After a year of intense hard work, a rocketry team from Sydney University will compete in 2019 edition of SAC competition, which is conducted at New Mexico. It will be among 100 other teams from all over the world, with each team launching rockets built by students. There are various categories and students may compete on the basis of altitude targets & propulsion systems. Sydney University team members have their Silvereye rocket entered for the 10000 feet category. This means, that the team will launch a commercial-grade motor equipped rocket, aiming to cross 3 km in height or higher.
It scored well past that mark during a launch in South Wales. This was again pulled off in Queensland at another rocket competition this year.
It has a top speed rating above 1000 km/hour and can carry a mini-satellite. 2U sized CubeSats can be flown this way for test flying satellites or conducting microgravity experiments, stated Mitchell Galletly, the chief brains behind the project. They used systems engineering methodologies to design this rocket and ensure it as customizable, safe and reliable.
They are confident about winning the SAC even though no team from Australia has even been able to enter it, Mitchell explained that Silvereye used a carbon fiber-based airframe that’s custom designed, along with propellants allowing it to approach extremely high speeds. Clara Morris, the team’s VP stated that competing this year was a remark on the team’s effort. Testing, design and construction and analysis went into Silvereye’s making. This piece of practical exposure has been immensely rewarding, they said.
Former astronaut Prof. Chamitoff stated that entering the competition alone showed the team’s skill and determination. He was outright impressed by the team and their detail-oriented approach. Minister Geoff Lee stated that their entry was a comment of the quality of education in South Wales and wished them luck. Silvereye follows the success of the team’s first rocket, Wedgetail, which was created in 2017.