team project with Bob Utley. The motor was a M2200 white experimental propellant by Bob. The IRIS had a 11.8 gee liftoff on the way to 7800 feet. Max velocity was 1002.42 ft/sec or 683.47 mph.

 

Photo by Jerry O'Sullivan

 

Launch Date: March 13, 2004

 

Rocket: 6 inch Standard Missile

 

Motor: L850

 

Cert Level: Experimental

 

Flight Details: This was supposed to the a two-stage flight of the RIM-67. I had again teamed up with Bob Utley for this flight. The motors were to be a M2000 White in the booster and a L850 White in the sustainer. The skys were clear and blue and the winds were constant all day. I made the decision to go single stage due to the wind. The first attempt to launch was delayed due to a popped ingiter. After the racks of rockets were flown, the igniter was replaced and the Standard ARM was first to go next round. The motor slowly came up to pressure and the boost was beautiful. The ARTS and the ARRD both fired at apogee as planned and removed the nosecone and deploy the drogue chute. The plan was for the 10 foot main to be held in place by the ARRD until 600 feet. The ARRD again released at apogee and the main parachute was deployed. The rocket had reached 4000 feet and was successfully recovered. A special thanks to Jeff Taylor of Loki Research for finding the nosecone. Thanks to Jerry O'Sullivan for the help at the rail and the ride back to the prep area. Another BIG thanks to Bob Utley for the AWESOME white motor. The next two-stage flight is planned for Fall 2004.

 

Launch Date: November 8, 2003

 

Rocket: 6 inch Standard Missile

 

Motor: L875

 

Cert Level: Experimental

 

Flight Details: Saturday at the Eastern Shore Launch (ESL) #67 was a cold and windy affair. This flight was to be the upper stage to a two-stage Standard ARM flight. I had hoped the winds would dimish towards the end of the day but this never happened so I scrubbed the two-stage flight. I decided to fly single stage. The motor was cast under the watchful eye of Bob Utley and was a thing of beauty! The motor turned out to be a L875 and worked perfectly. Thank you BOb! The boost was straight and true to 4182 feet. Not bad for a 36 pound rocket. Recovery was less than perfect. For an undetermined reason, the ARRD released the 8 foot main parachute at apogee.The upper winds were not bad and the Standard ARM dropped like a rock to about 1000 feet. The rocket was caught in a gust and blew about 1/2 mile away from the flightline. Everything was recovered and the sustainer lived to fly another day. I will be replacing the nosecone and the sustainer bay before the next flight. A special thanks to Jerry O'Sullivan for his help in prep and loading at the rail.

 

Launch Date: 11/12/05

 

Rocket: 6" IRIS

 

Motor: M1800

 

Cert Level: Experimental

 

Flight Details: I always try to get in one lauch during the fall flying season on the big fields. The 6" IRIS is a great flyer and this flight was no different. The M1800 White motor roared to life and pushed the 50 lb. IRIS straight and true to over 7000 feet. Recovery was perfect.

 

ILaunch Date:  10/23/04

 

Rocket: RIM-67 ER Standard Missile

 

Motor:  98 to 54mm

 

Flight Log: I made my third attempt at a fully successful two-stage flight on 10/23/04.  The goal of the flight was to fly on experimental motors, use the Defy Gravity Tether for the recovery release mechanism, and to recover the rocket undamaged and ready to fly again.

 

The Maryland Delaware Rocketry Association (MDRA) hold their fall, winter and spring Eastern Shore Launches (ESL) at the Higg's Dairy Farm.  Saturday's launch was ESL #77.  The booster was recovered in a stand of pine trees just before dark.  Our landowner host, Tommy Higgs, spotted the booster and interstage in the pine trees.  Tommy was very helpful in getting his neighbor to allow us on to their property to recover the booster.  Thank you Tommy!

 

The experimental 8,000 NS 98mm White booster motor and the 1750 NS 54mm sustainer motors performed flawlessly.  The 90 pound Standard ARM pulled 8.669 gees with the booster reaching 3696 feet.

 

The sustainer was recovered a few months after the launch.  A little damage needs to be repaired before the next two-stage flight.

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