Rocket Model Memo

This memo will focus on how you will be able to contribute to the rocket test program with your computer model of the rocket performance and estimate of the maximum altitude of the rocket. You will need to communicate both the value to the project and your needs for input to the modeling (thrust curve, mass of rocket, ??). Remember, you are proposing what you will do in the modeling, not providing results. You will need to explain what tools (physics and Octave or Excel) will be used to do the modeling and why we can depend on those tools.

Key elements of the assignment:

You and your audience: You work for a small company in Southern maine with NASA and DOD contracts. You have been hired to take on their rocket test program for small weather and other related payloads. While you are only a freshman in Mechanical Engineering, since you are at UMaine you are ready to take on this project (with help from your fellow students). You are smart though (I already said that above :)) so you will start simple. You want to understand the physics of the lauch and flight process. You are going to propose a simple model and test flight with the Estes Loadstar Rocket, modeling of the flight based on Physics 1, MEE101, and your first two classes in Calculus. Testing will use a data aquisition system that can calculate acceleration as a function of time.

1) You must write this memo for a non-specialist technically sophisticated audience in mind. These are people who do not work as rocket launch specialists, but they are comfortable with basic calculus and ideas associated with introductory physics.

2) An important part of the memo is to explain why you are able to do this reliably and to explain that the model is based on strong and well accepted physics

3) Explain how you will verify the accuracy of your model

4) The memo needs to be succinct. Length does not make it stronger.

5) You should at least mention budget and timeline even if you are not able to include details at this time