Highly Unnecessarily complex K-9 Launch system

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Yukon@K-9 Rocket Tech

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Hi Everyone! I have been working on this launch pad where the awesome factor highly outweighs the practicality of this system. It consists of a launch pad, and controller. besides the main structure which is made of wood, most of it is 3d printed. The pad has 4 leds and 2 spot lights (one isn't wired yet). It also has a back support which still needs a linear actuator to pull back before launch, and a working clamp. I'm also working on the flame trench with a water deluge system. The launch controller is WIP also, with a estimated half mile of range. I just wanted to see what everyone thinks of it. Are there tings I should be aware of? This is my first launch pad I ever built, and I would like the communities feedback. Thanks!

Before I go, I want to know how much people want me to open source this launch pad like my other projects



-Yukon

P.S. Also I'm a Newbie forum member, so may make a few mistakes :D
 

RocketRev

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Hello Yukon,

I'm guessing that when you say your system is WIP, that you mean it is operating on some particular "Wireless Internet Protocols." If that's the case, what are you using to keep unwanted wireless signals from launching your rocket?

Or does your WIP mean the other standard meaning of a "Work In Progress." Just wondering. If there are no signal interference safeguards then your system could be seriously compromised.

Brad
 

stealth6

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Am I correct that the idea is for the back support/clamp is supposed to hold the rocket upright, and then pull back just before launch? (similar to how "real" rockets are launched). And am I also correct that this is not just for show, and that there is no launch rail or rod? If so, that's going be problematic.

At the scale of model/hobby rocketry, and more specifically with no stabilizing gyros and such on board the rocket, you will almost certainly have badly angled launches at best, and highly dangerous missiles launching horizontally/straight into people at worst. A model rocket has to accelerate to be stable (assuming there are no gyros or gimbaled motors, etc.). And it therefore MUST be stabilized...usually by a rod or rail....during that time between rest and sufficient velocity to establish stability....even if that time frame is just a fraction of a second. Unless the timing of your ignition and clamp release are absolutely perfect (which would be virtually impossible to achieve) your rocket will in all likelihood tilt over, just a bit or even completely fall over, just as the thrust kicks in, resulting in a completely unpredictable trajectory with a high chance of being straight at people. Not good.

Now, if you in fact do incorporate an actual launch rail/rod, and the clamping mechanism is just for show....well I think that's pretty dang cool. But still with some potentially dangerous aspects.

s6
 

rcktnut

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Am I correct that the idea is for the back support/clamp is supposed to hold the rocket upright, and then pull back just before launch? (similar to how "real" rockets are launched). And am I also correct that this is not just for show, and that there is no launch rail or rod? If so, that's going be problematic.

At the scale of model/hobby rocketry, and more specifically with no stabilizing gyros and such on board the rocket, you will almost certainly have badly angled launches at best, and highly dangerous missiles launching horizontally/straight into people at worst. A model rocket has to accelerate to be stable (assuming there are no gyros or gimbaled motors, etc.). And it therefore MUST be stabilized...usually by a rod or rail....during that time between rest and sufficient velocity to establish stability....even if that time frame is just a fraction of a second. Unless the timing of your ignition and clamp release are absolutely perfect (which would be virtually impossible to achieve) your rocket will in all likelihood tilt over, just a bit or even completely fall over, just as the thrust kicks in, resulting in a completely unpredictable trajectory with a high chance of being straight at people. Not good.

Now, if you in fact do incorporate an actual launch rail/rod, and the clamping mechanism is just for show....well I think that's pretty dang cool. But still with some potentially dangerous aspects.

s6

When I seen this post I was thinking the same thing, also no fins on the rocket. But then I seen this:https://caninerockettech.wixsite.com/rocket/development

I guess it is a pad for a gimbaled thrust rocket.
 

Yukon@K-9 Rocket Tech

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Am I correct that the idea is for the back support/clamp is supposed to hold the rocket upright, and then pull back just before launch? (similar to how "real" rockets are launched). And am I also correct that this is not just for show, and that there is no launch rail or rod? If so, that's going be problematic.

At the scale of model/hobby rocketry, and more specifically with no stabilizing gyros and such on board the rocket, you will almost certainly have badly angled launches at best, and highly dangerous missiles launching horizontally/straight into people at worst. A model rocket has to accelerate to be stable (assuming there are no gyros or gimbaled motors, etc.). And it therefore MUST be stabilized...usually by a rod or rail....during that time between rest and sufficient velocity to establish stability....even if that time frame is just a fraction of a second. Unless the timing of your ignition and clamp release are absolutely perfect (which would be virtually impossible to achieve) your rocket will in all likelihood tilt over, just a bit or even completely fall over, just as the thrust kicks in, resulting in a completely unpredictable trajectory with a high chance of being straight at people. Not good.

Now, if you in fact do incorporate an actual launch rail/rod, and the clamping mechanism is just for show....well I think that's pretty dang cool. But still with some potentially dangerous aspects.

s6
Thanks for your answer. I think I didn't go into detail enough if the description. Yes this is for a model rocket with TVC like rcktnut mentioned. This will not be used for non gimbaled rockets for the reason you have mentioned. Don't want rockets flying anywhere else but up lol :)

The strut in the back and the clamp serve the purpose of keeping the top steady just before lift off. I did think of building launch clamps, but that is unnecessary
 
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Yukon@K-9 Rocket Tech

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When I seen this post I was thinking the same thing, also no fins on the rocket. But then I seen this:https://caninerockettech.wixsite.com/rocket/development

I guess it is a pad for a gimbaled thrust rocket.
Thanks! Yes it'll use gimbaled thrust. The rocket there isn't a rocket. It's a paper tube with a nose cone for fit check. I think I forgot to put that in the description. The rocket I'm building will have much more things on it
 

stealth6

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Gimbaled thrust...got it. Way cool.

