(WINDSOR, ON) – A team of University of Windsor’s engineering students are working on a 2.4-metre rocket which they hope will propel them to rocket science greatness.
In June, the students will meet with a number of other rocket builders in the New Mexico desert. In all, they will face off against more than a hundred teams from a dozen countries in the Intercollegiate Rocket Engineering Competition.
The Windsor students will go directly against 50 other teams in the same category. Their rocket must be able to carry a payload of four kilograms to an altitude of 10,000 feet. That is more than three kilometres.
The team’s entry will be judged on its design as well as its performance and the ability of the students to explain and justify the decision-making behind their rocket making. While the rocket will carry instrumentation to record the flight altitude, velocity, acceleration, and more, team captain Patrick Pomerleau-Perron says the group has opted not to add too many extra elements.
“We’re keeping it simple,” he said.
Pomerleau-Perron said, because it is the first competition of its kind for the university, he and his team are hoping it will set an example for future teams, who will build and expand on this initial foray into rocketry.
Shannon Bosilac, the team member responsible for promotions and sponsorship, said the team wants to represent the University and the community well; and, has even named its rocket the Ambassador.
“We will be showing our Lancer pride,” Bosilac said. “We’ll be wearing the Windsor name and colours.”
Building rockets is one thing, but the team is also into fundraising to cover travel and accommodation expenses, as well as buying back-up components for their rocket.
“It takes a lot of support to get something like this off the ground,” Bosilac punned. She noted that the rocket has space for decals and ads to thank sponsors, and invites anyone interested to learn more on the UWindsor Rocketry Facebook page.