The Epsom College STEM Rocketry Team ventured over to Stow Maries Aerodrome in Essex for the National Youth Rocketry Competition South East qualification round on Thursday.
Following a safety briefing the team set up their two rockets Ham and Laika, named after the first monkey and dog in space.
The aim of the competition was to launch a rocket (carrying an egg) to 850 feet, the rocket must then split in two parts and return to the ground under the control of two parachutes, all within 41-43 seconds!
The rockets first had to pass scrutineering to ensure they were under the maximum weight limit of 650g, have an altimeter fitted and a raw egg loaded.
The team launched Laika first and, after a good take-off, the rocket separated but only one parachute deployed meaning the flight was disqualified. The team, undaunted, turned their attention to Ham.
A better launch saw Ham reach 832 feet and land in 37 seconds, this gave the team a score of 35.94 points – the best of any rocket competing that day.
Ham was prepared for her second flight. Again, it reached 832 feet. However, as the wind had strengthened, her flight time was 65 seconds, receiving a score of 106.64. With a few alterations to the weight and parachutes, Ham was launched again and this time flew to 802 feet, with a flight time of 52 seconds giving a score of 79.08. This gave the Epsom team a combined score of 115.02, seeing them win by over 30 points.
All the teams worked well together, and hope to be one of the top 20 teams from across the country who will qualify for the National Final next month.
The STEM team will return to action this weekend with our Greenpower Racing Team who have their first race of the season on Sunday at Goodwood.