Still though, I honestly don't see how that will actually work to provide sufficient stability at launch/lift-off. Sure, once the vehicle is at velocity (and has "cleared the rail" in normal model rocketry), but during those crucial moments between at rest, during initial thrust, and acceleration up to sufficient speed? I'm not seeing it. I am however very intrigued, and would love to know more.

Oh, and by the way, I do believe there is a time and place for "where the awesome factor highly outweighs the practicality of this system". Sometimes "just because it's cool" is totally worth doing something. But safety outweighs everything regardless, and should never be compromised or overlooked.

tell/show us more!
s6
 

Yukon@K-9 Rocket Tech

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Gimbaled thrust...got it. Way cool.

Still though, I honestly don't see how that will actually work to provide sufficient stability at launch/lift-off. Sure, once the vehicle is at velocity (and has "cleared the rail" in normal model rocketry), but during those crucial moments between at rest, during initial thrust, and acceleration up to sufficient speed? I'm not seeing it. I am however very intrigued, and would love to know more.

Oh, and by the way, I do believe there is a time and place for "where the awesome factor highly outweighs the practicality of this system". Sometimes "just because it's cool" is totally worth doing something. But safety outweighs everything regardless, and should never be compromised or overlooked.

tell/show us more!
s6
Thank you! Yes that is the tricky part that I am researching extensively about. A fast lift off just doesn't go along with TVC, but a slow lift off is hard to control. The Idea I toyed around with is to use one gimbaled motor in the center, and 6 booster motors around it. So the main motor will lift off slowy under TVC and the 6 boost motors around it will ignite mid air to begin flight. The ejection charge of the 6 boost motors will eject themselves out to reduce weight. Due to the now extra space created, the flight computer can allow the TVC to gimbal with much more freedom. Of course this has a lot of issues and challenges, so for now, sticking with a single gimbaled motor.
 

georgegassaway

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Joe Barnard (BPS.SPACE) has been doing just that for his gimbaled TVC rockets, no rods and no rails. Took me awhile to realize he wasn't using a rod, so when the nose section is clamped until just before liftoff he has a real purpose for doing so. He has a lot of other neat stuff gong on with his pad system.

In the clip below, I MIGHT have seen a clamping system holding onto the base of the rocket too.
IIRC when he flew his Falcon-Heavy model on three E9's or E12's, he did hold it down for ignition of the two outer boosters, then lit the center motor a bit later and let it fly, so the outer boosters would burn out earlier and fall away while the center core was still burning.

What I do not know is if he has also had the base of a single engine rocket clamped until liftoff or not. Although a recent live stream launch attempt, the rocket motor ignited but the rocket did not take off, and Joe said something was wrong with the pad electronics. So if he is using a base clamp system, that may be what failed.
.
 

Yukon@K-9 Rocket Tech

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Joe Barnard (BPS.SPACE) has been doing just that for his gimbaled TVC rockets, no rods and no rails. Took me awhile to realize he wasn't using a rod, so when the nose section is clamped until just before liftoff he has a real purpose for doing so. He has a lot of other neat stuff gong on with his pad system.

In the clip below, I MIGHT have seen a clamping system holding onto the base of the rocket too.
IIRC when he flew his Falcon-Heavy model on three E9's or E12's, he did hold it down for ignition of the two outer boosters, then lit the center motor a bit later and let it fly, so the outer boosters would burn out earlier and fall away while the center core was still burning.

What I do not know is if he has also had the base of a single engine rocket clamped until liftoff or not. Although a recent live stream launch attempt, the rocket motor ignited but the rocket did not take off, and Joe said something was wrong with the pad electronics. So if he is using a base clamp system, that may be what failed.
.
Yes Joe's older launch pad relied on the clamp to keep the vehicle upright till lift off. As for his recent live stream and FH launch (with the same pad) it relies on clamp on the bottom like a real rocket that release at lift off. That's why scout stood up for a sec, and fell over. The clamp released before ignition. I am not building base launch clamps, but rather will relies on the clamp on top to make the system simpler
 

stealth6

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OK, I'm impressed.
George, thanks for posting Joe Barnard's stuff...hadn't seen that before....gotta say, "whoah".

Yukon, definitely keep us posted with your projects....looks pretty cool.

s6
 

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I have used R/C to launch rockets, but always had the power supply and receiver at least 20" from the rocket itself. IF there happened to be stray signals nearby, I would be at least 20" away from the rocket when I connected the power leads, and if the rocket did launch, it would be safe. Assuming it didn't, and I never had one that did, I could take the remote about 150' from the rocket, and get a good view of the launch.
 

Yukon@K-9 Rocket Tech

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I have used R/C to launch rockets, but always had the power supply and receiver at least 20" from the rocket itself. IF there happened to be stray signals nearby, I would be at least 20" away from the rocket when I connected the power leads, and if the rocket did launch, it would be safe. Assuming it didn't, and I never had one that did, I could take the remote about 150' from the rocket, and get a good view of the launch.
Great point! Yes for this reason, power to the whole system is controlled remotely also. So once I'm like 50ft away, I can flood power into the whole system remotley
 
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