I have built many rockets in my lifetime. From bottle rockets to big models to ones with eggstronauts. Though, of all the experiences I’ve had building rockets, the one at 3RF was the best.
The student ambassadors arrived at 3RF and the Dallas Area Rocketry Society has many of their models on display. My jaw dropped as I saw the most intricate rockets I’d ever seen. From insanely big multi-stage rockets to some as small as a pencil, they had everything! I was immediately excited to get started.
One of the cool things was that even though there was a kit, it wasn’t just sliding things into place, you actually had to measure distances for the fins and such. It was a more involved process than what I’d done before, which I loved.
After a while, we finished building our rocket, and they announced that we could start decorating. I got excited all over again. We got to use spray paint, colorful tapes, and stickers. The rocket my friend Krystal and I ended up making was spray painted blue with a big white stripe down it. We also put caution tape on the top, giving us the idea to name our rocket “Caution.” We also made our team name The Rockettes.
With our rocket beautified, we headed to the launch site. I was surprised by how legit everything appeared. Before we launched, there were plenty of things we had to do. First, we had to angle the rocket in the direction it would go. Basically, Andy Aldrin (Buzz Aldrin’s son) brought this huge map of the moon and we laid it out on the ground and had a competition to see whose rocket could get the closest to the moon.
So we got to the setup for launch, which was essentially a car battery hooked up to a bunch of switches and a big red button. We had to do a lot of checks to make sure everything was safe, then we turned a key to arm the system and then came the fun part. We did a countdown and then got to smack that big red button. Our rocket took off and went really, really high. After launching, the streamer came out to slow down its descent. I watched as the wind picked up and the rocket started swaying right towards the moon map! We ended up landing only 40 feet from the moon! We didn’t end up winning, but we got 3rd overall and 1st out of the girls! Overall I think we rock(ed)et!
Post by Bella Roberts