NorthEast Regional Rocketry Festival
My friend John and I drove into New York State to watch the
NorthEast Regional Rocketry Festival. A sod farm gave the
rockets plenty of space for safety. The field was divided into
six launch areas. Two each of low power, medium/high power, and distant
high power rails. Fifty one Launch Pads total allowed us to see
over 200 rockets launch in six hours.
All rockets were ignited from this control center.
The Range Safety Officer runs the show
Soon after we arrived a rocket came down in the parking area.
All of these parts were strung together: parachute, nose cone, padding,
lower fin section, instrument section (altimeter), more padding.
This is one of the larger, brightest painted, low power rockets.
Due to the large variation in engine size and fuel the rockets vary in noise,
speed, and smoke. Some of the high power rockets use homemade engines loaded with
Ammonium Perchorate Composite Propellant. Some accelerated too fast for me to capture.
This rocket is rising from one of the distant rails.
It is about 9 feet tall. A similar size rocket reached 12,000 feet
(2.3 miles) which is the highest limit allowed by the FAA at this site.
Some are long and thin, others short and wide.
If there is an award for best paint job this is the winner.
This photo almost became the last sighting of this rocket.
Many rockets disappeared above the clouds, but no one saw this one reappear.
After a long search it was found in a tree. A few rockets have locator beacons.
I had not seen Brad Oestreicher from 1978 until this event.
Here he is picking up the sections of his rocket, perhaps a half mile way.
We saw rockets with between one and five motors.
Some like this two engine rocket angle the motors outward.
Unusual rockets here include a Sputnik, a blue box that looks like
the Tardis from Doctor Who, and one made from Polystyrene coffee cups.
The featherweight Sputnik came down on the tent protecting the launch equipment.
The Coffee Cup rocket is made from a kit sold by a vendor at the show.
Note the Tardis has gone out of control and is still under power as it
dives for the launch pad. Almost no larger rockets went anywhere but up.
Many of the participents displayed their collection under canopies.
A model of a Redstone Rocket launching a Mercury Space Capsule
The red structure is an escape rocket, deleted in Gemini but to be brought back.
The largest rocket on the low power launch pads.
This is a two stage kit with 3 engines on the first stage.
This Red White and Blue rocket was about 7 inches in diameter and loud.
This flying saucer still had flames coming out when it landed
about 10 feet from my chair. Note the people looking at me!.
A bunch of young girls took over this section for awhile.
They used unusual designs and paint jobs including this leopard skin number.
This unusual craft looked a little like a wooden bird house.
This is typical of the many photos I took of parachutes.
Here is a video of the only rocket I could follow start to finish.
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