Only a few months after creating a team to explore aerospace concepts and design, students in UTC’s College of Engineering and Computer Science came away ranked third in the nation.
Calling themselves the Rocket Mocs, members of the UTC team designed, engineered and manufactured their debut entry for the University Student Rocketry Challenge, a competition featuring about 40 teams from other universities. All teams were comprised of members from Students for Exploration and Development of Space chapters.
“I couldn’t be happier for them,” said UTC faculty advisor Dr. Trevor Elliott. “They represented UTC very well against well-established competitors and aerospace programs.”
Judges for the competition were aerospace industry professionals from companies such as Unite Launch Alliances, SpaceX and Sierra Nevada Corp. One judge noted that the top three contenders were clearly set apart from the other teams and final placement came down to a very small point margin.
First place in the competition went to the University of Missouri and second place was Arizona State University.
The UTC rocket was built in conjunction with a senior-level design course in which the team developed models, performed simulations, constructed prototypes, completed test launches and analyzed post flight data.
“The idea of studying rocket propulsion for a class project started out as an intimidating feat for our team,” says Design Team Leader William Reynolds. “As inexperienced undergraduate students, we learned that we have been given the tools to study interdisciplinary engineering applications and came out of this experience with a deep understanding of the field of aeronautics and a passion to continue such work post-graduation.”
Kevin Braziel, the team’s launch control and recovery systems designer, says the competition“opened up new opportunities to learn about rockets, space exploration and developments currently taking place, and even specific companies who combine all these and more into inspiring careers. … I personally hope that this incredible experience might eventually lead me on a path to a career in the aerospace industry.”
To read a synopsis of the team’s work and see its design portfolio, go to: http://utcseds2017.weebly.com.