By Julia Pierce ’17
Have you always wanted to be an astronaut? How about building a rocket that travels to outer space? Current seniors in the Engineering Department are working hard to accomplish their project in time for the CanSat Competition taking place June 9 to 11, 2017 in Stephenville, Texas.
The competition is organized by The American Astronautical Society (AAS) and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). The competition is an annual student design-build-launch opportunity for space-related topics and is open to teams from universities and colleges.
According to the CanSat website “Students as well as many other contestants are given the satisfaction of being involved with the end-to-end lifecycle of a complex engineering project, from conceptual design, through integration and test, actual operation of the system and concluding with a post-mission summary and debrief.”
Teams must be able to design and build a space-type system, following the approved competition guide, and then compete against each at the end of two semesters to determine the winners. Rockets will be provided, but teams are responsible for funding the construction of their CanSat, as well as all travel and lodging expenses.
“The purpose of the project is to compile all of the aspects of a space rocket using the design project,” said Amos Muma, a senior Engineering student. “If we make it far enough in the competition we will be able to go to Texas and launch our design project. The top 20 to 40 schools get this opportunity.”
The CanSat Web page also informs that the CanSat system is composed of two primary components, a science vehicle and a re-entry container that protects the vehicle during ascent, “near-apogee” deployment and initial re-entry/descent.
For updates and more information about the CanSat Competition, visit http://www.cansatcompetition.com/index.html