Published June 28, 2017
BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON — The Northwest Indian College Space Center teams have won two top places at the First Nations Launch in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Tthe First Nations Launch (FNL) High-Powered Rocket Competition, a national competition, was hosted by NASA’s Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium.
The NWIC competed: the Tribal division and the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) division.
The AISES division team was challenged to design and launch a high-power rocket that had an Active Drag System (ADS), which is a braking system. The NWIC AISES team designed an airbrake system that was created with the on-campus Computer Numeric Control (CNC) mill and with plywood that was shaped with the on-campus laser cutter. The team first flew the rocket with the brakes off then flew it again with the brake system on with the goal of stopping the rocket at 75% of its initial range. The team came close to that threshold by flying it 62 percent of its initial range. The NWIC team was the only team—out of five total competing—successful in creating a working ADS at the competition.
The Tribal division team was challenged to design and launch a dual deployment high-power rocket designed and constructed to maintain a stable flight (with a minimum (0) “X” Roll Axis, “Y” Pitch Axis and “Z” Yaw Axis). The X Roll Axis was the focus in determining the rocket’s stability. In their best performing launch, the teams’ rocket rolled at 67 rpm during travel. Ten total teams competed in this division.