Rebuilding the Arsenal
A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes
First was introduced to Model Rockets in the Fourth Grade. WHOA!
This information has been declassified. While not subject to the "Freedom of Information Act" it needs to be disclosed among the general population.
Later I will elaborate on my research, this draft is dedicated to KODAK II.
This was the second flight of the classified "Camera Rocket" in the early Nineties.
The first flight being an unprecedented success. 35 millimeter photographs taken from hundreds of feet in the air provided an unprecedented VIEW FROM ABOVE. While single shot 110 mm rocket cams were commercially available, I choose to build my own 35 mm REMOTE CONTROL spy cams.
The flight of KODAK TWO was ,however, marred by industrial failure. In the months between KODAK I and its successor, the Industrial Giant Rocket Motor Company, stopped production of its highest impulse engines. No longer was a 2 engine booster available according to the Space Budget. In an effort to preserve National Security, the Engineering Department opted for the less safe 4 engine booster.
Careful attention was applied to construction and fueling of the booster.
Calculations indicated a slight increase in liftoff G's which would in turn provide an higher Apogee. Based on earlier results higher altitude could only be a plus.
Launch Day FAll early 90's.
All clear, blue sky, nearly zero breeze.
The FURY OF FOUR ENGINES COMING TO LIFE A THRUSTING THIS BIRD SKYWARD made my heart pound like no other although it always seems to exhilarate!
I never clustered four engines before, three was the most and they were all smaller.
Like a great sword the arrow climbed gracefully......
until about a hundred feet.
A brilliant Orange Star fell from the sky as the booster struggled to altitude.
What had happened?
The rocket arched over as the cameraphoger (Mrs. Gone by remote control) kept taking pics. The parachute deployed as the booster fell through a Hawthorn tree.
Blew the engine compartment (pic) in two.
One engine overheated and blew up. This is EXTREMELY RARE in Model Rocketry ,one reason I kept the BUSTED BOOSTER. The lower right "tube" in the pic was its mount. My forensics indicated construction error of filling cavities with expanding foam. No heat dissipation.
Despite the odd trajectory some pics were legible. Autumn colors from a hundred feet.
I'll scan some pics someday.
For now I just aquired an inexpensive digital with 17 second "video" option.....
Synapses are firing.