A model rocket, also known as low power rocket, is a small rocket designed to reach low altitudes (usually to around 100–500 m (300–1500 ft) for a 30 g model) and recovered by a variety of means. They are constructed of paper, wood, plastic and other lightweight materials.
Model rocketry is a safe and widespread hobby. One of the main motivations for the development of the hobby was to provide young people the opportunity to construct flying rocket models without having to engage in dangerous construction of motor units and direct handling of explosive propellants.
In many countries such as the USA, where everything is legal and easily available, there are many school based Rocket Clubs. However, in India, because of Government regulations the much needed items are not freely available. For example: Potassium Nitrate, Carbon, Sulphur, Nichrome Wire etc. There is also the scarcity of fair sized grounds to experiment or engage in this hobby. Plus the laws are not clear and one could always run into trouble with the security people. Despite the threats from extremist activities students must be given the opportunity to experiment at the school and college level taking into consideration various safe guards.
Using Diwali Rockets, Balsa Wood and Glue we have designed AKSHAY-1, India’s First, Single Stage Model. It takes about 2 hours to build it and you can launch it in a small school ground taking into consideration the basic precautions. You can either set it going with a match stick or cigarette lighter or you can set up a remote control electric ignition take off using batteries, electrical wire and a simple launching pad made out of a metal Tin and a metal rod to function as the Guide Rail. With AKSHAY-2, you can also do a two stage separation.
Teachers agree that model rocketry is an exciting, learning tool. Here are just a few of the many benefits.
We have gone on to design more advanced models capable of achieving higher altitudes. Global Aero-Sports has also identified and mentored a group of young engineers from Thejus College of Engineering, Kerala, who had chosen as their course project, an alternative propellant composition for rocket engines. The rocket designed by them, the Pathfinder, is the newest addition to our fleet of model rockets. The Pathfinder is capable of parachute ejection and recovery and can carry on-board, microcircuits to gather weather data.
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