Payload Experiments

AKPilot

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Any good experiment ideas out there, besides night launches? I'd like to do something meaningful with my kids?

Of course he'd probably be fine just seeing plastic bugs go up, but it'd be fun to do a real experiment of sorts. If only I could borrow a hamster and a small helment . . . .
 

Justin

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You would also need a very small nomex suit...


I read somewhere about a simple air sampler payload. I don't remember where it was, or what was done with the sample, so this probally won't help much. It may have been in Sport Rocketry, or something from the NAR (NARTS). I would dig around there.
 

MetMan

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You could do real bugs. Do they have crickets at the bait store up there this time of year? Maybe a pet store that sells bugs to predators?
 

Hospital_Rocket

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Go out and get your hands on an inexpensive recording altimeter. Then you can show the budding rocketeers how high the rocket really went. If you are ambitious, you can even get the download kit.

One possibility is the Perfectflite Alt15K/WD

There are others, I am just familiar with this one.


-or-


Build a camera rocket. Everybody likes pictures.
 

DynaSoar

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Originally posted by Justin
You would also need a very small nomex suit...


I read somewhere about a simple air sampler payload. I don't remember where it was, or what was done with the sample, so this probally won't help much. It may have been in Sport Rocketry, or something from the NAR (NARTS). I would dig around there.

That's in Michael Banks & Tim Van Milligan's "Advanced Model Rocketry". Here's the TOC: https://tinyurl.com/6pgb7

Some good experiment ideas, some concepts a little dated, a good bridge between the "Handbook of Model Rocketry" and Canepa's "Modern High Power Rocketry".

Can't imagine a more likely place for night launching right now than AK though.

How about getting a little self-contained blinker such as
https://www.hobby-lobby.com/atricks.htm
# AT3318
and seeing if he can count all the flashes from liftoff to touchdown.
These things are plenty bright.

An idea from "balloon parties": pack a separate very light chute and weight into the body with name, phone and address attached. Send it way up and let it coast to where ever. If someone finds it and reports back, you get data on how far it coasted. Even if it's only 1 mile, it's a kick. Make it highly visible and select your launch site to maximize the probability of being found.
 

Zack Lau

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A less expensive way to measure the altitude is with a "standard streamer." The design appears in the Handbook of Model Rocketry by Harry Stine.

If you really want to do science, I've suggested using two steamers with different decent rates to factor out the effect of thermal activity--is my hypothesis actually useful? You could have one streamer made out of silver mylar and the other out of black plastic for easy identification. One kid could time one and another kid could concentrate on the other.
 

AKPilot

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Thanks for the ideas. I've always wanted to try a night flight, and may give it a shot after talking to the FAA.
 

powderburner

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There are always experiments you can run on the shape of parachutes (round, square, X-form, etc, keeping the same sq.in. area), the number of shroud lines, and the length of shroud lines (with respect to the chute diam)
 
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