Hi everyone, I just wanted to get people's opinions/tips on a "little" project that my college rocketry team is working on. Intended to test our manufacturing capabilities in hopes that the lessons learned can be applied to our much larger competition multi-stage rocket, this project is currently in the design stages. I had a few questions for some of the more seasoned veterans on here.
- Achieving Mach 3 obviously no small task, and quite honestly I'm not sure how many people have done it using commercially-available motors (design is constantly changing, but M-motors are likely going to be used). Our current design features low-profile swept delta fins with a considerable root chord length for strength. It's worth noting that we're making a min-diameter rocket at 75mm made almost entirely out of carbon fiber manufactured in-house. Our goal is to form the fins with a fiberglass core and carbon overlay but is there other materials that could give them the necessary strength to basically not disintegrate on launch (yes, I've had this happen on a smaller L2 rocket before and it was a sight to behold).
- Fin design is still up in the air. Any recommendations on general shape/profile for the lowest drag while still maintaining stability? I assume that the final design will feature a knife-edge on both the leading and trailing edges of the fins.
- One of the issues I've read about that other high-powered rockets encountered was structural failures of the nose cone. Typical off-the-shelf plastic cones won't cut it. As of right now, our two options are to source a reinforced cone with a composite tip (http://www.compositewarehouse.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=34_43&product_id=99), or to prototype and manufacture our own cone. Any feedback on reinforcing nose cones is appreciated. Heat shielding paint of some type will likely be applied at the end as well.
- Any and all feedback/advice is greatly appreciated. We're basically working from the ground up and I'm looking forward to going through the design and testing phase of this project. Happy to keep anyone interested up-to-date on our progress.