As a member of the Propulsion Team for BSLI's Spaceport America Cup project team, I worked to help verify the solid rocket motor propellent formula, casting process, and obtain data for full vehicle simulations.
A project team like no other
BSLI's Spaceport America Cup (SAC) team competes in the 30k ft, SRAD (Student Research and Developed), solid rocket motor category. Previously BSLI has placed first in our category in 2017, and most recently finished 4th overall in 2022.
This year, the team developed Odyssey, an iteration of previous rockets, designed and modified with an emphasis of durability and ease of integration. While teams worked diligently to design the new body tubes, avionics bay, transition piece, and recovery system, propulsion focused on understanding recent testing and launch failures regarding the solid rocket motor propellent formula and casting process.
Through many characteristic and full duration burns, we worked to validate the correct propellent formula to ensure the risk of a RUD on the pad or during flight was minimal. For the upcoming school year, the team plans to continue further validation testing and making improvements to the formula and casting process.